Today's Gospel in Art - Why do you observe the splinter in your brother's eye


The Parable of the Mote and the Beam, by Domenico Fetti Painted in 1619  © Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

The Parable of the Mote and the Beam, by Domenico Fetti Painted in 1619 © Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Gospel of 11th September 2020 - Luke 6:39-42

Jesus told a parable to the disciples: 'Can one blind man guide another? Surely both will fall into a pit? The disciple is not superior to his teacher; the fully trained disciple will always be like his teacher. Why do you observe the splinter in your brother's eye and never notice the plank in your own? How can you say to your brother, "Brother, let me take out the splinter that is in your eye," when you cannot see the plank in your own? Hypocrite! Take the plank out of your own eye first, and then you will see clearly enough to take out the splinter that is in your brother's eye.'

Reflection on the Painting

Our painting by Domenico Fetti is one of thirteen small illustrations of Gospel parables painted in about 1619 for the Gonzaga studiolo. Our painting illustrates Jesus' words of today: 'Why do you observe the splinter in your brother's eye and never notice the plank in your own?' Domenico Fetti with his typical feathery brushstrokes, paints a simple picture. Yet it is highly effective in conveying today's message: the old man is rebuking the young man, yet has a plank in his own eye. Both figures are pointing fingers at each other.

Jesus uses the 'eye' in our reading today. It is through the eyes that we see the world, see each other; the eyes see the good in the world, but also the bad; the eyes observe what others do and how they behave… But what eyes can't do is to look closely at oneself and at one's behaviour. There we need something else than the eyes: our hearts. It is in our hearts and talking to Jesus there that we can observe our own sins, flaws and shortcomings. But our hearts need to be formed and trained to be able to do this… through prayer…

LINKS

Today's story - https://christian.art/en/daily-gospel-reading/541

Christian Art - www.christian.art


Tags: Christian Art, Patrick van der Vorst, Domenico Fetti

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