Sunday, April 04, 2010

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter to all our readers!
The picture (right) is taken from our picture set which depicts 'The Resurrection'. Although the setting of this picture is fairly dark, you can still make out the chalk and water whitewash that was used on tomb exteriors in Israel.
I talk more about this in the
'Raising Lazarus' post.

Below is a short poem titled 'Easter Day' written by missionary to India, Amy Carmichael. Hope you like it.

Easter Day

The Lord is risen indeed, Alleluia!
Lord Christ of Easter Day, Christ the victorious,
On this most radiant of all radiant days,
Thee do we worship, Redeemer, all-glorious,
Offer Thee hearts' adoration and praise.

Sealed was the stone, and the rock did enfold Him,
There in the silence of moonlight and stars,
Till the hour struck; then the tomb could not hold Him,
Snapped like a straw death's omnipotent bars.

Evil may triumph to-day, but To-morrow,
Seeth the end of satanical strife.
Fear not and falter not; sin pain and sorrow
Fall when He cometh, the Christ, Prince of Life.

Sound the word over the land and the waters,
Let it sound over the air once again;
Christ hath arisen. His sons and His daughters,
Lift up your heads, for He cometh to reign.

Taken from the book 'Edges of His Ways'. Amy Carmichael was the founder of the Dohnavur Fellowship.


deboraw said...

Hallelujah, what a saviour!

Earnest Graham said...

Dear Graham.

I like that you chose to portray the men running to the tomb. I have only seen pictures of the women at the tomb. This is a nice balance.

Blessings and peace to you this Easter season.

Russ said...

Hi Graham and Earnest,

Just this weekend I was thinking of Peter running to the tomb, what emotions must have been tormenting in the disciples at that time.

I love to listen to Don Francisco singing " He's Alive ". He looks at the resurection through the eyes of Peter.

God bless.


Patrick said...

A Happy Day of Resurrection to everyone! :)

I really love that illustration Mr. Graham. It was so fitting for the Gospel reading of Easter Sunday we have (John 20:1-9).

Trivia: it is only in English and modern German that we actually say 'Easter' (or in German, 'Ostern'). In many tongues, this feast is actually the "Great Day" or "Great Night", the "Resurrection", or even "Passover"! The latter is how it is formally called in Greek (Pascha Anastasimon "Passover of the Resurrection"; cf. Pascha Staurosimon "Passover of the Crucifixion" for Good Friday) and in Latin (Dominica Paschae in Resurrectione Domini "Sunday of the Passover in the Resurrection of the Lord"; Die sancto Paschae "Day of the Holy Passover"; Diei Paschae Resurrectionis "Day of the Passover of the Resurrection")

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed looking over your blog.
God Bless You, Ron

Paul Green said...

Belated Happy Easter Graham. I like the fact you've shown some movement in the scene at the tomb. From classical art to movies the resurrection is usually presented in a regal, static manner. But there was confusion and fear among the women at first and as you illustrate Peter ran to the tomb.
Real emotions at work in reaction to an event they couldn't quite comprehend.

deboraw said...

Graham, Just checking in since you haven't posted for a while. This last week our lesson was on the 'feeding of the five thousand'. It was labeled as 'a boy shares his lunch'. I have seen it in lessons before as that, not that I've ever taught it as that--it's Jesus miracle, not a lesson in sharing, but I don't think anyone has ever done much research into that miracle if they can label it as a lesson on sharing. What are your thoughts there--do you have one on that miracle? Deboraw

Patrick said...

This might be quite unrelated, but your comment reminded me of this tendency in some pulpits today to downplay Jesus' miracle of feeding the crowds that it turns into an account of the "Miracle of Sharing".

In the form I've usually found it, what Jesus actually did was to make those selfish crowds share those hidden stashes of food they kept with them - the boy giving his food and Jesus' blessing the loaves and fish purportedly touched the hearts of the people that they brought out food from under their robes that they had been hiding from each other. Once everyone learned how to share, there was plenty for everyone with twelve basketfuls left over!

Which is kinda funny if you think about it. The disciples and Jesus Himself were under the impression that the crowds hadn't brought anything to eat, but these priests and pastors know that they did all along? How ignorant of the Lord!

Paul Green said...

Well as God knows every thought of man your account has to be faulty Patrick. Jesus could not be deceived. The miracle isn't about sharing but God through Jesus providing for the needs of his people.

Patrick said...

My point exactly!

As I've mentioned, ain't it just strange that there are some people were think they're smarter than God that they actually know what those people in the back were hiding inside their robes? Wow.

deboraw said...

Patrick, and Paul, Yes, that is somewhat the thought here. I actually am ruminating on the idea instead that Jesus can take the puny offering that we give Him (ie. the 5 barley loaves and two small fish--compared to the one talent etc. person) and in His wonderful way magnify it a thousand fold. But the real meaning is still Jesus' miracle...not some small boy sharing. Deboraw

Paul Green said...

Sorry for the confusion Patrick. I see the point you were making now when I read your comment again.

Yes the modern tendency is to rationalize everything and reduce Jesus to just a wandering prophet. It makes me wonder if certain preachers have ever read the gospels in context. If they had they would never say the people knew how to trick God. And to be honest they would never preach such a lie out of respect for God who gave them the brain they claim can deceive their creator.

Patrick said...

That's the sad thing nowadays: since the 'Age of Enlightenment' we humans had the tendency to rationalize anything that smacks of the supernatural.

