Saturday, August 12, 2017

Do You Love God The Way Your Dog Loves You? Proverb 12:10

Back in 2013, two days after Christmas, I had to have our beloved 18 year old dog, Hershee, euthanize. Her kidneys had shut down and she was in so much pain she could not even settle down for more than five minutes at a time. So the merciful thing to do was to end her life.

It's easy to talk about it now, but at the time it was as if a member of our family had died. Maybe this should not be, I mean after all, she was just a dog. But, whether we choose to accept it or not, Hershee felt that she was one of us, and we treated her as if we would treat any member of our family. We were her "pack" so to speak, and I trust that she felt herself a valuable member of that pack. She ate good when we ate good, was happy when we were happy and always tried to do her part, even if it was just to bark and growl at people she didn't know.

In return, we showered her with affection and praise. Treating her with snacks, leftovers, long walks, and we even took her on special trips to the park or lake just for her to enjoy the outdoors. Our time with her will live for ever in our memories, just as they would if she were a human child.

What did we get out of this? The same thing she got from us but more-so. Medical science tells us that pet owners have lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol levels, a higher survival rate after serious illness, fewer doctor visits, reduced loneliness, less depression, and stress. Studies have also shown that children who grow up with animals on farms, or just as pets, are generally more healthy physically and physiologically, along with being better prepared for adulthood.

We now know that soldiers that come home from war, have an easier time readjusting to civilian life if they have an pet, just as the elderly do better if they have a pet they can care for and talk to. Nursing homes and hospitals where people have few if any visitors would be wise to recognize the benefits animals have on a persons health and healing potential.

God knew this when He created us. I believe that is why both man and land dwelling animals were created on the 6th day of the week. Where as He created all air and water animals on the 5th day of the week. Oh I am sure some will challenge me on this, because we all know someone who is very attached to a bird or other creation of God, maybe you are one of them. I speak in a general sense of course, not in a dogmatic way. After all, there is always an exception to any rule or theory.

However, if you look at the animal world, only the land animals seem to have a nature about them that accepts man as part of their pack. When I read about the beasts or animals in Scripture, I believe it is speaking of animals of the field, cows, sheep, goats etc. Any land animal that is useful to man, and it is these types of animals that God created for man's use in survival.

Well we learn throughout the Scriptures about the relationship that men have with their animals, and thus we come to Proverb 12:10. In the first part of this Proverb, Solomon tells us;
A righteous man regards the life of his animal, Proverb 12:10 (a)
One of the characteristics of a Godly person is mercy. A man of God shows no cruelty to anything. A man's benevolence extends to even the fiercest most dangerous animals on the planet. A man of God has a heart of love for everything, not just his fellow man. A man of God always considers what is best for the comfort, health, and life in general of both men and animals that serve him.

God Himself gives the example of how we should treat the animal that work hard for us when He told us not to muzzle the ox that treads out the grain. (Deuteronomy 25:4) After all, How would you like to slave away at something and reap no benefit from it? Thus the Oxen should also share in the fruit of its labors just as people should. In His Ten Commandments, God also decreed that animals should also be given a day off from work as He did for man.
Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the LORD your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. Exodus 20:8-10
While Scripture expresses a clear priority for human life over animal life, animals are part of God’s creation and thus we are to show proper care and humane treatment towards them. When He was going to heal a man's withered hand in a synagogue on the Sabbath, the Pharisees thought to catch him breaking the law of working on the Sabbath. So Jesus asked them a question;
“What man is there among you who has one sheep, and if it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will not lay hold of it and lift it out? Of how much more value then is a man than a sheep? Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.” Matthew 12:11-12
I truly believe that God placed animals in our lives so that we can learn the principle of loving your servants just as God loves us. When it comes to dogs, I believe God put inside them the love for us, that He wants us to have for Him. Ever see a Dog in a car or truck patiently waiting for the leader of their pack to return? My wife told me that when she waited in the van for me to make a quick trip into the store, that the dogs sat looking at the door I went into. If anyone got in their way, they would move to see that door again. They love me so much, they couldn't help but stare at that door until I came out.

This is the same way the men and women stood watching the clouds where Jesus went up. Those men and women loved Jesus with all their hearts and souls, and they wanted to wait till their Master, reappeared. This is how a dog will treat their master, This is a lesson God gives us through our pets. Do you love God, the way they love you? Are you waiting with baited breath for our Lord to return, or have you already forgotten about Him?
Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. 10 And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel, 11 who also said, "Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven." Acts 1:9-11
Mankind is to animals what God is to mankind? Yes, there is almost no limit to the number of places in Scripture that show that man and animal are inseparable, our futures are intertwined. Here are a few Scriptures which show a virtually identical treatment of both man and animal:
So the LORD said, "I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth, both man and beast, creeping thing and birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have made them.” Genesis 6:7
Surely for your lifeblood I will demand a reckoning; from the hand of every beast I will require it, and from the hand of man. From the hand of every man's brother I will require the life of man. Genesis 9:5
This month shall be your beginning of months; it shall be the first month of the year to you. Exodus 12:12
"Consecrate to Me all the firstborn, whatever opens the womb among the children of Israel, both of man and beast; it is Mine." Exodus 13:2
And it came to pass, when Pharaoh was stubborn about letting us go, that the LORD killed all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both the firstborn of man and the firstborn of beast. Therefore I sacrifice to the LORD all males that open the womb, but all the firstborn of my sons I redeem.' Exodus 13:15
"I have made the earth, the man and the beast that are on the ground, by My great power and by My outstretched arm, and have given it to whom it seemed proper to Me. And now I have given all these lands into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, My servant; and the beasts of the field I have also given him to serve him. Jeremiah 27:5-6
For what happens to the sons of men also happens to animals; one thing befalls them: as one dies, so dies the other. Surely, they all have one breath; man has no advantage over animals, for all is vanity Ecclesiastes 3:19
Your righteousness is like the great mountains;
Your judgments are a great deep; O LORD, You preserve man and beast.
Psalm 36:6
We are then told by Solomon in the second part of this Proverb;
But the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel. Proverb 12:10(b)
The Hebrew word used for cruel here is, אכזרי 'akzârı̂y. Which actually translates violent, without mercy, ruthless. Thus a person who treats an animal, or another human in such a way, is like the one who influences them, Satan. They can show no other disposition than what is in their master. When an evil person ever appears to be merciful, it is but a facade which they use to cover their true purposes of cruelty. To get what they desire, evil will wear any mask that helps them attain their goal. Anything they do is justified in their hearts as a way to get what they want. They will speak mercifully, extol benevolence, sometimes even give to the poor. During the Great Depression, the Chicago gangster, Al Capone, would set up soup kitchens to get the people on his side against the law. After all, if he were ever charged with a crime and brought to trial, on trial, it was these individuals who would sit on the jury.

