Kanye West has faithful fans searching for answers about his newfound born-again Christian beliefs.
After “Jesus Is King” went to No. 1 on the album charts and every song landed on the Hot 100, searches for “Jesus” and “What do Christians believe?” have spiked on Google.
The 42-year-old’s gospel-rap album is filled with biblical references, to the extent the American Bible Society promised to hand out 1,000 free copies of the Good News Translation to interested fans.
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But requests poured in faster than the group imagined and they’ve already given away 9,000 Bibles across the United States and to fans around the world.
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“We couldn’t be more thrilled at this unexpected demand,” Dr. John Farquhar Plake, the director of ministry intelligence at the American Bible Society, said. “We saw an opportunity — but we never could have dreamed that we’d get such an overwhelming response.”
He added: “Our hope is that these Bibles will allow Kanye fans to get to know the extraordinary person of Jesus, who inspires not just musicians, but millions of believers around the world.”
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Like Plake, several Christian leaders have encouraged West in his faith and pointed to his conversion as part of a wave of Christian revival, as the rapper continues to fill up venues during his increasingly popular “Sunday Services” — this weekend, he will hold his largest Sunday Service yet at Joel Osteen’s megachurch in Houston, Texas.
“No matter what you think about Kanye’s politics, art, or faith, there’s no denying that his comments and album have sparked a huge wave of curiosity and interest,” Robert Briggs, interim president and CEO at the American Bible Society, said. “We love it when these topics emerge in the news cycle and are excited to be able to share the Bible with the curious — no matter their background, interest level or motivation.”
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The group has received thousands of requests – primarily from California, Texas and Florida – since West released his album on Oct. 25. Fans can still request a Bible – completely free of charge – through Nov. 22 at the link abs.bible/kanye.
The album’s release is also prompting fans to search Google with questions like, “What do Christians believe?” and many who have never stepped into a church building are flocking to his Sunday Services, where a pastor presents the gospel plainly.
And while the father of four and husband of Kim Kardashian has received praise for songs like “Closed on Sunday,” which champions Chick-fil-A’s family values, it has not come without controversy.
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This week, an Atlanta pastor who previously hosted West and his Sunday Service choir rebuked the fashion mogul for his support for President Trump and his comments on slavery.