Is It Wrong To Portray Jesus In A Dfferent Culture Since He Is A Jew?

Most cultures have portrayed Jesus in their own way such as a white Europian, African American or Hispanic, Asian, American scientist and so on. Even if you were asked to, you would wish He was from your culture, tribe or race.

Jesus can never be portrayed accurately by us since Jesus arrived before the invention of cameras. Most of us grew up seeing Jesus as a “white Jesus”, or a “White Europian” as He is usually depicted, but if the purpose of imagining Jesus as a white in the first place was so that people could relate to Him, then the Jewish people were purposely left out of relating to Him.  The one way you’ll rarely see Jesus portrayed in art, is as a Jewish, and if I were asked, I would say, this should be the only way we have to portray Him! It is possible that there are some scientific and historic paintings that could represent a Jewish Jesus but hardly do you see anyone have that image on their walls.

Therefore, if it is wrong to portray Jesus as any other than the Jew that He was, then just about every image of Jesus ever made is wrong. Also, if we have been excited making Him white for so long, then there isn’t a problem making Him any other color in which people actually come from, but just like a lot of reasonable people may disagree about portrayals of Jesus, I agree that that does not mean anything goes. For instance, the “office Jesus”, and some other “mind disturbing” ones that would cause one to say, “get that disconcerting picture of Jesus out of here”.

The period of Lent is about the sufferings of Jesus. It is to align ourselves with the suffering part of Jesus, as there are lots of parts of Jesus. Advent and Christmas are about the human nature of Jesus (The Word made Flesh and dwelt among us). Pentecost is about the Divine nature of Jesus. Lent is not about an easy going Jesus, walking around the office giving everyone high fives and shoulder rubs.

Being a “Hebrew” or “Jew” does not relate to an ethnicity with certain features (such as skin color, eye color, height or body structure and so on) therefore, Jesus could have been “a white person”, and He could have had blue or green eyes, not necessarily dark brown eyes and dark hair. There might have been a reason why the “tradition” has always given us an image of Jesus as a man with long, wavy, light brown hair and blue eyes, and a reason why these features were attributed to Him.  Those who actually saw Him preaching might have described Jesus of Nazareth in these physical forms, this description arrived at us, at least partially, and maybe with some changes in details, or they weren’t too sure.

It is discovered that people are highly connected deeply to their pictures of Jesus and how they picture Him. Therefore, this season you should picture a person who suffered terribly on your account and never complained. Suffer a little with Him.

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