We have an old Baptist hymnal that we use for our family worship. I like singing these with the kids because in them is a great depth of Christian experience. Through singing these songs we learn of the holiness of God (Holy, Holy, Holy), the fullness of my own need for the Lord (Out of My Bondage), and the amazing depth of the love I have received (O The Deep Deep of Jesus). And then there are those hymns that were written for the sole purpose of motivating people to go out of the pews and spread the Good News. These are hymns like: “So Send I You,””Jesus Shall Reign Wherever the Sun” and “Onward Christian Soldiers.”
But I do not only have my kids listen to hymns, we listen to a lot of rap. Why, you ask? For much the same reason. There is a movement of Christians who use rap to declare the Good News of Jesus Christ and encourage Christians. There are rap songs that teach my kids about original sin (In Adam All Die, Shai Linne), the 9 Marks of a Healthy Church (see album The Church Called and Collected), and even an entire album dedicated to calling my boys to take leadership in the home and at church (Man Up). But the thing I like the most about rap is that it motivates me like nothing else. When I am feeling disappointed because language learning is so difficult, or because of my lack of patience with the kids, or because the task ahead of us is so daunting, I listen to rap. These songs do not just tell me the truth, they make me want to fight for the kingdom. They make me want to press on. So, in an effort to spread the encouragement, I have linked to some of the best Christian rap out there.
Here are my Top 4 Christian Rap Songs for Spiritual Encouragement:
1. Don’t Waste Your Life, Lecrae
2. War, Trip Lee
I had the excellent opportunity to hear Trip Lee sing this one in person in Dallas. How can you not be inspired by: “The Son came down to the wasteland we in, a death filled mess he’ll win no leavin’. No rest ’til death’s killed, the fight ain’t even, and death won’t be left still breathin’!”
For those completely uninitiated, you might want to check out Challies’ Middle Aged White Guy’s Guide to Christian Rap.
*Just for purposes of full disclosure, I was listening to Christian rap way before it was cool. My very first cassette tape was DC Talk and I (literally) walked around with my boombox on my shoulder blasting “I Love Rap Music!”