To the end of the age
In the recorded history of man, I believe ravens and doves were the first birds mentioned by name. In the Biblical account of Genesis chapter 8, Noah released a dove to see if it would find dry land. Doves are still with us today, and there are a number of species resident in different regions of the world. Some of the different breeds are so similar that, at a glance, they may appear to be the same. Where I grew up the Mourning Dove was the commonly seen dove, so when I see one now, that is usually my default identification. In fact, I had tentatively identified each of the birds below as such, and it wasn’t until I was post-processing the images in Lightroom that I recognized that they were all different.
Each of these birds has the same general coloration, but also each has very distinctive identification marks. I have not studied doves in detail, but I have noticed that they are normally pacifistic, in nature. Maybe this is why doves are often seen as symbols of peace. Again, the Bible paints them as gentle, attractive animals with highly regarded characteristics.
Today, on Easter Sunday, we Christians celebrate the resurrection of the Prince of Peace, our Savior, Jesus Christ. As the Biblical account of His life affirms, He was and is peace-loving, while at the same time He despises sin. Very shortly after He was raised from death, He spoke to the disciples, saying; “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Matt 28:18-20). There is a lot in this Scripture, and most Christians know it as the Great Commission. However, there is also a promise of assurance in His words for us. Jesus knew that there is a lot of danger when sending people across the country to evangelize and share His truth. While they wouldn’t necessarily be protected from harm and humiliation, having the knowledge that the presence of the Holy Spirit would be with them would allow them to tackle enormous challenges, perform astonishing miracles, and reside with Him when their time on Earth was done. As the dove has been with us throughout the age of mankind, the spirit of Jesus Christ is with us, and will be with us, for eternity. That same hope in the living Christ that fueled the fire in the souls of His early disciples, can fuel our hearts and souls also. The words of Bill and Gloria Gaither’s hymn states this message very well:
Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.
Because He lives, All fear is gone.
Because I know He holds the future,
And life is worth the living just because He lives.
- As yet they did not know the scripture, that Jesus must rise from the dead” (worryisuseless.wordpress.com)
- It Is Finished! (seashoremary.wordpress.com)
- Because He Lives (faithfulnibbles.wordpress.com)
- Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age (bummyla.wordpress.com)
- Day Ninety Five ~ Dove Love (mytown365.wordpress.com)