All We Got Were These Queequeg Piercings

There is an old joke that has an evangelical say something like this to a liberal—“I’ll call you a Christian if you call me a scholar.” But whenever conservative believers enter into the world of such trade-offs, the end result is always something like Simple Simon going to the fair. They come home, if they come home at all, shivering in their skivvies. They don’t get the scholarship, and they lose the faith once delivered. When you sell your birthright for a mess of pottage, at some point in the affair you find yourself with no birthright anymore and no pottage anymore either.

Lewis stated the principle this way:

“It is since Christians have largely ceased to think of the other world that they have become so ineffective in this. Aim at Heaven and you will get earth ‘thrown in’: aim at earth and you will get neither.”[1]

In a similar context, I recently argued this: “Wanting to Matter is the central lust of evangelicalism, and this is why evangelicals are having such trouble believing the Word (John 5:44).” Not only have evangelicals wanted to matter in the world of scholarship, they have also wanted to matter in the world of the arts. And then what happened?

This desire has opened up a broad way for those have wanted to address our need to “engage with culture.” I do not object to the denotations of these words—one of the tags on this blog is “Engaging the Culture.” That’s a good thing. (By the way, speaking of this, stay tuned for our roll out on next year’s Grace’s Agenda.) So engaging with culture is not only grand, it is also necessary. But many use the tagline “engage with culture” as cover for their developing plans to compromise with culture, surrender to culture, or otherwise lick the boots of culture.

As we have engaged with culture, this has entailed engaging with the arts. But what engaging with the arts has meant practically is that many of us have decided—instead of giving ourselves to the hard word of aesthetic discipline—to imitate the world by We are not engaging with culture, we are learning to preen and prance as though we had.copping a pose instead. We are not engaging with culture, we are learning to preen and prance as though we had.

If you want to learn what the “tell” is for this, look for this combination—claims for the aesthetic development coupled with a dramatic increase in ugliness, amateurism, or incompetence. I can’t tell you how many times I have heard Christians urging us to leave behind our suburban white bread ho-hummery, to strive for excellence in the arts, with the disconcerting result that they are then wide open to all kinds of suggestions coming from the Faction for the Uglification of America. The list of their accomplishments is a very long one, but the prep work for it came in the early stages from people supporting our calls for truth, goodness, and beauty. But then what we got was blue hair, tattoos, and Queequeg piercings.

What we got was a creepy gay offertory at Tim Keller’s church, one that ended with an artistic tip of the hat to the forthcoming threesome. I suppose as a dance it was a success in that none of them fell over, but as an attempt at Christian art, it was ugly. Leave aside the moral question for a moment. I simply want to point out that it failed on the very grounds being used to justify it. You have appealed to Caesar, to Caesar you will go. If you are willing to shatter scriptural standards for the sake of the artistic triumph, that is the first problem. But the second was that your artistic triumph was actually lame. It was poor. It was bad. It made sensitive souls go ick ick ick.

Evangelicals in the arts—apart from a robust, resurgent, aggressive, and somewhat belligerent Puritanism—are always going to be squishy and soft. They are going to enter the salons diffidently, hats in hand, shuffling quietly. They are not going to notice the “kick me” sign that someone stuck on their back.

I mentioned something in passing the other day about Eugene Peterson’s shipwreck, his train derailment, his helicopter crash, his apostasy. But there is another element to this. The soft evangelical, the moderate, and the burgeoning liberal all have this in common. They fancy themselves attuned to the arts. They believe that—unlike the fundamentalist rubes—they actually care about how the glancing light through the stained glass falls upon the altar. But again, aside from the questions of truth and morality—“Other than that, how was the play, Mrs. Lincoln?”—we need to remind ourselves that the aesthetic refinement of the compromisers is not all that.

Here is an observation I made a few years ago about Eugene Peterson’s aesthetic understanding in Wordsmithy.

But it was his 2002 colloquial rendition of the Bible, The Message, where Peterson really made it as a writer. But translating the Bible means translating the Psalms, and the Psalms are one of the poetic glories of all human history. Now Peterson’s conviction is that “give us this day our daily bread” and “pass the potatoes” come “out of the same language pool” (p. 2). He wants continuity of language whether we are studying the Bible or fishing for rainbow trout (p. 4).

