October 6, 2008 Ration

II Peter 1:15

“And I will make every effort so that after my departure you may be able at any time to recall these things.”

This is a great verse for artists to consider. It is the kind of verse that produced resolution IX of “An Artist’s Creed”:

“I Resolve: To labor in the arts in such a way as to lay up as much treasure in heaven as the Holy Spirit enables and my faculties allow.”

Artists, what are you working to burn into the memory of your observers? Anything? The recollection of you? The pleasures of futility? The glory of God in all things pleasurable?

Peter is diligent to remind the brothers and sisters that God’s “divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us to His own glory and excellence…” (v3). A hunger for the knowledge of God is what Peter wants to leave his audience with. And he writes about it so that after he dies, his writings can continue to work for him. How may of us will be counted as a fruit of Peter’s labor?

This causes me to pause and seriously consider what my artistic energies are spent on: that which lasts or that which passes. God lasts; the fame of man passes. The glory of God in man’s glory will last; the glory of man is passed off to Christ and then to the Father in the last day as every man’s knowledge is made perfect to see that he is a glorious work of God!

Artist, do not neglect your growth in the knowledge of God. Do not become comfortable, thinking that you understand God enough. You don’t. Nobody does! Grace and peace are multiplied to us through the knowledge of God (v2), and we are all in need of much more grace and peace in our lives. Peter says that through the knowledge of God we can escape from the corrupting sinful desires of the world’s mind (v4), thereby enjoying more grace and peace that God loves to give to those who fear Him.

The world’s mind in art is that art itself is the answer for obtaining grace and peace. Isn’t it strange, however, that by and large the art of the world poses more questions than it does answers; more searchings than findings; more “what do you see” titles than “here’s what I’ve tested and found true” titles. The art world seems to think that the answers are found in the aesthetics of the proposition. But the aesthetics are only as valuable as its proposition is reliable. True lasting peace comes with surety, not ambiguity. All markets and governments know this.

Be like Peter, artists, and make every effort to help your audience recall that it is God’s divine power that grants to us “all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us to His own glory and excellence…” And let your artistry work for you long after you have labored with it.

Jason Harms

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© 2008 The Gaius Project

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