Last Updated on September 9, 2023 by Reiner Chase
There is no historical evidence describing Jesus’ physical appearance, including his height or eye color. Attempts to reconstruct his face are speculative and vary widely. His appearance remains a matter of faith, not factual documentation.
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Real Face of Jesus
The enlightening figure of Jesus Christ has fascinated scholars, believers, historians, and artists for centuries. What was the real face of Jesus like? No one truly knows, but various sources of evidence including historical accounts, anthropological findings, and artistic impressions all provide different perspectives on what Jesus may have looked like.
1. Historical Understandings
Historical accounts from the time of Jesus do not provide any specific details regarding his physical appearance.
- The Bible: It notes many of Jesus’ teachings and actions but does not describe his facial features.
- Roman and Jewish historical sources: Some accounts, like those from contemporary sources such as Flavius Josephus and Tacitus, provide little insight into his appearance.
2. Anthropological Evidence
Advanced technologies and anthropological studies provide a scientific perspective into the real face of Jesus.
- Forensic Anthropology: Using archeological findings from the time of Jesus, British scientists generated a model of Jesus’ face. It suggests that Jesus likely had dark skin, brown eyes, and shorter, curly hair.
- Shroud of Turin: Although highly disputed, this relic allegedly the burial cloth of Jesus bears a man’s image. Some researchers believe it can offer clues about his facial features.
3. Artistic Impressions
Historically, artistic portrayals of Jesus often reflect the cultural and societal contexts of the artists.
- Early Christian Art: Early artworks from Coptic and Byzantine traditions present Jesus with a youthful appearance, often beardless and with short hair.
- Renaissance Presentations: Artists during the Italian Renaissance, such as Leonardo Da Vinci and Michelangelo, portrayed Jesus as a Caucasian man, often with long, flowing hair, a direct reflection of European norms.
4. Modern Portrayals
Modern representations vary greatly, reflecting society’s changing perceptions and awareness.
- Film and Media: Contemporary interpretations in movies, such as “The Passion of the Christ,” often present a Caucasian and long-haired Jesus, though some diversification has begun.
- Diverse Depictions: More recent portrayals aim to challenge historical inaccuracies, presenting Jesus as a man of color to reflect his Middle Eastern origins.
While it is fascinating to explore these diverse sources, they ultimately remind us that the real face of Jesus is beyond literal appearances. His message of love, forgiveness, and compassion transcends physical characteristics and remains paramount in understanding his legacy.
How Tall Was Jesus?
Around 166cm (5ft, 5 inches)
It is worth mentioning that the height above is a scientific estimation and does not come from the Bible. It was the average height of skeletal remains of men during his time. The Bible, however, is clear with the details of other people:
Zacchaeus: short and could not see over the crowd.
Saul: a head taller than any other Israelite at the time of his coronation.
Goliath: stood nine feet, translating from the Biblical six cubits and a span tall.
Jesus was not a towering figure; neither was he a man of short stature.
Jesus Eye Color?
Jesus may have had brown eyes, which was a typical thing among Judeans and Egyptians when he was alive. So in the 2004 film, The Passion of Christ, the actor’s eyes are changed digitally from blue to brown to conform to that scientific assumption.
But that was Jesus as a man.
As a god, the Bible says that his eyes were like flames of fire, a yellowish-orange color. But, this was John’s vision, which doesn’t pin down Jesus’ exact look.
Where Does The Bible Say That Jesus Was Unattractive?
Isaiah 53:2, but they are wrong.
Many people carry around that verse, calling it a description of how Jesus looked:
‘He (Jesus) had no beauty or majesty that attracts us to him.’
From that verse, Isaiah seems to call Jesus ‘a person without beauty. So, many point to it and say that Jesus was ugly.
But was he?
If you study the context of the verse, you’ll know that Isaiah was not talking about Jesus’ face, but his simplicity. Being the son of a carpenter, he had nothing attractive. The overall message of that portion is the suffering mission of the man. Isaiah, as an oracle, was merely communicating what God told him.
Also, it would have been difficult to describe a man whom he’d never seen. Jesus came 700 years later, and true to Isaiah’s word, he was not ‘attractive.’ That’s why the high-priests sort to kill him; he didn’t bear the majesty of their expected messiah.
So, the verse has nothing to do with the face, eyes, hair, and skin color of the man Jesus.
Why Is Jesus The Perfect Man?
Many people, predominantly Christians, say that Jesus was perfect because he made no mistakes. They claim he defeated sin and gave the best example of how any person should live.
Also, he spoke the truth throughout his life. History lacks any record of a man whose words touched and stung hearts without bias.
If you pay attention to his looks, however, he wasn’t the perfect man. The Bible has referred to men like Daniel, David, Solomon, Absalom, and Saul as good-looking, something it has not done for Jesus. Still, he has had the most influence, opening the world to a religion of over 2.5 billion to date.
And there you have it! Jesus was relatively handsome, but the Bible says nothing about it. His true face is also debatable, but the images in this post should give you a hint of how he looked. Since Jesus ascended into heaven, there was no physical body left on earth to study.