The form or practice of rendering, ceremonially or otherwise, honor or reverence to various forms of animal life or to man-made representations, or thereby attributing to them human or superhuman powers, abilities or inclinations. A false practice.
From when Eve acted on the lie spoken through a serpent and onward, organized false religions before and after the Flood have held animals as symbolically representing certain heroes or gods. In the first world empire, Egypt, "animal gods" were worshiped in great numbers. Modern Hinduism holds a sacred regard for certain animals.
Man's Superiority to Animals Clearly Established in Scriptures
Job 35:11 "Who teaches us more than the beasts of the earth, and makes us wiser than the birds of the heavens?"
Job 18:3 "Wherefore are we counted as beasts, and are become unclean in your sight?"
Man Given Dominion over the Animals
Genesis 2:19, 20 "And out of the ground Jehovah God formed every beast of the field, and every bird of the heavens; and brought them unto the man to see what he would call them: and whatsoever the man called every living creature, that was the name thereof. And the man gave names to all cattle, and to the birds of the heavens, and to every beast of the field; but for man there was not found a help meet for him."
Genesis 1:27, 28 "And God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them. And God blessed them: and God said unto them, . . . have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the heavens, and over every living thing that moves upon the earth."
Jeremiah 27:6 "And now have I given all these lands into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, My servant; and the beasts of the field also have I given him to serve him."
Animals Made Subject to Man to Provide Him with Food and Clothing
Genesis 9:2-4 "And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth, and upon every bird of the heavens; with all wherewith the ground teems, and all the fishes of the sea, into your hand are they delivered. Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you; as the green herb have I given you all. But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall ye not eat."
Leviticus 11:2, 9 "Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, These are the living things which ye may eat among all the beasts that are on the earth. These may ye eat of all that are in the waters: whatsoever has fins and scales in the waters, in the seas, and in the rivers, that may ye eat."
Genesis 3:21 "And Jehovah God made for Adam and for his wife coats of skins, and clothed them."
Proverbs 27:26, 27 "The lambs are for thy clothing, and the goats are the price of the field; and there will be goats' milk enough for thy food, for the food of thy household, and maintenance for thy maidens."
Numbers 14:8 "If Jehovah delight in us, then He will bring us into this land, and give it unto us; a land which flows with milk and honey."
Mark 1:6 "Now John was clothed with camel's hair and with a leather girdle around his loins, and was living on insect locusts and wild honey."
Acts 10:10-13 "[Peter] beheld heaven opened and some sort of vessel descending like a great linen sheet being let down by its four extremities upon the earth, and in it there were all kinds of four-footed creatures and creeping things of the earth and birds of heaven. And a voice came to him: 'Rise, Peter, slaughter and eat!'"
Under Mosaic Law Vicious Animals Were to Be Killed, Showing Their Subjection
Exodus 21:28, 35 "And if an ox gore a man or a woman to death, the ox shall be surely stoned, and its flesh shall not be eaten; but the owner of the ox shall be quit. And if one man's ox hurt another's, so that it dies, then they shall sell the live ox, and divide the price of it; and the dead also they shall divide."
Animals Were Created "After Their Kind" and Are Considered Souls; Hence, Not Inhabited by "Soul" as a Transmigration
Genesis 1:20-25 "And God said, Let the waters swarm with swarms of living creatures ["soul"], and let birds fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. And God created the great sea-monsters, and every living creature ["soul"] that moves, wherewith the waters swarmed, after their kind, and every winged bird after its kind: and God saw that it was good. And God blessed them saying, Be fruitful, and multiply . . on the earth. And there was evening and there was morning, a fifth day. And God said, Let the earth bring forth living creatures ["soul"] after their kind, cattle, and creeping things, and beasts of the earth after their kind: ... and the cattle after their kind, and everything that creeps upon the ground after its kind: and God saw that it was good."
Numbers 31:28 "And levy a tribute unto Jehovah of the men of war that went out to battle: one soul of five hundred, both of the persons, and of the oxen, and of the asses, and of the flocks."
1 Corinthians 15:39 "Not all flesh is the same flesh, but there is one of mankind, and there is another flesh of cattle, and another flesh of birds, and another of fish."
Jehovah Established His Superiority in Contest with "Animal Gods" of Egypt by Sending Plagues in Moses' Day Against the frog-goddess, Heqt
Exodus 8:1-7 "And Jehovah spoke unto Moses, Go in unto Pharaoh, and say unto him, Thus saith Jehovah, Let My people go, that they may serve Me. And if thou refuse to let them go, behold, I will smite all thy borders with frogs: and the river shall swarm with frogs, which shall go up and come into thy house, and into thy bedchamber, and upon thy bed, and into the house of thy servants, and upon thy people, and into thine ovens, and into thy kneading-troughs: . . . And Aaron stretched out his hand over the waters of Egypt; and the frogs came up, and covered the land of Egypt."
