Is the Historical Jesus black or white?
Every where one turn today in christianity, one sees the image of a White God, of white angels, white apostles and white Jesus. The only personality that resembles the black man is Satan. Is this a true picture of the real historical figures?
The concern about the actual colour of Jesus of Nazareth did not really matter to biblical exegesis untill the black liberation movement exemplified in personalities like Malcolm X, Albert Cleage, James cone and the rest. For these personalities, Christianity has turned a tool of Western hegemony and it’s images of white God and his white Christ are but ample ways to psychologically portray the supremacy of the white race on the black. The black converts find themselves turning towards an identity of whiteness in prayer and psychologically he or she transmutes such idea of supremacy to any other thing white: white culture,western Education, Western conceptual schemes etc.
This idea of whiteness was the challenged by black liberation and prominent Among the black Jesus thesis advocates is Albert Cleage. For Albert cleage, christianity suffers in the hand of a perennial lye: the black Jesus. For him Jesus was Black. Albert cleage instituted the shrine of the black Madonna in which converts are to take African names after baptism and in it a theology of ancestors is propounded to replace the Christian eschatological saints. There still arguments on the correctness or wrongness of the black Jesus thesis.
However, available facts shows that although Jesus may not have been black, he was not a white Caucasian with black long blond hair. If Jesus of Nazareth was anything close to white, he would looked like an iraqi jew.
James Warden carried out a extensive study on the black Jesus thesis in which he proved that Jesus was a mixed breed of Jewish and Black parent. Hence, he would look like someone like Obama or trevor. Warden claimed that Black people like Bathsheba were found within the lineage of Jesus as presented in Matthew. Solomon birthed by Bathsheba and David also developed a penchant for black women as he attested in the song of solomon. In fact, Solomon dedicated that entire song to an unnamed black woman from Ethiopia. The influx of people from Ethiopia and the diplomatic relations between Ethiopia and israel from time immemorial added strength to the fact that Israel was an heterogenous community of blacks and whites. And we found instances of marriages between these groups. There theories stating that Moses was an example of such mixed breed in Egypt. Reason he was not really distinguishable in pharaoh’s palace as a Jew. He looks somewhat different.
The question of the colour of Jesus is a them on which more inks will still be poured. For while black theologians are bent on proving it, the historical quest for Jesus life has experienced new entries on how the Jew lived with theories suggesting to the contrary. What we must state here is that, the picture flying around today is not that of Jesus of Nazareth. That is Jim Caviesel or constantine’s picture of him painted when Christianity became the official religion of the Roman empire. The looks of Jesus is still a subject of much controversy.