Beuronese Murals - Jesus Teaching in the Temple

Jesus Teaching in the TempleTeaching in the Temple

The panel of "The Boy Jesus in the Temple" finds its source in the Gospel of Luke (2:41-52). The Holy Family had traveled to Jerusalem to celebrate the Passover. But as they began their return trip home, a 12-year-old Jesus was left behind. "After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions."

In this mural Jesus is seated on a platform in front of a column, with four steps and a footstool leading to his seat above the elders. A garlanded rope (red and green ribbons around live branches) stretches between the pillars in the Temple. Jesus' posture is reminiscent of the majestas domini postures, so important in the middle ages: a seated Jesus, holding a book in his left hand while raising his right hand in blessing.

The books first open page reads: "Isaisa proph. Surge illuminare Jerusalem quia venit lumen tuum et gloria domini super te orta est. Qui ecce tene(b)rae operient terram et caligo populos super te autem orietur Dominus et gloria eius in te videbitur. Et ambulabunt gentes..." (Isaiah 60:1-3a) ("Isaiah the prophet. Arise, shine, Jerusalem, for your light has come and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you. For behold darkness will cover the people but the Lord will arise upon you and his glory will be seen in you. And the nations shall walk..."). On the second page are two prayers, the in Engligh: "O Sacred Heart, we offer to thee all our works. Bless our efforts we beseech thee"; the second prayer, in German, is difficult to decipher, but it ends with: "...uns O Herr, lass finden sich und gehorchen ewiglich."

The figures of Joseph and Mary on one side, and those of the five teachers of the law frame the figure of Jesus, who appears to be addressing his parents. A basket of scrolls sits at the foot of the stairs, representing the texts of Scripture which Jesus had been explaining to the scribes.

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