Who Cares if Some Marine Mollusks are Threatened?
Certainly you care if the giant Panda is facing extinction. I care if certain waterfowl or doves are endangered but who cares if certain marine mollusks are threatened? You may not have expected this answer but most people refer to this caring one simply as God. As you enter my driveway you can’t resist reading the signage which reads, “If God is not vitally concerned about the destruction of every species on the planet today, He will have to apologize to Noah.”
The following story was related to me by a Christian lady I enjoy greatly. Her recent tale involved three people, the Holy Spirit and two oceanic snails that she encountered on the sea’s edge. She was talking to a gentleman who was waiting for his wife in a coastal city when she and the gentleman spotted a large ocean snail or gastropod mollusk. Behind it followed a much smaller one. When she was admiring their system of communication, with the one following the other and the size of the larger one, she heard the Holy Spirit speak to her, “Move that snail out of harm’s way.” She didn’t do it. How many times have all of us that know God heard the Holy Spirit directing them to skip showing up at the office today, give that limping lady that hundred dollar bill or find that puppy a home and simply ignored it. If my senses are correct, we all have, not intentionally but because we simply didn’t think God would be concerned about such matters.
The story continues as my sister in the Lord was entertained with the snails and the fact that the gentleman who had joined her observation was amused with the antics of the two mollusks. Suddenly the man’s wife who had been shopping nearby returned with a pair of new high heels on her feet and before they could say anything, she accidentally stepped on the larger snail. Its shell crushed and its body basically exploded from the impact. While this was the end of the story it also was not the end, for this dear Christian friend had to deal with the memory of another creature that perished when somebody called God wanted to protect it.
You can write me off as a nut case; someone who thinks escargot is a sports coupe made by some exotic company, but I am simply a Christian who knows the bible. If God might not care about the animals, why does it say in Genesis 9:9-10, “And behold, I establish my covenant with you and with your seed after you: and with every living creature that is with you of the fowl, of the cattle and of every beast of the earth with you; from all that go out of the ark, to every beast of the earth.”
I met a man recently whose brother raised 40 hogs and was very sad when he felt it was time to call the butcher to slaughter them. I think that such tender feelings even though in this case did not save the hogs are a natural and spiritual response from those who have retained or acquired a tender heart. In fact God says that we are to do all our things with love. (1Corinthians 16:14) Several theologians who are dear friends tell me that in the Hebrew and the Greek, all in this scripture means all. It means when you correct your teenage son, you do it with love. And when you try to train a problem animal to stay in the pasture, you also do that with love. No one said the Christian life would be easy. In fact, Jesus said, “If you suffer with me you shall also be manifested with me.” (Romans 8:17)
One of my favorite stories in the bible is also one of the favorite stories of many carnivorous human beings who believe animals were made to dice and serve like peppers or carrots. They tell it this way. God owns the cattle on a thousand hills. I have studied to be approved and tell you it means something quite different. It is found in Psalm 50:10 and in the King James Version says, “For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills.” From this they derive that this means it’s very enjoyable to feast on a two inch thick porter house steak. I lie not, it is not enjoyable to those creatures that have to share both their life and their body parts to please someone who has no control over their appetite and has no respect for the soon coming millennium. My translation that I get from the Hebrew and Chaldeon original text is not even similar to the KJV. As a son of England, I assure you that the King James translation has many places where it surmises that one thing is the case and completely rejects the true meaning of the scripture. The King James Version is my delight, but it reflects the societal prejudices of that day when it was written. It became a blessing to those who had no access to the original scripture whether that angers you or not. Some people won’t even believe that Christ the Messiah did not read from His King James Bible.
Psalm 50:11 goes on to say, “I know all the fowls of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are mine.” Phonetically speaking, the Hebrew word for “know” is “yawdah” and means to be acquainted with, to acknowledge, to advise, to answer, to be aware of, to make, to bring into existence, to learn from, to mark, to perceive, to make skillful, to show, to teach, to communicate with, to understand and most importantly regarding this article, observe and care for. So this is my point. God cares for all of His creation.
Recently one of my friends who does not value environmentalism, neither animal rights, tried to explain away according to his mannerisms, miracles and the supposed error of believing bible prophecy and for the first time in more than a dozen years said, “I’ll give you one thing, if this state continues to cut down its forests, we will be in sad shape.” We will also be in sad shape if we do not listen to what the Holy Spirit speaks. I say this not to condemn anyone but to bring to your attention the fact that Jesus said in John 16:13, “Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself: but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak and he will show you things to come.” The Holy Spirit is referred to in the bible as the Spirit of Truth and Acts 2:2 also indicates He comes from Heaven, so that’s where He hears the Word of God.
If you are someone who embraces the truth: embrace this, “God cares about all creatures.” If you are not interested in hearing the truth, don’t waste your time reading the Word of God. And if you are interested in what shall be and what the Word of God says about His caring for animals, you better believe what He has spoken. God cares. As a child of God you should be learning how to do the same, for Paul says in Ephesians 5:1-2a, “Be ye therefore followers of God as dear children; and walk in love, as Christ also has loved us…”
I once knew a preacher who trained his pet pig to roll over and play dead. He boasted, as if it were funny that one day he told his pig to roll over and play dead, and then he shot it with a rifle. It is common among the hill people to shoot one of their pet dogs or cats if they have too many and here in hunting season, to shoot a mother bear along with her several little cubs. No one who does such things can realistically be a follower of God or care about animals the way God does. “A righteous man regards the life of his beast: but the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel.” (Proverbs 12:10) If we are led by the Spirit we will know what is the mind of the Spirit, and we can demonstrate our love for both the gospel and God’s creatures by being passionate about our compassion. There never is a new world coming where humans are allowed to mistreat animals the way they do today. Such a gospel which allows for such atrocities and neglect has no roots in the bible. Go tell it on a mountain, the Spirit of Truth will be leading your way!