It has been said that Benjamin Franklin thought the wild turkey, instead of the eagle, would be a more fitting symbol of America because he thought the turkey to be “a much more respectable bird” and “a true original native of America.” I’m really glad that did not happen. I would have hated for America’s battle cry to be, “gobble, gobble.”
Did you know that the eagle is mentioned 34 different times in the Bible? They live for about 30 to 50 years. The larger eagles have a 7 to 8-foot wingspan and have been clocked at speeds of up to about 200 mph. They mate for life and raise their young together. Typically they will build their nest in a very high place and, then, they will add to it every year. (The largest recorded bald eagle nest, located in St. Petersburg, Florida, was 9.5 feet in diameter, 20 feet deep, and weighed almost 3 tons.) Not only are they fast, but the eagle’s eyesight is unlike any other. At an elevation of 10,000 feet (or about 2 miles), the eagle can see a rabbit in the forest and, within a matter of seconds, that eagle, at a rate of over 100 mph, can snatch up that rabbit.
The eagle has the shape of a weight lifter—a powerful chest, a narrow waist, and powerful thighs. They have been known to kill animals weighing 50 pounds. Eagles have a wingspan up to 8 feet and can weigh as much as twenty pounds. The eagle’s size and strength is not derived from a diet of dead or rotten meat. The eagle prefers a diet of fresh meat, a diet of high protein.
Application: We need to learn not to feast on the dead, rotten things of this world but, instead, to feast daily upon the pure, fresh Word of God.
Jeremiah 15:16 Your words were found, and I ate them, And Your word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart; For I am called by Your name,O Lord God of hosts.
An eagle has 3 sets of eyelids. Two of them are like ours, but one closes from side-to-side. This one is like a pair of sunglasses for the eagle, with amazing polar ability. The good thing about this is, that when they are being attacked, they can fly straight toward the sun and their enemies can’t see them because of the sun.
Application: When we have problems, if we would go to the Son, He would blind the enemy.
Matthew 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Needing Each Other
There are times when an eagle may be sick or hurt, and it will go to a high rock and stay. Many times, out of the sky, meat will begin to fall. Other eagles who, too, have gone through similar issues, begin to provide substance for the eagle. Because of them, this eagle will not die, but live.
Application: God never intended for us to live life alone that is why we have Scriptures such as “Bear ye one another’s burdens,” “pray one for another.”
Learning to Fly
When training their small ones to fly, they will first try to push them out of their nest. (Their nests are always in a high place, usually at the cleft of a rock or the top of a tree.) If that doesn’t work, mom may place the small one on her back and head towards the sun. At about 7,000 to 8,000 feet she will turn upside down so the little one will fall. Dad will be watching and slowly descending, staying about 1,000 feet away; but if the child doesn’t fly, then, at the last moment, he will swoop down and catch that small one before it hits the ground.
Application: You can’t fall fast enough that the Heavenly Father can’t catch you.
Ps 40:1-2 I waited patiently for the LORD; And He inclined to me, And heard my cry. 2He also brought me up out of a horrible pit, Out of the miry clay, And set my feet upon a rock, And established my steps.
Where They Stay
The eagle will spend over 75% of its time in the high places. It is there that the air is purer, without all the fog and mists of the earth beneath her. The eagles often have a clearer vision of what is going on, with their being in the high places. In these high places, they will not hear all the noise that is distracting in the low places.
Application: When we spend our time in high places with God (prayer, His Word), we will have a different view of our problems in life. We should always be aiming for the high ground.
As Christians, we must decide whether we want to be an eagle or a vulture. Are we going to feast on the fresh meat or the dead things? Are we going to follow the crowd, as many birds do, or will we take the path that God has called us to? Will we get down in the low places with the world around us, or will we decide to fly in the high places, where we are our closest to God? These are choices that you and I make every day. We must choose well.