Acclaimed rap artist Eminem topped the Billboard Hot Christian Songs chart for the first time in his nearly 30-year career after recently releasing a song praising Jesus Christ.
Eminem, whose full name is Marshall Mathers III, was featured on a remix of “Use This Gospel,” a gospel song performed initially by Kanye West on his 2019 album, Jesus Is King. The remixed version of the song is on DJ Khaled’s new album, God Did.
Eminem’s lyrics included him praising the Lord amid Satan’s attacks. The lyrics read in part,
“I’m holding on, but I don’t know if I can take it much longer / Today’s the day that I put all of my trust and faith in You, Father / Please let this hate make me stronger ‘fore they turn on me like a zombie / It’s like I’m being strangled unconscious / When temptation is almost like Satan is making you tryna take you away from your daughters / Danglin’ a bunch of painkillers on ya.”
The lyrics continue, “So my Savior I call on to rescue me from these depths of despairs / So these demons better step because He is my shepherd / I’m armed with Jesus, my weapon is prayer / Soon as I squeeze it, I’m blessed like sneezes / Call me Yeezus, I’m F’d in the head, maybe I’m bonkers/Regardless, never claimed to be flawless / Long as the mistakes I’ve acknowledged.”
According to The Christian Post, the song reached number 1 on the Billboard Hot Christian Songs chart last week but dropped down to number 5 this week after TobyMac released his new song “The Goodness” featuring Blessing Offor.
Eminem, considered one of the greatest rappers of all time, is notorious for using violence and profanity in his lyrics, including songs that imply a desire to kill his ex-wife or use drugs. Over the years, the Grammy Award-winning rapper has been outspoken about his struggles with mental health.
According to Rapzilla, Eminem has previously referred to himself as “Rap God” and would pray before his shows in the early 2000s, during which he would “rap some of the most profane hip-hop of all time.”
“It was shocking to see Eminem on a gospel rap track,” Rapzilla Editor-in-Chief Justin Sarachik wrote after Eminem’s Christian Billboard debut. Sarachik noted, “[W]hat was even more surprising is that he didn’t say anything controversial or blasphemous. He just rapped about God.”
In recent years, Kanye West has professed to become a Christian, started the trend of secular rappers appearing on Billboard Christian charts with his 2019 album Jesus Is King. The album debuted at the peak of the Top Christian Albums and Top Gospel Albums on its first week of release at the time.
Eminem concluded his verse in “Use This Gospel” by saying: “Bible at my side like a rifle with a God-given gift/Every single day I thank God for/That’s why I pay so much homage/Praises to Jesus, I’ll always.” Fans will be surprised to see Eminem on the gospel charts.