Ligon Duncan on the Non-Negotiables of the Gospel

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  • Friday, February 22, 2008

    Art and Faith

    Yet the exhibition’s overarching theme, the ability to switch fluidly from the scale of the atom to the scale of entire cities, may sound a death knell for the tired ideological divides of the last century, between modernity and history, technology and man, individual and collective. It should be required viewing for anyone who believes that our civilization is heading back toward the Dark Ages.

    The above quote is from an article in the NY Times about "Design and the Elastic Mind,” which is described as "an exhilarating new show opening on Sunday at the Museum of Modern Art." The quote communicates this year's theme which is different but still one in a line of themes which have characterized the art show over the years.

    As students of worldviews recognize, art often reflects the thinking, mindset, apsirations, hopes and even struggles of a particular age. It's not surprising that science and technology plays a predominant role in this year's show. Nor is it surprising that phrases like "hold the key to paradise" and "shaped by an unwavering faith in the transformative powers of technology" appear in this article.

    However, the article is telling of the future... when it in seeking to set apart this years theme of science and technology not only distinguishes it from themes of the past, but reveals it as one in a line of changing themes and in a line that is clearly subject to more change.

    There's no doubt that with scientific advancements we will continue (as people have been in the past) to be facinated and impressed with the changes; however the question of whether man's hope and supreme pleasure lies in it will certainly not remain in the place where it may be found today (and in this year's art show). In fact, I saw a man on TV the other day who stated there's even a new form of interest and entertainment (agri-tainment, agri-tourism) where some are moving in the opposite direction and looking back to the simple things of nature and fellowship for fun.

    Hope in science and technology... this too shall pass (as have the other themes)... as the only real hope and satisfaction is found in God.

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