'My Only Mission Is to Spread the Gospel': Kanye West Opens Up about Pornography Addiction, Music, Faith
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His latest album, ‘Jesus is King’, is loaded with
praise songs and Scripture references.
As Christian communities light up in dialogue over Kanye West’s conversion and recent album, the rapper opened up about his faith journey in a recent interview with Zane Lowe on Apple Music’s Beats 1.
“This is such a win for the Kingdom,” Kanye said, according to Faithwire. “For Kanye to come back home, from going from ‘Jesus Walks’ to ‘I Love It’, to say to God, ‘I tried it my way, it’s not working out. Everything is in shambles. I’m ending up in debt, making this money but still ending up in debt. My public standing is in shambles. I’m not in good shape. I’m having ups and downs with my health. People calling me crazy. People not wanting to sit with me. I had to just give it up to God.”
West recently moved to a ranch in Wyoming with his family. When Lowe asked him what he hopes the ranch will be in 20 years, West acknowledged that he didn’t know, that God would give him direction.
“I have some visions,” he said, “but the more that I’m in service to God, I just clear my head and wake up more empty every day and let God do the driving and just use me as he may. You make plans, and God laughs.”
Other the past year, West has slowly changed after his conversion last April, becoming more at peace with God and seeking Him in his work. He recently committed to abandoning secular music and pledged to only make gospel music.
In the interview, he acknowledged that he has struggled with a “rude spirit” and prays to have more grace in his speech. He also admitted that an addiction to pornography caused him to make poor decisions and fueled his ego.
“Playboy was my gateway into full-blown pornography addiction,” he said. “My dad had a Playboy left out at age 5, and it’s affected almost every choice I made for the rest of my life. From age 5 to now having to kick the habit. And it just presents itself in the open, like it’s OK. And I stand up and say, you know, it’s not OK.”
He also referred to the 2009 Taylor Swift incident in which he interrupted her acceptance speech.
“That Playboy that I found when I was 5 years old was written all over the moment that I was at the MTV Awards,” he said. “… My mom had passed a year before, and I had said, ‘Some people drown themselves in drugs. And I drown myself in my addiction.’ Sex. That’s what fed the ego, too. Money, clothes, cars, accolades, social media, paparazzi photos, going to Paris fashion week, all of that.”
But now that West has accepted Christ, he sees his mission much more clearly.
“Everything I do, even designing a shoe, is for the Church … It’s my only mission and calling, is to spread the gospel.”
Kanye West Releases Highly Anticipated Jesus Is King Gospel Album
After a several-months long delay, rapper and singer Kanye West launched his Jesus is King album on Monday, October 28, 2019.
The release features 11 songs loaded with Scripture and praises to Christ, as reported by Faithwire.
“To my fans. Thank you for being loyal & patient. We are specifically fixing mixes on ‘Everything We Need’ ‘Follow God’ & ‘Water.’ We not going to sleep until this album is out,” West wrote on Twitter Friday morning. The album was released that afternoon.
Several artists commented on the beauty of the album’s lyrics.
“Regardless of how you feel about #KanyeWest the content is refreshing to hear. God will get His glory. And #JesusIsKing,” said Christian rapper Lecrae in a tweet.
Artist Marco McKinnis also tweeted, “God is really working through Ye. If you don’t recognize that, it’s time to catch up.”
West doesn’t skate around Scripture in his lyrics. In the song “Selah,” the rapper sings: “They say the week start on Monday / But the strong start on Sunday / Won’t be in bondage to any man / John 8:33 / We the descendants of Abraham / Ye should be made free / John 8:36 / To whom the Song set free is free indeed / He saved a wretch like me.”
West also pays homage to popular Christian fast-food restaurant, Chick-fil-A. In his song "Closed on Sunday" West sings: "Closed on Sunday / You my Chick-fil-A / You're my number one / With the Lemonade / Raise our sons / Train them in the faith / Trough temptations / Make sure they're wide awake."
The album came after months of West’s Sunday Service tours where he and a gospel choir traveled the country hosting free worship services. West would sometimes preach at the services, warning people against the dangers of social media and encouraging them to look to God.
California pastor Adam Tyson was also allowed to share the gospel at many of the services to packed crowds. Tyson also affirmed changes in West as he’s discipled him for several months.
“The fruit that I’m seeing is he’s no longer continuing in some of the sin patterns that he was before he came to Christ,” Tyson said. “Right now, every day, he is living and walking with God, so from what I can tell, there’s no reason for me not to encounter that and be a part of that.”
The rapper also announced his exit from secular music, claiming he will only make gospel music from here on out.
“Now that I’m in service to Christ, my job is to spread the gospel, to let people know what Jesus has done for me,” West said in an interview with Beats 1 Zane Lowe. “… It’s my only mission and calling, is to spread the gospel.”