“Trophy hunting is the selective hunting of wild game for human recreation. The trophy is the animal or part of the animal kept, and usually displayed, to represent the success of the hunt.” - Wikipedia
You’ve all seen photos of some smiling, kill-happy “hunters” kneeling by their dead giraffe or lion, or some other exotic animal – scenarios that make normal human beings angry and sick to their stomachs. The thing is, we see these “heroes” every once in awhile - proud “game hunters” posing next to their “trophy kill.” Recently, one of these sickos posed next to a giraffe he had just killed – a docile animal that wasn’t bothering anyone, but would certainly look great stuffed and mounted on a wall….
What bothers me is that some have the audacity to use scripture to suggest that “trophy killing” is perfectly fine because “God gave us dominion over animals.”
Well, not so fast! If you’re going to quote the Bible, you had BETTER know what you’re talking about because Scripture doesn’t say one word about “trophy killing!” YHWH gave us the right to kill and EAT – NOT to kill for the sheer joy of killing so you can get your name into the Guiness World Book of Records!
In Genesis 6:5-8, we discover that the Fall brought man to new depths. YHWH was sorry that He created mankind and planned to destroy every living thing (which He repeated in verses 17-19):
Genesis 6: 5 ADONAI saw that the people on earth were very wicked, that all the imaginings of their hearts were always of evil only. 6 ADONAI regretted that he had made humankind on the earth; it grieved his heart. 7 ADONAI said, "I will wipe out humankind, whom I have created, from the whole earth; and not only human beings, but animals, creeping things and birds in the air; for I regret that I ever made them." 8 But Noach found grace in the sight of ADONAI. (CJB)
Now, pay close attention to this: Most children's stories center around the idea that Noah took two of every animal onto the ark. However, Genesis 7:2-4 reveals that He did ordered "two of every kind" of UNCLEAN animal, and "seven of every CLEAN animal!" Why? Well, the answer lies in Genesis 8:17-22. Noah's first act, upon setting foot on dry land, was to sacrifice one of every clean animal. With "clean" animals being sacrificed, it seems that more were needed so that they could survive and reproduce….
In Genesis 9:1-5, we see YHWH making His covenant with Noah, wherein Noah is reminded of the elements of the covenant with Adam - and we discover that this new covenant did not "replace" the old; rather, it augmented it. BUT NOW, we also discover the reason why animals suddenly came to FEAR MAN: Because animals now "became food" for man:
Genesis 9:2 The fear and dread of you will be upon every wild animal, every bird in the air, every creature populating the ground, and all the fish in the sea; they have been handed over to you. 3 Every moving thing that lives will be food for you; just as I gave you green plants before, so now I give you everything - 4 only flesh with its life, which is its blood, you are not to eat. 5 I will certainly demand an accounting for the blood of your lives: I will demand it from every animal and from every human being. I will demand from every human being an accounting for the life of his fellow human being. 6 Whoever sheds human blood, by a human being will his own blood be shed; for God made human beings in his image." (CJB)
And check this out, as we also discover, to our utter amazement, that YHWH established His covenant not just with MAN but also with the ANIMALS and BIRDS and EVERY LIVING CREATURE!
Genesis 9:9 "As for me - I am herewith establishing my covenant with you, with your descendants after you, 10 and with every living creature that is with you - the birds, the livestock and every wild animal with you, all going out of the ark, every animal on earth. 11 I will establish my covenant with you that never again will all living beings be destroyed by the waters of a flood, and there will never again be a flood to destroy the earth." (CJB)
If animals were of no consequence, then WHY would our Creator have bothered to include them in a covenant? He clearly viewed them as living, breathing beings with the ability to THINK and COMPREHEND and UNDERSTAND! (After all, they are able to live their entire lives outside in the elements, eating, breeding and taking care of their young.)
Take, for instance, the story about Balaam's donkey in Numbers 22, which certainly seems to suggest that animals THINK and have a "sense of self."
In this story we are told that the donkey sees an angel while its master, Balaam, does not. While there is no mention of YHWH "opening the eyes of the donkey to see the angel"; the passage says that Balaam did not see the angel until God opened his eyes. Why? Could this be because animals have a different awareness, or spirit?
Anyone who has ever owned a pet knows they have some special, uncanny "senses" that sometimes leave us wondering, "How did it KNOW?" ... But, obviously, no one can say for sure - except, of course, for YHWH - who cared enough for the animals that they were allowed to enter the post-flood world AND to, in the future, enter the "new heaven and new earth!"
By the way, note that when YHWH "opened the mouth of the donkey", the donkey didn't speak God's words. Instead, it complained of the ill treatment at the hands of Balaam! The donkey let Balaam know in no uncertain terms that it has always been an obedient donkey, and did not deserve to be mistreated! This would seem to allude to the fact that the donkey had "a sense of self".
So, Mr. and Ms. Trophy Hunter – please consider the above the next time you callously take an animal’s life, just to make a name for yourself!
Here are some examples of men proud of their “killing” drive. Even though deer are considered “clean” animals, it is sickening to know that there are people killing for the sheer JOY of killing and getting a trophy! They aren’t hunting to “eat”; they’re hunting to get their names into the Guiness World Book of Records!
Check out this “brave hunter” who, after four years of stalking a 39-point buck, finally managed to “bag him”… And this “trophy buck” was a 47-point. And just for good measure, here are tons of photos of “brave hunters” with their “trophy kills.”