Daily Word of Grace # 155 (October 19, 2020)

Since middle school I have enjoyed the novels of H. G. Wells (1866-1946), often referred to as the father of science fiction. In addition to his classic novels The Time Machine (1895), The Invisible Man (1897), and The War of the Worlds (1898) he also wrote a gruesome dystopian novel called The Island of Dr. Moreau (1896). In this novel Edward Prendick is shipwrecked and ends up on an isolated tropical island on which the mad scientist Dr. Moreau uses vivisection to create humanlike hybrid beings, the Beast Folk. It is a bleak story in which Dr. Moreau dies and the Beast Folk revert to increasingly animal-like behavior. At the end of the story a lifeboat with two corpses washes ashore, and Prendick jettisons the corpses and rows out to sea where he is rescued by a ship three days later. Once home, he is no longer comfortable around other human beings and utterly disillusioned about the idea of human progress. And yet, when he looks to the heavens his hope is restored, “There is—though I do not how there is or why there is—a sense of infinite peace and protection in the glittering hosts of heaven. There it must be, I think, in the vast and eternal laws of matter, and not in the daily cares and sins and troubles of men, that whatever is more than animal within us must find its solace and its hope.” Similarly, the psalmist wrote, “The heavens are telling the glory of God; and the firmament proclaims his handiwork” (Psalm 19:1). And it is Jesus Christ, through whom the worlds were created (John 1:3) who gives us hope, “a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul” (Hebrews 6:19).

Love and Prayers,