The popular gospel filmmaker and president of Zionstones media, Evang. Segun Kolade Okeowo (KSO) has taken his time to explain his stand on the issue of gospel filmmakers featuring secular actors in their productions.

This issue pulled more attention when the novelist, Opeyemi Akintunde Ojerinde featured some popular secular faces in her movie titled ‘Stepping into Maggie’s shoe’. However, it is expected of many to point fingers and blow things out of proportion even when they had no idea of what was behind this act.

KSO, this time around took his time to elucidate his stand when a comment was channeled towards Liz Benson featuring in Stepping in Maggie’s Shoe.

KSO shares;



I was recently taken aback when I stumbled on this statement by the leader of a Christian Drama Ministry.

Over the years, there has been a lingering argument over Christian versus secular actors.

Different comments, insinuations and counter insinuations have proceeded over this issue.

I have personally refrained from making comments about the issue because I thought we were making mountain out of mole hill over the issue.

However, I was jolted out of my quietness by this rather disturbing comment made by the respected brother thus:

*Secular actors might be going to church but are not Christians*

This for me was rather too much and completely disturbing.

God is the owner of ALL gifts. These include creative talents of music, drama and artworks.

*Exodus 35:30-33* *

God gave these gifts to men as He pleased and gave the freedom of making choice of what to do with those gifts.

However, God desires that every man will honour Him with the gifts that He gave to men.

Bezaleel mentioned in *Exodus 35* was a skilled craftsman and he must have practiced the skill before God selected him to work on the Temple after He had breathed on him.

The gifts and talents God gave man can be used in four ways…

1. Serve God alone

2. Provide income alone

3. Serve God and provide income

4. Serve the devil

As far as the world of music/drama is concerned, these four categories are represented thus:

1. *Serve God alone* These are people who have covenanted to use the totality of their to serve God and God alone. Monetary gain is not a consideration.

Some in these category depend on God for personal resources and payment of their bills. It requires great faith and conviction to do this.

Some others have alternate sources of income, so they are able to concentrate on giving their whole attention to God.

The reward for this category is great as God will honour them both here on earth and in heaven. Many Drama Ministers belong to this category.

These could be referred to as *”Daddy’s Cup”* either by their choice or election.

They should not however pride themselves as better than others, it’s a Grace.

They should avoid the error of the senior brother of The Prodigal Son whose attitude at the father’s Celebration of his OWN BLOOD BROTHER showed he would probably prefer his brother NEVER returned.

If you “Think” you are standing, the Scriptures advise you take heed…

This is a good category.

2. *Provide income alone* These category of gifts owners have chosen to use their gifts only to take care of personal needs and pay bills.

For them, *”The gifts of a man maketh way for him”* is appropriate.

For this category, talents and gifts are a selling point as they have no other source of income and have chosen to prosper with the gifts of God in their lives.

This category include Stand Up Comedians, MCs, secular musicians, actors and actresses etc who have chosen to use their gifts to make income.

It includes the artists, painters etc whose daily source of livelihood is their talent.

The temptation these often face is the temptation of going to any length for money.

They need to discern as genuine children of God that not every demand of Pothiphar’s wife is in their job description.

Discerning what offers to take keeps such from crossing into another Category I will discuss later.

Choosing to be in this group is not a sin. However, there are only earthly rewards for choosing this path since the choice is basically to make ends meet.

The rewards are the income, proceeds and profits from the use of their God given talents.

Now is it wrong to use ones God given gift to make profit? The answer is No!!!

So this category is equally acceptable.

This is my advise for those in category 1 & 2 Combined.

These should decide which one will be a priority for them, to use gift for God or the reward.

Prioritizing one of these two will help them at some point in the journey.

The foreseeable danger of prioritizing rewards is that whosoever cannot afford your price tag will be left out of your gift or Grace coverage area.

3. *Serve God and provide income* The combination of the first two groups above is the choice of some. Using their gifts to serve God and make a living at the same time is the choice of this category.

