Look For Cicada Spiritual Meaning In The Bible

Biblically, locust are the harbingers of God’s wrath, capable of wreaking havoc on crops and causing chaos. In Contrast, Cicadas lead a more localized existence, emerging and laying eggs in trees. Although not found in Bible passages, the cicada’s life cycle reveals remarkable lessons on spiritual renewal and transformation. Let’s explore the captivating noisy world of Cicada Spiritual Meaning in the Bible.

cicada spiritual meaning in the bible

Cicada Symbolism Through History

Cicadas have long been a symbol of spiritual renewal and change in many cultures.

Eastern Philosophy

During the Han dynasty, cicada-shaped jade figurines were placed in the mouths of the deceased, symbolizing transformation and renewal. This practice reflected Eastern beliefs in resurrection and eternal life, emphasizing the cycle of rebirth and the hope for everlasting existence.

Cicada Mythology in Ancient Greece

Ancient Greek mythology tells of men so captivated by singing that they were transformed into cicadas by the Muses. This transformation symbolizes dedication and vigilance in Greek culture, highlighting the importance of devotion and artistic expression.

Native American Perspectives and Spiritual Themes

The buzzing noise of cicadas carries profound meaning for Native Americans in the American Southwest. In Hopi mythology two cicadas, known as maahu, played flutes, resembling the loud songs of cicada and brough them out from “fourth world’ into the Grand Canyon. Interestingly, as part of the narrative of renewal, these cicadas were revived after being pierced by eagle arrows, symbolizing themes of resilience and transformation.

Cicada Spiritual Meaning In the Bible

Back in May 2007, something remarkable happened – at my boss’s funeral, I decided to give my life to Christ. That same year, the large numbers of cicadas made their buzzing presence known, emerging after years underground. It was a vivid reminder for me that spiritual rebirth and renewal are real and possible. Just like the cicadas’ emergence from a dark world into the light, I found myself grafted into a new life with Christ, experiencing a journey of transformation.

Cicada emerging from the shell

Cicada Symbolism and Spiritual Insights

Cicadas lay eggs in branches, symbolizing a connection between life cycles and renewal. While Romans 11:17-24 (ESV) unveils a spiritual truth about the relationship between roots and branches.

Drawing from the analogy of an olive tree, Paul vividly portrays God’s covenant relationship with His people. The branches broken off symbolize the Jewish people who are in unbelief and the gentiles grafted into the tree because of God’s goodness, securely held in place by their faith in Christ. This parallels the cicada’s process of laying eggs in branches, signifying new life and growth.

Roots and Branches -Cicada Spiritual meaning in the Bible

This biblical analogy emphasizes that it is not the branches that support the plant roots, but rather the root that supports the branches. Just as the tree roots sustain the life-lasting power of the cicadas cycle, our faith in Christ and God’s Word uphold us through challenges and transformations, enabling us to flourish and bear spiritual fruit in our journey of faith.

Skin of cicada

The Spiritual Scriptural Cicada Life Cycle

“We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.” Romans 6:4 (NIV):  

Just as the cicada goes through a period of being buried underground (during its nymph stage) before emerging as an adult, this verse speaks of being buried with Christ in baptism, symbolizing death to the old self and the emergence of a new life, akin to the cicada’s emergence.

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” Corinthians 5:17 (NIV)  

This verse beautifully parallels the cicada’s transformation from a nymph to an adult. In Christ, we become a new creation, shedding the old ways and embracing a new life, just as the cicadas sheds its empty shells (nymph exoskeleton) to become a fully formed adult.

“Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.” Colossians 3:9-10 (NIV)

Similar to how the cicada sheds its old skin, this verse speaks of putting off the old self with its practices and putting on a new self, which is continually renewed in knowledge. This renewal process reflects the cicada’s growth and renewal as it transitions through its life stages.

Flipping Fate: A Divine Parallel in Cicada Intervention

Man is like a breath; his days are like a passing shadow” (Psalm 144:4).

Cicadas have a relatively short life span, spending either 13 or 17 years underground depending on their brood. Upon emerging from the soil, they partake in a grand cicada celebration for about a month before their life cycle concludes.

During a ‘major cicada event,’ these small insects are poor flyers due to their heavy wings, leading many to land on their backs struggling to flip over. I took on the task of flipping them over, extending their brief time, much like how God breathes life into me.

