Why death is signified by a bird flying out of a cage


Numerous signs illustrate death in Christian art. Have you seen this one?

There are lots of signs utilized in Christian art to illustrate death, and among those signs is a bird flying out of a cage.

This sign can be seen in a range of Christian art work, and is influenced by the following verse from Psalm 68.

Thou didst ascend the high install,
leading hostages in thy train,

and getting presents amongst guys,
even amongst the defiant, that the Lord God might stay there.

Psalm 68:18

The image from this Psalm is of God leading the “hostages” to the heights of Paradise.

Human life in the world in Christian spirituality is frequently referred to as a “jail,” and release is often compared to Moses leading the country of Israel out of the captivity of Egypt, into the Promised Land.

While in the world we are limited by our bodies and our fallen humanity, in Paradise we will be really totally free and totally unified with God.

In some cases death can be seen in an unfavorable light, however by utilizing the image of a bird flying from a cage, we can see the liberating power of death to join us to God for all eternity.


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