Day 10: Man’s Authority Over Nature

Genesis 1:26

God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the sky, and over the livestock, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

When people fail to learn or believe that God created the world, they fail to recognize Him as the one who knows how everything is supposed to work. When someone goes against the one who made them, that person lives in rebellion. It isn’t surprising that people choose to make themselves look good and pretend that God doesn’t exist while living in rebellion. In Genesis, God tells us about the authority structure that He has chosen for the earth. It is His will that mankind to be in charge of the animal world.

Evolution really creates a problem in this area. Since the animal world is where an evolutionist believes they originated, it can lead to a worship of animals. After all, in that worldview, animals participated in the creation of mankind. Evolutionists can go the opposite direction too and choose to fight against the animal kingdom. Since evolution teaches the “survival of the fittest,” then perhaps it makes sense to kill off anything that gets in your way.

Notice that the Bible provides a worldview that shows love for the animal kingdom and for mankind. It tells us that, although mankind is in charge, they are only in charge because God, who created and blessed the animal kingdom, put them in charge. We are not to worship animals and we are not to treat them with disrespect. We are not to allow them to harm humans or usurp their authority, but are to have dominion over them.

Pets: This reveals why we don’t believe it is wrong to put pets “to sleep.” We have dominion over the lives of the animal kingdom as given to us by God. If we believe that the most humane thing to do is to relieve an animal of misery, then we have the authority, to the best of our understanding, to do it. We don’t have this right with humans, however. God did not give us this kind of dominion over each other. He has reserved that authority for Himself and expects us to obey his word in how we relate to each other.

Cloning: This also reveals why cloning sheep is not necessarily a bad thing. Sheep are under our dominion. Nevertheless, we need to be careful that we obey God and treat the cloned animals with the same respect as the un-cloned ones. We should also maintain the “kind” limitations as designed by God. God holds mankind responsible for their actions while in authority over the animal kingdom and can remove humans who harm them if He wants to.

Theology: Notice that God speaks of Himself as “Us.” Even though God is one God, He chooses to be a relationship of three persons. I don’t feel the need to have to understand this fact. Most things in life I will never understand, but God made it clear to us that He is One and represents Himself as a relationship of three persons. This is called The Trinity. In the next section, we learn that God chose for mankind to be represented as a relationship of two sexes. From these things I understand that relationships are very important to God.