The moment Jesus came up out of the baptismal waters, the skies opened up and he saw God’s Spirit—it looked like a dove—descending and landing on him. And along with the Spirit, a voice: “This is my Son, chosen and marked by my love, delight of my life.”
“And it came to pass at the end of forty days, that Noah opened the window of the ark which he had made: And he sent forth a raven, which went forth to and fro, until the waters were dried up from off the earth. And he sent forth a dove from him, to see if the waters were abated from off the face of the ground; But the dove found no rest for the sole of her foot, and she returned unto him into the ark, for the waters were on the face of the whole earth: then he put forth his hand and took her and pulled her in unto him into the ark. And he stayed yet other seven days; and again he sent forth the dove out of the ark; And the dove came into him in the evening; and lo in her mouth was an Olive leaf plucked off: So Noah knew the waters were abated from off the earth. And he stayed yet other seven days and sent forth the dove; which returned not again unto him any more”(Gen 8:6-12)
What has Noah got to do with Jesus? Let’s follow the story.
The ‘great Flood’ is a typology of the “judgment” which punished every living thing on earth. After the rain, Noah wondered if the flood waters had dried up. So he sent a ‘raven’ to find. The ‘raven’ was a bird that fed on the dead and dry flesh. If the raven did not return, Noah would realizes that there is death all around. Noah then chose a dove. The dove on the other would fetch Noah an “olive tree”. In other words it looks for life. When he let out the dove the first time, it found no rest and returned unto him as the waters had yet to recede. There was death all around – the waters are symbol of God’s judgment. The dove could not find rest the judgment.
After seven days, Noah sent the ‘dove’ again. This time it brought forth an ‘Olive leaf’. And Noah knew the waters were receding but was not completely dry. The olive leaf is a symbol of peace and life. The second time, Noah set out the dove, it found rest as the land was finally dry. The dove rested knowing that the judgment is over and the peace of God had begun.
Dear friends, the raven is a picture of the Law, it looks for death and feeds on it. It was necessary for Jesus as such to be one with the Law in his baptism; hence it is to fulfill all righteousness. In his baptism, he became one with us in our death –showing this is a shadow of what would have happen 3 years later on a cross.
As he rose thereafter, John tells that the Spirit descended on Jesus among the waters and rested there. Ephesians 2:14 tells us Jesus is our peace. The Lord was baptized in humanity’s death in order to become the judgment of God for us. He was placed into the waters which we had deserved. As Jesus came out from the waters, the Spirit of God rested upon him like a dove. The “dove” found peace and rest in Jesus. In Jesus, there is no more judgment.
Today the same Spirit no longer hovers over you but is now resting in you. You are no longer hounded by a raven but indwell by Jesus. He has become one with you, in Spirit and through the communion in body too.The Spirit is the Spirit of righteousness not condemnation.
Dears friends, if you had read the verse for today carefully, it says God along with the Spirit says… Dear friends, so long the Spirit rests upon some one, God along with the Spirit will say ““This is my Son, chosen and marked by my love, delight of my life.” That person is you.
Thought of the day
The dove rested on you, not the raven.