Who has believed our message of salvation? And to whom has the arm and infinite power of the Lord been revealed? For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground; He has no stately form or majestic splendor that we would look at Him, or appearance that we would be attracted to Him.
Before salvation, I was never interested in any film depictions of Jesus Christ. After salvation, I watched every old or new movie I could find about him. One of the people who initially invited me to church and helped me begin this great journey would lament about the same thing in the depictions of Jesus that she saw in film. She could not understand why He was illustrated as a man with any physical allure. Whether it was piercing blue eyes, chiseled features or perfectly waving hair, some element of physical beauty was exhibited by each one. While I did not understand her concern at the time, I know now why she was so bothered. Jesus the physical man carried nothing that would draw someone to him other than the presence and manifestation of God’s Holy Spirit in and through him.
If we think that Jesus is royalty, the son of a king, a prince and a king himself, we might expect that He was robed in some appearance of glory. We might think that it would have been obvious by looking at him that He was royalty, but scripture tells us something much different. I believe there is a very critical reason why Jesus did not appear with the pomp and circumstance we would expect. The Son carried no reason for any man to glorify him because it was for the Father to receive the glory. There could be no evident reason available for someone to have followed Jesus simply because of him alone. It was not for him to draw people by charm or whit or handsomeness. Those who followed him did so because of the value He carried, and his physical appearance was not part of that package. It speaks volumes about that which we are to seek in our Savior and see in ourselves.
Looking at Jesus in proper historical context, He likely would have appeared to us as someone not so well put together with dusty feet and dirty hands. He was no one of worldly status or wealth that He would have been bathed in fine fragrance or adorned in brilliant linen and jewelry. No one would have had any reason to follow him based on his physical appearance, and some actually might have kept themselves from him because of this. He did not look like the king they might have expected, and it is important for us to recognize that. The value He carried rested not in outward appearances, and that is a lesson we can learn from daily. Father, thank You that the beauty in your Son comes not from the exterior but from the interior, and help us to recognize the same in ourselves and each other.