“For whom He foreknew, He also predestined [to be] conformed to the image of His Son,that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.” (Romans 8:29 NKJV) “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5 NKJV) Is it possible that for man to have the mind of Jesus Christ? Is it possible to learn to think like and to be as sensitive as the Master of Masters when he lived in this world as a man like you and me? The above passage from the book of Romans says that God’s purpose for man is that we be conformed to the image of his Son, Jesus Christ. In Philippians 2:5 the apostle Paul tells us that we are to have the same mind that was in Christ Jesus, this reference leads us to understand that it is possible, I am not referring to achieving supreme holiness or becoming perfect and self-sufficient human beings so that we do not commit any sins, because if that were possible then there would be no need for a savior, but for this reason Jesus Christ came to bring light to the dark world that the human mind has become. It would be virtually impossible for the human mind with all its limitations to create a character as complex and enigmatic as Jesus Christ, no man has ever uttered words similar to his. His thoughts and his philosophy of life divided the history of mankind into BC (before Christ) and AD (after Christ), Jesus was an extraordinary man and had a brilliant mind, his words penetrated horizons that were never traveled before in the human mind, and it’s no wonder that the great thinkers and intellectuals who were obstinate in the fight against Christianity in the last days surrendered to the thoughts and philosophy of life that sprung from the mind of this Extraordinary being. But we’ll talk about that on another occasion, we will focus initially on how it would be possible to have a mind like that of Christ. We noted earlier that Romans 8:29 shows that God’s plan for us is that we become like Christ, and Philippians 2:5 is an ordinance for us to have the same mind that was in Jesus Christ, but what mind is this? In Luke 17:21 Jesus says: “The kingdom of God is within you”, so maybe for this reason it was a shock for many to understand that He was the great liberator of Israel spoken of in the scriptures, because Jesus was referring to an inner realm, not visible to human eyes, a kingdom that is the human mind, a place increasingly forgotten by man. Jesus came to take us on a journey to the imaginary, he came to teach us to roam the universe obscured by the system that dictates the life of humanity in our day, he came to teach us that intelligence and wisdom are two different things in the theater of life, he came to teach us that bias (regardless of race, social status, musical styles...) is the wall that blocks the path that leads man to his psychic freedom. But how can we get the mind of Christ? If we empty ourselves and disconnect from any bias look between the lines of the four Gospels on the life of Master Jesus, we will surely hear in the recesses of our soul a voice whispering softly, “Follow me”. The Master makes an invitation for us to follow him, to imitate him, to be fishers of souls, to be human torches that take light to the most obscure places in the human mind. The mind of Christ begins to be in those who learn every day to be pioneers of themselves, for the kingdom of God is within us.
CONTINUES IN NEXT ISSUE...
The arrival of secular recording companies to the evangelical segment rekindles debate about separating Christian and worldly music. By Mauricio Zágari (originally published in March 2011) Gone are the days when Christian religious music was artistic expression, restricted to religious ceremonies and temples, which found its enthusiasts only among the faithful. In the era of digital music and consumer culture, classic hymns have been replaced by the music flavor of the week. Cathedral conductors and organists have given way to artists with fan clubs and hip haircuts, and churches to TV show auditoriums. The term “sacred music” seems to be a thing of the past, as the word “gospel” now defines new trends - and the bandwagon, the motivations of many who now work in this is essentially financial. Fact is that the so-called Brazilian gospel market has ripened to a business that generates millions of dollars per year. Thus, secular record labels have begun to include religious music in their rosters, breaking the old evangelical taboo that you cannot mix praise with anything, according to Christian jargon, “from the world”. With an eye on the fat slice of the Christian market, traditional heavyweights of the music industry such as Sony Music and Som Livre are riding on the wave of gospel music and have placed their bets on profiting from whatever this niche can provide. The most visible example of this is the Diante do Trono Praise Ministry, formed by members of the Lagoinha Baptist Church in Belo Horizonte (MG). The group, which is considered an icon in Brazilian praise and worship, has signed a distribution deal with Som Livre, a company that belongs to the Globo organizations - and it’s precisely Globo, which is often demonized by many evangelicals. The Globo company roster is already quite ecumenical including Roman Catholic priest singers Robson and Fabio de Mello. The goal, according to the ministry’s statement, is to expand the group’s activity in the music market. But this partnership has opened up areas coveted by any pop artist in the country, such as appearances on Globo’s television programs and even appearances on the oft disputed Sunday afternoon Domingão do Faustão TV show. “It’s about getting to places that have not yet been reached by our message”, said pastoress and singer Ana Paula Valadão, group leader at the time of signing of the contracts. “The idea is to combine the excellence in our productions with what Som Livre has in terms of distribution”. This arrangement sums up in practice what many top Christian artists and secular corporations seek. The artists are delighted with the possibility of having access to a more professional production and distribution system - and, of course (and almost no one today has modesty to hide it) making a profit. The big secular corporations are more direct: the focus is on the evangelical market which has not stopped growing in Brazil. Last year alone, the gospel music industry made somewhere around R$ 500 million. Program ratings for presenter Fausto Silva’s show jumped 3 ratings points only in Sao Paulo during the episode in which Ana Paula and Diante de Trono appeared. It is estimated that more than a million people around the city tuned in to the small screen during the 15 minutes that the band was singing its praise songs.
