Jesus did not look like a bearded lady

Look at EWTN website’s picture today that has a wood carving of Jesus. It’s well done, but take away the facial hair and you might not know it’s a man. There are many of these types of depictions.

I thought that Jesus was considered ordinary looking and often indistinguishable from the other disciples. If Jesus really looked like these other depictions, why would Judas need to have pointed him out. He could have just said, “Ya can’t miss him. Go to the garden, he’ll be the dude who looks like a lady.”

So what is behind all of these effeminate depictions of Jesus?

Probably closer to what he looked like than most representations:

Victorian Romanticism. :slight_smile:

The Victorian Romanticists used to depict virtue in feminine form, so, for example, they depicted Faith, Hope, and Charity as three young women in white.

This naturally led to them depicting virtuous men (especially Jesus) as being somewhat effeminate. They meant it as a compliment; they considered womanhood to be the height of moral perfection, and manhood as being the opposite.

It’s baffling to us today, because we no longer think like that. Our own popular culture will be baffling to future generations, when they see so many women being portrayed as “sex-less” or looking like young men. :shrug:

I think it’s for aesthetics. Jesus is the incarnation of all love, nurturance, forgiveness and charity. A softer, feminine appearance gives a visual to these invisible traits more so than a more masculine one

i heard my parish preist say that Jesus could possibly look not only with an effeminate face, but very quite similarly to Mary because he doesn’t have a flesh-and-blood father where he can get facial pattern genes (or whatever you call it) from

Yes, it’s an artistic attempt to show Jesus as “meek and humble of heart”. However, I find this image beautifully shows Christ’s humility without compromising his manliness.

Similar appearance does not preclude gender differences.

No one really knows what He looks like…and I personally don’t give a flying rat’s patootie. I’m far more interested in His Message than His appearance.

Miz

From some writtings from Pontius Pilate to Tiberius Ceasar it seems Jesus was quite a beautiful man.

Other letters from those times describes Jesus as tall, comely, and very reverant, with thick chestnut coloured hair… describing him to look much like His mother.

In other words, He is described as a good looking man.

This site has several descriptions of Him from letters

thenazareneway.com/likeness_of_our_saviour.htm

I’m quite fond of how he appears on the cover of my Catholic youth Bible; very masculine, but smiling and kind.

Althought, per near any long haired and bearded image of him makes me do a double take, because my Dad looks like Jesus o.0

I love that video! :slight_smile:

I think those writings are generally considered to be Medieval creations. See the Catholic Encyclopedia entry on “Publius Lentulus.”

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Awesome! But the question wasn’t what he looks like nor was it a poll asking whether people care what he looks like. The question has to do with why are there so many humans who like portraying him almost as womanly in appearance. I think that’s an interesting question.

I thought he looked remarkably like Jim Caviezel!:eek:

Yes, it is an interesting question and one worth thinking about. And you certainly have a very good point that Jesus must have been ordinary looking [like a common Jew of His day] because Judas had to point him out to be identified. For sure, Jesus did not look anywhere like the depictions of Him we see today.

The reason why humans like portraying Jesus as womanly in appearance has to do with Satan and his controlling influence on us, human beings. Satan is doing everything in his power to keep us away from God – from knowing who He truly is so we can come to worship Him “in spirit and in truth” (John 4:24).

By depicting Jesus as a beautiful effeminate person rather than as an ordinary-looking, rugged individual [He must be because He worked as a carpenter/builder], Satan has made it more appealing for human beings to keep these supposed representations of Christ, and then readily going to the next step, which is what Satan really wants us to do – break one of God’s commandments by praying to these representations.

Imagine if our pictures of Christ look like the one Lutheranteach showed [which is a much more accurate depiction because the messianic prophecy of Isaiah 53:2 says of Him: “He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.”]. How many do you think would be willing to hang His pictures in their beautiful homes and offices, or make statues of them in their churches? And do you think anyone would kneel down and pray to such depictions of Christ?

One reason why I tend to prefer Eastern icon-style representations of Jesus to Western ones. Our Eastern religious artist brothers and sisters seem to know how to combine an aura of tenderness and gentleness with an entirely masculine appearance in their icons of Jesus.

Same arguments could be made in relation to their representations of other male saints too.

“I thought he looked remarkably like Jim Caviezel”

LOL!!! Good one Ignatius.

