Modern Day Prophet

Nelson Mendela

A modern day prophet can be seen as someone who shows total obedience with God, who shows compassion,  commitment, and boldness or courage to act.

"It always seem impossible until its done."

Nelson Mandela born in Mvezo, South Africa. He was not born a prophet, but his actions determined his fate over time.. Mandela was known to question God in early stages of his life, however, came to accept him in various ways. He began to stand for justice when he lost his job because he stood up to the dominant white magistrate and his unreasonable demands for work. As a child he attended a Methodist school where his early senses of righteousness and being just are formed. He attended church every Sunday in his youth, and Christianity became an important part of his life. Mandela stated “I saw that virtually all of the achievements of Africans seemed to have come about through the missionary work of the Church.” As a young boy this is where he sees that work through the church is the most productive and beneficial form of work available. As a young man, he also sees much destruction and discrimination towards the black communities of South Africa and wonders why the is so much resentment towards them. This is what marks the beginning of his voice of justice and equality.

It is not until later in his life that his faith develops in to becoming the prophet we know him as today. He studies politics and begins forming an opposition to the racial government parties in South Africa. Mandela helped found the Congress of the People, calling for an end to the racial and segregation era in South Africa’s history. This helped in the creation of a democratic, non-racial state and this became Mandela’s ideology. He received multiple bans on public appearances while travelling to raise awareness of his idealistic party. The bans given to him by police in hopes he would give up. In 1956, Mandela was arrested for high treason against his state. The trial began in January 1958 and was dropped by August. In 1960, Mandela’s group, as well as other political groups campaigned for an anti-pass campaign and burned the passes that the African’s were required to carry. Mandela burned his pass publicly, and he was arrested on “martial law” charges. In 1961, Mandela and other political leaders were found not guilty and released. Mandela went on with his political life and began secretly organizing a stay-at-home strike. When the government caught wind of this, a warrant was made for his arrest. Inspired by Fidel Castro’s movements in Cuba, Mandela began forming up with the South African Communist Party (SACP) and used their armed weapons to sabotage the government’s agencies. Bombing military installations, power plants, telephone lines and transportation routes at night, he described using sabotage to minimize casualties of citizens while placing maximum pressure on the government. He describes special instructions were given out that no loss of life is to occur and that it offered the best hope for reconciliation among races. He was arrested again in 1962 and charged with inciting workers strikes and leaving the country without permission. During his hearings the people demonstrated outside the courtrooms and he himself used his mitigation pleas as a time to give political speeches. He was sentenced to 5 years in prison. While serving his time, him and members of his party were charged with initiating guerrilla warfare against the government, and Mandela and his members accused the government of sabotage. They used the trial as a representation to their political cause to end discrimination. They were found guilty and sentenced to life in prison, rather than death. They were sent to a prison on Robben Island, where they were harassed by white prison guards. They spent days doing hard manual labour. Initiating the “University of Robben Island” the prisoners shared their areas of expertise with others. He was sent to Victor Verster Prison in 1988 and members of his party worked on freeing Mandela. He was finally freed in 1990. In 1991, Mandela signed a peace treaty with opposing political leader Buthelezi, since violence had broken about over the parties disagreements. In the coming years more and more violence occurred as Mandela’s party became stronger and stronger, it was more and more opposed by the white dominant parties. Hiring a political advisor in 1994, Mandela ran for presidency. He was elected in 1994 and headed a Government of National Unity. As President he continued his promise for a multicultural democracy and he saw national reconciliation as his first task. Mandela assured South Africa’s white population that they were protected and represented in what he called “the rainbow nation” He sought the ideals for all and through pressure he always maintained a cool head and found the most beneficial solution for everyone. A man that wished for equality for all found it.

Mandela and the SACP

Looking through Mandela's life, it is  extremely clear that the morality behind those actions is to eliminate the segregation of his fellow African-Americans. His of morality is justified by that we humans, are all but one race. Mandela was able to clearly express the idea to all that "all human beings are equally created in the likeness and the image of God"(Genesis 1:26-27). This can prove that we humans were created equally by God with similar physical appearances and that we should be treated equally. In addition, Mandela's actions also allowed African-Americans to escape a society where only the white people were favoured. This action is justified by (Deuteronomy 10:17):"For the Lord your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great, the mighty, who is not partial and takes no bribe." This verse explains that God is not impartial with his love and that everyone will obtain the same amount of love from him. Thus, through his chivalrous actions, Mandela was able to bring forth the world that was said in this verse to his people. Lastly, Mandela expressed his ideas of freedom through acts of forgiveness. Through this verse "Be kind to one another, ender-hearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you"(Ephesians 4:32) Mandela was able to send the message that the victims of racism had the right to be angry but must also forgive. It is true that victims of racism see racists as someone who does not deserve forgiveness; however, God will always show forgiveness and mercy, thus since we are created in the likeness of God, we should also show forgiveness and mercy to others. In the end, Mandela was clearly demonstrated his traits of being a prophet through his actions. He showed compassion towards his African-Americans who were enduring racism, he showed his commitment by enduring being segregated himself, and he had the courage to act against those who were looking down on his people.  Therefore, the morality of Mandela's actions were certainly true and just; it was definitely the reason why he was seen as a modern day prophet.

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