When pastoress and composer Ludmila Ferber was on Fausto Silva’s show one Sunday afternoon in November, promoting her new CD on Som Livre on air, she shared the mike with Father Fabio de Melo and the stage with the traditional dancers of the program, all dressed in revealing outfits exhibiting sensuality. Her presence on the show generated commentaries on social networking sites. Pentecostal star Cassiane appeared on SBT’s Raul Gil Show, to promote her CD Viva. And to close off the year - literally - Aline Barros was on Show da Virada - Globo’s New Year’s Eve show on the last day of 2010. Sony Music Gospel Department executive director Maurício Soares, confirms the interest of secular companies in the segment. “Sony has followed the development of the gospel music market in Brazil at a distance. In the United States, the major player in the Christian market is the Provident-Integrity label”, he says. According to him, who has had stints in some of the major Protestant labels, the implantation of a Christian music core is the result of the process of Sony approaching the niche. 13 contracts have been signed with singers and groups, including Cassiane, the Renascer Praise band, Elaine de Jesus, Damares, Resgate (group formed by ex-bishops of the Renascer church), Marcelo Aguiar, DJ Alpiste, duo Rayssa & Ravel and veteran Álvaro Tito. The result without much delay was that in less than a year of activities, Sony Music became one of the three highest-grossing organizations in the gospel market. PROFESSIONALIZATION In the wake of an increasingly professionalized system of production and distribution involving radio, events and partnerships with sales outlets and the media, Brazilian gospel music has shown growing momentum in the midst of a market in crisis. According to the Brazilian Association of Record Manufacturers (ABPD), gospel artists were prominently between the 20 best-selling albums of the country in 2009 and were responsible for an annual growth of 8%. An example is Regis Danese whose CD Compromisso has sold over a million copies. Pagode group Só pra Contrariar made him nationally known when they covered his hit song “Faz um milagre em mim”. And the visibility of such artists (or worshipers, as most of them prefer to be called) has tended to increase even more outside of gospel circles. In April 2011, the first Gospel Music Expo - International Fair of Artists, Ministries and Christian music products took place in Anhembi, Sao Paulo. Black gospel music specialist agency MR1 promoted the event which aims to bring together the cream of Brazilian gospel music. “We will have the presence of singers, record companies, producers, musicians, distributors and the evangelical public at large”, Luciana Mazzarelli, MR1 director said at that time. “Brazilian gospel music already competes with secular singers and bands on equal terms. This is seen from the success that some of our artists have attained outside of the strictly religious circle”. At least when speaking, the arrival of heavyweight record companies to the sector has not bothered the traditional labels of the genre. “From a business standpoint, the entry of new companies is always good. It makes us better professionally” says Grace Music executive manager Ana Paula Porto. She attributes the phenomenon to the increase in piracy and illegal music downloading, with a consequent drop in sales. “Major labels like Sony and Som Livre, began to see the gospel market as an escape hatch for their businesses. While piracy in secular circles has reached astronomical figures of 40% to 50%, the gospel statistic is no more than fifteen percent”, he explains. Line Records general director Sergio Lima, confirms: “In general, the competition ends up being good for business improvement. Because our goal is to spread the Word of God through music, we do not care if others also want to invest in it”. For pastor, singer and songwriter André Valadão, the fall in sales is everyone’s concern. With a six year solo career since leaving the Diante do Trono ministry - Ana Paula’s brother - believes that his visibility has secured a good position for him: “My work has always sold a little more with every new release”, he says. Valadão
is optimistic about the current state of affairs. “The Church has reached many more people. Brazil is a multicultural country, where musical styles pop up everywhere”. Gospel music’s growing relevance - even among those who just enjoy the music, without any faith involvement – has made the entry of secular companies in this niche somewhat predictable. In Onimusic chief executive Nelson Tristão’s opinion: “It’s quite natural”. He also does not consider this trend a problem. “If someone is really doing God’s work, then that person or company is more collaborative instead of competitive - because ultimately, we all work for the Lord”. “POWER OF MONEY” The truth is that everyone is speaking cautiously about the entry of the secular companies into the niche. Guitarist Assembly of God pastor and professional musician Claudio Tupinambá says that the presence of multinational music companies in the gospel artist industry may even have a spiritual significance. “If God used unbelievers like Cyrus to fulfill his will and continue his work, I do not see why this cannot happen now”, he adds, recalling the biblical story of the Persian king who allowed the people of Israel to rebuild their nation. The concern of much older musicians who began their careers before the explosion of the gospel music industry in Brazil is with the spirituality of the artists under contract. Pastor and musician Guilherme Kerr, one of the icons of the Vencedores por Cristo ministry - the main reference for Brazilian gospel music in the 60s and 70s - said that he isn’t afraid of the phenomenon, “But the power of the love of money is often cruel”, he extends. He points out that the Christian artist must always bear in mind that his ultimate goal may be just the extreme opposite of the goals of large corporations. “You can make yourself open to dangerous opportunism”, singer-songwriter Gerson Borges, another name closely linked to the development of gospel music in the country, warns. With ten years on the road, gospel singer Day Domingues is emphatic in her analysis: “For the record company in question, it is obvious that its only commitment is to selling CDs and the resulting profits through this”. She questions any commitments with the Gospel that companies which have invested in religious music may have. “They promote artists who will sign autographs, sell records and be applauded in the name of Christ”. Questioning of the same kind also comes from musician Carlinhos Veiga. As a Presbyterian minister with theological training and a 25 year singing career spanning six albums he fears that many colleagues in ministry could negotiate their artistic vocations in the name of good contracts: “With this type of pressure, will they remain faithful to the ministry that they received from God or will they be motivated to perform only when there is profit and visibility?”