In George Ferguson’s informative book, “Signs and Symbols in Christian Art” he lists the butterfly as a symbol of resurrection. He explains, “The butterfly is sometimes seen in paintings of the Virgin and Child, and is usually in the Child’s hand. It is a symbol of the Resurrection of Christ. In a more general sense, the butterfly may symbolize the resurrection of all men. This meaning is derived from the three stages in its life as represented by the caterpillar, the chrysalis, and the butterfly, which are clearly symbols of life, death, and resurrection.” (page 13)
This Easter, I set out to design some eggs using this Christian symbol. I believe Jesus rose from his tomb three days after his crucifixion, so the butterfly is more than just a beautiful symbol of the past, it is a symbol of future hope. Why?
Paul wrote to the early Christians living in the city of Corinth:
” I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.” (I Corinthians 15:50)
Are we going to become butterflies? No, much better than that. Paul explains earlier in his letter, “Our bodies are buried in brokenness, but they will be raised in glory. They are buried in weakness, but they will be raised in strength. They are buried as natural human bodies, but they will be raised as spiritual bodies.”
We will have new bodies, able to do unimaginably more than we can in our physical bodies. Like what? The Bible doesn’t tell us exactly what it will be like, but if Jesus was walking through walls, appearing to different people in different places, and flying up to heaven, we have clues of how amazing it will be.
How can I believe in something supernatural? There are many reasons, but I’ll share one. The Hebrew prophet, Isaiah, wrote in detail about Christ’s life and death 700 years before Jesus was born. I’ve never heard any convincing explanation as to how someone could get the details of another’s human being’s life and death so accurate seven centuries before they lived, except that it was information given to him from God. The almost incomprehensible accuracy of the Hebrew scribal tradition (how they copied their scrolls and passed them on through the centuries) was affirmed by the discovery of the book of Isaiah among the Dead Sea Scrolls in 1947. The Qumran copy matched up with the earliest text at that time, which was a thousand years younger. The text had not been tampered with and it had not been altered. So we find ourselves in an interesting situation when we come to Isaiah. We can choose either coincidence or divine revelation. Given the time that passed between Isaiah and the birth of Jesus (700 years), I find coincidence to be more difficult to believe! Excellent scholarly exposition on this topic can be read here. To my mind, the Bible has proven itself to be a supernatural book, and this is one reason I believe the biblical account of the Resurrection of Christ to be true.
I began with wooden eggs that were already painted white. Using patterns on my phone as a guide, I sketched the designs using a .03 mm. Micron pen. Chameleon alcahol ink markers added gradient blended hues to the wings. It was a bit tricky, since the markers smeared the pen. I had to be careful, but the fin tip ends of the markers allowed me to color in the small spaces.
Here are some process photos~ Thanks for stopping by to see my art and may God richly bless you and yours this Resurrection Sunday!
“Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live.”