Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Passing By

"Is it nothing
to you, all you who pass by? Look around and see. "
Lamentations 1:12 NIV

Oh, what an indictment on us all!

Years ago someone painted a picture of Christ titled "To the Unknown God." I quote from The Interpreter's Bible, Lamentations: "Past him is flowing, on one side and the other, a crowd of people representative of our modern life, men and women in rich dress and poor people in ragged attire; clergymen engaged in heated theological discussion; men reading newspapers, a priest intoning a prayer, a mother and her child -- all sorts of people. Only one of them looks at the suffering figure of the Savior, and she but for one shocked glance. Is it nothing to you, all ye that pass by? What a picture of our modern life in its neglect of the Christ!"

Many years ago a Parisian artist set up his studio in a cab. "He drove from place to place, painted the scenes in the street, and into all these pictures of modern Parisian life introduced the Christ. Even Paris was startled at his daring. In the midst of the follies, jostled by the ... frivolous crowd, stood Christ – his eyes searching, sorrowful, entreating! The painter, too, painted him, not in his Eastern dress of long ago, but in modern costume. It was the ever-present Christ he meant to represent: it was the message that Christ is in Paris and London and New York today, as he was in Jerusalem two thousand years ago; and painting Christ thus in the heart of the frivolous throng, he recalled it to that which alone can glorify life, the power of love and sacrifice" (Anonymous).

In yet another painting W.S. Burton painted a picture entitled, "The World's Gratitude." It shows the sad, questioning face of Christ looking out from behind the bars of a prison. "The artist has succeeded in giving to the face an aspect of tender sorrow, there is a haunting look in the eyes which penetrates into the heart and challenges each individual onlooker" (From 2500 Best Modern Illustrations, 1935).

Oh, Father, we beg You to help us not to pass You by!  

Is it nothing to you, all ye that pass by? What a picture of our modern life in its neglect of the Christ!.

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