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Spiritual giant Prof E. H. Guti leaves lasting legacy

By Prof Solomon Chimange

On the 5th day of July 2023 a dark cloud covered the nation of Zimbabwe.

The great tree has fallen and we are left with nothing but memories. As an individual I see Prof Ezekiel H Guti as a national hero because he led to the infrastructural and academic development of Zimbabwe as well as bringing our nation on the map of the world as a church founder and a church planter. Never in the history of Zimbabwe has there been a person who managed to be a visionary of a church that spread to over 14 nations and states except Guti so indeed he is our hero.
We are today grateful to remember before God the life of one of his saints. Up to a good old age he abode among us imitating his Master’s example, going about doing good work and spreading the gospel of salvation. Our eyes see him no more, he no longer passes in and out, showing us daily what it is to walk with God.

But our hearts are glad for him yet and we wish to give the expression of our gratitude to God for his gift and to recount the chief services he has been permitted to render to the Church of God in the world at large. There have not been too many modern African preachers who exemplified the pure Biblical principles of ecclesiastics. Among those few it is a notable fact that Proff Ezekiel Handinawangu Guti was one of them. Although he is now in his glory state his influence will remain for insurmountable times. He was a man of God who gave his life as a living proof of an active and caring pastoral ministry.
His life
Ezekiel Handinawangu Guti was born on 5 May 1923 in Ngaone Chipinge in the then Rhodesia. He was first married to Carol Guti and they had seven children before she departed to be with the Lord in 1964. It is depicted that Ezekiel and Carol shared a wonderful bond and intimate love as expagorated by the fact that Ezekiel mourned Carol for 15 years before he married another wife.

This also shows that Guti was a deeply religious man who respected the marriage institution. After the death of Ezekiel Guti’s first wife, Carol, he married Eunor Guti. (Source: The Sunday MailMoreover, Ezekiel’s decision to remarry after the loss of Carol led him to form a lifelong partnership with Eunor Guti, who became his current wife.

The depth of their relationship and their contributions within the religious sphere are widely recognized.However, the focus on Guti’s public life and spiritual achievements has limited information regarding his first marriage and children.Despite the lack of extensive details, it is clear that Ezekiel Guti’s first wife, Carol, played a significant role in shaping his personal life and family dynamics.Ultimately leading him on a path of faith and leadership within the Pentecostal movement. Apostle Guti lived a life of ,moderation, chastity and peace as seen in his two marriages. Never has there been any marital scandal in his life.

His Ministry Life

Ezekiel Handinawangu Guti Founded the Zimbabwe Assemblies of God Africa church (ZAOGA) on 12 May 1960 in Bindura under a gum tree. It was a very small church with little or no significance. Taking from Biblical verbatim the church began as small as a mustard seed but it grew into a huge and giant tree. By the time of his demise the church has grown to include many nations in all continents of the world. From the pulpit Guti systematically expounded the scriptures, seeing himself not so much as a Bible teacher but as an evangelist.

Behind his pulpit ministry lay a life of secret and public prayer and married to it was the practical caring and teaching ministry He and Eunor exercised among people throughout their lifetime. He has also founded various ministries including Forward in Faith Children’s Home, Children’s Ministry, Forward in Faith Christian College (Christ for Zimbabwe College secondary school), Africa Christian Business Fellowship, the [ Gracious Women’s Fellowship], along with the Husband’s Agape International Fellowship.

His Character

Ezekiel Guti was a man of dignity and yet there was nothing stuffy about his life. He did not showcase a life of affluence, splendor and show off. He repeatedly told his congregants that he was not the founder of ZAOGA God was. I believe he understood what true holiness was.

To him it meant being serious about the things of God and disciplined in personal habit but it did not mean being joyless and artificial. He was a man of good humor, a lover of practical jokes a family man and a father par excellence.

In a nutshell Guti was a quintessential teacher and evangelist who is regarded as the father of Charismatic Evangelical Pentecostalism. Indeed Zimbabwe has lost an icon.

May His Soul rest in Peace

Proffesor Solomon Chimange is a Practical Theologian by profession, he is the founder and Senior Pastor of New Life Christian Fellowship. He is also the Director of Carmel Bible Institute Southern Africa a College that trains pastors and ministry workers. He can be contacted at revschimange@gmail.com

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