There was no beauty in the outward appearance of the Lord Jesus. Though He is “the brightness of God’s glory,” "He made Himself of no reputation."
Mary, His mother, and Joseph, His legal father, were poor. There was nothing about His parents “that we should desire him.” “Though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might be made rich” (2 Corinthians 8:9).
He was a carpenter. His trade was the work of servants. To the eye of natural man, there is no beauty in a servant. “Who being in the form of God...took upon Him the form of a servant” (Philippians 2:6-7). As a servant serves his master, He served His Father. As a servant serves his master’s guests, He served His Father’s people. But unlike a servant who serves out of constraint, His service was pure love. Unlike a servant who takes his liberty when freed, He refused to leave His Father and His people. but gave Himself to God for them, and reigns and serves to save them to the uttermost (Exodus 21:2-6; Romans 5:10; Hebrews 7:25).
He was from Nazareth, a town in Galilee, the place of Gentiles. Everyone thought that no good could come from Nazareth. “Can there any good thing come out of Nazareth?” (John 1:46). There was no beauty in the town where He came from.
Because He told the truth, said He was from God, that He was the Son of God, that He did the will of God, that He was one with His Father, many hated Him (John 8:29,55; 10:30,36). His words discovered no beauty to these.
Many more hated Him because He exposed their good works as evil (John 7:7); called evil what men call good; lifted the facade of man’s outward show; revealed men for what they are: living to please others rather than God only; doing all to convince themselves that they are good enough for God to accept them (John 5:44). Men, according to Christ, trust their own goodness and refuse to trust Him who alone is good (Luke 18:9,19). He said that what most pleases men is disgusting to God (Luke 16:15). If we think wrong, we are wrong; God sees our heart. Christ has no beauty to natural man, because natural man sees his own beauty, and therefore cannot see the only righteousness there is: Christ’s.
God hid the beauty of the King of Glory. He hid the beauty of the Son of God in the form of a servant, who appeared in the likeness of sinful flesh (Romans 8:3). He was despised because He not only talked to sinners, dined with sinners, lived with sinners, loved sinners, but because He looked like a sinner. And there is nothing attractive in that, except to sinners.
But He was especially despised when He was crucified on the cross. Whoever hangs on a cross is cursed of God (Galatians 3:13). When Jesus hung on the cross, soldiers exercised power over Him, religious rulers were given power over Him, governors imagined power over Him, devils seemed to have power over Him. All thought they had power over Him. He suffered in weakness. He died in humiliation. What beauty is there in that? He died without a word in His own defense, as a lamb led to the slaughter. He owned the blame for which He was accused.
But to God’s people, there is nothing more beautiful than what Jesus did in His humiliation (Galatians 6:14-16). There is nothing more beautiful to God’s people than that Jesus gave Himself in weakness to defeat the strength of their sin, their flesh, the world, death and the devil. The thief on the cross owned His beauty: “Lord, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” Thomas also saw His beauty. When he saw the place in His hands where the nails had been driven through, and the wound in His side where the spear had been thrust, he cried, “Ho Kurious mu! Ho Theos mu!” -- “The Lord of me! The God of me!” (John 20:28).
His beauty was His sinless life. His beauty was His obedient death. His beauty is His love to His Father. His beauty is His love for His people. His beauty is that He set aside His all for all that were His. His was the only truly selfless love. He loved me and gave Himself for me! And, Oh, He is beautiful in His glory! His glory is brighter than the stars and the sun, brighter than the sons of the morning, brighter than the glory of angels. His glory is the glory of God. He Himself is “brightness of God’s glory” (Hebrews 1:3).
The beauty of the Lord Jesus Christ is hidden from the eye of natural man. But it is revealed to chosen, redeemed sinners by sovereign, omnipotent grace. Christ's beauty is beauty that only faith can love. Lord! Give me such a sight of my precious Redeemer! Cause me to join your Spirit and Church and say from my heart, "Thou art fairer than the children of men: grace is poured into thy lips: therefore God hath blessed thee for ever" (Psalm 45:2). "My beloved is white and ruddy, the chiefest among ten thousand" (Song 5:10).