The Gospel According to Kanye?
Kanye West is one of the most recognizable rappers and music producers in hip hop. He’s married to Kim Kardashian. He’s got a famous line of clothing. He might however be most known for his ego—there’s a joke that you proclaim the depths of your love for somebody by saying, “I love you more than Kanye loves Kanye.”
Despite his fame, Kanye’s life has been tumultuous to put it mildly:
- Mental breakdowns and depression
- Run-ins with the law
- And his lyrics on previous albums can be shocking to say the least
Several years ago, he infamously stormed the stage and took a music award from Taylor Swift. It was not a good moment. His life was seemed perpetually chaotic, erratic, and manic.
A few months ago, he dropped a new album that has lit up the charts. It went #1 on the music charts and every single song landed on the Hot 100. The title of the album? “JESUS IS KING.”
Google searches for “Jesus” and “What do Christians believe?” immediately spiked after the release.
His “Sunday Service” concerts have been selling out around the country. A preacher joins him in all the performances and preaches the good news. The American Bible Society has given out 9000 Bibles to confused Kanye West fans to help them figure out “what the heaven is going on” in his life and music.
You may have seen when Kanye had a “carpool karaoke” interview with late night TV host James Corden. However, it was not done in a taxi cab, but in an airplane with Kanye’s 150 member gospel choir. James Corden said later about the interview,
“Being on that plane, surrounded by that choir, sitting with him, I’ll never, ever forget what that choir sounded like on that airplane. It was an astonishing thing and I really thought, this is a once in a lifetime thing that I’ll never ever forget. It was an incredible moment.”
—He joked that he was “close” to turning his life over to Jesus after the experience.
Granted, JESUS IS KING isn’t Handel’s Messiah—but it’s still pretty awesome. In it you hear how the Mighty God has grabbed hold of a mighty ego. The album’s been on heavy rotation on our family’s Spotify account.
What happened? There are doubters and there are haters, but I think Kanye has had a real encounter with the Mighty God.
‘I was just under the weight of my sin,” Kanye said, “and I was being convicted that I was running from God, and I knew I needed to make things right, so I came to Christ.” Then alluding to a passage from Isaiah (9:2), Kanye said, “I came out of darkness and came into the light.”
Enjoy a sample from “God Is”:
Everything that hath breath, praise the Lord
Worship Christ with the best of your portions
I know I won’t forget all He’s done
He’s the strength in this race that I run
Every time I look up, I see God’s faithfulness
And it shows just how much He is miraculous
I can’t keep it to myself, I can’t sit here and be still
Everybody, I will tell ’til the whole world is healed
King of Kings, Lord of Lords, all the things He has in store
From the rich to the poor, all are welcome through the door
You won’t ever be the same when you call on Jesus’ name
Listen to the words I’m sayin’, Jesus saved me, now I’m sane
And I know, I know God is the force that picked me up
I know Christ is the fountain that filled my cup
I know God is alive, yeah
Mighty God: Isaiah 9:6-7 (NRSV)
Yes, the Messiah is our Mighty God—
Whether you’re Handel or a hip hop artist, the same Jesus is still rescuing, touching, healing, and sending us out in his powerful name, that’s the same yesterday, today, and forever. Amen.
Grace and Peace,
Jots and Tittles Blog
Immanuel Presbyterian Church
November 20, 2019
August 6, 2019
July 4, 2019