Michael Vick would give the best food to his dogs, he would caress and pet them. He was even known to parade his dogs around and brag about them. Until they lost a fight, then he would complain about the bullet he had to waist to kill them. Similar men would treat roosters the same way for cock fights, and Bulls for bull fights, and yes men have treated men this way throughout the years. Look how pimps treat their women like queens, until they step out of line, or are too old and used up. Just as gladiators were treated in days of old when they were treated like royalty, as long as they won.

To better understand this type of person, you need to know that they possess no compassion, because the godless is compassionless. Which is the direct opposite of compassion. Unless they allow Christ in their heart, they will live a life that altogether show no compassion. Something that was said about serial killers like Ted Bundy, John Wayne Gacy , The BTK killer and others. Those with no conscience and no remorse for the cruelty they inflict on others or on animals. Interestingly, many serial killers start off by torturing and killing small animals as teens. They just progress to larger animals, and in their minds humans are no different than animals. They have no love for man and no belief in God.

Even the tender touches are acts of cruelty, because those caresses, hugs, and kisses are but a prelude to the evil that is about to be unleashed. Just like the fame and fortune that Lucifer offered Christ, it would have came only with the result of eternal destruction. That is all evil can do, offer something that is fleeting, and in the scope of eternity, this world is fleeting.

This is the type of mercy and love that too many animals in the world suffer under. God cares greatly for the animals He has created. Those who seek to follow His ways will also care about His creation, including animal life. Animal cruelty, the neglect of pets, and the wanton destruction of a species are sin. Christians are called to care for animals, expressing the same attitude toward animal life as our Creator has. This kind of evil love is what Solomon speaks of here, and what God truly abhors. Proverb 12 (NKJV)

The House of the Righteous Shall Stand

01 Whoever loves instruction loves knowledge,
00 But he who hates correction is stupid.

02 A good man obtains favor from the LORD,
00 But a man of wicked intentions He will condemn.

03 A man is not established by wickedness,
00 But the root of the righteous cannot be moved.

04 An excellent wife is the crown of her husband,
00 But she who causes shame is like rottenness in his bones.

05 The thoughts of the righteous are right,
00 But the counsels of the wicked are deceitful.
06 The words of the wicked are, "Lie in wait for blood,"
00 But the mouth of the upright will deliver them.

07 The wicked are overthrown and are no more,
00 But the house of the righteous will stand.

08 A man will be commended according to his wisdom,
00 But he who is of a perverse heart will be despised.

09 Better is the one who is slighted but has a servant,
00 Than he who honors himself but lacks bread.

10 A righteous man regards the life of his animal,
00 But the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel.

11 He who tills his land will be satisfied with bread,
00 But he who follows frivolity is devoid of understanding.

12 The wicked covet the catch of evil men,
00 But the root of the righteous yields fruit.
13 The wicked is ensnared by the transgression of his lips,
00 But the righteous will come through trouble.
14 A man will be satisfied with good by the fruit of his mouth,
00 And the recompense of a man's hands will be rendered to him.

15 The way of a fool is right in his own eyes,
00 But he who heeds counsel is wise.
16 A fool's wrath is known at once,
00 But a prudent man covers shame.

17 He who speaks truth declares righteousness,
00 But a false witness, deceit.
18 There is one who speaks like the piercings of a sword,
00 But the tongue of the wise promotes health.
19 The truthful lip shall be established forever,
00 But a lying tongue is but for a moment.
20 Deceit is in the heart of those who devise evil,
00 But counselors of peace have joy.
21 No grave trouble will overtake the righteous,
00 But the wicked shall be filled with evil.
22 Lying lips are an abomination to the LORD,
00 But those who deal truthfully are His delight.

23 A prudent man conceals knowledge,
00 But the heart of fools proclaims foolishness.

24 The hand of the diligent will rule,
00 But the lazy man will be put to forced labor.

25 Anxiety in the heart of man causes depression,
00 But a good word makes it glad.

26 The righteous should choose his friends carefully,
00 For the way of the wicked leads them astray.

27 The lazy man does not roast what he took in hunting,
00 But diligence is man's precious possession.

28 In the way of righteousness is life,
00 And in its pathway there is no death.

No comments:

Post a Comment