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Sunday, June 14, 2009

Chapter 5: Biblical Characters Reveal God's View of Beauty...

In this chapter we looked at some characters from the Bible and how God viewed beauty in their lives. Newman gives special attention to the nature of Jesus.

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth." John 1:1, 14
We learned that this particular Scripture highlights how God feels about our bodies and the beauty of them. God created us and the bodies that we live in. By taking on the form of human flesh, God placed his blessing on our bodies. By such an action, God is demonstrating that he cares about the bodies he has gifted us with. Jesus Christ experienced life in an imperfect body, just as we are. Even with an imperfect body, Jesus showed evidence of a healthy body image.

Jesus displayed a healthy body image in the 3 important aspects already discussed:

1. Respect
Creating something gives you a great respect for it. God created our human bodies so he has respect for his creation. Jesus finds so much value in our human bodies that he came to earth and died so that our bodies could experience eternal life.

2. Care
Jesus took incredibly good care of his body. As a carpenter and lumberjack he would have developed great muscular strength. He was also aerobically fit enough to walk many miles between cities. Jesus ate a healthy, Mediterranean diet. He always ate and fed others nutritious food. His physical fitness was shown most when he survived brutal treatment and made it to the cross.

3. Perspective
Jesus wasn't the most attractive man in his time. But Jesus had the perspective of showing God's love through himself, not a perfect earthly body. People were not drawn to Jesus because of his appearance, but because of the love he showed others. Physical beauty isn't very important to God.

Think about it...
Is your beauty or someone else's beauty a problem for you?
How is your beauty affecting your relationship with God?
Why didn't God create Jesus with perfect physical characteristics?

"I think of Jesus as a short, balding, skinny, dark-eyed, dark-haired, olive-skinned man with crooked teeth and a big nose. And I totally love Him. I've never seen Jesus, but I love Him because of WHO HE IS."
(Newman 80)