As you will realise this sabbatical is not just about birding! I also intend to spend some time thinking about Birds and the Bible.
The whole idea came from the Anglican Priest and Author Dr John Stott who wrote a small book called “The Birds Our Teachers: Biblical Lessons from a Lifelong Bird Watcher.” As you will realise from the title John Stott has been a lifelong Birder. In that book he wrote.
“Jesus himself referred to birds in his famous Sermon on the Mount. According to the old English version he said ‘consider the fowls of the air’, but in basic English this is a command to ‘watch birds’. When Martin Luther, the great 16th century reformer, got to this verse in his commentary on the Sermon on the Mount, he became quite lyrical. He wrote: ‘Let the little birds be your theologians … We have as many teachers and preachers as there are little birds in the air’. So I’ve sometimes said in rather jocular fashion that I’m developing a new science called ‘orni-theology’, – the theology of birds.”
It is this “Orni-theology” that I want to spend some time over the next few weeks studying!