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The Historical Jesus A forum to discuss the historical Christ.

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  #1  
Old 14th January 2012, 11:00 AM

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What did Jesus look like?

Today I learned that apparently every race seems to imagine him as a member of said race. For example we often tend to imagine him as white as for chinese christians imagine him as a chinese and africans as a black. In isahia 53:2 it also says he'd be "no beauty that we should desire him".
what do you think he looked like?

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  #2  
Old 17th January 2012, 02:54 PM
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Try googling the "Shroud of Turin". I think thatīs the quickest and most useful answer to your question.
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Old 27th February 2012, 10:50 PM
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If you Google historical Jesus, one of the most frequent image hits is this:



This seems consistent with the fact that Jesus was a first century Jew from Galilee. The old cartoons from our childhood do us a disservice when they portray Jesus as this Swedish guy with blow-dried hair and a blue beauty pageant sash. I think the most shocking thing for Western Christians to grasp is that Jesus, in all likelihood, looked very similar to many of the people who today we view as our "enemies".
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Old 28th February 2012, 11:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Bourne View Post
If you Google historical Jesus, one of the most frequent image hits is this:



This seems consistent with the fact that Jesus was a first century Jew from Galilee. The old cartoons from our childhood do us a disservice when they portray Jesus as this Swedish guy with blow-dried hair and a blue beauty pageant sash. I think the most shocking thing for Western Christians to grasp is that Jesus, in all likelihood, looked very similar to many of the people who today we view as our "enemies".


This image just doesnīt do it for me! Iīm not referring to the racial aspects of Christīs face, but to the stupid expression of this image. My God is not an air-head! I cannot conceive of a christian believing this face is anything like that of Christīs.

How about this? http://www.theworkofgod.org/shroud.htm
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  #5  
Old 28th February 2012, 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Christopher Fleming



This image just doesnīt do it for me! Iīm not referring to the racial aspects of Christīs face, but to the stupid expression of this image. My God is not an air-head! I cannot conceive of a christian believing this face is anything like that of Christīs.

How about this? http://www.theworkofgod.org/shroud.htm
From what I understand this is the forensic reconstruction of a first century Jewish man from Galilee, so they're not saying this is what Jesus looked like, but it's in the ballpark more or less. It's definitely more accurate than what those Sunday school felt boards told us as kids.
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One equal temper of heroic hearts,
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-Tennyson
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  #6  
Old 29th February 2012, 04:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Bourne View Post
From what I understand this is the forensic reconstruction of a first century Jewish man from Galilee, so they're not saying this is what Jesus looked like, but it's in the ballpark more or less. It's definitely more accurate than what those Sunday school felt boards told us as kids.
I donīt know what you were told in Sunday school.

However, what I do know is that the face on the shroud of Turin is startlingly like the icons that you can see from the Middle Ages around the world. I also know that this face inspires devotion, whether or not you believe it really is the face of Christ.
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Old 13th March 2012, 01:43 PM
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He was probably a wily-haired, brown-eyed, short Middle Eastern man.

He was certainly not white, black or asian.
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Old 13th March 2012, 01:48 PM
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He would most likely have been olive skinned like those who are from the Middle Eastern region. Also, because he followed the mosaic law, he had short cropped hair, not long like many people have depicted him with.
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Old 21st March 2012, 11:17 PM
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That is the problem the Church face today. Each Church portrays Jesus as their own race or fit their beliefs. We have over thousands of Jesus' today. Mormon Jesus, Jehovah Witnesses' Jesus, Baptist Jesus, Pentecostal Jesus, White Jesus, Black Jesus, Hispanic Jesus, Asian Jesus, Hippie Jesus to list a few. I believe there is no reason why we should trouble ourselves over what Jesus truly looked like but rather come to agree that He is our Lord and Savior and died on the cross and as for what Jesus truly looked like??? We won't know till we go to heaven.
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Old 29th March 2012, 11:14 PM
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To know exactly what Jesus looked like (or now looks like) is an impossibility. If the Shroud of Turin is a legitimate relic, then that would let us know. We always have to deal with the possibility that it's not, though, and if it's not, then all we can do is go off of forensic reconstructions like the one posted earlier. Jesus was middle eastern, so it's easy to realize that He would have had a dark, olive-complexion and brown to black hair. Pretty much the only Biblical description we have is that He had a beard. The length of His hair is difficult to know, since He could have either followed typical Jewish hair length patterns (ie., cropped fairly short, although not as short as that of the Romans) or He could have allowed His hair to grow like those who took a nazarite vow or who voluntarily lived under unusual circumstance, like the desert ascetics. It's hard to say either way, although if the shroud of Turin is legitimate (which there are both reasons to believe that it is and that it isn't), the latter option would be the most likely, at least for part of His earthly life.

What's important about Jesus' appearance is that it can serve to remind us that those who are physically unlike ourselves are just as human as those who have the same amount of melanin as we do, whatever ethnicity we happen to belong to. Jesus, being a middle eastern first century Jew, was able to represent all of humanity from Adam to the end of time (whenever that may be and wherever people are living by then). Clearly, there's not that much difference between us all.
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