The misfire result is that in the Message Psalms he has taken a collection of Hebrew glories and crammed them full of English cliches — “lie through their teeth,” “within an inch of my life,” “the end of my rope,” “only have eyes for you,” “down on their luck,” “every bone in my body,” “sit up and take notice,” “rule the roost,” “the bottom has fallen out,” “free as a bird,” “kicked around long enough,” “my life’s an open book,” “at the top of my lungs,” “nearly did me in,” “sell me a bill of goods,” “wide open spaces,” “stranger in these parts,” “hard on my heels,” “from dawn to dusk,” “skin and bones,” “turn a deaf ear,” “eat me alive,” “all hell breaks loose,” “raise the roof,” “wipe the slate clean,” “miles from nowhere,” and, as they say on the teevee, much, much more. If cliches were candied fruit, walnuts, and raisins, the Book of Psalms in The Message would be a three-pound fruitcake.

Aesthetic relativism can keep bad artists afloat for a little bit. But they all eventually sink, the evangelicals first.

[1] C. S. Lewis, A Year with C. S. Lewis: Daily Readings from His Classic Works, ed. Patricia S. Klein, 1st ed. (New York: HarperOne, 2003), 358.

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Mark B. Hanson
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Mark B. Hanson

Petersen’s Bible paraphrase reminds me of C. S. Lewis’ line, “Whatever is not eternal is eternally out-of-date.”

John F. Martin
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John F. Martin

Greetings! I’ll add my current pet-peeve with today’s ‘worship’ music; since when did ATMOSPHERE become a spiritual word? It doesn’t appear in my ESV or KJV Bibles…maybe it’s a The Message word?

adad0
Member

What was peterson’s particular ship wreck, besides “the message”?
(Which it appears he did not get.)

John F. Martin
Guest
John F. Martin
Daniel Fisher
Member

He was misquoted? I went and read the original interview – The interviewer asked him, simply and point blank, if he would perform a same-sex marriage ceremony. He gave a hard-to-misquote, one-word response; namely, “yes.”

Then he tries to clarify that by saying “yes”, what he should have said was “no”. It was just that he had been confused and taken off guard by the extemporaneous nature of the interview…?

I’m not sure what disappoints me more, his initial “yes” response or his defense (being that he was caught off guard considering the difficulty of the question).

John F. Martin
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John F. Martin

Both disappoint. Definitely not responses from either Luke 12:11-12 or 1st Peter 3:15.

Tony Allen Dinkins
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Tony Allen Dinkins

I agree. He seemed to just keep digging the hole deeper and deeper. Let your “yes be yes “and your” no be no”.

adad0
Member

Thanks for the source issue.

MeMe
Guest

Aesthetic relativism versus truth and beauty? Do Christians understand that art is a form of communication,that it is conveying an idea, a concept? I suspect not so much. The art world itself does not really grasp this, hence you get an orange circle on white canvas selling for thousands of dollars. If you care so, so much about the impact of Islamaphobia on global warming and have lived on the streets (with a trust fund) for two years, you will get an entire gallery and be the toast of the town for months. Extra credit points if you have managed… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

I don’t think art has to convey anything but itself. If the orange circle on the white canvas gives pleasure to the viewer, that is all it has to do. As my fellow Canadian Marshall McLuhan said in the long ago, “The medium is the message.”

Farinata degli Uberti
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Farinata degli Uberti

Come now, don’t be like that! You really think there’s no important difference between a cathedral and a mud puddle if my four year-old can enjoy both?

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

No, of course, I think there is a difference. But I don’t think that difference lies in the meaning, which is the point I think MeMe was making. Obviously, if the orange circle brings me some sort of pleasurable aesthetic experience (for example, suppose it makes me feel warm, or makes me smile, or makes me notice that the circle has quite unbelievably complicated color shifts), there must be some level of technical skill. I have seen a couple of cathedrals which I found holy but very unappealing aesthetically taken overall. There are parts of the inside of the Cathedral… Read more »

MeMe
Guest

Jilly two things, you said, ” I don’t think art has to convey anything,” and “Obviously, if the orange circle brings me some sort of pleasurable aesthetic experience….’ What “you think” and what “you feel” do not actually define what is objectively aesthetic. The fact that you don’t believe art conveys a message does not mean there is no message being conveyed. I’m not trying to sound harsh here, but it is what it is. There is no magical light lurking beneath that orange dot, it is as silly as putting a designer label on something and charging ten times… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

