Sunday, August 8, 2010
all dogs go to heaven
The Word for today:
Psalm 97, 98
mark this: Psalm 98:7-9
Let the sea and everything in it shout his praise! Let the earth and all living things join in. Let the rivers clap their hands in glee! Let the hills sing out their songs of joy before the LORD.
I've had to bury a couple of my dogs. Both times, I fashioned a little cross and wrote their names and their years. And then I wrote "Romans 8:21"--because the cross of Jesus Christ will cover more ground than we might think.
We think of Jesus dying to redeem sinners. But don't stop there, because Jesus also redeemed creation from the effects of our sins.
We call the degradation of nature ecological pollution. The Bible calls it a curse, a direct result of mankind's sin:
And to Adam he said, "Because you have listened to the voice of your wife and have eaten of the tree of which I commanded you, 'You shall not eat of it,' cursed is the ground because of you." (Genesis 3:17)
Something that God described at the point of creation as very good (Genesis 1:31) has been badly disfigured at the hand of man:
The earth mourns and withers; the world languishes and withers; the highest people of the earth languish. The earth lies defiled under its inhabitants; for they have transgressed the laws, violated the statutes, broken the everlasting covenant. (Isaiah 24:4-5)
But in Psalm 98, seas, rivers, and mountains express their joy! That's because God's salvation doesn't just affect human beings:
For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross. (Colossians 1:19-20)
Romans 8:21 promises that when rebellion against God finally ends,
the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God.
That's when we're going to hear clapping and singing from some surprising sources:
Let the sea and everything in it shout his praise! Let the earth and all living things join in. Let the rivers clap their hands in glee! Let the hills sing out their songs of joy before the LORD. (Psalms 98:7-9)
And that's when old Shep will come bounding into view. His eyes won't be dim and his gait unsteady anymore. Because all dogs go to heaven. Two little crosses in our back field say so.