I like this picture, it's of a framed print that my wife picked up in an oppie a few years ago. She was attracted to it because her Roman Catholic background had really only depicted Jesus in those colourful “holy” pictures. This seemed to show her that Jesus was more real.
Apparently it is quite a common print from a painting by early 1900's German artist, JR Wehle.
When she first hung it on our wall, I just thought, OK.. I can put up with that.
But it has grown to mean a lot to me. I imagine that it is based on the scripture about Jesus and his disciples wandering through the grainfields on the Sabbath, his disciples picking and eating some of the grain, and then the challenge from the Pharisee's about working on the Sabbath. I understand there had been so many man-made rules created about what was “working” on the Sabbath that it was almost impossible to do anything. Imagine them chewing a bit of wheat as they wander and you see the sinful actions of these guys.
What the “sabbath police” were doing in a grainfield away out in the middle of nowhere, I can only guess, but they saw, and accused Jesus and his disciples of breaking the rules.
Jesus' response – The Sabbath was made to restore men, but when it is changed to become a burden and a hindrance, then it is wrong. The man-made regulations needed to be broken, and our Lord makes that clear.
It appeals to me as if Jesus has a real rebellious side to his character, he challenges the rules. For someone like me who spent his teenage years on the fringe of the anti-establishment movement of the 60's, the story this picture represents showed Jesus as pretty cool.
I'm wondering what it means to me today?