This week, I saw a report on what Jesus really looked like. Forensic scientists have worked with archaeologists to try to get a better idea of what he really looked like, compared to the most famous portraits we have today.
I’m sure a lot of time and money has gone into this project when at the end of the day, the results may be just as inaccurate to what we have now because we have no drawing recorded or written description of what he actually looked like.
The question I have is, even if we could find out what he looked like, is it really that important? The problem is, if we could have a picture of the real Jesus as a baby, whose birth we celebrate this time of year, or as a 12-year-old or as an adult, there would be a tendency to worship the picture rather than the person.
What really is important is not what he looked like, but the reason he came to Earth in the first place, in other words, what he did.
So what did he do that is so important? First, he came as an example of how to please God the Father, then he taught us how to live that life in more detail and, most importantly, he gave of himself as a sacrifice for our sins. His motivation was love, and his message was that if we wanted to be his disciple, we must love.
The most awesome thing is not that Jesus wants us to figure out what he looks like, but that he has invited all of us to receive forgiveness, peace and eternal life by becoming his disciple. He reminds us of this in Revelation 3:20, where he says, “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in...”
So, this Christmas season, will you ponder on what Jesus really looked like, or will you do what’s really important and invite him into your life?