The original reason I started blogging more than a year ago was my desire to push myself to learn then share with others what I’d learned. Thanks to the sophistication of modern communication, you don’t need a university to teach you everything out of highschool. There are innumerable sources for knowledge and I was poised to tap them and find truth.
Specifically, I wanted to learn about the arts from a Biblical worldview. I wanted to know what God thinks about morality in relation to movies, music, plays, etc. As I began to explore these issues, I quickly realized that I needed to figure out what God would define as art. This was/is no easy task. For the most part, the Bible doesn’t address the arts directly. There are plenty of references to arts in general throughout the Old and New Testaments, but few that deal with it specifically.
Many Christians are duped (I believe) at this point in study to figure that God must not have an opinion about the arts, or if He did, He would’ve made it more clear as He did other issues in the scriptures. Well, that’s not the best reasoning in the world. It’s deductive reasoning like this that leads to other seriously mistaken beliefs (that’s a subject for a different post).
After studying the arts for more than a decade, I’m still convinced that God does have an opinion (a respective understanding of what is morally right and wrong in the arts) and He has no intention to keep it from us. Still, I’m faced with the difficulty of defining absolutes scripturally in relation to the infinite ethical dilemmas the arts bring about. For instance, it is clear from a Christian worldview that not all music is morally productive. Does this mean that Christians should split hairs on the details and nuances of every given musical number and end with a stamp of approval or disapproval for each tune in their iTunes library? Some Christians think so. However, this level of legalism is also subject to human error. We can do our best to make the moral factors black and white, but at the end of any musical number, you’ll get so many interpretations from each and every individual in a test group that it’s hard to determine who’s human opinion and interpretation of the music is “true” to the music itself.
I continue to ponder these matters in great depth. It’s a goal of mine (by the end of my life) to have the most definitive and truthful insights I can surmise in my lifetime turned into a book to share with others. In the meantime, I continue to jot my thoughts down here to help myself sort through the details. Thanks for reading. Your comments are welcome.