No Religious Images at all?


#1

Ok, this weekend I went to a long time family friend’s wedding. They are Church of Christ (the one down here in the South, affiliated with David Lipscomb U and Freed Hardeman U).
Anyway, I noticed something very odd in the church…there are no religious images of any kind! No crosses, no pictures of Jesus, nothing religious except a Bible in the pew!!

This struck me as really really odd since most Protestant churches usually have at least a cross on the wall. I even asked my Dad (who is a Methodist minister) why they didn’t have any. He didn’t know either so he asked some of his teachers at school (he’s also a principal) who are Church of Christ and they said they had actually never thought of it before.

I also attend their school,Freed Hardeman, while I’m getting my Masters (I didn’t want to but its the only option available to me right now) and I know that they don’t have crosses or pictures of Jesus in the school, either.

Do any of you know why they don’t have anything religious in their sanctuaries or in other buildings that they are affiliated with/own?


#2

Some protestants are just really iconoclastic (religious imagery is bad) and gnostic (all matter is bad, God can only be spiritualized–any physical worship is bad).


#3

I wonder how these people view crosses being used to decorate Bible covers…?:o


#4

While I can’t answer to the Church of Christ, you will find in most Friend’s Meetings no images…or crosses either. Our meeting houses are very plain. We are not gnostic or “iconoclastic” in any way…it is our choice of worship…we seek to do away with all outward forms so the Eternal may be more fully manifested in our worship experience. Many Friends wear jewelery such as crosses or the “ichthus”…but in our metting houses we try to have nothing detract from the Reality of worship…the Real Presence of Christ among us.


#5

Some Protestants are very against any iconography/religious imagery, they see it as inviting idolatry. I don’t know if that’s the issue with that church, but that’s what I’ve been told by other Protestants.


#6

Wanting to avoid idol worship is respectable, but some people go too far.


#7

Some Protestants do see such things as “idolotry”…for others it is simply an aesthetic choice on how they choose to worship…there’s nothing sinister about it…simply a choice.


#8

Thanks for all your answers! I just thought that was a little strange to me!


#9

Amen to that, my church does not have a cross at the alter…but since even without a cross or what so ever, God is omnipresent!!!


#10

The iconoclasm certainly cuts them off from historic Christianity.

CDL


#11

And in some cases from the very Incarnation. If they only thought it through they’d have to reject Jesus as the image of God because he was flesh and blood, not just a spirit. This idea was an early heresy that images, such as statues and pictures, were used to combat, and here we are again with the same old battle. Some things really never change. :shrug:


#12

Publisher,can you please tell me what an Ichthus is?:confused:


#13

An Ichthus is what we 'round my town call the ‘Jesus Fish’:

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#14

I wholeheartedly agree! Even the earliest Christian symbols found on caves and catacombs showed the symbol of the fish or a cross as early testimony that early Christianity placed a special importance on the symbols of this new religion.


#15

:o Thank You Publisher,

I have seen this word before in reference to the Christian Fish Symbol, but had a brain “meltdown” and plumb forgot.:rolleyes:


#16

I was in a Catholic church a while back that didn’t have a Crucifix in it either…they had a kind of deformed “t” looking thing on a stick in the back, with something that might have been a representation of Jesus on it…it was all quite disturbing, and I then realized just how messed up the American Catholics have been since Vatican II. You go to old(er) Catholic churches here in America, and they look, well, like Catholic churches. Go to something built in the 70’s until relatively recently, and they look like, well, public libraries with pews instead of desks…


#17

I’m a convert to Catholicism from the Churches of Christ (although my particular branch would have classed Harding and Freed Hardeman as liberal apostates who were hell-bound).

Part of the problem is that the CoC has no centralized “doctrine.” There’s no official prohibition against church art. My particular congregation relied on the “Thou shalt make no graven images…” commandment. As there wasn’t a coordinating “thou shall” anywhere in the New Testament, the images of any form ban stood. The same reasoning is behind the refusal to use instrumental music during worship–God doesn’t specifically tell us to do it, se we’d better not. Wouldn’t want to upset God (who they view as some sort of evil Santa) and wind up in hell.

We weren’t even allowed to wear a cross necklace. One preacher once said “If Jesus were killed with an electric chair or a guillotine, would you wear that around your neck as jewelry?”

I have to admit, I take much joy in putting on my Celtic cross given to me by my sponsor every single morning :slight_smile:


#18

It means: Jesus Christ, Son of God, Savior


#19

Thank you!..I was trying to find an image.


#20

I can’t speak for “Protestants” but I’ve been raised Protestant and have no problems with religious imagery. Very few Protestant denominations go to the extreme- the one I go to has quite a few images of Christ(well, paintings-especially for children. I have a portrait of Jesus and Mary up in my apartment.:slight_smile:


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