Swimming In The Psalms 2: The Heavens Declare (19:1-6)…
For the director of music. A psalm of David.
1 The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
2 Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge.
3 They have no speech, they use no words; no sound is heard from them.
4 Yet their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world.
In the heavens God has pitched a tent for the sun.
5It is like a bridegroom coming out of his chamber,
like a champion rejoicing to run his course.
6 It rises at one end of the heavens and makes its circuit to the other;
nothing is deprived of its warmth.
Why focus on verses 1—6?
- We must step back & see the big picture. Easy to get wrapped up in life’s details (as important as they are), easy to focus on leaf&forget about the tree/the forest. Important for a family, team or organization: why are we here, what is our purpose, what is the bigger goal? This helps us not give up/quiet in the details of the goal.E.g. Hebrews 12: “fix our eyes on Jesus…so we will not grow weary & give up.
See the big overall painting so we dont quit in the small brushstroke of our life.
- We must see God as big, glorious, high & lifted up, above us, awesome, if we are to see & enjoy Him as down here, with us. You’d be amazed at a celebrity wanting to hang out with you because you first realize the person is a celebrity—their status makes it a big deal that they’d hang out with you.Same with the LORD: we must learn to see Him as the only true Celebrity in the universe (Psalm 136:4—“to him who alone does great wonders”), we must learn to refresh our minds with how He describes Himself & what He has done.To only see Him as with us will cause us to lose the wonder/awe of Him; we will only treat Him as friend, not as Master/LORD. We’ll slide into seeing Him as a peer/colleague/equal—worship will suffer, though we may interact w/Him a lot. You may love hanging out w/your best friend, but you don’t (shouldn’t) worship him/her.
To only see God as big/above/transcendent will cause us to not enjoy that He is Immanuel, God with us. We’ll treat Him like the Hebrews did on Mt. Sinai: aware of His awesomeness, but terrified & not wanting Him to come near. Both extremes are unhealthy.
- We must learn to trust both that the LORD is willing AND able to carry us, that His heart is tender AND that His biceps are strong (both are important for our daily lives). On earth we see one or the other: “good intentions” with no power to complete the intentions, or much power/force but evil intentions. We must see that the LORD is both ultimately powerful (able) & ultimately compassionate (willing) to save & transform & forgive sinners like us.
- We sinful humans make ourselves too big & the LORD too small. As God brings people to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ & then onward toward maturity, He’s in the continual process of reversing this in our hearts: shrinking/lowering our view of ourselves & enlarging/ raising our view of God.Both are necessary—the Bible calls this humbling ourselves & exalting the LORD—our sin does the opposite, & much of our problems come from having these two aspects out of line—seeing God as too small & ourselves as too large (getting “too big for our britches [pants] as my Dad used to say!).
So let’s look at some evidence of the bigness of God in nature!
- “There are probably more stars in the universe than grains of sand on earth.
- The sun makes up 99.86% of the mass of our solar system—
that means that 1.3 million earths can fit inside the sun.
- The universe is so large that some of the stars we see at night have already died out—the star no longer exists, but it is so far away from earth that its light is still traveling here.
- If you unraveled all of the DNA in your body, it would span 34 billion miles, reaching to Pluto and back…six times” (www.businessinsider.com/14-facts-about-the-universe-2016-8).
- Voyager 2 is traveling at nearly 40,000 miles per hour, and it will still take it nearly 300,000 years to pass Sirious, the brightest start in our galaxy. (source)
- Milky Way Galaxy: app. 125,000 light years across. Solar system travels at 515,000 mph, would still take 230 million years to go around the entire galaxy. That’s just our galaxy, might be 100 billion galaxies. Universe is app. 91 billion light years across in diameter. (source)
- Milky Way Galaxy is rotating at 135 miles per second&hurling thru the cosmos at 195 miles per second. Add those figures together, and we’re racing through space at around 330 miles per second. So in one minute’s time, you’ve traveled almost…12,000 miles. (source)
- Great Red Spot storm on Jupiter: size of 1.3 earths, winds 250 mph, lasting as long as 350 years, over 10,000 miles across (compare to the devastating hurricane Katrina: 400 miles across, 127 mph winds, lasted 8 days). (source)
- Wind speed on Neptune: 1,300 miles per hour, almost twice the speed of sound (source) (remember that the wind & waves obey Jesus!).
- Twinkling in the sky is a diamond star of 10 billion trillion trillion carats
(compare to the largest diamond on Earth, the 546-carat Golden Jubilee).
