Pop singer Justin Bieber recently opened up about his Christian faith and credited his relationship with Jesus Christ with saving him from a severe downward spiral.
Speaking to the Radio Times earlier this week, the 21-year-old Grammy Award winner said, "I'm not a bad guy. People might have misconceptions. And hopefully those walls start to come down and they see the real me. But I'm not that guy. I was in a bad place... It wasn't fake. I just was in a... I don't know, dude."
He added: "I just want to get to a place where I can stop apologizing. We all go through trial and error. We all go through moments of downfall. Let's talk about our success now. Let's focus on me now. And I think we're getting there."
The singer credited his faith for his success and transformation: "I pray when I go to sleep. I pray during the day - when I have a problem or when I just wanna thank Him for all He's done for me," he said. "Without God I wouldn't be in this position. He's blessed me with the talent and opportunity. And I feel like there's also a reason I'm here."
As reported by The Gospel Herald, Bieber reportedly abandoned a life of drug use and other damaging habits in 2014 after dedicating his life to Christ. The singer was baptized by Hillsong NYC Pastor Carl Lentz last year, and regularly discusses his newfound relationship with Jesus Christ.
"I could say it over and over again, I'm changing and doing this with my life," Bieber told Complex in an interview earlier this year.
"At this point, my faith has gotten me to where I am...My faith has brought me to a whole other level. I love talking about my faith. Personally, love Jesus and that was my salvation. I want to share what I'm going through and what I'm feeling, and I think it shouldn't be ostracized."
Bieber's longtime manager, Scooter Braun, echoed the singer's sentiments during a recent interview with the New York Times, where he revealed that he believes God saved Bieber from certain death.
"As I started to see it going in the wrong direction, I started to prepare. I put deals in place where he was protected for the long run," Braun said. "And I started to prepare my company to scale, because I was not going to let him work. [After Journals, Bieber's 2013 digital compilation,] he wanted to tour, and I honestly at that time felt, if he toured, he could die."
Although he believed Bieber had truly turned his life around after accepting Christ, Braun waited severals months before allowing the young singer to return to work.
"I looked at Robert Downey Jr. and all these people - when you ask for redemption, people will give it to you. But if you're the boy who cried wolf, they'll destroy you," Braun said. "Once I saw there was consistency I said, OK, now it's time to go back to the professional life. The click happened about 20 months ago. Six months after that, you start seeing me planning a [Comedy Central] roast. And then the Calvin Klein ads come, and the roast comes ..."
Braun emphasized that he is incredibly thankful for the transformation he has seen in Bieber, as the singer's issues were much worse than the public realized.
"The outsiders don't really know what was happening. It was far worse than people realize. And when he is ready, he will tell what he was going through," Braun told the Times. "But it's a hard thing to watch someone you care and genuinely love go through that. I'm really, really happy that's over."