“And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon him:” Mark 1:10
The reason for Jesus’ baptism was for him to be made “manifest to Israel” (John 1:31). When they saw that “the Spirit like a dove”, descended upon him, it was their sign that he was the Messiah! John 1:32, 33 goes on to say that God’s Spirit “abode upon him” and was “remaining on him”. Jesus later calls His disciples, sends them forth “as doves”, empowered with the Spirit for ministry too!
“Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.” Matthew 10:16
Believers too, should be “harmless as doves”; did you know that doves do not fight with each other? A dove’s only defense mechanism is to fly toward heaven, as should believers. This is why doves, almost universally, represent peace, and so should Christians. Doves are humble, lowly creatures that build their nests on the ground or in the “clefts of the rock” (Song of Solomon 2:14), representing our need to be humble and build their life on the Rock, Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 1:4). The book of The Song of Solomon beautifully describes the love story between Solomon (a type of Christ) and his special love (a type of the church). By comparing the two verses below, we see that both have “doves’ eyes”.
· “Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair; thou hast doves' eyes.” So. 1:15
· “His eyes are as the eyes of doves by the rivers of waters, washed with milk, and fitly set.” Song of Solomon 5:15
We are to have “doves’ eyes” and view the world through the eyes of God’s Spirit. Under the law, two “turtledoves” could be used as a sacrifice for sin instead of a lamb (Leviticus 5:7). Just as doves were sacrificial offerings; so our lives should be a “living sacrifice” (Romans 12:1). The first mention of a “dove”; is when Noah released a “dove” from the ark, after the flood (Genesis 8:8). The first mention of God’s “Spirit” occurs in Genesis 1:2 when “the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters”.
“And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.” Genesis 1:2
Both the “Spirit” and the “dove” are first found in the Bible, moving upon the face of waters! The Spirit moved on the face of the waters, working with God and Christ in the re-creation, the dove moved on the face of the waters to let Noah know that God’s judgment was over and peace now existed. Not only are doves peaceful, gentle, innocent, and pure, they have a tender disposition and a mournful coo. Doves are also very fruitful; they have the ability to reproduce their whole life!
Friend, are you “without form, and void”, or is there fruit in your life? Is there “darkness” in your heart or do you have the “light of the world”, Jesus (John 9:5), in there? Has the Spirit moved upon your life to make you a new creature and cause peace? If not, would you respond to the tender calling of the Spirit, as a dove, today? Peace can only exist after you answer the Spirit’s call; it is your “one hope”.
“There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;” Ephesians 4:4