But, before I do this, I would like to share this very cute picture of a man feeding a cat, which I saw in Reddit and it's also posted at Imgur. It shows to me how wonderful animals can be and how close they can come to us if we don't look down on them, but only show love and care. As we read in Genesis 2:15 "The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to till it and keep it."
First I recommend reading the very first chapter of the book of Genesis, in which we see that God uses two full days to create all the animals. He used one day to create other notable things, like sun, moon and man, but two days for all the living animals. I am not making any conclusions here, but just noting this. Then, as we learn in Genesis 2:15, we are commissioned to cultivate and care for the creation.
1. In Matthew 10:29 we learn that God cares and knows about each little bird, despite their low price in the market. "Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground without your Father’s will."
2. He cares not only for the man, but also the beasts, we learn in Psalm 36:6. "You, Lord, preserve both people and animals."
3. We know God loves the righteous and humble people. And here is another face of being righteous. You should love animals, we read in Proverbs 12:10. "The righteous care for the needs of their animals."
4. Reading Numbers 22 we see how God has empowered His angels to care for animals and to stand up for their right. The angel of the Lord asks Balaam,"why have you beaten your donkey these three times? I have come here to oppose you because your path is a reckless one before me." Numbers 22:32.
5. Now going back to Exodus 20 where the Lord gives the 10 Commandments, the 4th commandment clearly states that even your animals should rest on the 7th day. "Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns." Exodus 20:9-10.
6. Guess what. We can even learn spiritual lessons from the animals. Take a look at Job 12:7-10. "But ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds in the sky, and they will tell you; or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish in the sea inform you. Which of all these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this? In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind."
7. And it looks like the animals will live with us in the Kingdom of God and have a special status. How do you understand this passage from Isaiah 11:6-9? "The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling[a] 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."
Here's a list of what God created on each of the six days of creation:
- Day 1: The heavens, the earth, light and darkness.
- Day 2: Heaven
- Day 3: Dry land, the seas, and vegetation.
- Day 4: The sun, the moon and the stars.
- Day 5: Living creatures in the water, birds in the air.
- Day 6: Land animals and people.
- Day 7: God "rested".