Episode 72: The Pets Episode

This week Jaquelle and Sean talk about pets and how to think about animals as created by God. They also talk about the one year anniversary of This Changes Everything, Sean’s Easter sermon, and crazy bumper stickers.

Episode Navigation

05:25: The story of Sean’s childhood hamster.
08:43: What’s the most important thing we need to know about animals?
11:09: What’s the purpose of animals?
13:00: Are pets good?
21:51: What are the dangers of pets?
27:00: Do pets go to Heaven?

Recommended Resource

+“Do Pets Distract The Christian Life?” (Ask Pastor John, Episode #1001)

5 thoughts on “Episode 72: The Pets Episode”

  1. These podcasts are hilarious!

    I sheepishly admit that I bought my grandpa a “I Love My Grand-dog” bumper magnet several years ago! It was for fun because he would jokingly call my dog, Trixie, his “favorite Lentine.” With Trixie’s unexpected death over a month ago, he actually kept the bumper magnet on in her memory. However, my grandpa threatened taking it off when our new puppy playfully scratched him in the eye, Lol!

    In case you cannot tell already, I absolutely love animals (specifically dogs, but I enjoy cats too!)! I think animals are such an amazing gift from God. A gift we will probably never fully understand. As our dog passed away, my neighbor told us something that has really stuck with me. She said, “All a dog does revolves around its love for us and making us happy.” It really is incomprehensible of why God would give us such joy through these animals! But I am so grateful that He has! <3

    As you talked about pets being kept throughout history, I also thought of Exodus 12:5-6 which says, "Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male of the first year: ye shall take it out from the sheep, or from the goats: And ye shall keep it up until the fourteenth day of the same month: and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it in the evening."

    Wow! The Israelites literally had to keep one lamb in their house as a pet until the fourteenth day of the month, and then the sacrifice it to the Lord. I could imagine that it would be all too tempting to become attached to the adorable baby lamb. Maybe that was the point– to better understand the pain of sin and the process of sacrifice.

    I completely agree that we must have dominion over animals (after all, God commanded us to to have dominion over His creation!). But I also agree that animals can become idols. There definitely has to be a balance between loving/having dominion over pets and completely idolizing the pets. When I feel the urge to completely go all-out for my dogs, I constantly have to remind myself that it is only a dog (and boy, that can be hard!).

    It is difficult not to personify our beloved pets. However, as I saw my old dog dying and suffering, I could not possibly imagine trying to keep her alive any longer than her allotted time. Watching an animal in pain is truly heartbreaking, and that's where good dominion is truly a hard love.

    I completely understand calling your cat a best friend. Haha, I have a tendency to talk to dogs like they're humans!

    I frequently day dream about being reunited in heaven with my pets. However, I feel it is probably a fantasy. Even if it is not accurate, I love this quote by Billy Graham: "I think God will have prepared everything for our perfect happiness. If it takes my dog being there (in Heaven), I believe he'll be there."

    I agree with your rant– BOTH DOGS AND CATS CAN MAKE AMAZING PETS. While I am an avid dog lover, I have grown up with cats and love their funny personalities. However, I would have to disagree with the cats being smarter than dogs comment… Lol!

    Anywho, great podcast! Thanks for sharing!

    P.S. Yes, I am totally stalking your blog at the moment! Haha, it's been a while since I last visited…

  2. Well, people spend thousands of dollars to cure their pet cancer. 9 out of 10 American cats and dogs are going to die from cancer. That has much to do with their current diet, WIFI, smart meters. . . A bunch of other stuff but don’t let me get carried away. Lol

  3. I LOVED this episode! The whole time I was listening, I’d glance at my little Dixie retriever sleeping at my feet.
    You mentioned that animals do have something in them that gives them their “personality,” even though they are not a person. Also, the Bible says that ALL creation groans and travails in pain TOGETHER, waiting for the return of Christ. . . so if all creation including our pets are not going to Heaven, why do they waiting for Christ?

    1. Hey Danielle,
      Glad you enjoyed the episode. Thanks for engaging with the content and leaving a comment. As for your question, I think that when we consider the context, Romans 8 does not provide evidence that pets are going to heaven. The context concerns the redemption and resurrection of God’s people (i.e. human beings), which all of creation is waiting for as it groans. Yes, all of creation (i.e. the whole earth) will be renewed/recreated at the resurrection (i.e. God will make the new heavens and earth where there will be animals), but that does not provide definitive evidence that our pets will be in heaven. As Jaquelle and I said on the episode, we would not say that there is no possible way that our pets could be in heaven, we just think that Scripture (including Romans 8) does not give us ample evidence to support the view that they will.

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