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The Sailor and the Picture of Christ

Mihály Munkácsy - Trilogy of Paintings of Christ

The following is stated by Rev. B. Fay Mills: “Some of you have seen the great picture that was painted by Muncakszy, of the Christ. That picture was being exhibited in Canada, at Toronto, I think, and there came a wild, rough, wicked sailor to see it. He entered the room, at the time of day when there were no others there; and, paying his money to the woman who sat inside the room, he came in and stood for a moment looking at the canvas as though he would glance at it and go away. But as he looked he could not turn.

He stood there with his eyes fixed on the central figure of majesty and love. In a few minutes he took off his hat and let it fall on the floor. After a few minutes more he sat down upon a seat, and there he reached down and picked up a book that described the picture, and began to read, and every few seconds his eyes would turn towards the canvas, and toward the picture of Christ.

The lady who sat by the door, saw him lift up his hand and wipe away the tears. Still he sat, till five, ten, fifteen, sixty minutes went away; and still the man sat there, as though he could not stir. At last he rose, and, coming softly and reverently toward the door, he hesitated, to take one last look, and said to the woman who sat there:

"‘Madam, I am a rough, wicked sailor. I have never believed in Christ; I have never used His name except in an oath; but I have a Christian mother, and my old mother begged me today, before I went to sea, to go and look at the picture of the Christ. To oblige her I said I would come.

I did not believe that any one believed in Christ; but as I have looked at that form, and that face, I have thought that some man must have believed in Him; and it has touched me, and I have come to believe in Him, too. I am going out from this time to be a believer in Jesus Christ -- and a follower of Him."

O that we may be changed into the same image from glory to glory."

- Prevailing Prayer

Touching Incidents and Remarkable Answers to Prayer - 1893

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