March 2000: Page 1, 2, 3, 4

Submitters Perspective

Page 3


Cont’d from page 2

Cobras are also virulent with 30,000 deaths reported annually in China alone. They hang around crumbling ruins and lurk in roofs of huts. They’re waiting for rodents and lizards, but if disturbed by a human they will react defensively. They strike swiftly and accurately or they spit venom several feet in front of them. The venom acts as an anesthetic so the victim feels no fear, no anxiety, no pain, almost as if hypnotized.

Rattlesnakes also have deadly venom. The young are born live, rather than from eggs, and they are born ready to strike with venom sacks full. In fact, the bite of a young rattler may be more potent than an adult’s, plus multiple bites may occur as a litter of as many as 20 emerge. Emulating the rattlesnake is the harmless gopher snake. God has provided them with similar coloration and they mimic the behavior—flattening their heads, hissing, and rattling their tails (even though they don’t have rattles). Most predators don’t take any chances and leave them alone.

Snakes come in so many colors and wonderful patterns of spots, stripes and bands. When we study them, we see that they are one of God’s miraculous creations. They should be respected not reviled.


Lizards too come in a huge variety of shapes and colors. Most lizards walk on all four legs, but there are legless lizards (which are not snakes) and there’s the basilisk lizard which, when running very fast, will get up on two legs. He can even race across the surface of water on his two back legs. There’s also a lizard that “flies”—it opens out flaps of skin along its sides as it leaps off a tree branch and glides from tree to tree.

The largest lizard is the Komodo Dragon which may be ten feet long and weigh over 350 pounds. The Komodo Islands of Indonesia are a dangerous place, with more deadly snakes, scorpions and poisonous spiders than anywhere else on earth. Earthquakes, tidal waves, and monsoon rains occur over half the year, followed by wildfires in the dry grass the other half, and all around are active volcanoes. It’s no surprise, then, that a huge monitor lizard evolved here and was referred to as a dragon. It seemed so fantastic that early accounts were discounted as myth until 1912, and they are still not a well-understood animal.

Komodo dragons live 50 years or more, and they’re considered quite smart. To hunt, they lie in ambush, remembering a place they were successful before and preparing their hiding place hours in advance. When a herd of deer passes by the hideout, the dragon lunges out with great speed to knock the deer over. If they miss, they can’t run down the prey so they just go back to wait some more. If they’re successful, they will take several weeks to digest the meal, probably eating only about 12 meals a year.

Smaller but still large for a lizard is the Gila Monster, the only venomous lizard of North America and one of only two in the world. This desert dweller moves slowly, feeding on eggs laid on the ground and small rodents. Since food and water are sometimes scarce in the desert, God has provided by allowing him to store fat in his tail and live off that resource in lean times.

Another desert dweller is the horned lizard or “horney toad.” Their specific adaptations include a dull color and a flat body which makes them difficult to see, and horns and spiny scales which make them difficult to swallow. In addition, a unique defense mechanism allows the horned lizard to squirt blood from its eyes when severely threatened.

The smallest lizard in the world is the British Virgin Island gecko, which is less than half an inch long. Geckos are interesting little creatures, one of few lizards that vocalize—they emit a high squeak. They can climb anything,

even walk on ceilings, because they have special toe pads which contain microscopic hooks for hanging on. Their tails detach easily when grabbed by a predator and will continue to wiggle for several minutes, allowing the gecko time to get away. They regenerate a new tail within a few weeks.

And (He created) for you on earth things of various colors. This is a (sufficient) proof for people who take heed. (16:13)

Lizards are colorful indeed. They come in all shades of green and are adorned with yellows, oranges, and reds, even blue. And if that weren’t enough, there’s the chameleon that can change colors at will. Chameleons are also the “sharpshooters of the lizard kingdom.” They can move their eyes independently so they can keep one eye on prey as they sneak up on it and use the other eye to watch out for predators. When they get close they focus both eyes on the prey giving them an excellent binocular view. The tongue is as long as the body and tail combined and it sits rolled up in the mouth. When they let it go with a lightning strike, they are incredibly accurate. And the tip is large and sticky so they zap their prey and draw it back into their mouth.

Snakes and lizards both play an important part in preserving the balance of nature. They eat large numbers of insects and rodents, which make them beneficial to man. Their variety and their fascinating characteristics make them another proof of God’s creation.

The heavens and the earth are full of proofs for the believers. Also in your creation, and the creation of all the animals, there are proofs for people who are certain. (45:3-4)


Lydia Kelley