Thursday, 30 March 2017

Whose?

This week at AFC we are looking at the Sieger Koder painting entitled: ‘Whose?’

It’s an intriguing interpretation of the gospel incident when we are told in John 19: They took Jesus’ clothing and divided it into four shares.

There seems to be something of a scrum in the painting as Jesus’ garment is tugged and fought over.

It's as if everyone wants a bit of Jesus, which I suppose in one way is fine.  However, that all too quickly becomes a problem when we start thinking that Jesus ‘belongs’ exclusively to us: to my tradition, to my understanding, my theology and my lifestyle.

So Koder has provocatively painted religious leaders and possibly a freedom fighter as the ones who have a tug of war over Jesus’ shirt. 

I guess it’s the easiest – and in some ways laziest – thing in the world to make God in our own image.  It’s like pulling on Jesus’ garment and saying ‘I’ve got him’!

Well, isn’t Jesus actually bigger than that?  The Cosmic Christ is free and not bound by us or our conventions or expectations, in fact he continually exceeds these.  That’s because God is surely to be found anywhere and everywhere, in surprising people and places, both inside and outside the Church. 

If dividing his garment is simply about ‘owning’ Jesus – it won’t be the most important thing any of us could do this coming Easter!

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