. Known for his more critical stance towards the gospel market, singer and composer John Alexander worries about what he sees are financial interests having a high priority in the work of Christian artists. “This nearness to secular companies can be productive, as long as the profit is not the goal, but the consequence”. Author of hits such as “Essência de Deus”, “É proibido pensar” and “Pra cima Brasil”, the artist brought another aspect of the question to attention: “Remember that what the gospel music industry produces ends up being sung in the overwhelming majority of evangelical churches. Leaving this repertoire to the discretion of record companies without commitment to biblical truth, and subject to market pressures is, in the least, something to reflect on”, he adds. Music producer Mauricio Barbosa, who has worked with top evangelical artists such as Aline Barros, Claudio Claro, Sérgio Lopes and Cassiane, advocates a balance, including the establishing of the boundary between what is valid or not in terms of music. “There are secular songs that speak of common grace, which show traces of God in humanity. There are good lyrics that speak of love, of nature, and of genuine feelings. And the truth is that you cannot listen to all gospel music”, he points out. Currently working as a producer at AD Studios, he recalls that when he converted, he threw away all of his secular music LPs. Pastors, at the time,
convinced him that all of them had satanic influence. Today, more mature, he thinks differently. “There is no E minor that sins or C major that is filled with the Spirit. That is, music is music. What makes it good or bad is the human being”. Tweeted The presence of groups and gospel singers on TV shows, such as the Show da Virada and the Domingão do Faustão, has generated a lot of controversy on internet social networks. On the one hand, some argue that it is a victory for evangelism. On the other hand, many people see it as just marketing. On Twitter, which allows real-time interaction, the presence of pastoress and singer Ludmila Ferber on the program in November, generated comments of ecstasy as well as disapproval. In straightforward language that characterizes this type of communication, a pastor of the Foursquare Church wrote: “ Singer Ludmila Ferber did well, very well, her career will grow significantly, we don’t even need to talk about her earnings. But for the Kingdom of God, it’s irrelevant”. The comment resulted in immediate reaction, which led to several replies and retorts. Another internet user identified as @spaceeeh reflected the thoughts of many: “It was a great blessing, I believe that lives were changed through the words of the servant”. Ana Paula Valadão, singer of the Diante do Trono ministry - a group that has also been on the Domingão stage - posted a series of texts during Ludmila’s presentation and concluded that the name “Ferber” was the fifth most mentioned word on twitter at that time. She wrote: “@pastoraludmila releasing LIFE, HOPE and POWER of TRANSFORMATION! Hallelujah”. @Willrp16 on the contrary said: “CHEAP ECUMENISM!!!!!”, proving that the approval of the presence of Christian artists on unholy ground is still far from unanimity. Statistics for the gospel music industry in Brazil R$ 500 million was the annual revenue 8% was the annual growth of the segment 15% were the losses to piracy. In secular music, it was 50%. Source: http://www.cristianismohoje.com.br/materia.php?k=736
(by Marcos Veríssimo) Where, when and how did IMMORTAL FAITH start? What was the motivation behind forming the band? Immortal Faith came together out of a desire to play a style that wasn’t widely adopted by Christian bands in Manaus. Because of our lyrical content that explicitly speaks of God’s love, we’ve started winning over the Christian public at shows, both inside and outside the church. Were you Christians from childhood? If not tell us about your conversions. What was your first contact with music? Gil - “I’ve always had Christian ties. Since childhood my grandfather, my grandmother and my parents had always taken me to worship, and but it was only when I was 15 that I truly accepted Jesus Christ through the Ozza7 ministry, a band of my good friend Roberto (Cocca). Music’s always been present in my family. I used to hear my father singing country music, and since then I’d always wanted to sing too but I’ve moved on to a different musical style, namely rock (no limits)”. Mark - I was baptized as a Roman Catholic when I was a child. At age 12, I began going to the Assembly of God churches, where I was captivated with the teachings and the ways in which the Lord was worshipped. At 16 I got my first guitar and since then I haven’t let go of music. Sidney - I started playing drums when I was 17, because I like it and I haven’t stopped since. Unfortunately it took me a while before I truly got to know God. At 17 I was attending the Árvore da Vida (Tree of Life) Church; I converted and started playing for my first ministry called Incensário. Today I’m in a ministry that I feel more a part of. Marlon - I was born into a Roman Catholic environment, but I couldn’t relate much to Roman Catholic doctrine. At 18 I started going to evangelical churches, and I converted at the Restauração (Restoration) church, but it was at the Sabaoth Missionary Base that I found my true “self ”. My musical life began at age 15 when I used to play in school bands, I have improved, and now I play in this ministry which I love and I dedicate a lot of myself to. Neto - Since I was a child, my family’s been going to church, and praise’s been part of my life. My mother listened to many gospel CDs, and I listened to the band Novo Som and followed them. But during my teens and after a long period of depression I finally found something that really changed my life. Jesus Christ cleaned me and healed my wounds. I’m very grateful to brother Fernando. During a service when I was 14 the preacher looked at me and told me that God had given me the gift of music, but at the time I couldn’t play any instruments, let alone sing. But the words of the man pounded on in my mind and I went after what Jesus had set aside for me. And now I write lyrics and melodies that are for the Lord of my life.
