shedding new light on stories of old

Fish Tales (From the Belly of the Whale) - Preview 7

What does The Bible have to say about what manner of creature is allowed into Heaven: human or animal?

Misconception #43

Only Humans Get Into Heaven; Sorry, No Pets Allowed

In Genesis, when Eve encountered a talking serpent, she never once acted startled. Without batting an eye, she just carried on a conversation with the creature as if nothing unusual at all was happening.

Now the serpent was the cleverest animal that God had created, and he said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You shouldn’t eat from any of the trees in the garden’?”

And the woman replied, “We can eat from any tree in the garden. God only told us to not eat from the tree at its center. That’s the one He told us to avoid, because if we so much as touch it, we’ll die.”

“Ah, you won’t die,” cooed the serpent. “It’s just that God knows if you eat from that tree your eyes will opened, and you’ll be just like God, knowing good and evil.1

Similarly, in The Book of Numbers, we find that:

When Balaam struck his donkey, the smitten creature looked back at Balaam and asked, “What have I ever done to make you beat me this way?”

And Balaam replied, “Because you’ve mocked me! If I had a sword in my hand, I’d kill you, here and now!”

Dumbfounded, the donkey blurted, “Who me? But aren’t I your donkey? The same one you’ve ridden ever since you got me? Have I ever done anything like that to you before?”

And Balaam said, “Never!”2

How bizarre is that? And when I say bizarre, I’m sure most of you think I’m asking: How bizarre is that for someone to have a conversation with a donkey or a serpent? But no; that’s not what I’m saying at all. What I’m asking is: How bizarre is that for someone to so casually respond to a talking animal? No doubt talking to an animal is bizarre, I grant you. But considering that The Bible is a book full of miracles, the idea of a talking animal is certainly no harder to believe in than the parting of the Red Sea, or Jesus walking on water, or any other number of miraculous events. No, what I find so bizarre is the casual way that Eve and Balaam respond to these talking animals, as if they were carrying on a conversation with another human being.

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To hear Correcting Biblical Misconceptions: Part 1, from June 23rd, 2021, where I speak with Zen Garcia, on his show Momentary Zen, CLICK BELOW.
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Still, I can imagine many people reading this who are saying, “Ridiculous. No wonder we don’t look to The Old Testament anymore for truly inspired wisdom. You can’t really expect us to take stock in old wives tales like that anymore, can you?”

To which I’d reply, “Well, okay. Ever heard of The Book of Revelation? You believe in it—it’s in The New Testament, right?”

“Of course,” you’d say. “I believe it. Why do you ask?”

Well, let’s see. Turn please to the opening chapters of Revelation, where the Apostle John is taken up to Heaven, to the very throne of God. Notice how there are what are described as Four Beasts, sometimes called Four Living Creatures in the presence of the Lord Almighty; and these so-called “creatures” are said to resemble a lion, a bull, a man, and an eagle, respectively.3

And I saw that very near the throne of God, there were Four Beasts, and in the midst of the twenty-four Elders there stood a Lamb, as though it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God that have been sent forth throughout the entire world.4

Almost every Bible-believing Christian is familiar with these Four Living Creatures, but how many have ever stopped to consider how much talking they did in God’s presence?

So ends this Preview of Fish Tales (From the Belly of the Whale). To read more, please click on one of the following links:

Read an Excerpt to find that the Scriptures are clear that God created the animal and human kingdoms out of the very same material.

Read the Previous Preview to find out the real reason why venomous snakes attacked the Children of Israel in the Wilderness.

Read the Previous Excerpt to see that in hindsight it’s obvious that the Lord was testing the faith of this fickle bunch of exiles.

Read the First Preview to see if you can tell the difference between a genuine message from The Bible and a counterfeit version.

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To watch a video presentation of this chapter of Fish Tales, CLICK HERE.
Selected Bibliography

1. Genesis 3:1-5

2. Numbers 22:28-30

3. Revelation 4:7

4. Ibid. 5:6