If the first thing you think of when you hear the name Jesus is a bunch of people trying to get you to change the way you dress, the language you speak, or the people you spend time with, you might have been lied to about who he actually is! Although many people have similar assumptions about Jesus, he is actually quite different. 

In this article, we’re going to tackle three of the biggest misconceptions about Jesus. If you’ve ever been curious about who he is and why so many people seem to take him so seriously, read on and find out. 

Myth #1: Jesus was a European religious leader 

If you searched online for an image of Jesus, the top results would probably show you a Jesus with white skin and blue eyes. Perhaps he’s wearing something that looks like a Roman toga and holding up two fingers with a far off, dreamy expression on his face. You’d be forgiven for thinking that Jesus was born in Copenhagen! 

But of course, we know he was actually born in Bethlehem, which is in the Middle East. He grew up as the son of a humble carpenter, and we have no reason to believe he looked any different from anyone else around him. In fact, there is a prophesy about Jesus that tells us he would not have anything about his looks that stood out: 

“He grew up before him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground. He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.” 

Isaiah 53:2

Suffice it to say, Jesus certainly looked more like someone from the global South, as opposed to the global North. And that is very important when you consider our next myth to debunk… 

Myth #2: Jesus wants you to give up your native culture 

There once was a man in India who drew a lot of strength and hope from his faith in Jesus and he wanted the other members of his ethnic group to know that same source of hope. But there was a problem. All the other Christians in his region of India behaved completely different from a typical Indian. They changed their names, stopped wearing sarees, and began to speak in English! He recalls one particularly humorous story: 

“There were foreigners who tried to start churches in my village, and when they did, they told the young women to wear a white dress on their wedding day. One of these girls cried out in horror at such a notion, but the foreigner didn’t understand why. He did not realize that—in my culture—a woman wears a red saree on the day of her wedding. White dresses are instead worn to a funeral. So essentially what this foreigner was saying, was, “Congratulations on your wedding, but it looks like your life is over now that you’ve married this man!” 

The Indian man went on to realize that the Bible makes no mention of what a woman should wear to her wedding. It also says nothing about what foods to eat, and it was written a long time before modern English was even spoken. So, he created what he called a Discovery Bible Study (DBS). This simple process promotes self-discovery of what the Bible says, rather than having it interpreted by someone else, who may unintentionally mix their own culture into its message.

The DBS model resulted in an explosion of people experiencing the love, forgiveness, and peace of Jesus for the first time in their lives. But what was truly beautiful was that it was a completely indigenous expression of faith in him. Created and led by Indians who still dressed, ate, and spoke like Indians! This kind of culturally diverse expression of faith is actually what the Bible says Jesus wants, as it describes what his throne room will look like one day: 

“After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb.”

Revelation 7:9

Myth #3: Jesus wants to turn you against your family  

The Bible gives this instruction to all disciples of Jesus:

“If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.”

Romans 12:18 

Unfortunately, Jesus is too often the cause for a lot of families to turn against each other. Many times, a father or mother feels dishonored by their children wanting to learn more about Jesus, especially when faith in him is perceived as a foreign idea.  

This is where the DBS process comes in once again. Rather than removing someone from their family or community to be taught by an outsider, DBS encourages a person to take the Bible back to their family so they can all learn from it together. This was actually common practice in the Bible. The book of Acts is filled with examples of entire families becoming disciples of Jesus, and very rarely did anyone do so by themselves. (Acts 11:14, Acts 16:15, Acts 16:34, Acts 18:8) 

Of course, DBS won’t always prevent persecution from happening. So it’s okay stand up for our right to become a disciple of Jesus no matter what anyone else says, but we should also do everything in our power to have peace in our families and communities, as it says in the book of Romans.


Now that we’ve debunked these myths, close your eyes and imagine Jesus once again. Does he look the same? Perhaps he looks less like a stern, blue-eyed man, handing you an English grammar book. Perhaps he looks a little more like you. Perhaps he seems just a little more inviting than he did before. 

If that’s the case,  we encourage you to try having a DBS with your friends and family. To make it as easy as possible for you, we’ve created a mobile app and translated the app into many different languages, with new ones being added every day. It is our sincere hope that this encourages more culturally indigenous expressions of faith in Jesus all over the globe. Get started today by downloading the app on your apple or android device and don’t forget to check out this simple video explaining how to use it!