Religion has played a major role in both the division and unification of peoples and countries within Africa. Its capacity to cause, and to heal, societal rifts has been well documented. This book addresses this powerful societal force, and explores the implications of a theology of reconstruction, most notably articulated by Jesse Mugambi. This way of thinking seeks to build on liberation theology, aiming to encourage the rebuilding of African society on its own terms.

An international panel of contributors bring an interdisciplinary perspective to the issues around reconstructing the religious elements of African society. Looking at issues of reconciliation, postcolonialism and indigenous spirituality, among others, they show that Mugambi’s cultural and theological insight has the potential to revolutionise the way people in Africa address this issue.

This is a fascinating exploration of the religious facets of African life. As such, it will be of great interest to scholars of religious studies, theology and African studies.

chapter |14 pages


Engaging religion and reconstruction
ByElias Kifon Bongmba

part I|81 pages

Biblical and ecclesial perspectives

chapter 1|8 pages

Texts of affirmation rather than negation

Jesse N. K. Mugambi and African biblical studies
ByKnut Holter

chapter 2|10 pages

The life of King David as a model of reconstruction

ByDavid Tuesday Adamo

chapter 3|9 pages

Worshipping God the spirit “in spirit and truth” in Africa

One African woman’s reflections on John 4:19–24
ByMadipoane Masenya (Ngwan’a Mphahlele)

chapter 4|12 pages


The hidden but relevant God in the Yoruba religious imagination
ByEnoch Olujide Gbadegesin

chapter 5|14 pages

Destiny and eschatology in Jesse N. K. Mugambi’s writings

ByJohn Fischer

chapter 6|16 pages

The church of the future

Dialogue on the ecclesiology of Mugambi
ByElias Kifon Bongmba

chapter 7|10 pages

Christian councils in Africa

Whence? whither?: impressions
ByHarold Miller

part II|100 pages

Liberation and reconstruction

chapter 10|10 pages


Theology of reconstruction and intercultural theology
ByFranz Gmainer-Pranzl

chapter 11|19 pages

Reconstruction theology in action

Exploring the significance of Jesse N. K. Mugambi’s theological contribution through a case study of Nairobi Chapel/Mavuno church in Nairobi, Kenya
ByDiane Stinton

chapter 12|18 pages

Theology of reconstruction

A paradigm for reflection on revitalization in African Christianity
ByKyama Mugambi

chapter 13|12 pages

“… Then towards the rebuilding of our societies now in Ruins”

ByNtozakhe Simon Cezula

chapter 14|14 pages

Reconstructing mission

The church in Africa in the service of justice, peace, and reconciliation
ByPhilomena Njeri Mwaura

part III|132 pages

Future trajectories on religion and theology in a global context

chapter 16|14 pages

Integrity of mission in light of the gospel in Africa

A perspective from an African in diaspora
ByTite Tiénou

chapter 17|17 pages

On freedom

Risking a (faithful) reinterpretation
ByJames R. Cochrane

chapter 18|13 pages

The challenge facing the next generation of African theologians

ByLaurenti Magesa

chapter 19|13 pages

Narratives of the future in African history

Advancing aspirations for liberation and reconstruction in Africa 1
ByLoreen Maseno

chapter 20|14 pages

African theology and African literature

Rediscovering a daring intellectual project
ByAbraham Waigi Ng’ang’a

chapter 21|12 pages

Theological education in Africa

Concerns and contribution of Professor Jesse N. K. Mugambi
ByDickson Nkonge Kagema

chapter 22|16 pages

Missions and money revisited 1

ByJonathan Bonk

chapter 23|18 pages

Managing religious diversity in Tanzania

Islamic revivalism and modes of governance
ByFrans Wijsen