I would question whether there is such a thing as objective aesthetic value. I would also clarify that I realize that sometimes visual art does convey a message; my point was that it does not always, and that even when it does, its message does not necessarily either enhance or destroy my pleasure in the work. Our interaction with art is individual and personal. Once the painter has released it to public viewing, he loses control over the meanings, interpretations, and emotions that attach to it. When I decide to spend money on an original painting and hang it on… Read more »

John Callaghan
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John Callaghan

The wonderful thing about art is that we get to like what we like. Well, that is only true to a degree … David Brooks wrote a much-discussed column a few days ago. In it he argues that “cultural codes” are more prevalent and insidious than we like to think. I much prefer this Gudea of Lagash to the Guernica of Picasso. I would not condemn anyone who taste ran to the opposite direction: “de gustibus non est disputandum“. Still, I do wonder how much artistic taste is wholly a matter of free will and how much is a matter… Read more »

Jill Smith
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Jill Smith

There is a lot of truth in what you say. On the other hand, one of the compensations of advancing years is that you stop being timid and apologetic about what you like. In an undergraduate art history seminar, I would have been far too intimidated to say that I actually really like Edward Hopper, the depressive’s Norman Rockwell! “Guernica” leaves me cold, but then so does “The Night Watch.” I think what troubles me is the assumption, which one encounters far too often, that a painting (or novel) which many people neither like nor understand is therefore a giant… Read more »

Farinata
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Farinata

I would say, rather, that we have been conditioned to look for profound depth in modern, abstract art by a snobby intelligentsia. That doesn’t make it art – e.g. something requiring skill to produce. One may well be able to take innocent pleasure at random patterns in a pile of hay, or the complex shading of a coffee stain. But spilling coffee is not art. Put it this way – skill can only be demonstrated when there is a way to do something badly. Can you imagine what a poorly executed Jackson Pollock painting would look like? Pretty much the… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

If a child could master cubism, I would be amazed. I have no doubt that there are people who take their artistic opinions from elitist journals, but I disagree that everyone who claims to enjoy a certain kind of art is either mendacious or hornswoggled. I think it more generous to take people at their word–whether they claim to love Braque or Thomas Kinkade. A great deal of ultra-modern art doesn’t appeal to me, but when people tell me why they feel moved by a certain work, I take for granted that they see in it something I simply am… Read more »

John Callaghan
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John Callaghan

Certainly, charity demands that we accept people at their word when they express an artitistic preference. Art, though, is like language. It communicates ideas and feelings. Modern art, having largely abandonned recognizable and/or beautiful depictions of the human form, is incapable of expressing certain ideas to the viewer. Like language, appreciation of art is something that is learned – both implicitly and explicitly. One cannot cast blame on those who have been reared with a limited or stunted vocabulary for that fact – but one can hope to show them the more complex world that exists outside their understanding: “The… Read more »

John Callaghan
Guest
John Callaghan

And the link: “The Rain in Spain

melody
Member
melody

Bob Dylan and many other Rock singers had very nice singing voices but nothing that would make them stand out from the crowd. Then they started making their voice sound rather awful (but still on pitch, mind you) and, voila, new art was born. As a public high school choir director who listens to the most awful of auditions, I always tell my students, “don’t try this at home” when they want to imitate the latest diva. Best to become a DJ who can wow the crowd by scratching the needle across the vinyl.

bethyada
Member

I actually don’t mind the Message. I haven’t read a lot of it. I grew up on the NIV and generally prefer the ESV currently.

That said, the Psalms do fall flat.

What I have like about the NT (Message) is that there are times that I see something new in a verse. I go back to a more literal version and the concept is there but I hadn’t noticed it. (And at times the Message paraphrase gets it completely wrong too).

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

This Catholic can’t stand anything except original KJV. Weird, isn’t it?

bethyada
Member

This Catholic

I think you mean: this English major

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Well, yes. If anything could induce me to switch teams, it would be the unrevised Book of Common Prayer. The pre-1928 wedding service is gorgeous. “With this ring, I thee wed; with my body I thee worship; with all my worldly goods I thee endow.” What woman wouldn’t think a little submission was a small price to pay?

Kevin Brendler
Guest
Kevin Brendler

“Eugene Peterson’s … apostasy.”

