June 13, 2013
And God said, "Let the earth bring forth living creatures according to their kinds -- livestock and creeping things and beasts of the earth according to their kinds." And it was so. Genesis 1:24
If you are a Scrabble player, I've got a new word for you. The word is "de-extinctioning."
Allow me to explain the concept. All of us know that over the last few thousand years or so a great many animals species have become extinct. Some scientists now feel confident they have a number of ways to bring those animals back. That process is called de-extinctioning.
That's right; these leaders of the scientific community think they can bring back the passenger pigeon, the wooly mammoth, the Tasmanian tiger, the infamous Dodo, and a host of other no-longer-seen-on-the-face-of-the-earth beasties.
De-extinctioning can be done one of three ways.
1. Back-breeding. Back-breeding takes place when you find some living animals with the characteristics of the extinct species. You keep on selectively breeding these animals until, voila; you have a modern version of an old animal.
2. The second way to de-extinction a species is through cloning. This method takes cells of a recently extinct animal, creates an embryo, and lets an adoptive mother give birth to a no-longer-extinct species.
3. The third method of de-extinctioning which may be tried is to take preserved pieces of ancient DNA and try to recreate the genetic blueprint of an extinct species. Any part of the code which is missing would be "guessed at" and a splice applied from an existing species.
So there you have it. Humankind is thinking about de-extinctioning various animals, many of whom, it must be confessed, we helped to extinction.
Reading through all this fascinating information I was impressed.
No, I wasn't impressed with the breathtaking breakthroughs of science; I was impressed by how much greater God is than we are.
When we try to de-extinction a species, we have to start with a genetic code. Without that code we can go nowhere. When the Lord created a species, He did so with a Word and out of nothingness. God's Word invented a multitude of unique genetic codes. But there's more. When we try the de-extinction experiment, we have to be aware that there may be many failures before we achieve even a modicum of success. When the Lord created all the animals, all the plants, He did the job and it was -- right out of the gate -- very good.
Truly, we have an all-powerful Lord.
But His greatest greatness was when He sent His Son into this world to redeem us. Jesus was born, lived, died and rose from the dead, so we sinners would not be extinctioned. When Jesus is your Savior, you can rejoice because through Him we who were dead have been made alive.
In scientific jargon, in Jesus we have become de-extinctioned.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, may I always be grateful that Jesus has taken sinners who were dead in their trespasses and given them a new lease on life. For this gift I give thanks in His Name. Amen.
PS - You should know they will not be bringing back dinosaurs because there is no dinosaur DNA.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries