And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into His likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. –2 Corinthians 3:18
What does Jesus really look like? Artists throughout the centuries have painted various portraits of Jesus, often applying their own ethnic and cultural characteristics to their portrayals. Movies have variously portrayed Jesus from handsome, strong, and confident to wimpy and weak. The Old Testament prophet Isaiah prophesied regarding Jesus’ physical characteristics writing, “He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.” (Isaiah 53:2)
In the end, we have no literary or artistic sources that can authoritatively convey what Jesus actually looks like. I would suggest, that more importantly, today in a very practical sense, Jesus looks like His followers.
The Scriptures declare that the Church is Christ’s Body and each believer is a part. Together, we serve as the hands and feet of Jesus in the world. By our actions and words we represent Jesus to others. I know that sometimes I waver under the load of responsibility that this reality puts on my shoulders. I tend to cringe a bit when I think of the times that I have not done a very good job of representing Jesus before others. Still, despite our weaknesses and flaws, we have the assurance that the Holy Spirit works within us to empower and equip us to serve others in Jesus’ name.
So, what does Jesus look like? One day, everyone will know for sure when we stand before Him. Until then, the best answer I can give is that to the world, Jesus looks a lot like us.
1. What difference does knowing that you represent Jesus make in your life on a daily basis? What difference should it make?
2. What issues or character traits in your life hinder you from becoming more like Jesus?