Why be concerned about the architecture and art of a church building? After all, isn’t style of architecture and its art simply about a person’s taste of color and form?
The appearance of the worship space is first and foremost a theological matter not an aesthetic one. Sometimes we are remarkably careful with our verbal theological statements, yet so flippant with our visual ones. Art and architecture for worship should present a theology that is in harmony with what a worshiping congregation believes and teaches. It should augment the preaching of the Gospel.
It has been said, “The church building is a prime aid, or a prime hindrance, to the building up of the Body of Christ. . . . And the building will always win” (Gilbert Cope). Architecture is more influential on the lives of people than most folks realize. No church building is neutral. It is important that each local worshiping body construct a theologically sound worship space so that it will witness faithfully and help form its people rightfully. Unfortunately, many of our protestant chancels display chaotic theology. The theologically correct worship space coupled with beautiful art will affect the peoples’ understanding of God, and their worship of God. Distinct art and architecture for worship is important and should be, at best, the servant of worshipers.