Peter N Millward

Art News, Testimony and Blessings.

Post Top Ad

Sunday 31 December 2023

16:59

The Gate of the Year - 1939

 

In 1939, as the world was engulfed in war, King George VI faced a tremendous responsibility in leading his nation and empire through these challenging times. As the New Year approached, he sought to provide a message of hope and resilience to his people. Drawing from a poem given to him by his daughter, the future Queen Elizabeth II, he shared the poignant words of a poem written by Minnie Louise Haskins, published in 1912. during his Christmas broadcast. This little known poem, with its themes of faith and trust in the face of uncertainty, offered comfort and inspiration not only to his nation, but to all people everywhere and continues to inspire and which we do well to remember today. The world is in a precarious state...and there is only one place we can go to to find hope and comfort.
The King's decision to share these words was a defining moment, one that showed the gravity of the situation and the hope that God would bring them through. The full text of the poem below:
THE GATE OF THE YEAR
'God Knows'
And I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year:
"Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown".
And he replied:
"Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the Hand of God.
That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way".
So I went forth, and finding the Hand of God, trod gladly into the night.
And He led me towards the hills and the breaking of day in the lone East.
So heart be still:
What need our little life
Our human life to know,
If God hath comprehension?
In all the dizzy strife
Of things both high and low,
God hideth His intention.
God knows. His will
Is best. The stretch of years
Which wind ahead, so dim
To our imperfect vision,
Are clear to God. Our fears
Are premature; In Him,
All time hath full provision.
Then rest: until
God moves to lift the veil
From our impatient eyes,
When, as the sweeter features
Of Life's stern face we hail,
Fair beyond all surmise
God's thought around His creatures
Our mind shall fill.
Minnie Louise Haskins 1875 - 1957.
We cannot weigh how much comfort, hope, inspiration and faith those words would have given during those dark days - but they are still as relevent today as they ever were.
The digital image created with AI and photo edtiting.



Friday 29 December 2023

01:53

A Christmas Carol

 

A picture for Christmas - A scene from A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, The ghost of Jacob Marley visiting Ebenezer Scrooge. Perhaps the most significant blessing we can have this Christmas is the gift of repentance. It allows us to truly grasp the ultimate gift of all – the gift of God's Son, Jesus Christ. According to the Word of God, salvation hinges on repentance (Acts 3:19), a concept not widely embraced in our current culture, even among many churches. However, it remains a divine requirement.
Recently, our daughter Dorothy and I watched the 1984 film adaptation of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol," featuring George C. Scott as Ebenezer Scrooge. This film they say, closely follows with the original book, was filmed in Shrewsbury, Shropshire, not far from where I used to live.
While "A Christmas Carol" is not overtly religious, it undoubtedly carries deep spiritual and moral themes. The tale of the selfish old miser, Ebenezer Scrooge, unfolds as a powerful allegory of repentance and redemption. Scrooge's transformation mirrors the essence of turning away from a life of sin and selfishness towards one marked by compassion, generosity, and genuine concern for others.
In Scrooge's journey, pivotal moments occur when he is granted a vision of the consequences of his actions and the true state of his heart. The ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Yet to Come serve as instruments of revelation, exposing the impact of his choices on others and the emptiness of a self-centered existence. This process parallels the core of repentance – a departure from a life of sin towards a path marked by compassion and concern for others. Scrooge's metamorphosis aligns with the biblical concept of metanoia, a change of heart and mind that accompanies a choice to follow Christ rather than our own desires.
In a spiritual context, the story underscores that repentance is a divine gift; we cannot achieve it on our own. We rely on God to reveal our sins because only He can grant repentance (Acts 11:18; 2 Timothy 2:25). Redemption becomes possible for those willing to confront their shortcomings. Charles Dickens, while not explicitly religious, sought to emphasize Christ's teachings in "A Christmas Carol." The narrative captures the essence of repentance and the potential for a renewed and redeemed life.
This Christmas, I extend an invitation to you, dear reader. If you've never grasped the gift of repentance or turned to Jesus Christ, take a moment alone in your room. Pray, make peace with God through Jesus Christ, and ask Him to grant you repentance. "Lord, reveal my sin and grant me repentance because you love me." Let this prayer catalyze self-reflection and a deeper appreciation of the divine gift embodied in the birth of Jesus Christ and be prepared for God to answer your prayers....because He loves you.
May this Christmas season be one of genuine self-awareness, repentance, and a renewed understanding of the profound love encapsulated in the message of Christ for all of us.


