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From Crosses to Eggs: 10 Fascinating Christian Easter Symbols

Ah, Easter! I have such fond memories as a child with my big poofy Easter dress and an awesome basket filled with goodies. Fast-forward to when I became a Christian, and all of a sudden, Easter took on a whole new meaning for me. The truth, the power, and the purpose of Easter came alive to me; all in Christ.

This is why I thought it would be fun to cover Easter symbols. Of course, if you have been around Think About Such Things, you will know my love of Biblical symbolism runs deep.

When we think about Easter, the first things that many of us are familiar with are eggs, bunnies, and all things spring. Then there are those deeper symbols like white lilies and crosses.

But do we truly understand their origins and the wealth of meaning they represent? Let’s find out together!

Christian Easter Symbols

10 Popular Christian Easter Symbols

For Christians around the globe, Easter is more than just a holiday; it is a pivotal time of spiritual reflection and renewal.

Central to this celebration are sacred symbols that carry the narrative of Christ’s resurrection and the profound message of hope, renewal, and redemption.

The Cross: Eternal Symbol of Sacrifice

The Cross, a universal emblem of Christianity, is filled with significance. Historically, it was a Roman instrument of torture and execution. But for us Christians its a symbol of redemption and life.

As we contemplate the Cross, it is important to understand that Jesus not only suffered physically but spiritually as well. He bore our sins upon Himself, taking our punishment so that we could be reconciled to God.

There would be no Easter without the cross.

The Lamb: An Innocent Sacrifice

Easter lamb

You may have seen lambs as a symbol during Easter. This gentle yet powerful symbol pointed to the purity and meekness of Jesus Christ.

Its significance stems from the Jewish Passover tradition, where the sacrificial lamb’s blood marked the Israelites’ homes, sparing them from the Angel of Death.

In Christianity. Christ’s passion echoes that sacrificial symbolism, often associated with Easter. He was the lamb that was slain for our sins, taking on the punishment and bringing salvation to all who believe in Him. Praise God!!

The Easter Lily: Triumph Over Darkness

eater lilies in a vase

The Easter Lily is esteemed as the symbol of purity, hope, and renewal.

As the lily boasts radiant whiteness, a color traditionally representing purity, it becomes the foundational beacon for the Easter message of renewal.

Emanating from the Easter story, Jesus’ resurrection is the ultimate symbol of new life and the triumph of light over darkness.

The Palm Branch: A Symbol of Victory

Palm branches were used in ancient times to honor and welcome nobles and kings. In Christianity, the palm branch is an enduring symbol of Jesus Christ’s triumphal entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday.

The traditional use of palm branches in churches during Easter Sunday represents victory over sin and death through Christ’s resurrection. Such a beautiful reminder that our Savior is victorious over all!

The Empty Tomb: The Ultimate Symbol of Resurrection

The empty tomb remains one of the most potent symbols in Christianity. It signifies Jesus’ resurrection, confirming His Deity and fulfilling centuries-old prophecies.

The empty tomb also represents the promise of eternal life for those who believe in Christ. It is a reminder that death is not the end, but rather a doorway to everlasting life in the presence of God.

As I mentioned earlier, without the cross, there is no Easter, and the same goes for the empty tomb. Those are the two that give us the reason why we celebrate! He has risen!!

The Crown of Thorns:  A Symbol of Suffering and Love

crown of thorns Jesus

Though not as commonly associated with Easter, the crown of thorns is a powerful symbol that reminds us of Christ’s suffering and love for us.

The cruel crown of thorns placed on Jesus’ head before His crucifixion represents the weight of our sins that He willingly bore for our salvation.

It also serves as a reminder of the depth of His love for us, enduring such agony to redeem us and reconcile us with God.

Candles:  A Symbol of Christ’s Light

Candles are often used in Easter services and have deep spiritual significance. They symbolize the light of Christ, shining through the darkness to bring hope and salvation.

The lighting of candles during Easter also represents our individual revelation and acceptance of Jesus as the Light of the World. Just as He conquered death, His light can conquer any darkness in our lives.

Hot Cross Buns: Symbol of the Crucifixion

Hot cross buns have become a popular Easter treat, but they also have religious significance. The dough’s cross shape represents the crucifixion, while the spices symbolize the spices used to embalm Jesus’ body.

The traditional hot cross buns are marked with an icing or currants in the middle, representing Christ’s wounds on the cross.

What a beautiful way to remember and honor the ultimate sacrifice of our Savior.

