“And they shall be Mine, saith the Lord of hosts, in that day when I
make up MY JEWELS.”
To my dear grandchildren
Rhinos — Ugly and Mean!
“Will the unicorn be willing to serve thee, or abide by thy stable?
. . . Wilt thou trust him, because his strength is great?”
The unicorn is mentioned several times in the Bible. While no one knows for sure, some think it refers to the rhino, perhaps because the word “rhinoceros" means “nose-horned.” All rhinos have horns—some have two while others have just one. These horns actually are not made of bone but are made of hair-like fibres growing tightly together and are very tough and strong.
The rhinoceros is the third largest land animal. The white rhino of Africa (the largest) can be 15 feet long, over 6 feet tall and weigh 3.5 tons (7000 pounds). Its massive head has large, trumpet-like ears and huge nostrils on an ugly, wrinkled snout with two horns. Its hide is thick, tough and warty.
The Indian rhino (the one we see in most of our zoos) weighs two to three tons. Its loose skin hangs in folds and is the home of many parasites, which attract birds know as ox-peckers. These birds may spend all day on a rhino’s back and sides, providing considerable relief as they dig out and eat the troublesome parasites. The birds also give warning calls when other animals or people approach. This is another example of the Creator providing benefits between two creatures that are nothing alike.
These beasts are truly vicious and short-tempered. They will charge anything crossing their path, be it an animal, person or even a car or train. Although they look clumsy on their short legs, they run as fast as a horse. It is a terrifying experience to be charged by one galloping at top speed, its feet pounding the ground while it snorts loudly through flared nostrils.
The African black rhino is the fiercest of all. Its front horn, with which it defends itself, is two to three feet long. Its eyesight is poor, but a strong sense of smell and extra-sharp hearing make up for that problem. They are lightening fast when charging and extremely dangerous when wounded.
Rhinos are often hunted for their horns, which sell for high prices on the black market. Natives who like to cary daggers with handles made from the horns also hunt them. Although protected by the governments of Africa and Southeast Asia, poachers kill great numbers illegally just to get the horns. It is feared these animals may someday become extinct unless the poaching can be stopped.
When those who have accepted the Lord Jesus as Saviour are with Hm in heaven, we will learn and understand why such creatures as rhinos have been given a place in His creation. Meanwhile we can say,
“Thou art worthy . . . for Thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created” (Revelation).
Love you all - Grandpa