It is a large bird, considerably larger than the crow; and its feathers
are very black, very glossy, and very beautiful. People in ancient times seem to
have liked a black color, and were especially pleased with black hair; so we
read in the Song of Solomon, where one who is beautiful is described, "His locks
are bushy, and black as a raven."
The raven drives out its young ones very early from the
nest, almost before they are able to seek their food. This may explain a verse
in the Psalms, "The Lord giveth to the beast his food, and to the young ravens
which cry;" and another in Job, "Who provideth for the raven his food ? when his
young ones cry unto God, wandering for lack of meat."
Our Savior speaks of this
bird in the 12th chapter of Luke, "Consider the ravens; for they neither sow nor
reap; they have neither store-house nor barn; and God feedeth them." He was
speaking to his disciples, and it was as much as to say, "If God takes care of
the ravens, he will certainly take care of you; so you need not be anxious or
Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither
storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than
the birds!" (Luke 12:22-24 RSV)
The Raven was an unlikely and unusual instrument of God's care and mercy.
Consider the Word of God concerning the Prophet Isaiah while he was fleeing
persecution...I KINGS 17:2-6.
because only God in his grace and mercy could use such a creature in a
productive way to bring a blessing to the needy one that is beloved of God. The
Raven is unworthy of such an honorific assignment ...just like us.
Even so, God still uses the creature as an instrument of His love.
The Raven is a constant reminder of who we were, and by God's grace, who we are
now. Because of Christ each of us can say " I am an instrument in the hand of
God to be used for His glory" It is a privilege that none of us deserve. It is
solely due to the work that He has dome (and continues to do) in each of us that
makes anything good in us possible. See -Romans
8:7 Romans 5:10,11
God's Word is a balm to our short-sighted, fearful minds ...God still cares for
the Raven and his family and supplies all their needs ... and He still does.
Question... Job 38:41 “Who prepares for the raven its nourishment when its young
cry to God and wander about without food?
Answer... Luke 12:24 Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap; they
have no storeroom nor barn, and yet God feeds them; how much more valuable you
are than the birds!
Christ used ravens in a lesson about setting priorities in life - obey God
first, foremost and always; then take care of worldly needs.
Martin Luther wrote: "You see,
he is making the birds our school masters and teachers. It is a great and
abiding disgrace to us that in the Gospel a helpless sparrow should become a
theologian and a preach to the wisest of men. We have as many teachers and
preachers as there are little birds in the air. Their living example is an
embarrassment to us. Everyday he feeds and nourishes innumerable little birds out of His
God feeds the birds but not like you feed our pet animals. He provides food but
they must gather it up (Psa. 104:27-28). Jesus was specific in naming one type
of bird -- the Raven. He said, "Consider the ravens..." (Luke 12:24). The ravens must go and collect the food that God provides (Job
38:41; Psa. 147:9).
We have faith but we must do our part. The birds show us that faith and works
can and do go together.
The central theme of Christ's
teaching is how God uses the lesser to establish the
greater. He tells us we are much better than the birds. He
condescends so low as to take thought for the needs of these
little creatures as a tender, loving Father; He looks upon
all these small details, not forgetting one, then asks us
why we should be anxious about ourselves. We know God takes
care of us because we are much better than they. If He
condescends so low as to tend to such small things, why
would He overlook the greater things?
Anxiety about anything that
is outside of our control is the sin of unbelief. We
need to focus on what we do with our time today while asking
the Lord's guidance. That is the key.
We don't need anxiety about
the future; we need to learn the lesson the Israelites
learned when they gathered manna day after day. They learned
what it meant to eat daily out of the hand of the Lord.
Those are blessed lessons. I am not a stranger to them. It
is a blessed thing when we understand what it is to look to
the Lord for His provision for today. Tomorrow we look to
His provision for tomorrow.
The Greek word from which the
word better was taken is diaphero which means
"To be of more value." The word diaphero is
translated as "better" three times in the New Testament. Our
text is one: "Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not,
neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your
heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better [diaphero]
than they?" MAT 6:26.,
The meaning is, "Of more
value." Wherein do we have more value than those innocent
little creatures? Jesus speaks of them in terms of value in
MAT 10:29- 31, "Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing?
and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your
Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.
Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many
Let's consider how Christ restored the
purpose of God in our human nature; for God to accept us in Christ, it was
necessary for Christ to be very man. He became the image of God in our human
nature. HEB 1:3 speaks of Jesus, "Who being the brightness of his glory [of the
Father], and the express image of his
person, and upholding all things by the word of his
power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on
the right hand of the Majesty on high."