What Are ‘the Heavens’?

How Many Galaxies Can You Count in This Picture? - The Atlantic

(Those are galaxies, folks–each one consisting of countless stars.)

The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament showeth His handiwork. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night showeth knowledge. (Psalm 19: 1-2)

Is the universe just a bunch of nothing? Atoms bumping into other atoms to form molecules, molecules bumping into molecules, no rhyme nor reason to any of it, no active creation involved… “Life,” as we call it, being an illusion.

We teach that in our schools every day. We preach it on TV. We call it Science.

But what if it’s wrong?

God is a Person, and He made us in His image. That’s why we are persons, too. But He also made everything else. Everything in the universe, all the work of His hands.

What if it’s not random? What if the presumed emptiness of “space” only looks that way to us because of our many limitations–and our Science-based presuppositions? What if what we think we “see” is only there because we don’t know how to see? Any stage magician can demonstrate that.

When we view “space” through our newest telescopes, it doesn’t look empty at all. In fact, it looks kind of crowded. The vast emptiness of interstellar space only seems like vast emptiness because we’re so small.

Surely God had a purpose for creating all of it. We don’t know what His purpose was in sowing the heavens with stars, planets, and galaxies. He hasn’t told us. We can never see it as He sees it.

Shouldn’t we stand in awe, reflecting on the Person whose work this is?

And He sent His Son… to us. Here on earth, to us. To win salvation and eternal life–for us.

Christ and all those galaxies go together.

Someday we’ll know how. When we’re wiser.

9 comments on “What Are ‘the Heavens’?

  1. The best definition I ever heard for “heavens”, was not of this earth. There are heavens, in the sense of where God lives, heavens in the sense of the celestial heavens, and heavens is sometimes used to describe the skies, where birds, airplanes and kites can go, but humans can’t get there by flapping their arms.

    There are religious points of view which would hold that man’s fate would be to populate the Universe, inhabiting planets that are, as of yet, devoid of life. I have no way of knowing, but there is a logic to it, because it would seem to be there for some purpose, and images such as the Hubble Deep Field and some more recent photos, reveal that the areas perceived as being empty, hold vast numbers of galaxies. There must be some purpose to these, but nothing has been revealed, that I am aware of. Jesus did allude to having more to tell us, but that we were not able to bear it, at this time.

    One thing we know, however, is that God has instructed man to fill the earth, and this was reiterated to Noah, after the Flood. Beyond that, when humans defied that, at Babel, God took action to make it happen. Obviously, having humans spread out on the earth if important to God’s purposes. Even if we do not know what these purposes might be.

    Over the last few years, I have become increasingly aware of just how unique and valuable animals are. Animals have their own unique personalities, and while they are not made in God’s image, they obviously have real value. Animals learn over their lifetimes, and just like humans, and can become quite clever over time. Some Christian faiths believe that animals did not die before mankind’s fall, the thinking being that if God called his works “good”, that wouldn’t have have been the case if animals suffered disease, and death. I don’t claim to have the ultimate evidence as to whether this viewpoint is correct or not, but present it as food for thought.

    One thing of which I am certain, is that all of God’s works are good, and that we can count on this as being evident, when God restores all things. I was raised in an environment of preterism and slowly came to the conclusion that we are still awaiting the fulfillment of many prophetic promises, and we will see much more, when Christ returns.

    The Bible tells us that eye has not seen, and ear has not heard what God has in store for those who love Him. Whatever God has in store, apparently goes beyond our estimation.

    1. For certain. Outside the material realm is beyond our ability to understand. Some surmise that spirit creatures are pure energy, but without matter involved. That is, of course, impossible in our realm, but perhaps possible outside of our realm. We have no way of knowing.

      However, I must now go and try to contain the electrical energy in my lawn tractor, because it is trying to escape the physical boundaries of the wires, so I must test, probe, and insulate. 🙂

  2. I once read a comparison of our place in the universe as an infant lying in his cradle while all around him his parents have filled the house with things meant especially for him — not just toys but furniture, food, art, music, fixtures and appliances, etc. — as well as many other things that doesn’t yet know about or will know the uses of for a long time. And then there are all the things outside the house: neighbors, parks, stores and businesses, other cities and countries that he may or may not ever visit or even know about but that supply things he uses every day….. The baby in his cradle has no idea what these things are and for years won’t even know of their existence, but they’re all there waiting for him. We are that baby in the cradle, and God has created wonders for us to learn about, to see and enjoy even if we don’t know what they’re for, and finally to go beyond into the world beyond them into the Presence of God Himself.

    I wish I could remember where I read that and who said it. Was it you, Lee?

    1. True but a bit misleading, because the solids are bound tightly by the electromagnetic force, so we couldn’t occupy that space.

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