Having spent almost three decades at Kwasizabantu Mission, I noticed among other things that most of the sermons are based on “pet verses” and “pet themes”, all of which support Kwasizabantu Mission works-based salvation message.
If you heard a few of them, you heard them all, and they have a very demoralizing effect.
These sermons, which portray a salvation based on our own merit or performance, typically bring people under condemnation.
There are large numbers of people who, after being exposed to this performance-based salvation, end up suffering from depression.
Tragically, over the years quite a number of people – who at certain times of their lives have been exposed to these sermons – have even committed suicide.
Let me illustrate with one aspect of KSB preaching: the extreme message of “ostracizing” your family and close relatives …
Here is an excerpt from [the summary of] a sermon entitled “Caleb, man of courage and humility”, preached on Sunday, 28 July 2013 at Kwasizabantu Mission by Dr Albu van Eeden (co-founder and CEO at “Doctors for Life” NGO):
“You must know what it means to turn your back on your own people who do not follow God wholeheartedly. If you and I want to follow God we must go through this process to turn our backs on our closest relatives who are friends with the world.”
This teaching of ostracizing one’s family and close relatives, which has been advocated by Erlo Stegen and his leadership since the 1960’s, has had devastating consequences in the lives of many people.
The children, family members and marriage partners who became the victims of this destructive practice have suffered severely, with some of them becoming alcoholics and others also eventually committing suicide. I know of at least two young men who committed suicide after having been ostracised.
Many of the victims of this teaching are still, to this day, tormented and struggling to cope with life after having been ostracized and rejected by their loved ones …
Contrary to Erlo Stegen’s extreme teaching of rejecting and shunning family members, the Lord Jesus Christ NEVER commanded his followers to ostracize their relatives.
In Matthew 18:12-13 He relates to his disciples the parable of the lost sheep, admonishing them to seek those who have left the fold and who have gone astray.
In the very next verse (verse 14), He also includes the children: “Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish.”
Christ was a friend of, reached out to, and deeply loved sinners, including the heathen, prostitutes, publicans (bar owners / bar tenders) and tax collectors, who were looked down upon and shunned by the Pharisees.
Didn’t He instruct us to follow His example?
In Matthew 23:27 He rebukes the Pharisees for their lack of love and mercy towards others: “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness”