“Now as the ark of the Lord came into the City of David, Michal, Saul's daughter, looked through a window and saw King David leaping and whirling before the Lord; and she despised him in her heart.” NKJV
The “physog’s” of three women at a window
Zwinglian reformed minister, pastor and “first preacher” of St Peter’s church in Zurich, was none other than Johann Kaspar Lavater, (1741-1801.) Theologian, Swiss nationalist, writer, politician, preacher, poet and scientist, he is also credited with being the father of 19th Century physiognomy which, in brief, is the discernment of inner qualities by the outward examination of set facial features.
Lavater’s works on physiognomy were so successful that they continued to influence descriptive novelists way after his death, the facially descriptive works of Charles Dickens being a prominent example. Nowadays of course, the whole Greek rooted work is considered as pseudo-scientific nonsense. Nevertheless, we all know that the eyes are indeed the windows of the soul and more often than not, our unfeigned features, our steady state countenance almost always proves to be a true witness of our soulish state.
The Bible speaks of three women seen looking out of a window and surely, there is no better place for the fixed and stable features of a face to be truly observed. There are no mirrors, there are no onlookers, only the face at the window. Through the intimation of the Biblical text, I believe we can glance at the windows of the soul, through those same facial frames set in solid silver for all the world to see. Maybe Pastor Lavater was right?
The three women at the window in the Bible are respectively: The mother of Sisera, Michal the daughter of Saul and the wife of the wild dancing King David and finally, Jezebel. (See Judges 5:28-30, 2 Samuel 6:16 and 2 Kings 9:30-31) Together, these three friezes of fallen female royalty, all combine to present a picture of dire disappointment, seduction and despising destruction. They carry in their faces nothing short of foetal fatality, for the child of their destruction is already birthed upon their cheeks, because they have forsaken the one true God, despised His purpose, seduced His people and killed His prophets.
There is no misogyny in my observations, no, they are indeed just that, observations. Tonight consider that maybe and I say maybe, some of our inner world can be captured in our outer shadow. Sometimes a good stare then at our steady state appearance can be a truer diagnostic to our real condition than any words offered by any earthly man.
Maybe tonight, if you dare, it’s time to take a good look in the mirror and then with God’s help, take some corrective action, for often times, our physog tells us much, much more than we ever care to know.
Listen: “The mother of Sisera looked through the window, and cried out through the lattice, 'Why is his chariot so long in coming? Why tarries the clatter of his chariots?' Her wisest ladies answered her, Yes, she answered herself, 'are they not finding and dividing the spoil: To every man a girl or two; for Sisera, plunder of dyed garments, plunder of garments embroidered and dyed, two pieces of dyed embroidery for the neck of the looter?'“ Judges 5:28-30 NKJV.
Pray: Lord, help me rightly examine myself, in Jesus name I pray, amen.
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