“Art Matters For God’s Sake”: CFW Sunday Gospel &Culture Lectures

February 2011

Adrienne Chaplin, author of Art and Soul, is coming to the CFW Gospel and Culture lecture series on February 27 to declare that “Art Matters For God’s Sake.”This statement, while surely a given to Christian artists, may sound a little surprising to the Christian community at large. I asked some leaders in the arts ministry why they think art matters to God and have summarized their responses below:
 
• Art is a vehicle to spread God’s message. God chose to express himself through the art form of narrative (the Biblical story) that, in turn, ignites the human imagination. Interestingly, a variable of the word express showed up in almost every artist’s response. Not only does God express to us his love, care, and presence through the physical world and its art forms, he allows us to express our love for him, each other, and the world, in a similar manner.  
 
• Our artists took into account the many ways art works. For instance, art holds cohesive capabilities. It unites us through shared songs, dance, stories and visual symbols. God also uses art to redeem suffering and refresh the human spirit. Through art, the Holy Spirit conveys truth—not just of our own nature, but also of God’s beauty, abundance, and compassion.
 
• Art helps us mediate the mysterious tension between what is seen and unseen, what is a known and unknown, things sensed and things reasoned. It builds a bridge between structure and chaos, work and play, the common and the extraordinary. 
 
I’m inspired daily by how our artists have grown in their knowledge of God, both through their experience of art and art making. Our Arts Ministry looks forward to introducing the whole congregation to Dr. Chaplin, who I know will help unpack the power of art to enhance our spiritual understanding and illuminate the role of the arts in our culture.


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