Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Vermeer's Girl With a Pearl Earring - my master copy.



Master copy of Vermeer's classic Girl With a Pearl Earring.  This is a progress shot.  Oil on hardboard, size is 8" x 10".   Check out the completed work along with all my other paintings at my online gallery at Christopher Griffith - Fine Art.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Christopher Griffith - Art



I am an artist living in Botetourt County who paints in oils.  My goal is to learn to paint in the manner of classical realism in the spirit of Leonardo da Vinci, Rubens, Caravaggio, Rembrandt, and Carel Fabritius. This blog has been a journal of sorts with regards to my learning experiences how to paint like the masters.  You can visit my website here at Christopher Griffith - Art.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

True Calvinism is the Gospel


True Calvinism is the Lordship of Christ and sovereignty of God over all things, not just salvation, 5-points, otherwise known as "TULIP". Now, please don't get me wrong, Calvinism is about salvation, but it is so much more! Its not just salvation of individuals but the salvation of the entire world. What does that mean? I love the way Doug Wilson says this: The gospel has two-prongs:

1. We can be reconciled because Jesus Christ, the Son of God has come, was crucified, dead and buried under Pontius Pilate, risen on the third day and ascended to the right hand of His Father. That means....

2. Christ is Lord - if He is not Lord/King over all the nations, He is not Lord over any nation and therefore not Lord over any individual and therefore we are still in our sins. But thankfully, this is not true! Christ is Lord! He has conquered sin and death and has dealt the crushing blow of victory over the devil.

That is the gospel and if you don't have both prongs, you've got a truncated "gospel." That two-pronged explanation is Calvinism pure and simple. A diamond is a simple thing with many facets. The Christian Faith is like that: simple, yet complex. Jesus told the disciples on the road to Emmaus that all the things written back there in the OT were written about Him! Everything is pointing to Jesus, including the promises made to Abraham. Calvinism is nothing more than the biblical teaching of the Gospel as it appears it its many glorious facets.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Quote From A.W. Pink on the Sovereignty of God

“The Lord God omnipotent reigneth.His government is exercised over inanimate matter, over the brute beasts, over the children of men, over angels good and devil, and over Satan himself. No revolving of a world, no shining of a star, no storm, no movement of a creature, no actions of men, no errands of angels, no deeds of the Devil — nothing in all the vast universe can come to pass otherwise than God has eternally purposed. Here is a foundation for faith. Here is a resting place for the intellect. Here is an anchor for the soul, both sure and steadfast. It is not blind fate, unbridled evil, man or Devil, but the Lord Almighty who is ruling the world, ruling it according to His own good pleasure and for His own eternal glory.” - A.W. Pink

Friday, June 24, 2011

New Jerusalem - Coming Down

"Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband." Revelation 21:1-2 (ESV)

What - or who is the New Jerusalem? If she is not the church - then who is she? That one prepared as a bride adorned for her Husband....? I take a postmillennial view in the sense I see the church as being the heart of the Kingdom of God and the gospel spreading to and throughout the nations much like the way yeast infiltrates a lump of dough. Take note: this does not come about by the power of man like some magical "utopia" but happens by the power of God through His Spirit.

Like blood flowing in and throughout the body, so the church is the heart of the kingdom. Granted, the new heavens and new earth came in principle with the incarnation/cross/resurrection of Christ but the influence is spreading (coming down) like leaven in the loaf. As C.S. Lewis said, aliens have invaded enemy occupied territory and the results are nothing less than world domination.

That conquering message of the gospel of the love God through Jesus Christ has been spreading for 2000 years now and the outworking of it cannot be stopped. Christ said he will build his church and the gates of hell will not prevail against her. How is she built? Through the proclamation of the gospel which is the foundation established by the prophets and the Apostles - Christ being the chief Cornerstone.

Jesus used the metaphor of a mustard seed in Luke 13 and in Matt. 13, "It is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his garden, and it grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air made nests in its branches.”

The Kingdom is the new Jerusalem, coming down and infiltrating the entire world until the knowledge of the Lord covers the earth like the water covers the sea. It's that stone cut from the mountain by no human hand, which although small, wound up destroying all other kingdoms, mentioned in Daniel chapter 2. It's the proclamation of the Kingdom of Christ - the gospel. It's the entire theme of God's Word and history! The church, the new Jerusalem, as I said before, she is the heart of the kingdom and through her the kingdom spreads by word and sacrament.

