The human being, creature of eyes, needs the image. Leonardo da Vinci

Art and the Church -> Materials for Use in Churches

YearC, Epiphany 8 - Dutch tile about speck and log

Year C, 8th Sunday after Epiphany

Dutch tiles could be found in abundance in Dutch houses from the 17th century onwards. They suggest a contradiction of the widespread idea that the Reformed citizens did not care much for art and the depiction of biblical stories. This tile from Rotterdam portrays Jesus' parable about the speck and the log - very literally, very graphically and a bit primitively. The man on the left makes a step forward, extends his arms. The man on he right seems to be taken by surprise, but he stands his ground. "You hypocrite," says Jesus to the man with the log, "you pretend to be better than the other man, but you very well know that you also fail yourself." Jesus urges us to remove the log that blocks our view of our own failings. When we do this, we will find out that it is hard for ourselves and thus also for the other to face and tackle our deficiencies. Be merciful and do not judge, Jesus says, this must become part of the DNA of your heart!

Marleen Hengelaar-Rookmaaker