This piece was created for Awaken's
Advent Art Series in 2019 to go along with our series "Hidden," on elements that are not normally focused on in the advent story.
For my piece I focused on Luke 2:19 (cf Luke 2:51) where Luke notes that Mary "treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart" when hearing what the shepherds heard about Jesus from the angels. Commentator Joel B. Green notes in his commentary on Luke about responses to the display of the supernatural that [while many on the scene respond with amazement which may not be equivalent to faith and gives no guarantee a correct understanding will be reached] and goes on to say:
"This is the response of the undifferentiated crowds in 2:18, but not of Mary. For her, more reflection is needed in order to appreciate fully the meaning of this concurrence of events, and her pondering is with a view to hitting on the right meaning of these things. Even in the presence of those exalted and direct affirmations of the identity of the newborn child, then, contemplation of what God is doing in and through these events continues."
In summary, Mary actually thought about what she was seeing and hearing and didn't just rush into an amazement that may have quickly faded after the fact. There have been countless brilliant and contemplative women since the dawn of time, but rarely was this acknowledged in the time that the New Testament was written so these statements are important and should be recognized.
My drawing shows a literal treasure chest with Mary's name (in Greek) on it, in a room which has Luke 2:10-11 on the left wall, Colossians 2:9-10 on the right wall, and on the back wall Isaiah 53:11-12, with the word עברי (my servant) large in the middle. עברי in the Isaiah passage is referring to the Suffering Service interpreted in Christianity to be Jesus, but I'm also using the word outside of Isaiah 53:11 to refer to Mary who was also serving God and chosen of God for giving birth to Jesus.
And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.
For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity dwells in bodily form. And you have been made complete in Christ, who is the head over every ruler and authority.
After the anguish of His soul,
He will see the light of life and be satisfied.
By His knowledge My righteous Servant will justify many,
and He will bear their iniquities.
Therefore I will allot Him a portion with the great,
and He will divide the spoils with the strong,
because He has poured out His life unto death,
and He was numbered with the transgressors.
Yet He bore the sin of many
and made intercession for the transgressors.