One of the lectionary text's this week is Matthew 22:15-22...the Pharisees went out and laid plans to trap him in his words. They sent their disciples to him along with the Herodians. "Teacher," they said, "we know you are a man of integrity and that you teach the way of God in accordance with the truth. You aren't swayed by men, because you pay no attention to who they are. Tell us then, what is your opinion? Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar or not?" But Jesus, knowing their evil intent, said, "You hypocrites, why are you trying to trap me?Show me the coin used for paying the tax." They brought him a denarius, and he asked them, "Whose portrait is this? And whose inscription?" Caesar's," they replied. Then he said to them, "Give to Caesar what is Caesar's, and to God what is God's." When they heard this, they were amazed. So they left him and went away.
What an interesting text given the economic state of the United States and the upcoming presidential election here. I look forward to hearing messages from the pulpit this coming Sunday.
Contemporary Texas artist, James B. Janknegt has a uniquely refreshing style of retelling Biblical stories in his art. I particularly enjoy how he intertwines contemporary issues and instances to emphasize how the Bible never stops applying to our lives. The work featured here is titled Rich Fool. The artist's explanation is offered here. I suggest you also look at the work and think about:
- what do you see?
- what title would you give this work?
- what might be the purpose of this art?
- do you recognize any images?
- what kind of movement does the art suggest (speed, frenzy, rhythm, stillness, etc.)?
- what does the color remind you of, or what feeling does it give?
It's always exciting to discover contemporary Christian artists and I encourage you to take a break from your daily routine and explore this artist's website.