Pantocrator, "almighty," is one of the many names of God used in the Bible. It refers to Christ as Sabaoth, "Lord of Hosts," the ruler of all, and the sustainer of the universe. This image of Christ is the most widely-used subject in all of Orthodox Christianity, appearing on the domes and iconostases of churches, as well as on panel icons in homes and chapels everywhere.
The Lord appears serious, sometimes even stern, but dispassionate as the eternal God. His right hand is raised in a gesture of blessing. As the Word Incarnate, He holds a Gospel book. When the book is open, it signifies Christ as the Teacher; when it is closed, He is the Judge, with the final verdict known only to Himself.
This icon of the Savior was painted by Saint Andrei Rublev about the year 1410. Over the centuries the icon was severely damaged, and only the central section with the Lord's face survives intact. Even so, the icon has a unique charm and the impeccable precision of the painting shines through 600 years of use.
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