Hawks and Hades


The small bird seemed to come out of nowhere. Like a Kamikaze pilot—zipping, diving, buzzing— he harassed the B-52 Bomber…a hawk.

No doubt, the bird had a nest nearby and he wasn’t going to tolerate the presence of a big and dangerous predator in his territory.

Standing on the paved path which connects several suburban neighborhoods, I watched the real-life drama play out for several minutes. Though I couldn’t identify the bird who  dive-bombed the hawk, he was persistent and untiring.

The hawk, though, kept making his slow, unperturbed circles. Each of his circles widened on the southward arc so that he gradually made his way into another neighborhood—and probably another bird’s territory. Mr. Hawk seemed to take these harassments in stride.

I once witnessed a hawk pluck one of the pigeons off my roof, fly it over to another roof and calmly begin to pluck the dead bird’s feathers all the while being mobbed by a flock of shrill, outraged pigeons.

We humans almost always identify the predator as bad.

But in God’s word, we read that Jesus proclaimed that the “gates of Hades” will not prevail against the truth of the gospel. (Matthew 16:18)

Surprisingly enough, that puts the Church in the position of the aggressor. The Church is the “hawk,” scoping out her next area of conquest. Not a conquest brought about by blood and savagery, but one of faithful ministry and testimony to a world that lives without the saving grace of Jesus. The “gate of Hades” does not come to us; we go to the gate…and use the battering ram of the gospel to knock down the defenses of the evil one.

As Believers, we need to stop viewing ourselves as weak and defenseless.

We are the members of Christ’s body, filled with God’s mighty power, who actively pursue those who run from God’s truth. We pursue them with acts of kindness, with our charity, with our prayers, and with our accounts of the love and faithfulness of Jesus.

We are hawks for God’s kingdom!

“Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations…” (Matt. 28:19 NIV Bible)

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