What were the main difficulties in the beginning? Was there any support from family or from the church which the members go to? Lack of experience was a crucial one, we did not know how to converse with each other or express ideas, and everything used to be incompatible. In the beginning there was no family support, but the Sabaoth Missionary Base and God supported us, and that was enough for us. The Christian underground scene still suffers from discrimination from the secular scene and even From mainstream churches. Before you became Christians, did you also use to turn up your noses at the idea that many think is absurd, that is, that Christianity has no right to unite with the Heavy Metal and its variations? Actually we didn’t even know about Christian Metal and its variations. First we sought to serve God, and all other things were added to us. Christian metal came as a bonus in our lives. So we understood how wonderful it is to be of God. What are the band’s main musical influences? And what’s the main approach to songwriting? Which theme is most present in your lyrics? We listen to bands from all musical genres, the main ones are: As I Lay Dying, The Devil Wears Prada, August Burns Red, Impending Doom, Betraying the Martyrs and Third Day. Other than the personal experiences we have from living as Christians, our lyrics have been developed from praying, reading the Bible and singing whatever verses and passages that there are. Today we know that there isn’t much profit in the sale of products in the music industry as much as in the past due to Internet file sharing. How do you make the work of the band known and what’s your opinion on illegal downloading that is very criticized but defended by many? We use the simplest form possible. We’ve put the songs on our sites, and made them available as downloads. We can’t control anything that we haven’t created. Does the band have any promotional material? How was the recording experience? Was it as expected? Yes, in July 2011, we recorded a demo, entitled “Lembranças” (Memories) containing five tracks. The recording process was excellent, it served to unite us much more and we’ve learned a lot. It still isn’t what we want, but we know we can do better, so 2012’s promising much! Where have you performed outside the church or outside of Manaus? How was audience reception in general and was there any hostility from them for you being a Christian band? Our first show outside of Manaus was in October 2011 in Porto Velho, Rondônia at the first Sabaoth North Fest there in the town of Tres Marias. It was amazing, really sensational, a magnificent work of the Lord. We have also had the opportunity to play in secular locations such as the Vitrola Music bar and the Aomirante bar, and honestly there wasn’t anything we couldn’t have dealt with. Any hostility we had experienced was before we went onstage, the crowd responded well, and the result was great, because we know that the word of God never returns empty. That’s why we decided to have a Christian ministry, to speak of God’s love in places where nobody really goes. Having a Christian band to play only in church would not make sense to us. We play and will play wherever we’re called.
What are your plans and goals for 2012? We hope to make more music, record a video clip and a CD. For 2012, we don’t have a goal; we have a mission to play anywhere possible in order to rescue as many people for the kingdom of God. What were the main achievements made by the band in 2011? Looking back, how do you define the past year? The main achievement was having the band get up and record a demo after much confusion and frustration, and many detours. After all we were kids, the oldest was 17. We’ve overcome them all, and got some experience. We were sure that God would never have abandoned us, and we could not leave this ministry. This was a great achievement for all of us in 2011. It was a new beginning, a new covenant with God, and now... it is here to stay. Finally, is there a final word for the readers? How can the band be contacted online via myspace, Facebook, Youtube, Orkut, or otherwise? Wow, we would really like to thank the people on the social networks for all the affection they’ve shown, also we’d like to thank our friends, our families who have supported us, our partners onstage, and everyone, from the bottom of our hearts. Cheers! You can find us at the following: ■ Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/user/ImmortalFaith777 ■ Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Immortalfaith777 ■ myspace: http://www.myspace.com/immortalfaith777 ■ Email: email@example.com
8th SABAOTH NORTH FEST 16, 17 & 18 December 2011 in Manaus, Amazonas North Brazil’s Largest Christian Rock Festival (by Romeu Kleber) Those who think that North Brazil has nothing to offer but ‘jungle’ are very mistaken, for we were once again at the largest Christian rock festival in North Brazil, the SABAOTH NORTH FEST, which is now on its 8th edition. I’ve been part of this since the 6th edition when I heard about it from an online friend Pato Roco who is a member of the SABAOTH MISSIONARY BASE (BMS) and my band ZEBULOM was invited to play on that edition which we did. Since then I haven’t stopped going to Manaus to see the bands, to participate in the seminars that are carried out, to enjoy the fellowship, God’s presence and Mommy (Pastoress Marineide)’s very good cooking… lol. We must not forget that BMS has been at the helm of uniting the states in North Brazil, since we really didn’t know each other before much less know about each other’s culture. The states of Amapá, Roraima, Acre, Rondônia and Pará have all been represented, but we have not had the opportunity to have brothers from Tocantins play at the event.
