Do Dogs (and cats) Go To Heaven
My mom and my five year old self had seen a sign in someone's yard that they had puppies for sale. I do not remember what kind of puppies.... probably mutts (the best kind!). And they were small dogs. I spent my own $10 and bought Spud. Yes, he looked like a little baked potato. I had not had Spud long when he got out and a car hit and killed him. My heart was broken. Mom said I was "all to pieces." A southern saying for can't stop crying! She called my assistant minister who I adored and he came right over to talk to me.
What stands out in my mind was that my minister believed that Spud would go to heaven. While the Bible does not clearly state that our pets will be in Heaven with us it does suggest the presence of animals. Recently I have had the "do dogs go to heaven" talk with several people including a face book friend who lost her dog. As Christians, it helps to know we will be able to see our pets again one day. To many of us our pets are part of our family. This has been the most difficult blog I have written. I have come back to this blog three times. As I have dug deeper I continue to think they will be there. Remember, this is just my interpretation of the Scripture. My brother read a book about people who had near death experiences and many of them have said they saw their pets in Heaven.
In all of my research I continue to believe our pets will be in Heaven. There are those who do not think our pets will be in Heaven. Their argument is......bottom line.... animals do not have a soul. Also that Heaven is a place for those who have believed in Jesus.
The rest of this blog is why I believe our pets will be in Heaven. The scriptures that my minister shared with me as a little girl were the following two. It shows us that there will be animals in Heaven. Isaiah 11: 6, "The wolf will live with the lamb, the leopard will lie down with the goat, the calf and the lion and the yearling 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." Isaiah 65: 25, "'The wolf and the lamb will feed together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox, and dust will be the serpent’s food. They will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain,' says the Lord."
We know God created all the animals. Genesis 1: 24-25, "Then God commanded, 'Let the earth produce all kinds of animal life; domestic and wild, large and small, and it was done. So God made them all, and He was pleased with what he saw.'" We know all animals belong to God. Psalm 24: 1, "The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it;" Psalm 50: 10-11, "...for every animal of the forest is mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills. I know every bird in the mountains, and the insects in the fields are mine."
We know God cares for the animals. Matthew 6: 26, "Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?" Psalm 147: 9, "He gives to the beasts their food, and to the young ravens that cry." Proverbs 12: 10, "A good man takes care of his animals, but wicked men are cruel to theirs." Luke 12: 5, "Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God?” If the sparrows are not forgotten, why would God forget any other animal? If heaven is going to have wolves, lambs, leopards, goats, calves, lions, cows, bears, ox and cobra then why wouldn't we have our pets?
Jesus was born in a stable among animals (Luke 2: 7); He rode a lowly donkey in triumph into Jerusalem (Matthew 21: 5); He is prophesied to return again in glory as the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, riding on a white horse (Revelations 19: 11). The Holy Spirit is symbolized by a dove (John 1: 32). Jesus revealed Himself as a pure and gentle bird at Jesus' baptism. (Matthew 3: 16)
Obviously animals matter to God. Look at the mercy he shows in not destroying Nineveh. Jonah 4: 11, "Should I not, therefore, be concerned about Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than a hundred and twenty thousand people, who do not know their right hand from their left, and also many animals?” (MEV) God spoke through an animal. (Numbers 22: 28-33)
In Psalms we see that all God's creation have contact with Him and praise Him. Psalm 148: 9-10, "Praise Him, hills and mountains, fruit trees and forests; all animals, tame and wild, reptiles and birds." Psalm 96: 11-12, "Be glad, earth and sky! Roar sea and every creature in you: be glad fields and everything in you! The trees in the woods will shout for joy."
In Revelations we are told all creation will face the Creator. Revelation 5: 13, "And then I heard every creature in heaven, on earth, in the world below, and in the sea- all living beings in the universe - and they were singing: 'To Him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb, be praise and honor, glory and might, forever and ever.
Some ministers, including Billy Graham, say God will provide us with everything we need to be happy in Heaven -- and if animals are necessary to make us completely happy there, you can be confident He will arrange for them to be with us. My personal opinion is that I know heaven will be wonderful and I do not believe our loved ones who are there are missing us. They are so focused on worshiping their Lord and Savior that that is all that matters. I do not believe we will need our pets to make us completely happy but I believe God is awesome and nothing is impossible for Him. He loves our pets more than we do!
Yesterday as I made homemade chicken and rice soup I thought this was the first soup season without Bella and Lila who loved when I made chicken and rice. It was a sad moment but then I smiled seeing them running in the green pastures with Spud, Bambi, Davey Rags, Nubbin, Bug, Abigail and Lucy! I will leave you with Ephesians 1: 10, "This plan, which God will complete when the time is right, is to bring all creation together, everything in heaven and on earth, with Christ as head." (GNT)