Animals in Heaven?








Scriptural Reference:
Isaiah 11:6, "The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them."

Isaiah 11:7-9, "The cow and the bear shall graze; their young ones shall lie down together; and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. The nursing child shall play by the cobraís hole, and the weaned child shall put his hand in the viperís den. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all My holy mountain, for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea"

Isaiah 65:25, "The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock: and dust shall be the serpent's meat. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain, saith the LORD."

Over the years I have had my share of pets. Some I have taken great care of. While some, when I was really young, I could have taken better care of. It is easy to imagine that I am not alone in this story of having relationships between myself and animals. The interesting thing that I have heard is the division between those who are strongly convinced that there will be our pets in Heaven and those who flatly deny. This is where our reflection comes into focus.

The above scriptures tell us of the relationship of some rather diverse animals. How they will be blessed with peace and pose no threat to those who will live in this future paradise. Such images of innocent babes playing near what now would be dangerous places. So if these random and varied animals are to be found in Heaven, why shouldn't our pets also find their way there. Imagine the joy of being reunited with the family dog or cat. Well, in fact being reunited with the seven or more pet dogs you may have had through your life here on earth. Do you start to feel a little overwhelmed at the very thought of so many pets all running at you at once? The care and maintenance of one of them at a time may have been at time challenging. So now you can start to worry about all of them looking to you to be fed at the same time? I am not so certain that this scenario will be played out.

Perhaps it would be better to imagine that our pets were gifted to us here on this earth as a sort of way of teaching us many of life's important lessons. Such as to be able to care for others. Or perhaps to look beyond our own needs and desires. While we care for a pet we also learn valuable insights into how to care and respect others. There are several prisoner reform courses where the residents (previously inmates) are given a pet to care for. Some are given dogs while others are given native birds in need of care before release. In both cases the residents learn important empathy skills that will help them when the return to society.

So what might happen in Heaven if our pets are there but not in the same relationship with us as we once knew? This is more conjecture than logical fact. Based primarily on the lack of Biblical references to pets and Heaven. It is my belief that God brings a pet into our lives as mentioned. To teach us important life skills. When the pet passes on, God may send the spirit of the pet to a new owner. Something that would be up to God and not beyond his majestic ability. When we final find our rest and join God and our Lord Jesus, we will see once again the pets we once knew. But they will be free and able to travel around Heaven to meet and be with the many humans who had known them. Perhaps a little fanciful, but just the same still within the scope of a God that has made and designed all things to be good and useful.

So next time someone tells you that pets are not in Heaven ask them if God ever makes something that has no eternal value. Challenge them to think of our Pets as Gods animal angels sent to guide, teach and encourage us through life. If they still refuse to see your point of view, just smile and walk away. No need to get bogged down in arguments with people who have little empathy for your point of view.

Heavenly Father,
I pray that I may be found,
Worthy of the,
Of an earthly pet.
That one day I'm able to,
Reunite to,
Walk with,
In our Heavenly abode.