They minister to God with their gifts but also make use of such gifts to make a living when the opportunity arises.

This is applicable to Children of God who use their gifts for ministry and still do some creative assignments including advertising, broadcasting etc.

So, is it wrong to serve God and make a living with the same gift. The answer is no.

So this group is acceptable.

4. *Serve the devil* This group is the worst and not advisable for any Child of God.

When you use your gifts and talents to do things contrary to Gods word, then you are promoting the devil.

Singing a song that draws people away from God. Acting in a drama that offends His word and lead people to do contrary to the will of God !!!

For example, a child of God who chooses to advertise products he can not recommend as a Christian belong to this category !

A child of God who acts in a drama that contradicts his personal convictions as a Christian and says “I was only acting” belong to this category.

This category, I liken to putting your kitchen knife, the gift, in the hand of a thug or an “area-boy” i.e. the Devil. Nobody is safe. Not even you.

Is it wrong to use gifts and talents to promote immoral and anti God messages ? The answer is YES !!!

So this group must never be encouraged at all.

: *So, acting Secular Drama is evil ?*

From my above explanations, we cannot make such blanket pronouncements.

Not every secular content is bad !!!

*SARAFINA* is a secular content and it blessed millions of lives all over the world. The film ” *Gifted Hands”* (The Story of Ben Carson) is surely a great secular content.

There are many secular contents that are good and worth recommendation.

One of the greatest song ever sang by any man (by my own calculation) is *Heal The World* by Michael Jackson!!! (Don’t crucify me, I do not approve of the man, but this particular song inspires me and millions all over the world)

A young Nigerian Musician, Adewale Gold sang *”Orente”* and I have had to sing that to my wife several times.

So, no one can draw a blanket on all secular works. The content will determine!!!

*So secular actors can never be Christians ?*

Of course this is laughable!

Just as there are terrible forms of immoral acts going on in the secular world of creativity, drawing a general opinion is not correct.

There are great and fine believers in the secular world who will not *”bow to Baal”*

The brother who made the sweeping statement that generated this response from me particularly mentioned Liz Benson and wondered why she has not come to join *ANCEDRAM* (as if that is a mark of genuine conversion)

He concluded that pride is what will not allow her “to join us”

Unknown to him, this is what Wikipedia says about Liz Benson…

“Surprisingly, just when her rating as a leading actress had begun to rise even higher than expected, Benson suddenly quit acting in 1996. She became a born-again Christian and started preaching the gospel. The Efik-born actress, took another shot at marriage after her conversion. In a quiet court ceremony in Abuja, She married Bishop Great Ameye of Freedom Family Assembly in 2009 at the Rainbow Christian Assembly in Warri, Delta State. The couple are deeply involved in a Christian Evangelical Ministry. While Benson is an evangelist, her husband, Emeya, is a pastor in Warri, Delta State”

The statement made by our brother I humbly say is unguarded.

He wasn’t the first to say it. One disciple of Jesus said a similar thing, claiming he saw people Casting out devils in Jesus name but not from our Camp, so we distance ourselves. But Jesus said:

*John 10:16*

“And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.”

Before the man-made walls crumble, the wise servants of God will make a door way to welcome the obvious.

*We need to be well guided and avoid spurious comments.*

So what is our duty

As Evangelical Drama Ministers, we are not called to:

1. Castigate

2. Condemn

3. Abandon

4. Abuse

5. Denigrate

…others who have chosen other categories of using their gifts and talents different from ours.

We are to…

1. Admonish

2. Correct

3. Remould

4. Guide aright

5. Influence positively

The Christian Drama Army in Nigeria has grown but it is capable of growing larger as we propagate the word of God.

While some are called to reach some sections, others are called to reach some other climes.

Paul said:

*”By all means, win some”*

*1 Corinthians 9:22*

To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, *that I might by all means save some.*

My humble submission !!!

KSO Speaks !!!

Published By: Ifeoluwa ORISAKAHUNSI
Founder, gospelfilmsng