I have often pondered something related to art and the way we Christians view it that may well bother some reading this.
I could be (and often am) wrong, so please bear with me and consider my concerns.
We know from scripture and personal experience that God is beautiful and that Jesus “does all things well”. Father, Son and Spirit, the Triune God we believe and follow -is- gloriously beautiful.
We know that the world is a fallen world, that there is brokenness, sin (missing the mark) everywhere. We also recognize people, flora and fauna of exquisite beauty.
Do we also believe that all things which we cannot judge (at least on the surface) as beautiful are not of God? In harsh terms, if it, or he or she is deemed less than beautiful, outright “ugly”, “mal-formed”, “abnormal”, what do we do with that?
Consider Isaiah’s comment in this light: “For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot, And like a root out of parched ground; He has no stately form or majesty That we should look upon Him, Nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him.” -Isa. 53.2
We love the beautiful. Do we discard the non-beautiful as satanic, godforsaken, “of the flesh” and unworthy of value?
I am convinced some Christians unwittingly fall into such judgments with regard to both artwork and worse, human beings.
What is ugly? Some of our conclusions likely have to do with personal, individual taste and nothing more. Is it defined by the majority, the minority, a matter of individual consideration?
Regarding people -or- art: what does GOD think about her, him, it? ANY “value”, any “redeeming value” here? Any at all? If not for you or me, for others? What does God Himself say about it? I’m not asking about this or that church’s opinion nor a classic, often rather critical individual’s opinion (and much judgment person vs. person is nothing more than opinion) but what is GOD’S OWN ASSESSMENT of the work or the person? Back to the Word of God- PLEASE!
This is one very foundational task involved in how we determine this or they are “beautiful” therefore acceptable or “ugly” and as such, worth or not worth much. It’s not merely for us to make that judgment… is it?
Perhaps worth considering with regard to both art -and certainly so regarding human beings whom The Artist created.
His, yours, -Glenn