Before they call I will answer,
while they are yet speaking I will hear.
The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, the lion shall eat straw like the ox;
but the serpent - its food shall be dust!
They shall not hurt or destroy
on my holy mountain, says the Lord (Isaiah 65:24-25).
Different rules apply when you are in the holy presence and on the sacred land. When you are surrounded by the holy, God's peace is the important factor. God's peace make the world into a new and different place. Walter Bruggemann says that the elemental hostilities are ended just as the worldly hostilities are stopped. Peace prevails locally and cosmically.
Poetically this a glorious vision of the most powerful and the most vulnerable, the royal and the workers - lying together. Yet is a culture that wants to cast aside the earth that wants to control, own, dominate the earth. This vision is troubling because it is so apart from what is essential to the nature of these living creatures. For the earth to live and flourish the cycles of life must be respected. Predators must hunt. If they don't hunt, they die. If they don't hunt the populations will become huge and end up starving and dying. A natural cycle is broken.
So in God's Holy Presence and in God's sacred earth what rules would exist? Would the change come in human perception? Would we learn to thank every creature for the life given so that we might live? Would we be grateful for the cycle of life trying to be part of these cycles rather than apart from the cycles.
In God's presence and on God's sacred earth is the peace that prevails,a peace brought by a new appreciation and respect within humanity for the sacred circle of life.
God, teach us your ways of peace that we may become part of the sacred circle of life. Amen.