“Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.”
Many of God’s creatures are beautiful. However, some of them, like the appropriately named hagfish, strike us as ugly. Not only does the hagfish look like something out of a science fiction movie, it has bad habits.
The hagfish looks like an eel with whiskers. It has no scales. When handled, a slippery slime oozes from its skin, which explains its other name, the slime eel. It lives at moderately deep levels of the world’s oceans. Its single eye is beneath its skin. It has no jaw. However, it does have true teeth both in its mouth cavity and barb-like teeth on its tongue. The hagfish eats other fish, sometimes entering them and eating them from the inside out. One wonders why God made such an ugly creature that seems so disgusting.
The oldest evidence of the hagfish is a fossil in ancient rocks. While we can discount the inflated evolutionary years that are used to date these rocks, it does appear that the fossilized hagfish died when the world was still young. Yet, this fossilized hagfish is identical to the modern hagfish. To paraphrase one scientist, no evolution has taken place.
It appears that God has an important job for the ugly and impolite hagfish. The hagfish shows that evolution has not taken place. Beauty, or lack of it, doesn’t always witness to our Creator, but the truth unfailingly does!
Father in heaven, I thank You because You have revealed Your truth to us in Your Word. Help me to avoid the temptation of judging the worth of something by its appearance, and help me judge things by their witness to the truth, which is found only in Your Word. Amen.
Andrew Herrman. 1991. “North Sider’s Hagfish Story Is Really One for the Books.” Chicago Sun-Times, Nov. 1, pp. 1, 12.