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The Theology of Hip-Hop: Marshall Mathers Edition

If you never thought of rapper Eminem as an artist to turn to for theological insights on the nature and meaning of kairos and kenosis, join the crowd.

However, after viewing this sanctified version of his Oscar-winning 2007 hit single, "Lose Yourself", sung by the Selected of God gospel choir, you might change your mind.

You better lose yourself in the music, the moment;
You own it, you better never let it go.
You only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow;
This opportunity comes once in a lifetime.

About the Author

Luke Hill is a writer and community organizer in Boston. He blogs at dotCommonweal and MassCommons. 



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I'm constantly amazed by the lyrics of popular music these days.  (I read them using closed caption TV.)  Even the love songs are mostly downbeat, in the "Help Me Make it Through the Night" mold.  The young have many reasons to be skeptical, but many seem even cynical.  God bless Eminem and the Selected of God Choir  for going against the grain.

A very moving and inspiration video. Thanks for posting. I wonder about the wisdom of using hip-hop culture as a means to communicate theological messages. There is a danger that the hip-hop culture will not be elevated and transformed through grace and instead the power of religion to transform in postive ways might be lost.

The medium is the message and as long as hip-hop continues to be grossly misogynistic (including Eminem) and associated with violence, gangs, and drugs, its use has to be critically evalutated. I don't think women should EVER be referred to as "hoes", as Eminem does in the original song, nor should they let themselves be referred to using that term.

Still, this group did manage to take the grain of truth and beauty and really elevate it so I am not sure.

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