It’s 2 a.m. when Nadia, a farmer of sea cucumbers, walks into a roped-off pen in the ocean shallows near her Madagascar village to harvest her “crop.” The early hour doesn’t bother her. “Life was very hard before I started farming,” she says. “I didn’t have any source of income.” Now, as a member of a marine-protection program called Velondriake, meaning “to live with the sea,” Nadia sees her income growing and stabilizing. “We thank God that this project appeared,” she adds.
It appeared in large part because God’s creation provided what their project needs—a natural supply of sea life. In praise of our providing God, the psalmist wrote, “He makes grass grow for the cattle, and plants for people to cultivate” (Psalm 104:14). As well, “there is the sea . . . teeming with creatures beyond number—living things both large and small” (v. 25).
It’s a wonder, indeed, how God’s wondrous creation also provides for us. The humble sea cucumber, for example, helps form a healthy marine food chain. Careful harvesting of sea cucumbers, in turn, grants Nadia and her neighbors a living wage.
Nothing is random in God’s creation. He uses it all for His glory and our good. Thus, “I will sing to the
Though the psalmist in Psalm 104 makes reference to various creatures in the earth, sky, and sea, only one creature is referenced using its proper name—Leviathan (v. 26). This is one of five times that Leviathan is mentioned in Scripture (see also Job 3:8; 41:1–34; Psalm 74:14; Isaiah 27:1). Who or what was Leviathan? All biblical references are in poetic passages, and Leviathan is cast in both literal and figurative roles. In Psalm 104, Leviathan is a sea creature: “There is the sea . . . and Leviathan, which you formed to frolic there” (vv. 25–26). Similarly, in Job 41 Leviathan is depicted as a large, intimidating sea animal (vv. 31–34). On the other hand, references like Psalm 74:14 and Isaiah 27:1 figuratively depict Leviathan as being a threat to God’s people and being marked for overthrow by the Almighty.