The Peaceable Kingdom

For much of history, religion and art were inseparable. The scenes worthy of depicting and contemplating were the stories and matters of faith.

When an artist takes the time to consider the details of a scene and then express it, he or she engages in an experience that connects the artist with the scene in a deep and lasting way. The same is possible for those who take time to contemplate the artwork.

Among the most painted scenes from the Bible is often referred to as "The Peaceable Kingdom." It's an idyllic depiction of a world we don't yet know and is an expression of Isaiah 11:6-11. We'll read it, as well as the passage with which it is always coupled (11:1-5) in the sanctuary this Sunday.

The passage as a whole (Isaiah 11:1-11) could well be painted as a diptych (a two-paneled artwork) showing the tension between the first scene in the passage (11:1-5) and the second (11:6-10). We'll consider the tension between the real worlds Isaiah describes together.

In The Well, the conversation will focus on hope, certainly an appropriate Advent theme. Paul gives expression to the hope we have in Christ in Romans 15:4-13. Consider Paul's prayer for you as you enter the weekend and prepare for worship Sunday:

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13).

Hoping I'll see you Sunday,