Portraits, not photographs


I found an interesting blog entry that compares the four Gospels to portraits, rather than photographs, writing:

What the four gospel writers did was paint a “portrait” of WHO they SAW as this man called Jesus, who became the Christ. Mark was not neutal in His portrait. Neither Matthew nor Luke were neutral as well. And of course John was neither neutral nor objective in His portrait. Why do so many denominations take such an objective stance? Tell me, why is there that need?
Why indeed? The blog then goes on to invite all of us to pick up our brush and paint our own portraits. Religion at its best, in my view, is a creative process--an echo and a celebration of the creativity that pervades the universe and which God plays such an active part in.

Artists have always stood on the shoulder of giants. Every painter is inspired by those who painted before. If Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John are giants, can we stand on their shoulders and paint our own portraits?


Pastor Bob Cornwall said...

I agree that the gospels are more portrait than photograph. They are interpreted reflections on events not exact transcripts.

That being said, as we paint our portraits it's important that we make use of these original portraits, for their portraits are much closer to the original.

The gospels themselves are good examples. Matthew and Luke and perhaps even John make use of and depend on Mark's portrait. They add to it, of course, but they also incorporate its witness.