1 Kings 6:35 He carved cherubim, palm trees and open flowers on them and overlaid them with gold hammered evenly over the carvings.
I love reading about the craftsmanship that occurred during the building of Solomon’s Temple. As an artist, I appreciate the descriptions of what was carved in order to decorate and set apart the temple as holy. In my mind’s eye, I try to picture what it would look like and sometimes I seek out other artist’s illustrations. However, I think it must have been must grander than I or anyone else can imagine.
Some people believe that artistic images are sinful and should never be allowed in churches. During the Reformation, many churches had their beautiful carvings, statues, and windows smashed to pieces and destroyed. If the destructive Protestant iconoclasts had ever reached Pisa, Florence, or Rome, we might never have known of the beautiful, artistic, and sculpted works of Da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Cellini. Thank goodness that it was the will of God to keep those sacrilegious vandals away from those masterworks!
We are all pieces of art, created, shaped, and sculpted by God. We are living testimonies of His masterworks. How we express or convey our faith displays who we faithfully are to the rest of the world. Our personal contribution to Christianity is carved by what we say and do. Sometimes we allow God to do the shaping; at other times, we take over and diminish part of what He has initially created.
Let’s use this day as a time of witness and faith. Let’s make a focused and worthwhile attempt of allowing God to shape our day, our decisions, and our faith. May we surrender ourselves to His spiritual influence over our hearts and minds. In other words, may we all become what God wants to make of us today.
Questions for personal reflection
When am I most aware of God’s influence and direction over my life? What can I do to freely give this day to Him?
Prayer: Lord Jesus, there are several paths and choices that we could take and make today. Guide us completely by Your will, so that our words, works, and ways may become effective and positive displays of Your influence in our lives, as well as Your mission for the world. In Your Holy Name, we pray. Amen.
John Stuart is the pastor of Erin Presbyterian Church in Knoxville, Tennessee. If you would like to comment or ask a question about today’s message, please send John an email to email@example.com.
Today’s image is one of John’s Christ images called “Redeemer Rabbi.” If you would like to view a larger version, please click the following link: Redeemer Rabbi.