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Equipping the nations from the Netherlands

CMS missionaries David and Cathie Sandifer serve at Tyndale Theological Seminary in the Netherlands. In this article, David introduces one of his students from Tyndale.

It is an astonishing privilege to commune with God through the Bible and his Spirit. The word of God has been given to us not merely for information, but for our spiritual nourishment. Yet one of the perverse dangers of theological education is that the Bible can become a mere textbook. It is our prayer that the Scriptures would remain fresh for us and that our students would grow not only in knowledge, but in love and obedience to the Lord. 

The academic year at Tyndale is at an end. We are so thankful for the students God has given us, and for the ministries that he has called them to as they go forward from here.  

“Many Rwandans are confronted with Western secular ideas for the first time when they go to university, and often their churches are not equipped to answer their questions.” 

Meet Elijah* 

Elijah is 24 years old and comes to us from Rwanda. He is in his second year at Tyndale and has been in my public theology class. Elijah has a strong sense of God’s calling on his life for ministry. While he was studying at university in Rwanda, he served as the president of the Christian student group, and this gave him a heart to see young Rwandans truly discipled. Many Rwandans are confronted with Western secular ideas for the first time when they go to university, and often their churches are not equipped to answer their questions.  

Role of literature in discipleship 

Elijah has been greatly helped in his own discipleship by key Christian writers such as C S Lewis, and one of his hopes is to help make good Christian books more widely available to churches in Rwanda.  

Elijah and I are developing a list of key books that are useful to Christians in areas ranging from theology and apologetics to discipleship, Bible study, and devotional aids that he can use in ministry when he returns. He has also received copyright permission to translate CS Lewis’ Screwtape Letters into the main Rwandan language, Kinyarwanda, and this is an on-going project for him while at Tyndale.  

Elijah describes coming to Tyndale as a ‘miracle’ for him, saying that God has used his time here to cement his faith, in ways that he had not experienced before. God willing, he expects to be ordained in the Anglican Church of Rwanda when he returns.  

* Name changed for privacy reasons. 

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