Wolf in Sheep's Clothing
by Maurice Campobasso,
Digital art,
Executed 2018,
© Maurice Campobasso

Wolf in Sheep's Clothing
by Maurice Campobasso,
Digital art,
Executed 2018,
© Maurice Campobasso

Gospel of 26 June 2019

Sheep who underneath are ravenous wolves

Matthew 7: 15-20

Jesus said to his disciples: ‘Beware of false prophets who come to you disguised as sheep but underneath are ravenous wolves. You will be able to tell them by their fruits. Can people pick grapes from thorns, or figs from thistles? In the same way, a sound tree produces good fruit but a rotten tree bad fruit.

A sound tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor a rotten tree bear good fruit. Any tree that does not produce good fruit is cut down and thrown on the fire. I repeat, you will be able to tell them by their fruits.’

Reflection on the Digital Art Work

All throughout history, mankind has used images to tell stories, the earliest of which appear in the cave paintings in Lascaux, France, circa 15,000BC. From then onwards, art has always held a special place in the development of our human story. Think of Ancient Greek and Roman times where art flourished to honour Gods, commemorate funeral scenes, sporting events, tell mythological tales etc. Most of the art we have looked at so far dates from the Middle Ages onwards, where alongside the creation of ever evolving new, avant-garde compositions, technical advances were also made. Today we look at the latest of these technological advances: digital art, which uses digital technology as part of the creative process. The impact of digital technology (mobile phones, computers etc) has not only transformed our lives, but has also seriously influenced activities such as drawing, painting, sculpting, composing music, etc…

Today’s work is made by Maurice Campobasso, an Australian digital artist, using computer software to create these images. Like many artists before him, creators of images have always encountered technological barriers in their work and always sought to push boundaries. Digital images are simply the newest medium for artists to tell their stories constrained now only by the limits of their own imagination. The film industry, comics industry, gaming industry, publishers, advertisers, etc all use this art form to create images. Today’s image is very impactful, straight to the point and shows us exactly what a wolf in sheep’s clothing looks like. A child can immediately understand what it is about. Digital art can bring this clarity and polished result.

The sheep is a symbol for innocence, sincerity, and harmlessness. For a wolf to take on the appearance of a sheep, means that he deviously gains entrance in the midst of a flock to then cause havoc and destruction in the end. The word that stands out for me the most in today’s Gospel reading is ‘ravenous’. The image of ‘ravening' is of both violence and greed. The false prophets Jesus mentions are not merely wicked at heart and opposed to the truth, but they wish to harm you, and that for their own gain. So how can we spot them? Only by reading His Word, spending time with God and praying, will we become trained in detecting the wolves…

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