Re: ‘The race of Jesus: Unknown, yet powerful’ by Jesse Washington, SDN Dec. 28
“Multitudes look to him each day…yet nobody really knows the face of Jesus…there are no references to Jesus’ earthly appearance in the Bible…I find it fascinating that what people really want to know [is] what race was Jesus.”
During this 2013 holiday season, from Black Friday through BCS bowl-a-mania, Christ is cast in the image of a white Jesus or liberated into the historical milieu of a 2,000-year-old Palestinian. Yet those determined to relegate the Messiah’s identity to race miss the whole point. From the beginning God has included both Jew and Gentile into His family for good reason. He is not a racist but the Creator of all humanity which includes many shades of color.
American society is so “hell-bent” on making Christ an extension of our political correctness it tries to downplay Christ’s divinity for the sake of His humanity. Like it or not, the great church councils of the 3rd and 4th centuries set forth Christ’s identity as “homo-ousion in hypostasis” which meant of the same substance as God while being fully human, fully divine. This is the truth concerning Jesus’ identity. It has nothing to do with race but everything to do with relationship—between God and us through Christ.
Still God gives a DVD of Christ’s race in Isaiah 53: “[Christ] has no royal, kingly pomp form or comeliness that we should look at Him and no beauty that we should desire Him.” (Isaiah 53) Now to the reason for the season: “He was despised and rejected and forsaken by men, a Man of sorrows and pains, and acquainted with grief and sickness…He was despised and has borne our grief. He was wounded for our transgressions, bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon Him, and with His stripes we are healed and made whole.” (Isaiah 53:3-5).The historical Jesus is impossible to separate from the Savior of the world no matter what race He was. Christ transcends all races by providing a way out of sin. If you want a clear and correct picture of the historical Jesus it won’t come by playing the race card. It must come from inside your heart or as St. Paul said, “Christ in you the hope of glory.” (Colossians 1:27)