By Editorial Staff
Published October 1, 1988
HAVANA, Cuba (EP) – The evangelical church in Cuba is alive but is “waiting for a revival,” according to Rodrigo Zapata, an expert on the Latin American church and a missionary with Heralding Christ Jesus’ Blessings (HCJB) World Radio. Zapata visited the communist-controlled country June 24-July 4.
“The Cuban church is in a period of transition,” he said. “It’s not dead; it’s alive. But it’s waiting for a revival. Some believers are fearful of the future.” Zapata preached in churches and led Bible studies for more than 60 Cuban pastors representing about 30,000 believers in the country, about 0.3 percent of the population.
There is no organized persecution of the evangelical church by the Cuban government, but resistance can come in more subtle forms, especially for those outspoken about their faith. For example, it is difficult for an active Christian to secure and to hold a job, according to Zapata, who said it is “not impossible, but difficult. The Christian has to be quiet so he won’t be betrayed by someone else who wants to obtain his job.”
In spite of the pressure, there are young, Christian professionals who are spearheading future growth of the evangelical church in Cuba, according to Zapata. “The new generation of Christians is a generation of university students and professionals, doctors and scientists, cultured people who are very well prepared and who have a greater impact on society.”
A number of Christian radio stations broadcast into Cuba: Family Radio from Florida, Trans World Radio from Bonaire, and HCJB can be heard clearly throughout the island nation. When he asked the 500-member congregation of First Baptist Church in Santiago which of them listened to HCJB, said Zapata, nearly everyone raised their hands. He also reported hearing of a church in the mountains founded by people when they came to faith through the radio programs of HCJB ten years ago. “Today it’s a strong church and has a pastor,” said Zapata.
Even though religious freedoms in Cuba are restricted, Zapata claims that the evangelical church has a favored position because of the country’s leader, Fidel Castro. Christians who fought with Castro during the 1953 revolution left an impression of the communist leader who “respects their prayers, their reading of the Word and their Christian virtues,” said Zapata, who added, “They are national heroes.”
But most of the atheist officials in the communist regime don’t hold this view. “In my opinion, if Castro were to be replaced, the evangelical church would suffer more persecution,” Zapata claimed.
Forerunner - Home » The Forerunner Newspaper » Latin America
Your comments are welcome!
That Swiss Hermit Strikes Again!
Dr. Schaeffer, who was one of the most influential Christian thinkers in the twentieth century, shows that secular humanism has displaced the Judeo-Christian consensus that once defined our nation’s moral boundaries. Law, education, and medicine have all been reshaped for the worse as a consequence. America’s dominant worldview changed, Schaeffer charges, when Christians weren’t looking.
Schaeffer lists two reasons for evangelical indifference: a false concept of spirituality and fear. He calls on believers to stand against the tyranny and moral chaos that come when humanism reigns-and warns that believers may, at some point, be forced to make the hard choice between obeying God or Caesar. A Christian Manifesto is a thought-provoking and bracing Christian analysis of American culture and the obligation Christians have to engage the culture with the claims of Christ.
$19.95 — ORDER NOW!(We accept all major credit cards and PayPal.)
“Here I stand … I can do no other!”
With these immortal words, an unknown German monk sparked a spiritual revolution that changed the world.
The dramatic classic film of Martin Luther’s life was released in theaters worldwide in the 1950s and was nominated for two Oscars. A magnificent depiction of Luther and the forces at work in the surrounding society that resulted in his historic reform efforts, this film traces Luther’s life from a guilt-burdened monk to his eventual break with the Roman Catholic Church.
Running time: 105 minutes
Special offer: Order 5 or more for $5 each.
Watch a clip from Martin Luther.
$9.95 — ORDER NOW!(We accept all major credit cards and PayPal.)
High Quality Paperback — 40 pages of dynamite!
Revival, Resistance, Reformation, Revolution
An Introduction to the Doctrines of Interposition and Nullification
In 1776, a short time after the Declaration of Independence was adopted, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and Benjamin Franklin were assigned to design an official seal for the United States of America. Their proposed motto was Rebellion to Tyrants is Obedience to God. America owes its existence to centuries of Christian political philosophy. Our nation provided a model for liberty copied by nations the world over.
By the 21st century, we need a “Puritan Storm” to sweep away the Hegelian notion that the state is “God walking on earth.” We need revival and reformation in full force to vanquish the problems that plague us as a nation — from government controlled healthcare — to abortion on demand — to same sex “marriage.” This booklet gives a primer on our founders’ Christian idea of government and examines how the doctrine of nullification was woven into the Constitution as a safeguard against federal tyranny. It concludes with the history and theology of civil resistance. A Second American Revolution is coming with the Word of God growing mightily and prevailing! (Acts 19:20).
$7.95 — ORDER NOW!(We accept all major credit cards and PayPal.)
High Quality Paperback — 219 pages
Foundations in Biblical Orthodoxy
Driving down a country road sometime, you might see a church with a sign proudly proclaiming: “No book but the Bible — No creed but Christ.” The problem with this statement is that the word creed (from the Latin: credo) simply means “belief.” All Christians have beliefs, regardless of whether they are written.
Yet a single book containing the actual texts of the most important creeds of the early Church will not often be found. Out of the multitude of works on the evangelical Christian book market today, those dealing with the creeds of the Church are scarce.
Why Creeds and Confessions? provides a foundation of biblical orthodoxy as a defense against the false and truly heretical doctrines advanced by the spirit of this age.
$14.95 — ORDER NOW!(We accept all major credit cards and PayPal.)
Foundations in Biblical Eschatology
By Jay Rogers, Larry Waugh, Rodney Stortz, Joseph Meiring. High quality paperback, 167 pages.
All Christians believe that their great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, will one day return. Although we cannot know the exact time of His return, what exactly did Jesus mean when he spoke of the signs of His coming (Mat. 24)? How are we to interpret the prophecies in Isaiah regarding the time when “the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea” (Isa. 11:19)? Should we expect a time of great tribulation and apostasy or revival and reformation before the Lord returns? Is the devil bound now, and are the saints reigning with Christ? Did you know that there are four hermeneutical approaches to the book of Daniel and Revelation?
These and many more questions are dealt with by four authors as they present the four views on the millennium. Each view is then critiqued by the other three authors.
$12.95 — ORDER NOW!(We accept all major credit cards and PayPal.)