The Imagination of God: Art, Creativity and Truth in the Bible by Brian GodawaThe Imagination of God: Art, Creativity and Truth in the Bible by Brian Godawa

The Imagination of God: Art, Creativity and Truth in the Bible

byBrian Godawa

Paperback | July 1, 2016

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Want to Know God More? Use Your Imagination

NOTE: This book was previously released with the title, Word Pictures: Knowing God Through Story and Imagination.

Artist and screenwriter Brian Godawa used to revel in his ability to argue the truth of the gospel, often crushing his opponents in the process. In time, however, he began to realize that winning an argument about the logic of Christianity did not equal persuading people to follow Jesus. What was missing?

Through prayer and searching the Scriptures, Godawa realized that while God cares deeply for rationality, propositional truths were not the only tools he used to reach people with his truth. In fact, Godawa discovered that story, visual images, and other kinds of art were central to God's communication style because they could go places reason could never go: into the imagination and the heart.

The Bible is a Work of Art

In his refreshing and challenging book, Godawa helps you break free from the spiritual suffocation of heady faith. Without negating the importance of reason and doctrine, Godawa challenges you to move from understanding the Bible “literally” to “literarily” by exploring the poetry, parables and visual images found in God's Word. Weaving historical insight, pop culture and personal narrative throughout, Godawa reveals the importance God places on imagination and creativity in the Scriptures, and provides a biblical foundation for Christians to pursue imagination, beauty, wonder and mystery in their faith.

For any Christian who wants to learn how to communicate and defend the Gospel in a postmodern context, this book will help you find a path between the two extremes of intellectualized faith and anti-intellectual faith by recovering a biblical balance between intellect and imagination.

Endorsements

“Brian Godawa is that rare breed—a philosopher/artist—who opens our eyes to the aesthetic dimension of spirituality. Cogently argued and fun to read, Godawa shows convincingly that God interacts with us as whole persons, not only through didactic teaching but also through metaphor, symbol, and sacrament.”

– Nancy R. Pearcey, Author, Total Truth: Liberating Christianity from its Cultural Captivity, and Saving Leonardo: A Call to Resist the Secular Assault on Mind, Morals, and Meaning

“Brian Godawa's book is an exploration of the literary nature of the Bible. It is a spirited and balanced defense of the imagination as a potential conveyer of truth. There is a lot of good literary theory in the book, as well as an autobiographical story line. Pervading all this wealth is a sense of the author's energetic mind. The thoroughness of research makes the book a triumph of scholarship as well.”

– Leland Ryken, Clyde S. Kilby Professor of English, Wheaton College, and editor of The Christian Imagination: The Practice of Faith in Literature and Writing

 “Godawa is one of the best thinkers on Christianity, art and culture writing today. His latest work, [The Imagination of God], encourages a much more holistic viewing of movies and TV, which in turn leads to a more complete understanding of the Word of God. His work will make you want to first reach for your Bible and then view (or, even better, make) art that engages the culture and advances the kingdom of God. He has also convinced me that I am a 'literarialist.' Read this book and you'll probably become one too.”

– Dean Batali, TV writer, That '70s Show and Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Brian Godawa is the screenwriter for the award-winning feature film, To End All Wars, starring Kiefer Sutherland, and Alleged, starring Brian Dennehy as Clarence Darrow and Fred Thompson as William Jennings Bryan. Previously Brian adapted to film the best-selling supernatural thriller novel The Visitation by author Frank Peretti for Ra...
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Title:The Imagination of God: Art, Creativity and Truth in the BibleFormat:PaperbackDimensions:210 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.44 inPublished:July 1, 2016Publisher:Embedded PicturesLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1942858213

ISBN - 13:9781942858218

Reviews

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vi1 Confessions of a Modern 12 Literal Versus Literary 133 Word Versus Image 374 Iconoclasm 695 Incarnation 816 Subversion 977 Cultural Captivity 1198 What Art Would Jesus Do? 147Afterword: In Good Company 161Appendix: Answering Objections 167About the Author 184Get More out of Your Imagination 185

Editorial Reviews

"Brian Godawa is that rare breed-a philosopher/artist-who opens our eyes to the aesthetic dimension of spirituality. Cogently argued and fun to read, Godawa shows convincingly that God interacts with us as whole persons, not only through didactic teaching but also through metaphor, symbol, and sacrament." - Nancy R. Pearcey, Author, Total Truth: Liberating Christianity from its Cultural Captivity, and Saving Leonardo: A Call to Resist the Secular Assault on Mind, Morals, and Meaning"Brian Godawa's book is an exploration of the literary nature of the Bible. It is a spirited and balanced defense of the imagination as a potential conveyer of truth. There is a lot of good literary theory in the book, as well as an autobiographical story line. Pervading all this wealth is a sense of the author's energetic mind. The thoroughness of research makes the book a triumph of scholarship as well." - Leland Ryken, Clyde S. Kilby Professor of English, Wheaton College, and editor of The Christian Imagination: The Practice of Faith in Literature and Writing "Godawa is one of the best thinkers on Christianity, art and culture writing today. His latest work, [The Imagination of God], encourages a much more holistic viewing of movies and TV, which in turn leads to a more complete understanding of the Word of God. His work will make you want to first reach for your Bible and then view (or, even better, make) art that engages the culture and advances the kingdom of God. He has also convinced me that I am a 'literarialist.' Read this book and you'll probably become one too." - Dean Batali, TV writer, That '70s Show and Buffy the Vampire Slayer"Brian Godawa is that rare combination of industry professional and serious intellectual who is respected by the academic community and the media industry as well. When Brian speaks, I make notes, because what he thinks matters. [The Imagination of God] is exactly what the culture needs to hear right now. We've moved from a text-based culture to a visually based culture, and Brian's book is the key to making that transition. It's changed my thinking about understanding the Bible in a postmodern era." - Phil Cooke, president and creative director, Cooke Pictures, Santa Monica, California"A timely corrective to those of us who would reduce faith to words and arguments, given by an author who uses words and arguments so well. In [The Imagination of God] Brian Godawa manages to be contemporary without being trendy, faithful to tradition without being hidebound. It should be read by anyone concerned for the well-being of biblical truth in twenty-first-century popular culture." - Steve Turner, author of Imagine: A Vision for Christians in the Arts"This book deserves, and will delight, a wide readership. Part autobiography, part biblical studies, part apologetics, part aesthetics, part historical theology, only a 'Renaissance man' like artist-intellectual-communicator Brian Godawa could have brought together 'word' and 'image' with such serene, soaring mastery. I'll be requiring it in my preaching courses." - Leonard Sweet, author of Out of the Question... Into the Mystery"This is must reading for anyone interested in the huge question of the use of words and the legitimacy of images for theological and apologetic discourse. Brian Godawa has left no stone unturned. Moving insightfully through the Bible, Luther, Calvin, Tolkien, Lewis and, of course, films, Godawa lays to rest the many fears about images and imagination. More than that, he encourages Christians to get involved in the media, with a view to transforming them rather than hiding behind the safe wall of 'Christian art.'" - William Edgar, professor of apologetics, Westminster Theological Seminary, Philadelphia