I’ve always loved this story. So I drew my vision of it.
I wanted to depict the childlike innocence of the boy Jesus standing before the austere elders. The scripture is being intently studied to check his accuracy. But I wanted the scriptures to actually blind the elders to Jesus who is standing right before them. Jesus seems to be casting light, but the scripture is blocking their vision and throwing them into the shadows of darkness and ultimately ignorance.
Being blinded by scripture is a common theme in the scriptures. The bible is one of the most self-deprecating books on the planet, in my opinion.
Are we in danger of blinding ourselves to the spirit of Christ in all things by restricting ourselves to our narrow understanding of scripture? Are we too in danger of throwing ourselves into the shadows of darkness with our austerity?