That spread of yeast through the bread, or the bride coming down from heaven, in one sense has only just begun. In other words, I tend to see us as being still in the very early stages of church history - Acts Chapter 29 or possibly 30, if you will. Again, I'm not dogmatic on this, but this explains a bit of my understanding of that passage in Revelation 21.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Everything's Enchanted

There is no need to build a false dichotomy between the physical and spiritual. We can make a distinction between those two without falling into dualism. A naturalistic worldview will only acknowledge the material. But when people say the world is"enchanted" I understand that to mean spiritual. And in one sense, the entire material world is infused with the spiritual. This is, after all, a physical world made by God who is Spirit

Again, I believe everything is enchanted...including that big rock that appears in the sky that some people call the "moon." I'm not pagan but the moon is anything but a cold, lifeless rock orbiting the earth. God, put it there to teach us something about authority.

"And God made the two great lights—the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night—and the stars." Genesis 1:16

"Then he dreamed another dream and told it to his brothers and said, “Behold, I have dreamed another dream. Behold, the sun, the moon, and eleven stars were bowing down to me.” Genesis 37:9

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Wide Window - A Series of Unfortunate Events Book 3

Read this one to my 7-year old daughter with a few edits. It was okay but not quite as good as the first two. The Baudelaire siblings are entrusted to the care of one Aunt Josephine, a worry-wart in the third degree. A sinister pirate-like character by the name Captain Sham shows up, romancing the nervous Aunt but the children suspect him of being guilty of a little dastardly devilry. Could it be "you know who?" Ah! The tattoo of the eye on his left ankle will give away his identity, but wait --Captain Sham has a wooden peg-leg. What gives?

The plot on this one was slightly thin but the dialog was deliciously fun and a blast to act out. I love to make Count Olaf sound sinister and it's very easy to do! He's such a nasty bird!



Thursday, April 7, 2011

Shaming the Devil: Essays in Truthtelling - Book Review

Another fantastic collection of moral essays from Professor Alan Jacobs! In this volume he covers topics such as the benefits of Christians reading W.H. Auden, a critique of Phillip Pullman and his twisted interpretation of Milton's Paradise Lost, (His Dark Materials) and finally a collection of essays on using computers and being challenged to understand just exactly what we "do" when we use those rascally machines. Jacobs pays attention life in the details and I appreciate his honesty

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The Silver Chair-Chronicles of Narnia: Book Review

In C.S. Lewis's The Silver Chair (The Chronicles of Narnia, Full-Color Collector's Edition) Jill Pole and Eustace Scrubb are called into Narnia by Aslan the Lion a.k.a. King of Narnia to be involved in an important mission. Jill is given four signs to remember but throughout the story, she acts like a "lunatic" and loses control of her mind by forgetting. She and Eustace set out on an journey through Narnia which eventually will lead them to the Underworld where they hope to find and release the captive Prince Rilian, son of King Caspian, (the same "Caspian" from Voyage of the Dawn Treader). Many adventures are experienced along the way as they, fly with owls, meet up with giants and one of Lewis's most beloved characters; a Marsh-Wiggle by the name of Puddleglum. Lots of "silver" stuff in this book. The resurrection of a certain person at the end was amazing! (I'm not telling who...) The Silver Chair was, all in all- very "moonish," and I loved it! especially this full color illustrated edition.


Saturday, March 12, 2011

Code of the Woosters-Book Review

"The snail is on the wing and the lark is on the thorn-" or is it the other way around? Hijinks and blackmail with Wooster, Jeeves and company!

In The Code of the Woosters, Bertie Wooster has been summoned by his Aunt Dahlia to Totleigh Towers, a country manner owned by a former judge. Wooster's task? Nab a cow-shaped creamer--from the judge! who already suspects Wooster of "foul play." Also, while at Totleigh Towers, Wooster attempts to mend several love spats between couples. Can he be the instrument of reconciliatory "love?" or will he end up in the "chokey" for the accusation of pinching a police officer's helmet? Will Jeeves save the day once again? Will Bertie be able to hold to the "Code of the Woosters?"

P.G. Wodehouse's books are so humorous, I feel like I have to read portions aloud to my wife! (Imagine me chasing her around the house, "but you've got to listen to this!) This book is very funny and man--the plot on this one is tight!