Hey Daddy, will Rocko go to Heaven? This is a question probably asked by kids around the world for a very long time… I know this question was in my mind for years, as I have always been a huge animal lover. So I set out to search scripture for the answer to this question… and after many hours I think I finally have the answer…
I have no idea.
You might be thinking, well great, thanks for the revelation! But let me share what I did find and see if you find it as interesting as I do. First, let me start with this…nowhere in scripture does it say that animals have souls, therefore there is no such thing as “salvation” for anything other than mankind. Even Angels are soulless and unqualified for salvation through Christ Jesus.
But I digress, let’s go back to the beginning of time and scripture to get started. In Genesis 1, we find the six days of creation…. where God created everything. At the end of His work this is what we find…
31 God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning—the sixth day. ESV Emphasis Added
God was finished and it was very good. Everything was prepared for mankind to live on Earth for all time… we were mean’t to live forever. How do I know this? Genesis 3:22 tells us that if they ate from the tree of life they would live forever. This was how it was supposed to be, until Adam and Eve disobeyed God and ate from the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
Now let’s go back to Genesis 2, this is not a different account of Genesis 1 as some proclaim, we are only getting a more detailed account of the sixth day of Creation. But in the text we find this…
18 And the Lord God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.” 19 Out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them. And whatever Adam called each living creature, that was its name. 20 So Adam gave names to all cattle, to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper comparable to him. NKJV
God created animals to be helpers or companions to man, but God saw that it wasn’t enough so God created Eve. If Adam and Eve had not rebelled against God, they would still be alive today and our world would look very very different.
We also know from scripture that death did not enter the world until sin entered the world (Romans 5:12). In fact the first animals killed were by God, when He made clothes for Adam and Eve (Genesis 3:21).
If death did not enter the world until Sin, then we know that all of the animals on Earth at the time lived together peacefully, not killing each other left and right like we see on Animal Planet. In fact all the animals would have been herbivores just like Adam and Eve. Why is this important? It tells me that the world God had intended… one where man would live forever, would also be filled with animals.
You ever wonder how many animals God Created?
Think about this… it is currently estimated that there are approximately 8.7 Millions species of animals living on Earth (give or take 1.3 Million). With around 6.5 Million on land and another 2.2 Million in the seas.
If you have ever spent time watching wildlife videos, especially concerning ocean life you are probably in awe of Gods handiwork, I know I am. The incredibly vast and varied number of creatures that roam the Earth is a clear indicator to me that God LOVES animals, just like most of us do… except way more.
It seems obvious to me, that when we arrive at our eternal Heavenly home (which is actually on a new Earth) not some mystical cloud-filled place in the sky (Isaiah 65:17 & 66:22, 2 Peter 3:13)… that it will be brimming with animals, just as it will be filled with vast scores of believers.
Can I prove this via scripture? There is no descriptive verse of scripture that describes animals in Heaven, but there are also no verses that run contrary to the idea. In fact the verses I wrote about in this article lead me to believe what I have shared with you today is more than likely the way it will be.
But what about my Yoomi?
Now even if we get to Heaven and find all kinds of animals walking about, this doesn’t mean we will ever see our beloved Earthly pets there. As I stated I am a huge animal lover and when I sit around and imagine eternity, my black lab Nick along with my kitties Yoomi and Toshi are right there with me.
However we must also take into account that people who own pets usually do so their entire lives and go through MANY pets throughout their time on Earth. Would that then mean that every pet would show up in Heaven with us? For some people that would be quite an entourage!!!
So at the end of the day, I do believe that there will be animals in Heaven. I am not sure about the pets that we shared time with here on Earth… but I am hopeful.
Let me ask you one question, when you look in the eyes of my Toshi-girl… how can you not picture her cute little face in Heaven? It may not be true, but that doesn’t mean I can’t imagine it!