Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Hair & Facial Hair & Theologians

Warning: I consider this to be one of the weirdest posts I've ever made.

One interesting observation is the fact that the "norm" in 21st century Evangelical male hair & facial hair is radically different than that of the earlier reformers, puritans, and theologians. For example, at almost every point in history beards, moustaches, goatees, sideburns, and longer hair was not only accepted, but almost the norm among evangelical male Church leaders. However, in North American 21st century Evangelicalism, the norm has shifted over to shorter hair and clean shaven appearance.

The norm for me is a buzz cut and a (usually) cleanshaven face. On occasion I will grow a bit of a goatee or a beard.

Many Christians understand I Corinthians in such a way that it would forbid any males in any culture from having "long" hair. And yet, it would appear that (at least from the drawings of them), most learned theologians of the 1600's and before had long hair (at least by our standards). Being a guy who rarely has more than 1 inch of hair, I have no problem fitting into the idea that a guy should have short hair.

One interesting vein of thought is that the early evangelical pioneers, reformers, and theologians actually looked a bit more like the hippies of the 1960's than mainstream evangelicals of the 1960's.

I submit some examples (left column is well-known theologians, right column is 1960's counter-culture hippie-type musicians). Please understand that I..

1. Do not insinuiate that these individuals share similar lifestyles or views (in fact, their views of life and the meaning of life were VERY different)
2. Am not condoning the lifestyles of the people on the right side or calling into question the integrity of the people on the left side.

I merely want to provide some comic relief and some "Hmmm.." for the readers of this blog.

Top left -> John Bunyan
Top right -> David Crosby

Middle left -> B.B. Warfield
Middle right -> Jerry Garcia

Bottom left -> John Calvin
Bottom right -> Cat Stevens (interestingly, he converted to Islam later in life)

They kind of look like each other (with strong emphasis on KIND OF). By the grace of God, however, the people on the left column had a more solid foundation and a worldview that was able to provide them with TRUE peace. This, however does not change the fact that the people on the right were also created in God's image and also have displayed vast amounts of creativity, skill, etc.

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Blogger Paul said...

Here ya go

...And Yes... I own a T-Shirt

12:19 AM  
Blogger Mark said...

Cool! I should join.

Only thing is, I'll have to wait until I grow a beard worth being identified by :)

11:39 AM  
Blogger Ian said...

Good grief! That's scary!
Good eye.

12:16 PM  

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