The art world never ceases to amaze me. Earlier this year, a painting which once sold for £45.00 at auction was identified as a work by Leonardo Da Vinci and is now estimated to be worth a world record £120million!
The oil on wood panel painting, Salvator Mundi, or Saviour of the World, depicts Christ with his right hand raised in blessing and his left hand holding a globe. It will be shown at The National Gallery, London, in a Leonardo da Vinci: Painter of the Court of Milan Exhibition from 9 November 2011 – 5 February 2012.
Leornado Da Vinci is said to have painted the picture 500 years ago following a commission from Louis XII of France in 1506 and he finished it seven years later. The image of Christ giving his blessing to the world was a popular subject in French and Flemish art and the half-length pose is typical of the Renaissance era. During its long history the painting also ended up in the possession of Charles I of England and following his execution it went to Charles II and it remained in London for 400 years. It eventually ended up in the collection of Sir Francis Cook and in 1958 it was sold by Sotheby's for just £45.00 and attributed to a student of Da Vinci called Giovanni Boltraffio.
The really interesting thing is that the only reason the painting sold in 1958 for £45.00 and not millions of pounds sterling is because of ignorance. At the time it sold for next to nothing because it was thought to have been painted by an unknown Giovanni Boltraffio. But even then, it was always worth more because it was an original painting by Da Vinci.
In the same way, many Christians are not enjoying their birth right in Christ because of a lack of knowledge. The devil is cheating them of all the “heavenly blessings” with which God has blessed them in Christ Jesus. The Bible tells us that “my people are destroyed from lack of knowledge” (Hosea 4: 6, NIV©1984)
So many children of God are not enjoying the abundant life which Jesus offers. In John 10: 10, Jesus made it very clear that He came that we may “have life and have it in all its fullness”. In other words, Jesus came to save us so that we can have life to overflowing; so we can have life more abundantly.
As we celebrate Christmas, let us be reminded that Jesus came into the world in the very first Christmas to save us from our sin. In redeeming us, He has given us everything that pertains to life and godliness. In Jesus, we can have life in all its fullness. To know your rights in Christ and to fully enjoy them, you need to:
· Seek first God’s Kingdom and His righteousness,
· Spend more time with the Lord in daily communion and fellowship; and
· Spend time with the Bible in daily personal study and meditation.
Have a very merry and Christ-centred Christmas. Happy holidays!