CXXII recently released the Encounters Collection and have received several questions regarding the meaning and symbolism of each design therefore we thought we would explain some of them in this post. CXXII believes that as a creative we use our unique ability to visualize ideas and communicate with these visualizations. The Encounters Collection is an artistic interpretation that @Sanillustration and I collaborated on by visualizing the bible story details that they intent to communicate in a new way.
Q: What does Encounters collection mean?
A: The Encounters collection was thought of between CXXII and @Sanillustration based on people in the Bible who have ENCOUNTERED Jesus after the crucifixion. Each design has a good amount of symbolism and communicates interpreted meaning and detail that relate to the story.
Q: What story are each of the shirts ?
- 1) Story of Doubting Thomas - John 20:24-29.
- 2) The Story of Mary and Jesus in the Garden - John 20:11-18
- 3) The Road to Emmaus - Luke 24
We would like to now briefly explain the different symbolism of each design and explain some of the story.
The Doubter Tee is based on the story of Thomas and his Encounter with Jesus in John 20:24-29:
As you look at the design you the figure of Thomas in the middle and the story Thomas was in disbelief that Jesus was standing in from of him so Jesus told Thomas to feel his hands and side where he was pierced and wounded. After doing that Thomas believed who was standing in front of him.
• Another aspect of the design show the cloth that was used to bury Jesus flowing throughout the design and creating the crown at the top. The crown symbolizes the royalty of Jesus as the Son of the Creator the One True King. The spear that Thomas is holding represents the spear that pierced Jesus side.
• Along the bottom is the beast of Doubt that consumed Thomas and the doubt that believers can conquer with the Blood of Christ.
The Mourner Tee is based on the story of Mary and his Encounter with Jesus in the Garden from John 20:11-18:
This illustration has the unique story of Mary and her encounter with Jesus in the Garden. Mary approaches the tomb to see that it is empty, as she weeps two angels appear and ask her why she was weeping. As she turns around she noticed a figure in front of her and does not recognize that it is Jesus at first but the gardener. He responds to her by calling her by name, her eyes are opened and she realizes that it is Jesus standing before her.
There are many unique design symbols within this illustration here are some of the main one we get the most questions about:
• Why are there Guns? - The guns represent the two royal guards that stood outside of the tomb where Jesus was held, we took a more modern approach with the design using guns instead of swords. The bottom of the guns morph into tools that you would find in a garden.
• The vines are red and found through-out the design as they weave around and go in front of Mary's eyes to show that after Jesus called her by name she saw the situation through a new lens and Jesus for who He was.
• The Jar at the bottom represents the alabaster jar filled with perfume that Mary used to wash the feet of Jesus.
• The Bees on Mary's arm represent life in the garden, bees pollinate and most plants cannot live or reproduce with out them. Just like Jesus brought life back into the world and gives us everlasting life.
• The artist also used the veil that is covered over Mary's head to represent the veil that was torn when Jesus died on the cross.
*This design is full of symbolism and creative interpretation.
The Travelers tee is based on the story of The Road to Emmaus and the 2 men who walked with Jesus from Luke 24:
Not familiar with this story? Neither was I until I sat down to read through it and learn about this amazing encounter that two Men had with Jesus. Two men walked to the village of Emmaus, as they walked they were approached by Jesus ( whom they didn't recognize ). The three of them talk to Jesus about everything that just happened back in Jerusalem and as they come to the village the men invite Jesus to sit down and eat with them. As they sat to eat, Jesus took the bread and blessed it and broke it and that is when the two men realize that they are dining with Jesus. Soon after they recognize him, Jesus disappears from their sight.
Here are some details of the elements of this third Encounter design:
• The hands above the two guys breaking bread represent Jesus breaking bread with his two disciples in the story. The lines that enter down through the body show the opening of the hearts and minds of the two disciples.
• The heart in the middle of the illustration and the burning match stick are a part of the verse: "Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the scriptures to us?”
• The detailed visualization element of the shoelaces that start at the shoe and wrap all the way around to show the shoelaces that finally enter the backpack and open it up to reveal the heart.
I hope that reading through this blog post will help you better understand the symbolism of the Encounters Collection. We also hope that wearing our apparel will allow you to have a unique Encounter with someone and be able to tell them the story and what it represents and your story of redemption and a future due to your own personal Encounter with Jesus Christ.
The quote I want to end with is this...“As our eyes grow accustomed to sight they armor themselves against wonder. ”