Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Ashland St. Baptist Church Mural
Their church, like many others, including my own, do not have a baptistry. So, this scene was painted as a backdrop to fill in a would-be empty space. It's my own depiction of the Good Shepherd going after the lost sheep. The idea was taken from a previous painting of mine which can be seen here.
Ashland Street Baptist Church is the home of much Christian heritage in the Archdale area. Many souls have been saved and called into the ministry through the faithfulness of this local assembly. The present pastor is Rev. Barney Law and the minister of music is my good friend Randy Beck, who gave me this commission. Thanks Randy! If you're ever in the area during service time, stop in to see the mural, but most importantly to hear a gospel message.
Let me also address the most frequently asked question by viewers: "How did that sheep get on that ledge?" Well, the painting is representational of the believer before his/her conversion. I tell people the sheep was "born there" or "Adam put him there". I usually get some strange looks by my response, so allow me to explain...
All are born in sin and like David, we were shapen in iniquity (Ps. 51:5). We were all by nature children of wrath (Eph. 2:3) and because of Adam's sin, we too, were plunged into condemnation (Rom. 5:18). Those who refuse to believe Jesus are condemned ALREADY (John 3:18) and the wrath of God ABIDETH on him (John 3:36). Our sins do not make us sinners, we sin because we're sinners. The outward sinful actions are products of a bad heart (Mat. 15:18-19). We're not good men who do wrong...no, we're wicked depraved sinners who sometimes do good.
This description of man's plight will evoke one of two responses: The first being, "That's not fair!" followed by many attempts to justify their sinful deeds and why they commit them. This person is prideful and and as long as he stays in that prideful condition, will not be a recipient of God's saving grace. God gives grace to the humble but resists the proud (James 4:6).
The second response is truly an act of God's gracious drawing power. This person is humiliated by their sin and realizing they can offer nothing to merit God's grace, they place themselves at the mercy of the only Savior of the world. Turning from their sin, they fully trust Jesus Christ for who He is and His work on the cross, thus changing their position as condemned sinner to being declared righteous. Visit my Bread of Life article to see what saving faith looks like.
The Son of Man came to seek and to save that which was lost...are you still trying to earn God's favor and find your own way, or are you lost?