Brimming with confidence, he bypassed the smaller animals and went straight to the second largest predator, the leopard. “Who is the mightiest creature in the jungle?” the lion asked. The leopard replied, “Why you are, of course.” The lion gave a mighty roar of approval as he glared at the smaller cat.
Next he confronted the cheetah, “Who is the mightiest creature in the jungle?” The cheetah quickly responded, “Everyone knows that you are, mighty lion.” “Do not forget it!” Bellowed the lion in return.
Next on the list was the elephant. The lion proudly bounded up to the elephant and addressed the same question to him: “Who is the mightiest creature in the jungle?”
The elephant, however, did not respond in quite the same fashion as the previous animals.. Instead, he calmly reached out with his trunk and grabbed the lion, whirled him around in the air six or seven times, and then slammed him headlong into a tree!
Thereafter, he pounded the lion onto the ground several times, dunked him underwater in a nearby river, and finally dumped him out unceremoniously on the shore.
The lion, beaten, bruised, and battered, barely managed to struggle to his feet. As he did, he looked up at the elephant through bloody eyes and said, “Look, just because you don’t know the answer is no reason to get nasty about it!”
On a serious note, there are those who would contend that even the mighty elephant is not the king of the jungle! Albert Kang writes:
I am thrilled to learn from the BBC that elephants are afraid of ants. In my limited knowledge of these giants, I always thought that elephants were afraid of mice. However, the truth is far from what is fable.
Elephants are very destructive and tend to destroy many trees whenever they feed on them. With the increase in elephant population, forests have been greatly affected by their extensive feeding. They strip off their barks and even uproot them.
In East Africa, there is a species of acacia tree that protects itself by having a symbiotic relationship with ants. This tree provides its branches that serve as homes and shelters for these acacia ants. Apart from that, the plant also produces nectar that helps feed these ants. Thus, when any part of the tree is disturbed, the ants will swarm to protect that part.
The researchers from American universities notice that elephants are very wary about being bitten on the soft undersides of their trunks. When they smell the ants, they will just move away from the tree. In other studies, the researchers also discovered that elephants are afraid of bees too. Whenever they hear the buzzing sound of bees, they will move away to avoid being stung.
Apart from using ants as natural allies to protect farm crops, what can we learn from this research?
To me, this is a good illusion for church unity. A single ant can do nothing. However, when united, the ants can stop elephants from invading their homes and source of food. No matter how small we are, when we are united, we can stand even against giants.
Unity is most important to the modern Church. We are thus encouraged to "make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace (Ephesians 4:3)."
Paul the Apostle is clear about how unity can be achieved, "Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity (Colossians 3:14)."
Finally, let us be reminded by another of Paul's admonitions - "Only conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or remain absent, I will hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel" (Philippians 1:27).
Let's stand firm in one spirit, with one mind striving together, by so doing, we can stand against and even chase giants!
Well said, dear brother. Wise old King Solomon would agree. For it was he (in Ecclesiastes 4:12) who reminded us that: “A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.”
SOURCES: http://aksermonillustrations.blogspot.com/search?q=ants. Those who communicate the Gospel regularly should be aware of Rev. Kang’s website. His massive collection of illustrations, mixed in with his own insightful commentary, is a wonderful tool for sharing God’s message.
NOTE: The king of the jungle story is available widely on the internet in many different forms. See, for instance: https://www.cybersalt.org/clean-jokes/king-of-the-jungle. Rev. Kang’s website has two versions of it as well.