Fine Arts Bible Study 1

"In the Beginning", Rob Schouten, watercolor on paper, (c) 1987

The Bible begins with the sentence, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” (Genesis 1:1). This proves that there were at least two things around from the very beginning: God, and creativity.

Creativity is the first attribute of God that is mentioned in the Bible. When asked about the attributes of God, often people will cite love, patience, light, holiness, and so on. But, how often do people forget to list creativity when discussing the attributes of God?

***Question to ponder-- Do you think creativity is an important attribute of God that should be celebrated and emulated by His people?***

Jesus’ prayer in John 17 is often summarized “be in the world but not of the world.” That phrase is thrown around by people who don’t like a particular aspect of modern culture, as well as those who want to prove that embracing most aspects of the culture isn’t actually bad.

What does Jesus actually say about the subject? He says, “I have given them your word. And the world hates them because they do not belong to the world, just as I do not. I'm not asking you to take them out of the world, but to keep them safe from the evil one. They are not part of this world any more than I am.” (John 17:14-16). Notice that Jesus doesn’t say anything at all about Fine Arts. In fact, he is not talking about professions, talents, or hobbies at all. He is talking about focus and priorities.

People have twisted this to mean that Christians should only listen to Christian music. Music, like all arts, is neutral. It can become good or bad depending on how and why it is created, and how and why it is used. Just because an artist isn’t a Christian doesn’t invalidate his/her work. And, just because an artist is a Christian doesn’t mean that the artist should be forever boxed in by the often bland and uncreative artistic sensibilities of some people in church leadership.

***Question to ponder- How can you reconcile Jesus' prayer in John 17 with your ability to make or enjoy artistic works that are not cookie-cutter Christian?

***What are your thoughts on these subjects? Read the Bible, pray about these two questions, and post your considerate response/discussion under this topic.


Anonymous said...

Yes, yes and yes! Christians should be creative, by definition. Being in the world but not of the world is a fine line to walk, and each person is a little different.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree. If God wasn't creative, we wouldn't exist. If Christians excepted this part of God more, than we could be very influencial in the world.