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Kendrick Lamar Brings Religious Themes to Hip-Hop Music

  • Carrie Dedrick
    Religious persecution, missions, Christianity around the world
  • 2015 Feb 04
  • Comments

Kendrick Lamar’s hip-hop music may sound secular at first, with profanity tucked into his rap songs, but the lyrics actually describe the redeeming love of Christ. Buzzfeed reports that Lamar’s music seems to fall somewhere between Christian and secular, and the artist himself is a professed Christian. 


Lamar was brought up in a gang culture, and says his grandmother introduced him to the Bible. He was baptised in 2013, after his Grammy-nominated album Good Kid, m.A.A.d City went platinum. 


Lamar told Complex last year that his work is for God. 


“I got a greater purpose. God put something in my heart to get across and that’s what I’m going to focus on, using my voice as an instrument and doing what needs to be done,” he said. 


According to Buzzfeed, Lamar is not a smoker and drinks rarely unlike many other rap artists. He has been in a relationship with one woman since before he became fame and openly talks about his faith. Still, some Christians doubt that Lamar is a real believer. 


Chad Horton, co-owner of Christian hip-hop blog Rapzilla said, “Some Christians might hear Kendrick rapping about God or Jesus and still reject it, because even though he says he’s Christian, they listen to his other songs and look at his lifestyle and might not feel like they reflect what a Christian is.” 


The rapper is not the only Christian in the hip-hop industry and has befriended critically acclaimed Christian rapper Lecrae. 


Lecrae said that he can turn to Lamar to help him cope with deeper issues. 


“In this industry, a lot of people shake hands and high-five each other, but there’s not a lot of genuine conversation about the deeper things in life. When you’re struggling with your girl or your mom is sick, it’s rare that you find someone that actually wants to talk with you on a real level. So being able to connect with him on spiritual matters is definitely something that I value and appreciate,” he said. 



Publication date: February 4, 2015