The image of Jesus Christ as most people recognize it entails a tall bearded man with long hair who frequently liked to adorn sandals. If a present day Judas Iscariot was to describe him to Roman soldiers they’d be interrogating every hacky-sack group hanging around on a college quad playing acoustic guitar. Since there was no Instagram 2000 years ago, there is no definitive pictures of Jesus. In fact, he was never described in the New Testament and there is no body to examine to tell exactly what Jesus looked like.
Pictures of Jesus as a Baby
Many people are familiar with the images of Jesus as a baby. He is generally shown cradled in his mother’s arms in the famous manger scene with hay, animals, and possibly the Three Wise Men surrounding him. Based on what culture depicts these pictures of Jesus, his ethnicity changes. The most common depicted race of Jesus is Caucasian but in other parts of the world he is shown as black, Hispanic, or Arabic. Many people believe he was black.
This doesn’t refer to Jesus wearing a cowboy hat and boot spurs yet the assumption that he is a tall, lean, carpenter, with flowing long hair, a full beard, and light colored eyes. Even though this is the most common of the pictures of him, if that depiction were true he would’ve looked vastly different from other people in the region at that time. There is no writing in the bible that Jesus’ look was special or unique and the Gospel of Matthew states that Judas had to point out Jesus when he was arrested because he couldn’t be deciphered from the Disciples.
Jesus’ Image Reconstructed With Technology
With the advances of forensic technology, it was only a matter of time before scientists aimed at using their research to get consensus images of Jesus. In 2001 scientists used first century Jewish skulls in order to construct Jesus using forensic anthropology. Their results yielded images of Jesus with a broader face, larger nose, darker skin, short curly hair and a close cropped beard. While Jesus’ long hair had been one of his defining traits, in the first Epistle of Corinthians Paul the Apostle stated it was disgraceful for a man to have long hair and he wouldn’t have said that of Christ. It should be noted that this forensic study was not an accurate depiction of the actual Jesus, just a general characteristic outline of what he might look like.
Jesus Appears To People
One way that the pictures of Jesus have become commonly accepted in society is because of the reports of Jesus miraculously appearing to people all through history. For example, people may hallucinate and see Jesus or Virgin Mary in their minds. In the year 525 the mandylion image was created when Jesus washed his face with water and the imprint was left in the cloth that he dried off with. Another famous image of Jesus occurred when an amateur photographer took a picture of the Shroud of Turin in 1898 and when developing the negatives the Holy Face of Jesus appeared. Saints Faustina Kowalska have also reported being shown a miraculous image when Jesus appeared to her and asked her to paint what she saw. Until Jesus descends on Earth again, we may never know what the man actually looked like. For now, we’ll have to trust the images that have been presented to us throughout history and instead focus on His message rather than His looks. For the time being, keep looking for pictures of Jesus appearing as stains on a shirt or in the shape of a potato chip because eBay needs saving.