In the concluding part of the series on the similarities between a Dove and the Holy Spirit, today we come to two more distinctive attributes in a dove.
Where gentleness pervades, can happy fellowship be far away? The early Church swayed by the Holy Spirit was known for the frequency of its prayer meetings, fostering happy fellowship (Acts 2:42) in the process. While avian researchers affirm that Doves are highly social birds, the Scriptures also point to the fact that doves live as a happy community together (Is 60:8). Even in one of our Church benedictions…do not we see the words fellowship and Holy Spirit going together (2 Cor 13:14)? While cottage prayer meetings in Lenten season are good, there is nothing prohibiting any Church to have cottage prayer meetings throughout the year. Nothing quite like frequent fellowshipping to grow in the Lord, like the 1st century Church!
Oh how the Psalmist wishes to have the wings of a Dove to fly away speedily from all the dangers (Ps 55:6-7) surrounding him! Ask any panting and puffing predator bird, which has tried
chasing a dove, and it would vouch for the latter’s speed…gasping, if I may add. Once again, let me bring the findings of the avian scientists, into the picture. They affirm, that doves can touch a fantastic speed of 55 miles per hour in full flight (is it any coincidence…Psalm 55…sic)! The early Christians, “on the move”, always under the direction of the ever agile Holy Spirit, would also vouch for the speed, He led them from place to place. Ask a certain Phillip…(Acts 8:39-40). WOW…Road to Gaza to Azotus in an instant and then all the way to Caesearea. Say Christian, are you lethargic?
Now coming to a different subject, intertwined with that of the dove in Matt 3:16. Should not the fact of Jesus’ baptism by immersion “bury” all the doubts surrounding the Baptism procedure? Without intending to stir the hornet’s nest, I want to affirm once again that our Lord’s example of taking baptism by immersion should be the guiding principle on all debates, on which kind of Baptism is acceptable to God. Even here, care should be taken to check to the best extent possible as to whether a person has genuinely accepted Christ, before one enters the Baptismal waters, lest it (baptism) be reduced to a process of merely transforming “a dry sinner” into “a wet hypocrite”.
Prayer: Father enable us always to relish Christian fellowship even while being ever-agile and alert in Your Ministry. In Jesus’ Name. Amen
J and SM Ministries
(To access the entire “Dovetailing Some Dove Facts” mini-series, please click here.)