The faithful dog
Dogs are amazing animals. With their fine sense of smell, they track down survivors in collapsed buildings, find drugs and weapons during police investigations, and some say they can even detect tumors in the human body. There are dogs that can detect the smell of endangered orca whales living on the northwestern coast of the USA. Dogs not only support people through their sense of smell, they also bring comfort or serve as guide dogs.
However, dogs have a bad reputation in the Bible. Let's face it, they just have some disgusting habits. When I was a little boy, I had a dog as a pet and he licked up everything that came up just before, just like a gate that finds pleasure in my own stupid words. "As a dog eats what it spewed, so is the fool who keeps doing his foolishness" (Proverbs 26, 11).
Of course, Salomo does not see things from the dog's point of view, and I believe that none of us can. Is it a primeval return to the days when the dog's mother raised her own food to give it to the young puppy, as it does today with African wild dogs? Even some birds do this. Is it just an attempt to digest the undigested food again? I have recently read of an expensive restaurant where the meal is pre-chewed.
From Solomon's point of view, this dog behavior seems repulsive. It reminds him of foolish people. A gate says in his or her heart, "It is not a god." (Psalm 53, 2). A fool denies the primacy of God in his or her life. Foolish people keep coming back to their own ways of thinking and living. You repeat the same mistakes. A fool is deceived in his thinking if he believes that the decisions made without God are reasonable. Peter said that anyone who rejects God's grace and returns to a life that is not spirit-led is like a dog that eats what he spewed (2 Peter 2,22).
So how do we break this vicious cycle? The answer is: don't go back to the vomit. No matter what sinful lifestyle we indulge in, let's not go back there. Do not repeat the old sin patterns. Sometimes dogs can get rid of bad habits, but foolish people remain stubborn and don't listen to them when warned. Let us not be like a fool who despises wisdom and discipline (Proverbs 1,7). Let us be tested by the Spirit and change forever so that we no longer have the need to go back to what we are used to. Paul told the Colossians that they should give up their old behavior: "So now kill the limbs that are on earth fornication, impurity, shameful passion, evil desire and the greed that is idolatry. For such things, God's wrath comes on the children of disobedience. In all of this you also walked when you were still living in it. Now put everything away from you: anger, rage, malice, blasphemy, shameful words from your mouth ” (Colossians 3, 5-8). Fortunately, we can learn something from the dogs. The dog of my childhood always ran after me - in good times as well as in bad times. He let me bring him up and lead him. Even if we are not dogs, could this not be informative for us? Let us follow Jesus no matter where He leads us. Let Jesus guide you, just as a faithful dog is led by its loving owner. Be faithful to Jesus.
by James Henderson