And God said, Let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven. And God created great whales, and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth. And the evening and the morning were the fifth day. – Genesis 1:20-23
On day five, God made the water creatures and the birds to populate the seas and the air. One thing that fascinates me here is the fact that they both came from the same source, the water. This is distinct from the beasts that were later made from the earth.
This passage describes an open firmament where the birds could fly freely without borders, predators, or hunters. First a mist would go forth and water the garden and later rain would give the trees water that they may bear fruit. This is in contrast to the shut heaven that we see much later (Deuteronomy 11:17, 1 Kings 8:35), following Israel’s sin.
Firstly, we are told that heaven is open and then God blesses them with the commission to be fruitful and multiply, to fill the waters and the earth. This is the divinely ordained sequence. Heaven must be open for blessings to come. Every good and perfect gift comes from God (James 1:17), so it makes sense that He must open the door for us to get them. Today, when we follow the Lord, He blesses us with an open heaven. Our prayers are unhindered by predatory spirits. We receive the showers of God’s blessing and we grow spiritually. His word will increase in our life and there will be a multiplication of spiritual and ministry gifts in our congregations. This blessing will spill into the physical realm, resulting in financial, health, academic, and relationship breakthroughs to name a few.
Where sin however takes hold, then the heavens are shut and spiritual decay results. The effects include bickering among church leaders, all manner of sins and vises among God’s people, and all the tiny little things that erodes God’s anointing from our lives. These all eventually result in physical bareness in our womb, field or job, finances, and health.
King Solomon prayed a very fascinating prayer at the dedication of the temple in Jerusalem. He said something like, “If the heavens are shut due to sin, if there is famine, pestilence, locust or plague. If there is war and the city besieged, or if the people are carried away into captivity, if they shall turn to God and cry out to him, let the heavens be open, let God hear from heaven and forgive. Let the prayers of the people be answered, let the land and its inhabitants be freed and regarding their struggles, let their cause be maintained.” All these blessings can only come after the heavens are opened.
Like the herbs and plants, the fish and the birds will have the seed to multiply after their kind. A bird cannot give birth to a fish or a fish give birth to an eagle. The fish would live in the water and the bird on land. These are set boundaries that God has made and will maintain till the end of this age. Every creature has its place in the eternal blueprint of the divine kingdom. There is no reason for the fish to attempt to become a bird. There are enough varieties already. Likewise there are so many species of fish that there is no point in a bird trying to become another one of them. Even within each distinct line, whether fish or bird, there are specialized genuine subspecies—many of which complement each other.
I believe each creature has its own distinct personal traits. Many do not live long enough for us to study them with our current scientific tools, but for those who have pet fishes or birds, you do know them uniquely from others of their species. To our eyes, the parrots may look the same or two goldfishes may be indistinguishable, but they are never the same.
If, even in sub-species, God made them according to their kind, why do we as men try to be someone else? In our society today, every youth has a Hollywood role model they would like to emulate, even though their lifestyle may not be worth imitation. We dress like these stars, act like them, and even speak like them. In some extreme cases, plastic surgery has helped us to start looking a lot like them. By duplicating these movie stars, we never become what we are meant to be. We long for fame and success, but we fail to realize that we will never attain such if we are like every one else. True fame lies in being different from the rest, in thinking outside the box, in standing apart from the crowd.
Unless you are a migratory bird or fish that stays in a herd to survive, having a herd mentality will make you like everyone else, easily dispensable. Unfortunately, our society today does not tolerate individual differences or independent thinking. It is a reason for the rampant proliferation of city gangs, the pinnacle of herd mentality in mankind. From childhood, we learn that to be different leads to being bullied by other school children. If we persist, we become ostracized and cast away by society. So we quickly learn to be like everyone else. We become a member of the herd, led away by popular culture and, more recently, social media. It is they who determine who or what we become. We are seldom really content in such a lifestyle and we try even harder to fit in. We measure success by how well we integrate and be what people think we should be. When we do not measure up, frustration and depression sets in leading to sickness and, in some, suicide. So many talents are ultimately buried or killed off, a shameful loss to our generation.
This, unfortunately, is not limited to the secular world. I have seen Christians whose idea of successful Christianity is to be like their idol, a prominent minister. There is nothing wrong with having a role model, but we are not expected to be a carbon copy of our pastor. We do not need to dress, speak, and look like him. We do not have to act like or make the exact same choices he has made. There will never be two people exactly alike. These attempts will only produce, at best, a low-quality replica of the other.
Rather than copy, aspire to be unique, to be the best you that you can possibly be. We may be twins born the same day in the same year, and in the same hospital, but we are different people. Even if we die in the same place at the same time under the same circumstances, we shall stand before our Maker separately. If these are true, then should we not live our lives as separate people who will give account of the life we have lived? I do not know about you, but I have no wish to stand before the great Judge on the last day and claim that I was trying to be a better David Pawson than David Pawson has ever been.
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