The other day a news story caught my eye because it had a clip of animals fleeing a forest fire en masse. The sight of the terrified creatures touched me deeply just as stories of poachers in Africa who wantonly kill magnificent beasts for ivory. This sorrow isn’t just because I am an animal lover; it goes far deeper than my personal affections. What is being stirred in me is the original design and purposes of God for mankind, my feelings are a remnant of Eden.
As Dallas Willard writes in The Spirit of the Disciplines, “humans were created to govern the earth with all its living things---and to that specific end we were made in the divine likeness”. Yes, rule over the zoological realm is part of the ImagoDei and we can only imagine what that might have looked like prior to the Fall. Adam’s naming of the animals (Genesis 2:19-20) was not just sticking a label on them, it was a demonstration of his God given power of insight and perception. He would have governed them by speaking, by communicating; we have a dim reflection of this in a “horse whisperer”.
I have two clips which always move me because of their beauty and the hope which they bring; for they not only look back to Eden but look forward to the New Creation which will come at the restoration of all things (Isaiah 11, Revelation 21) They are from the movie The Legend of Tarzan (2016) which I have written on more extensively for Movieglimpse: https://movieglimpse.com/the_legend_of_tarzan
Enjoy the clips but realize their power lies in our original design which has been restored in Christ Jesus and will one day be fully experienced at His glorious appearing.