bird bible

by Kristen

It is unusual for me to recall my dreams when I wake up. But at 2:34 a.m. I woke from an incredibly vivid dream. A dream so specific I—in my jolted out of sleep state—jumped online to find out if my dream was true.

It wasn’t. But it kind of was.

In the dream I was telling a friend about my puzzlement over how I see hawks perched on streetlights over the freeway multiple times a week. I might have had a dozen hawk sightings near home in my first thirty years of life, so it intrigues me that in the last few years I’ve noticed a proliferation of hawks in suburbia.

Then in this dream conversation my friend said, “You know there’s a Bird Watcher’s Bible, right?”

As in a study Bible all about birds . . . I did not know. I pictured a large, leather-bound Bible with bird illustrations and statistics and habitat ranges in the margins next to the passages with bird references.

And that’s when I woke up.

I spent two-and-a-half seconds trying to figure out what awakened me before I googled “bird watching Bible.”

The first three entries were for National Geographic Bird-watcher’s Bible: A Complete Treasury. Close, but so not what my dream implied.

Then I scrolled down the first page of results and found a blog dedicated to “Birdwatching from a Christian Perspective” with sections such as Birds of the Bible, Bible Birds, Orni-Theology . . . even multiple posts about hawks.


At a respectable time of morning I resumed my search and found a number of books written about birds mentioned in the Bible,* as well as bird-watching guides for modern Israel. My casual ornithological interest is piqued.

I still don’t know why I see hawks surveying freeways . . . but birds in the Bible? Each sparrow and ostrich is significant.


*This dream was seven months ago. Being me, I obviously bought and read a couple of those books. One of them (An Eye on the Sparrow by Sally Roth) was fascinating! She’s a naturalist and a birder who threw herself into the research on Bible translation and original languages as well as migratory patterns of birds in the Middle East to figure out what birds the biblical authors really were writing about. I have a hunch she was trying to prove the Bible was inaccurate, but instead she proved the smallest details are laden with significance. It’s one of the most educational (both ornithologically and biblically) and most fun books I’ve ever read . . . and that’s saying something.


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