Saturday, November 28, 2009
Moses, the writer of the Genesis creation account, used the word nephesh (Hebrew: soul, self, life, creature, mind, living being, desire, emotion, passion) to describe the creation of the most advanced animal life next to man. These creatures are sometimes described as the "soulish" animals; those that display a mind, will, and emotion. They differ from humanity in the ways that are most important -- they are not able to understand, relate to, or seek to communicate with the Creator Himself. But they seem to be perfectly suited to be in relationships with human beings.
They are sad when we are sad. They rejoice in our happiness. In fact, many of us have no doubt that they seem most content, and are indeed most determined, to seek to provide that happiness for us. They are designed to please and bring joy and comfort to us in ways that are completely inexplicable apart from what seems to be a deliberate creative act of God for that purpose.
How else do you explain an animal who runs to the window before you pull in the driveway; who cowers when you are angry; who fetches a ball until his tongue hangs down on his chest, covered with leaves and dirt; who licks your arm where it itches even if you cannot see or feel any physical reason for the itch.
How else can pure evolutionary biology explain why a dog wags his tail?
Today our family lost a friend that cannot be replaced. Hank was the most kind, loving, friendly family pet we could ever imagine. He was a joy to share our home with and we will miss him greatly. When we remember Hank, it will always be with a smile and the tune of the "Happy Birthday" song in our hearts.
If God had a picture in His mind when he made nephesh, it must have looked just like Hank.