Call a thing what it is.

Keith Buhler
Guest
Daniel Fisher
Member

Sure, but Is it not still so terribly concerning that his defense was, essentially, “it was too hard a question, and I wasn’t prepared for it since I didn’t have that question in advance of the interview.” in my own ministry, that would typically be what I would call a “softball” question. (If not a tee-ball). The fact that Peterson found the question so difficult, or needed time to even reflect at all before eventually landing on the “right” answer, speaks volumes to me. This is in the category of having to retract one’s statement denying the divinity of Christ,… Read more »

TheMuffinMan
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TheMuffinMan

“The soft evangelical, the moderate, and the burgeoning liberal all have this in common. They fancy themselves attuned to the arts.” Good call. It’s easy for softies and liberals to do this now, because the pagan culture at-large is covered (literally) in rainbows, love-wins mania, and scantily clad women. If this were the time of the early church, the same Christians holding rainbow flags outside their church would be posting about the next gladiatorial match. I can hear their rationalization now… “Yes, but I’m engaging the culture! I’m light in the darkness when I sit in that audience! Besides, have… Read more »

Bro. Steve
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Bro. Steve

For the record, we put prints of Carl Block paintings in our home. And no tattoos.

http://www.carlbloch.org/The-Crucifixion-large.html

Jane
Member

I part company with the strict, Reformed interpretation of the second commandment on exegetical grounds. But if I didn’t have the objective reason, I’d be tempted to be swayed by my subjective love for stuff like this:

comment image

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

I’ve been trying to Google this, Jane. Who painted it?

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Thank you!

Krychek_2
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Krychek_2

Would that evangelicals understood that everything Doug said in this post applied with equal force to support for Trump, as to which Christians have also exchanged their birthright for a mess of pottage. And the most amazing thing to come out of it is seeing just how cheaply the Congressional GOP is willing to sell their souls for.

John F. Martin
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John F. Martin

Greetings Krychek_2! If I read your comment correctly, you wish that I (an evangelical), would understand that my support of the President puts me in the same category as Esau? Your second sentence is less clear to me…but apparently the GOP got a worse deal than bluesman Robert Johnson? You seem pretty familiar with the Bible (birthrights and souls), yet as I understand you don’t believe it to be the word of God. Why the concern for birthrights and souls then? If you’re holding me (and Christians) to our own standard, I can respect that. I call those people fish-cleaners.… Read more »

Krychek_2
Guest
Krychek_2

John, I totally disbelieve the Koran — piss be upon it — but that doesn’t mean I want the Islamic world to be the huge mess that it is today, because as you may have noticed, their problems have a tendency to spill over into the rest of the world. So if Islam can be “fixed” — whatever that may mean — then I’m in favor of it on purely pragmatic grounds, even though my real first choice would be for it to disappear altogether. And that’s generally my approach to Christian conservatism. I’m not a fan, and I don’t… Read more »

John F. Martin
Guest
John F. Martin

But since I operate under the premise that as a Christian my Christianity is supposed to spill over into the rest of the world (my job, my boys’ baseball team, my visits to Walmart); I want my problems to be your problems…and vice versa. As for my personal support for the President (who happens to be Trump), I actually hope that it is catastrophic for Christianity. To me that means taking away anything that makes my Christianity an advantaged position in society, anything that enables an easy-believe-ism or tempts me to be an American pharisee. Using your Islam example, if… Read more »

Krychek_2
Guest
Krychek_2

John, even though I don’t share your premises, what I am about to say is written as if I do. I view evangelical Christianity’s alliance with Trump as being comparable to Jehosephat’s alliance with Ahab: In exchange for temporary political power, Christianity has allied itself with a man whose leadership, values and personal life are about as totally and completely at odds with Christian values as one might imagine. Such alliances never work well, as Micaiah warned Jehosephat, and as Jehosephat found out to his pain. And furthermore, people who are not Christians, which is much of the country, understand… Read more »

John F. Martin
Guest
John F. Martin

Thank you for your detailed explanation. I hear in your reply that when I tie my Christianity to certain things, I’m hurting my personal witness. That would seem to go for the church as well. Being a Christian man, a Christian dad, or a Christian at a soup kitchen is what society expects…being a Christian Republican, a Christian Idahoan, or a Christian American is less acceptable in the marketplace of ideas, and it sounds to me like affirming the latter makes you question the former. God gives and takes away. He is in the storm and the calm. I pray… Read more »

Krychek_2
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Krychek_2

John, the issue is not that you are a Christian Republican. The issue is that last year, the Republican Party nominated Nero to be their leader and Christians mostly fell in line in the hope of getting some political gain.

