by Grant Marshall
Imagine looking into space and seeing nothing but whiteness instead of darkness. When we look into the cosmos we see sparks of light that flicker in a sea of blackness. What would happen if all the stars and galactic systems just went out?
Jeremiah 32:17 “Oh, Lord GOD! You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too difficult for You!
There is a blessing that goes like this: 'Baruch Ata Adonai, Eloheinu Melech ha-Olam
Blessed are You oh Lord God, King of the universe.
These words are recited at the beginning of a number of Jewish blessings. When I ponder on these words, they declare something to me that is beyond my imagination.
The Hebrew word, ‘Eber’, means ‘beyond’, and it is used to describe something that is ‘across a region’, in particular space and time.
When I try to comprehend God and the infinitesimal aspect of His power and character, I more often than not end up giving up because my limited understanding and peanut-sized brain, tells me to. The Bible tells us that God is beyond physical understanding and can only be understood via spiritual means.
1:Corinthians 2:11For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spirit within them? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.
If we cannot understand the ordinary within the scriptures if we cannot understand the allusion, the parable, the hard sayings of Christ if we can’t understand the signs and the times, then how can we understand the things of heaven?
John 3:12 I have spoken to you of earthly things and you do not believe; how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things?
We are the most limited of all the species on earth, it would seem when understanding the things pertaining to it. Every animal adapts to its environment. It becomes synchronized to it and thus there is a subtle balance. When the landscape changes and is no longer profitable for them, they seek out another like it and move, waiting for the balance to be restored, and that is how it should be. But oh no! that’s not good enough for us humans. ‘We ain’t gonna move, we are going to change our environment to suit our needs, we are going to bring everything to us’.
We are struggling in unprecedented times of change, but let’s stop and think for a moment…what are natural changes and who is making the changes that are not?
Humanity has survived through catastrophic natural changes throughout our history, but population growth since the last great war has increased exponentially. Up till the mid-1930s, the population of the earth remained on a reasonable plateau. The whole of the population of mankind combined throughout the ages do not tally with the numbers currently inhabiting the earth.
Some scientists say that there is no need to worry, the world can cope, and nature is resilient. Other scientists conclude that there are too many people and too many mouths to feed and not enough resources. Ultimately, humanity is on a global impact course with the balance of nature. But guess what, we have the audacity to believe that we can fix it. We have devised strategies and technologies to change the weather, bring down the rain through cloud seeding, reflect the sun’s rays back into space, or redirect them to bring the sun to agriculturally struggling areas. Massive space reflectors like great golden umbrellas to deflect the sun’s rays are in the offer.
Food manufacturing processes are a horror to me and farming and agricultural practices which dispense chemical elixirs to animals and crops alike, are just diabolical. If only we knew half of it?
It makes me frustrated, angry and sad, all at the same time. I am angry because of the way we have become, and sad that we are destroying the earth our God gave us to look after. If it was not for His great redemptive plan, of providing us with something new to exist on, then we wouldn’t have a hope. We have to realize that God cannot occupy our world because it is corrupted, and holiness, cannot exist in the same space as the unholy. Somewhere within the hidden realm, shaded by a cosmic hand, His world exists and that world will one day be ours to share with Him again.
And so, because we cannot live with the changes we have made thus far, we continue onward adding layer upon layer to the inside of our box, making it increasingly smaller and less conducive to our perceived needs.
There is a paradox with knowledge; it may expand our intellect or minds, but what is really happening, I feel, is that we are becoming voluminous in ignorance and disregard.
The world was made for human beings; that’s why we can’t live anywhere else. Great plans are afoot to break beyond the parameters of our blue sphere, upwards and onward toward other strange new worlds. We won’t have a problem though because we can fix the problems and generate the environment whilst we live in little boxes, terraforming our new landscape. But what will become of us as intrepid cosmic pioneers? One thing for sure is that it's quite possible that we will create the mess all over again. But hey! That for the generations to come, a populous of strangers who by then, will be assimilated into hybrid cyborgs controlled by a super governing power, a single intelligence, a hyper Ai, centralized within a galactic alliance.
I began this ramble, with thoughts about the new or not-so-new James Web Space Telescope JWST, which basically supersedes the Hubble telescope HST. During its life, the HST which was launched in 1990, sent back to earth some extra-ordinarily beautiful deep space photographs.
