Monday, December 10, 2007

New pictures of the Nativity

Latest picture set to be added to the 'Bible picture website' is 'Part one of the Nativity'. This picture set is in the new style and contains seven pictures that tell the story from the annunciation to the dedication of Jesus in the temple.

I will be adding some brief notes on this latest picture set shortly, (check back in a few days!) In the meantime, if you haven't already read it, check out the 'Nazareth or Egypt?' post, (link below).
'Part two of the Nativity' will be ready in the next week or so, and deals with the visit of the wise men.
This latest set takes our total Bible picture count to 702!

Related posts:
Nativity (Part two)
Nazareth or Egypt?
Pictures of the Nativity
Drawing Angels!


my first blog said...

How do we know what Jesus looked like?

Paul Green said...

We don't is the simple answer. We don't even know if he had short hair or long hair, a full beard or a close cropped beard (assuming he had a beard). We have no knowledge of his height, weight or build. In short we know nothing of his physical appearance. We can only assume Jesus dressed in the preferred attire of the period and conformed to the hairstyle of an average Jew. But we don't know with any certainty.

Bible artist said...

I agree!

Nathan P. Daniel said...

Well, you definitely can’t draw a picture of someone and say, “that’s Him, for sure,” but you can use common sense and Scripture to give you guidelines as to His appearance.

For one thing, we know for sure He was a middle-eastern man, so that's one thing. Other things from Scripture are:

Is. 53:2 - For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot, And like a root out of parched ground; He has no stately form or majesty That we should look upon Him, Nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him.

Le 19:27 - You shall not round off the side-growth of your heads nor harm the edges of your beard.

Le 21:5 - They shall not make any baldness on their heads, nor shave off the edges of their beards, nor make any cuts in their flesh.

I’m pretty certain that given the culture, Jesus had a beard. I also think somewhere in the Gospels it mentions the soldiers ripping out His beard in the scourging, but I couldn’t find that passage in my brief search. Isaiah seems to indicate that he was a pretty plain-looking person—-not handsome or distinguished-looking. He probably looked average and ordinary; I wouldn't make Him look ugly though either--I don’t recall any Scripture where the multitudes gathered around Him and said “whoa, how ugly!”

As far as hairstyling, I figure looking to the Law for guidelines is a good idea. Since Christ had not died on the cross prior to the time of His ministry, the Law was still in effect, and it would be safe to assume that He followed that with His hair and other aspects of His life, as Mary and Joseph strictly adhered to it in His youth.

As far as artistic issues are concerned, I would make him look just unique enough to recognize that it’s Jesus instead of Peter or John or some random Jew, yet try hard to stay away from that distinguished Italian Jesus in a painting we’ve all probably seen by now.

Well, that's my 2 cents for whatever its worth.

Bible artist said...

Thanks for the comments jumbo. You might be interested in the post 'What did Jesus look like?' that appeared on the blog a few months back. You can view it here:
There were some interesting comments on it too.

We have also discussed the side locks of hair and the prayer shawl in some detail in other posts too. It would be worth you checking out the 'archives' list.

Paul Green said...

I have never seen any artist (or film) representation of Jesus with the traditional side locks of hair. Is this because Westerners don't like to be reminded that Jesus was a Jew? It is amazing how the Christian church, art and film has almost turned Jesus into a Gentile through the centuries. The image of Jesus we have been presented with is definitely a romanticized fiction and says as much about Western prejudice toward Jews as anything else.
On another point raised by Is. 53:2
As the Jews are still looking toward their Messiah I assume this description points to a future event for them and not to Jesus Christ. Christian Jews will of course see Jesus in this commentary.

Paul Green said...

“I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting.”
• Isaiah 50:6 KJV

The Isaiah commentary references facial hair jumbo. Some translations use the word "beard" instead of "hair".
There is no reference to the Romans plucking facial hair from Jesus in the gospels which could be an indication he didn't have a beard to pluck. Plucking facial hair was a grave insult and it seems strange that the Romans wouldn't do this to mock Jesus or that one of the gospels wouldn't include a reference to it if it had happened.