Jesus Used Art And Story To Get His Message Out… So Should We

Written by Wes Walker on February 8, 2020

Facts can change minds, but stories change hearts. There is a reason that Hollywood and the Media fight so hard to control the public narrative. Because stories can change the world.

When Jesus met with people in the gospels, he wrapped up his ideas in stories.

He spoke of a prodigal son, a lost sheep, an unjust judge, a farmer sowing seed, a Good Samaritan. He did more than teach deep theological truths, he packaged them in a way that they could be digested and absorbed.

Those stories changed lives… and they continue to do so.

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The Old Testament does the same thing. The Passover Meal recounts the Exodus, their national story as a people. Abraham was surrounded by sand in the daytime and stars at night. God wrapped his promise about future blessing in images his natural senses could not HELP but see every day. And that shaped his thinking, helped steady his confidence.

One of the unfortunate consequences of the Reformation and Enlightenment periods of Western Civilization is the elevation of Truth and Science has come at the (unnecessary) expense of Art.

The Ancients saw Truth, Beauty, and Goodness as three legs of a stool. Any respectable citizen (or, by extension culture) would need to strike a proper balance between (in modern terminology) mind, heart, and morality.

In elevating information and ideas, (not necessarily capital-t Truth), cultural leaders of the past neglected the other two.

Since nature abhors a vacuum, art forms carrying OTHER messages and moralities have risen up in their place. Deconstructionist, anti-Western ideologies.

If the Church wants to win back the culture, it’s time to win back the hearts, not just the minds, of the public.

If Leftists have long understood the principle that when you change the culture, you change society… it’s time we met them where the fight really is.

That’s why we promote anything in art and culture that pushes back against those trends. And no, we don’t mean the schlocky Christian-ghetto tchotchkes. We’re talking about quality artwork. Quality music. Quality stories. Quality architecture.

After all, the very first people the Holy Spirit descended upon in scripture were the skilled artisans responsible for the building of the Tabernacle and the various tools associated with worship. Notice the emphasis on ability.

Then the Lord said to Moses, 2 “See, I have chosen Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, 3 and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills— 4 to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, 5 to cut and set stones, to work in wood, and to engage in all kinds of crafts. 6 Moreover, I have appointed Oholiab son of Ahisamak, of the tribe of Dan, to help him. Also I have given ability to all the skilled workers to make everything I have commanded you:
Exodus 31

That’s why independent filmmakers that put out quality work that embrace this attitude should be supported.

That’s why we’ve been cheer Kanye’s new project. He shares exactly this attitude.

That’s why we promote Doug Giles’s artwork.

That’s why we listened to, enjoyed, and told others about Andrew Klavan’s story ‘Another Kingdom‘, and Bill Whittle’s retelling of the Space Race in ‘What We Saw‘.

That’s why we liked that rumor about new Federal Buildings being built in the Neo-Classical style, rather than the butt-ugly modern style..

Because Truth, Beauty, and Goodness really are interconnected.

We can fight all day long in the political sphere, fighting over ideas and minds. But we must not neglect the power of stories, of images and imagination to sink deeply into our hearts and ideas.

 

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