A day of rest in the green hills of Rwanda
Trip Start Apr 02, 2014
33Trip End May 07, 2014
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Where I stayed
Hotel Chez Lando Kigali
Read my review - 4/5 stars
Read my review - 4/5 stars
The four of us started out toward Giti. Patrick phoned his father and found that the usual road to Giti was in very bad shape due to the recent rains. So an alternate route, that drives beyond the mountain on which Giti stands and approaches it from a back angle; a little longer perhaps but less rutted. It rained lightly as we left Kigali and took the paved road out of town. It gained in intensity as we drove to the point that when we turned off the paved road onto dirt, it was raining steadily.
I showed Ndeo how to use the windshield defroster and defogger. I’ve written about this before: most drivers in sub-Saharan Africa don’t understand how this works. They usually keep the blower turned off and also turned to prevent fresh air from interring from outside. This means when a heavy rain begins the windshield fogs up. The usual combination of a foggy windscreen and used up wiper blades, means there ends up being a lot of guesswork involved in driving. This is not reassuring when going up a wet clay road on the mountainside with no guardrails….
As if on cue, just as we pulled in at the Church hall at 9:30, the rain stopped, so we could disembark and enter the hall without getting soaked. We greeted everyone all around, and waited for the van to arrive from Kayenzi, which it did a few minutes later. We started our service at 10:30. They sang hymns in Kinyarwanda, and we in French. After an opening prayer M. Sibobugingo gave a sermonette about purity.
After the service ended we took a short break to stretch and then while the children played outside, the adults reconvened for a Q&A Bible Study, which I conducted.
Some of the questions included:
1. What is the difference between the offerings associated with God’s tithe and the festival tithe? My answer: although offerings are sometimes mentioned at the same time as tithes, they are separate acts. I explained this in some detail and then took some follow-up questions.
2. Psalm 60:4 talks about God giving a banner to those that fear Him. What is that banner? My answer: It’s a symbol of refuge and protection as in Jeremiah 4:6 ("standard" instead of banner, same meaning).
3. Mark 1:6 says John the Baptiste drank no alcohol, was he a Nazarite? Are there any Nazarites in the Church today? My answer: Actually it’s Luke 1:15 that say he was to drink no alcohol. Numbers 6:1-12 talks about the Nazarite vow, which includes not cutting one’s hair and not touching dead bodies. John’s parents were told only that he was to drink no alcohol; the other restrictions are not enjoined. So it’s possible John was a Nazarite but we can’t be sure. There are no Nazarites in the Church today; we believe the New Testament says we should not make vows: Jesus said we should not swear at all, and taking a vow was a kind of swearing an oath before God (Matthew 5:34; Numbers 30:2-3).
4. Science tells us the earth orbits around the sun. But Psalm 19:6-7 says the sun rises and moves and sets. Is there a contradiction between the Bible and science? My answer: The Bible is always true but it is not intended to be a science textbook. It sometimes uses poetic language and common expressions. Today we still say "the sun rises", we don’t say “the earth has rotated enough that the sun has again become visible on the horizon.” We know what we mean.
5. What is the meaning of the “morning star” that God will give those who overcome, in Revelation 2:28? My answer: Jesus is called the morning star in Revelation 22:16. Peter seems to refer to the resurrection as the “morning star” rising in our hearts, in 2 Peter 1:19. So the morning star is probably a reference to a both these things at the return of Christ to earth and the first resurrection.
These questions and several follow-ups took about an hour to answer. We will have another Q&A on the first day of Unleavened Bread.
Since we won’t be able to meet all together for dinner Monday night, I asked each person to describe how he came to an understanding of the Bible that led them to the Church. The stories were fascinating: coming across a French Plain Truth magazine, hearing a radio broadcast of the World Tomorrow in French on the radio while studying in Belgium, being struck by the good example of a Church member in Rwanda. There are many ways that people are drawn to the truth in the Bible. It was a most encouraging conversation.
Finally we shook hands and waved and then started out down the mountain side once again. On the way down the rain stopped completely and the clouds parted and shrunk. We had some of the breathtakingly beautiful views that come in rain-cleared mountain air: the lush earth tones of green and brown, the bright blue of the sky, the brilliant white of the clouds. There is something particular about the light on the equator; it is exceptionally vibrant and bold.
We didn’t order brochettes because we didn’t want to wait an hour; our meals finally arrived after 30 minutes. We’d have been complaining in the States about the slow service, but here we were excited that it only took half an hour!
I think both of us will sleep well tonight.
My Review Of The Place I Stayed