It should be noted at the outset that ""Muhammadanism"" and ""Muhammadans"" are terms offensive to Muslims. The religion is Islam (submission) and a follower of Islam is a Muslim (one who submits). The offence is that the term ""Muhammadan"" creates the impression ""that the founder of the faith has become an object of worship as in Christianity"". In the light of the above it is clear that the area of contact is not merely between Islam and ""the Gospel"" (understood as a message of good news), but between Islam as an ideology on the one hand and on the other hand the Gospel, the church and the political and economic systems with which they go hand in hand.
The rapid growth of African Independent Churches has become one of the most prominent features of Christianity on this continent. In South Africa, in particular, the statistical data reflect this remarkable increase. Between 1940 and 1960 the overall IC membership increased from 9,6% to approximately 20% of the total African population, while Methodist membership remained static at 12%. During the past two decades the number of Independent Churches in South Africa has leapt from 2 000 to an estimated 4 000, with a current overall membership of between 4 and 5 million.