John F. Martin
Guest
John F. Martin

I don’t know enough about Nero to be dangerous…but if Trump burns down Washington and blames it on Christians while fiddling it will make for ‘Must See TV!’ From a utilitarian point of view I do think some have given too much support for not enough return…but even that resembles something Jesus said to do.
Tomorrow will have its own troubles…thanks for your replies today.

John Callaghan
Guest
John Callaghan

A better analog to Trump is Ulysses Everett McGill. He was the man with the escape plan and we were chained by the ankles.

Except, the hope in electing Trump was not gain but survival.

Katecho
Member

Krychek_2 wrote: And furthermore, people who are not Christians, which is much of the country, understand full well that it’s an alliance of expediency in which Christianity sold out its basic premises for political gain, and they view it with utter contempt for the Christian church. … And they also know full well that Trump’s public support for Christianity is all lies and expedience as well. It’s ironic to watch a utilitarian try to lecture others against expediency. Krychek_2 should be praising Trump’s utilitarian prowess. Regardless of the validity of his arguments, on Christian terms, Krychek_2 is entirely too full… Read more »

Krychek_2
Guest
Krychek_2

Expedience, per se is not a virtue; gassing Jews does not become a moral act merely because the Nazis were good at it. The end sought must itself be a moral end.

Be that as it may, even if I were making an argument inconsistent with my world view, that doesn’t change the fact that Christians who supported Trump sold their birthright for a mess of not very good pottage. As usual, you can’t win on the merits, so you’ve changed the subject.

John Callaghan
Guest
John Callaghan

Krychek, Recall that Jesus ate with tax collectors and prostitutes (the two most despicable occupations back then), and spoke rather disparagingly about the Pharisees who were the most respectable of folks at the time (at least according to their own estimation). So, it’s a dicey thing to posit who he’d be hanging with today. One could think of Christian support for Trump in this way: Imagine you were asked to choose between two architects who were available to build a bridge. The first is a coarse, foul-mouth fellow who you would be eager to keep far away from your daughters.… Read more »

Krychek_2
Guest
Krychek_2

John Callaghan, that’s only true if you disbelieve the sovereignty of God. If you believe God is sovereign, then you simply don’t go with an evil choice and trust God for the outcome. How is it that I, an unbeliever, seem to have a better grasp of divine sovereignty than most of the Christians here? Nowhere in Scripture does God say to pick the lesser of two evils; on the contrary, it repeatedly says to not do evil and trust God for the results. If Ahab and Athaliah were on the ballot, you really think God would have told Israel… Read more »

John Callaghan
Guest
John Callaghan

There was an important distinction between the two candidates: It is incorrect to say that the coming election poses a choice between two evils. For ethical and aesthetic reasons, there may be some bad in certain candidates, but badness consists in doing bad things. Evil is different: it is the deliberate destruction of truth, virtue and holiness. While one may pragmatically vote for a flawed candidate, one may not vote for anyone who advocates and enables unmitigatedly evil acts, and that includes abortion. “In the case of an intrinsically unjust law, such as a law permitting abortion or euthanasia, it… Read more »

Krychek_2
Guest
Krychek_2

John Callaghan, I think that analysis has it completely backward. If anything, Hillary was flawed and Trump was evil. If I understand your views correctly, your objections to Clinton are mostly over policy differences, which is not the same thing as her being an evil person. In Trump’s case, even if I agreed with his policy positions, this is a man who has turned greed into a virtue and who boasts of his own sinful behavior. This is a man who brags about assaulting women and who stiffs his employees and contractors out of the wages due them. This is… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

I don’t think we have ever had a president who has a history of boasting about his sexual feelings for his daughter, starting when she was around 12. I have read defenders of Trump, even here, who say that he just says what everybody thinks and is too cowed by the forces of political correctness to say aloud. I hope that in this instance they are mistaken.

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

I don’t think that moral imbecility can rise to evil.

