Job 21:22
“Shall any teach God knowledge? seeing he judgeth those that are on high.”

What breathes with its feet, has thousands of jaws but no mouth, has up to fifty arms and an eye on the end of each arm? No, it’s not a new creature for the next Star Wars movie. It’s the starfish.

Arm tip of the Leptasterias polaris starfish, showing tube feet and eyespotWhen God designed the starfish, it almost seems as if He tried to see how differently He could make this creature from all the others. Depending upon the species, the starfish can have from three to fifty arms while there is an eye on the end of each one. The rough skin of the starfish is covered with tiny jaws to keep parasites from attaching themselves to the starfish. Even more amazing is the fact that each of these thousands of jaws works independently of the rest. To get its oxygen, the starfish takes water in through tubes in its feet, each containing a tiny pump and a pipe system linking it to the other feet.

The starfish presents us with the lesson that our Creator did not have to make the creation in any specific way. This is referred to by theologians as “voluntary creation.” If God had chosen to, you and I might be breathing through our feet – although I’m glad we don’t. But the biblical truth of the voluntary creation was one of the crucial ideas that provided the basis for the modern scientific method.

Dear Lord Jesus Christ, through Whom all things were made, I thank You in wonder and awe at Your creativity, and especially that You made me, and purchased and won me from sin, death and the devil. Amen.

Bob Devine, Uncle Bob’s Animal Stories (Moody Press, Chicago, IL, 1986), pp. 65-70. Photo: Arm tip of the Leptasterias polaris starfish, showing tube feet and eyespot. Courtesy of André-Philippe D. Picard. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.