American rock music legend Alice Cooper, 66, has been known to make shocking music and stage antics that have outraged parents for more than 30 years. However, it may surprise some of his fans that he's actually a practicing Christian.
In a candid article from DC Beacon, Cooper publicly spoke at length for the first time about his love for God, despite the fact he continues to record and tour a theatrical horror-style show.
"My life is dedicated to follow Christ," Cooper declared.
According to DC Beacon, Cooper, who legally changed his name from Vince Furnier, has been credited with paving the way for performers such as Marilyn Manson. However, he contended that his act always had "a sense of humor" and never skewed political or religious.
"I grew up in a Christian household," Cooper said in a video posted on CNS News. "My dad was a pastor, and he was an evangelist for 25 years. I used to go up and do missionary work with him with the Apaches in Arizona. My grandfather was a pastor for 75 years, so I grew up in a Christian home."
However, Cooper admitted that although he was not committed to the faith when he was younger, he still believed in God. According to DC Beacon, Cooper would always feel insulted whenever he was accused of being "satanic"; he elaborated on the references he was trying to make to Ed Masley of The Arizona Republic.
"There was nothing Satanic about what we did at all," Cooper explained. "It was pure 1930s RKO horror movie and comedy put together. But you have to remember, every time we got banned somewhere, ticket sales went crazy."
He originally became a Christian in the 1980s, according to DC Beacon.
"I'm very young in the faith even though I grew up in it," Cooper said in the video. "I do a lot of Bible studies."
His walk in faith started off shaky. It started when he and wife, Sheryl, attended a church with a "hellfire pastor" after alcoholism threatened to destroy his marriage.
"Thirteen years ago, I stopped drinking," Cooper said in the video. "I started going back to church. I was throwing up blood every morning ... I was definitely self-destructive."
Cooper commented that he became a Christian "initially more out of the fear of God, rather than the love of God," noting that "I did not want to go to hell." According to DC Beacon, Cooper viewed his faith as "an ongoing thing."
"Being a Christian is something you just progress in. You learn. You go to your Bible studies. You pray," he said.
In the video, he challenged the stereotypes others may hold about the Christian faith.
"I think people have the wrong concept of Christians," Cooper said, looking up with his eyes in the video. "They think Christians just sit around all the time just 'uhh...' We like to rock and roll. I think that you just need to keep a better watch on your Christian life."
According to DC Beacon, Cooper has tried to avoid falling into the label of "celebrity Christianity," thinking it would be a distraction to the faith overall and the message of Jesus.
"It's really easy to focus on Alice Cooper and not on Christ," Cooper said. "I'm a rock singer. I'm nothing more than that. I'm not a philosopher. I consider myself low on the totem pole of knowledgeable Christians. So, don't look for answers from me."
Despite that admission, Cooper has tried to talk to others in the music industry about his faith who would listen.
"I've had a couple of people that were friends of mine that I've talked to that have vocally said they have [accepted Christ]," Cooper explained. "I have talked to some big stars about this, some really horrific characters ... and you'd be surprised. The ones that you would think are the furthest gone are the ones that are more apt to listen."
Cooper noted that he now attends the Camelback Bible Church in Paradise Valley, Ariz. to focus on developing and strengthening his Christian faith. He started going there after admitting that "the Lord convicted me" of his ways.
"That's where I go now," the American rock star said about his church home. "It's a really good teaching church. It's a strong, Bible-teaching church."
Now that he is trying to follow God's will in his life, he's made a few changes to his signature act. According to DC Beacon, some of his older repertoire is no longer performed, and any song that promotes promiscuous sex and drinking "gets the axe."
"I'm very careful about what the lyrics are," Cooper said. "I tried to write songs that were equally as good, only with a better message."
Cooper also changed his stage persona, seeing himself now as "the prophet of doom."
"Be careful! Satan is not a myth. Don't sit around pretending like Satan is just a joke," Cooper said about his new message. "I think my job is to warn about Satan."
As for the critics who try to judge Cooper by his wild past, the American rock star had a great comeback answer for them.
"I was one thing at one time, and I'm something new," Cooper said. "I'm a new creature now. Don't judge Alice by what he used to be. Praise God for what I am now."
Cooper added that "humans make really lousy gods, so we've got to let God be God, and us be what we are."