Cicada Spiritual Meaning In The Bible Number 17

Let’s see if the number 17 and 13, the years cicadas are underground has some hidden meanings.

The Number 13: Unlucky or a Symbol of Spiritual Growth?

In biblical contexts, the number 13 is sometimes associated with rebellion and lawlessness due to Nimrod’s role in the tower of Babel, being the thirteenth in the line of Ham (Noah’s son). This association has led some to view it as an unlucky number. But is that all there is to it?

Spiritual Growth and Renewal: Contrary to its negative connotations, the number 13 holds significant symbolism in Hebrew culture. It represents the age at which individuals undergo circumcision, signifying a rite of passage and a cutting away of old skin. This act, paralleled with biblical themes of renewal, growth, and covenant with God, mirrors the cicada’s transformation from nymph to adult.

Just as the cicada emerges from darkness, shedding its old self, we human beings can experience spiritual awakening  and renewal by shedding what no longer serves us, embracing change, and stepping into a new phase of life.

a pile of cicada

The Triumph 17

Divine Triumphs Over Adversity: The number 17 resonates with victory and overcoming, as seen in the biblical narrative of the ark landing on Mount Ararat on Nissan 17 after the flood. Cicadas experience their own triumph by emerging after 17 years underground, overcoming the challenges of the soil and their prolonged confinement.

Enduring Faith and Love: The seventeenth mention of “love” in 1 Corinthians 13:13 underscores the enduring nature of love. Interestingly, male cicadas use their loud noise to communicate and attract females, showcasing a unique aspect of love and continuity in nature. While it’s not human love, it’s a fascinating display of an insect love story, highlighting the beauty of the natural world.

New Beginnings and Transformation: Nisan 17 also marks Jesus Christ’s resurrection, symbolizing victory over death and heralding a new phase of life and growth. In the same way, through Jesus, we leave our old sinful nature behind and become new creatures in Christ. The emergence of cicadas after 17 years of being half-alive underground, shedding their skin, and transforming into flying creatures seems to reflect our remarkable transformation into one of God’s creatures.

This exploration of the number 17 reveals deep spiritual truths about victory, transformation, enduring love, and the continuous cycle of life, drawing intriguing parallels with the cicada’s remarkable journey.

sign says recession warning in clouds wiht sun

Cicada’s Cause Bad Times?

The cicada populations every 17 years brings both awe and challenges. Their sheer numbers can create a sense of plague-like intensity, disrupting outdoor activities with their loud buzzing, and serving as a reminder of nature’s overwhelming force.

In the last 70 years, the seventeen year life cycle of cicada appearances have coincided with economic downturns, suggesting a correlation between natural cycles and economic trends.

In 2007, during the emergence of cicadas, the world faced the 2007-2008 global financial crisis, marking a period of economic turbulence. Similarly, in 1990, the USA experienced a recession lasting only 8 months. In 1973, the appearance of cicada coincided with the onset of a worldwide economic downturn triggered by soaring oil prices, inflation, and unemployment rates. The cicadas’ emergence in 1957 triggered an economic downturn that lasted until April 1958, highlighting the connection between natural cycles and economic fluctuations. It’s a potential situation we might plan for and pray against.

History shows that financial challenges are short-term, similar to cicadas’ cyclical emergence.

two cicadas on a leaf

13 &17-year Broods Solar Eclipses

In 2024, the simultaneous arrival of both 17-year and 13-year cicadas, a phenomenon that last occurred in 1803 during solar eclipse years. This rare event makes us consider how celestial phenomena, nature’s rhythms, and human experiences are interconnected.

Final Thoughts

What is the Spiritual Meaning of Cicadas in 2024?

Cicadas, despite their eerie appearance, teach us spiritual lessons of renewal, revival, and facing challenges with faith, transformation, and resilience. They signify breaking free from darkness and moving towards God’s light, even if the journey includes hardships. Like cicadas shedding their old selves, we are called to embrace spiritual growth, love for others, and cherish moments on Earth.

Eternal Renewal

One day, we will shed our earthly bodies. However, our faith teaches us that this shedding leads to an eternal renewal, where we exchange mortal clothes for incorruptible garments, living eternally with God and our loved ones. This eternal perspective reminds us of the transient nature of life’s challenges and the enduring hope found in spiritual renewal and transformation.

The main spiritual meaning of cicadas in the Bible invites us to reflect on the cyclical nature of life, the transformative power of faith, and the assurance of eternal renewal and love in our spiritual journey.

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