Thursday 28 December 2023

00:19

Run to the Light - John 8:12

An apocalyptic vision of the future, the darkness is approaching, many governments have rejected Christianity. Christian foundations and worldview are being overturned, many traditional church denominations have embraced heresy, wickedness and apostasy..... the only hope that exists in this broken, fallen world is still the Lord Jesus Christ, who said I am the Light of the World - John 8:12. And the Bible is still the place where people go to find comfort, hope and Salvation and People are still running to the light and finding that all who follow Jesus will never walk in darkness. Jesus said I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail. Matthew 16:18.

The inspiration for the picture? A few weeks ago I was watching a Derek Prince video on youtube, I must have dozed off as I had a heavy cold so was drowsy.....and then I woke up to a discussion amongst a group of well known intellectuals, discussing Christianity and the question Does God Exist? Listening to what was being said while still sleepy, made me reflect......then I had some kind of vision.......I saw in the vision small figures running away from the impending darkness that was descending upon the world, they were running as fast as they could....in the direction of light which was in the far distance. In the vision they were terrified at what they saw as the darkness approached. I understood what the vision meant - it was as though those who were discussing are terrified of a world without Christianity....and they are honest enough to understand that the world we see, civilisation has been built on Christian principles and foundations.....they understand they owe so much to Christianity. But the world which has been built with this worldview, the world and its framework is fast crumbling. The darkness is approaching, they see what's coming in the darkness....its terrifying. They are running as fast from it as they can.....

This was the video I woke up to Uncommon Knowledge with Peter Robinson https://youtu.be/o2u54a1FL28?feature=shared Does God Exist? A Conversation with Tom Holland, Stephen Meyer, and Douglas Murray

The picture was created with a mixture of AI and edited in Photoshop.

Tuesday 28 November 2023

21:28

Elisabeth Owen - Epitaph to her Son - Harcourt Owen 1899 - 1918

 Harcourt Owen 1899 - 1918

For Remembrance Sunday - A poem by a mother, Elizabeth Owen whose son died during the 1914-18 war.
My heart is filled with longing
For my beloved boy.
My Benjamin of the family
He was my help and joy.
Yes Harcourt was well loved by all
So full of life and fun
Just nineteen years scarce saw he
Before his task was done.
Who nobly laid his young life down
Willing to do his share.
He counted not the awful cost
His country for to spare.
And now he is with Jesus
His life’s sand quickly run
Just help me from my heart to say
Dear Lord thy will be done.
Mother
Life’s course nobly run
Last task nobly done.
_________________________
The above poem was found written inside a presentation book - A Dictionary Of Eminent Welshmen 1700-1900, presented to Harcourt Owen in 1911 at Glandwr CE School, Llanidloes, Wales. Sadly, Harcourt was later to die in what became known as the Great War, 20 June 1918, France, he was just 19 years of age. It is an extremely poignant poem. Most war poetry was made by soldiers, so this is very rare to find something from the perspective of a mother. So for this years Remembrance Sunday, I decided to make a picture about this as it sums up so much. It made me think about Harcourts, mother, Elisabeth.....and maybe she was even there that day the book was presented, so I sketched the presentaton and placed her sitting there in the foreground, clapping. Books have special meaning so for this to be written inside on the flyleaf, it must have been very special indeed....with so many memories, a tribute and prayer and also some kind of closure. There is very little information and no photos of Harcourt, although Harcourt does have a service record, his regiment was the 2/5th Lancashire Fusiliers. There are no known living relatives, but maybe the poem and picture will find a connection and jog someones memory.