Bread and Wine:  A Symbol of Communion


The act of taking communion is a powerful ritual in the Christian faith, symbolizing the Last Supper Jesus shared with His disciples before His crucifixion.

Bread symbolizes Christ’s body broken for our sins, and wine represents His blood shed for our redemption.

Through this simple yet powerful act, believers remember and celebrate Jesus’ sacrifice and are reminded of their salvation through His body and blood.

The Butterfly: A Symbol of New Life

Last but not least, the butterfly is often associated with Easter as a symbol of new life and resurrection.

white cross with blue butterfly

Just as a caterpillar transforms into a beautiful butterfly, so too does Jesus’ resurrection signify our transformation from sinners to redeemed children of God.

It is a reminder that through Christ’s death and resurrection, we have been given new life and the promise of eternal joy.

The Not-So-Religious Easter Symbols

If we don’t look at our faith, we see Easter as a place for Eggs, and the Easter Bunny with baskets of treats has become part of modern Easter celebrations.

The origins are pretty diverse, highlighting how Easter transformed from a serious religious practice to a “fun” holiday mixing old pagan traditions with Christian customs.

If I’m sincere, I’m not a fan of pagan gone Christian symbols. I have a hard time with it. I don’t judge those who decorate with eggs and bunnies, but I can’t connect Jesus to it. Sorry, not sorry.

But I do think it’s important that we understand these symbols as well and how many try to connect them to Christianity.

The Easter Egg

Easter eggs are said to be a symbol of rebirth and renewal. But the truth is they have their roots in ancient pagan fertility rituals.

In pre-Christian times, the egg was seen as a symbol of life and the changing of seasons. Fast-forward to modern times, and for some Christians, the egg now symbolizes the resurrection of Christ, a token of life and goodwill.

The Easter Bunny

easter bunny

The Easter Bunny is another mix of pagan culture and lore. A creature associated with the moon in many ancient cultures, it symbolized renewal.

However, its connection with Easter can be traced back to both Saxon and ancient Egyptian cultures, where the hare was a symbol of fertility. Much like eggs!

When these threads were woven into Christian Easter tradition, the Bunny hopped alongside the egg as a seasonal harbinger of new life.

Easter Baskets

The origins of Easter baskets are not as clear but can be traced back to the German custom of placing nests with colorful eggs in them. This tradition eventually spread, and now we have Easter baskets filled with chocolates and treats for children.

However, some Christians like to connect this tradition to Mary Magdalene’s basket, which she supposedly carried on her visit to Jesus’ tomb, finding it empty and filled with new life.

The Deeper Significance

Just to recap…here is a chart breaking down each symbol:

SymbolOriginSymbolic Meaning
The CrossChristian traditionSymbol of Christ’s sacrifice, redemption, and life
The LambJewish Passover tradition / Christian traditionSymbol of Christ as the innocent sacrifice for sins
The Easter LilyChristian traditionSymbol of purity, hope, renewal, and triumph over darkness
The Palm BranchJewish Tradition / Christian traditionSymbol of Christ’s triumphal entry into Jerusalem and victory over sin and death
The Empty TombBiblical account / Christian traditionSymbol of Christ’s resurrection and promise of eternal life
The Crown of ThornsBiblical account / Christian traditionSymbol of Christ’s suffering and love for humanity
CandlesChristian traditionSymbol of Christ as the Light of the World
Hot Cross BunsChristian traditionSymbol of Christ’s crucifixion and wounds
Bread and WineBiblical account / Christian traditionSymbol of Christ’s body and blood, and communion with Him
The ButterflyChristian traditionSymbol of new life and transformation through Christ’s resurrection
The Easter EggPagan TraditionSymbol of rebirth and renewal, later associated with Christ’s resurrection
The Easter BunnyPagan TraditionSymbol of fertility and renewal, later associated with Easter
Easter BasketsGerman traditionSymbolic of new life, sometimes associated with Mary Magdalene’s basket
Easter Symbols

Christian Easter symbols aren’t just old cultural stuff; they’re part of a living spiritual tradition that’s both universal and personal. They’re not just decorations – they’re like tools that guide believers through the powerful story of Christ’s resurrection, a story of endless love and divine help.

They also a great way to spark conversation about Jesus with children and unbelievers!

So, as we put up these special symbols at home in decor or in our Easter table setting, let it draw us closer to Christ and spark a hunger in those around us to know Christ as well.

Well, I hope you enjoyed learning about Easter symbols. Don’t forget to check out these other Easter articles below:

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