Did you know One of the most frequently mentioned animals in the Bible is the sheep or lamb. It not only provided man with clothing and meat, it also was a very important animal used in religious sacrifices unto the Lord. Isaiah 53:6 says, “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way.” Because we have all sinned against God, Jesus came as the Lamb of God to be the ultimate sacrifice for our sins. All who have repented from their sins trusting Jesus to forgive and save them are now part of the flock of God over which Jesus is the Chief Shepherd. If we follow Him, Jesus promises us to be our constant provider.
Talk about It According to Psalm 23, what are some ways the Good Shepherd, Jesus, provides for us?
Did you know Camels were one of the basic beasts of burden in Bible times. We read of them carrying heavy treasures as well as people to their destination. The first time camels are mentioned in the Bible is in a list of the wealth of Abram. To show the owners wealth, sometimes the camel would wear ornaments around the neck. John the Baptist was clothed in camel’s hair. Jesus used the camel to teach on the danger of loving riches more than the righteousness of God. The sad reality is that many who love riches, do not love God, and as a result will not make it to heaven. It’s like trying to squeeze a camel through the eye of a needle.
Talk about it How can a rich man, or anybody for that matter, make it to heaven?
Big Idea Jesus Christ is the richest treasure, make Him your greatest pleasure.
Did you know The sparrow is one of the smaller birds. In Bible times they were of very little value. The Bible says two sparrows were sold for a farthing. A farthing would be comparable to a penny. The sparrow is of little value because there are so many sparrows in the world. Yet Jesus uses the sparrow to teach us of the value of our human life. Although the sparrow numbers many, God know when one dies. God also knows exactly who we are and what we are going through in life. He wants us to know we have nothing to fear or be worried about in life because if God cares for a little bird surely we are of more value than many sparrows in God’s eye’s.
Talk about it If God knows the number of hairs on your head, what else do you think He knows about you?
Big Idea If to God the sparrow is of great value, How much greater value have you.
Did you know The eagle is one of the most majestic birds of the air. They are swift in flight and once they reach their adult stage they have no known natural predators. In our life, we must learn to patiently wait upon the Lord for strength because our strength and wisdom will fail us. When we wait upon the Lord we find that He will be our strength. In the Lord, our strength can be renewed. In the Lord, our strength will soar like an eagle. In the Lord, our strength will not grow weary. This is what the Lord promises to those who gather close to the Him. If you become exhausted with life maybe it is time to rest patiently with the Lord.
Talk about it According to Isaiah 40:28, why can we depend upon the Lord for strength?
Bid Idea If like an eagle we wish to soar, We must wait patiently with the Lord.
Did you know One of God’s most creative creatures is the spider. They have been found on every continent, except Antarctica, and as the Proverb says, they are even in the king’s palace. God has placed a lot of variety in the spider kind, so much so, we have discovered over 45,000 different varieties within the spider kind. Some spiders are harmful to mankind while others are harmless. As a result, there are people who do not like spiders at all while others are absolutely fascinated by this amazing creature. God designed the spider to do what is does with meticulous accuracy landing the spider in a list of creatures with creatures of wisdom.
Talk about it What makes the spider such a wise creature of God’s amazing creation?
Big Idea One look at the spider’s tapestry, Reveals a masterpiece of ingenuity.
Did you know Dragons are often relegated to legend and lore. However, with frequent use of the word dragon in the Bible, there has to be something more than just a fairytale. When the word dragon is used it is often in context with something that is familiar with us today. The word dragon describes some sort of giant land dwelling beast, an aquatic animal dwelling in the depths of the sea, a stealth serpent like creature, and is used in comparison to fast land bound birds. It could very well be that the biblical word dragon is synonymous with our much newer word dinosaur. God created the amazing dragons to bring glory unto Him.
Talk about it What are some familiar animals or creations of God listed in Psalm 148 along with dragons?
Big Idea Dinosaurs that walked with man, All are a marvelous work of God’s hand.
Did you know Dinosaurs were created by God on the same day as God created man and therefore man and dinosaurs lived at the same time in history. About six thousand years ago, on day six of the creation week God created all the land dwelling animals and He also created man to have rule over them. It is taught by some that dinosaurs lived millions of years before mankind ever came around but that is not what God taught a man by Job. Behemoth is a creature Job would have been familiar with. Some call behemoth a long-neck dinosaur being part of the sauropod family. It takes a big God to create such a big creature.
