I read an article in the New York Times today about the scientist Peter Wohlleben. He wrote a best-selling book called, “The Hidden Life of Trees: What They Feel, How They Communicate – Discoveries From A Secret World.”
The book sounds wonderful and I decided to buy it. As I was reading, I remembered this verse from the Bible, “For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now.” Romans 8:22
“…It refers, as I suppose, to the whole animate creation; to all living beings; to the state of all created things here, as in a condition of pain and disorder, and groaning and death. Everything which we see; every creature which lives, is thus subjected to a state of servitude, pain, vanity, and death.”
Groaning – Greek, Groans together. All is united in a condition of sorrow. The expression denotes mutual and universal grief. It is one wide and loud lamentation, in which a dying world unites; and in which it has united “until now.”
And travails in pain together – This expression properly denotes the extreme pain of parturition (giving birth). It also denotes any intense agony, or extreme suffering; and it means here that the condition of all things has been that of intense, united, and continued suffering; in other words, that we are in a world of misery and death. This has been united; all have partaken of it: it has been intense; all endure much: it has been unremitting; every age has experienced the repetition of the same thing.
All creation has suffered because of sin. I’m sure the animals didn’t kill each other and eat each other. Trees didn’t die – nothing did. But when Adam and Eve sinned, all of creation was changed. The Bible says the wolf and the lamb were made to sleep together, but that isn’t the case now.
A few times, I’ve watched nature shows with my husband. We can see many of these shows because we have Netflix. But almost every time, I quit watching because I don’t like seeing animals kill each other. It is hard to find a movie that doesn’t have that featured. I’ve told my husband, “I love nature from a distance. As soon as you see it close up, it is sad. (Or creepy, I hate bugs.)
I’m looking forward to heaven where all people and animals will be at peace and full of love. (And hopefully, no bugs.)
“The wolf will live with the lamb,
the leopard will lie down with the goat,
the calf and the lion and the yearling together;
and a little child will lead them.
The cow will feed with the bear,
their young will lie down together,
and the lion will eat straw like the ox.
The infant will play near the cobra’s den,
and the young child will put its hand into the viper’s nest.
They will neither harm nor destroy
on all my holy mountain,
for the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the Lord
as the waters cover the sea.”
“Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
“See, I will create
new heavens and a new earth.
The former things will not be remembered,
nor will they come to mind.
But be glad and rejoice forever
in what I will create,
for I will create Jerusalem to be a delight
and its people a joy.
I will rejoice over Jerusalem
and take delight in my people;
the sound of weeping and of crying
will be heard in it no more.
“Never again will there be in it
an infant who lives but a few days,
or an old man who does not live out his years;
the one who dies at a hundred
will be thought a mere child;
the one who fails to reach a hundred
will be considered accursed.
They will build houses and dwell in them;
they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit.
No longer will they build houses and others live in them,
or plant and others eat.
For as the days of a tree,
so will be the days of my people;
my chosen ones will long enjoy
the work of their hands.
They will not labor in vain,
nor will they bear children doomed to misfortune;
for they will be a people blessed by the Lord,
they and their descendants with them.
Before they call I will answer;
while they are still speaking I will hear.
The wolf and the lamb will feed together,
and the lion will eat straw like the ox,
and dust will be the serpent’s food.
They will neither harm nor destroy
on all my holy mountain,”