Summary: The chameleon is an unclean creature. Christians should avoid its characteristic of changing opinions to suite our environment.


When the new nation of Israel was getting ready to go into the land that God had promised them, their leader, Moses, gave them instructions on how they should live as God’s people. God wanted them to prosper, but for this to happen, they had to avoid certain animals that could harm them. One of these was the chameleon (Lev 11:30), as it was regarded as unclean.

It’s a lizard-like creature that has a skin capable of changing colour to blend in with its surroundings. If it’s on the ground or rocks it turns a brownish colour, but when it moves over leaves or plants its skins takes a yellow tint. The colour change is through a chemical reaction. It’s often a very effective camouflage.

This is very good for a chameleon, but humans, especially Christians, shouldn’t follow its example. We must know what we believe and have standards that we keep whatever other people around us do or think. We mustn’t be different on Monday to what we are on Sunday. When a challenge comes to speak the truth or resist a temptation, it’s so easy to fade into the scenery and be like the crowd - to do what the chameleon does and change the colour of our opinion.

Moses’ successor, Joshua, told the Israelite, "Choose you this day whom you will serve" (Josh 24:15). What he was saying is this, "Don’t go with the flow. Be prepared by God’s strength to stand out for the right, even if everyone else goes along with what you know is not God’s standard." This creature, the chameleon, which God told the people to avoid, is an object lesson to us. Don’t be like the chameleon and change from you know is right because others are doing it.


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