Let's be honest—Bible art is trendy. Find a pretty landscape photo, slap a Psalm over it using a free font and presto, Christian culture will EAT THAT UP. When this is done by brands or individuals that are obviously just trying to make a buck, it actually doesn't bother me that much. I have no expectation that someone who doesn't follow Jesus would treat the Bible with the same reverence that someone who does would.
What really frustrates me (and what I'm specifically referring to for the rest of the post) are self-proclaimed "Christian" artists or brands that exploit the Bible by creating trite, low quality and dishonest art. The Bible has some really powerful, weird and beautiful things in it, but lazy art reduces it all to fluffy inspirational snippets.
It turns the Holy Bible into holy shit.
We need more biblical art that treats Scripture honestly and isn't afraid to express doubt and confusion at times. Art that tackles not only the shiny, happy Psalms, but also the difficult, violent and confusing passages as well as the powerful, confrontational pieces—all with honesty. Our art has the power to start real, honest conversations about the Bible. Why settle for likes and followers?
Artists (and I'm talking to myself here too), if you follow Jesus and create biblical art, I implore you to ask yourselves these questions on an ongoing basis:
- Am I creating biblical artwork for my own gain?
- Do I care more about likes than the actual art?
- Does this piece have any meaning to me at all?
- Does this art have any depth? Is it honest?
Those questions are very subjective and when it comes to your art, no one can answer them but you. Just make sure you ask them—and keep asking them.
We worship the ultimate Creator. He is fierce and honest and surprising. Strive to produce art that reflects that!