The cosmic diamond is a chunk of crystallised carbon, 2,400 miles across (distance from maine to new mexico), some 50 light-years from the Earth in the constellation Centaurus. Astronomers call the star “Lucy” after the Beatles song, Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds. “You would need a jeweler’s loupe the size of the Sun to grade this diamond.” (source)
- Earth is just the right distance from sun, just the right size, just the right tilt on axis, just the right mix of atmospheric gases, just the right gravitational pull to release just the right amount of gases into space and keep just the right amount of gases on earth for life to survive & thrive. Just the right amount over & over again…you’d think Someone designed all of this! 🙂
Isaiah 40:14-15: Whom did the Lord consult to enlighten him,
and who taught him the right way?
Who was it that taught him knowledge,
or showed him the path of understanding?
15 Surely the nations are like a drop in a bucket;
they are regarded as dust on the scales;
he weighs the islands as though they were fine dust.
Isaiah 40:25-26: “To whom will you compare me?
Or who is my equal?” says the Holy One.
26 Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these?
He who brings out the starry host one by one
and calls forth each of them by name.
Because of his great power and mighty strength,
not one of them is missing.
Job 38:31-33: “Can you bind the chains of the Pleiades?
Can you loosen Orion’s belt?
32 Can you bring forth the constellations in their seasons
or lead out the Bear [Leo] with its cubs?
33 Do you know the laws of the heavens?
Can you set up God’s dominion over the earth?
2 Chronicles 6:18: “But will God really dwell on earth with humans?
The heavens, even the highest heavens, cannot contain you.
How much less this temple I have built!
Psalm 139:7-10: Where can I go from your Spirit?
Where can I flee from your presence?
8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea,
10 even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.
Psalm 136:1, 5-9: Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good.
His love endures forever…
5 who by his understanding made the heavens, His love endures forever.
6 who spread out the earth upon the waters, His love endures forever.
7 Who made the great lights—His love endures forever.
8 the sun to govern the day, His love endures forever.
9 the moon and stars to govern the night; His love endures forever.
[My dear friends, God designed the universe—
it isn’t an accident/random
any more than the light in your room accidentally shines there,
randomly connected to the right wires/electricity source
from a power plant miles away.
Design is proof of a Designer!]
Ephesians 4:10: He who descended [the Lord Jesus]
is the very one who ascended higher than all the heavens,
in order to fill the whole universe…
Hebrews 1:3: The Son [Jesus Christ] is the radiance of God’s glory
and the exact representation of his being,
sustaining all things by his powerful word…
Please be encouraged, my dear friends,
when the LORD feels far & you are suffering:
Look at His fingerprints all around &
be encouraged that He HAS been here & IS still here with us!
- As kids, why were we amazed at Santa Claus on Christmas morning? We never saw him, but we saw what he did the night before, that he “was” there—half-eaten cookies, empty glass of milk, presents.
- Ask the LORD to help you trust Him & follow Him each day, to see & be encouraged by His fingerprints & evidence of His presence all around us!
He knows every sparrow that falls to the ground & knows the number of hairs on your head—you are worth more than MANY sparrows!
He conquered the biggest storm of all—sin & death itself—& will carry all of His people thru our individual storms.
He knows the stars by name & He knows your name & has revealed His name to you thru His Son that you may know Him, enjoy Him, be set free by Him, & rest in Him forever.
My dear friends, those who don’t believe in God don’t need more evidence, they need eyes to see all the evidence. A blind person doesn’t need more/brighter colors but new eyes! Many saw Jesus do miracles but didn’t have faith in Him. But really, it’s not even an eye issue (seeing), it’s a heart issue (surrendering/repenting).
Romans 1:18-23: 18 The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness& wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, 19since what may be known about God is plain to them, b/c God has made it plain to them. 20For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.
For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile&their foolish hearts were darkened.22Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.
Receive the Lord Jesus as your Savior by faith, as a gift,
surrender to Him to pay for your sinfulness thru His suffering on the cross,
admit your bankruptcy & receive by faith the riches of His mercy thru the cross, surrender control of your life (u don’t have control anyway & it’s not your life)
to Him Who is the way, the truth & the life.
He is willing&able to forgive any sinner, even sinners like you and me…
Space.com: “The universe is overwhelmingly made up of things that cannot be seen. In fact, the stars, planets and galaxies that can be detected make up only 4% of the universe, according to astronomers.
The other 96% is made up of substances that cannot be seen or easily comprehended. These elusive substances, called dark energy and dark matter, have not been detected, but astronomers base their existence on the gravitational influence that both exert on normal matter, the parts of the universe that can be seen.”
Hebrews 11:3: By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command,
so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.
Colossians 1:15-17: 15The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.16For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created thru him and for him.17He is before all things, in him all things hold together.
Bank slogan: “big enough to serve you, small enough to know you.”
The LORD: Big enough to create & sustain the universe, big enough to save you,
Compassionate enough to know you & care about/be involved in every detail of your life.
He is both willing AND able, my dear friends,
to forgive and save and adopt and transform sinners like you and me…
The heavens truly declare the glory of God!!!