When an Artist Becomes a Church Leader…

Lesson Materials

Questions for Reflection


1) Check out these pieces of art (all should be available on the internet)


    1. The Incredulity of St Thomas by Caravaggio (painting)
    2. Romans 10:9 by the Mountain Goats (song)
    3. A Good man is hard to find by Flannery O Connor (short story)


Which of these pieces of art would you regard as secular? Which of them would be sacred? Why? (You may want to google the artists involved)


2) Is there any divide between the secular and the sacred?


    1. How do you understand biblical ideas like ‘clean’ and ‘unclean’ or ‘the world’ and ‘the church’?
    2. How do you think concepts like this relate to our experience as Christians in church communities or even to the Christian subculture?


Scriptures to consider: Psalm 24:1, Jeremiah 29:7, 1 Peter 2:12, John 17:15-16


3) Does art need to have a purpose?


    1. What are the dangers in under emphasising a purpose in all of the choices we make?
    2. What are the dangers in over emphasising this question, regarding art or other activities in our lives?


Scriptures to consider: 1 Cor 9:24-27, Rom 13:8-10


4) Should we view art as a tool to change culture?


    1. Are we called as Christians to shape culture? What would be the biblical arguments for and against this position?
    2. How might a desire to shape culture affect an artist’s work, positively and negatively?


Scriptures to consider: Genesis 1:26-28 (the cultural mandate), the examples of Joseph, Esther and Daniel)


To kick things off, Jonny tells his story. As a church leader and an artist, he has approached several questions in his own life and in this video, he introduces three of them.