Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains, your judgments are like the great deep; you save humans and animals alike, O Lord.
- Psalm 36:6 (NRSV)
All creatures look to you
to give them their food at the proper time.
When you give it to them,
they gather it up;
when you open your hand,
they are satisfied with good things.
When you hide your face,
they are terrified;
when you take away their breath,
they die and return to the dust.
When you send your Spirit,
they are created,
and you renew the face of the ground.
- Psalm 104:27-30
“Hey, Y’all. I want all you dog lovers out there to know that dogs go to heaven. That’s right! It’s in the Bible. Psalms 36:6. Go, look it up when you get home. … Now, cats go to hell. … Nothin’ I can do about that, I’m sorry for all you cat lovers. … No, God is a God of love and a God of miracles. I am sure He can work something out. <Looking at someone in a corner of the audience, in a stage whisper> Do you think that bought it? <a shrug>
“No, I can prove to you that dogs go to heaven. Do we have anyone here tonight that has both a wife and a dog? You, sir. I am going to prove to you that dogs go to heaven. When you get home tonight, take your wife and your dog and lock them in the trunk of your car. Then go inside and watch TV. Don’t get crazy and watch a movie marathon nor nothin’. Something that takes an hour, two hours tops. Now come back out and open the trunk of your car and see which one is happy to see ya! … It’ll be the Christian!”
- Mark Lowry (loosely translated), Dogs Go to Heaven
“Sometimes parents will tell their children when a favourite family pet dies, that Fido is in heaven. But this is not true. When our goldfish, who was called Speedy, was a little too speedy one day and launched herself out of the bowl with such force that she died – we may have held a wee burial but there was no promise that Speedy was in heaven, ‘in the sure and certain hope of the resurrection’. Goldfish are not resurrected. Humans are.
“… We understand from the Bible that animals have animal life, but they do not have human spirits. Human beings who go to heaven are there when their spirits and resurrected bodies are re-united. Animals don’t have spirits to reunite.
“I don’t think that it is reasonable to argue that particular animals go to heaven. Our text tells us that when God takes away their breath, they die and return to dust. Does that not happen to human beings? We certainly return to dust – dust we are and to dust we shall return. But we are more than dust –“
- David Robertson, A. S. K. Real World Questions, Real Word Answers
For those interested in my presentation, it went well. The timing was almost perfect. I have it on digital video, in about 6-7 files. I need to learn that part of blogging and I may need to download a video editor. My camera man cut the video into about 18-20 minute segments, which chopped some of the stories in half. I can’t complain. He came into the picture with less than a day to spare. Stay tuned, but be patient.
First, if you attended the big soiree last night and “Fido” was a Cajun dog, you would know that David Robertson misspelled the dog’s name. It should be spelled P-H-Y-D-E-A-U-X.
I should be ashamed to tell a church audience that dogs go to heaven and then dash their hopes the next day. That doesn’t mean that they go to hell. Since they do not have a soul, they simply cease to exist, but there are animals in the next life. David Robertson refutes C. S. Lewis’ idea that a special bond between an animal and a human might allow that pet to resurrect in heaven, but what is wrong for me having a litter of beagle puppies in heaven. They don’t have to be Sugar, Jessie, and Big Red. I’ll love them all the same.
Of course, I could refute Lowry’s punchline with C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity, where he argues that there is no “Christian way of doing things.” We all try to be more like Jesus, whatever that entails. It might be outwardly showing that we are happy to see someone like the dog would naturally do, but it could also involve refraining from taking the tire iron from the trunk and applying an ‘attitude adjustment’ up ‘side the head of your husband. As they say these days – Just sayin’.
Then again, we shouldn’t be analyzing humor.
Soli Deo Gloria. Only to God be the Glory.