As part of my Religion and Media Class I have been asked to select an image that was either a favorite of mine or something that was provocative.
The reason I selected this particular image was because it was a picture as opposed to some other artwork medium. There aren’t many pictures that are used as art to represent Jesus. This picture tells the story of the walk on the road to Emmaus, which takes place after Jesus has been crucified.
What I find interesting to reflect about this particular image centers around who Jesus is walking alongside of, a Nazi solider. Jesus is even carrying the knapsack and gun of the soldier. On the one hand I can see how the photographer is trying to show that Jesus is revealed to all, and that all may be opened to hearing and receiving God’s redemption. On the other hand, I find this image to be very troubling because of the role that religion was used by the state during the reign of the Third Reich. This idea of Gott mit uns (God with us) being used as a means of authority for the actions they took. I imagine that this image may be especially troubling for our Jewish brothers and sisters. This represented image of Jesus could be interpreted as collusion between Christians and the Nazis. If you don’t know the story and the meaning about what takes place on the road to Emmaus, it is unclear how Jesus and the Nazi soldier relate to one another.
What do you think?
If you are interested in looking at other Images of Jesus by this photographer feel free to check out his website.