Pictures and Words

I picked this interesting tidbit up in the Sunday School lesson yesterday.

In children’s books, there are mostly and sometimes only pictures. But as nice a pictures are, at some point you will need words to explain them. As we get older we learn to read and understand more words, so we get fewer pictures in our books, until eventually we read books that have no pictures at all.

For the Pharisees, the Old Testament was the “picture book.” The Old Testament is full of pictures of what God was going to do with Jesus. Jesus came to fulfill those pictures, to tell us what they mean. Jesus is literally called the Word in the book of John (1:1). But when Jesus came to tell what the pictures meant, the Pharisees ignored the Word and kept looking at the pictures.

Maybe some of them couldn’t read. Maybe some of them just didn’t like what they read. Maybe we ignore the Word sometimes because it is easier to just look at pictures than it is to read, study, and understand. But that doesn’t mean the Word doesn’t tell us the truth about His pictures.

As an after thought… you know how you read the words in a child’s book while the child looks at the pictures? We should be mature readers of the Word so that when we come across someone who doesn’t understand God’s pictures, we can point them to the Word and read with them.


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