Jesus And Birds – Birds Not Sowing

Acorn Woodpecker (Melanerpes formicivorus) with Hoard or Grainary WikiC

Acorn Woodpecker (Melanerpes formicivorus) with Hoard or Grainary WikiC

Wow! Where does time go? With all this craziness over the Coronavirus and the uneasiness of our country, time gets away from me. Maybe I need to listen to what Jesus was saying about not being anxious. This is the 4th mention of birds by the Lord while here on earth. 1st Cleansing Of Temple was the last in this series. That was back in May.

“For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? “Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they?” (Matthew 6:25-26 NASB) [emphasis mine]

Coppersmith Barbet (Megalaima haemacephala) ©WikiC Feeding

Coppersmith Barbet (Psilopogon haemacephala) ©WikiC Feeding

This time we have the much quoted, and taught, lesson about the feeding of birds of the air. Mathew 6:25-34 is a favorite passage of mine. The Lord encourages us to relax and put our trust in Him. LOOK!!! at the birds, I take great care of them. I WILL ALSO take great care of you!!

Clothes? Look how HE feeds and dresses the birds! Even the plants, are so beautiful.

“And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? “And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil nor do they spin, yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these.” (Matthew 6:27-29 NASB)

QUIT WORRYING!

“But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith!Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?‘ “For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.” (Matthew 6:30-32 NASB)

So, how do we quit worring, Look to Jesus and His Kingdom. First by accepting Him as our Savior, and then learning to trust fully in His care and provisions. No, the food won’t fall out of heaven, but the Lord will provide us the means of providing what we can. Then we need to depend on Him to provide whatelse we need. (Not always what we want)

“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. “So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” (Matthew 6:33-34 NASB)

Gospel Message

 

All God’s Creatures Got A Place In The Choir

Oriental Turtle Dove (Streptopelia orientalis) by Nikhil

Oriental Turtle Dove (Streptopelia orientalis) by Nikhil

Thought you might enjoy this:

“Give thanks unto the LORD, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the people. Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him, talk ye of all his wondrous works.” (1 Chronicles 16:8-9 KJV)

Savannah Sparrow singing by Ray

Savannah Sparrow singing by Raymond Barlow

“The pastures are clothed with flocks; the valleys also are covered over with corn; they shout for joy, they also sing.” (Psalms 65:13 KJV)

Tree Swallows Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge by jeremyjonkman on Flickr From Pinterest

“By them shall the fowls of the heaven have their habitation, which sing among the branches.” (Psalms 104:12 KJV)

Wood Storks in Top of Tree at Circle B

There are quite a few versions of this song on YouTube. This is just one of many.

Jesus And Birds – 1st Cleansing Of Temple

Doves in Cages ©WikiC

Back to our long-delayed series of “Jesus and Birds.” The last one, “Jesus and Birds – His Dedication was completed not long before everything changed. This Corvid-19 ordeal has left me a bit “discombobulated.” [Discombobulate is a fun, fancy word for “confuse.” If something has put you in a state where you don’t know up from down and you can’t spell your own name, you may be discombobulated.” – vocabulary.com] Anyway, thanks to Dr. Jim (J.J.S .Johnson) and William Wise for continuing to add articles for the blog.

When I first started looking into this cleansing of the Temple sellers, it appeared that there were two cleansings, yet there was a debate. Did Jesus cleanse the Temple once or twice? As you may remember, I am using a Harmony of the Gospels to trace the Lord Jesus’s reactions to birds while in His incarnated body. Here are some of the questions:

This first cleansing is only mentioned only by John.

“And the Jews’ passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem, And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting: And when he had made a scourge of small cords, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew the tables; And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father’s house an house of merchandise. And his disciples remembered that it was written, The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up.” (John 2:13-17 KJV)

The second cleansing is mentioned by the other three gospel writers, but not John.

Mathew 21:12-13, Mark 11:15-17, and Luke 19:45-46 [This will be covered in the 2nd Cleansing of Temple post.]

After checking many of the commentaries in the BibleGateway helps, even though Jesus spoke some of the same similar words, the belief is that there are two cleansings. I will cover more about this in the later post.