First night The 16th of December started with our leaving Rio Branco (Acre) by bus for Porto Velho (Rondônia) where we stayed at a relative’s home for old time’s sake, and then we took a plane to Manaus. On arriving that afternoon, we went to a road intersection near the Base, where we gave out flyers and publicized the social aspect of the SABAOTH MISSION. That aspect is the fight against and the prevention of DRUGS, PEDOPHILIA and DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, which is very efficient and positive for the city and for God’s kingdom. That night, the festival got off to a good start at 7 o’ clock with the rock gospel band ATIVEL and I got impressed right away with BMS’s structure, as things have improved a lot since the last time we were there. ATIVEL reminded me of “Humanos” phase OFICINA G3 but they also had some aspects of the more recent “Depois da Guerra” phase. They clearly have shown that the quality of Christian bands in Manaus ranges from good to excellent. Next on was the Death Metal band NABHI now based in Porto Velho (Rondônia), though originally from Manaus. Raifran (guitar and vocals), his wife Dayandra (bass guitar) and their little son Zacai (drums) make up the band’s lineup. Zacai could barely be seen playing due to him being only seven years old. Between songs, his father had to play riffs from the next song because Zac can’t read set lists as yet (lol). They started off with a real wicked intro that sounded like machine guns rattling off bullets. The audience gave a standing ovation as it’s been a while since the band had played in Manaus and this was also Zacai’s first time playing there. His playing was fierce, and congratulations to him as he has a great future ahead. Following up was PROTESTANTES HC, a band that rocked from beginning to end and soon a lively round of Stage Diving, Mosh Pits and Circle Pits started up. No one in the place stood still, everyone sang the choruses to songs like Cabeça de Vento (Air head), Placa de Igreja (Church Name) and Raimundinho; it’s been a long time since I’ve enjoyed myself so much. The lighting and the sound were great, and the vibe was perfect. All of this reminded me of ZADOQUE when METAL MISSION magazine used to review all of the events that took place in São Paulo. Black metallers CEIFADORES closed off the night’s proceedings entering with a strong dominating visual image which included corpse paint (based on the four beasts of Revelation), chandeliers and T-shirts drenched in “blood”, making anti-Satanic remarks like John the Baptist’s “be converted, brood of vipers!”: raw and no frills. Their style includes screams and Grind/Doom influences; the crowd went wild and showed much respect to them. Second night NO FACE opened the second night of the festival. The band name refers to the “faceless worshipper”. They have a look similar to SLIPKNOT, which is very cool as I’ve never seen a band of this style doing this in Portuguese. They showed maturity when they spoke of the message of salvation. They had a lot of fervor onstage and played with a lot of attitude, and on every breakdown the DJ and keyboardist (who’s also a vocalist) got together with the vocalist to headbang. This band is very good. After NO FACE’s half hour repertoire, the only out of state band (unlike other years when there were more representatives from other states) GARDEN OF GOD (formerly known as ST. SEVEN) from Boa Vista (Roraima) got onstage. The vocalist is a BMS festival veteran. They started off with material from RODOX, and the crowd went wild right away, including me – a fan of this band, I even forgot to make notes and went Stage Diving the moment they started. After I thought they had finished with RODOX, they went through two more namely De Uma Só Vez (Only Once) and Incinerador (Incinerator), and after that P.O.D.’s Alive and DESERTOR’s Underground. For me this was the band’s best show as the first one here was weak. Maciel’s vocals have
improved a lot and now really fit in with Hardcore. There was then an intermission with a very good play staged by GRUPO DE TEATRO 1ª ESSÊNCIA (The FIRST ESSENCE THEATRE GROUP) from Boa Vista (Roraima). Their piece was about the wiles of the devil, as written in DJ ALPISTE’s song Inimigo (Enemy). This was followed by a really cool choreography piece from the SABAOTH THEATRE AND DANCE GROUP that used ROB ROCK’s Garden of Chaos. The third band of the night was the metalcore band IMMORTAL FAITH who put on a good show in the style of AS I LAY DYING. They also covered AILD’s Confined and that’s when I went moshing since I had rested and was just looking on. The audience was wild from start to finish and the band has a lot of stage presence and energy. The fourth band was VIOLENT INVASION - the best in all of Manaus (in my opinion) and also the best Christian band in Brazil today. No doubt they were the most awaited of the night. They started their repertoire shamelessly slaughtering the audience present which pogoed violently, especially on the last and most requested song: Kill the Devil. During this song, a group of people dressed in hoods staged a funeral carrying a coffin to the stage. The coffin represented man’s death without Jesus. For those unfamiliar with the band, it was formed by a former member of the internationally known band DIVINE SYMPHONY, these being the two best-known bands in Manaus. Too bad VIOLENT INVASION has not recorded yet, but it is a promise for Brazilian Metal. Third night (by Marcos Veríssimo) After two days of morning and evening programs at the Base, we were onto the last day of the festival. The morning service began with a moment of praise and worship then Pastoress Marineide Soares spoke on “The seller of dreams”, the last in a series of seminars which started on the 16th. After receiving food for the soul, we had a hearty lunch in the presence of our brothers in faith. The rest of the afternoon was left free for rehearsals and other