Monday, April 30, 2012

The Jesus Fish


"The Jesus Fish" or the "Ichthys" in Greek, is often seen these days in the form of car decals and bracelet charms.  The symbol became associated with Christians when, during the first century, the early Christians would draw one half of the symbol, and if a stranger completed the fish, he was a Christian and a friend, and if he didn't, he was not to be trusted.

But, I never stopped to wonder why they used the fish.  I always assumed that it had something to do with Christ's multiplication of loaves and fishes, but, while talking with one of my former teachers, I learned that there was a greater reason for the fish becoming "the" Christian ID symbol. 

"ΙΧΘΥΣ (Ichthys) is an acronym for "Ἰησοῦς Χριστός, Θεοῦ Υἱός, Σωτήρ", (Iēsous Christos, Theou Yios, Sōtēr), which translates into English as "Jesus Christ, God's Son, Savior".
Iota (i) is the first letter of Iēsous (Ἰησοῦς), Greek for "Jesus".
Chi (ch) is the first letter of Christos (Χριστός), Greek for "anointed".
Theta (th) is the first letter of Theou (Θεοῦ), Greek for "God's", the genitive case of Θεóς, Theos, Greek for "God".
Ypsilon (y) is the first letter of (h)yios[3] (Υἱός), Greek for "Son".
Sigma (s) is the first letter of sōtēr (Σωτήρ), Greek for "Savior"."

So, there's your history, language, and religion lesson for today!  Fascinating, isn't it?

May "Ichthys" bless all of you today! :)

The image and quoted text about the fish are both from Wikipedia.


  1. Just wanted to say that your blog is great! I'm trying to do something similar to what you've started here on my own blog. So many teens are moving away from the Church and I think that now more than ever we, their peers, need to step up and help those who are struggling where possible.

    May God bless you and your ministry here!

    1. Thank you so much! I'll be following your blog; you seem to have a wonderful start! It is so true, educating our peers is the best thing we can do, because we are the next generation: our opinions and choices will shape the world we will inherit as we become adults and decision-makers within it.

      May God bless you and your mission as well!


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