Christ, the central figure of the icon, is robed in white to show His divinity. The aureole (elongated halo) around Him also symbolizes this brilliant Light. At His feet are the demolished gates of Hades (in some icons these gates are the coffin lids of Adam and Eve and are depicted as a Cross on which Christ stands), with their broken keys and locks. Christ holds the hands of Adam (Heb: man) and Eve (Heb. Life), depicted to his right and left, as he pulls them from their tombs. Adam is in old man, recalled to his primordial innocence; Eve is also depicted as elderly, and is set free from her sin in Eden by the Incarnation. Behind Christ are aligned the Righteous of the Old Testament (to the left, including Solomon and David) and the New Testament (to the right, including John the Baptist and Joseph the Guardian).
The aureole depicts that this icon is a dogmatic icon. There were no eyewitnesses to the resurrection. The only “proof” as such was an empty tomb. Some said, “They stole His body.” Others said, “He is Risen.” How one sees the tomb in other words depends on more that brute physical fact, in our case the encounter with the Risen Christ — just as the Apostles experienced and testify to us.