Business, Witchcraft, and Racism with Dennis Tongoi

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At a Glance

One of the easiest ways to experience the power of worldview is to be confronted by another. Today we had the honor of speaking with Dr. Dennis Tongoi from Kenya to hear his take on various issues from both a biblical worldview perspective and a counter-cultural one. In this episode, Dr. Tongoi shares an African purview on race relations in the U.S. and his proposed antidote. Additionally, we hear his thoughts on how to approach business as a Christian whose KPIs (key performance indicators) are deeper than profit, how fear is the antithesis to love, and what he thinks is the most significant difference between Africa and the West.

What You'll Hear
  1. Introduction (1:28)
  2. A story of the transformative power of worldview (10:04)
  3. Money isn’t the problem (16:13)
  4. What is Monday Church in business (18:01)
  5. Your KPI shouldn’t only be revenue (25:13)
  6. Kingdom culture (33:37)
  7. African observations about race relations in America (43:02)
  8. Fear is the opposite of love (52:37)
  9. Conclusion (55:52)

Rev. Canon, Dr. Dennis Tongoi is currently the Executive Director of Root-to-Fruit (R2F) in Kenya. R2F is a leadership development consultancy enabling leaders to align culture to purpose. We recognize dysfunctional relationships caused by conflicting values are the root cause of poorly performing organisations. Therefore, R2F supports leaders to lead a culture transformation process rooted in a Biblical worldview and resulting in restored relationships and trust that accelerate holistic growth of financial, human, social, and environmental capital.

Dennis holds a DTh. in Missiology from the University of South Africa (2017). He is the founding International Director Emeritus of CMS-Africa (2008-2018). He coordinated Samaritan Strategy Africa (2001 to 2014), a movement of over six hundred trainers on Biblical Worldview and Wholistic Discipleship in more than 40 countries in Africa.

Dennis has engaged with several Community Leadership initiatives among them, Board Chair of Carlile College from 2008 to 2011; General Secretary of Christians For A Just Society that mobilized and facilitated Christian professionals in addressing issues of poor governance and corruption. Dennis served as the Business Leadership manager for the Executive MBA program run by the Copenhagen Business School in collaboration with Mount Kenya University (2010-2016). Over 110 CEOs of Kenyan companies have been mentored through this program.

Dennis has been a director at Herbal Garden Ltd, an agribusiness SME established in 2007. Additionally, he is a Certified Professional Mediator (CPM) and has authored several publications related to business and stewardship.

Using the link above, you can read the transcript, listen along, and adjust the speed of the podcast while you listen.

"The primary theme of the Old Testament and New Testament is actually the kingdom of God. And that's what Jesus Christ preached."

Dennis Tongoi (34:17)

Quotes
  • 7:12 “When you plant churches, it’s like getting a jar of water, and filling it full of marbles–you just displace the water, but nothing changes [the water is not transformed]. But discipling the nations is taking a drop of ink and putting it in the jar of water. So discipling changes everything.” Dennis
 
  • 23:25 “So our challenge is not spirituality or making the workplace more spiritual, in fact it’s almost too spiritual. Our challenge is asking–how do the Kingdom Principles of Kingdom relationships work as we deal with our clients. The issue of honesty versus honor, for example.” Dennis
 
  • 26:28 “Capital is not just financial capital. We talk about social capital, which is primarily trust, you know, without trust a business will not move forward. We talk about human capital, financial capital, natural capital, and spiritual capital, so that a CEO sees themselves managing multiple forms of capital.” Dennis
 
  • 31:31 “So profit is a reward for doing the right thing, not the goal. And it allows you to keep doing the right thing. So profit needs to be thought through because profit is not bad. Profit is actually an indicator that you’re actually doing the right thing at the right time in the right way. It’s not a goal. It’s actually a validator.” Dennis
 
  • 34:17 “The good news is actually good news of ‘the kingdom.’ The entire story of the Bible is about the Kingdom of God, right from Genesis one. When we’re given dominion, God is King [all the way] to Revelation. So the primary theme of the Old Testament and New Testament is actually the kingdom of God. And that’s what Jesus Christ preached.” Dennis
 
  • 36:36 “And one common denominator I’ve seen in godly people is their humility. Not so much their pride in keeping certain sets of laws, but the humility.” Dennis
 
  • 38:32 So a biblical worldview includes both the spiritual and natural; God controls both the spiritual and natural world, not just one or the other. Dennis
 
  • 42:09 “And as I’ve observed, again I don’t live in the West, but I’ve had enough contact with the people that I encounter to see the difference. When you come to Africa, you see our material poverty, very, very clearly. For us, we don’t see ourselves as poor. When we come to the West, we immediately see the spiritual and social poverty you have here. It’s very, very, clear to us. You are naked to us spiritually and socially.” Dennis
 
  • 44:49 “Divisions will always be there in society, whether it’s going to be tribal, racial…it’s  a human thing for people that live differently. But what makes the difference in the Kingdom is that when we pray, “Our Father who art in heaven,” it makes you and I brothers… Our brotherhood is based upon the fact we have one, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Dennis
 
