Shembe, Isaiah

(c. 1870–c. 1960)
   Sect Founder.
   Shembe was born in Natal, South Africa. As a young man he was converted to Christianity and he was baptised in the African Native Baptist Church. He embarked on a career of teaching and healing and soon founded his own organisation based at Ekuphakamen (‘the high place’) near Durban. Known as the Ama-Nazaretha, his followers believed that he was sent from God and born of the Spirit and they followed the Nazarite rules of the Old Testament. Their doctrines were a mixture of traditional African beliefs and Christianity. After Shembe’s death, it was thought that he would rise again and his son succeeded him as leader of the movement.
   G. Oosthuizen, The Theology of a South African Messiah (1967).

Who’s Who in Christianity . 2014.

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