Francis Shaeffer places Christ Lordship over the whole man as his foundation for looking at the arts. He is saying two things: Christ is Lord over ALL of Reality; and that Christ is Lord over every part of man–body, soul, imagination, his symbolic functions etc.. His Lordship starts with us, and then extends out through us into culture, or better yet onto cities and naitons, and our planet.
Full redemption of the whole person includes the full funtioning of the imagination or symbol maker of man; as this is healed, man is able to partner with Christ in His Perception, creating healed images of Reality; this becomes part of partnering with Christ in His Restoration! And we then get to participate in God’s healing of His Own symbolic expression in creating the earth and humanity!
Trying to just be relevant to culture or the world is not enough. We want to be restorers of our planet with Him! If relevancy is your foundational stone, you are going to stay lateral; but if Christ Lordship over the WHOLE of man including his image maker or symbolic function; and then through this healing, allowing us to partner with HIM in healing the symbolic level or imagination of the planet, there you have something deeper to start from.
God made the whole man; and the whole man is under redemption. Then He gave man dominion or lordship through HIM, the new Adam!–and this Lordship extends into 1)the arts or creative parts of ourselves 2) to the arts or creative realm in culture or cities or nations. We have a responsibility as those “in Him” to carry His Imagination into our culture, and be restorers of its imagination. As we allow Him to heal our own creativity, we are then able to enter in and be healers in our culture’s imagination! How thrilling, and what a great context and purpose for the arts! For we then can start to be projectors of heaven’s images onto earth.
Heaven’s images of our cities, nations and even our entire planet are meant to be in His likeness! “For we are His workmanship (his art, his poems) created in Christ Jesus..” (Ephesian 2:10) God made earth and humanity to express Himself. In this sense, the entire creation is just that–a creation, a piece of art made to express the Artist, who is God, the Creator! That is the ultimate context for our own creativity!
We were given dominion or rulership over the earth; we are then, once in HIM, asked to partner with Him in ruling the symbolic dimension, as well as the other parts of cities, nations and the whole earth–this is part of knowing Christ in His Rulership or dominion of the earth. His Lordship in the arts, means HIS IMAGES being projected onto cities and places and people–not the enemy’s. For too long the enemy has projected his images onto cities and people, Jesus will have HIS images placed on them, for we were made “in His Image” and meant to be signs or symbols pointing towards God! As we, like David, become “living portents or symbols, we can also start to heal the imagnination of our cites, our nations, and of our planet!