Bacon From Acorns is now LifeCraft.

“Jesus said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping? Whom do you seek?’ Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him…”
John 20:15

This really struck me this Easter. According to the account of John, when Mary Magdalene turned away from the angels in the tomb, she saw a man whom she did not recognize.

Immediately she judged that he was a gardener.

Was it how he was dressed? Or was it something in his look, his demeanor? Of course, the tomb was in a garden–a noteworthy fact in itself. But is any man in a garden immediately supposed to be a gardener?

It is interesting that John chose to record this detail. It is perhaps a way of emphasizing that at first she failed to recognize Jesus. But in the famous painting of this scene Beato Angelico portrays Jesus holding a hoe. This great artist prompts us to ponder anew: was there in reality a specific reason that Mary Magdalene ‘mistook’ Jesus for a gardener.

Perhaps I go too far, but I can’t help but think this was somehow a fitting mistake, if really a mistake at all. In writing on this event Gregory the Great actually takes this very approach: Mary was in a sense right. For the Risen Lord is a gardener: a spiritual gardener, planting seeds in Mary’s soul.

Surely there was a garden in the home at Nazareth. I wager that as a boy Jesus would take a break from carpentry to see how his gourds and melons were growing. What a very pleasing image; as is that of him with a hoe in his hand, even after rising from the dead.

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE:
Trees vs. the News

Trees vs. the News

“Trees were the temples of the gods, and, following old established ritual, country places even now dedicate an outstandingly tall tree to a god.” Pliny the Elder, Natural History What we find in the news and social media tends to frame much of what we think about...

read more
Grateful for the Time: A Retrospect on My Lockdown

Grateful for the Time: A Retrospect on My Lockdown

“…and this will be realized in their living together…” Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics For many of us the external constraint to remain at home has come to an end. A retrospective glance is perhaps in order. For a moment I am going to abstract from the surrounding...

read more
A Father, and Choosing a Spouse

A Father, and Choosing a Spouse

“Reason my son Should choose himself a wife, but as good reason The father, all whose joy is nothing else But fair posterity, should hold some counsel In such a business.” Shakespeare, A Winter’s Tale [Polixenes, King of Bohemia, to his son.] How does one choose a...

read more

Pin It on Pinterest