Statements in Stone

Scripture tells us that we need to speak to our generation with clarity. One of the mistakes that we make is that of reducing faithfulness in this to words alone. There are other ways of speaking, and we need to use them all.

Architecture speaks. It is not possible for human beings to live in architectural silence. We are always speaking. If an alien with anthropological interests were to come and walk through our cities, he would be able tell—without speaking to anyone—what was important to us. He would see business in the skyscrapers. He would see commerce in the great shopping malls. He would see entertainment in the stadiums. Where would he see the importance to us of the worship of the Most High God? We are always speaking . . . but what are we saying?

In other eras, and in some other locations, it is quite different. Churches were built first, and they were built centrally. They made a statement with their placement, and with their height, and with their architectural attitude.

Of course, it should go without saying—although it is safe to keep saying it—that the attitude should be that God is great, and is worthy of this statement, not that we are great for worshiping Him in such an admirable fashion. Truly exalted Christian architecture must be humble.

We say that such a task is hard, and we are very aware of all the obstacles. Yes, there are many obstacles. But when we have the same kind of zeal for the glory of our Father in Heaven as the worldings have for the glory of Mammon, then perhaps we will do something worthwhile. Building their skyscrapers, and their malls, and their stadiums . . . was that easy for them? Or are they more dedicated to the worship of false gods than we are in the worship of the true?

So let the stones cry out.

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Sean Patrick Kelly
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Sean Patrick Kelly

Though I support the meeting of Christians in homes and modest buildings (the small church I belong to met in houses, then a high school multi-purpose room for several years), there is something marvelous about the churches and cathedrals left to us from saints of old. Those beautiful buildings make such a declaration of bygone Christians’ reverence for Christ, and how esteemed was the gathering of the Body to hear the Word and worship the Living God. It seems to reveal an appreciation for aesthetic beauty that has nearly disappeared from evangelical circles (at least the ones to which I… Read more »

Sean Patrick Kelly
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Sean Patrick Kelly

Excuse me, God can BE…and so it goes.

Sean Patrick Kelly
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Sean Patrick Kelly

I am a Southern California boy, where everything has been developed in the last hundred years, so those few opportunities I have to visit Midwestern, North Eastern, Southern, or Western European cities where there are much older developments, those times are spent gaping at old churches and such. Look at artists’ renderings of those cities from the sixteenth, seventeenth, and eighteenth centuries, and be amazed at the number of steeples! I’ll take the skyline from those old drawings over any modern city.

David Baker
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David Baker

We are a little church plant in Indianapolis

David Baker
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David Baker

My message got truncated. The rest was that we plan to improve our little cement block rental with an eye toward the details. I think even plain spaces can be improved