*** Originally posted April 22, 2011
As a Christian I have always been fond of the Ichthys (simply meaning fish in Greek), the so-called “Christian Fish”. You see it every where; on cars, on necklaces, on shirts and pretty much anywhere else that a Christian can stick or wear it. This idea of displaying the Ichthys so the world can see it, is actually the entire reason that this very old and very loved symbol came into existence.
In the 1st and 2nd centuries it was used to communicate non-verbally that you were a Christian. The reason for this was the persecution that the Christians of the day were under. The emperors, most notably Nero in 54-68 AD, were particularly brutal to the Christian community. It is widely believed that both Paul and Peter were possibly killed under the reign of Nero! So trying to publically meet Christians was a little tricky to say the least.
Around 307 AD all that changed with Constantine becoming the emperor and making Christianity the religion of the kingdom. But the fish lives on!
The wheel is a little different, but very interesting to me. Here goes my attempt to explain it. Each step of the wheel is a letter of the Greek alphabet; Iota, Chi, Theta, Upsilon, Sigma.
Each of these letters relates into these words: Jesus Christ, Son of God, Savior. So powerful, maybe we as Christians need to reclaim the power to unite and identify us with our Savior, rather than just a symbol we wear without really understand what it means and how we ended up with it!