ChristianMusicReview.org's "Kingdom Builder" podcast recently conducted an interview with MEGADETH bassist David Ellefson. You can now listen to the chat using the audio player below.
In addition to studying to become a Lutheran pastor, Ellefson presides over MEGA Life! Ministries, a foundation that reaches hundreds of churchgoers every week.
Ellefson in 2011 became one of 100 students in the distance education program at the Concordia Seminary in Clayton, Missouri. Classes include "Lutheran Distinctions," "Preaching I & II," "Introduction to Worship" and "Scripture and Faith."
Speaking to Christian Post, Ellefson stated about his decision to try to become an ordained Lutheran pastor, "I've done higher education in recent years and I do a lot of work inside the church when I'm off the road, too. I do it merely out of my passion for it. So when the SMP program was offered to me from my pastor I thought it would be a great opportunity to play music and still grow in my faith and future opportunities for service to God."
He added, "The LCMS offering the SMP education for adults to be raised up in training from within the congregation is really a cool way to do this education and help the church develop pastors and leaders from within their own congregations. It's the only way for someone like me who travels for a living to get any type of higher learning education and this is a matter that is close to my heart and passions anyway."
When asked if he saw any conflict between being the bassist for a secular metal band and a Christian, Ellefson told Christian Post, "Some people in the church may see an issue with me playing mainstream music but this is the life I was given and my musical talents are also a gift from God. In hindsight, the formation and success of MEGADETH is blessed by God.
"For me to have a hunch at 16 to drive to California after my high school graduation, meet Dave Mustaine there at age 18, and then form this group was no random accident. To me, the whole thing has had the Lord's Hands on it from day one. After all, Christian plumbers, mechanics, lawyers, and doctors don't only work in the church, so why should a professional musician?"