Why Icons?

Icons – sacred art portraying Christ and those persons made holy by – flow from a proper understanding of the Incarnation. God, who is Spirit, became Man, who is Flesh, and the material world will never be the same again. If God used material creation to reach for us, we can use material creation to reach for Him (John 1:1,14; Colossians 1:15-20; Hebrews 1:1-4). Icons have been part of Christian worship since the beginning, as they helped spread the faith “in pictures” to those who had no access to written Scriptures. Icons are NEVER worshipped, only venerated. Worship is reserved for God alone, and the veneration offered to an icon “passes through” the icon to the person depicted, a person who himself or herself depicted Christ in word, deed, and thought. Why are icons special to those who venerate them? Imagine if a dearly-loved one passed away, and the only thing by which to remember him or her was a photograph.

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