Against the ichneumon flygoddess, Wadjet
Exodus 8:20-24 "And Jehovah said . . . , behold, I will send swarms of flies upon thee, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people, and into thy houses: and the houses of the Egyptians shall be full of swarms of flies, and also the ground whereon they are."
Against the cow-goddess, Hathor, and Apis the bull
Exodus 9:1-7 "Behold, the hand of Jehovah is upon thy cattle which are in the field, upon the horses, upon the asses, upon the camels, upon the herds, and upon the flocks: there shall be a very grievous murrain and all the cattle of Egypt died."
Against Amon-Ra (symbolized by a male sheep)
Exodus 11:4, 5; 12:29 "And Moses said, Thus saith Jehovah, About midnight will I go out into the midst of Egypt: and all the firstborn in the land of Egypt shall die, from the first-born of Pharaoh that sits upon his throne, even unto the first-born of the maid-servant that is behind the mill; and all the first-born of cattle." "And it came to pass at midnight, that Jehovah smote all the first-born in the land of Egypt, from the first-born of Pharaoh that sat on his throne unto the first-born of the captive that was in the dungeon; and all the first-born of cattle."
Making Images of Animals Was Forbidden Under Mosaic Law
Deuteronomy 4:15-18 "Take ye therefore good heed unto yourselves; for ye saw no manner of form on the day that Jehovah spoke unto you in Horeb out of the midst of the fire; lest ye corrupt yourselves, and make you a graven image in the form of any figure, the likeness of male or female, the likeness of any beast that is on the earth, the likeness of any winged bird that flies in the heavens, the likeness of anything that creeps on the ground, the likeness of any fish that is in the water under the earth."
When Degraded, Man Described as on Level with Beast
Psalm 73:22 "So brutish was I, and ignorant; I was as a beast before Thee."
Daniel 5:20, 21 "But when his heart was lifted up, and his spirit was hardened so that he dealt proudly, he was deposed from his kingly throne, and they took his glory from him: and he was driven from the sons of men, and his heart was made like the beasts', and his dwelling was with the wild asses; he was fed with grass like oxen, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven; until he knew that the Most High God rules in the kingdom of men."
Titus 1:12 "A certain one of them, their own prophet, said: 'Cretans are always liars, injurious wild-beasts, unemployed gluttons.' "
2 Peter 2:12 "But these men, like unreasoning animals born naturally to be caught and destroyed, will, in the things of which they are ignorant and speak abusively, even suffer destruction in their own course of destruction."
Jude 10 "Yet these men are speaking abusively of all the things they really do not know, but all the things they do understand naturally like the unreasoning animals, in these things they go on corrupting themselves."
Death Equalizes Men and Beasts (Except Man Is Promised a Resurrection)
Ecclesiastes 3:18-20 "I said in my heart, It is because of the sons of men, that God may prove them, and that they may see that they themselves are but as beasts. For that which befalls the sons of men befalls beasts; even one thing befalls them: as the one dies, so dies the other; yea, they have all one breath; and man hath no preeminence above the beasts: for all is vanity. All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again."
Animals Perish at Death; No Afterlife
Psalm 49:12, 17, 20 "But man being in honor abides not: he is like the beasts that perish. For when he dies he shall carry nothing away; his glory shall not descend after him. Man that is in honor, and understands not, is like the beasts that perish."
2 Peter 2:12 "But these men, like unreasoning animals born naturally to be caught and destroyed."
Man Forbidden to Have Unclean Relations with Any Animal
Exodus 22:19 "Whosoever lies with a beast shall surely be put to death."
Leviticus 11:43 "Ye shall not make yourselves abominable with any creeping thing that creeps, neither shall ye make yourselves unclean with them, that ye should be defiled thereby."
Leviticus 20:15, 16 "And if a man lie with a beast, he shall surely be put to death: and ye shall slay the beast. And if a woman approach unto any beast, and lie down thereto, thou shall kill the woman, and the beast: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.''
Animal Worship Turns Attention Away from the Creator
Romans 1:21-25 "Because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God nor did they thank Him, but they became empty-headed in their reasonings and their unintelligent heart became darkened. Although asserting they were wise, they became foolish and turned the glory of the incorruptible God into something like the image of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed creatures and creeping things. Therefore God in keeping with the desires of their hearts gave them up to uncleanness, that their bodies might be dishonored among them, even those who exchanged the truth of God for the lie and venerated and rendered sacred service to the creation rather than the One who created, who is blessed forever.
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