  • 49:50 “The God that we worship is the one and many God, unity and diversity, one God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and the fact that this is the nature of reality before the creation of the universe sets up the framework for a unity of diversity. So that was before the beginning. And we know very clearly what you’ve talked about here. And we know that at the end, all the tribes and nations are going to be brought together in one kingdom with one king. That’s where we’re heading. The beginning and the end creates the framework of one nation, with many different people. And how do we have that sort of as the motto in our own nations, we are a nation. But there’s a diversity of people that make up this nation. Because God is Trinity. And Christ is building a kingdom, one kingdom with diverse people.” Darrow
 
  • 53:22 “The opposite of love is not hate; opposite of love is fear.” Dennis

For those who work in business, it is essential to recognize that capital goes beyond the financial. Without trust, or social capital, a business will not succeed. There is also human capital, natural capital, and spiritual capital.

Go Deeper

Mixing God with Money: Strategies for Living in an Uncertain Economy

By Dennis O. Tongoi

Jesus talked more about money than about heaven and hell combined…

King Solomon is the wealthiest man who ever lived. In the book of Proverbs he mentions wealth and poverty as a major theme because of the need to give prudence to the naïve. Naïve Christians often ignore money because they think it is dirty and worldly. But Jesus did not ignore money. He talked more about money than about heaven and hell combined. There are twice as many verses in the Bible about money than there are about faith and prayer combined. We must ‘mix God with Money’ if we are going to live out God’s purposes fully during our time here in this world.

While struggling to get out of a personal financial crisis in the early nineties, Dennis Tongoi discovered truths on “Biblical Stewardship” as a result of his study of the Bible and reading of Christian literature on this topic. Unfortunately many of the books from the West fail to take into consideration the chaotic economies of the Third World; the social/economic context of Africa such as demands of the extended family and the lack of access to credit. The material in this book has grown out of the interactions at seminars held with fellow African believers on the continent as we sought to make the teaching of the Bible relevant to our context.

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The Monday Church Course

The Church is not a building or a Sunday-morning activity; it is the Body of Christ on mission in every sphere of society, every day of the week.

The Monday Church course explores the greatest tool God has given you to impact the world: your work. God intends for your daily work to be for the service of man, the blessing of the nations, and the glory of God.

Monday Church provides a biblical framework for each of us to establish a meaningful, integrated understanding of our life and work. Whatever your work or vocation, God calls you to a new way of living – fully in His presence and for His glory. Also available in Spanish and Arabic!

Get started now with our completely free Monday Church course!

Root To Fruit

Root-to-Fruit’s mission is based on a conviction that God’s truth has the power to transform individuals, organizations, communities and even nations. Organizations are transformed when its leaders and staff confront cultural lies, and instead embody and proclaim God’s biblical truths. Helping organizations to do this is the beating heart of our mission. Understanding a biblical worldview creates space for people to assess their own worldview in contrast to God’s truth.  A biblical worldview begins with two foundational assumptions:

  1. Jesus is King over all, and
  2. His Word is truth.
 

When an organization disciples a culture built on a foundation of these twin truths, its leaders and staff begin to work in harmony, with a common language to flourish.

A biblically empowered worldview reconciles broken relationships with God, self, others and the environment. Out of a renewed sense of identity in God’s image, the leaders and staff improve their spiritual and physical livelihoods through individual responsibility, trust, respect and hard work. Leaders and staff together begin to define the desired transformation, own it and are accountable for the outcome.

The Samaritan Strategy Curriculum

This strategy is one of the most effective and lasting ways to draw people to Christ–it empowers believers to incarnate Jesus’ love. With reminders of biblical truth and practical tools, individuals can begin fully living out their faith within their homes, churches, and communities.

In the parable of the Good Samaritan, there are two categories of people who could demonstrate God’s love to a neighbor: 1) those who supposedly were correct in their beliefs but didn’t live out their faith, and 2) a Samaritan who had questionable beliefs but who actually demonstrated love. After Jesus told the parable, he asked the scholar, which of these represented obedience to the Scripture. The scholar acknowledged that it was the Samaritan. Jesus capped the conversation with a calling to prove our beliefs by how we live.

This is not a salvation by works story. Instead, it is one of the many reminders in the Bible that real faith is verified by how we live. The Samaritan Strategy curriculum includes eight core lessons with additional supplements and is designed for use with churches and Christian leaders. Learn more about the Samaritan Strategy curriculum!

An abbreviated form of this is available in DNA’s training platform through the course Kingdomizer 102: Love in Action.

The Kingdomizer Training Program

More than a million people have now been trained in 115 countries.

Our Kingdomizer Training Program was first designed for missionaries, indigenous pastors, and workers in relief and development. As these individuals explored our basic biblical worldview teaching, they began to experience personal transformation that would ripple into their families, churches, communities, and even nations.

If you have a heart for the poor and a love for the Bible, we invite you to explore how you can be part of God’s transforming work in the world, and learn why thinking about a biblical worldview can make all the difference in people flourishing. Get started with our completely free Kingdomizer Training Program today!

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