Talk about it What are the characteristics of Behemoth that make it impossible to be a hippo or elephant?
Big Idea Behemoth is a mighty sauropod, Chief in the ways of God.
Did you know We are still discovering new creatures living in the depths of the sea. One such sea fairing beast who dwelt in the depths of the sea is called Leviathan in the book of Job. It was a massive marine reptile sometimes referred to as a sea monster. Today, we find their fossils buried in rock layers so we know they lurked in the ocean. God describes them as having protective scales, a very strong neck, and a deadly fire breathing bite. Job, a historical figure, had to have been familiar with Leviathan. He responded with a belief that God can do anything and that God’s wisdom is too marvelous to completely comprehend.
Talk about it What are some other characteristics of Leviathan showing the creative power of our God?
Big Idea Consider the might of Leviathan, It will humbly crush the pride of arrogant man.
Did you know The unicorn is an actual creature God created to bring glory unto Himself. Some say the Bible is a fairytale because of the mention of unicorns. It is worth noting that the unicorn is mentioned in the same chapter with other animals we are familiar with. Some liken the unicorn to a beast like a rhinoceros. It was a very strong beast that looked ideal for plowing a field but man could not tame the unicorn to do his labor. Job was to compare his inability to tame the unicorn to man’s inability to confine God. Our God is far greater than the greatest of beasts and it is us who should submit to the Lord instead of us trying to tame Him.
Talk about it Can you name some other animals you are familiar with that are mentioned in Job 39.
Big Idea The wisdom of man is so lame, To think our Creator we can tame.
Did you know The locust is commended for its wisdom. Although it is small it appears to be very wise the way a swarm of locust band together without a ruler. In Bible times, God would often use the locust as a form of judgment to get people’s attention. As the eighth plague upon Egypt, God sent locust to cover the land. The land was darkened and the locust devoured every herb and fruit tree leaving nothing green in the trees. God also sent locust during the time of the prophet Joel and even warns of locust like creatures invading the earth during the time of tribulation to come. The God who rules the locust desires to be the ruler of our heart as well.
Talk about it Could you imagine eating a locust? Look up Mark 1:6 to learn who the Bible says liked to eat locust.
Big Idea The heart of man has room for only one King, To the Lord of our salvation let us sing.
Did you know Even though flies can be a nuisance, they help keep our land clean by feasting on fermenting matter. As a result of their poor hygiene, we do not like it when a fly lands on our food or is found dead floating at the top of our drinking glass. Solomon said dead flies can cause an entire bottle of perfume to go bad. What is worse than the pesky fly ruining a bottle of perfume is a person allowing minor faults to define their good character. It only takes one silly action to ruin a good reputation. Instead of being guided by wisdom for the honor of the Lord, a little folly leads to stinking smell that nobody wants to be around.
Talk about it What are some silly actions that can cause a really big stink?
Big Idea The next time a dead fly you see Remember to flee from your folly.
Did you know Swine are considered to be an unclean animal, according to Biblical dietary laws. Even today you will not find very many Jews or even Muslims eating any meat that comes from the pig because they are not clean. Jesus uses the swine to teach us an important truth about guarding things that are holy. Could you imagine a pig wearing a pearl neckless? The pig would rather have a ring of dirt around it’s neck instead of precious pearls to flaunt around. When it comes to the holy truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ we should take great care to guard it by affirming it’s truth’s against those who would like to destroy it.
Talk about it What are some holy things of God we should guard with all of our heart?
Big Idea As a pig could care less about a pearl Neither is holiness cared for by our world.
Did you know The ox, or the cow, played an important part in the life and times of the Bible. Today, we rely upon the cow for food, milk, farming, and clothing. There is nothing quite as good as sitting down to eat a pot of roast beef, a big juicy cheeseburger, or a fine slice of steak. You can have the finest food on your table to eat but it is not very enjoyable if there hatred at the same table. God says that a salad taste better than the finest meat served with hatred in the heart. If you want to enjoy what the Lord has placed in front of you to eat, stop complaining and start speaking with love instead. Love even makes vegetables taste good.