The very beautiful and poignant epitaph, was indeed surprising to find........may well have been unseen for years. A mother's grief buried in her son`s school presentation book... I wonder if the family knew of this? ....when older people pass away, their books can hold so much - as in this case. Elisabeth Owen must have kept that book by her when she had the difficult task of going through her deceased sons belongings. - the book must have meant so much, and most likely she sat during the book presentation at school, and of course we can only imagine all the memories that accompany this.


Thomas Harcourt Owens parents - David and Elisabeth Owen


Friday 24 March 2023

17:10

The Grace and Glory Clock

The Grace and Glory Clock.

Designed by C. M. Clarke.

Another fascinating old picture, this one called the Grace and Glory Clock. I am trying to date this but so little information about it and its designer. But must be close to when Charles H Spurgeon passed away, as there is reference to the late CH Spurgeon in the explanation that goes with the picture. I thought the reference to Holy Hands on the clock face was very original, in fact there is much to recommend and to like about this thought provoking clock. Full of scripture references, we can only summise the designer must have spent many happy and blessed hours meditating with his Bible and listening to the tick tock of an old grandfather clock. These old clocks may have gone out of fashion, but the message of this clock is right up to date, in fact all other clocks do well to be adjusted to the Grace and Glory Clock... a clock which tells the correct time at all times of our life even better than the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, London. Because the Grace and Glory Clock tells us how to be ready not just for time, but Eternity. I include the explanation text below for anyone interested:

READER:

The design of this Clock is to exhibit in a brief, simple, and pictorial manner the plan of Salvation; also that it may serve as a spiritual gauge by which the Believer may test his experience in the Divine Life, and illustrate the wealth of God's grace in man's redemption from grace to glory.
Observe, then, first of all. The door once closed and barred against the Lord Jesus, now flung wide open to Him Who for years had been standing by and saying : " Behold, I stand at the door and knock." Here is represented the complete and absolute surrender of the will to God. When this is done, the old deceitful heart of sin and unbelief is taken away, and through faith in the Blood of His Cross, God gives A Clean Heart, also imparting to the soul a Peace which passeth all understanding, together with a joy unspeakable and full of glory. No longer self-centred, but moving with compassion towards the perishing sons of men, ticks its solemn message. The time is short. Therefore, Now is the Day of Salvation and - After Death, the Judgment.


But that it keeps correct time, going neither too fast, by reason of the flesh and fanaticism, nor too slow, through indifference and sluggishness, it is essential it be weighted on one side by the Spirit of God, and on the other side by the Word of God.
Then, as it is kept wound up with the key of Prayer and Praise, does it Redeem the Time by Gathering up the Fragments that nothing be lost.
Next, note, though the works are invisible, yet they are working, as seen in the finger pointing out the way of happiness by Searching the Scriptures.
So is the Christian's life hidden with Christ in God, and with Paul can testify,
Christ liveth in me, not only to keep the heart and life clean, but to make the hands holy, that they may point the unsaved to the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world.
It will be observed that time advances from I to XII (the midnight hour). Printed on the dial between the hours are gospel texts for the child of God to mark his growth in grace, and to see how near he is approaching in spiritual stature to Christ Jesus, Who is the Rose of Sharon, the Lily of the Valley, and the Light of the World.
If conscious of defeat and failure, let him seek with a contrite heart the power of the Holy Spirit, who, under the form of a Dove, is nigh at hand to bless with all grace and empower with all might. The believer, filled with His Presence, will become a Pillar of Strength and Beauty in the Church on earth, and afterwards a Pillar in the Church Triumphant.
Behold the Riches of His Grace in those glorious words by which the late C. H. Spurgeon was converted to God. "Look unto Me, and be ye saved." Be sure, reader, not to look to anything or anyone for salvation, save Jesus only. Then you will realize that God is Love to save, keep, and bless. Also, God is Light—to guide and protect through this wilderness. Lastly, at the bottom of the clock is a Fountain, and from it is springing up clear, living water to quench and satisfy the thirst of the drooping and dying. Here is a type of Him Who said, and is still saying : "If any man thirst, let him come unto Me and drink."
Connected with the Fountain of Life is the last but wonderful invitation given in the Bible to the sinner to be saved. Note the 3 Comes, with that all-embracing word Whosoever. Full, deep, rich, overflowing grace is here writ large, that none may despair of Mercy.
Grace to save the vilest, Grace to keep the weakest, Grace in plenty or poverty, Grace in trial and temptation; Grace, free, sovereign Grace, all the way from earth to heaven, till glory shall end what Grace has begun. See that no man take thy Crown.
Good Reader, Where will you spend Eternity ? Heaven or Hell ? Choose you THIS DAY whom ye will serve.


