Lions in the Garden
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MNCzSfv4hX8 When I was a child, the church taught me the great Bible stories. The Garden of Eden, Noah’s Ark, Moses and the parting of the Red Sea, Jonah in the belly of a fish; these are classics we grew up on. It was easier as a child to accept without hesitation the miraculous and supernatural elements of these stories. But soon after entering my fifties some doubts began to creep in. Having spent a fair amount of time in the Bible I began to wonder if some of those stories were allegories or didactics meant to teach a moral lesson. After all, Jesus himself used parables to convey spiritual truths. By the way, allegory is defined as:
“A representation of an abstract or spiritual meaning through concrete or material forms; figurative treatment of one subject under the guise of another; a symbolical narrative.”
As the years passed, it became easier to entertain the possibility that extraordinary Bible stories such as the Garden of Eden or lions lying down with lambs might be allegory instead of literal. It just seemed like the path of least resistance given the constant assault by the scientific community to discredit such stories. But then I occasionally come across things like this video (click link above) of Kevin Richardson, a park ranger in Africa. I don’t know if Richardson is a believer, but the image of the male lion embracing him like a friend reminds me that God does indeed pull off supernatural events and those events are not as far from our “real world” as we might think. This video is a glimpse into what it might be like when God is finished making all things new and the lion indeed lays down with lambs. And it ain’t no allegory.