Must Christian Art Be Evangelistic?

Over at the Gospel Coalition, Alex Medina asks in the title of his post Must Art Be Evangelistic to Be Christian? Since the question is really about art made by Christians, let me re-phrase the question.

Must Christian art be evangelistic? Or, a fuller version of the question from a Facebook friend, “Does a Christian who does music have to talk about Christianity or anything about the gospel in their music?”

I emphasized the words “must” and “have to” above to set-up my brief answer. No, a Christian artist does not “have to” only produce evangelistic art. Evangelistic art is not a “must.” However, this simple closed-ended question warrants more than a simple “no” answer. A Christian artist should be driven by a biblical worldview; therefore, everything they produce should be for God’s glory (1 Cor. 10:31). While Christianity or Christ’s gospel may not be explicit, it should be implicit. Nothing contrary to a Christian worldview should be promoted by Christian artists. Instead, they are to (as are all Christians in their lives) recognize and do what is pleasing to God (Eph. 5:10) not participating in darkness, but exposing it (Eph. 5:11). And ultimately rejecting evil (1 Thess. 5:22).

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tagged as , , , in apologetics,Christianity,Culture,ethics,Evangelism,faith,Gospel,integrity,morality,theology

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 rtrube54 March 14, 2014 at 3:05 pm

This is an interesting question. One of the things I would observe is that much artistic expression that talks openly about Christian faith is not in fact evangelistic because those who don’t yet believe stay away from it or never see or hear it–it is only preaching to the converted. Yet the purveyors of such “art” may think of it as such. I actually think art done to God’s glory, with whatever excellence of talent and insight God gives, art that seeks to give a truthful rendering of some aspect of reality does in fact “witness” to Christ, even though that may not be the conscious intent of the artist.


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