Friday, 27 March 2009

A Picture of Christ

I came across this painting by Rembrandt - some say attributed to him - two years ago while on a retreat. What attracts me to the image is the humanity of Christ. Somehow the artist captures both a sense of youthfulness - he has a young man's hair - and great age - his eyes seem to be looking back to the begining of time. The artist combines a stronged-featured face with a sense of vulnerability.

For me this comes as close as possible to how I imagine Jesus would have looked. His brown cloak and the brown background show someone who would not stand out in a crowd, yet his face is immediately attractive showing a sense of repose, but not inscrutable. This is a Jesus you could touch and talk to.

I can put the Jesus of this image into the first chapter of John's gospel, where he invites the first two disciples to spend the day with him. At the end of that day they say, "We have found the Messiah."

I don't surround myself with religious art, but in this picture I could say with those two disciples, "Here is the Messiah."

No comments: