Thursday, August 2, 2012

Are There Animals/Pets in Heaven?

By Lisa Grace 

Since this time of year focuses on love, nothing quite proves love like the loss of a loved one. Sadly, our golden retriever, Taffy, passed away two years ago at Christmas. This was our second one without her. My daughter never knew a day without her beloved dog before Taffy’s death. 

At school this year, our daughter (now in the second grade) announced the hope of seeing her beloved pet in Heaven someday. 

Her teacher informed her, “There will be no animals in and certainly no pets in Heaven.” My daughter came home from school in tears at the thought of never seeing her beloved pet again. 

Unfortunately, I’ve come across several teachers and preachers who say there won’t be animals in Heaven. 

I disagree and I believe I have Biblical proof on my side. 

In a way, this is kind of thinking is funny because I’ve heard many a Baptist, Lutheran, Pentecostal, and Catholic sermon where they boast of the feasts they will have in Heaven. And as far as I can remember, not a one was talking about a vegan feast either. (All though my Messianic Rabbi does.) So if they’re going to have animals to eat (which is another whole post in itself, which I’ll be happy to chat about on another day), why in Heaven wouldn’t they be there as pets? 

There is plenty of proof in the Bible that animals will certainly be there. For instance, when the new Jerusalem descends and we have that perfect time on Earth, where will the animals come from? The Bible says the world will be destroyed and there will be a new Heaven and a new Earth. (Rev 21:1) . 

The prophet Isaiah talks about the time after the judgment and how the lion will lie down with the lamb, and children can play with asps and scorpions. It even says the lion shall eat hay. (Isaiah 11:6; 11:8; 66:23). 

Another proof is that this world is a shadow of Heaven. For it to be a shadow, the real thing must exist in Heaven. (Hebrew 8:5 NIV)

In the book of Romans it says the whole of creation calls out. Why would animals be crying out if it leads to their ultimate destruction? Obviously, they’re longing for paradise too. (Rom 8:22)

In the book of Philippians it says all things in the earth and under the earth and in heaven (implies living things) that every knee should bow. Things? (Philippians 2:10) 

It gets better. In the book of Revelations it mentions every creature in the sea. (Rev 5:13) How’d they get there if the seas are destroyed? They’re either re-created or they’re there to begin with. 

The best proof there are indeed animals in Heaven is the fact that it says the Messiah will come back riding on a white horse. (Rev 6:2, 19:11) Horses are mentioned as coming from Heaven fourteen times in the book of Revelation (eight verses say horse, six say horses).

And the best proof? The four beasts before the throne are mentioned over and over. It mentions angels separately, so these are not classified as angels. There are wonderful creatures in Heaven that we have not seen yet on Earth. (Revelations 19:4) 

There are clearly animals in Heaven so while it doesn’t specifically say “pets”, I believe there are. Why? Because very few things bring pure joy like the love from a pet and to your pet; and as we know, God is love. (1 John 4:8, 1 John 4:16)