Wednesday 26 October 2022

11:47

Just as I am - Charlotte Elliott

 

Republished and Digitally restored. Private Collection © Peter N Millward - Click on picture for Prints and cards available.

An old picture, faded and forgotten from 1876, what a joy to restore! - It illustrates the text of the famous hymn "Just as I am" by Charlotte Elliott. (1789 - 1871) with scripture -"Him that cometh unto me I will in no wise cast out." John 6:37 Charlotte Elliott's background was of a wealthy evangelical family, and was highly educated and refined. Her maternal grandfather, was the Rev. Henry Venn of the famous evangelical Clapham Sect. Even with growing up with such a background...as an adult she had become a popular member of a social circle where religion was not mentioned. She was a writer of humerous verse and a gifted portrait artist. But 32 years of age her health broke down so severely, she faced a very different future. Now distant from worldly friends and influence, faced with the challenges of her health - the need of the Saviour and the Gospel came into sharp focus. During this time a Rev. Dr Cesar Malan of Geneva, came to visit her father's home, and while there Charlotte met Dr Cesar Malan, and during conversation the Dr asked her whether she was at peace with God?" The story goes she was not too pleased with this line of question and resented it. But some days later Charlotte returned to Dr Cesar Malan, and apologised, she had wanted to make her life clean first before becoming a Christian. At which Dr Malan replied "Come just as you are," and that day Charlotte committed her life to Christ. The story how Charlotte came to Christ, later resulted in this amazing Hymn being written. and the rest as one would say - is history. Translated into many languages it has gone throughout the world, and when Charlotte Elliott passed away a great many letters were found in her home, which had been sent from those who over the years had gratefully acknowledged how the words of this hymn was instrumental in their own profession of faith and coming to Christ. Her illness and physical weakness continued throughout her life, which prevented her from doing much more than stay home......but Charlotte was a prolific writer and wrote many poems and hymns....it was through her pen she was to reach the world for Christ. But it was for the hymn "Just as I am" Charlotte Elliott is remembered. Dr Billy Graham wrote that during evangelistic crusades when they called people to come forward to commit to Jesus Christ it was invariably this hymn "Just as I am" they would use since it presented " the strongest possible Biblical basis for the call of Christ" Isnt this such an amazing story how God would use Charlotte, in spite of her illness and limitations of health, to reach the world for Christ! "But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty" 1 Corinthians 1:27. Dont ever think you are too weak, frail or insignificant to be used by God....According to the Bible you are well qualified for His service! As it is written by the Apostle Paul, 2 Corinthians 12 : 9 - "And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me."


Charlotte Elliott - Colorized from a photo from book "Selections from the poems of Charlotte Elliott" 1873

* Some further thoughts, The artwork I found very fascinating, its unusual becuase I havent seen anything quite like it before, it depicts furnishings and decorations of the temple in Jeresalem. Ark of the Covenant, Menorah, the Altar of Incense, with decorations of flowers and gourds on both sides. Enclosed in all this a banner with the wonderful words of scripture John 6:37 and Charlotte's wonderful hymn. Hanging below from the banner, a row of bells and pomegranates. So much symbolism and Biblical themes here to reflect and meditate on. And to think the blood of the Lamb of God, Jesus Christ has made this all possible for us to come into His presence - Just as I am.

Monday 21 March 2022

12:22

The Divided City - W C Miles

Posters and Cards available, click image
 The Divided City - W C Miles. Republished and Digitally restored. 

