Today's Gospel in Art - Martha works and Mary listens


Christ in the House of Martha and Mary, by Diego Velazquez, 1618 © National Gallery Londo

Christ in the House of Martha and Mary, by Diego Velazquez, 1618 © National Gallery Londo

Gospel of 8th October 2019 - Luke 10: 38-42

Jesus came to a village, and a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. She had a sister called Mary, who sat down at the Lord's feet and listened to him speaking. Now Martha who was distracted with all the serving said, 'Lord, do you not care that my sister is leaving me to do the serving all by myself? Please tell her to help me.' But the Lord answered: 'Martha, Martha,' he said 'you worry and fret about so many things, and yet few are needed, indeed only one. It is Mary who has chosen the better part; it is not to be taken from her.'

Reflection on the Painting

Immediately after the Parable of the Good Samaritan we looked at yesterday, Luke shares this story of Jesus at the home of Martha and Mary. We are told that Mary rather chose listening to the teachings of Jesus, over helping her sister prepare food. In this painting by Velazquez, we see Mary sitting at Christ's feet listening to Jesus' teaching. Christ is shown as a bearded man in a blue tunic. He points His fingers at Martha, the woman standing behind Mary, rebuking her for her frustration.

Martha, on the other hand, painted as the main protagonist in this story, firmly put in the foreground, is seen preparing food in the kitchen. Her cheeks are red, her look is rather saddened and her wrinkled puffy cheeks, all show that she is upset and frustrated... To read on see: www.christianart.today/daily-gospel-reading/197


Tags: Christian Art Today, Patrick van der Vorst, Martha and Mary

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