WHAT IS THE SIGNIFICANCE OF ANCHORS?
Anchors are a symbol of hope. This truth was significant in the early church when it was experiencing persecution. Discoveries in the catacombs of Rome revealed etchings of anchors. These areas were where Christians held services in secret. This symbol was a disguised cross which served as a marker to lead the believers to the hidden area of worship. The catacombs were located beneath the ancient city. There are 600 miles of these tomb-like burial chambers. They “served a a place of refuge during perilous times of persecution.” [Biblical Counseling Library] Anchors are used in these days on some tombstones today. It means “guaranteed hope for the eternal security of true Christians.” [Ibid.] Note Proverbs 1:33.
- They are objects connected to a boat or ship by a long chain or heavy line. The purpose of these anchors was to hold a ship in place once it is docked. It is securely fastened to the water’s flooring to hold down such vessels as an oilrig. Some anchors stabilize or slow down a vessel.
- The English word is a translation of a Greek word derived from ankos. This word means “curve.” [Vine, Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary, s.v. “Anchor.”] Anchors are curved so they could hook onto a solid base.
- When speaking of anchors as a symbol of the sea, they represent hope and steadfastness.
- They are often Christian symbols representing Christ, who provides security for believers, holding them secure no matter what the battle or storm may be.
This brings to mind Paul’s trip in the sea during a storm with hurricane-force winds. They used four anchors in that storm. They hoped to not drift far off course. They hoped the anchors would save their lives. Note Acts 27:29.