For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone;
The flowers appear on the earth;
the time of the singing of birds is come,
and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land;
The fig tree putteth forth her green figs,
and the vines with the tender grape give a good smell.
Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away.
(Song of Solomon 2:11-13)
Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God;Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel (II Timothy 1:8-10)
In the heathen glorification and deification of nature there lies a last, concealed longing for the lost paradise. It is the shadowy recollection of that state when “God saw all that he had made and lo it was very good.” (Adolph Köberle, The Quest for Holiness)
(the black speck in the center of the photo is an eagle)