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Devotion - January 24, 2013
The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
I still remember that night some fifty years ago. Our family was vacationing on a lake in northern Wisconsin. It was late and the air was cool and crisp as I walked to the end of the dock. There was no cloud or moon in the sky. As I looked up I was absolutely awestruck by the sight of the nighttime sky. Growing up in the city, I had seen stars, but not like this. The sheer brilliance and volume of the stars left me breathless. It was one of those “WOW!” moments. I probably didn’t know Psalm 19:1 at that time, but I was aware that the Lord of heaven and earth was revealing his glory and majesty to me that evening.
As I grew older and learned more about the stars, I was amazed at how Moses, David and Jesus saw the very same constellations that people see today. There is order, even in outer space. As I grew in my knowledge of God’s Word, I came to understand even more what Abraham must have seen and how he must have felt when the Lord “took him outside and said, ‘Look up at the heavens and count the stars—if indeed you can count them.’ Then he said to him, ‘So shall your offspring be’” (Genesis 15:5). As NASA began to publish their color pictures from outer space, I was amazed again at the striking beauty and color of the various galaxies, nebulas, and the like. Each time I could not help but agree that the heavens do declare the glory of God; the skies most certainly proclaim the work of his hands. Only a wise, powerful and loving God could create such awesome beauty and majesty for us to enjoy.
But there are other places where, with the eyes of faith, we can see the greater glory of God and the more awesome work of his hands. We see that greater glory when the creator of the heavenly bodies lowers himself to become human flesh and blood. He comes into this world so humbly, wrapped in strips of cloth and laid in a feeding box for cattle, all so he could be our Savior. We see the greater work of his hands as he stretches his arms out on a cross and allows nails to be hammered into those hands, all in order to rescue us sinners. We see a sight more stunning then far away nebulas when the glorified Jesus steps forth from the grave having conquered death itself. Then he ascends into heaven to prepare a place for you and me, a place that is more than we can even imagine. WOW!
Years ago I came across this quote from a well known astronomer: “For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountains of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak; as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries.” (Readers Digest, July 1980, “Have Astronomers Found God?”)
The heavens surely declare the glory of our awesome and powerful God. The Bible declares the greater glory of our God who saved us by his awesome love and compassion in the person of Jesus Christ. Be wowed by both!
Dear Lord, help me always to stand in awe of your glorious power and love. Amen.
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