Contact Us

Foreign Fire

Foreign Fire

 Email

And Aaron's sons, Nadab and Abihu, each took his pan, put fire in them, and placed incense upon it, and they brought before the L‑rd foreign fire, which He had not commanded them. And fire went forth from before the L‑rd and consumed them, and they died before the L‑rd. (Leviticus 10:1-2)

A "fire of favor" came down consuming the offering on the altar on the eighth day of the inauguration of the desert sanctuary, and the people "sang glad song". In stark contrast to this joyous event, is the "unauthorized fire" of the sons of Aaron, the High Priest, who, in their spiritual frenzy, are consumed in a "counter-fire" from heaven.

In the painting, this tension of conflicting energies is reflected in the opposing colors. In contrast to striking greenish hues, the color of nature and of life, the strong reds and oranges suggest passion and life as they burn. As Nadav and Avihu offer their "strange" fire, a divine fire consumes them. The abstract suggestive figures are separate individuals, yet energetic lines pull them together; they become one with the fire rising upward as the flames dance between life and death in this continuum.

Yoram Raanan takes inspiration from living in Israel, where he can fully explore and express his Jewish consciousness. The light, the air, the spirit of the people and the land energize and inspire him. His paintings include modern Jewish expressionism with a wide range of subjects ranging from abstract to landscape, biblical and Judaic.
© Copyright, all rights reserved. If you enjoyed this article, we encourage you to distribute it further, provided that you comply with Chabad.org's copyright policy.
 Email
Join the Discussion
Sort By:
1 Comment
1000 characters remaining
Ismail Male April 17, 2015

Nice painting! I love it for its depth! Reply

Related Topics