[forthright] Jesus of the Pizza Pan

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From: "Forthright Magazine" <forthrightmag@...>
Date: Mon, 14 Mar 2011 17:53:29 -0300
Forthright Magazine
http://www.forthright.net
Straight to the Cross


COLUMN: FINAL PHASE

Jesus of the Pizza Pan
  by J. Randal Matheny, editor

A Massachusetts man opened his garage and saw Jesus
and, maybe, Mary looking at him from the stains of a
pizza tray. From that "spiritual" experience he
observed Ash Wednesday and attended his denomination's
meeting for the first time in 20 years.

People find Jesus and the "Blessed Virgin" Mary in all
sorts of unlikely places: imprinted in foods, outlined
in trees and in concrete, traced in plastic, cloth,
wood, and rock, all supposedly by miraculous or
mysterious means.

Such sightings, however, take on the character of
seeing figures in the shape of the clouds. It takes a
good imagination and not so much faith. Sometimes one
wonders how much the possibility of appearing in a
30-second news clip influences these vain imaginations
(see Romans 1:21).

What the pizza-tray owner should have seen on his
dirty pan was the message kids write on the back
window of dusty cars: "Wash me." Maybe he saw
something religious in the stains because of an
unclean conscience.

People see Jesus everywhere around them, except for
one obvious place: the Bible. In Scripture God
presents the exclusive and totally accurate picture of
Jesus of Nazareth, promised Messiah, Son of Man, Son
of God, Lord and resurrected Savior.

When Scripture is rejected, however, it appears that
the religious impulse in the human heart refuses to be
squelched and therefore imprints itself wherever it
can find expression. Even on a pizza pan.

Reading the Bible won't get you on the nightly
newscast, but it will, if obeyed from the heart as the
infallible word of God, get you into heaven.

Meditating on Scripture and doing the divine will
revealed therein won't make Jesus pop up in the
crockery, but it will restore in every heart the
divine image in which we were created.

After all, isn't it better to have Jesus stamped in
the heart than on a pizza pan?

"[You] have put on the new self, which is being
renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator"
(Colossians 3:10 NIV).

--

Online, a link to the news story and video, and a
picture of the pizza tray, as well as your opportunity
to comment on the editor's article: http://is.gd/i9zNOy

You can help get the word out. Here's how:
http://www.forthright.net/editorial/lend_a_hand.html