Save the Pigs!

A friend told me yesterday that there’s a billboard in Milwaukee that depicts a pig and makes some jab at the Medical College of Wisconsin for their use of live pigs in one of their research labs. MCW made the decision to use pigs instead of dogs after receiving complains from PETA or a similar organization. According to one source, “Pigs are highly intelligent, social animals who have been shown to be more intelligent than dogs. Animal behavior experts agree, and scientific evidence suggests, that pigs are very smart, very sensitive animals.” I don’t care how sensitive pigs are, there is nothing that makes them deserving of special treatment.

You cannot deny the fact that pigs are and have been considered by many cultures to be dirty, smelly, despicable animals. Take for example, the German language. The word for pig, schwein, is often used as a vulgar insult. We see a similar attitude toward these creatures in Biblical days. In Matthew 7:6, Jesus exclaims, "Do not give what is holy to the dogs; nor cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you in pieces.&quot Swine are used to depict the antithesis of what is holy. If Christ is the epitome of holiness, then swine are pretty lowly.

The root of this problem lies much deeper than words. The problem is with a basic misunderstanding of the difference between mankind and animals. Animals are, well, animals. God created them, as he did mankind, and they were good, as was mankind. However, there are a few key distinctions between animals and mankind:

  1. God created man in His own image. In Genesis 1:26, we hear God say, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness.” The creatures, on the other hand, were not made in God’s image.
  2. God charged man with caring for the animals. In the second half of 1:26, we see God say, "let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth." As part of having dominion over the animals, I don’t think it’s going to be the end of the world if we have to kill, experiment with, or use a few animals in laboratory testing. After all, it was God who killed the first animal for the sake of his created beings
  3. . When God kicked Adam and Eve out of the garden, "also for Adam and his wife the LORD God made tunics of skin, and clothed them&quot (Genesis 3:21). Tunics of skin could have only been through the sacrifice of (an) animal(s).

  4. Christ came to die for mankind, not for animals.

Now I’m not an advocate of killing every pig that comes into sight or other aimless, pointless slaughter of these creatures. We need to be good stewards of what God has entrusted to us. However, what’s really the problem with using a few pigs in experiments aimed at improving science and medicine? If the death of a few swine allows us to save even ONE human life, thus giving that person more time to either a) hear the Gospel and receive Christ or b) having believed, share Christ with someone else, then I’m all for it.

10 thoughts on “Save the Pigs!

  1. Dan Musick

    Great, balanced perspective on the issue. Proponents of embryonic stem cell research likewise fail to distinguish among levels of God’s creation.

  2. Danielle

    I agree.How can people eat poor innocent pigs!!?? pretty soon there won’t be any pigs out there cause they’ll be extinct!! what will the stupid butchers do then??!! why can’t we just love and watch them instead of shoving them down our selfish throats!?!?!?!

  3. Liz

    The sad thing is that we are human beings have elected ourselves the master’s of this world, completely denying that we ARE a PRODUCT of this planet just as every other living creature. WE no longer live in harmony with the world, and we are destroying it for ourselves and every other beautiful creature out there. We will continue to manufacture, abuse, and kill animals in the name of science, progress or what have you because we have told ourselves we are entitled to it. We have even the audacity to say that the lord, our creator, has given us this power. When you act against your conscience, when you think it’s okay to inflict genuine pain and suffering against animals like pigs- then you have lost your humanity. I can only pray and hope that more people come to realize what we have become as a people, not just for the sake of the animals, but for the sake of our own survival.

  4. Erich Musick Post author

    Liz –

    I fail to see the connection you are attempting to draw between one’s humanity and their acceptance of using animals for medical testing and research. As I argued in my original post, animals and people are not equal in worth, entitlement, or respect. That being said, I am not advocating the abuse of animals, but rather simply supporting their use in advancing medicine for improving the lives of humans.

    If animals are as good as humans, then why haven’t they established their own government, transportation infrastructure, medicine, etc.?

    – Erich

  5. julianna


    In response to what u said to Liz, it would appear that you’re okay with treatment that animals suffer as a result of animal testing becasue humans are the more “superior species” then animals. Torturing an animal because u respect humans more… that would require absoltuley NO respect for animals. Do you really feel that way?

    Animals can’t build infrasturtce and medicine because we don’t give them a chance (being the more superior species and all gives us the right to do that, right?) Animals, however, are sofisticated in thier own ways. Just becasue they’e different then humans doesn’t mean that our ways of survival are better. If you watch Animal Planet, you’ll see that lions organize thier own hunting parties, prarie dogs have thier own system of undereground tunnels, and zebras stay in herds to defend off predators.

    Are these means of survival wrong becasue they’re not like ours?

  6. Erich Musick Post author

    Julianna –

    Once again you are equating using animals in testing with torturing them. In my original article, I distinguished between these two attitudes. While I expressed my support for preferring testing on animals to testing on humans, I made it clear that I do not support useless or pointless torture of animals.

    Also in the original article, I outlined my reasons for believing humans are superior to animals. I know that you do not hold the Bible in the same regard as I do, so I understand that you do not accept these reasons. Apart from these Biblical reasons, however, I think it’s plain to see that animals do not have the same level of sophistication as humans. Sure, as you’ve pointed out, they exhibit some behaviors similar to a few behaviors that we exhibit, but I would argue that even in these areas, humans demonstrate a higher level of sophistication than animals.

    You said, “Animals can’t build infrastructure and medicine because we don’t give them a chance.” Do you honestly believe that if we put a few animals in a room long enough, they would begin creating these things?

    You asked me, “Are these means of survival wrong because they’re not like ours?” Where did I say that these means of survival are wrong? There is nothing wrong with them, as they are those which are given to them by God.

    As an aside, I’m curious about your belief as to how the world got here. If you subscribe to the theory of evolution, then wouldn’t that be even more reason to support the use of animals in whatever way necessary if it benefits the lives of humans? After all, the fittest survive, and we happen to be the fittest.

    – Erich

  7. julianna

    Dude, I take the theory of evolution very seriously. At one point we were all gorillas, on the same level of sophistication as the other animals. Our means of communication and intellignce allowed us to evolve into a society where we live very differently then our fellow animal friends. We classify ourselves as the superior race just because we have all of this power as a result of different ways of thinking. If you were to lock a bunch of animals in the same room and wait a couple of days, sure, nothing would happen. What I mean by giving them a chance is letting them go out on their own without disturbing them for a thousand years, and then seeing what happens. They would evolve, just as we did. But by taking over animal’s lives, and subjecting them to animal testing and slaughter houses, isn’t the way to do so.


    Please.SAVE THE PIGS.You dont know what horror do they live.Save them and we will thank you.PIGS MUST LIVE.We make them to bacon, steaks and other meat products.DONT LET THAT HAPPEN

  9. Erich Musick Post author

    Julianna –

    Again, assuming the theory of evolution is true, think of all the opposition we were up against as we evolved to the state we’re currently in.

    As I understand it, the theory of evolution does not depend on the stronger giving the weaker a hand.

    Are you a vegetarian?

    – Erich

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