The main point is that when Christ entered the Temple area, sellers had set up for business. Worshipers needed animals and birds for sacrifices, but they were not supposed to be selling them inside the compound area. Had they been selling outside the area, there would not have been a problem.

In His disgust for what was going on, he threw over the tables, etc. and opened the cages of doves to let the go free.

Freedom – Bird leaving cage ©Pixabay

 

Laughing Is Good For The Soul

Kookaburra Lowry Park Zoo 12-31-15 by Lee

Laughing Kookaburra Lowry Park Zoo 12-31-15 by Lee

A friend sent me a message with a Kookaburra video. and was wondering if this is a Kookaburra. In response, I reminded her of these previous articles here. We all need to laugh and let off some of our pent up boredom, fustration, idleness, loneliness, or just Need A Good Laugh for our soul’s Well-being.

A merry heart maketh a cheerful countenance: but by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken. (Proverbs 15:13 KJV)

Meet Merlin, from the Orlando Sea World:

Here are some of the articles from the past with these good-natured birds:

Kookaburra – Chattery Birds With A Merry Heart – 2010

Ian’s Bird of the Week – Laughing Kookaburra -2011

Kookaburra Encounter – 2014

Tickle Me Tuesday Revived – Laughing Kookaburras – 2019

Kingfishers And Kookaburras – From Creation Moments – 2020

Kookaburra at Brevard Zoo by Dan

Laughing Kookabura Brevard Zoo

Laughing Kookabura Brevard Zoo

Lee and Kookaburra at Brevard Zoo by Dan

Have a great day, and may you keep a smile on your face and in your heart.

 

Chicken, Magpie, and Easter Greetings

*

“Christ is risen! He is risen indeed!” For centuries, Christians have used this greeting to celebrate Resurrection Day, better known as Easter.1 Ironically, there are two birds that can remind us of the historicity and importance of Christ’s rising from the dead, three days after His death and burial.

CHICKENS

Amazingly, the Lord Jesus once compared His own willingness and ability to care and protect humans to that of a chicken—specifically, a mother hen—who uses her own body to protectively care for her own hatchling baby chicks.2 How good it is to belong to the Lord Jesus Christ forever! When He offers to take us in and protect us, we should be eager and grateful to accept His care and security.

But we more closely associate a male chicken (rooster) with the arrest, trials, torture, and sacrificial death of Jesus Christ.

Readers might have already guessed that male chickens are associated with Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection because of the rooster who crowed after Peter ignominiously denied the Lord Jesus, thrice, in fulfillment of Christ’s prophecy.3 In fact, this incident is so important that it is reported by all four gospel writers.3

For example, Mark reports this disappointing failure of Peter, involving the tattletale fowl, a sad chapter in the life of the usually bold apostle: Peter’s triple failure to stand up for Christ, as predicted by Christ Himself. This display of Peter’s imperfect courage and loyalty (even though his inward belief never failed) is linked to the twice-crowing of a rooster.

A second time the rooster crowed. Then Peter called to mind the word that Jesus had said to him, “Before the rooster crows twice, you will deny Me three times.” And when he thought about it, he wept.4

What a sad note to end with! Except, as proven three days later, that wasn’t really the end.5

MAGPIES

Most people are unlikely to guess that magpies—such as the Australian magpie (Cracticus tibicen6)—can be associated with Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection. How so?

The most famous variety of this “butcherbird,” formerly called the “piping shrike” or “white-backed crow shrike,” is now called the white-backed magpie (Cracticus tibicen telonocua). But many call it the Australian magpie because it appears on the official state flag of South Australia.

Whatever you want to call it, it is famous for its flute-like call, entertaining with a complex repertoire of vocalizations. The black-and-white opportunist has habituated to human-dominated habitats, such as the agricultural fields of farms, gardens, and even wooded parklands.6

The Australian magpie is not timid. It will defend its territory against raptors trespassing therein, such as brown goshawks. The Australian magpie is not a picky eater. Its diet includes both plants and animals. Its preferred diet, however, is dominated by a variety of larval and adult invertebrates, such as insects (like ants, moths, beetles, bees, wasps, cockroaches) and arachnids (like spiders and stinger-wielding scorpions!), as well as earthworms and millipedes. The Australian magpie is also known to eat some small vertebrates, such as mice, skinks, frogs, and toads.6

Some compare the problem-solving resourcefulness and the brash cockiness of this bird to the national reputation displayed by many Aussie ex-patriots.