Talk about it How does hatred effect the way we see life and what is the God’s remedy for hate?
Big Idea It is very difficult to love the food on your plate If your heart is filled with hate.
Did you know There once was a man, by the name of Jonah, who was swallowed by a giant fish and lived to tell about it. The Bible says he spent three days and three nights in the belly of the fish because he chose to disobey the Lord. While he was there is cried out to the Lord for forgiveness and mercy and before he knew it the giant fish vomited him out on dry land. Jonah then went on to obey the Lord, although he did so reluctantly. Some people don’t think such a thing could happen, but Jesus indicated it really did take place. This account in Scripture is just as real as Jesus dying on the cross and rising from the dead three days later.
Talk about it After reading Jonah chapter 2, is there anything in your life that you need to ask God to forgive you?
Big Idea Jonah spent three days and nights in the whale Because against God he chose to rebel.
Did you know Sometimes in the Bible, a male deer is called a hart. In Psalm 42, the deer is seen running to the water brooks. It is a picturesque scene teaching us the importance of longing after the refreshing presence of God. The soul of man can become parched and rather discontent from the normal circumstances of life. Various things are tried to remedy what seems to be a hopeless problem, but this Psalm points us to the ultimate source of hope. Hope in God. Long for Him and His presence like you would a cool cup of water after a hard days work on a hot summer day. When circumstance seem unfavorable hope in God.
Talk about it What were some of the problems facing the psalmist?
Big Idea If you are tempted to lose all hope, Turn to the Lord, he will help you cope.
Did you know In Bible times the horse was the choice animal to ride into war. It was a symbol of power, rank, and prestige. King Solomon had 12,000 horses for his cavalry, 4,000 horses for his chariots, and built magnificent stables to corral them all. The Bible even talks about the different colors of horses being black, red, grey, and white. Sometimes armies would depend upon the military might they had in horses. God wanted His people to learn to trust in Him for their strength, safety, and wisdom in order to be victorious in battle. Life can be like a battle, we too must learn to depend upon our God instead of relying upon ourselves.
Talk about it What council should we receive from the Lord and what does God promise to those who receive it?
Big Idea The horse is majestic and strong, But to the Lord does the battle belong.
Did you know An old biblical name for donkey is ass. Mankind has used the donkey for centuries to carry their possessions and we even have accounts of people in the Bible riding on a donkey. When Jesus made His triumphant entry into Jerusalem He rode upon the back of a young donkey. Probably the most familiar account of a donkey in the Bible is the one God caused to audibly speak to the false prophet Balaam with the voice of a man. Donkeys can be stubborn and Balaam’s donkey was just that. The donkey would not move until Balaam heard the message from the Lord.
Talk about it What was the message Balaam needed to hear from the Lord? Numbers 22:28-33
Big Idea Rebellion was in Balaam’s heart, From foolishness he would not depart.
Did you know The mule is a crossbreed between a horse and a donkey, and a mule cannot reproduce a mule. They are generally a little smaller than a horse and are known for their gentleness, obstinance, and hardiness when it comes to work. In the Bible we read of kings riding upon a mule. We also read about the son of a king whose mule rode off when the son’s long hair became tangled in a tree. The Lord commands us to not be like an untamed mule. They have no understanding, or go their own way without a bit and bridle for their mouth. Without restraint this powerful creature could hurt the very one who cares for it.
Talk about it According to Psalm 32, what does the Lord desire for us to be guided by?
Big Idea As a bit and bridle are good for a mule, God’s instruction guides from the way of a fool.
Did you know Conies are on the restricted dietary laws of the Old Testament. They are a small, fury, pudgy creature sometimes called a hyrax or rock rabbits. They do not have long ears like a rabbit and they scurry amongst the rocks instead of hop along the ground. They grow to be as long as two feet and weigh as much as nine pounds. Some silly scientist believe the small coney is a close ancestor to the giant elephant because of some similar features. However, their similarities point to a common Creator. God created the coney and made it a very wise creature living amongst the rocks for their refuge from predators.
Talk about it According to Psalm 94:22, where should we find our refuge?
