Why if you be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are you subject to ordinances,…
Let me tell you again my old story of the eagle. For many months it pined and drooped in its cage, and seemed to have forgotten that it was of the lineage of the old plumed kings of the forest and the mountain; and its bright eye faded, and its strong wings drooped, and its kingly crest was bowed, and its plumes were torn and soiled amid the bars and dust of its prison-house. So, in pity of its forlorn life, we carried its cage out to the open air, and broke the iron wire and flung wide the lowly door; and slowly, falteringly, despondingly, it crept forth to the sultry air of that cloudy summer noon and looked listlessly about it. But just then, from a rift in an overhanging cloud, a golden sunbeam flashed upon the scene. And it was enough. Then it lifted its loyal crest, the dim eye blazed again, the soiled plumes unfolded and rustled, the strong wings moved themselves, with a rapturous cry it sprang heavenward. Higher, higher, in broader, braver circles it mounted toward the firmament, and we saw it no more as it rushed through the storm-clouds and soared to the sun. And would, O ye winged spirits! who dream and pine in this poor earthly bondage, that only one ray from the blessed Sun of Righteousness might fall on you this hour! for then would there be the flash of a glorious eye and a cry of rapture, and a sway of exulting wings, as another redeemed and risen spirit sprang heavenward unto God!
(C. Wadsworth, D. D.).
Parallel VersesKJV: Wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances,