Lil Nas X has responded after he was accused of making a “mockery of Jesus” with the artwork to his upcoming single.
The backlash emerged after the rapper and singer announced news of a new single, which is set to arrive later this week, kicking off a new era for the US star.
Titled ‘J Christ’, the track comes accompanied by artwork which shows him outstretched on a cross for the single artwork. Announcing the new music yesterday (January 8), he also shared an accompanying caption which read: “My new single is dedicated to the man who had the greatest comeback of all time!”
Posting on Twitter/X, he also shared four photos of himself in priest robes, alongside the words: “In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, amen.”
But the religious imagery has already provoked backlash, with some accusing the rapper of making a “mockery of Jesus”.
‘”Lil Nas X is nothin more than a plant and a puppet. Nothing he does surprises me anymore. Play with the devil all you want but to make a mockery out of Jesus Christ? Your end is gonna be bitter,” wrote one critic online.
Another said: “Every time I try to like Lil Nas X he has to do some gross thing where he mocks Christianity.”
The rapper, real name Montero Lamar Hill, has now directly responded.
“The crazy thing is nowhere in the picture is a mockery of Jesus,”he wrote.
“Jesus’s image is used throughout history in people’s art all over the world. I’m not making fun of shit,” he added. “Yall just gotta stop trying to gatekeep a religion that was here before any of us were even born. Stfu.”
The 24-year-old rapper also previously faced controversy after claiming that he would sell 666 pairs of limited edition ‘Satan Shoes’ – with each pair containing a drop of real human blood.
The shoes were endorsed by the Church of Satan, but later recalled when Nike threatened a lawsuit for using a design without their permission.
Lil Nas X’s ‘J Christ’ will be released at midnight on 12 January, alongside his first ever self-directed music video.