Summary: The man of God (Job) tells us to ask the beasts and see what we could learn from them. Even animals can teach us spiritual character.
Title: LESSONS FROM THE ANIMALS
Text: Job 12:7; 35:11
Intro: It is written that though man and beast were both created on the 6th day, men did not originate from animals (Gen. 1:24-31). Man and beast were separately created. In the Bible we see that men are compared to animals. The Bible teaches that animals have qualities that we should either emulate or avoid. The man of God (Job) tells us to ask the beasts and see what we could learn from them. Even animals can teach us spiritual character. There is –
1. The LION (Prov. 28:1). The lion symbolizes:
a) A righteous believer serving Christ and winning souls is like a bold fearless lion. A backslidden one is the opposite.
b) Christ returning to conquer the world is called the “Lion of the tribe of Judah” (Rev. 5:5).
c) Satan seeking to tempt us to sin and destruction is like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour (I Pet. 5:8).
2. The FOX (Luke 13:31-32). As a fox is cruel, subtle, pesky, and murderous creature so Jesus compared Herod to a fox since he showed these qualities. Let us not be deceitful in our dealings with men.
3. The ANT (Prov. 6:6-8). Ants having no overseer work diligently, cooperatively and willingly to provide food for the future. Question: Do we work hard and efficiently to lay up treasures in heaven? Do we work with other believers in our church ministries to win people to Christ and help train them to serve God faithfully?
4. The SPIDER (Prov. 30:28). A spider (in the KJV) can make its home in king’s palace but does not deserve to be there. You can live in Heaven with the King of Kings if your faith is in Christ. And you don’t deserve to be there! (John 14:1-6)
5. The SERPENT (Gen. 3:1; Rev. 12:9) represents the Devil, and life-destroying alcohol (Prov. 23:31-32).
6. The BIRD (Matt.13:4,19; Rev 18:2) represent devils which snatch away God’s word that is sown in a person’s heart.
7. The EAGLE (Jer 48:40). The eagle represents the believer who “sets his affection on things above, on heaven, on eternal things” (Col. 3:2). It pictures those that wait upon God in His will and timing (Isa. 40:31).
8. The HART (Psa. 42:1). Or a deer represents believers who seek a closer relationship with God. Do you?
9. The WOLF (Acts 20:29-30). Wolves are fierce killers that prey on the weak, vulnerable lambs. Wolves picture false teachers who spread their false doctrines which deceive, hurt and confuse even Christians.
10. The PIG or SWINE (Mark 5:11-13). A pig represents a person who does not value spiritual things, and is willing to attack believers. As pigs seek to wallow in mud so do sinners seek and enjoy sin. Question: Are you as lamb who hates sin or a pig who wallows in sin?
11. The DOG (Phil. 3:2; II Pet. 2:22). To the Jews a dog is an unclean animal. Like the swine. Dogs represent unsaved false teachers who knew the truth but turned away from it.
12. The GOAT (Matt. 25:31-33). Christ at His Second Coming separates the sheep from goats. Sheep are saved people who help persecuted Jews in the Tribulation. Goats are unsaved people who did not help these persecuted Jews. Question: Are you like a sheep or a goat? Are you saved or lost? Do you help or hinder God’s people?
13. The SHEEP or LAMB represents:
a) Believers who follow Christ are like sheep (Jn. 10:27).
b) Sinners are like sheep who’ve gone astray (Isa. 53:6).
c) Christ is called the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world (Jn. 1:29) because of His sacrifice on the cross (I Pet. 1:18-19). He is sinless as a spotless lamb.
14. The WORM (Job 25:6; Psa. 22:6) represents the unpleasantness and foulness of sinful man in God’s sight.
Conclusion: Friends, when you see these animals, recall the lessons they teach. Dear listener, if you had to be honest now, which animal(s) best describe your character?