Reformed Theology in the Gambia

The Gambia Partnership is a Scottish based charity working in the Gambia, a small country on the West coast of Africa dominated by Muslims. The main aim of the Gambia Partnership is to support the work of the Gospel in the Gambia in Partnership with the Christian schools and churches.

The Partnership has a committee based in Scotland and at the moment is seeking to establish a committee based in the Gambia to further the objectives of the Partnership and ultimately to advance the Gospel in the Gambia. The main contact of the Partnership in the Gambia is Pastor Reuben Weedor.

Amongst the various objectives of the Partnership including child sponsorship, school building projects and evangelism lies the issue of reformed theology. Christianity in the Gambia is a particularly small minority, somewhere in the region of 3-5% with that figure including the likes of the Roman Catholic Church and the Seventh Day Adventists etc.Therefore the percentage of true Biblical Christianity is even smaller than the estimated figure of 3-5%.

In order to advance the Gospel in the Gambia, it is not only necessary to evangelise the lost by bringing the Gospel to those living in the various towns and villages but it is also necessary to facilitate this by providing the opportunity for the believers to study God’s Word in order that they might be better equipped to reach out and to teach others themselves.

For this reason the Partnership has sought to encourage reformed theology in the Gambia. It does so through paying for the rental costs of a building used as a ministry centre, providing reformed books and materials and a limited supply of IT equipment within the centre. There is opportunity for both formal and informal study at the ministry centre.

The formal study element is provided via distance learning courses taught by professors at Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary in Grand Rapids, America. The distance learning coordinator of the Seminary kindly provided a hard drive with all the classes taught at the Seminary, in order that we might make them available to those interested in studying in the Gambia.

The Partnership will pay the purchase and postal costs of the textbooks for any particular course that is being studied as well as any costs associated with sitting the exams in the Gambia. This is a cost effective way of making good reformed theological study available in a country that normally wouldn’t have access to such teaching. At the moment a handful of men have begun meeting on Saturdays to listen together to the lectures for Prolegomena, which is the introductory class for Systematic Theology. Should anyone progress particularly well, there will be opportunity to work towards a Certificate in Systematic Theology.

Dave Weedor, Pastor Reuben Weedor’s eldest son, has recently finished school and after indicating his interest in theological study, he has begun studying Prolegomena as well as informal study in other areas. The following is taken from a recent email sent by Dave relating to his studies:

“Due to some problems I have not had much time in communicating with you about my studies development for that I apologise. Although I find myself in being drag down by some in the society, when I look into the Word of God it gives me strength to know that holy men of God went through trials and temptation for their faith in God and were rewarded because they kept their faith in Him.

My studies haven’t stop due to these problems, my daily reading and listening of the theological books and messages you gave is of great help in understanding the true doctrine of God as written in the Scripture. I am still on the topic Prolegomena, in between that I take time to go through other materials like, Walking with God by J.C. Ryle, Only one Baptism of the Holy Spirit by Peter Masters, the shorter and larger Catechism and readings on the Reformed Presbyterian Church of Scotland not forgetting the book on Worship.

I know deep down within me that the Lord is preparing me in His own way to preach and teach His Word not to add or subtract from what the Scripture teaches.”

Please remember Pastor Reuben, Dave and the other men studying reformed theology in the Gambia as well as the further work of the Gambia Partnership in this nation in great need of the Gospel. For further information, please visit www.thegambiapartnership.co.uk.

Scott Maciver

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