I have been studying beards.
Here is some of what I have found in my studies on the subject.Don't round your hair at the temples or mar the edges of your beard.
- Leviticus 19:27
Nowhere does Adonai say that cutting the beard is acceptable. One of the humiliations of a conqueror was to shave or take off the beards of the men.
The reason for both prohibitions in Lev. 19:27 have to do with pagan practices. Adonai told His People Israel not to shave their hair around the temples by the ears and around the head. This was not only a perversion of the hair of the head but also a practice of idolatry.
Adonai commanded His People not to cut or to trim their beards because of grief toward the dead. This was another pagan practice. They were not to 'mar' or destroy their beards.
From this, we can see that any trimming of the beard would be prohibited by Adonai, whether done for pagan or other reasons. It would seem too that the prohibition not to trim the beard extends to both the length of the beard as well as it's origin upon the cheeks and the face.
Yeshua therefore, like Fathers Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and King David and Isaiah, etc., would have had a full, untrimmed beard.
The way that Adonai has made Man is with a beard. When men shave it to “beautify” themselves, as the ancient Greeks and Romans did, they alter Adonai's design for men. It is a profaning or defiling of what Adonai has made.
Beards are one of Adonai's ways to distinguish between a man and a woman. In this day when men have long hair and woman have shaved heads, it is hard to distinguish some men from some women. Adonai never intended this. Adonai wants men to have beards. It was considered a disgrace for an adult man not to have a beard (2 Samuel 10:4-5).
"How womanly it is for one who is a man to comb himself and shave himself with a razor, for the sake of fine effect, and to arrange his hair at the mirror, shave his cheeks, pluck hairs out of them, and smooth them! ... For God wished women to be smooth and to rejoice in their locks alone growing spontaneously, as a horse in his mane. But He has adorned man, like the lions, with a beard, and endowed him as an attribute of manhood, with a hairy chest, a sign of strength and rule." - Clement of Alexandria (vol. 2, p. 275)
"This, then, is the mark of the man, the beard. By this, he is seen to be a man. It is older than Eve. It is the token of the superior nature... It is therefore unholy to desecrate the symbol of manhood, hairiness." - Clement of Alexandria (vol. 2, p. 276)
"The nature of the beard contributes in an incredible degree to distinguish the maturity of bodies, or to distinguish the sex, or to contribute to the beauty of manliness and strength." - Lactantius (vol. 7, p. 288)
Because it was part of Israelite life for a man to have a beard, the Bible has only a few direct references to beards. However, those mentioned are significant and set precedence for a man having a beard. The Bible refers to the following people as having beards:
Aaron the High Priest - Psalm 133
King David - Samuel 21:13
Ezra the scribe - Ezra 9:3
Yeshua the Messiah - Isaiah 50:6
These are all significant people. The most notable of them is our Savior, Yeshua the Messiah. We can learn something important about beards by reviewing Isaiah 50:6 - I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting
. In this prophetic passage we learn that Yeshua not only had a beard, but that it was long enough to be ripped out by those who tortured him to death. Yeshua is our example (1 Peter 2:21). As such, we must follow his example.Do you or does a man in your life have a beard? Why or why not?