A pain in the neck

Flemish artist Sir Peter Paul Rubens wasn’t joking when he wrote in 1621, ‘I confess that I am better fitted to execute very large works than small curiosities.’  There is certainly nothing small about his only surviving ceiling paintings which cover nearly 2,500 square feet of the Banqueting House in London.


The only problem is that because it is on the ceiling gazing at it for any length of time results in a significant pain in the neck.  To solve this problem mirror-topped trolleys are provided for visitors so that they can admire the paintings for as long as they like without ever having to look up.  The trolleys perfectly reflect the image above them.


In a similar way the Bible declares that as human beings we were not designed to

draw attention to ourselves, but rather reflect the image of God in which we were made.  While all of us can reflect that image to certain extent, we see the only pure reflection in the life of Jesus, who declared to his friends, ‘If you have seen me you have seen the Father.’  The early Christians who knew Him drew this conclusion ‘He is the exact representation of [God’s] being1’ and ‘the image of the invisible God2.’


1Hebrews 1:3

2Colossians 1:15

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