Dual Nature of Christ

Christ Pantocrator
Christ Pantocrator
Composite images of both sides of Christ’s face

The Christ Pantocrator of St. Catherine’s Monastery at Sinai is one of the oldest Eastern Roman religious icons, dating from the 6th century AD.

Did you think that maybe the artist didn’t quite get the eyes right? There is a reason for that. Just like there is a reason for every brushstroke in iconography.

Many agree that this icon represents the dual nature of Christ, illustrating traits of both man and God, perhaps influenced by the ecumenical councils of the previous century at Ephesus and Chalcedon.

Christ’s features on his left side (the viewer’s right) are supposed to represent the qualities of his human nature, while his right side (the viewer’s left) represents his divinity

His right hand is shown opening outward, signifying his gift of blessing, while the left hand and arm is clutching a thick Gospel book.