Like One Whom Men Hide Their Faces.

One of the prayers I prayed years ago was, “Father, I want to write words that cause people to weep, scream, yell, laugh, shout, leap with joy, and feel all the emotions that numb people who have hardened their hearts through grief and tragedy no longer feel.”

Have you ever felt numb? I have.

To write pungent or joyfully stimulating words, one must experience many things and be willing to discuss them with others. Vulnerability is serious business. 

 I know a man named Jesus/Yeshua who had no makeup artist, no clothing designer, no cue cards, no videos, podcasts, or books. He was The Book. He did not ask anyone to click on a bell for updates or beg for followers.

“From that time on, many of His disciples turned back and no longer walked with Him. So Jesus asked the Twelve, “Do you want to leave too?” (John 6:66-67).

Our Messiah was not trying to shmoos up to the leadership. He wasn’t even trying to shmoos up to his own Talmidim/disciples. He corrected, rebuked, and allowed peculiar women to anoint Him with aromatic oils. He ate with tax collectors and sinners. 


He did not fit in. 

He was despised.

The word despised means to feel contempt or a deep repugnance for someone.

Erase what you have conjured in your head via paintings, movies, and series concerning the Messiah, and read carefully who he was for the first time–all over again. 

Much of the leadership did not want anything to do with the Messiah, and this Yeshua had a way of taking the most esteemed stories from their Talmud and turning the tables on them to the point that anger flashed in their eyes, and they picked up stones to stone him. He had made them the villain in the parables. Yes, they were the ones who crossed the street when the Samaritan man, Muslim man, African man, or rich white man lay beaten and bloody on the road. They were the ones who allowed beggars to lay at their gates and eat crumbs while they walked by in priestly garments. Often, they were the main characters in our Savior’s stories, and they felt the sword cut both ways. Instead of being humbled and repenting, they wanted to kill him, the Savior of the world, the Anointed One, the Messiah. 

And we are told to follow Him and become like Him, but isn’t there a cost to authenticity and truth? 

He had no stately form or majesty to attract us,

no beauty that we should desire Him.

He was despised and rejected by men,

a man of sorrows acquainted with grief.

Like one from whom men hide their faces,

He was despised, and we esteemed Him not.

Isaiah 53:2-3.

Like One Whom Men Hide Their Faces. . .

Are you despised? Rejected? A person with much sorrow? 

You’re in good company!

Gift packaging can be designer paper and ribbons, golden sparkles, and bows, but if what’s inside is a piece of moldy cheese, the gift wrap has no worth. The titles, followers, man’s esteem, bowties, and lipsticked smiles mean nothing if the heart behind the message has a false humility, illusory self-worth, and a false identity. Then it’s all missing truth. 

Today authenticity is a lovely word we parade around. But none of us are authentic all the time and no one is perfect. And behind closed doors, the very ones we might hold in higher esteem are people who also cry, get angry, drop a curse when stubbing their toes, need to lose weight, or forget to call their mothers, fathers, and children on birthdays. No one is Barbie and thank goodness. An old song states, “What the world needs now is love, sweet love,” but the world needs real people who do not place a false persona onto themselves. People who are truth-tellers to their own hurt. 

What evokes emotions concerning the Bible–the King of Kings, the Beginning and the Ending, the Aleph, and the Tav? 

Can you imagine being in leadership, esteemed, profitable, and well-known in the marketplaces? Then along comes a teacher who rocks the boat, flips over tables, and tells stories that make anger rise up inside of you. 

 “A man planted a vineyard. He put a wall around it, dug a wine vat, and built a watchtower. Then he rented it out to some tenants and went away on a journey.

At harvest time, he sent a servant to the tenants to collect his share of the fruit of the vineyard. But they seized the servant, beat him, and sent him away empty-handed. Then he sent them another servant, and they struck him over the head and treated him shamefully. He sent still another, and this one they killed. He sent many others; some they beat, and others they killed. Finally, having one beloved son, he sent him to them. ”They will respect my son,” he said. But the tenants said to one another, ”This is the heir. Come, let us kill him, and the inheritance will be ours.” So they seized the son, killed him, and threw him out of the vineyard. What, then, will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and kill those tenants and will give the vineyard to others. Have you never read this Scripture: ”The stone, the builders, rejected has become the cornerstone. This is from the Lord, and it is marvelous in our eyes”?” At this, the leaders sought to arrest Jesus, for they knew He had spoken this parable against them. But fearing the crowd, they left Him and went away.”

And whom did they beat and kill? The prophets. John would lose his head, and they would place it on a platter while festive music played and a young girl influenced by her mother danced. A man who walked in the desert praying and seeking God’s favor, waiting patiently to announce the Messiah, now decapitated. What emotions does this stir inside you?

Is it a good time to pull up the parables our Savior spoke about and see how his audience responded? Listen closely to the words he said and the questions that aroused his audience and ask ourselves if it’s time to start rereading parables and feeling all the emotions of those listening. Then ask ourselves if we still have any feelings, any deep reflective thoughts. When was the last time you reread the gospels for the FIRST TIME? 

“He was in the world, and though the world was made through Him, the world did not recognize Him” (John 1:10). 


“And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or fields for the sake of My name will receive a hundredfold and will inherit eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last will be first” (Matthew 19:29).

“He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him” (John 1:11).

Do we really want to be like Him? because that requires dying over and over again– 

“Look, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and scribes. They will condemn Him to death and will deliver Him over to the Gentiles, who will mock Him and spit on Him and flog Him and kill Him. And after three days, He will rise again.”

While reading, notice the audience on a hillside versus the audience at the temple. Notice those who pretend to honor the Messiah but betray him for money. Notice the closest friends and followers scattering and even denying him at a time when he needed them most—death. 

“This is a trustworthy saying:

If we died with Him,

we will also live with Him;

if we endure,

we will also reign with Him;

if we deny Him,

He will also deny us;

if We are faithless,

He remains faithful,

for He cannot deny Himself” (II Timothy 2:11).

Let us Rethink what we may know about the King of Glory.

I am preparing for Book Four, King Revealed. Digging into His Words and also who the Messiah corrected and who he adored. Who wanted to sit by him and drink from his cup unto death? Look around you and decide if you look like Him because looking like him and walking like him may not get us a spot at the table or popularity. It may even come with much rejection from those we pour into daily. This Following Him is not for the faint of heart. He sends us out as sheep among wolves. He tells us to be as shrewd as a snake and as harmless as a dove. He holds out His cup and says, can you drink this? It’s heavy stuff. 


Tekoa Manning

2 thoughts on “Like One Whom Men Hide Their Faces.

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  1. Heavy stuff, indeed….And on those rare days we do find ourselves authentically, Living His Truth outloud before those in our innermost circles…we will find there comes as a reminder, that bit of an after taste and a lingering scent of the of sip we took from the bitter cup held out to us….And because we know He Did ..we Do … and so, we will!…

    Break some Bread Beloved…and let us sip again, that His Truth lingers long upon our lips, and wafts up like incense before Him! Selah🙏🏼🤲🏼🔥🕊💧💞🤲🏼🙏🏼

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