If we could travel back in time to 30 A.D. and meet the Lord Jesus as He carried forth His public ministry, we might be quite surprised by what we saw. I say this because many of us are heirs to a rather filtered description of Him that is both Western and modern.
Most picture Jesus as fair-skinned and slender, with long, straight hair and a gentle beard. This physical reimagining of Him began rather early, gathered steam during the Renaissance, and has come to our day. I will not dwell here on His physical traits in this post, as I have written in detail on them elsewhere: What Did Jesus Look Like?.
As for His mannerisms, most imagine Jesus as gentle, kind, soft-spoken (except to mean people like the Pharisees), and “loving” in the modern sense. Images of him welcoming children, being the Good Shepherd, speaking of the lilies of the field, and forgiving the woman caught in adultery (but not the part when He tells her to stop sinning), predominate. Many modern people default to or strongly emphasize these images (rather than consulting the fuller text of Scripture) in interpreting Jesus. For many, the preferred images overrule the Sacred text, no matter how voluminous those balancing texts might be.
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