Do you know the time when the wild mountain goats bear young? Or can you mark when the deer gives birth? Can you number the months that they fulfill? Or do you know the time when they bear young? They bow down, they bring forth their young, they deliver their offspring. Their young ones are healthy, they grow strong with grain; they depart and do not return to them.
Who set the wild donkey free? Who loosed the bonds of the onager [swift donkey], whose home I have made the wilderness, and the barren land his dwelling? He scorns the tumult of the city; he does not heed the shouts of the driver. The range of the mountains is his pasture, and he searches after every green thing.
Will the wild ox be willing to serve you? Will he bed by your manger? Can you bind the wild ox in the furrow with ropes? Or will he plow the valleys behind you? Will you trust him because his strength is great? Or will you leave your labor to him? Will you trust him to bring home your grain, and gather it to your threshing floor?
The wings of the ostrich wave proudly, but are her wings and pinions like the kindly stork’s? For she leaves her eggs on the ground, and warms them in the dust; she forgets that a foot may crush them, or that a wild beast may break them. She treats her young harshly, as though they were not hers; her labor is in vain, without concern, Because God deprived her of wisdom, and did not endow her with understanding. When she lifts herself on high, she scorns the horse and its rider.
Have you given the horse strength? Have you clothed his neck with thunder? Can you frighten him like a locust? His majestic snorting strikes terror. He paws in the valley, and rejoices in his strength; he gallops into the clash of arms. He mocks at fear, and is not frightened; nor does he turn back from the sword. The quiver rattles against him, the glittering spear and javelin. He devours the distance with fierceness and rage; nor does he come to a halt because the trumpet has sounded. At the blast of the trumpet he says, “Aha!” He smells the battle from afar, the thunder of captains and shouting.
Does the hawk fly by your wisdom, and spread its wings toward the south? Does the eagle mount up at your command, and make its nest on high? On the rock it dwells and resides, on the crag of the rock and the stronghold. From there it spies out the prey; its eyes observe from afar. Its young ones suck up blood; and where the slain are, there it is. (Job 39)
The Animals Testify Of God
The animal kingdom is one of the greatest testimonies of the creative power of God. Job has tried to understand the nature of the Lord challenging the reasons for his awful condition. There is justification for his questions merited by the agony he feels physically, spiritually and emotionally. Elihu has finished his rebuke of the friends of Job and the patriarch himself. The Lord God now takes up the mantle of wisdom declaring to this most humble man that it is not in man to understand the infinite wisdom of the Creator. He challenges Job to consider the animals of His kingdom.
The mountain goat, wild donkey and ox, ostrich, horse and majestic hawk are not dependent upon man for their existence. There are thousands of species of creatures roaming the earth created by the word of God on the fifth and sixth days of creation. They were created before man. It is important for Job to remember that man did not create the beasts of the field. How the wild goat survives is not because of man’s wisdom. The wild donkey lives in its own world searching for every green thing to eat. One of most curious animals is the ostrich who seems to be a dumb creature leaving her eggs to be crushed by the others. She treats her young harshly. Man has tamed the horse but what a magnificent creature he is with his beauty and might. Flying high above the earth the hawk cares for its young. This happens every day and has continued from the beginning of time.
Job wants to understand the nature of God. The Lord reminds him he has yet to understand the mysteries of the animal kingdom. With all the scientific knowledge of man today there are still deep mysteries to why animals do what they do. Often when men come in contact with animals there is tragedy because they forget these animals live in a wild world governed by their own laws. Man can domesticate different animals but the majority of creatures are not tamed by man. This should remind man that God’s infinite wisdom is greater than man’s knowledge; and the animals prove the contrasts.
As you go about your day today take note of the animals. Remember they are fed by the hand of the Creator. They give birth and survive without the wisdom of men. Why? Because we are not as smart as we like to think we are. God takes care of the animals. The good news is that Jesus tells us we are of greater value than the animals. He died for man to save man. Thank God for His beautiful creation. They testify!
To assert that a world as intricate as ours emerged from chaos by chance is about as sensible as to claim that Shakespeare’s dramas were composed by rioting monkeys in a print shop. (Merrill C. Tenney, Science and Religion, ed. J. C. Monsma, 1962)