Daily Devotional – May 21
The size and variety of cats are simply astounding. Yet few people looking at the amazing variety of the cat family--from lions to leopards and panthers to Persians--realize that they are extremely closely related. If it were not for the size differential, all cats could interbreed. Biologists classify different cats (such as lions/tigers, jaguars/cheetahs, margays/ocelots, bobcats/lynxes, and domestic cats) as distinctly different species. Sometimes they are even placed into different biological families because they do not naturally interbreed, live in different environments, and are of vastly different sizes. Yet a 6-pound domestic cat can breed a 15-pound margay; a 15-pound margay can produce offspring with a 30-pound ocelot; a 30-pound ocelot can be crossed with a 80-pound puma, which has been shown to be fertile with a 120-pound leopard, which has been bred with a 250-pound lion, which can produce a striped “liger” when bred with a massive 400-pound tiger.1 Thus, the entire cat family, from one end to the other, is so inner-fertile that the various breeds and families can interbreed. Contrast that with humans and our supposedly “closely-related ancestors.” Scientists have spent years trying to crossbreed humans with apes, chimpanzees, and gorillas, but the gulf is so vast that nothing has ever resulted - because mankind is not related to such animals.
So, how did such vastly different-looking cats originate? God placed all of the information needed to create the enormous variety of cats within an original “cat-type creature.” He then created a process we call “speciation,” which allows variations of offspring to mate in order to fill different environments in which they live. Biologists have shown that it takes as few as 10 generations for a completely new species to develop! God used Noah to preserve all the variety of animal life we find on the earth today. Noah did not need to bring dozens of different kinds of cats upon the ark but only two that had the broad variety of information upon their DNA code to speciate into the variety of cats we see in the world today. And only God would have known which cat had the correct coding. Thus it was God, not Noah, who selected the animals to be taken on the ark!
Of clean beasts, and of beasts that are not clean, and of fowls, and of everything that creepeth upon the earth, there went in two and two unto Noah into the ark, the male and the female, as God had commanded Noah.
~ Genesis 7:8-9
Source: "Pearls in Paradise" by authors Bruce Malone and Jule Von Vett
References for this devotional.