Johann Ludwig Krapf

Johann Ludwig Krapf biography, was a missionary explorer in Eastern Africa. Johann was born in a farmer’s family and was raised as a sincere Christian. In his school, he saw a World Atlas and wondered why so few places have been marked in Eastern Africa. He thought, if Eastern Africa hasn’t been explored then the people there must not have heard the Gospel too. That’s how the seeds of his future ministry were sown into his heart. After his theological studies at Tübingen University, he joined the Church Missionary Society (CMS) in 1836.

Birth : 11.01.1810
Home calling : 26.11.1881
Native Place : Tubingen
Country : Germany
Place of Vision : Eastern Africa

Johann’s first posting was in Ethiopia where he reached in 1837. He was taken aback by the false Christianity preached by the local priests to the Oromo tribes. He learned the local Amharic language and made efforts to guide the people towards Biblical Christianity.

He also revised the existing Amharic Bible translation. He solely depended on his faith in God for his survival in missionary expeditions and his experiences are testament to it.

During one of his missionary expeditions, he did not have anything to eat. Suddenly two vultures dropped a dead deer in front of him which he cooked and ate. When he felt thirsty, the monkeys lead him to the nearest river.

He survived the rest of the journey eating grass and ants. When asked how did he survive the hostile forest, he said, “ I believe in the God who sustained Elijah in the wilderness.”

Johann Ludwig Krapf ministry in Africa

Later, in 1844, Johann moved to Mombasa on coastal Kenya. There he lost his wife and child to Malaria. Yet, he continued to learn the local Swahili and Krontul languages and preached the Gospel to them. Most importantly through his missionary expeditions, he developed maps for interiors of Eastern Africa which helped other missionaries to reach these parts.

In 1853, Johann moved back to Germany due to illness. There he continued to do Bible translations into Oromo, Kinika, and Swahili languages and worked as an advisor for East African missions.

Beloved, are you not worried for those parts of your country where the Gospel has no opening?

Take away from the article

God of Elijah, give me the courage to venture into dangerous areas to preach the Gospel. Amen!

Word of Prayer

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