The idiom “a bird’s eye view” means to see from above as opposed to a “dog’s eye view” which is ground level. As bird lovers will tell you there is a profound difference between the two. On the fifth day that God created the birds to fly above the earth across the expanse of the sky, he created many, two of which are the eagle and the swallow. Whereas the eagle never feeds upon carrion but seeks live prey, is fearless and tenacious, the timid swallow feeds upon the wing, across the expanse of the sky to catch insects. It prefers the habitats of men, where insects are plentiful and often chooses the most extraordinary places for its nests. In Psalm 84, the psalmist reflects that it was in the Temple this wee bird has found a protected refuge high above in the sheltered eves where it literally has the privilege of a ‘bird’s eye view’ of the comings and goings, the words spoken at the altar, hearing and seeing all of the rote day after day view of the animal sacrifices, the songs of the choirs as they echo across the courtyard, the smells of the meat as it is consumed. What a view! It must be marvelous notes the psalmist! While only the priest has the “dog’s eye view” or ground level view, and I as a worshiper do not even see this, the swallow has it all! He passionately wishes for a moment that he too could reside as the swallow in the courts of the Lord’s temple.
While the psalmist has this wish for just a moment to be as the swallow so that he could see within, we as believers, because of the perfect sacrifice of our savior who tore the curtain asunder from top to bottom, can now not only view the courtyard but also the Holy of Holies. We do not need to just be a swallow with a bird’s eye view but now we have the totality of the very presence of the living God–used only here in Ps 84 and Ps 42:2. It was only the High Priest once a year that could enter this sacred place but now we are given the privilege to enter boldly. Heb 10:19 “Therefore, brothers and sisters, since we have confidence to enter the sanctuary by the blood of Jesus,… let us draw near” into the very presence of the living God. In this we are most blessed, blessed beyond that of the swallow, blessed beyond this worshiper, blessed beyond the High Priest. Standing at the entrance to the temple of God to the His very presence is beyond comparison. The psalmist had only the hope, but we have the reality all because we have chosen to trust in Him. It is there that He the Mighty God Almighty bestows favor upon us as we choose to walk blamelessly.
As you worship today consider the view that is yours because of the sacrifice Jesus paid.