Big Idea The Lord is our rock of refuge from the constant pursuit of evil’s deluge.
Did you know In the Bible the bear is seen as a strong and mighty beast. Once, children were mocking Elisha, the prophet of God. As they were calling him a bald head, all of a sudden a bear came out of the woods and devoured them all. We should not speak ill of the handiwork of God. There also was a time when young David was set to fight the giant Goliath. He knew God would deliver the vile giant into his hands because while he was tending his father’s sheep God helped him to protect the sheep by killing a bear with his hands. With God’s help we can overcome what seems to be impossible obstacles.
Talk about it What is God trying to teach us about the folly of a fool when compared to a mother bear robbed of her cubs?
Big Idea If the folly of fools we want to stay clear, The weight of God’s wisdom we must bear.
Did you know The lion is a ferocious predator. In the Bible, the devil is called a roaring lion. He is not the friend of the believer. He is our enemy and he seeks to intimidate us. Not only does he seek to seduce, but he also wants to devour us like prey. However, there is a greater lion than the devil. Jesus is the lion of the tribe of Judah. Through a right relationship with Christ we can become righteous. Proverbs 28:1 teaches that “the righteous are bold as a lion.” We do not have to be afraid of the devil’s roar. We do not have to give in to his seduction. Through Christ we can overcome the evil work of the wicked one.
Talk about it How does the Bible teach us to resist becoming the prey of the devil?
Big Idea Faith in Christ is the key, To overcome the enemy.
Did you know Although we may see the ant as a summertime pest, the Bible describes them as a very wise creature. They are wise because they are diligent workers. You never will find a lazy ant. The ant is wise because it is a willing worker. Nobody has to tell them to do what God has created them to do. They are wise because they are a frugal. They know that harvest time will soon pass so they gather food for the winter time as well. We also learn from the ant that they are very dependant on one another. All by themselves they are weak but together they can accomplish great tasks. The ant is so little yet teaches us big truths.
Talk about it What are the consequences of being lazy?
Big Idea Go to the ant and consider her ways, If you desire to be wise all your days.
Did you know The wolf is the largest predator of the dog kind. As a result they were often seen as an enemy to the shepherd whose responsibility was to protect the flock of sheep. The Bible warns of false teachers who are like dangerous wolves but are fleeced in lambs wool. The ungoldy world in which the believer lives in also called a pack of ferocious wolves. Instead of being like a wolf, God calls us to be His sheep. He has placed us in this world of wolves to be a witness of His ways. In doing so, He has called us to be wise as serpents and harmless of doves. Although the wolf and the lamb are enemies today, in the future the will live peacefully.
Talk about it How can we tell is a person is like a lamb or like a wolf? Matthew 7:16-20
Big Idea Of the wolf in sheep’s clothing beware, Examine their fruit and stay clear.
Did you know In Bible times dogs were not domesticated. As a matter of fact, there is nothing good said of dogs in all of Scripture. They were seen as scavenging varmints. Dogs are likened unto people who work evil instead of good. Dogs are called unholy, greedy, dumb, and disgusting. They return to their own vomit - gross! This makes our Scripture reading today interesting. Did Jesus just call the Greek woman a dog? In the Bible the people of the nation of Israel are often referred to as sheep. All other nations are likened unto dogs. The Greek woman wanted Jesus to heal her daughter but was she willing to believe in Jesus? Read to find out.
Talk about it Why was this Greek woman’s prayer, for her daughter to be healed, answered by Jesus?
Big Idea God will hear us when we call, And by faith save us from the fall.
Did you know The dove is a symbol of peace and safety. While the Psalmist desired to have wings like a dove in order to find rest in a chaotic world, Jesus taught us to be harmless as doves. In Bible times, the dove was the preferred sacrifice for those who could not afford the cost of a lamb. The dove was used by Noah to discover if it was safe to leave the ark. It brought back an olive branch as a sign that the catastrophic flood had abated. When Jesus was being baptized, the Holy Ghost appeared like unto a dove. All who have received the Spirit of the living God have the privilege of living in peace and safety today.
Talk bout it Why did the writer of Psalm 55 desire rest? Where did he ultimately find rest?
Big Idea If in the Lord we find our rest, We will truely be blest.