The Heavenly Dove
“And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.” John 1:32
Christ is our example in all things. In response to His prayer to His Father, heaven was opened, and the Spirit descended like a dove and abode upon Him. The Holy Spirit of God is to communicate with man, and to abide in the hearts of the obedient and faithful. Light and strength will come to those who earnestly seek it in order that they may have wisdom to resist Satan, and to overcome in times of temptation. We are to overcome even as Christ overcame.
Jesus opened His public mission with fervent prayer, and His example makes manifest the fact that prayer is necessary in order to lead a successful Christian life. He was constantly in communion with His Father, and His life presents to us a perfect pattern which we are to imitate. He appreciated the privilege of prayer, and His work showed the results of communion with God. Examining the record of His life, we find that upon all important occasions He retired to the grove, or to the solitude of the mountains, and offered earnest, persevering prayer to God. He frequently devoted the entire night to prayer just before He was called upon to work some mighty miracle. During these nightly seasons of prayer, after the labors of the day, He compassionately dismissed His disciples, that they might return to their homes for rest and sleep, while with strong crying and tears He poured forth earnest petitions to God in behalf of humanity.
Jesus was braced for duty and fortified for trial through the grace of God that came to Him in answer to prayer. We are dependent upon God for success in living the Christian life, and Christ’s example opens before us the path by which we may come to a never-failing source of strength, from which we may draw grace and power to resist the enemy and to come off victorious. On the banks of Jordan Christ offered prayer as the representative of humanity, and the opening heaven and the voice of approval assures us that God accepts humanity through the merits of His Son.
E. G. White, Ye Shall Receive Power, p. 14