Tuesday, January 7, 2014

A New-Year's Love Letter to my Fellow Gospel Musicians | Nathaniel Bassey


Shalom Saints,

A very happy New Year of peace and joy to you. I write to share a thought we you as we begin this great year. Be blessed as you read through.

Some weeks back, I was asked to give my opinion on the subject of collaborating with secular Musicians and Artistes. While I didn't respond, my friends and close associates know my unambiguous stand on this matter. It may seem an old school, out of fashion and holier-than-thou point of view, but I still stand by it.

Most people and indeed many gospel musicians would agree that Christian musicians are also ministers of the Gospel, albeit in songs and art, just as preachers and teachers are ministers in Word. And a clear understanding of this puts to rest arguments and biases regarding alliances and collaborations with secular Artistes whose songs and lifestyles have done more harm than good.

To drive home a point, I would like to paint a simple picture. If gospel musicians are first, ministers of the Gospel, and as some argue, that collaborations with secular Artistes is okay, then having a church convention with a native doctor on the line up with other preachers is fine. After all, the native doctor would draw some of his crowd and perhaps they could be saved in the process, at least that's the kind of reasoning behind gospel Artistes' collaboration with secular musicians. According to them, the scope of evangelism is broadened featuring with unbelieving Artistes, as well as the attempt to reach out to these Artistes.

Now if this illustration appears bizarre, why is collaborating with unbelieving Artistes okay?

My answer is simple - "LONG-THROAT", and something the Yorubas call, EJUKOKORO. Truth is sometimes we just desire the things the secular Artists have -the money, fame, fans, cars etc. And would stop at nothing to taste some of these goodies while hiding under the guise of evangelism and some new revelation and idea of how to win the world over for the Lord, as if the Holy Spirit is out of ideas.

Inferiority complex could be another reason, thinking that we need some kind of boost by virtue of affiliation to be accepted by the world and to show that we have arrived.

Christian musician? You're worth more than this. May we all come to a higher understanding of who we are in Christ. Who said you need to liaise with the secular Artiste to make an impact for God? LIE ! LIE ! LIE ! The kingdom is blessed with a wide array of talents and gifts for collaborations and partnerships. We don't save the world by being like them, and doing what they do. We do by the preaching of the word, prayers and by living out the Gospel and sharing God's love. I have seen, and continue to see a lot of gospel musicians whose lives have been destroyed just because they walked this path.

Saints, I know I may have punched some folks below the belt, and could get some stones in return, but whatever you do, give this a serious thought, and allow the truth prevail over Satan's lies.

Deep down, these secular Artistes, some of who were once Christians and who gradually crossed over for reasons such as these, admire us. They wish they could have stayed back, believed God and trusted him. Because out there, it's emptiness and vanity. If you ever heard Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson and a host of others speak at the twilight of their lives, you would agree. I even know and still meet some Naija Artistes who have opened up to me, and sometimes wish they could trade places.

I don't say this as a one who knows and has got it all, but do it to remind us all of who we truly are - LIGHTS that lead the way in a grossly dark world. This year, let's go out and stand for Jesus!

Happy New Year

Nathaniel Bassey

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