“Let the Bible speak in its own way” – Seeds of Faith – February 22, 2021

One of the businesses that was hit the pandemic are the barbershops and beauty parlors. Many of us had long hairs because of this.
One question was asked: Did Jesus had a long hair? In the movies and paintings, Jesus is always depicted as having a long hair. The Bible had no record of the appearance of Jesus but according to Jewish customs and in one of the letters of Paul, we can assume that Jesus had a neatly trimmed short hair.
We can surmise from Paul’s letter in 1 Corinthians 11:14-15 that Jesus had a did nit wear his hair long — “Does not nature itself teach you that if a man wears long hair it is a disgrace for him, but if a woman has long hair, it is her glory? For her hair is given to her for a covering.” It was only a Nazarite that had a long hair. But Jesus was not a Nazarite but a Nazarene because he was from the place of Nazareth.
What then can we learn from this?
First, let us read the Bible in its own context.
This means that we have to learn the culture, history and situation of the Bible. Our worldview today is not the same during Biblical times. We have to understand the Bible in its own context so that we may truly understand its meaning.
Second, we must discern what is cultural in the Bible, and not impose it in our own culture.
For example, we wear shoes, denims and t-shirts today. During the time of Jesus they wore something else. This does not mean that we are not Biblical. Yes, we must follow the commands of God but we should read carefully the commands of Moses and other commands that pertains only to the Jews during that time. Thus, we must learn lessons out of it, but not literally follow it.
So, let us continue to study the Bible in the right way, and not impose our biases. In this way, we let the Bible convey its message the way it was intended.
May God bless us all!
Rev. Francis Neil G. Jalando-on
Director, Office of Communications
Central Philippine University
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