The fourth and final attribute of the Church is revealed through the eagle. An eagle testifies of swiftness (Deut. 28:49; Job 9:26; 2 Sam.1:23; Jer.4:13). It depicts a decision to ‘quickly’ choose a life led by the Spirit over a life led by the flesh. The eagle signifies our ability to follow the leading of the Lord (Deut. 32:11, 12). This attribute reveals that the Spirit is indeed willing (Mt. 26:41; Mk. 14:38), and the Body of Christ can know the heavenly dimension of God’s Spirit (Pr. 30:19; Isa. 40:31). An eagle dwells in the heights (Jer. 49:16), thus the Body of Christ lives in the heights of God and knows His presence and protection (Ex. 19:4). The testimony of the eagle is also that of devouring flesh (Hos.8:1; Hab.1:8; Mt.24:28). When God’s Spirit leads us, the flesh is consumed. Ezekiel saw the eagle as merely a face in the Old Covenant (Ezek. 1:10; 10:14), while John sees the Body of Christ with the character, nature, way, power, and authority of the eagle. The attribute of the eagle reveals the prophetic testimony of the Body of Christ as an example before others. Like the apostle Paul, we can say to others: “Follow me as I follow Christ” (1 Cor.4:16; 11:1; 2 Thes. 3:7, 9). The eagle is a testimony to the spiritual leadership of the Body of Christ as His ‘spiritual ones’! It is the attribute of being a son of God, led by His Spirit (Rom.8:14).
The first living creature around the throne of Christ is that of the lion. The attribute of the lion speaks of the condition of the Church to the enemy. We are the excellence of the praise of God in the earth and as His praise we exercise the victory of Christ over every enemy. The second creature around the throne of grace is that of a calf. This creature speaks of a sacrifice of service to the Creator. The testimony of the Church to God is one of worship, honor, and service to God, the Creator. The third creature around the throne has a face like the face of a man. It speaks of the face of the Church toward mankind. It is the human expression of God to the human image of God in the earth. We are to be servants of one another. The fourth attribute is that of an eagle. We are those who indulge in, and are led by, the Spirit of God in all things. We can lead others as we follow Christ.
A confirmation of the human nature of these four living creatures is seen in Revelation chapter 4, verse 8. Each of the creatures had six wings. The number six is the number signifying man, but these creatures are given access to heaven. They are each given wings to fly. They are the sent ones of God’s Spirit and they have been givenaccess to the realm of the Spirit. Again, these wings are seen being “full of eyes around and within”. This testifies to their intimate relationship with God and with each other as members of the Body of Christ. Who they are is a testimony of their revelation of who God is and who they are in Him. Each can hear God and each one is led by God’s Spirit (Rom. 8:14). All are ministers of GRACE and are no longer under the Law (Gal. 5:18). The Body of Christ forever lives before the presence of God and is thus a priesthood of believers in Christ. They cry, “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, who was and is and is to come!” “Holy, holy, holy” is a term associated with the priest’s clothing or ‘outward testimony’ (Ex. 28:36; 39:30). These are God’s people, the true Israel of God (Jer. 2:3). They are a people of God’s choosing (Zech. 14:20, 21). This is the same testimony heard from the seraphim in the vision of Isaiah (Isa. 6:3). They are the “burning ones” (seraphim) seen as the sent ones of the ministry of reconciliation (Isa. 6:1-8; 2 Cor. 5:20, 21). Seraphim are a testimony of their earthly ministry, while cherubim are a testimony to their heavenly position and authority in Christ. “Holy, holy, holy” is a term reserved for God’s chosen, holy people!
The four living creatures are seen giving glory, honor, and thanks to the Lord. As they minister before the Lord the twenty-four elders cast their crowns before Him (Rev.4:9-11). They give all of the fruit of their labor to Jesus and recognize Him as King, worthy of all honor, glory, and power (1 Tim. 1:17; Heb. 3:3).These twenty-four elders depict the worship of Jesus by the headship of the Church. That headship is also the eternal foundation of the Church (Eph. 1:22, 23; 3:21; Col. 1:18).
The first condition of living in the New Covenant is seen: The Body of Christ is to live in and from the presence of Jesus on His throne, ascribing all glory and honor to Him. Jesus receives the supreme headship of the Church in the story of all men!
Food For Thought,
Ted J. Hanson
Exerts from:Christ Unveiled, Chapter 3
Order this book today at our online bookstore
Please consider helping me reach the nations with the message of New Covenant Life and Grace. Prayer and finances are needed for the task to be accomplished that is before us.
Thank you to all of you who have partnered with me in prayer and support. More resources are being developed and we are moving forward with reaching the nations with the message of New Covenant Life and Grace. Many doors of influence have opened for House of Bread Ministry. I need your help to do all that is before me.
Donations can be made at the above right link or mail your donation to House of Bread Ministry, 3210 Meridian St., Bellingham, Wa. 98225.