“The one who hears you hears Me, and the one who rejects you rejects Me, and the one who rejects Me rejects Him who sent me.” Luke 10:16.
“Standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, and not frightened in anything by your opponents. This is a clear sign to them of their destruction, but of your salvation, and that from God. For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in Him but also suffer for His sake” Philippians 1:27-30
The scriptures above give clear indication that Christ fully expects us to be rejected, hated, and even harmed or killed for professing faith in Him. In the first scripture found in Luke, Jesus explains that when the world rejects us for His namesake, it is not without consequence. It is also written in James 1:2-3, “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.” All of this together point to what our attitude should be towards suffering. We should count it as joy to suffer for Christ, because it bot marks us as His, and is used by Him to do a work in us. So then, the worlds rejection of us should be viewed as an honor, because when they label us outcasts they are effectively marking us as set apart for Christ.
As a symbol for REJX, we have chosen the letter X for various reasons. In ancient Greek, the word for Christ (another word for anointed one or messiah) is christos. The Greek letter chi is the foundation for the word and appears as the modern letter X. So then, for all intensive purposes, X can be used as an equivalent for Christ. In fact, early Christian writings by monks and church members often abbreviated the word Christians as Xians. This can be observed in todays culture during Christmas when many exchange the word Christ in Christmas for the letter X to make the shortened version Xmas…So removing Christ from Christmas and replacing it with the letter X was either a stroke of genius or a failed attempt at discounting the reason for the season. That being said, we found that there was a unique opportunity for us here. The X is also commonly used as a symbol for rejection, as one might draw a big fat X over the picture of a person not selected to be a part of an established group such as a sports team during tryouts or actors going out for a role in a play or film. We found it to be perfect that the X can be used as both a symbol of rejection from the world but may also act as the mark of Christ (X) to brand those who belong to Him.
In the year 2014, Christian Hip-Hop and R&B have become more prevalent then ever and continues to grow in popularity worldwide. As with all things, growing popularity means growing opportunity, and thousands upon thousands now flock to a once obscure genre in an attempt to leave their mark on the world. Though this reality is a sure fire recipe for leaps and bounds to be made in the area of quality as well as the broadening of boundaries in the genre to create a more diverse selection of music, it can also spell disaster in the form of negligence in the area of attention paid to detail. Because of this, some amazing and unique music is sure to slip through the cracks amidst the sea of faces clamoring for their time at center stage.
The reality of it is not everyone will find a successful career in music, and though many are pure in their intention to spread the message of Christ in the form of song, there are bound to be many who are rejected. Some may simply not be of a very high caliber in regards to their art form, while others simply lack the finances and exposure to receive proper accolades for their efforts. In any case, as Christians, we must learn to submit to the authority of God and find peace and fulfillment in life no matter where He has placed us to serve. Three musicians have come to recognize this struggle in their own lives as well as given witness to similar struggles in the lives of their musical peers. These artists decided to combine their efforts in the creation of the collaboration album REJX.
REJX features three artists who have yet to establish national recognition, but have been around for years, and have maintained a steady presence in the industry. These artists are Anthony Valor (formerly known as A.M.), Judah Léon, and goldinchild. Now label mates of “Fyerbrand” (Valor’s ministry and multi-media production company), the trio has quite the colorful past. Valor was called into ministry in 2007 and worked on two solo projects before he founded Fyerbrand (then known as Twelve-Two Productions) in early 2009 and put together a compilation album titled Ambassadors of the Future featuring his longtime friend and current label mate Judah, as well as two others (Mr. Bridge and G-Reign) under the group name “Lion Squad.” Though this group no longer works together, Valor and Léon have continued forward with the label, both releasing solo projects in 2010-2012. The pair, soon after, met Jack “goldinchild” Marlowe, who is most known for his role in the Christian Hip-Hop duo “Sons of Intellect” alongside National recording artist KJ-52. The three quickly realized an immediate camaraderie as well as ministerial compatibility.
One topic often became the center of conversation for the three and that was a shared disappointment in their lack of general success in the industry. The three have each learned to accept that what they imagined for their lives may not have been God’s plan exactly but still feel far from finished using their gifts to serve the Lord. They decided to work on a project together choosing this very topic as the focus. Over the years, they have seen many struggle with this topic, as well as personally suffered from its effects and felt it was “a project that needed to be done.” The album is intended to relate to those in a similar place, encourage them, and help them find peace in whatever season in life they find themselves. The album is available FREE at www.Fyerbrand.com. You can also download Anthony Valor and Judah Léon’s solo projects for free at the same web address under the “Artists” tab if you are unfamiliar with their past work.