Tuesday, February 11, 2014


Par : Valdemir Mota de Menezes

Nous lisons la lettre de l'apôtre Paul à Philémon que le christianisme n'est pas venu modifier la structure de la société , mais l'essence de personnes qui acceptent Jésus comme leur guide et enseignant . Par conséquent , Paul ne nécessite pas ou demander à Philémon de libérer son esclave Onésime même . Paul appelle l'amour chrétien , à Philémon accepte l'esclave fugitif et de pardonner et reçoit désormais non seulement comme un esclave, mais comme un frère .
L'influence de cette lettre a été l'un des fondements de la chrétienté au cours des siècles ainsi que le christianisme est devenu la religion officielle de l'Empire romain , l'église forcé à changer la structure sociale , et progressivement dans le Moyen Age , l'esclavage a été cédant la place à la nouvelle système social fondé sur le servage . Dans les livres d'histoire que nous apprenons sur la féodalité , une relation de seigneurs et de vassaux qui devint travail , des relations plus équilibrées . Les dirigeants de l'Église catholique dit qu'il n'était pas approprié de traiter un frère en Christ comme un esclave .


Por: Valdemir Mota de Menezes

Lemos na carta do apóstolo Paulo a Filemon que o cristianismo não veio mudar a estrutura da sociedade, mas a essencia dos individuos que aceitam Jesus como seu guia e mestre. Nestes termos, Paulo não exige, nem mesmo pede que Filemon liberte o seu escravo Onésimo. Paulo invoca o amor cristão, para que Filemon aceita o escravo fujão e que o perdoe e que agora o recebe não somente como um escravo, mas como um irmão.
A influência desta carta foi um dos alicerces para que, o cristianismo nos séculos seguintes assim que o cristianismo se tornou religião oficial do imperio romano, a igreja forçasse a estrutura social a mudar, e gradativamente na Idade Media, a escravidão foi dando lugar ao novo sistema social, baseado na servidão. Nos livros de história aprendemos sobre o feudalismo, uma relação de senhores e vassalos que tornava a relação trabalhista, mais equilibrada. Os líderes da igreja católica diziam que não era conveniente tratar um irmão em Cristo como escravo.


By: Valdemir Mota de Menezes

We read the letter from the Apostle Paul to Philemon that Christianity came not change the structure of society , but the essence of individuals who accept Jesus as their guide and teacher . Accordingly , Paul does not require or even ask Philemon to release his slave Onesimus . Paul invokes Christian love , to Philemon accepts the runaway slave and to forgive and now receives not only as a slave but as a brother .
The influence of this letter was one of the foundations for Christianity in the centuries so that Christianity became the official religion of the Roman Empire, the church forced to change the social structure , and gradually in the Middle Ages , slavery was yielding place to new social system based on serfdom. In the history books we learn about feudalism , a relationship of lords and vassals who became labor , more balanced relationship . The leaders of the Catholic Church said it was not appropriate to treat a brother in Christ as a slave