John Callaghan
Guest
John Callaghan

We’ve had presidents in the past who have done bad things; we’ve never had one that bragged about it. FDR and JFK had multiple mistresses. LBJ amassed a $100 million fortune in elected office. The Clintons amassed a similar sum in between his presidency and her almost-presidency. Trump’s flaws have, over the years, been less hidden than almost anyone else’s in public life. That he did not have the decency to cover them up could be held against him … or perhaps he was just being less deceitful. In any event, that candidate Trump was a more objectively bad person… Read more »

John Callaghan
Guest
John Callaghan

And here’s the link to the podcast: https://www.samharris.org/podcast/item/triggered

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

John, what would you do if confronted with two pro-abortion candidates? Would that require you to refrain from voting?

John Callaghan
Guest
John Callaghan

No. In the unfortunate – but all too common – situation where the ballot features only pro-abortion candidates, you vote for the one who you forsee will cause less harm than the other.

Krychek_2
Guest
Krychek_2

John Callaghan, yes, Jesus ate with tax collectors and prostitutes. That doesn’t mean he would have supported them for leadership positions.

John Callaghan
Guest
John Callaghan

Actually, Jesus chose the most unlikely, non-respectable men for leadership positions:

Which when Simon Peter saw, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying: Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord.

Krychek_2
Guest
Krychek_2

When Trump does that, I’ll consider it an appropriate analogy.

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Lack of respectability is not a major issue depending on its cause. Lack of any ethical sense–or even any awareness that ethics exist–is a different matter. Zaccheus knew that robbing taxpayers was immoral. What has Trump ever said that indicates an awareness of a moral code, a realization that he has violated it (as we all have), and a willingness to repent and try to do better?

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Krychek, I think Caligula is closer to the mark. You know, the one who made his horse a senator.

Now I wonder what made me think of that.

Krychek_2
Guest
Krychek_2

Well, some might argue that Caligula at least appointed the entire horse to the Senate, whereas these days we only get the back half.

Carson
Guest
Carson

Artists express themselves in art: they are communicating content using the medium of art because that is the medium they know best able to communicate that content. Evangelicals who use art to communicate something about themselves — we are hip, we are current, we are like you, whatever — are focused on the medium, not the message. So it fails on two levels — the message is lost and medium is mangled, because both are misused. It is, as said here, a tragedy for the gospel message and, to boot, a tragedy for art. One cannot avoid “engaging with the… Read more »

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

Wonderful!

Didn’t C.S. Lewis say something about the way to Christian art isn’t having the bench of bishops writing Christian novels in their spare time? Or, as one of my beloved poets wrote, “If thou indeed derive thy light from heaven/Shine, poet, in thy place and be content.”

Johnny Simmons
Member

As much as I snark at some of the things I see playing music in Evango-world, I always say they got NOTHIN’ on liberal mainliners. Papier mache heads, bad drum circles, always with the streamers, and musical blackface.

Jane
Member

Fantastic point. Don’t forget the goofy vestments for the more liturgical side of liberalism. Some guy actually has a blog devoted to them (with the recent addition of bad high church architecture.)

http://badvestments.blogspot.com/

Ministry Addict
Member

I endorse this message… but not that “Message.”

Jill Smith
Member
Jill Smith

He never met a cliché he didn’t like. On a purely literal level, it’s hard to think of a worse indictment!

I hope he keeps his hands off Shakespeare and Milton or I am afraid I will feel compelled to do something about it.

MeMe
Guest

Something I wanted to mention about Eugene Peterson’s retraction or non retraction, he said he “respects” Christian views and “the historical” view of the bible. That’s a phrasing people use when they mean they totally respect your right to an opinion but they disagree.

“Historical view of the bible,” is another tell too. I’ve been asked that a few times. Historical means versus the new and improved modern version, which is almost always code for not perceiving homosexuality as a sin like the bible has historically done.

Steve H
Guest
Steve H

Perhaps I’ve slidden, but over time I’ve come to the conclusion that art is any communication medium that communicates beyond what language can. Bad art is just that then, something which communicates less than language. If the Message uses trite language in place of Hebrew poetry, I guess that is a miss. But the soup cans of Warhol are not this.

Tim
Guest
Tim

Not “scholar,” but “intellectual.” And maybe the reason you don’t/can’t remember who said it is Bob Jones was the source. Intellectuals don’t quote Bob Jones. Love you, bro.