A fascinating picture, full of Bible references - The title, The Divided City, not much is known or how the picture came about. But is definetly a picture to study the Bible with. The city depicted isnt named but with a river running through it could easily apply to London but a spiritual version. What is is noticable the difference between the two sides of the river with many city scenes in the picture, reflecting life, both good or bad, with warnings to avoid the bad streets and roads and encouragement to follow the narrow path called "Pilgrim's Walk" to get to Pilgrim's Walk one has to leave the bad side and its activities to cross bridges to go in the right direction. Once on the other side, a traveller will encounter various streets and roads with Christian activities/meanings, also warnings. It is to be noted and significant - There is only one entrance into "Pilgrim's Walk" and a narrow gate. Two destinies Heaven or Hell await all who travel through life in the Divided City, which path will we take?. In the Victorian era. it would definitly appeal to many Christians living in London. But indeed it could be applied to any major city too. Since the picture has no written explanation. This is just speculation, but it maybe there was a message preached about a "Divided City" at the time which inspired the picture. For those interested - I created a Video - a city tour of the Divided City and brief explanation. With music - The Windmills of your mind, as a way of introduction to the many scenes of this mysterious Victorian picture.

A picture designed by William C Miles, exact date this chromolithograph picture is not known. But was being advertised in the magazine - The Railway Signal, or Lights along the Line in 1915. Looking at the various scenes in the picture, there are no motorcars illustrated, which could mean the design was created pre motorcar era, 1880s - 1890s. Artwork often depicted motorcars when they came into use, much like trains did. If anyone has any further information about the picture, please contact me. 

Detail from picture below - A House of Prayer is featured at the end of a road with No Thoroughfare. Telegraph or telephone lines can be seen attached to the roof - Symbolising prayer. 
 
Detail from picture - Some roads lead away from Pilgrim's Walk, with scripture as a warning. At first they look as though they could be leading to the narrow way......but the scriptures help to see the side roads are where pilgrim's are in danger of wandering off. To the right what looks like a park where various people stopped travelling along Pilgrim's Walk and now occupied with other activities. . 

The Divided City - W C Miles. Republished and Digitally restored. Private Collection - Peter N Millward

W C Miles, also designed a number of evangelical pictures in a similar vein, which are perhaps more well known, like the Gospel Compass or the Up and Down Lines. 

This picture was published through  R J Masters & Co, 32, Wilton Road – Victoria Station, London. A Christmas advertisement below shows RJ Masters advertising in the Westminster & Pimlico News  November 29, 1895. 

Posters and Cards available at the link

The newspaper cutting shown is subject to non-commercial purposes, terms and conditions of the British Newspaper Archive (www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk) © THE BRITISH LIBRARY BOARD. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED













Tuesday 1 March 2022

15:26

The Second Coming of Christ - Phil Saint

The Second Coming of Jesus Christ - Phil Saint
The Second Coming of Christ

When I first saw Phil Saints picture - The Second Coming of Christ a few days ago, (See photo below) I thought how amazing even though the photo was black and white/sepia. I thought it was so remarkable - I decided to make it in colour! During these days of turmoil in the world - There is only one safe option and that is putting your faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ - He is coming again, In Glory! Are you ready? Check out the Bible - its all there to read about.

Oil painting The Second Coming of Christ, by Phil Saint. - the original is understood to be in colour, but no colour photos were available - only black and white/sepia

I have seen alot of depictions of the Return of Christ over the years - but to me this is how it should be painted!
I remember after I was converted years ago - the first picture I wanted to paint as a new Christian was the Return of Jesus Christ. Revelation 6:15-17 was a verse of scripture God used to convict me of unbelief... and the Return of Jesus Christ was very much upon my mind, but I was only a young artist then, still learning...and I struggled over a month or two trying to compose and make the picture....I gave up in the end. So I decided to concentrate on learning and studying art more. But when I saw this picture a few days ago, it was so amazing to see and how topical this subject is with all that is going on in the world today!. The late Phil Saint (1912-1993) the artist who made this amazing picture was brother of Nate Saint, (martyred in Ecuador along with four other missionaries) Phil Saint was a missionary in Argentina for many years along with his family. Phil's ministy and art has touched many lives in USA, Argentina - A pictures really does speak a thousand words and even though Phil has gone to his heavenly reward! today his art contunues to speak to lives all over the world!

