By: Dr. Shadee Elmasry
It is said that when Nimrod made the fire to kill Prophet Ibrahim, a frog filled its mouth with water and leaped over to spit on the fire and put it out. Allah said what are you doing oh frog. The frog replied, they made a fire for your prophet and I’m pouring water on it. “And do you think that small amount of water will do anything?” Allah asked. The frog said, “it’s what I can do and the result is in Your hands.” Thereafter, Allah commanded all believing nations to respect the frog. (A short version of this can be found in the Musannaf of Abd al-Razzaq from Aisha.)
Bees and ants are also very noble creations who have Suras named after them in the Quran. They should only be killed if their nuisance is apparent such as an invasion of your kitchen.
As for the frog, it is also discouraged (not haram) to kill them, and the killing mentioned in Ibn Abi Zayd is killing for no serious reason. But eating them is nonetheless permissible even if people killed them. (In the story above, the lizard was blowing on the fire to make it bigger.)
You may be thinking, “what kind of tree-hugging is this? Honoring frogs, bees, and ants? These are such minor things.” The error in this line of thinking is that there exists big and small for Allah. There is nothing “big” or “small” in relation to the creator. His creation of the entire universe takes no more effort from Him than the creation of an ant. And that amount of effort is zero.
The universe is vastly more intricate and complex than an ant. But does one think Allah had to think and come up with the laws of gravity etc? He did not. You’ll note that “thinking” is not one of His attributes. This is because thinking is actually a branch of ignorance and inability. Only one who doesn’t know has to think. But the All-Knowing already knows.
All the knowledge and mathematical perfection of the universe and its composition, if weighed against Allah’s knowledge is like a bird taking a sip from the ocean. Even further: the droplets that fall off its beak and back into the ocean; that’s our knowledge in comparison to the ocean of Divine knowledge.
This is because any number compared to infinity is essentially nothing.