Trip Lee, the stage name of rising Christian rapper William Lee Barefield III, finds Jesus irresistible even though his art tells him God is against him.
"The fact that God is for me. That is huge for me when I am thinking about fighting my own sins because my art tells me that God is against you. God wants to keep you from something that is pleasureful, something that will bring you pleasure, so you need to disobey God," said Lee in a video interview posted on the Desiring God website on Sunday.
But Lee, who is mentored by Grammy-nominated Christian rapper Lecrae, says he looks to his favorite Bible passage, Romans 8, and especially verses 31-39, to remind him that he is more than a conqueror in all things through Christ's love.
"There was a time when I was in my sins and I was God's enemy, but now I have been purchased in Christ and God is for me. He is not going to do anything or command anything that is not ultimately for my good and for His glory," declared Lee passionately.
"It's incredible and it drives me to Jesus. It drives me to want to follow him. It drives me to love him knowing that the most important thing in me is that I am in Christ and there is nothing that can take that away from me."
Lee attends Boyce College, the undergraduate school of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary – the flagship seminary of the Southern Baptist Convention and where well-known theologian R. Albert Mohler, Jr. is president.
The talented rapper, who has been nominated for several Dove Awards and won the Stellar Award for Best Hip Hop Album in 2011, is known for entertaining lyrics that upon deeper reflection convey poignant Gospel truths.
In his 2012 song "I'm Good (Feat. Lecrae)," he raps:
My life is full of pain problems and such
But I'm focused on forever in eternity's touch
While the world try to fight me Pharisees try to stone me
I am Tebow in the fourth quarter they can't hold me
Ya the Lord is my coach got me off in the zone
Tell my mama that I'm good when he carry me home
And in his 2008 song "Real Vision (Feat. Tedashii)," he raps:
Look I don't know what they told you but if it don't match up
With His holy Word then homie they need to back up
Some they pretend like they get Him they twisting facts up
That's why we dig in the scriptures to know the Master
We want to see Him clear like a big screen plasma
Half of the cats I seen they don't really know the Lord
They think my views are extreme, think I'm going overboard
But they ain't read a page of the place where He's spoken for Himself in the matters, man that's what I be quoting for
Some say He don't exist, nah that don't even make sense
These days in the church, most cats got it twisted
Don't let them fool you on how we posed to live this
For instance, some say to come to Christ for riches
Or maybe your blessing, but my question is what is this? Cause that ain't the gospel, that if you put your faith in Him
To come to the Savior, and then you'll rake that paper in? Face it friends, they made Jesus they holy ATM|
Paul would appalled, this gospel would be disgrace to Him
This false gospel strips Him of His flyness
Lee, who released his fourth full length studio album The Good Life in April 2012, concluded his interview with the Desiring God ministry by declaring why he loves the passage in Romans 8 the most in the Bible:
"It (Bible) says we are like sheep being slaughter out there. You can slaughter me. Even marriage is until death do us part," Lee said. "You can kill me and you can still not separate me from the love of God in Christ. And that is really good news, and that drives me to want to follow him, to love him more."