activities. Night came and the public was present once again in good number just like on the first night. Away from events for the last few months in 2011 due to lineup problems, the band REFORMA PROTESTANTE made a comeback opening the night’s proceedings. With pastoress Darleide Tayane (vocals), Jenisson Miranda (guitar and backing vocals), Nick Nunes (bass guitar) and a special appearance by drummer Jonathas Carlos (from DIVINE SYMPHONY), the band played some exciting Punk Rock, always accompanied by messages of protest against the current situation of the world and even the church of Christ, without forgetting to mention the extreme act of love that He had done for each of us and reminding us to renounce ourselves in order to follow Him. Truly a highlight to which the audience freely pogoed, Darleide invited the women to participate as well, after all not only men have the right to enjoy themselves, do they? In this way the speed from the more fervent pogoers dropped, as is quoted from PROTESTANTES HC’s “Report it! Hitting women is a crime!”. The setlist included songs like Hipocrisia Não (No Hypocrisy), Sofisma (Sufism), Usurpadora (Usurper), Batalha Interior (Inner Battle), Ideias (Ideas), Homem Cão (Dog Man), Fariseu (Pharisee), Pego (Caught), Mente de Cristo (Mind of Christ) and a new song called Filho Pródigo (Prodigal Son). Without a shadow of a doubt, many who had missed this ministry were satisfied. After this the SABAOTH THEATRE AND DANCE GROUP presented a piece called “A morte da Carne” (Death of the Flesh) to SAVIOUR MACHINE’s Carnival of Souls. On stage, there was a human being dominated by the Works of the flesh and of sin, satisfying the devil greatly, until this ownership by the enemy
was broken by the Holy Spirit of God who washed our sins away with Christ’s blood. The words of the message behind the scene are quoted from the group as follows: “Even Christians in the church can indulge in sin. We are subject to error, so keep watch! By our own strength we have nothing! But God is ready to reach out to you; just cry out to Him and surrender His Spirit frees you from so much agony and pain, with God all things are possible! He washes you in the blood of the lamb, purifies you, gives you a new life and makes you whiter than snow Choose the blood shed for you; leave behind a life of shame and pain!” The second band onstage making their festival debut was TORMENT OF THE SEPSIA. Its current lineup includes Cocca (guitar and vocals), Wallyson Alves (bass guitar), Júlio César (guitar) and Gebson Rodrigues (drums). Pouring out Death Metal in its best style on songs like Deus de Guerra (God of War), Renascido do Inferno (Reborn from Hell) and Abstinência (Withdrawal), they are a sonic assault proclaiming blessings and the defeat of Satan that was accomplished by the death of Jesus on the cross at Calvary. There were some technical problems on the song Suas Mãos (Your Hands) so Cocca gave a message to the public until they could continue. Before their last song Uma Nação (One Nation) drummer Gebson gave a testimony about some deliverance he received from God the night before the event, thus showing that He cares for His children, and that you simply must put your life and your ways before Him. During the next intermission between bands, GRUPO DE TEATRO 1ª ESSÊNCIA (The FIRST ESSENCE THEATRE GROUP) from Boa Vista (Roraima) staged a piece that is well known and done in various churches to LIFEHOUSE’s Everything. In the scene, man is in fellowship with God in the Garden of Eden, only to have it broken with the advent of sin into the world, making mankind subject to diverse vices like drinking, drugs and prostitution, which often lead to death. However, man has a chance to recognize his mistakes and reconcile with the Father. This arouses the fury of the enemy that tries at all costs not to lose anyone from his grip. But God’s power and love are greater and in the end they free, restore and bring humans back to fellowship and a relationship with the Way, the Truth and the Life. And to end the evening and the festival, DIVINE SYMPHONY took the stage! After an introduction with scenes of the pain and sacrifice of love that Jesus went through on earth to free us from the devil’s domination, the band which returned this year with most of its original members, with exception of Daniel Nogueira (guitar) and Rodrigo Robson (keyboards), as always infected the audience with their Symphonic Metal. They performed songs from the band’s two studio albums released by EXTREME RECORDS, including Reject Darkness, God’s Wrath, Darkness, Reform, Humiliation and Fallen Face. So the 8th edition of SABAOTH NORTH FEST came to an end. It was three days of a lot of sound in various musical styles in order to present the Gospel of Christ to the extreme metal scene. Those who participated in the morning programs were doubly edified in the presence of God and the brethren. Now we can only remember the moments through photos and videos that have been posted on social networking sites and wait for the next festival, glory to God! * NOTE: In 2011 the SABAOTH NORTH FEST had a 1st edition in Boa Vista (Roraima) and also in Porto Velho (Roraima). In the next issue we will inform the festival dates to happen in 2012.
The Church has a history. Its history is marked by tribulation and missions, perseverance and missions, experiences and missions, hope and missions, passion and missions, blood and missions, persecution and many missions, movement and missions. The core mission of the Church is indestructible, because if we removed or inhibited or perverted the missionary nature of the Church, the Church would no longer exist, but would appear to. It would be like removing the reproductive genes of the vine and it would not be able to produce grapes. It would look like a vine, have the name, form, texture, noise, songs, CDs, sites, appeal, address and programs of a vine, but it would not be a vine.
