Regardless of who occupies the White House, people throughout the world recognize our President as the most influential person in the United States. International newspapers carry his photo and report on his policies, often leading their readers to believe his views are identical with those of the American people. To many nationals abroad he is the face of our nation.
For years Walter Cronkite was the face of the CBS news department. Everyone recognized “Uncle Walter” and knew when and where to find his week-night broadcast on the television dial. His celebrity status eventually made CBS Evening News the number one watched program during its time slot and brought millions of advertising dollars to his corporate employer.
The same phenomenon is often seen in the sports world. For two decades, Ted Williams was an iconic figure inseparably linked to the Boston Red Sox. Fans who gathered at Fenway Park in the forties and fifties were there to see the “Splendid Splinter,” wearing that unforgettable number “nine” on the back of his jersey. Others played on the team, but it was Williams who was the face of the franchise.
When Paul wrote to the church in Colossae, he introduced himself as “an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God,” (Colossians 1:1) and continued his epistle by noting the extraordinary position Jesus holds in the kingdom of God. Speaking of Jesus, Paul declared, “In whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins: who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature. . . .” He summarized his laudatory praise of Jesus with these comments: “And He is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things, He might have the preeminence.” (Colossians 1:14, 15, 18).
When Jesus came into the world, He fulfilled at least three vital purposes. He shed his blood as a sacrifice to atone for the sins of all mankind; He left his teachings and the account of his ministry as an example for his disciples; and He put a face on God. Those who wish to see God need only look upon Jesus Christ, whom Paul declared to be “the image of the invisible God.”
Would you like to know God in a more personal way? Get acquainted with His Son. He is the embodiment of the Father. Jesus told Philip, “He who has seen me has seen the Father. (John 14:9). Jesus Christ is an icon for the kingdom of God – the face of the franchise.