About Hardin Brazil & the RBBI Ministry.
For more information, contact Pastor Pedro, the RBBI Coordinator, at email@example.com.
Hardin’s love for the people of the Amazon River and the IBBR started when our church had to withdraw from the Blood River Baptist Association because of our belief about biblical baptism. During this time, I met Bro Richard Walker, retired Southern Baptist Missionary to the Amazon. When I met him, he was leading churches on mission trips to the Amazon.
He asked me to pray about going to a little village of 500 people that he had been to 20 years earlier. He said people were praying for someone to bring the gospel to them. He showed me Barreinhra on a map of Brazil. And when our boat finally landed on the bank of that city, it was not sand but concrete and the city of 500 had grown to over 5000! During that first mission trip, God gave us the privilege of starting a Baptist Church!
What a privilege and honor I have had to follow in the steps of Bro Richard Walker as the Professor of the IBBR. And what a privilege Hardin Baptist has had to provide the resources for this impactful ministry to so many along the banks of the Amazon River. The seed for this ministry was sown when Hardin Baptist accepted the invitation of Bro Richard Walker to go with him on this mission trip to the Amazon River.
I will never forget standing on the concrete bank of the Amazon River with the bow of the AMOR BEATRIZ behind me and a audience of maybe 70-80 people in front of me and Bro Walker asking me if I was nervous. I said, “Yes.” To which he replied, “Don’t be, you preach what you want to in English, and I will preach what I want to in Portuguese.” From that moment on, I always checked with the translators on the trip to see if he translated my English sermons into Portuguese or if he preached his own.
I knew he trusted my biblical teaching ability when he asked me if I would consider going with him and teaching the IBBR. He loved teaching and training the pastors of the IBBR. I always made the same excuse; “Bro Walker if I go and teach the IBBR, you will have to translate what I say and the pastors will only get half the amount of biblical teaching if you just teach them in Portuguese.” So I never went with him to the IBBR.
But looking back, I think Bro Walker sensed early from our mission trips together that God would one day lead me to follow in his steps and become the Professor of the IBBR. The pastors who knew Bro Walker still talk highly and lovingly of him.
In 2010, with Bro Walker’s son Boyd translating for me, I taught First Peter to the pastors under a tree beside Mount Calvary Baptist Church in Parintins! And then the mantle of translating for me was passed from Boyd to his son William. I have had the privilege of Bro Walker, Boyd and William being my voice to people of the Amazon River. I also had the privilege of leading William to Christ and baptizing him in the Amazon on one of our mission trips.
Today, I believe the seed that was sown in my heart to teach the Word of God on the bank of the Amazon River is bearing fruit in the lives of many many pastors and church leaders who faithfully leave their families and churches to travel to the IBBR to listen to me, take notes, sift through what I have taught them and then with the anointing of the Holy Spirit go back to their churches and teach God’s Word!
There are no words to describe the eternal impact of the IBBR! Many of the pastors and church leaders are isolated from others because of the vastness of the Amazon. The IBBR allows the pastors of the Amazon to come together for fellowship, encouragement, accountability and teaching resources.
When the AMOR Beatriz untied its ropes many many years ago and motored away from the the concrete bank of that town, my heart and the heart of Hardin Baptist stayed tied to the River Bank. We are so honored to be the custodians of this amazing ministry.
Only By His Grace,
Bro Ricky and Hardin Baptist Church