What follows is a transcript of a conversation with ChatGPT about this project:

ARTIST: I'd like to create a painting inspired by Psalm 18.

ChatGPT: Creating a painting inspired by Psalm 18 sounds like a wonderful and meaningful project. Psalm 18 is a beautiful and powerful passage that can evoke various emotions and imagery. To help you with your painting, let's explore some key themes and verses from Psalm 18 that you might consider incorporating:

A. The Lord as a Strong Tower: Psalm 18:2 - "The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold."

Incorporate imagery of a solid rock or fortress to represent the strength and protection that the Lord offers to those who trust in Him.

B. Deliverance from Troubles: Psalm 18:6-19 - "In my distress, I called upon the LORD; to my God, I cried for help. From his temple, he heard my voice, and my cry to him reached his ears... He sent from on high, he took me; he drew me out of many waters... He brought me out into a broad place; he rescued me because he delighted in me."

Depict a scene of deliverance, with the subject being lifted out of tumultuous waters or challenging circumstances, symbolizing the Lord's intervention in times of trouble.

C. God's Majesty and Power: Psalm 18:10-15 - "He rode on a cherub and flew; he came swiftly on the wings of the wind... The channels of the sea were seen, and the foundations of the world were laid bare... He sent out his arrows and scattered them; he flashed forth lightnings and routed them."

Portray the grandeur and majesty of God's power, possibly through cosmic or celestial imagery.

D. The Lord as a Trainer for Battle: Psalm 18:32-34 - "The God who equipped me with strength and made my way blameless. He made my feet like the feet of a deer and set me secure on the heights. He trains my hands for war so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze."

You might illustrate the Lord as a teacher or guide, helping someone develop skills and abilities to face life's challenges.

E. Praise and Thanksgiving: Psalm 18:46-49 - "The LORD lives, and blessed be my rock, and exalted be the God of my salvation... Great salvation he brings to his king, and shows steadfast love to his anointed... I will give thanks to you, O LORD...”

Incorporate scenes of joyous worship and thanksgiving to capture the heart of gratitude and praise expressed in the verses.

Remember to infuse your painting with your unique artistic style and interpretation while keeping in mind the essence and themes of Psalm 18. This will ensure that your artwork becomes a beautiful expression of your inspiration from this powerful psalm. Happy painting!

ARTIST: Thank you. You have been very helpful.

ChatGPT: You're welcome! I'm glad I could be of help. Happy creating, and have a wonderful day!

These prompts were then entered into AI art engine, STARRYAI+. Prompts and images curated by Donald Zimmerman at DOXA CHURCH IN REDMOND, WA.
20 Truly, truly, I say to you, you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice. You will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will turn into joy. 21 When a woman is giving birth, she has sorrow because her hour has come, but when she has delivered the baby, she no longer remembers the anguish, for joy that a human being has been born into the world. 22 So also you have sorrow now, but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you. 23 In that day you will ask nothing of me. Truly, truly, I say to you, whatever you ask of the Father in my name, he will give it to you.
John 16:20-23
25 “I have said these things to you in figures of speech. The hour is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figures of speech but will tell you plainly about the Father.
John 16:25
"I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”
John 16:33
"Then Pilate took Jesus and flogged him. 2 And the soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on his head and arrayed him in a purple robe. 3 They came up to him, saying, 'Hail, King of the Jews!' and struck him with their hands."
John 19:1-3
"But one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and at once there came out blood and water."
John 19:34
Below are featured various Renaissance-era paintings of the Christmas story. They capture moments that reveal to us both the miraculous nature of the Savior being born and the nature of the Father who sent the Son.
The Meeting Of Zechariah And Elizabeth (1630) - Francesco Guarino
This unlined and well preserved canvas depicts the moment that the angel Gabriel visited the elderly  Zechariah (here shown accompanied by his wife Elizabeth) in the temple  to announce that Elizabeth would give birth to John the Baptist, the  cousin of Jesus. As punishment for his disbelief, Zechariah was struck mute until his wife gave birth.
Mary and Joseph on the Way to Bethlehem (1475) - Hugo van der Goes
The painting, which is a part of the Portinari Altarpiece, shows Mary and Joseph traveling to Bethlehem. The Flemish artist beautifully illustrated Mary’s advanced pregnancy by depicting the aging Joseph carefully guiding his wife down the steep and rocky mountain.
The Light of the World  (1750) - François Boucher
This oil-on-canvas painting, now in the Musée des beaux-arts de Lyon, was Madame de Pompadour's  first commission from the artist and his first large-format religious  work – he only produced a total of five of the latter. It was initially  called The Adoration of the Shepherds. It won him the commission to paint a room at the Louvre as  well as the post of first painter to the king. The painting was placed  on the altar in the closet of one of the ante-chambers of the Château de Bellevue. It passed through several  collections before being assigned to the Louvre by the Office des biens  et Intérêts privé in 1951.
Adoration of the Magi  (1655) - Bartolomé Esteban Murillo
Bartolomé Esteban Murillo became the leading painter in devoutly Catholic Seville, Spain, from the 1640s to the end of his life. He painted almost exclusively for Seville’s many churches and religious orders. This painting is his only known depiction of the Adoration of the Magi—the wise kings from the east who come to worship the Christ Child. Murillo treats the subject in an appealingly human way, convincingly expressing the joy, solemn contemplation, and humble devotion of the three kings and their entourage as the infant Jesus is tenderly presented to them by the young Virgin Mary.
Joseph's Dream (1645) - Rembrandt
This oil-on-canvas painting by Rembrandt is now in the Gemaldegalerie in Berlin.Joseph was a dreamer. In the short space devoted to him, he has four dreams at crucial points in the story. This piece deals with his second such dream. King Herod heard of the infant king’s birth from the visiting Magi and in a jealous rage, ordered all males 2 years old and younger to be massacred. An angel warned Joseph by dream of the coming bloodshed and told him to flee to Egypt for safety. Rembrandt’s interpretation gives us an impoverished scene without material comfort, glamor or sense of security.

