28th October 2016

Where is the Behemoth Now?  

Look now at the behemoth, which I made along with you; He eats grass like an ox.”
Job 40:15 (NKJV)

This week it has been reported that it is becoming more and more likely that some of our favourite animals will become extinct. This is despite some recent success stories like that of China’s giant panda. It is suggested that the world’s general wildlife population has fallen by 60% since the 1970s. The methodology used in the report has been criticized, but it still raises serious concerns.

The book of Job refers to the Behemoth. When you read how it is described, it sounds like a giant hippopotamus: it “eats grass”, has powerful muscles in its belly, its strong tail sways back and forth, and it lies hidden among the reeds in the river (verses 16-18). Whatever this animal was, it is no longer around. Was it a mythical beast? Or, did it become one of humanity’s victims and is now extinct? Will it be a similar story with some of the mammals, fish, birds, reptiles and insects we see around us today? For example, in years to come, our great, great grandchildren might look back at the descriptions of some of the elephant species in awe, and they might wonder how we let them become extinct.

In the scripture above God reminds Job that he made the Behemoth along with humankind. The thought is that God celebrates the diversity of his creation…from the mountain goats to the ostrich to the locust to the soaring eagles that build their nests on high (read Job 39 and see how God describes some of his creation).

When we see what we humans have done to the earth and to the wonderful wildlife it contains, we can understand more what Paul meant when he wrote that the creation waits in eager expectation for the return of Jesus Christ and for the freedom from oppression that will bring (See Romans 8:18-25). 

Father, help us to value the wonderful diversity of your creation, and we pray for the return of your Son, Jesus Christ. In Jesus’ name.

Study by James Henderson


Bible openAbout the Author:
James Henderson is the National Ministry Leader for Grace Communion International in the UK and Ireland.

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