The Faceless Jesus

I’ve always wondered what Jesus looked like. Fiction novels always described their characters. It helps in visualisation and delving into the story.

Was Jesus tall, dark, handsome? Or short, bald, ugly? Well, according to Hollywood movies such as “The Passion of Christ” or “Son of God”, Jesus was a dashing American guy with flowing dark hair. We are also informed through a myriad of Jesus paintings and sculptures. One of the most famous painting being Warner Sallmon’s “Head of Christ”:

Image result for head of christ sallman

Recently, some scientists have tried to recreate a possible portrait of Jesus based on Jewish skulls from that time. Check it out:

Retired medical artist Richard Neave has recreated the face of Jesus (pictured), using forensic techniques. The portrait shows the Son of God with a wide face, hazel eyes, a bushy beard and short curly hair, as well as a tanned complexion. This is in contrast to the typical blonde and blue-eyed images seen in the West

That’s just a best guess. But little in the Bible indicates His appearance other than “he had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.” (Isa 53:2)

Isn’t that peculiar? Why wasn’t Jesus’ appearance described?

A possible reason could be found in the Ten Commandments:

You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below.

Exodus 20:4

Maybe God didn’t want Jesus to be made into an image to be worshipped by men. Would an image of Jesus be transforming God who is infinite into finite object? That’s the problem with idols. Idols are not God because God cannot be captured or represented by any earthly ways.

That’s how we should view God – infinite and beyond our human imaginations. Just as no words can properly describe God, no painting or image can properly describe God fully without misrepresenting Him.


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