[Note: Material gleaned from other sources than myself]
Eagle Saints: An Endangered Species – Message #2
More Than Conquerors
Isaiah 40:31, Romans 8:31-39
When the eagle is first born, he is one of the two ugliest creatures on the face of the earth; their soft white down that covers the eaglet is highlighted with raccoon type eyes that are covered with black down. He has awkward wings and feet and legs that are far out of proportion with the rest of his body. There is only one creature in the world uglier than the eaglet. All of this ugly is going to stay with him until a change takes place in his life. This is known as the post-fledgling period and it lasts until about the time of the first hunting expedition or about a year. Throughout this period, the old saying, “he has a face that only a mother could love” holds a great deal of meaning.
By the end of that period the ugly white down and the raccoon eyes have disappeared and have been replaced with brown freckled feathers. Each year now for the rest of his life he will go through a process known as ‘molting.’ During this time his feathers are replaced and he becomes more beautiful. For the golden eagle and the bald eagle, each time they molt, they grow a circle of different colored feathers around the neck, gold on the gold eagle and white on the bald eagle. God knew that wrapped up in all that ugly there was a majestic creature with the capability to soar higher than any other bird. The eagle overcame the ugly.
That’s what happened to us when we came to know Christ as Lord and Savior. Before then we were nothing but ugly sinners. When we trusted Christ we began a maturation process which began to bring us out of the ugly.
Titus 2:11-12 teaches us that there are some definite and decided changes that take place immediately upon accepting Christ which include: denying ungodliness and worldly lust. Loving soberly and righteously and godly in this present world. Just the fact of trusting Christ by faith has made us more than conquerors. Now, like the eagle, we must continue to grow. We are more than conquerors in four ways; through salvation, storms, struggles, and the summation of life.
I. We are more than Conquerors through the Lord’s Salvation.
When Paul wrote to the Corinthians he included a long list of sinners that ranged from fornication to extortioners. But in chapter six and verse eleven he said, “and such were some of you, but now you are washed, ye sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the spirit of God.”
Loosely paraphrased that says you have been given power over sin in your life through the divine nature that has been imparted unto you by the Holy Spirit and the power of sin in our lives has been conquered. The word ‘conquerors’ in the Greek means ‘to vanish beyond’. Literally what that means is that we have been moved from one position and placed in another.
There are a lot of people who attend church fairly regularly and present themselves as eagles when in essence they are only vultures in disguise. You will be distinguished by the life you live and the company you keep. You see the old saying; ‘birds of a feather flock together’ has some merit here. Vultures cannot stay in the presence of eagles very long at a time and they have to leave. Eagle saints are more than conquerors through salvation because of the power given them over sin.
II. We are more than Conquerors through Life’s Storms.
Most animals can sense when a storm is brewing and they instinctively seek shelter. But the eagle is different from any other animal. He sits on the side of his nest and waits for the storm. And with his eyesight he can see the storm coming long before any other animal. The high winds begin to blow yet he is still unafraid and unmoved. He just sits there. When the first drops of rain begin to fall he mounts the wind, locks his wings into an ascending position and using the strong winds that others have fled from, he begins an upward spiral. Each circle carries him higher and higher until he breaks through the cloud cover and on he is soaring above the storm.
That mother eagle, though she desires to follow her mate, will stay with the nest if there are young eaglets there. She knows that no matter how ugly they are, they need guidance and protection until they are able to leave the nest. After that if they act like vultures, there’s not much she can do about it. The lesson we can all learn from that as parents is that the only time we know what our children are doing is when they are in our sight. And there are no exceptions to this rule. But through the storm, that mother eagle sits on that nest and spreads her 6-10 feet wings over the entire brooding area covering the eaglets. Through the storm those little eaglets know nothing but perfect peace and protection.
What does this say to us as eagle saints?
- It tells us that there will definitely be storms in our lives. These people who preach a health, wealth and prosperity gospel are not reading the same bible I read.
- It tells us that sometimes we will be able to soar above the storms. Other times we will be forced to sit through the storms. Either way, we experience perfect peace and protection and the promise that God has made us more than conquerors through the blood of Jesus Christ as we allow him to lift us above it or lead us through it. The Psalmist said it this way, ‘He shall cover thee with His feathers, and under His wings shalt thou trust…’ We are more than conquerors through the storms.
III. We are more than Conquerors through Life’s Struggles.
Sometimes we get burdened down with life’s struggles and we feel as if we are caught in a web. If you have ever walked into a spider web and felt it stretch across your face you know that the more you struggle to free yourself the tighter the web gets. Nevertheless we continue to struggle under the tension or burden of the web.
Well of you have ever hunted or hiked in the woods and you walked into a web, it didn’t take you long to learn that the best way to get out of a web is to stop. Back up 2 steps, then tear down the web and proceed.
The analogy here is that we use the God-given abilities as Christians to get out of the struggles. Think of the eagle’s ability to fly. He never struggles to fly. He uses the wisdom, wings and wind that God gave to him to accomplish his goal. When he does this, life is more of a blessing than a burden. There is more soaring than struggling.
The same is true for the eagle saint. When we do as the scripture and the spirit of God we can humble (ourselves) under the mighty hand of God and cast all our care upon him for he cares for us. We are more than conquerors through our life’s struggles.
IV. We are more than Conquerors through Life’s Summation.
If there was ever an eagle saint, I feel all of us would agree that it was the Apostle Paul. Yet as he came to the end of his ministry he could write, ‘for now I am ready to be offered and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight. I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will give me at that day: and not to me only, but to all them that love his appearing.’ Even death is a victory for the saint for Christ has conquered the last enemy, which is death.
There are two requirements for being an eagle saint.
- You must be saved. Jesus told Nicodemus, “Ye must be born again…except a man be born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
- You must be surrendered. An eagle can only soar when he is dependent on the wind. It is not his own ability and power that carries him to those tremendous heights. It is the winds that God provides. The eagle saint must surrender to the power of their Holy Spirit.