Animal Death is Very Good

Predators and animal death is “very good” (Job 38:39–41, 39:29–30, Ps. 104:21, 29).

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The video tells the story of how 14 wolves transformed Yellowstone. It is worth watching.

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Josh

The Yellowstone story prompted a new line of thought for me on the goodness of creation, and so, together with a quote from Aldo Leopold, made it into my book. The bigger story of how human ideas on nature shifted (with Yellowstone as a microcosm) is interesting too, and I had a go at that here.

It seems to me that the downside of Baconian science has a bearing on this, when one asks why it came to be thought that killing as many predators as possible was good. More thoughts on that history here, noting that the combination of the rise of belief that the natural creation is corrupted more or less coincided with the Baconian idea of subduing it forcibly to human ends (using Gen 1 as justification), and that more or less coincided with the first comprehensive “vermin” laws in England that targeted predators on an organized scale.

Bacon was actually Elizabeth’s legal advisor, though admittedly long after her own vermin laws were passed. Still, the intellectual climate was there to start a process that ended in the eradication of the wolves at Yellowstone. The redress came from being willing to listen to nature (Aldo’s essay centres on this), rather than impose human will on it from a position of domination. Science does seem to divide fairly neatly between those two opposing concepts.

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For humans, a peaceful physical death when one is “old and full of days” is good for those who believe the faithful are translated to the Land Above. In addition, the Hebrew word translated “good”, like many Hebrew words, has a wide variety of meanings and the opposite of evil is just one of them. http://biblehub.com/hebrew/2896.htm

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Great article: http://potiphar.jongarvey.co.uk/2013/11/14/ecology-slowly-catching-up-with-classical-christianity/

I hope I get an acknowledgement in your book :smile:. You certainly are in mine.

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Yeah, you’re right in there between Ken Ham and Richard Dawkins…

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OUCH!!! Merciless body punch! : )

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Yeah - well it was the best I could do, the book being substantially finished before I’d even encountered Josh. I even had difficulty elbowing Pope Francis in.

Long as Bob Dylan got his due.

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Woops, forgot him. I was, in fact, going to quote one song (not by Dylan but by a UK gospel writer), but the copyright had been bought up by successive people and is lost somewhere in Sony. They’d never re-issue the record, but sure as hell they’d sue me for using it.

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