Unless you?re one of Darwin?s droogies, and you believe that we evolved from the goo, to the zoo, to you, then you?re a creationist, and you believe that God created you and the world you live in. The believer in the biblical account of creation also believes that he is an image-bearer of his Creator, that he, too, has creative juices coursing through his veins. Thus, being veritable Mini-Me?s of Jehovah, we should be brimming over with creative, artistic life.
Since the creature is to mirror the Creator, you would expect creativity to be cranking out of most churches?right? But that ain?t the way it is. Let?s face it: the 21st-century Church has a view of the arts that is lower than a flea hitching a ride on the underbelly of a 117-lb. Dachshund. The Church?s view of art as unspiritual, or even idolatrous, has created an aversion and an antagonism to art which has effectively alienated us from the world that God has made and the society he wants us to reach.
Traditionally, when the Church has been at the top of its game?not burning witches or applying thumbscrews to petty thieves?we?ve had a high view of the pen, the paint brush, the piano and the chisel. Art itself needed no rationalization, and for 500 years, brilliant art emerged from the Church. Orthodox, biblically-based, non-wacky clergy and laity took pleasure in living, the arts, culture, their own talents and the abilities of those around them. They got the message that beauty and culture come from God, and that beauty and culture are good, and they didn?t need a 968-word column, written by a so-so writer, to defend it.
Think about it. God went into orbit, spinning some pretty nifty work out in the Star Wars region. His imagination not exhausted, God created millions of species, and all kinds of people with a bunch of funky talents. As if the mind-bending intricacies of all that weren?t enough, there are also tens of thousands of peculiar creatures like the angels and demons, presently running around in an unseen realm.
And then we come to the detail of His work; God?s eye for design makes Rembrandt?s efforts look like stuff turned out by a boorish Spartan metalworker. Yes, from a creative standpoint, God is more prolific and imaginative than Picasso at his easel, whipped up on a double espresso, with his mistresses out of town.