“Who made me is me!”

There seems to be something in human nature that makes us want to think of ourselves as powerful and independent, self-made. Nations, like ball clubs, like to take mascots that represent power and independence: lions, tigers, and bears. And eagles.

But the Bible compares human beings to conies – delightful and playful little furry rodents that could never survive on their own. They live in towns like prairie dogs do, but in rocks full of holes made by gasses when he rock was molten. And they designate watchmen that squeal at the first site of an eagle or a wildcat so their companions have time to scamper off into the safety of their holes which, by the way, are all connected.

One version of the Bible (New Century Version) calls the conies of Psalm 104 “badgers,” but no translation could be more inaccurate. Badgers are vicious loners. Conies are nothing like badgers. See Proverbs 30.

Human beings are nothing like badgers, either, though we seem to want to be. The fact is that no creature is more helpless on his own than a human being. We have no fur or feathers to protect our skin from sun and rain, heat and cold. Our claws are too fragile to tear anything but a banana peel. A real canine would laugh at what we call our “canine” teeth. We are too slow to catch antelope for dinner and too slow to avoid becoming dinner for large cats.

God created us in such a way that we need each other. And needing each other accounts for every advance in human civilization from city sewers to hospitals, public schools, and democratic governments. Oh, yes – and churches. Without humble attention to God and regular interaction with fellow believers, how weak we become! How vulnerable to the sordid ideas and arrogant boasts of “self-made” men and women who would sacrifice the public welfare for their personal fantasy of independence!


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