FALL 2022


Artificial intelligence has made stunning progress and is now playing an increasing role in the creation of artwork and imagery. On the Eastside of Seattle, we have many people in our congregation that work in AI and related fields. As we prepared for our series on the seven deadly sins, I wanted to know what a "computer" would think each of the sins look like. 

The results stunned me. 

I've produced through different prompts multiple results to select the strongest images. I believe the final selections are fascinating and worthy of reflection. Some lend themselves to their own story.

With that background, here you will find a curation of the 2022 art gallery held at Doxa Church for the 7 Deadly Sins series.  The individual pieces are on display on Doxa Church in Redmond from Sept 18th until Oct 30th, 2022. All of the images were created by CODEWAY’s Wonder AI application. I provided the variable prompts,  writing, and editing.

Donald Zimmerman


“Greed is not a defect in the gold that is desired but in the man who loves it perversely by falling from justice which he ought to esteem as incomparably superior to gold…”
-Augustine “City of God”

A warning to the man
who has built up his life
with coin and sweat
to one day fall under its shadow
the shadow of a towering mound
no light passes through
no escape is made

one day the mound moves
and has life of its own
life that darkens and destroys
life that tolerates no ounce of contentment
more is not more enough
more is only a stacking stone for more
for he must grow taller
or he dies.


the rage of a child
who suspects robbery
makes us glad they can't lift heavy things

we grew up and learned to lift
but never to give away what's "ours"
have we?

when the possessions
of a peer are shiny and clear
the ones we own dull and darken

a grateful thought is hard to form
we've felt the clouded mind
haven't we?

a woman is introduced
or maybe just crossing paths
with another put together just right

we assess the threat and notice the score
we've learned to size them up
haven't we?


we were friends.

it started small
too many words in that story
too many rations consumed
too many moments wasted waiting

it started growing
I tried to block the sound  of his voice
I tried to walk farther ahead
I tried to only leave the food out I could spare

it started burning
I just want him to be silent
I can't get far enough away from him
I'm hungry now and there's almost nothing left

it started scheming
the others would hardly care
if I could just find an edge and help him a little
I can't wait to be rid of him

it's done.
we were friends.


freedom to look
scanning and swiping
faceless but useful

freedom to imagine
wanting to be wanted
having the power

freedom to access
easily pulled up
from everyone's pocket

freedom to weigh down
guilt comes in cycles
chains keep appearing

freedom to be locked up
unsatisfied but trying
more lonely not less

freedom to disappear
can't see things right
can't see myself right either


full plans
empty chest
time to go out and feast

full menu
empty chest
time to try something new

full table
empty chest
time to clear some plates

full belly
empty chest
time to push through the discomfort

full evening
empty chest
time to call it quits

full mind
empty chest
time to try again later


don't want to stay
don't want to go
but I can float about this life
its downturns, its pain, its disappoinments
only inches below
but far enough to let me sleep

don't want to stay
don't want to go
but i can sink below this life
its weight, its burdens, its conflicts
only inches above
but far enough to let me hide

don't want to stay
don't want to go
so i will remain still
until the ground consumes me


ambitions swirling around
all i've done, all i've pushed
my ideas, my experience

don't they know
I could make this great
no one sees it but I do

they say i've changed
and they are right
i've grow stronger

if they won't listen
if they refuse to see it
i'll burn this place down