Secular music that glorifies God

(Lou Hablas) #45

Good morning, @Jennifer_Wilkinson, - what a wonderful discussion and so many great insights being offered. Jennifer, thank you for your thoughtful reply to my question. @tfloraditch made a great point here:

God loves both audiences the same and died for all of them. To elevate one style above the other is more a matter of changing cultural values, not an eternal truth. When God wanted to speak to Balaam He used an ass, and it still filled Balaam’s spirit with the glory of God as much as any music.

Excellent point and one I’ll be pondering as I further ponder this topic. Jennifer and all who’ve joined in this conversation, thank you for making it so rich!

(Jennifer Wilkinson) #46

@tfloraditch, I feel awful that it has taken me a month to reply to your thoughtful post, and I fear I can’t give it a proper reply even now, but I keep pondering it. I especially appreciated the following paragraph:

First, I like the fact that you pointed out the weakness that I knew was in my original argument. When I compared Shakespeare to pop fiction, I had no evidence that Shakespeare’s genre was better. He was simply a better writer.

I’m curious about your thoughts on Jackson Pollock. I was vaguely familiar with his work, so I looked up his bio at This site indicates he was influenced by Surrealism, which “attempts to express the workings of the subconscious by fantastic imagery and incongruous juxtaposition of subject matter.” The site also says that Jackson Pollock was like other Abstract Expressionists, “anxiously aware of human irrationality and vulnerability.”

Were certain abstract art forms created to communicate the ideas, values, or emotions of worldviews focused on the subconscious and/or irrationality of man? Are these art forms well suited to expressing the Christian worldview?

(Timothy Loraditch) #47

@Jennifer_Wilkinson Please don’t feel badly about not getting back quickly. There was no due date. I don’t live on the internet. None of us should be hanging on just waiting the next response to our post. There are paintings to paint, minuets to practice, and mountains to climb. Don’t miss it!

Please keep in mind that any claim of one artist being greater than another is subjective. Some people think J.K Rowling is a better writer than Shakespeare. That is all a part of who we are, but studying Shakespeare will give you a better foundation in writing than Rowling will. However; that is an aspect of language and culture that may change.

Jackson Pollock is perhaps my favorite Abstract Expressionist painter, but keep in mind I don’t love the abstract expressionists. These painters got their start during the depression as New York artists in the WPA FAP. The government paid them to paint and expected nothing in return. There were no stipulation on what they did. No one had to like it and it did not have to sell. The artists got paid anyway. They produced a lot work that some say was sold off by the pound at second hand shops.

The important thing to know about Pollack’s work is it is not random. He was not just dripping paint with no artistic expression. I see his paintings as landscapes. He is connecting with patterns he saw in nature and expressed them in a very deliberate intension using action painting. Much of the attraction to these artists was the newness of them. They were different than anything before.

This is an aspect of culture. We are always looking for something new. Paul saw this in the Greeks Acts 17:21 (Now all the Athenians and the strangers visiting there used to spend their time in nothing other than telling or hearing something new.) Some aspects of our culture doesn’t hold up well over time. Old episodes of Leave it to Beaver or “Gilligan’s Island” are just not that popular any more. However; they still have Shakespeare in the park in NYC and it is always sold out.

Abstract Expressionism is what was new in the 30’s and 40’s. Art has moved on and not really in a good way. After a while it is had to do something new.

There are some Christian artists who are abstractionists. You can find some at There are also many other organizations. That is just the first I could think of.

(Dan) #48

On a completely different perspective and awareness, my Men’s Bible Study group brought up a song by the group, The Who. Read the lyrics for Won’t be Fooled Again. I doubt Peter Townsend was thinking about the Gospel and being saved

(Jennifer Wilkinson) #49

Thanks, Timothy! Beware, if you keep giving me such good information, you’ll become my go-to person for visual arts. My original arts education was very lopsided toward music, but I’ve been trying to broaden out. I can’t wait to learn more about Jackson Pollock. I had no idea his work was linked to patterns in nature.