This is a two part series of original paintings rich in symbolism painted on multi media paper using acrylic paints.
Part 1 is titled The Armor of Light and Part 2 is titled The Shield of Faith.
The meaning behind The Armor of Light:
The Armor of Light
Ephesians 6 speaks of putting on the full armor of God.
Paul describes the armor of God as being clothed in light (Roman's 13:12 ). God wraps Himself in light- He is our lamp turning darkness into light. He is a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our path.
(Psalm 27:1) The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
When we put on the armor of light we are able to withstand the fiery arrows of the evil one and stand firm empowered by the Holy Spirit depicted by the flaming eyes as described below.
This painting is an attempt at depicting the light of God that emanates from the physical symbol of God's light- the golden lampstand which is the menorah. "It has come to represent the presence of God among his people , the Eternal Light who illuminates His chosen and through them enlightens the world"(John D. Garr- God's Lamp. Man's Light)
Moses was instructed by God to make a lampstand ( menorah)of pure gold which is a symbol of God himself the source of light. Daniel describes God as the indwelling of light (Dan 2:22 )with eyes like flaming torches
(Dan 10:6) John describes one like the son of man standing in the midst of the golden lampstand with eyes like a flame of fire.(Rev 1:14) and as the son of God who has eyes like a flame of fire( Rev 2:18)
The menorah's seven flames are repeatedly used to depict God himself.
Isaiah describes the seven spirits of God as (1) the Spirit if the Lord (2) wisdom (3) understanding (4) counsel (5) power (6) knowledge and (7) reverence.( Isaiah 11 2-3) This painting depicts the Lord as the central stem of the golden menorah with three branches -wisdom, understanding and counsel to the left and three branches- power, knowledge and reverence to the right.
The shape of this symbol of light here is patterned after the tree of life which yields forth fruit for every month of the year ,with leaves for the healing of the nations as described in (Revelation 22: 1-2) . Fruit trees will grow on both banks of the river. Their leaves will not wither, nor will fruit fail. They will bear every month because their water flows from the sanctuary and their fruit will be for food and their leaves for healing ( Ezekiel 47:12)
Included in the painting are numerous symbolic elements surrounding the tree of life and on the borders, as follows;
barley, wheat and grapes representing the three main festivals of the LORD- Passover Pentecost and Tabernacles;
almond blossoms which are connected to the budding of Aaron's rod; fire representative of God when He first spoke to Moses from the burning bush; water representing the Church by the washing of water with the Word ; pomegranates representing the 613 commandments of God and also the fullness that comes from God's wisdom and power; date palms representing the righteous man who will flourish like the palm tree (Ps 92:2) and lilies representing the lilies of the field - not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these(Matthew 6:28).
The meaning behind The Shield of Faith:The armor of God series
The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer
My God, my Rock, in whom I take tefuge;
My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold ( Psalm 18:2)
The shield in this painting is highly decorative and rich with symbolism, encircled by the scarlet thread of redemption which runs throughout the pages of scripture. Depicted here is the scarlet cord which Rahab hung from the walls of Jericho by which the two spies sent by Joshua were able to escape and which later allowed her and her family to be saved .The scarlet thread binds the old testament to John the Baptist's introduction to Jesus as the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.
The apple forms the center of the shield. Psalm 17, David prays for protection from the deadly enemies who surround him and petitions God to keep him as the apple of His eye, promising to behold God's face in righteousness . When we take up the belt of righteousness and the shield of faith, we too with all prayer and petition can stand firm knowing that God will hide us in the shadow of His wings.
The tzitzit depicted here is symbolic of the fringes attached to the hem of Jesus' garment .The woman with the issue of blood for twelve years who said" if only I can touch his garment, I will be well" ( Matthew 9: 20- 22) pushed through the crowd to touch the corners of his garment( wings) to receive miraculous healing. The Son of Righteousness shall arise with healing in his wings(Malachi 4:2) is tied to this description of the woman who was healed and represented here in the painting by the fiery sun above the seven colored rainbow, a reminder of God's covenant with man. God’s covenant was more than just a promise never to flood the earth. The rainbow also symbolises God’s goodness in allowing those who trust in him to be saved.
Pomegranates are also depicted here as in part 1 of the series representing the fullness that comes with God's wisdom and power.
The olive tree was revered in the biblical period for its glory, the freshness of its evergreen leaves, and the strength of its roots. These leaves encircle the apples of gold in settings of silver on the shield. A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver (Prov 25:11).
When we put on the armor of light we are able to withstand the fiery arrows of the evil one and stand firm empowered by the Holy Spirit depicted by the flaming eyes as described.
When we take up the belt of righteousness and the shield of faith, we too with all prayer and petition can stand firm knowing that God will hide us in the shadow of His wings.
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