Bonginkosi Shange

I remember vividly when I enrolled at ZEBS back in 2013. I went there to be with other students and while away my time.

Little did I know that Jesus Christ was about to enter into my life.

Our teachers told us the ZEBS theme was simply, “What does the Bible say?” I started to ask myself is there anything important about reading the Bible? And I started to read my Bible with one aim in mind: to know God.

The more I read and listened, the more I realized that, as Proverbs 14:27 says, “the fear of the Lord is the foundation of life, it turns away man from the snares of death.” For me to run away from spiritual death, I needed to receive Jesus Christ. It is He alone who can provide us with spiritual survival long after our bodies are in the ground.

You know, you can use corruption, bribery, or money to get anything you want in this world, but you can’t use any of that to receive salvation. Only Jesus can provide this. I’m so thankful for my teachers at ZEBS for showing me this.

Meshack Ngcobo, ZEBS graduate

After attending ZEBS (Zion Evangelical Bible School), Reverend Meshack Ngcobo left his leadership position in a large Zion church of 20,000 members for the purpose of teaching the truth of God’s word.

The church he now leads has 300 to 400 members.

Speaking to ZEMA interns, Rev. Ngcobo stated, “You see all these people? They know the truth because [a ZEMA missionary] brought the truth to me. Now I can bring the truth to them.”

Zion churches often splinter over prideful self-assertion when a leader desires the prestige of pastoring his own congregation. However, sometimes, as in Rev. Ngcobo’s case, divisions might also be the consequence of pastors finding freedom from animistic practices that oppose Biblical truth. We know that God will honor Rev. Ngcobo’s decision to prioritize truth over prestige.

Reverend Emmanuel Mathe

Rev. Mathe joined the Sunbury ZEBS in 2001 and graduated in 2005. Here’s what he had to say:

“Before coming to ZEBS, I didn’t know the truth and the Bible. I also worshipped the ancestors. Since coming to ZEBS, I understand salvation and what the Bible says. I now have the courage and understanding to teach the truth of what the Bible says about ancestor worship and salvation. If people don’t agree with me, I will continue to teach the truth.”

His daughter, Philile Mthethwa, is now attending Sunbury ZEBS (2018).

The Mhlongo family

In 2009, Samukelo Mhlongo—then president of the Association of Tertiary Zion Students at University of KwaZulu-Nata—contacted Greg Seghers. This was the moment that opened the doors for ZEMA to begin working with students in this nationally recognized organization.

Samukelo began attending ZEBS and brought his father, mother, and two brothers—Simangaliso and Ndumiso—to the ZEBS at KwaMashu. Four of the five family members graduated between 2012 and 2014.

When he first came to ZEBS, Simangaliso was a particularly outspoken student who regularly questioned the biblical view of the veneration of one’s ancestors. At his graduation, though, Simangaliso testified that through ZEBS he received Christ as his savior, had given up the practices of ancestral worship, and was blessed to preach the Gospel to his congregation.

That same day, Ndumiso expressed his thanks for ZEBS, stating: “My family is not the same because of the truths we learned through the Bible’s teachings.”