Bruce Collins, Evangelist

The personal website of Bruce Collins

Beauty is only skin Deep!

"Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty; You corrupted your wisdom by reason of your splendor. I cast you to the ground; I put you before kings, That they may see you. (Ezekiel 28:17 NASB) 

The Allegory

This section of Ezekiel is describing the King of Tyre, but it seems to allegorically describe Satan.  The King of Tyre did not exist when Eden was the garden of God.  But Satan did.  You will notice that he was perfect in beauty and was the anointed cherub that covers (or likely protects).  He may have been the Lord’s guardian angel.  This section is poetic, and it is difficult to make clear cut doctrine from symbolic language.  However, pure and simply, Satan was created perfect and beautiful, but iniquity was found in him.  I personally think he was the Lord’s chief of staff, but he led a rebellion to become president.  He lost, but because of his beauty, he is still leading people astray. 

Beauty can be deceitful.  People in the Bible who were beautiful did not always fare well.  Absalom was a man of beauty who knew how to flatter people. He was able to get them to follow him as he tried to destroy His own father.  His end was tragic.  His own father wailed at his death.  King David no doubt realized that even though Absalom was born into a royal family, he had never trusted the Lord.  Instead he trusted in his beauty and charismatic personality.  

Queen Vashti in the book of Esther was beautiful and she ended up losing her position as Queen.  Samson was apparently beautiful, and he ended up committing suicide.  Saul was a man who stood head and shoulders above the people but if he was a “saved” man (which I think he was), he certainly was a carnal man who ended badly.  

We think of Satan as a red or green demon with a forked tail and a pitchfork in his hand. This too is deceitful because while he is sometimes presents himself as a roaring lion, but more often he is very attractive and cunning and knows just how to deceive us. 

The Contrast

In Isaiah 53:2 we read, “For He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant, And as a root out of dry ground. He has no form or comeliness; And when we see Him, there is no beauty that we should desire Him.”  This, of course, is speaking prophetically of the Lord.  When he presented himself to the nation of Israel, they didn’t see a beautiful man.  Instead, they saw one who came from the despised city of Nazareth.  They didn’t see regal bearing and a regal lineage (though He had both).  They just saw one who was an imposter.  They should have studied their own Scriptures and they should have spent time with the Lord so that they could have gotten to know Him (like Nicodemus did).  They would have found Him gracious and merciful.  They would have found one who was forgiving.  They would have found someone who always was honest and told the truth.  But because he didn’t look like a king, and because He didn’t bear arms, they rejected him.  He had no beauty that they should desire Him. 

What about us?

We all want to be attractive to others.  We diet, we buy beauty products, we try to adhere to the latest fashion trends.  But beauty is only skin deep.  Man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.  (See 1 Samuel 16:7).  We often miss out on great friendships because some people don’t meet our expectations. They don’t fit in our “group.”  Some churches indirectly discriminate against people that aren’t “like them.”     

Many a marriage has failed because the partners were only attracted to the physical beauty of their spouse and they found out that underneath that physical beauty was a very deceitful heart.  

But what does the Lord see?  I am glad that he doesn’t require us to be beautiful before he accepts us.  He sees us warts and all and still we read that God “so loved” the world that He gave His unique Son, that whoever believes in Him has everlasting or eternal life.  Then He clothes us in the righteousness of Christ; and because we are “in Christ,” all God sees is the beauty of His son. 

Yes, beauty can be very deceitful.  It can be used to manipulate others.  But our Lord is not like that.  He accepts us and saves us and changes us into a trophy of His grace.  I’m glad I have been attracted to the Lord.  I hope you have been as well.  I pray that the Lord will give discernment when I am tempted to follow the beautiful charismatic but evil leaders that are so popular in the world today. 

Bruce Collins 

Meditation for the week February 10, 2018 

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