DOU, Gerrit
(b. 1613, Leiden, d. 1675, Leiden)

Old Woman Reading a Bible (detail)

c. 1630
Oil on wood
Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

The woman is reading about the entry of Jesus into Jericho, an episode from St Luke's Gospel. The illustration shows the tax-collector Simon, who climbed into a tree to observe the event. Jesus, who is shown looking up at him, went to the man's house despite his disciples' objections to his visiting a tax-collector, for the profession was considered corrupt. To Protestants, the story proved that sinners are saved by faith.