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The Bible does not give any explicit teaching on whether pets/animals have "souls" or whether pets/animals will be in heaven. However, we can use general biblical principles to develop some clarity...
Romans 8 makes it very clear that everything The Lord created will be in heaven. "That’s why I don’t think there’s any comparison between the present hard times and the coming good times. The created world itself can hardly wait for what’s coming next. Everything in creation is being more or less held back. God reins it in until both creation and all the creatures are ready and can be released at the same moment into the glorious times ahead. Meanwhile, the joyful anticipation deepens. (Romans 8:18-21 MSG) What is all of creation waiting for if it is merely going to cease to exist? I don't recall a single scripture where the God of creation "uncreates" anything. Humans are the only ones with free will. We choose our destiny with or without Him. Everything else he created is "good." If even demons will continue into eternity, albeit, doomed to hell, it only makes sense that all the "good" He created will continue on into eternity.
Having just buried my beloved cat, Rocky, who had been my companion, my friend, my family for 24 years (who KNEW cats lived that long? I didn't), who had been with me through the toughest times and experiences of my life, I questioned this too. I came to realize after being saved that the Lord gave me Rocky to give me something outside of myself to care about, to buoy me through those times when I might just give up on life and living, to learn about selflessness so I could find Him. During the 3 weeks prior to his passing, he went downhill very quickly, ending up skin and bones, and I rarely left him. Daily, I leaned on the Lord for strength and direction. Suffice it to say, the good Lord granted me ALL my prayers with respect to Rocky's passing: that he didn't suffer; that he went peacefully in his sleep; that I was with him when he passed, and that He didn't take him until I was ready. Ultimately when he deteriorated beyond anything I could bear, I prayed that He take him soon, and after that one prayer, the Lord took him the next morning, Rocky in my arms. But during this difficult time I also asked the Lord to reassure me that we would reunite in heaven, for I couldn't bear to think of his passing as the end of such a gorgeous, loving creature the Lord had created that had taught me about unconditional love, as the Lord has given me, and in my scripture readings, He took me to a passage I knew not, specifically, Ecclesiastes 3 which states: Ecclesiastes 3:18-21: “As for humans, God tests them so that they may see that they are like the animals. Surely the fate of human beings is like that of the animals; the same fate awaits them both: As one dies, so dies the other. All have the same breath (literally “spirit“); humans have no advantage over animals. Everything is meaningless. All go to the same place; all come from dust, and to dust all return. Who knows if the human spirit rises upward and if the spirit of the animal goes down into the earth?” When I read that, I was convinced the Lord was telling me "Relax, I've got him now." I have no doubt in my heart because of what the Lord shared with me during that time, that Rocky is in heaven, and one day, I will hug and pet him again and we will be able to glorify God together! Animals are sinless, we humans are not. Ergo, they don't need a saviour, we wicked beings do! "Who knows if the human spirit rises upward and if the spirit of the animal goes down into the earth?” God knows! And now, with His mercy and grace, I do too. Praise the Lord from whom all good things come! For more on this topic, I found this very thoughtful exploration here: http://www.whatchristianswanttoknow.com/do-animals-or-pets-go-to-heaven-a-biblical-analysis/ Blessings, in HIM, Lynn
God has love and a plan for ALL living things so that when we read in Eccl 3:21 that man and beast has an spirit whether the one goes up and the other goes down (where to?.....I believe the spirit of ALL living thing belong to God and returns to God), it makes sense that He concerns Himself over living beings whether it's man or beast, inasmuch that He made a covenant for the sake of ALL living things after the Great flood. Gen 9:12, 15, 17. But this I know about the future plan for the animals. Just as God made a covenant with ALL living things after the flood, so here again God included in the end times at The Restoration of Israel, the animals. He has a plan not just for Israel but for the animals as well. Jer 31:27. Read this in context of Jer 30:1-24;31:1-40 The Restoration of Israel. So if man has no advantage over animals Eccl 3:18-19, why shouldn't animals' spirit not be in heaven to glorify Him through all eternity? Rev 5:13 Then I heard EVERY CREATURE in heaven and on earth and on the sea, and all that is in them singing: "To God who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honour and glory and power, for ever and ever!" (Have you ever sat down outside at the break of dawn and listen to the overpowering sound of the birds and animals greeting the new day?) Shalom and Maranatha my Brethren. Amen.
God did create the animals in the beginning. He said 'Let there be". God breathe the breath of life into man. This is not their soul but their Spirit Animals have a soul. It is their mind, will and emotions. They do not have a redeemable spirit. They will go to dust at death. God created man to fellowship with Him. Thus the separation of the two. However everything in Heaven is a PATTERN of the things in the earth. All that is here began with what was in Heaven. So our animals we enjoy today have their life limit here. No Heaven reward.
Since the bible makes no mention of this there really is no way to tell. God is all powerful and could resurrect anything he wanted to, soul or no soul. We can't make assumptions that the resurrections principles that apply to humans automatically apply to other creatures. I'm not advocating one way or the other, just stating that its an "unknown" with no solid bible evidence to support either case.
Gen 1:24 And God said, “Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds: the livestock, the creatures that move along the ground, and the wild animals, each according to its kind.” And it was so. 25 God made the wild animals according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and all the creatures that move along the ground according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good. As per the bible, the animals came into existence when god said so, but not by the breath of God (like Adam), according to biblical terms only the breath of God is considered to be soul, whereas the animals does not posses the breath of God.
Animals do have souls, you know it from God's words written at Ecclesiastes 3:21 -- Who knoweth the spirit of man that goeth upward, and the spirit of the beast that goeth downward to the earth?
For 40 years of my Christian life, I never thought pets go to heaven. However, after reading what John Piper said about this, I am changing my mind: "The only biblical point that might cause you to think that would be that God intends you to be fully happy with him. If the presence of that pet is essential for you to know and love God that way, I suspect he will be there. That might be what I would say to a four-year-old. On the other hand, to the 15-year-old or the 35-year-old or the 85-year-old lady who just lost her cat, I would say it is spiritually perilous to cultivate a love for an animal that has such a prominent place in your heart that you think you need him for eternity."
Animals may go to heaven. Why would I say they don't if I cannot research the mind of God? All things are possible for God... In heaven we may enjoy whatever property God desires to bring to us there. I hope one day to enjoy all the animals God wants to bring me in heaven! BUT... It is important to differentiate: There is no salvation for pets. Jesus did not come to Earth because of animals, Jesus came for the lost children of Israel and for us, for the human beings who needed salvation from sin & death. Animals have no soul because they were not created after God's image. Animals are all spirit, bone and meat, all property of the Lord. Their spirits return to God as soon as they die, and so does the spirit of men, which is the property of God, as well. God blew the spirit of life on all creations, and the spirit sustains the life. There is salvation for our soul through Jesus Christ. Souls go to heaven, not the flesh, and the spirit goes back to God, who provided the life, the spirit. I hope you can understand this.
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