Polished Aluminium, Ivory Beams, Gold-plated Corpus
15 x 12 x 4 inches
Additional Shipping May Apply
Staff Not Included
Made in Germany
A striking processional cross. Suitable for all seasons of the Church year.
Matthew, Mark, Luke and John – the four Evangelists, that is, authors of the Gospels named after them – often appear iconographically as a human, a lion, an ox, and an eagle, all of which find their origin as the four “living creatures” of the Book of Ezekiel (Chapter 1) and the Book of Revelation (4.6-11). However, neither source explicitly links the four creatures to the four Evangelists.
Matthew the Evangelist is symbolized by a winged human being (not by an angel as commonly supposed) – a figure of humanity and rationality. The gospel of Matthew begins with the genealogy of Jesus from Abraham on and thereby emphasize the Incarnation and Christ’s human nature. Christians are then to use their reason as they strive for salvation.
Mark the Evangelist is symbolized by a winged lion (not a griffin), a figure of courage and royalty. Mark depicts John the Baptist preaching “like a lion roaring” at the beginning of his Gospel. The symbol of the lion also represents the Resurrection of Jesus since lions were believed to sleep with open eyes, an allusion to the “sleep” of Christ in the tomb. Christians are to be courageous as they work out their salvation in fear and trembling.
Luke the Evangelist is symbolized by a winged ox bull or calf, a figure of sacrifice, service and strength. Luke’s gospel begins with Zacharias in the temple busy with his priestly duties of offering sacrifices. The calf represents sacrifice of Jesus in his Passion and death on the cross. Christians are to be prepared to sacrifice themselves as they strive to attain their salvation.
John the Evangelist is symbolized by an eagle – a figure of the sky with a “Heaven’s view” of Earth. John starts with an eternal overview of Jesus the Logos. Christians should look directly on eternity without flinching as they yearn for salvation.
From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings and peals of thunder. Before the throne, seven lamps were blazing. These are the seven spirits of God. Also before the throne there was what looked like a sea of glass, clear as crystal. In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back. The first living creature was like a lion, the second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth was like a flying eagle. Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under his wings. Day and night they never stop saying:
Whenever the living creatures give glory, honor and thanks to him who sits on the throne and who lives for ever and ever, the twenty-four elders fall down before him who sits on the throne, and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They lay their crowns before the throne and say:“You are worthy, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they were created
and have their being.”