The Image of Christ in Our Souls
There were pictures left in your places this morning. Who can tell me the name of it? The Last Supper. The picture shows Christ at the Last Supper, surrounded by the twelve Apostles. Look very carefully at the picture and see if you can answer this question. It is a hard question but you can get it. Suppose a movie were taken of the Last Supper and this picture were one of the still shots—like those that are put outside theaters—what part of the Last Supper would it be taken from? Is it taken before or after Judas left? Judas is still there. The Apostles are upset about something. Look at St. Peter. Our Lord has just said, "Amen I say to you, that one of you is about to betray Me." And they being very much troubled began every one to say, "Is it I , Lord?" No wonder they are excited.
There is a well-known story about this picture. The painter was an artist named Leonardo da Vinci. The original is painted on the wall of the dining room of a monastery. For years da Vinci labored over his painting. Everything had to be perfect. The first person da Vinci painted was Christ, our Lord. Can you find him on the picture?
The artist was looking for a man to pose as Christ. He must look something like the bravest, kindest, and noblest man who ever lived. Going to the cathedral he saw a young man kneeling in prayer. He was just the type. The artist asked him to pose and he did. Da Vinci then went on to paint the other characters. Years later the picture was finished except for the picture of Judas. Da Vinci looked all over the city for a man who looked like Judas He went to the jail and there he saw a man into whose face crime had carved its initials, the lines of the face were hard and evil looking. He asked him to pose for Judas. The man said, " I will if you pay me." He posed for the picture sitting at the table as you see him, grasping the money bag. When it was done the artist payed the man and he turned to go. He stopped at the door and said, "Leonardo da Vinci, don't you recognize me? You should. I am in your picture twice. Years ago I posed for you as Christ."
We have been speaking often about the image of Christ. We showed you how it was to be built up. This story is told to you as a lesson. The image of Christ in us may be destroyed. Our souls may be like images of Christ now and in a few years they may not be. The thing which will destroy the image of Christ within us is sin. We must watch and pray. Our image of Christ is to be carefully guarded. We have worked hard to make it and we should work just as hard to keep it. If it is worth making it is worth keeping. Let people see the image of Christ in your faces and on your souls.
We will never fall into sin if we keep in mind the four last things. Does anyone know what the four last things are? Death, judgment, hell, and heaven. Right. These are the reasons why we must build up our image of Chns and take care of it. Remembering them we will not want to do anything that will harm our souls We will avoid sin because that is the poison of our souls. Remember thy last end and thou wilt never sin.
Source: Heavenwords, Imprimatur 1941