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Food as a source of symbolism in Christianity

Given the centrality and importance of food for all living things, it is not surprising that images associated with what we eat have become important in Christian tradition. The most powerful of these images are, of course, the bread and wine of communion, which refer to the body and blood of Jesus, and his sacrifice on the cross.


There are many other such examples, including milk, honey, grapes, lamb, olives ... in fact, since Christians believe that all good things are a gift of God, every meal has deep religious significance.

More Symbols of Christianity: 

Index of Christian Symbols

The Human Body as a Symbol of the Sacred
The body as a symbol of the sacred

The Face of Jesus as a Symbol of Faith
The Face of Jesus as a symbolic construct.

Pop Christianty
Pray, How Often? Pop culture and commerical images in service to the Christian faith ... or is it Christianity in service to commercialism? You decide.

The symbolic power of simple shapes
Even shapes are symbolic in Christianity.

The significance of color in Christian symbolism
The meaning of color in Christian symbolism

Food symbols in Christian tradition
Food symbols in Christian tradition

Doves, Eagles, and Sparrows
Doves, Eagles, and Sparrows ... birds as symbols of the divine.

The Fish
The fish has been an important Christian symbol, not only because of the fact that Jesus included several fishermen in his close circle, but also because The initial letters of each word in the Greek phrase "Jesus Christ, Son of God, Savior" form the word ICHTHUS, which means "fish."

Christian ship symbols
Christian ship symbols

The Ankh Cross
The Ankh Cross is an ancient Egyptian symbol for life, combining the feminine circle and masculine staff to form the whole. It was adapted by early Christians because of its resemblance to the cross.

The Jerusalem Cross
Jerusalem Cross

The Maltese Cross
The Maltese Cross )

Some of the images on this page are the work of Walter E. Gast and are used with permission. For further information about copyright permissions please visit the Christian Symbols Home Page:
http://www.planetgast.net/symbols/

Charles Henderson

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The Rev. Charles P. Henderson is a Presbyterian minister and Executive Director of
  CrossCurrents.
He is the author of God and Science (John Knox Press, 1986).  
A revised and expanded version of the book is appearing here.
God and Science (Hypertext Edition, 2005).
He is also editor of a new book, featuring articles by world class scientists and theologians, and illustrating the leading views on the relationship between science and religion:
Faith, Science and the Future (CrossCurrents Press, 2007).

Charles also tracks the boundry between the virtual and the real at his blog: Next World Design, focusing on the mediation of art, science and spirituality in the metaverse.  

For more information about Charles Henderson.