Christian devotions in the Daily-Message

Christian devotions in the Daily-Message

True Beauty

“For He shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: He hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see Him, there is no beauty that we should desire Him. He is despised and rejected of men; a Man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from Him; He was despised, and we esteemed Him not.”

Isaiah 53:2-3
 

Physical beauty is the most highly rated trait in our culture worldwide. Even so, it is simultaneously also the most superficial and prejudiced assessment criteria. We are inclined to automatically equate beauty with purety and truth and ugliness with lies and impurity. But, this is generally not the case. Lots of things in the world only has the appearance of beauty yet when inspected up close it is found to be far from it. That which can be seen or appears to be, mostly mirrors an inacurate picture of that which is true and correct. Beauty is certainly always in the eye of the beholder, however that which matters is the love which lies within. Humans favor obvious beauty which is mostly unjust and blind. A beautiful person opens many doors based simply on their looks. When God became human, He did not choose an appealing appearance. This makes it clear what is important and what is not. Isaiah prophecied that Jesus would be despised and seen as unworthy and uninteresting. God is never concerned about outward appearances, but with what is in our hearts and with His living Word – and based upon this the Lord appeared on earth. Along with the meaning of salvation (which is most important) it becomes clear that man is in danger of measuring content, people, activities, services and experience against a person's looks and with assessing someone with double standards thereby judging accordingly. Christians are not exempt of this, which can be seen in the examples of Samuel who wanted to anoint Eliab as king because he was tall, handsome and strong. This is how he imagined a king to be.

However, God stepped in, correcting him and spoke: “But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.” (1 Samuel 16:7) In Jesus rested the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, of counsel and might, the knowledge and fear of the Lord (Isaiah 11:2). God judges not in accordance with the outward appearance or with what He hears, but HE judges in righteousness and in truth – with every person! This should also be the standards we all should strive for. John wrote “Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment” (John 7:24). We should ask ourselves whether we choose our friends, business partners (or marriage partners) only by their outward appearances, that which is appealing to us, or their speech? It is undoubtedly often difficult to always go against our natural habits, feelings or perceptions when considering the people we have to deal with in a good and fair manner. But, maybe we should start doing this? Whereas God most surely has nothing against beauty (after all God did make EVERYTHING good and beautiful in the beginning (1 Genesis 1:31). But everything is not centered on this, but rather on God's will and that which is behind it. As well as the truth, and if something is suitable and just or not. What really beautifies and changes a person outwardly is grace, forgiveness, love and acceptance. The most beautiful man who ever lived, was and is Jesus Christ – at the latest in heaven will we realize this.

(Translated by Linda Gates)

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This devotion is also available in Afrikaans: Ware Skoonheid
Zur deutschen Originalversion: Wahre Schönheit


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