Even if he had been regal looking, Judas would still have had to point him out because the soldiers didn’t know who Jesus was or what he looked like. And Judas probably didn’t want to take the chance the wrong man be arrested and have to answer to the authorities. There are lots of good reasons why he had to do it personally besides Jesus being ordinary looking. I’m not saying Jesus wasn’t ordinary looking for a man of his age, times, and culture, but your premise isn’t proof he that he had to, either, if you see what I mean. Not debating here, just saying. From the Shroud image, which I believe to be authentic along with millions of others, I think we have a very good idea of his appearance. And it’s one of a strong, young man of Eastern extraction. What else could anyone expect?

The reason why humans like portraying Jesus as womanly in appearance has to do with Satan and his controlling influence on us, human beings. Satan is doing everything in his power to keep us away from God – from knowing who He truly is so we can come to worship Him “in spirit and in truth” (John 4:24).

Once again, you may be right, but medieval artists didn’t do depictions of Christ in order to make him look weak and unmanly, but rather to make him look meek and humble and approachable. Remember, there’d been a great emphasis on Christ as the Great Judge and Divine Son. They simply wanted to emphasize his humanity–as he himself described himself–“meek and humble of heart”. It’s more about symbolism of the devotional kind than wanting to make him effeminate for Satan’s purposes–an idea they would vehemently deny. There are many modern depictions of a more virile Christ because we moderns like that kind of image.

By depicting Jesus as a beautiful effeminate person rather than as an ordinary-looking, rugged individual [He must be because He worked as a carpenter/builder], Satan has made it more appealing for human beings to keep these supposed representations of Christ, and then readily going to the next step, which is what Satan really wants us to do – break one of God’s commandments by praying to these representations.

Considering you have the wrong end of the stick as to the motives of artists, I have to say this premise isn’t very convincing. I know of no one who prays to any representation of Christ, good or bad, modern or medieval. I think you’ve gone overboard here, my friend

Imagine if our pictures of Christ look like the one Lutheranteach showed [which is a much more accurate depiction because the messianic prophecy of Isaiah 53:2 says of Him: “He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.”]. How many do you think would be willing to hang His pictures in their beautiful homes and offices, or make statues of them in their churches? And do you think anyone would kneel down and pray to such depictions of Christ?

Many Bible scholars agree that the depiction in Is. 53:2 describes the “Suffering Servant of God”. So, it’s a depiction of Christ’s sufferings–the tortures he endured, not of his ordinary visage. And I do have a picture of Christ beaten, wearing the Crown of Thorns as well as crucifixes that do depict him as suffering and less than beautiful, as we humans think of beauty. But, they are beautiful because they show what love he had for us. So, you can’t say we wouldn’t hang such pictures on the wall, when millions of Catholics already have them. :wink:

I don’t rule out the possibly of ulterior motives for the effeminate depictions of Jesus, which is partly why I raised the issue.

But the notion that it has anything to do with us Catholics praying to objects is just the tiresome, age old slander.

So many people mention that they think the Shroud of Turin is authentic. I’m a bit agnostic on the Shroud and should probably learn more. I suspect that Jesus would not have had “long” hair, because it was considered a shame. But just what constituted “long” hair, and whether the Shroud reflects someone with “long” hair by the standards of the day is something I don’t know.

Trust me, no medieval artist would have had any other motive than 1) depicting Christ in conformance with standards of the day, and 2) getting paid by his patron, be it lord, bishop, or parish councils. They had no satanic motives, implicit or explicit. We moderns simply don’t have the same art sensibilities of their times. That’s all.

But the notion that it has anything to do with us Catholics praying to objects is just the tiresome, age old slander.

This is true, and quite a modern notion, as well.

So many people mention that they think the Shroud of Turin is authentic. I’m a bit agnostic on the Shroud and should probably learn more.

I had my doubts, too, but after doing some reading and seeing programs that showed how the carbon dating was done from a part of the Shroud (along the edge) that had been rewoven with cotton threads (the Shroud is linen of the type used in the Middle East), I was won over. The reweaving, which had been done to repair a part of the cloth that had been damaged in a fire, threw off the carbon dating. No one was to blame for this. Those who took the samples had no idea they were taking a “contaminated” piece to examine. I believe this accident was one of those “God-incidents” meant to prompt further examinations that proved beyond a shadow of a doubt the authenticity of the cloth’s age and origin–that of 1st century Palestine.

I suspect that Jesus would not have had “long” hair, because it was considered a shame. But just what constituted “long” hair, and whether the Shroud reflects someone with “long” hair by the standards of the day is something I don’t know.

A woman would never have cut her hair in those times, unless it had to be done for some good reason. Men, on the other hand, did cut their hair shorter than the women. That’s all Paul is referring to, not that men have to have shaved heads or crew cuts to be in conformity with God’s law.

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