The JWST was launched on Christmas day 2021 and on the 11th of July 2022, NASA released its first pictures. In brief, the JWTS looks into the very depths of deep space with the infra-red spectrum. The reflector on board is six times that of the HST. Its ability to capture images of objects billions of light years away brings the cosmos and its beginning even closer.
What I find staggering about all of this is not only how human beings have come together to create the technology but what the telescope is viewing; it simply does not, or might not exist at all. All we are seeing is the light signature or the residue of galactic explosions. However, that’s not to say that there are gazillions of planets, stars, and galaxies that are still in existence.
So this got me thinking. Brand new nebulae and some of the brightest objects ever seen in space have been discovered. The earliest telescopes would have blown off the socks of our ancient night sky viewers. However, they, the orators of that ancient blessing, which we read at the beginning, and among them, the psalmists of old, acknowledged YHVH God as the creator of the universe, and so, though I agree and declare it thus, I can’t help but think that however, we perceive God, our thoughts of Him are far and way, too limiting.
God has restricted our view within the material realm, and thus, that is how we still see things. We see things on molecular levels through materials of metal and glass. What we view is in our dimension, height, breadth, width, speed, and mass. Whether in the above, below, the inside, at whatever level, we ascribe a measure to it, depending on some formula or other.
The world of the ancients was far more limiting simply because of technology and the fact that dreams had not been dreamed yet. If I put wood in your hands, what you create will be limited to the materials available. But if I put metal and electricity in your hands, well. Consider this; there is something that can’t be touched or has substance but when manipulated in various ways through formula and equation, help to take man into his imagination. This substance has value and mysterious properties. It is probably the closest thing we have to a spiritual equivalent in the physical realm. When combined, we call them numbers. Just think of how we use them.
We understand now, that matter is made from light. It is the energy of the universe. But what about spiritual things? What can we make from that mysterious substance? Our ancestors, were by no means inferior. They knew things and saw things we may never know or see. They had an understanding of the realms that we only write stories about.
We consider ourselves far above those ancient sages and mystics. But science today is proving what they understood. So, our adaptive natures continue to make strides, leaving footprints in the soil — a wake of destruction. We call it progress.
If the world was flat and the landscape clear, we could see with not too much of a complex telescope, from one side of the earth to the other. Pretty impressive, hey!
God beyond the Galaxies.
The God of creation is bigger than creation itself. He is bigger than the systems and greater than anything we can hope for or imagine. He created a world for us so that we could coexist with all He created.
I believe in the creation story, but I don’t believe in it the way we have come to understand it. The Genesis story is a synopsis of events that have been made limited by a very simple time aspect. It is far more complex than that. Why? Because the thoughts of God and the power of God cannot be limited to a few paragraphs of text or to our thoughts. If we confine creation to this understanding and do not move on from this simple framework, then yes, we are very much like our early ancestors who saw the stars as lights and not something nuclear hot.
I can’t understand how someone looking at the photographs from the most powerful space telescope ever created, that sees things that no longer exist, believe that the cosmos was made by some meta-physical accident.
Science has worked out that there is more dark matter than light matter. That’s really not hard to understand. Dark Space exists between matter, whether on an atomic or molecular level, or between stars and planets. There are even substances that cannot reflect light, and thus in the physical world it is invisible, but it still has mass.
I believe that if everything, even within our known cosmic landscape were to be drawn back together again, the universe as we know it, will be white — the purest, most powerful light, beyond our imagination.
Can you see a universe that exists not in the darkness of space but in the brightness of some as yet unknown substance?
The scriptures refer to a realm beyond ours, where everything is light and exists in the light. This bright-verse is where the origin of all things began.
Christian songwriters of today, reflect:
God of wonders beyond our galaxy You are Holy Holy The universe declares your majesty You are Holy Holy
You are beautiful beyond description
Too marvellous for words.
Can you explain those lyrics and whom we ascribe them to?
These simple words, applied to modern musical melodies, themselves made up of numbers and frequencies, are arranged so that we can hear them. They are not new, so I will refrain of attaching any ownership to them. The psalmists of old also employed them to describe God, but not one of them is sufficient to describe His magnitude. Selah