The Mary T. and
Frank L. Hoffman
Letters and Responses
Letter from Judy Watson with Questions about God and the Bible - 11 Nov 2004
Hi Mary and Frank,
I hope this letter finds you both well, I am sorry that I did not get back to you yesterday as I said I would, yesterday was a very hectic day and in the evening I had to put one of my cats to sleep, so I didn't feel much like writing, so I am here now. My questions are sometimes hard to understand what I am trying to say so I will explain it as best as I can. I know that some sound like I am questioning God, and I guess maybe in a way I am or trying to understand, so here goes.
First of all I don't like that he would ask for animals to be sacrificed, but I've had to accept that they are his creations and he can do what ever he wants.
(1) When we started off as in Genesis, we were vegetarians. Now, when God flooded the earth and everything died, then he gave man permission to eat meat. My question is WHY? did he do that? What I am trying to say is that God is supposed to know everything in the future, he must of known about factory farms and how those animals would suffer, thousands a day all over the world, and in slaughter houses, the people are immune to all this suffering and chopping up of live animals, so if God knew all this horror was going to happen, WHY? did he give these animals feelings???????????
Also when God flooded the earth and after he said that he would never use water again, it makes me think, did he make a mistake,? I only ask this because when I do something that didn't turn out the way I wanted it too, that is what I say, is that I won't do it that way again.
These are questions that bog my mind.
Please don't get me wrong, I am not trying to belittle God, I am just trying to understand. I was hoping that he would Love his animals as much as I do. They didn't do anything to live and die the deaths they are, they didn't sin.
So I am hoping that you might be able to enlighten me on this.
God Bless them all, Great and Small
Reply from Frank and Mary
Thank you for your questions. You're not alone in questioning these things.
Let's begin with animals sacrifices: At the time when God gave these laws to the Israelites the whole earth was very corrupt and full of people who made both human and animal sacrifices. God seems to be limiting the Israelites to specific animal sacrifices, in the hopes that they would mature to the point of not killing any living being. Sacrificing is a form of scapegoating. You might like to read Steve Kaufman's series on this subject http://www.all-creatures.org/living/cphv.html
In Genesis 1:29-30, God states his creation intent of having no death and all humans and animals eating only plant foods. The world became corrupt and people begin sacrificing and eating animals. Even after the flood, the first thing Noah did was sacrifice animals (Genesis 8:21). It was only after this that God granted a concession for the people to eat animals, but with considerable limitations. You might be interested in reading: http://www.all-creatures.org/sermons98/s17mar2002.html
We need to keep in mind, when considering God's motives and whether or not "He made a mistake", that we were given a free will to do as God desired, or to do otherwise. God expected Noah and his family to once again live as He desired, and that there would no longer be any corruption upon the earth, but Noah and his family chose to do otherwise. That's why God said that they were evil from their youth.
God loves the whole of His creation: humans, animals, and the environment. He created the whole earth to be a peaceable kingdom where there was no death. We might compare this to a mother who loving knitted the most beautiful sweaters for her children, but instead of cherishing them, they used them as door mats upon which to wipe their dirty feet. As you can imagine the mother's feeling would be extremely hurt, as we believe God's are. God wants us to look to Isaiah's prophecy (11:6-9) and to the fact that there is no death in heaven (Revelation 21:4). He wants us to be peacemaking children of God (Matthew 5:9) and to free the whole of creation from its corruption (Romans 8:18-25). And, He want us to do everything in our power to bring our Fathers heavenly will to earth as it is in heaven (Matthew 6:10), just as we pray.
We hope this helps.
In the Love of the Lord,
Frank and Mary
We welcome your comments
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