Here's a trivia: Thomas Jefferson once took a razor and cut out passages from the four Gospels from his Bible, mingling excerpts from one text to those of another in order to create a single narrative. On the way though he removed all those references to the supernatural as well as what he perceived as misinterpretations. The end product is a Jesus who is just one of those 'good men' who taught nice things and was killed because of it: there are no angels, no prophecies, no miracles, no heavenly voices, and no resurrection involved.

It's rather unfortunate that since Pres. Jefferson's time, not much has changed.

churchoutreach said...

Praise be the Lord Jesus!

Bible artist said...

Dear All
my apologies for not being up-to-date with my replies. It's bank holiday Monday here in the U.K. so I'm making an attempt to get caught up replying to the blog comments and finishing the next post.
I've not been completely idle blog-wise, as I'm in the process of preparing a very interesting interview and have a number of posts almost finished. There are also some very interesting 'Guest articles' in the pipeline! On top of this I've been busy answering the many emails that come to me directly too. All this takes time. Anyway......

Many thanks Earnest! I almost included the picture of the women at the tomb but opted for this one instead. Blessings to you too Earnest. Always good to hear from you.

My apologies Russ for not being able to make it to your church conference a few Saturdays ago. commitments at home made things difficult. let me know when the next event is. Many thanks for the link to the 'Don Francisco' song, I agree, it's a great song! Thanks again.

Thanks Patrick! Thanks also for the trivia. Very informative as always!

Thanks Ron, always good to hear from you. Enjoy your blog also.

An even more belated 'Happy Easter' to you Paul, (I'm writing this in May!!) That's a good observation Paul. I hadn't thought about that before. I wonder if it's due to the fact that the classical painters were painting from static models who tended not to be able to pose for long in an action position?

Yes, my apologies for being slow to post! It doesn't surprise me that the only lesson taken by some from this miracle is sharing!! I haven't really blogged in depth on this miracle but would like to.

I agree! for a long time Liberalism in churches has joined with Secularism and Atheism in playing down the miracles of the Bible. Probably most of the children in primary education in the U.K. (apart from those who have a christian input), are being fed a wishy-washy interpretation of the miraculous during the average morning assembly. I remember when my eldest daughter, who was 11 at the time, pulled up her RE teacher to correct her about something she said. Her teacher thought it was hilarious that this little girl had pulled her up over her theology! My daughter was right though! The teacher was teaching nonsense! This was in a Church of England school too!!


deboraw said...

Graham, Glad to 'hear' from you, smile. I feel as if reading your blog has opened my way of looking at some of the common points in the scriptures. That has helped me to grow as a teacher, and a studier, (smile).

I know the resurrection miracle is different from the loaves and fishes, yet often in these times I see many who should know better spending time trying to find 'new' meanings to wow their listeners, instead of being awed by the miracles themselves and praising God for them. Deboraw

Bible artist said...

That's true Deboraw. Much of what goes on today is seeking glory rather than giving it to God. What's the point in trying to come up with something new when we still have so much of the old to figure out!

"There's nothing new under the sun" (Ecclesiastes 1:9)
we've just forgotten it! When it's rediscovered though, we should thank God, and not market it with a book campaign along with a matching wristband and leather diary!
In the UK not too long ago the church organized a 'March of Repentance' which was a good thing. I got a little worried though when they came out with a logo and website!

How did God manage to organize the great revivals of the past without a christian advertising/marketing agency? Heaven knows!;0)

Paul Green said...

Good to hear from you Graham. I think the classical style favored the static, regal pose. The moving image changed our pereception of how "reality" could be represented.
Even early theatre and cinema often consisted of a series of static poses (especially romance stories.)
There is nothing static about the resurrection. Even the very concept suggests movement. Yet the art of the resurrection has been a weak point of many painters and film directors.

Paul Green said...

I was watching Stephen Hawking last night. His explanation for creation included the phrases "lucky" and 'accident." Great explanation from a scientist.
"How do you explain all of creation?"
"Just a lucky accident."
"Thanks Mr. Hawking, that explains everything!"

Paul Green said...

The capitalist society is part of modern life. Not ancient cultures. They traded and bartered but didn't have a stock exchange or limited companies.
Christianity has been hijacked by showmen and women on cable TV and in pulpits all wanting fame and recognition and money. Plenty of money! They see nothing wrong with praying for money with magical amulet crucifixes that you buy from their network or church.

It's basically corrupt. "Businessmen" go from one scam to the next even if it means posing as an evangelist for a while. American TV is full of infomercials that lie and mislead. Many evangelists on TV are just an extension of the system. Lots of teeth, smiles, hair and suits. Very similar to many politicians in America who love to mention God and Family with the all the sincerity of a conman.

deboraw said...

Well, Paul, you know what the scriptures say; "...but we preach Christ crucified, unto Jews a stumblingblock, and unto Gentiles foolishness; but unto them that are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God. (1 Corinthians 1:23-24)

It really is 'nothing new under the sun..." The crucifixion and the resurrection, the creation...really the whole Bible is hard for unbelievers...well, hard for them to believe. They can believe the writings of Hamurabi, (fill in the blank here) but the Bible? Incredulous face here. :0
And Satan can use his conmen/women to cast a bad light on Christianity and turn many away from the light by using his tricks of darkness. Sad face here. :( Deboraw