On the sixth day 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 fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.
In general, God gives men mastery over the animal kingdom. Many animals have been used to work for men, while others have been bred for food, clothes or ornaments. Others have been tamed and trained for entertainment or as pets. The animal is at the mercy of man's hand and a caring owner who uses his animal for work will look after his animal well. We must look after the animals which God has entrusted to our care. Although God has always seen us, human creatures more important than animals, He cares for both.
Research has indicated Australians have the highest ownership of pets, per household, in the world. Pet ownership is a fact of Australian life and more than 66% of households have one or more pets. Having a pet is not against God's law but if your pet takes up more time and money than your own child, then something is drastically wrong. Should we take in a stray dog, for instance, yet do nothing to help the homeless or hungry people in our own city, or simply neglect to show hospitality to our friends or neighbours, then God will certainly be critical of our actions.
It's amazing the amount of time, let alone money that is needed to look after and feed our pets. A family with a small dog spends up to $20 a week on food and care. Mrs Brown, a cat lover, owns three cats. She spends approximately $10 per day, that is $300 a month!
Just imagine what that amount of money could do in the hands of missionaries or used for God's work! That is just one person, imagine one hundred people spending an average of $300 a month! It amounts up to $360,000 a year, which could go toward a Godly project or mission.
Often parents say to their child, there is no money to buy a winter jumper or shoes, but if something is wrong with the dog or cat, it is not uncommon for the owners to rush their beloved pet to the vet, at a cost of sometimes hundreds of dollars. Christians are the salt of the earth, but the salt will quickly loose its flavour if we fail to express Biblical truth to our society.
Let us weigh up and count the cost of owning a pet.
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Copyright © 2002, Ingrid Griggs.