#328 – A History of the Catholic Church – Sol Invictus


As Christianity expanded and developed in the Roman Empire it would use pagan images and symbols to express Christian theology – Christ as the Good Shepherd, Christ as the Philosopher, Christ as the Unconquered Sun. But the Christians did not simply adopt these images, they gave to them particularly Christian meanings to show how the message of Christ was different that anything that had ever happened before.


Image: Image of Christ as Sol Invictus in the Tomb of the Julii

Via Saleria Sarcophagus showing Christ as the Philosopher and as the Good Shepherd

Sarcophagus showing Jesus Christ as philosopher raising Lazarus from the dead

Coin of Vespasian with image of Sol

Coin of Caracalla with image of Sol Invictus

Coin of Aurelian with image of Sol Invictus

Coin of Probus with image of Sol Invictus

Image of Apollo riding chariot at Orbe Bosceaz, Switzerland

More information about the Tomb of the Julii/Mausoleum M and Saint Peter’s Basilica – including map of the necropolis

Sarcophagus of La Gayole

Steven Hijmans – “Christ or Sol in Mausoleum M of the Vatican Necropolis?”

Robin M Jensen, “Towards a Christian Material Culture”, The Cambridge History of Christianity: Origins to Constantine, Vol 1, New York: Cambridge, 2006, pp. 568-589.

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#328 – A History of the Catholic Church – Sol Invictus


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