The Moravians are a good example for us of the True Vine. THE MORAVIANS AND MISSIONS Author: Kenneth B. Mulholland
William Carey is regarded as the father of modern Protestant missions, primarily because he founded the Baptist Missionary Society. That society, begun in 1792 — 275 years after Martin Luther posted his Ninety-five theses on the Wittenberg church door in 1517 — at last gave protestants a vehicle for sending missionaries to the non-Christian world. Carey, however, did not invent the protestant missionary movement out of nothing. He constructed the platform from which the modern Protestant missionary movement was launched out of series of planks hewed during the centuries between Luther and himself. One such plank was Pietism, an interdenominational, international, evangelical movement that sought to revitalize the existing church through small groups devoted to Bible study, prayer, mutual accountability, and outreach. August Hermann Francke shaped the agenda for Pietism in just twelve words: “A life changed, a church revived, a nation reformed, a world evangelized”. Pietism first awakened a missionary vision among Protestants by sending missionaries to India and Greenland. Two other significant planks in Carey’s platform were the Moravian Church and the Puritans. The Moravians were the first Protestants to put into practice the idea that evangelizing the lost is the duty of the whole church, not just of a missionary society or a few individuals. Previously, responsibility for evangelization had been laid at the doorstep of governments through their colonial activities. But the Moravains believed missions is the responsibility for the whole congregation. Paul Pierson wrote, “the Moravians became committed to world missions as a church; that is, the whole church became a missionary society”. Because of their deep commitment, this small group furnished over half the Protestant missionaries who sailed from Europe during the entire eighteenth century. Actually Moravian history predates the Reformation. Originally known as the Unitas Fratrum, the Unity of the Brethren, these Czech Christians were the followers of the martyred John Hus, a Reformer before the Reformation. He was martyred on July 6, 1415, and Moravians honor his death in their church calendar even today.
After Hus’s death, his followers, who were sometimes called Hussites, and sometimes Bohemian Brethren, experienced a resurgence. They reorganized in the year 1457, and at the time of the Reformation there were between 150,000 and 200,000 members in four hundred congregations across central Europe. Then, in the wake of the religious wars of the 1600s, Bohemia came under a Roman Catholic king, who unleashed a fiery persecution against these Moravians. Fifteen of their leaders were beheaded. Church members were sent to dungeons and to mines. Their schools were closed. Their Bibles, hymnbooks, and catechisms, and historical writings were burned. The Moravians were scattered. In fact 16,000 families suddenly became refugees. For nearly one hundred years they were fleeing persecution. They formed underground networks of little hidden cells. Years later, in 1722, a small band of these refugees was searching for some place where they could be secure. When they crossed the border into Germany, they heard about a place called Herrnhut, which was a small parcel of land on the estate of Nicholas Ludwig von Zinzendorf. They asked if they could stay there. Zinzendorf was not there, but his administrator allowed them to form a settlement on the estate. Zinzendorf, an aristocrat, had early ties with the Pietist movement. His godfather was Philip Spener. At the age of ten he was sent to boarding school in the city of Halle, where his teacher was August Hermann Francke. While he was there his mentor was Bartholomew Ziegenbalg, the first Protestant missionary to Asia, who was on furlough. Zinzendorf described his life at Halle in this way: “Daily meetings in Professor Francke’s house; the edifying accounts concerning the Kingdom of Christ; the conversation with witnesses of the truth in distant regions; the acquaintance with several preachers; the plight of the first exiles and prisoners; the cheerfulness of that man of God and the work of the Lord together with various trials attending it, increased my zeal for the cause of the Lord in a powerful manner”. While Zinzendorf was at Halle, he was instrumental in forming the first Protestant student mission society called the Order of the Grain of Mustard Seed. He went on to study law at Wittenberg because his parents did not want him to be a preacher. When he finished his study of law, he made a grand tour of Europe, which was the custom of the aristocrats of that time. As part of his tour, he went to an art museum in Dusseldorf, Germany, and there he saw a portrait of the “thorn-crowned Christ”. He read the inscription below it: “I have done this for you; what have you done for Me?” This made such a profound impression on him that he wrote in his diary, “I have loved Him for a long time, but I have actually not done anything for Him. From now on I will do whatever He leads me to do”. He returned to Herrnhut where Moravian refugees had formed a community of about three hundred people. Zinzendorf took responsibility not only to oversee it as the owner of the land on which they lived, but also to serve as their pastor. In 1727 an outpouring of God’s Spirit united the community. Five years later, in 1732, Zinzendorf was invited to attend the coronation of the Danish king. (He was related to the royal family in Denmark). While there he discovered the product of the Danish-Halle missions - some converted Eskimos from Greenland and a converted person from the West Indies, a former slave whose name was Anthony. These people pleaded with Zinzendorf, “Can’t you do something to send us more missionaries?” His heart was broken. He went back to his community and laid before them the opportunity to send missionary reinforcements to Greenland, India, and other parts of the world where people did not know Christ. Twenty-six people immediately volunteered and the Moravian Missionary Movement was launched. In the next twenty-eight years more than two hundred Moravian missionaries entered more than two dozen countries to establish missionary work around the world.
Their work was guided by a number of characteristics that distinguished the Moravians.