Another work of art by Phil Saint can be found at the link below - Way of the Cross,  Original painted by Phil Saint.  circa 1966 - The Way of the Cross






Tuesday 11 January 2022

17:11

The Pilgrim's Journey to the Celestial City

Prints and Cards available click picture

The Pilgrim's Journey to the Celestial City.

Published by Mrs Gawin Kirkham, widow of the late secretary to the Open-Air Mission – Mr Gawin Kirkham. The picture is not so well known as the Broad and Narrow Way picture which Gawin Kirkham had preached from and had published. But was produced as a companion picture, which is stated on the print beneath the title. "A companion picture to the Broad and Narrow Way."

It is a chromolithograph print, which will mean it is somewhere late 1800s and early 1900s it was printed  But the exact date the artwork was created is unknown, but must be sometime after 1892 - the year Gawin Kirkham passed away.  

For anyone familiar with Pilgrim's Progress, it should be quite easy to follow the picture - John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress starts lower right with Christian fleeing from the city of Destruction, meeting various characters who either encourage him or try to discourage him. He reaches the Cross in repentance and seeking forgiveness from the Lord Jesus Christ, where his burden of sin falls off. He continues on his journey encountering blessings, trials and temptations, and battles too. Making friends and enemies along the way until he reaches the gates of the Celestial City in triumph through obedience and faith in Jesus Christ.  

One other version of this picture was produced with scripture texts in the old style roman numerals. (I have made an updated version at the link above with normal scripture texts for easier understanding for anyone unfamiliar with old style roman numerals. The picture contains a total of 38 scripture texts to guide one through the picture and study the Bible, excellent for anyone curious as to the meanings of various scemes in the picture.)

 

(Republished and Digital Image Restoration – © Peter N Millward, Private Collection)



 

Saturday 18 December 2021

11:16

Who is He in Yonder Stall?

 

Who is He in Yonder Stall?

A picture for Christmas and also picture puzzle - can you find where the Lion of the tribe of Judah and the Lamb that had been slain in the picture? (Answer further down page)
I was praying what picture to make for Christmas, then later the words of the Hymn "Who is He in Yonder Stall" came to me... I pondered why the Lord announced the birth of Jesus to the Shepherds...then a friend posted a photo of a stone food or water trough/manger the type that would have been used in the days of Jesus in Israel, the post explained various things about this. Which are different than the cosy wooden type of mangers popularly depicted in pictures. In Biblical times when the Temple in Jerusalem made sacrifices, priests kept sacrificial lambs in stone troughs in a blanket for protection, unblemished perfect lambs waited to be examined before sacrifice. For the Shepherds visiting Bethlehem to see what the angels announced, finding a baby wrapped in cloths lying in a "stone" trough would have been a powerful testimony, they would have understood as they were familiar with rearing sacrificial lambs. If we study scripture we see the significance of the title John the Baptist gave Jesus - “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world" John 1:29. And in the book of Revelation we see. "and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain" Revelation 5:6.
Who is He in yonder stall,
At whose feet the shepherds fall?
’Tis the Lord! oh wondrous story!
’Tis the Lord! the King of glory!
At His feet we humbly fall,
Crown Him! crown Him, Lord of all!
Who is He in deep distress,
Fasting in the wilderness?
Who is He the people bless
For His words of gentleness?
Who is He to whom they bring
All the sick and sorrowing?
Who is He that stands and weeps
At the grave where Lazarus sleeps?
Who is He the gathering throng
Greet with loud triumphant song?
Lo! at midnight, who is He
Prays in dark Gethsemane?
Who is He on yonder tree
Dies in grief and agony?
Who is He who from the grave
Comes to succor, help, and save?
Who is He who from His throne
Rules through all the worlds alone?
’Tis the Lord! oh wondrous story!
’Tis the Lord! the King of glory!
At His feet we humbly fall,
Crown Him! crown Him, Lord of all!
Words by Benjamin Russell Hanby (1833-1867)