Sunday, February 2, 2014



The first theme we're going to be thinking about is slavery and freedom. And to start that theme I want to read you several passages from 1 Corinthians. The first is 1 Corinthians 6:20-- "You were bought with a price." The second, "Only let everyone lead the life which the Lord has assigned to him or her, and in which God called him or her... Were you a slave when called? Don't let it concern you. But even if you can gain your freedom, rather use it. For s/he who was called in the Lord as a slave is a freed person of the Lord. Likewise s/he who was free when called is a slave of Christ. You were bought with a price; don't become slaves of humans. So, brothers and sisters, in whatever state each was called, remain with God." For the one who was called in the Lord as a slave is a freed person of the Lord. Likewise the one who was free when called is Christ's slave. You were bought with a price. Do not become slaves of humans. So, brothers and sisters in whatever state each was called, there let him or her remain with God. A third passage: "For though I am free from all, I have made myself slave to all, in order that I might win the more." And a fourth passage: "...it's been reported to me by Chloe's people..." I want you to keep those in mind as we talk about Rome and Corinth. In 168 BCE, Corinth was destroyed by the Roman general Mummius. It had been a longstanding Greek city. The city was still populated in its interim, but it really grew when it was re-founded as a Roman colony in 44 BCE by Julius Caesar. It then again emerged as a leader on the Peloponnesos, even after its destruction. Here's a coin that was minted in Corinth. It has the head of Caesar with a Latin inscription on one side. The inscription refers to the full name of Rome and Corinth-- Colonia Laus Iulia Corinthiensis. It was under Augustus however, not Julius Caesar, that the city really reestablished itself after that period of desolation and became the capital of the senatorial Roman province of Achaia. Corinth lay on a significant trade route in antiquity on the isthmus connecting ancient Attica to the Peloponnesos. It nestled inland between its ports of Lechaion to the north and Kenchreai to the south. It was also located near Isthmia, a town renowned for its quadrennial games. Isthmia, like Olympia in the ancient world, had games every four years, from which we derive our modern Olympics tradition. To transfer cargo from the Saronic Gulf-- to the southeast-- to the Gulf of Corinth-- to the northwest-- ships probably had to negotiate with the city of Corinth, unless they wanted to circumnavigate the Peloponnesos. Corinth controlled a seven meter paved roadway called the diolkos, that allowed oxen to drag ships or cargo across the narrow spit of land. Because it lay between two ports and because 1 Corinthians mentions prostitution and women who were prophets, some have argued that the city was a metropolitan hotbed of urban sins-- prostitution, Dionysiac female ecstasies, law courts that were doing horrible things, sacrificial meats, a temple of Aphrodite that may have engaged in ritual prostitution. All these rumors have swirled around ancient Corinth. But archaeological evidence doesn't indicate that Corinth was anything unusual, that there was any greater freedom for women or any greater cultural context of prostitution there. Often scholars tend to misuse archaeology. They try to find out what is morally wrong or questionable about the local context. They assume that the apostles came to correct or to bleach out this cultural context, rather than to work within it. Corinth, as a city, was important to Rome. Its form reflected its connections to the Roman imperial family. The official inscriptions in Corinth were mainly in Latin, whereas unofficial ones were in Greek, the broader language of the city and the region. Here's one example of that Roman imperial presence in the city. This statue is an image of Augustus sacrificing-- Octavian or Augustus, do you remember, reined from 29 BCE to 14 CE. It was found in the southern part of the west aisle of a cryptoporticus, an underground hallway, in a basilica on the east end of the forum. It's marble, about one half larger than life. And it may have been a centerpiece of a series of imperial statues located in the main hall of this Julian basilica. The toga, you see, is pulled over Augustus's head like a veil. This indicates that the emperor is offering a sacrifice. His right hand probably held a patera, or shallow dish, too , for this purpose. This motif of veiling is often associated with Augustus's role as pontifex maximus, a function he assumed in 12 BCE. The statue may date from that year to the year 14 CE, when he died. It's interesting to look at the statute because it reminds us of two things. First of all that there was Roman power manifest in the Corinthian forum. But second, you might think about a passage in 1 Corinthians 11, in which Paul writes that women should be veiled when they pray or prophesy, while men should not be. Why is that the case? No one really knows for sure. But it's interesting in the context of Roman Corinth to remember that the veiling of a man's head indicated his piety before the gods, his correct ritual practice. Roman Corinth was repopulated not by military veterans but by ex-slaves. Coins from the first century CE indicate that a mix of freedman and traders became leaders in the city. Freedman or freedpersons are former slaves, and they usually weren't eligible to hold civic office. But Caesar made exceptions for colonies that he founded. These ex-slaves might have been very rich, and some of them were, but they were still tied by a patronage system to their former masters in Rome. And they could conduct business on their master's behalf-- business from which elites were legally barred-- in Corinth, at this important port between West and East. Corinth was thus a place of potential social mobility or upward mobility and those of low status could attain wealth and position in colonial Corinth. We find wealthy freedmen in the city. In the center of the city, in the forum, we find benefactions or gifts from freedpersons. One of these is someone named Gnaius Babbius Philinus, pontifex-- that is, a priest. And he held important governmental offices in Corinth in the first half of the first century, precisely at the time of the coalescing of the Corinthian Ekklesia. He was a benefactor of the fountain of Poseidon in the forum. We also find freedmen at a Tiberian-period monument of the Augustales. If you look at the inscription, you see that at least two freedmen participated in this group that honored the emperors. Their inscriptions after the names includes "L," an abbreviation for libertus, or "freedman." In addition, some of the other names suggest that more of the people might also have been freedmen. By participating in the Augustales, freedpersons and their children could advance socially and display their wealth in the community. From this evidence we learn that during the century when Paul was visiting the city, Roman Corinth was run in part by freedpersons, and that prominent freedpersons continued to be visible in the public square through their benefactions and through monuments that honored them. Freedom and a history of slavery are on the Corinthians' minds. Romanos 1:24-27

Tuesday, January 7, 2014



By Valdemir Mota de Menezes

This letter of Paul can also be seen through the prism of the ethical issue of slavery . No time the apostle Paul questioned the legitimacy of a man owning another man . The working relationship where one person provides service to another is not the theme that Christianity is presented as a solution . The Christian doctrine goes far beyond what commercial , civil, criminal and labor relations . If we truly love our neighbor as ourselves , the force of law is not necessary anymore . Christianity has not failed in his theology , but we Christians , we have a story of personal failures , where ambition often speaks louder than the idealism of the Sermon on the Mount . Our capitalist system can be as cruel as slavery . Unemployment , low wages and exploitation are perversities that survive the end of slavery , why Christianity was not interested in ending slavery , but if we live in Christ's love , even with the slave system and the master slave relationship can be happy and respectful .



By: Valdemir Mota de Menezes, the Scribe

Regrets that the worst of Brazil, our garbage is so successful outside of Brazil ... This "thing" called Paulo Freire, this alienated communist, is destroying education in Brazil. His ideas are absurd, impractical. Revolutionary ideas of the people in power that is leading to the degradation of our schools in Brazil. This Manual destroy education called "pedagogy of the oppressed" will make Brazil chaos, these egalitarian ideas are good for creating communist nations such as Cuba glorious .... I am a public school teacher in Brazil and I know the evil that Paulo Freire doing this with the support of the Left parties in Brazil.