“Central South Africa”
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BIPOC Voices in the Victorian Periodical Press
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III.—Central South Africa.
2. DIPHUKWE'S ADDRESS.
Having taken up the several points of Mr. Hepburn's discourse, and endeavoured to fix them upon the minds and hearts of his hearers by urging their importance as vital truths, the teacher proceeded to refer to the influence which those truths had exercised on his own course of life.
"Once he was an elephant hunter, now he was a hunter of men. Once he sought only his own profit, now he sought the profit of others. Lechulatebe had known him as an elephant hunter but not as a Christian. When Lechulatebe knew him he had come to beg hunting ground that he might get lots of ivory and make himself rich. But all his people died by the fever, and he got such a great fright that he had made up his mind never to return to the river again. He never should have returned had he not learned to know Jesus Christ. What the love of ivory could not do the love of Jesus Christ had done. The love of Christ had brought him again to the town of the Batauana, and a wagon-load of ivory could not have brought him. He told how the love of Christ had conquered him, wild as he once was. He told how he went to the school to be taught by Mr. Mackenzie that he might know how to teach others. How, when at the great meeting of all the baruti (teachers) at Kuruman, they were asked who would volunteer for the new mission to the Batauana, his heart said to him, 'You must go.' But he had got a second coward heart that said, 'Don't go; the river kills people.' But the love of Jesus Christ conquered, and, although he did not hide his fear, he had volunteered to go in and seek a place where his wife and children could live in safety. 'To-day,' he resumed, 'the Bamangwaketse, the Bakwena, and the Bamangwato—all your own people—have all got teachers, and are learning the Word of God; and to-day—this day of God—the white teacher has come to you with a word from the great ones of the churches of England to say, ' Where can the teachers live?" and with a word from the living God, to say, "The Good Shepherd, Jesus Christ, who is my Son, gave His life for the sheep;" and you are the sheep, Batauana. For myself, I say that we ought to be glad and thankful to the people of England who have brought this good word to us, and when we get hold of it to understand it, we ought to imitate them and carry it on to others; for God has said the whole world must be filled with the glad sound of it.'
"The astonished people listened with curiosity and wondering amazement. It was not only the new and wonderful words spoken by a white man in their courtyard and in their own tongue that day that astonished them, but that a black man, one who, though not of the same tribe, was one of the same language, that he also should have the selfsame news to tell, while he told it in his own words—it was this that made it such a wonderful thing to their ears. As you can imagine, much curious comment was put forth, but the prevailing feeling was one of amazement. 'We expected,' said they, 'to hear about white people and white people's customs; and you spoke to us about our own customs and about ourselves, strange words such as we had never dreamed hearing.'"
Digital Publication Details
Title: “Central South Africa”
Subtitle(s): “Diphukwe's Address”
Creator(s): Anonymous; Diphukwe
Publication date: (1878) 2022
Digital publishers: One More Voice, COVE
Critical encoding: Trevor Bleick, Kenneth C. Crowell, Kasey Peters, Adrian S. Wisnicki
One More Voice identifier: liv_025059
Cite (Chicago Author-Date): Anonymous, and Diphukwe. (1878) 2022. “Central South Africa.” Edited by Trevor Bleick, Kenneth C. Crowell, and Kasey Peters. In “BIPOC Voices,” One More Voice, solidarity edition; Collaborative Organization for Virtual Education (COVE). https://onemorevoice.org/html/bipoc-voices/digital-editions-soas/liv_025059_HTML.html.
Rights: Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International
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