The Son of God became flesh. This panel depicts the Birth of Jesus with the Large Star that led the wise men to Jesus The small stars show He was born at night. He is lying in a manger with beams emanating to show He is not just true man, He is also true God.
Christ is Victorious. This panel depicts Christ’s saving work. He died on the cross for the sake of all sinners. The cross stands behind all His work. He defeated Satan (the serpent). He is the risen Lord who blessed His disciples (Jesus with outstretched arms) when He ascended into heaven. He now reigns (the crown) at God’s right hand over all creation for the sake of His bride the church.
The Dove, as a sign of peace, signaled the end of the flood and embodied the Holy Spirit to come down on Jesus at His baptism. In baptism we died with Christ and were raised again (the cross). The water signifies the flood in Noah’s day, the Red Sea, the Jordan over which the Isrealites crossed to the promised land and a washing of regeneration and renewal. The shell was often used in baptism and is backgrounded by a sun that shows the new day/new life that begins in baptism.
The Office of Word and Sacrament
This panel represents the work of Pastors. Jesus gave His Keys to His Apostles (Pastors) to open and close heaven’s door by the forgiveness of sins. They are to shepherd His flock and the staff is both to discipline and to protect the sheep. Pastors are yoked to Christ (the stole is the yoke) and serve Him by serving His people with the Sacraments-Baptism, Confession (the Keys), and The Lord’s Supper.
The Lord’s Supper
The wheat and grapes represent the bread and wine. The Chalice holds the blood of Christ and the Paten (plate) holds the host-the body of Christ. The sun or radiance from the cup indicates this is of God, this gives life.
Sin, Death, the Breaking of the Law
The serpent tempted Adam and Eve to eat the fruit. By this they broke God’s only law, but in reality they broke all the commandments God would give on Mount Sinai much later (broken stone tablets). The wages of sin is death (the skull).
The Holy Trinity
The triangle represents three persons in one God. The Father is the Creator of all that is. He is the giving God whose hand created and preserves all things. The Son of God became man to die for mankind and atone for our sins, perhaps why he is darkened in the picture. The Spirit of God hovered over the face of the waters at creation, descended in the form of a dove on Jesus at his baptism, and is the bringer of peace. The Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son, perhaps why the Spirit is in the middle.
Justification means that everything is set right between God and man. God set things right on the cross through the offering of His Son. Now the broken Law is fulfilled and kept in Christ Jesus. This righteousness happened at the cross and is delivered through the Word (stone tablets), given to us in baptism (shell), and in the Lord’s Supper (Chalice). The Cross (Jesus’ death) is our theology and our salvation.
This video by the artists details their work to beautify Redeemer through art. The copyright of these “icons” was purchased for one time use through Concordia Publishing House. Redeemer has never looked so beautiful and “churchly.” To God Alone be the Glory.