Image: This image shows how Judaism and Christianity were linked by the fish and the Star of David
An article that was published recently in Israel Today discusses the close relationship between the early Christians and Judaism. Israel Today published the following excerpt of the article:
It is not only the “ichthys” fish that is widely recognized as the secret identifying symbol of the early Christians in the Roman Empire. The Greek word for fish is ichthys—ΙΧΘΥΣ—which became an acronym for Iesous Christos Theou Hyios Soter—Jesus Christ, Son of God, Savior.
As the first church of Jewish believers had their own bishop during the first two centuries—a man who had to be full of the Holy Spirit and also a descendant of the house of David so that he was physically linked to the Messiah—they had their own identifying symbol. However, after the non-Jewish Christians grew throughout the world and began to outnumber the small group of Jewish Christians, it was not only the bishop that disappeared but also the Messianic congregation together with its early Christian symbol.
This symbol, discovered in Jerusalem, shows how the beliefs of the first Christians were distinctly Jewish.
Unfortunately, the full text of the article is available only to Israel Today subscribers.
Professor of Old Testament
Northern Baptist Seminary
Tags: Archaeology, Fish, Ichthys, Messianic Christians