We all know it is Holy Week and are aware of Jesus triumphal journey into Jerusalem and the events that followed. But what we may not know are the many symbols we as Christians use during the season of Lent and Easter. At our Lenten Luncheon last week, Resurrection pastors explained some of the symbols of the meaning behind Easter. Below you will find a few of the most common. See if you know their symbolism. If not, they are shown.
- Caterpillars, Cocoons and Butterflies—the cycle of life. Caterpillars represent earthly life, cocoons represent burial and the butterfly represents resurrection.
- Lamb—Jesus, the Lamb of God. His death replaced the traditional sacrificial lamb used by the Jews.
- Rabbits—Christians observed the rabbit as it was emerging from a dark hole and bounding across the earth thus representing Jesus emerging from the tomb and the spread of the gospel across the earth.
- Pretzels—An early Christian symbol portraying arms crossed in prayer. Made only of flour and water and thus unleavened, they could be eaten during Lent. They were probably first made by monks as an edible teaching tool.
- New Clothing for Easter—Early Christians put on new clothes after they had been baptized to represent their new life.
- Eggs, Seeds and Bulbs—Their exterior appears to be hard and lifeless, though new life is contained within.
- Grass, Flowers, New Plants—Resurrection of life that had appeared lifeless.
- Silver coin—Judas’ betrayal.
- Dice—The soldiers gambled for Jesus’ robe.
- Thorns—Used to make a crown that was placed on Jesus’ head while he suffered on the cross.
As Jesus often used symbols to identify secular things with Christian meanings, so may you use these symbols to show your faith. Happy Easter!