Lions' Teeth Are Not for You

 •  3 min. read  •  grade level: 7
"All flesh is not the same flesh: but there is one kind of flesh of men, another flesh of beasts, another of fishes, and another of birds." 1 Cor. 15:39
Our 32 enamel-coated teeth are marvelous structures. They are arranged so the surfaces of the upper and lower teeth correspond to work together for eating and speaking. Have you ever thought about how each one is different?
In front are the incisors, or cutting teeth, remarkably shaped for taking a bite from an apple or sandwich, or snipping a celery stalk in two. Behind these are the cuspids (called canines or dogteeth), used for tearing off bites too tough for the front teeth. Then come the two pointed bicuspids, and finally the broad, flat molars to which all food goes for grinding. All these teeth are especially designed for man's needs.
The teeth of animals are different. A lion's set of teeth would certainly not be useful to you. The Creator has provided for each one's particular need. For instance, gnawing animals, such as rats, mice, horses, rabbits and others, have incisors but no canines, since these are not needed for cutting off grass or gathering grains or other items in their diet. Because these incisors wear down from constant use, God has wisely arranged that they never stop growing during the animal's life.
All flesh-eating animals have canine teeth made strong enough for tearing flesh. You can easily see these in the mouth of a dog, a lion, a cat or a tiger. These "fangs" are used not only for eating food, but also in catching and killing it. Most of these animals have rough tongues which act like rasps for removing flesh from bones. The teeth of hyenas are anchored in big, strong jaws, enabling them to break and crush large bones. Their molars have three cutting edges to help break up the skeletons of dead animals on which they feed. All these carnivorous (flesh-eating) animals bolt down their food without chewing it and do not use their molars for grinding food as we do.
Insect eaters have cone-shaped teeth which crush hard-shelled insects. Cud chewers—cows, deer, camels—have no upper incisors. Instead, they have a hard pad which forms the food into a cud before it goes on to the stomach.
The next time you brush your teeth, see how wisely God has arranged them for your use. What He has done for mankind as well as for His other creatures reminds us of the wonders of His creation and that His eye is on all to whom He has given life.
His Word, the Bible, is also likened to food...not for our bodies, but for our souls. "Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and Thy Word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by Thy name, O Lord God of hosts" (Jer. 15:16). It is certainly right for us to give thanks to the Lord for each meal set before us. Let us also thank Him for our Savior, "the Bread which came down from heaven." Jesus said: "I am the Bread of life: he that cometh to Me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on Me shall never thirst" (John 6:35). Have you thanked Him?