Today there are a number of ecological hermeneutics, such as the Exeter project (UK), the
Earth Bible project (Australia), the anti-ecological readings and the eco-feminist readings.
Whilst these trends provide Christianity with valuable ecological insights, they tend to be
more global than specific. The Exeter project claims even to search for the ‘universal’ ecomeaning of the scriptures. Thus, every community should learn from them and try to develop
its ecological hermeneutical framework, which can sustainably address its contextual issues.
This article explores whether elements of traditional Africa can be transformed into a valuable
hermeneutical framework of ecological sustainability for Christianity in Africa. African
traditional societies were built upon a threefold worldview, namely (1) the sacredness of all life
(moral or spiritual dimension of nature), (2) the pre-eminence of the community over individual
interests and (3) the cosmological dimension of the chieftaincy (governance). In the process of the
Christianisation of Africa, this framework by which African people make sense of the world
became so impaired that the Africans ceased to understand their world through their own
cultural systems. With a proper re-configuration in dialogue with a sound biblical green
theology, this triad can be turned into an effective hermeneutical vehicle of African churches’
engagement for a sustainable life in Africa.
INTRADISCIPLINARY AND/OR INTERDISCIPLINARY IMPLICATIONS: This article explores whether
elements of traditional Africa can be transformed into a valuable hermeneutical framework of
ecological sustainability for Christianity in Africa. It draws on ecological hermeneutics that
exist in the theological disciplines. It involves the disciplines of biblical exegesis and ecological
hermeneutics, African hermeneutics and insights from sustainability theories.