A Language to Bring People Back Home

As regular readers know, I've been doing a lot of thinking about Christianity and art. Just this month my paper Death, Art and the Fall: A Terror Management Perspective on Christian Aesthetic Judgments appeared in the Journal of Psychology and Christianity. Some of that paper is abstracted in my recent post The Thomas Kinkade Effect.

So I was excited to find out about the project by Makoto Fujimura (h/t Ben Myers and Alan Jacobs) to illuminate the four gospels in commemoration of the 400th Anniversary of the King James Bible. If you are interested in the interface of Christianity and art, go to Fujimura's website and watch the video about the project. During the video Fujimura offers some of the best theology I've heard in quite a long time:

Art is always transgressive. What I always say is, we need to transgress in love. We, today, have a language that celebrates waywardness. But we do not have a language, a cultural language, to bring people back home.
A PDF of the bible (the first couple of chapters of Matthew) can be found here. Check it out. It's beautiful. The bible can be purchased from the publisher here and from Amazon here.

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4 thoughts on “A Language to Bring People Back Home”

  1. Are you familiar with the Brehm center at Fuller Theological Seminary. The Brehm Center is an innovative space for the creative integration of worship, theology, & arts in culture.



  2. To transgress the law of hate is to love and to transgress the law of love is to love, all by adding an 'ive'. Kind of convolutes the antonym but I see it.

  3. I'm not sure I'm following you. To clarify, something is "transgressive" if it violates a set of norms, usually norms regulating what is considered to be appropriate conduct. Jesus' ministry was a series of acts of love. And yet, his love was experienced as transgressive. Jesus' love was socially illicit. It violated social norms. And it still violates social norms. In the end, due to his transgressive love, Jesus was killed.

    In short, love--true love--is always going to "go against the grain" of the world and, thus, be experienced as transgressive, a stumbling block, a scandal, an affront.

  4. Well so I did. I misread transgress in love but I misread it as transgressive love because Fujimura mentioned art as always transgressive and there are genres called "Transgressive Art, Fiction, etc". Right or wrong, artists and authors transgress societies laws-- but as far as love is concerned, if it is seen as illicit by society then society is a ass; "Against such things there is no law." (Gal. 5) To use "transgress" in this context lends credence to law that in truth doesn't exist.

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