This lecture was delivered under the auspices of Gadangme Nikasemo Asafo in London by Reverend G. Nii Noi Odonkor, Chairperson of the Ga Presbytery on 18th October 2014
Thank you so much for the invitation to share some ideas on culture and Christianity with you. For starters I want to admit that the topic is a bit broad and so narrowing it should be the way out. Culture is a way of life of a people and religion is one of the pillars of culture of a people. Since the context is that of GaDangme I will narrow the reference to Ga Culture. The Christian faith may have its different strands but I will be making general references to it.
For me the topic is an attempt at reflecting on –Being African (Ga) and Christian at one and the same time.
How can we be truthfully Ga Christians? To answer this I think we should be guided by two verses in the New Testament:
- Paul’s admonition in 1Thesslonians 5:21-22. ‘Use your judgment, hold on to whatever is really good; steer clear of evil in any form’
- The Great Question/Confession: when Jesus asked the disciples the question of their life, i.e. ‘Who do you say that I am?’ (Matthew 16: 15)
I am sure God is posing this same question to all people at every turn of life and He expects an answer from all, the English, Americans, Japanese, Hausas, Scots, Ewe, Ga, etc.
Obviously, because of our common humanity there are things that we share with all the people but there are many things that are unique to each group. It is only by bringing our unique experiences of God together that we are able, to some extent, to appreciate what God is like?