First, they were deeply devoted to the Lord Jesus Christ. They were exceedingly Cristocentric. One time when I was ministering in Nicaragua, the Moravian Christians gave me a wooden plaque with the seal of their church. It depicts the triumphant Lamb in the Book of Revelation. It says, “Our Lamb has conquered; let us follow Him”. The Moravians preached Christ. Zinzendorf counseled outgoing missionaries, “You must go straight to the point and tell them about the life and death of Christ”. Earlier missionaries had often given elaborate proofs for the existence of God as though they were giving theology lectures. Zinzendorf urged the missionaries simply to tell the story of Jesus. There are numerous accounts of how that story awakened slumbering hearts and brought them to the Savior. Second, the Moravians, unlike the earlier Pietists, were not highly educated or theologically trained. They were tradespeople. In fact the first two missionaries they sent out were gravediggers by profession! The next two persons they sent were a carpenter and a potter. The Moravians opened the ministry to the laity and opened missionary service to women, preceding J. Hudson Taylor in this development by well over one hundred years. Third, they established tentmaking as a way of missionary strategy. Many people think tentmaking is recent. Yet the Moravian missionary movement was based on it. After all, how could a village of six hundred people support two hundred missionaries? Answer: They worked for a living. Zinzendorf said farming and factory work tie people down, but commerce and trade give them flexibility. He felt that not only would their practice and teaching of trades lift the economic level of the people to whom they were sent, but they would also provide a way of natural interaction with those same people. The book “Profit for the Lord” chronicles how the Moravians used tentmaking as a strategy for missionary work back in the middle of the 1700’s. Fourth, the Moravians went to people living on the periphery of society. Because the Moravians had been a suffering people they could identify with those who were suffering. They went to those whom others neglected. Hardly any missionaries were sent to the east coast of Honduras and Nicaragua. Those parts of Central America are inhospitable. But that is where the Moravians went. That was characteristic of their missionary vocation. Fifth, they went to receptive people. Because the Moravians believed the at the Holy Spirit is the primary “Missionary”, they counseled their missionaries, “Seek out the first fruit. Seek out those people whom the Holy Spirit has prepared and bring the good news to them”. Sixth, they put the increase of Christ’s kingdom ahead of the denominational divisions of Europe. Zinzendorf did not want to export the denominational divisions of Europe. He became an ecumenical pioneer, in the best sense of the term, 150 years before anyone ever thought of ecumenism. Seventh, Moravian missionary work was undergirded by prayer. When spiritual renewal occurred in 1727, they began a round-the-clock prayer watch, twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. The devotional “Daily Watchwords”, which is still produced by the Moravian church, is the most widely used devotional guide among European Christians. The Moravian ministry was strongly undergirded by prayer. The Moravians had missionary work in the state of Georgia because General Oglethorpe had been influenced by Zinzendorf and was part of the student missionary group they had started at Halle. When John Wesley sailed to the Unites States, his ship encountered a ferocious storm. Wesley was terrified. Only the Mora-
vians, who had a sense of peace with God, kept him from panic. It was they who presented to him his need for a personal relationship with Christ. Returning to England, after a failed ministry in Georgia, he said, “I went to convert the Indians, but, who, oh who, will convert me?” He went to a meeting at Aldersgate — a meeting of Moravians — during which his heart, he said, was “strangely warmed” and he found assurance of salvation. He went to Herrnhut to examine the Moravian work and as a result, he patterned the work of Methodism on the Moravian model. He took for motto the words of Zinzendorf: “The world is my parish”. The Moravians also had a strong influence on William Carey, who had difficulty generating support for the idea of a missions society. Here is an account of how the founding of that missionary society finally came about. In the evening a small group of 12 ministers and one layman gathered with William Carey in the spacious home of widow Wallace, known for its hospitality as the Gospel Inn. Again, Carey pressed for action; again the brethren wavered. After all, who were these men? Ministers of poverty-stricken churches to undertake a mission so beset with difficulty, so fraught with uncertainty. At the crucial moment, when all hope seemed gone, Carey took from his pocket a booklet entitled, Periodical Account of Moravian Missions. With tears in his eyes and a tremor in his voice, he said, “If only you had read this and knew how these men overcame all obstacles for Christ’s sake, you would go forward in faith”. That was it! The men agreed to act. The minutes of the meeting record their decision to form “The Particular Baptist Society for Propagating the Gospel among the Heathen”, also known as the Baptist Missionary Society. Its strength lay in the motivation provided by the account of Moravian missionaries. Someone once asked a Moravian what it is like to be Moravian. He responded, “To be a Moravian and to further Christ’s global cause are identical”. Article: MORAVIANS, PURITANS, AND THE MODERN MISSIONARY MOVEMENT. Kenneth B. Mulholland - Professor of Missions and Ministerial Studies, Department of Missions Seminary in Columbia, South Carolina. Source 1: http://www.ciu.edu/faculty-publications/article/moravians-puritans-and-modern-missionary-movement Source 2: Bibliotheca Sacra 156 (April-June 1999): 221-32 Source 3: Rev. José João de Paula – APMT secretary. Alcance magazine – Third trimester 2003 Portuguese version: http://montedeadoracao.com.br/2010/10/21/moravianos-quem-sao/
Published on Jan 31, 2012
Published on Jan 31, 2012
First edition! Contains articles about SABAOTH NORTH FEST 2011, Music or Ministry?, interview with the band IMMORTAL FAITH and more!