CHURCH AS THE MAJOR PROBLEM OF CHRISTIAN MUSCICIANS IN NIGERIA
By Faith Ote Uchara
The Christian music industry is bedeviled with a lot of problems, and it is pathetic to categorically state here that the church is the major problem facing it, today. It may sound vague to a lot of people, but this article will clarify any form of ambiguity posed by the title of the article. It is also fundamental to state here that, readers of this article should read and digest it with an open mind, so that they will not be tempted to say that the article is heretical in nature.
The foregone been said, it is now pivotal to state why the church is the major problem facing Christian Music in Nigeria.
Foremost is the issue of doctrine. In recent times, the church has tried so much to limit Christian Music to the enclave of church doctrines. Christian Musicians are not allowed to explore other genre of music that is not related to their doctrines. And any Christian musician that try to contradict the church is seen as a reprobate or rebel, or to put it in a language that sound more like them is “ stirring up strange fire”
According, they limit Christian Musicians from flowing with the trend. It is so alarming to note that the church seems resistant to change. They are churches that will never allow their Musicians to move with the new trend of Christian Music. They will rather encourage the Musicians to continue in the archaic traditions of music handed over to them, centuries ago. And any Musician that go contrary to them are trying to remove the “ancient landmark”
Subsequently, the church pays little or less attention to sponsorship of her members that are into music. In Nigeria especially, there are just two Pastors who place high value on Christian Musicians in Nigeria, namely, Pastor Chris Oyaklome of Believers Love World, and Pastor Biodun Fatoyimbo of Common Wealth Of Zion Assembly. This is not to say that there are no other Pastors that sponsor Christian Musicians, but the value these other Pastors place on Indigenous Christian Musicians can never be compared to that of Pastors Chris and Pastor Fatoyimbo.
In addition to the above is discrimination. It may amaze you to know that being born again does not take away biases. Whether you agree with me or not, I make bold to say that bias is innate in man, and preference is given to what we call ours. What do I mean by that? If a Christian musician that is not from the same tribe as the stakeholders, is doing well, and by virtue of being good deserves support, especially financially, they will be reluctant in rendering that support. You may want to wonder why it is so. But the truth of it all is that our society has made us internalize the socialization on tribalism in so much that it has crept into the church, and what is so sad, about is the fact that it has informed the church in her decisions making.
Closely related to the foregone is the love for what is foreign and hatred for what is aboriginal. Churches in Nigeria pay little attention to indigenous Christian Musicians. Most churches will stop at nothing to promote what is foreign. You will agree with me that most churches spend a lot of money to bring in Foreign Christian Musicians to perform in their programs while they pay less attention to the invitation of Christian Musicians in Nigeria. And even if they do invite them, the amount paid or treatment they will receive will be minimal compared to Foreign Christian Musicians. As the church is doing, so are her members. If you check the statistics of downloads The Gaiters, Hillsong and Brooklyn Tabernacle, just to mention a few, get in a day, most Indigenous Christians Musicians will not get it in weeks, if not years.
Conclusively is the insincerity of most Christian Musicians facilitated by the church. Christian Musicians in Nigeria have been stifled by the church. Most of them no longer spend time with God as they used to before they sing. They are after pleasing the church rather than God.
Therefore, this is a call to reawaken the church consciousness in her duty towards the growth of Christian Musicians in Nigeria.