Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Flight into Egypt

Title: The Flight into Egypt

Artist: James B. Janknegt

Medium: Oil on canvas

Size: 51 x 40 cm

Date: 2008

Location: Private collection.

Matthew 2:14-15 chronicles that after waking from his dream, Joseph got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt, where he stayed until the death of Herod. And so was fulfilled what the Lord had said through the prophet: "Out of Egypt I called my son."

Matthew declares that Jesus' sojourn in Egypt fulfills Hosea's prophecy. By quoting the beginning of the passage, Matthew evokes the passage as a whole and shows how Jesus is the forerunner of the new exodus, the time of ultimate salvation. Matthew uses God's pattern in history to remind us that our call and destiny must define us. We are the people of the new exodus, the people of God's kingdom. Matthew's quotation from Hosea also reminds us that Jesus identifies with his people's heritage. Jesus appears as the promised one greater than Moses and the heir of God's call to Israel. As God protected Moses when Pharaoh killed the male Israelite children, so God protects Jesus.

James B. Janknegt was born in Austin, Texas. He attended art school at the University of Texas in Austin and graduated with a BFA in 1978. He left Texas and moved to Iowa City to attend graduate school where he worked with Mauricio Lasansky and Joe Patrick among others. Jim has painted in his off hours while working full time in other capacities, and is currently the building manager for the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin. His work can be viewed at

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