The Australian magpie is quite a clever problem-solver. It has been observed breaking off the stingers of bees and wasps before swallowing such dangerous bugs!7

By now you’ve likely guessed why this bird reminds us of Resurrection Day—the Australian magpie’s power to neutralize a dangerous stinger.

But insect or arachnid stingers are nothing compared to the powerful sting of death. Yet, Christ’s bodily resurrection on the third day defeated death’s “stinger.”

For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.” “O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?” The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.8

Hallelujah! Christ is risen! He is risen indeed!

References
1. Morris, H. M. 2006. Christ Is RisenDays of Praise. Posted on ICR.org April 16, 2006, accessed April 7, 2020.
2. Matthew 23:37; Luke 13:34. Cansdale, G. S. 1976. All the Animals of the Bible Lands. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 163-165.
3. Matthew 26:34, 26:74-75; Mark 14:30, 14:68-72; Luke 22:34, 22:60-61; John 13:38, 18:27.
4. Mark 14:72.
5. Matthew 12:39-40; 1 Corinthians 15:1-4Romans 10:9Psalm 16:9-10.
6. Taxonomists have also labeled the Australian Magpie as the Australian Magpie Gymnorhina tibicen (meaning “trumpeting bare-nose”). Regarding the physical and behavioral traits of the Australian Magpie, see Veltman, C. J., and R. E. Hickson. 1989. Predation by Australian Magpies (Gymnorhina tibicen) on Pasture Invertebrates: Are Non-territorial Birds Less Successful? Australian Journal of Ecology. 14(3): 319-326; Cake, M., A. Black, L. Joseph. 2018. The Generic Taxonomy of the Australian Magpie and Australo-Papuan Butcherbirds Is Not All Black and White. Bulletin of the British Ornithologists’ Club. 138(4): 346-359; Brown, E. D., and C. J. Veltman. 1987. Ethnogram of the Australian Magpie (Gymnorhina tibicen) in Comparison to Other Cracticidae and Corvus Species. Ethology (International Journal of Behavioural Biology). 76(4): 309-333. This author also appreciatively thanks Fiona Smith, M.C.Ed.—ICR SOBA graduate and Australian creation science educator/author—for her help with research and perspectives on Australian magpies.
7. Dr. Amy L. Adams notes: “Magpies will walk along the ground searching for food by overturning debris or probing their bills into the dirt. They eat insects, larvae and other invertebrates. Magpies are known to remove the stingers of wasps and bees before eating them.” Adams, A. 2016. Gymnorhina tibicen Australian MagpieMuseums Victoria Collections. Posted on collections.museumvictoria.com, accessed April 7, 2020.
8. 1 Corinthians 15:53-57, quoting Messianic prophecy in Hosea 13:14.

*Dr. Johnson is Associate Professor of Apologetics and Chief Academic Officer at the Institute for Creation Research.


James J. S. Johnson Articles Here

Article at I.C.R. https://www.icr.org/article/chicken-magpie-and-easter-greetings/

He Is Not Here!

“He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.” (Matthew 28:6 NKJV)

Like many of you, we watched our Easter Services via YouTube, or you may have watched by however your church chose to keep your members encouraged through watching/meeting for this Easter. This “Social Distancing,” is keeping us from our normal services, handshakes, and hugs from our friends. I miss my many friends.

Our pastor had a great message for today, and thought I would share it with you. Faith Baptist Church of Winter Haven has a YouTube site with all the services and additions we are not able to attend in person. I am thankful for these and want to share two of them here. This first one is the Easter Service today with our pastor.

This next one is the “Pastor Jerry’s Musings” He is one of our associate pastors. Enjoy!

He is Risen! He Has Risen Indeed!

The Gospel Message

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