Truth Personified

There is a lot of richness to this short excerpt from John’s Gospel, which we will read on Sunday morning for Reformation Day.  One word that John uses often in his Gospel, and it comes up here, too, is TRUTH.

I’d like to share a piece of art with you that I found compelling.  It’s by Francois Lemoyne (1688-1737), a French rococo painter who spent his entire career in Paris, working on commission, mostly for the palace.  The subject of Lemoyne’s art was often these grand ideas portrayed in Greek mythology, or Christian bible stories.

The title of this work is Time Saving Truth from Falsehood and Envy.  Today, this painting hangs in London.

Time Saving Truth from Falsehood and Envy - Francois Lemoyne, 1737

The first thing I notice about this painting is that Time is strong, determined, and obviously triumphant.  Truth is more delicate, the only figure portrayed as female.  But Truth is lifted higher even than Time.  Falsehood has cowered, mask exposed, completely powerless.  And Envy is subsumed in the background–almost faded away–the first to have been conquered.

What do YOU notice?

If you had to draw art portraying John’s Gospel story, what/who would truth look like?

What picture of truth is John’s Gospel painting–with words–this week?

Powerful Creator, Loving Savior, Comforting Spirit, you are truth personified.  Amen.

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