And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing…
The term beast in the history of this day, as has already been stated, is employed to designate wild animals, in contradistinction from the tame, included under the word cattle. Although these are not designed so immediately or so eminently for the service of man as domestic animals, yet many, if not most of them, contribute in one way or another to his welfare — some as game for his sustenance, some by their hides and fur for his clothing, and all as subjects of interesting and profitable study. It is stated in the Holy Scriptures concerning the various branches of the human family, that "God before appointed the bounds of their respective habitations"; this is equally true of the different tribes of animals, Wise design and kind adaptation stand forth conspicuously in the arrangement which has assigned to them their several localities. The hairless elephant, rhinoceros, and tapir are obviously made for the heat and luxuriance of the Torrid Zone; and it is there they are found. The camel and the dromedary have been fashioned and constituted with specific adaptations for the parched and sandy deserts of the tropics; and here, accordingly, they have been located. Advancing to the more temperate regions, we still find all creatures, both domestic and wild, admirably fitted to occupy the zone given to them for their inheritance. And as we proceed northward, we discover given to the various animals hardihood of constitution, together with warmth of covering, increasing with the increasing rigour of the climate, till we pass within the Arctic circle, and reach the polar bears. Voyagers in those latitudes tell us that these animals disport in the regions of ice, and revel in an intensity of cold, which, to man with every contrivance of art for protection, is almost past endurance, and produces in him diseases which shortly terminate his existence — that they sit for hours like statues upon icebergs, where, if we were to take up our position for one half hour, we should become statues indeed, and be frozen into the lasting rigidity of death — that they slide in frolic down slopes of snows, which if we were to touch with our bare hand, would instantly, like fire, destroy its vitality. Who that contemplates these shaggy creatures of the pole, so constituted as to find a congenial home amid eternal ice and snow, and to take their frolicsome pastime amid the bleak and dismal horrors of an arctic night, but must confess that every creature, by Divine appointment and adaptation, is suited for its place, and that every place is fitted for its given occupants?
(H. W. Morris, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so.