J.S. Bach the Evangelist

Dr. Uwe Siemon-Netto gave an excellent lecture about the role of Johann Sebastian Bach in helping to spread the good news of Jesus of Nazareth in Japan.  The entire lecture can be found at this link, and is entitled: “Bach, the Divine Spook.”  Here is an excerpt from that lecture:

“Bach’s music provides Christianity with a curious inroad to a group of people who in the past had resisted evangelization more effectively than any other: Japan’s elite.  Masashi Masuda, from Hokkaido, Japan’s northernmost island, told me how Glenn Gould’s interpretation of Bach’s Goldberg Variations had first aroused his interest in Christianity.  ‘There was something about that music that prompted me to probe deeper and deeper into its spiritual origins,’ he said.”

Here is a recording of Cantata 51: Jauchzet Gott in allen Landen! “Praise God in every nation!” composed by J.S. Bach & performed by Elizabeth Parcells: