The short answer: No. As evidence I present the wonder of ticklish rats. Who would have ever thought that rats giggle?
Humans love a good story. It might be McGyver battling super-criminals or Indiana Jones versus the Nazis. It might be “what did you do in the war, Daddy?” We love that which is wise and clever. We love the underdog who comes from behind to win. And we really love it when the hero wins unexpectedly or against impossible odds. We love the Mission: Impossible ending.
Mankind has its own scrapes from which it has escaped victorious. Adam and Eve should by all accounts have been irrevocably condemned in Eden. Instead, they came out with their skins (groan) and with the promise of reconciliation through Eve’s offspring. The whole of the Earth – man, plant, and animal alike would have been destroyed if not for the faithfulness of Noah. Abraham was “as good as dead” and without offspring but still became the father of nations. Captive Israel was in an impossible situation except for the intercession of Esther. And so on.
We’ve had modern scrapes too. It is not without good cause that sanitation was declared the number one medical advance in two hundred years; without it, human effluent would destroy most of the waters of the Earth and disease would run rampant through our cities. The discovery of coal and oil would give us warm houses and provide our iron and electricity, and without them we would certainly have burned all the forests of the Earth before being extinguished ourselves. We discovered how to fix nitrogen from the air, nitrogen being so vital to our crop growth, in time to support a population of somewhere around six billion people; without it, we would have perpetual worldwide famine and death. And the existence of the Earth’s molten core – still molten seemingly after four and a half billion years – both protects us from planetary sterilization by the Sun and remakes the surface of the planet. McGyver has nothing on us.
At the bottom of things, however, is God. He is the ultimate story teller. Who got Adam and Eve off the hook? How did Abraham come to have a child? Where did all that coal and oil come from? Who made the core of the Earth to stay molten? It is the same one who has thwarted every move our adversary has made, day in and day out. It is the one who has formed and preserved each of the elect and brought them safely home. The one to whom every knee shall bow and every tongue confess as Lord. Dante pictured heaven as a rose, with all the elect gazing forever at the ineffable glory of God. I think, perhaps, that what they hear and see are the wonderful tales of all that God has done, going on and on forever.
“Now there are also many other things that Jesus did. Were every one of them to be written, I suppose that the world itself could not contain the books that would be written.” (John 21:25, ESV).
Thanks be to God!