Jewish contributions to Western Civilization

“The Old and New Testaments are the Great Code of Art.”

– William Blake (artist and poet)

In Visual Art:

Thousands of reprints of Vincent Van Gosh’s Starry Night adorn living room walls, and Van Gogh’s Irises is one of the most popular computer background images. Hanging in thePhiladelphia Museum of Art is Paul Cézanne’s The Large Bathers, a post-impressionist deconstruction of the human body which broke from traditional portraits of the period and paved the way for generations of new artists to explore different techniques of visual representations of the human figure. Both Cézanne and Van Gogh were mentored by a Jewish impressionist and post-impressionist painter named…….. continue reading

 

Blurring Right & Wrong, a Lesson from Charlottesville

copy

Project  3, Post  4: Blurring Right and  Wrong, a Lesson from Charlottesville

Artistic Process:

As shown in the above images, I used a watered down orange to blur the boundary of the grass I had created. I did so to lay the foundation for a more impressionistic horizon line.

Reflection:

In my last post for Project Three I emphasized the importance of reading God’s Word for yourself so that you can know Truth, giving the example of Paul as written in Acts 17:11. I wrote about the propensity for us to be lazy and blindly trust that others are preaching the Word in Truth. Many seek to pervert and to misuse God’s Word for personal gain.

One such example of the deceptive use of God’s word comes to us from Charlottesville, VA. where, on Saturday, some of the more grotesque aspects of human nature were on full display. If you would like to read my response to the Charlottesville incident from a Constitutional perspective at The New Americana national news site you may click HERE.

While scrolling through news stories covering the white supremacist gathering, I came across a reference to Vanguard America, one of the participating supremacist groups. I decided to go to their website and survey the landscape. It was a disturbing exercise.

On  the group’s website is an article about Jews. The one consistent aspect of the article is the author’s manipulation of scripture to justify hatred toward the Jewish peoples of the world. It is absolutely repugnant. John Chapter 8, verses 39-49 were among the scriptures contorted for hateful gain.

The Scripture states:

39 “Abraham is our father,” they answered.

“If you were Abraham’s children,” said Jesus, “then you would[a] do what Abraham did. 40 As it is, you are looking for a way to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God. Abraham did not do such things. 41 You are doing the works of your own father.”

“We are not illegitimate children,” they protested. “The only Father we have is God himself.”

42 Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I have come here from God. I have not come on my own; God sent me.43 Why is my language not clear to you? Because you are unable to hear what I say. 44 You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. 45 Yet because I tell the truth, you do not believe me! 46 Can any of you prove me guilty of sin? If I am telling the truth, why don’t you believe me? 47 Whoever belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.”

Here, Christ was calling out his followers’ sinful nature. The Jews in that exchange were resisting the call for repentance, claiming Abraham’s lineage and righteousness as evidence of their own high-standing with God. Jesus, however, rebukes their claim by pointing out their sinful ways. Still, they resisted.

Christ was calling those around him on the carpet for their failure to seek repentance. Christ was NOT laying a foundation for justified anti-Semitism. You can read others’ commentary on this passage HERE for further understanding.

Yet, those who seek to justify and to spread their hateful sentiments have used Jesus’s words from scripture as a weapon of deception and malice. I wonder how many foolish souls have read the grotesque, Jew-hating screed laid out on the Vanguard America website.

Evil-doers seek to deceive. If you and I do not seek out the Truth of God’s Word, we can be lead astray by the most abhorrent, repugnant elements of society. Please, be a seeker so that you will not be lead astray. Amen!

“And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:32