What does God’s face look like? Although no one knows for sure, the bible character Jacob saw something that bore a close resemblance.
Jacob grew up as somewhat of a scoundrel. Perhaps his most notorious acts were stealing both the very valuable birthright and the paternal blessing from his brother Esau. So it’s no surprise that years later as the two were about to meet again for the first time in decades, Jacob was in fear for his life. Did Esau hold a grudge, and if so what might happen?
Always one to play the angles, Jacob sent a gift in advance. To his surprise, however, Esau replied that no peace offering was necessary. He had forgiven Jacob, and all was well. In shock and gratitude, Jacob said “I have seen your face, and it is like seeing God’s face, for you have accepted me.”
Jacob knew, as we all do, that he had done wrong. What he didn’t expect was for the one he offended to understand and provide restoration. In Esau’s acts of grace, Jacob rightly saw something supernatural. The face of God carries the expression of acceptance.