He rescues and he saves; he performs signs and wonders in the heavens and on the earth. (Dan. 6:27)
I will show wonders in the heavens above and signs on the earth below.
He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth, and its people are like grasshoppers. He stretches out the heavens like a canopy, and spreads them out like a tent to live in.
I have no idea whether there is the slightest relevance in tomorrow’s eclipse in terms of “signs in the heavens” but we are certainly aware that many things are hotting up in various directions.*
Can you remember where you were in 1999?** Since we will have to wait until 2081 for the next total eclipse, I thought it would be good to mark this partial solar eclipse (at about 9.20 this Friday morning) with a track from Reawakenings CD4 that we entitled The Interplanetary Prophetic. This takes us into areas not usually covered in prayer, such as celebrating all our digital “friends” and praying for the Lord to raise up godly pioneers in the fields of scientific innovation and discovery. The Interplanetary Prophetic beautifully played for us by Corinne Frost.
I love the fact that the Scriptures speak of the heavens being stretched out in the present tense rather than just in the past. Isn’t it amazing that the Lord who formed the stars takes interest in everything that pertains to us? The universe is currently reckoned to be fourteen billion light years across – but if you stretched a rather long ruler right across it, and marked it off in one inch segments, and moved the balance of gravity by just one inch, then we on Earth would be unable to function.
That, along with a numerous other incredible indices, is just one of many examples of how unbelievably finely calibrated everything is in the universe He has so carefully designed. The more we study a subject – any subject –astrobiology, astrophysics, quantum mechanics, electromagnetism, chemistry, physics, biology or mathematics – the more we discover the absolute perfection of God as the Creator genius. He’s great at art too – just look at His use of colour!
Cutting edge telescopes today cost not a hundred pounds from the local store but millions. If humankind is prepared to invest such massive efforts in exploring space, should we not be concerned to develop our spiritual life to the full, and to explore the fulness of all God has revealed concerning the world to come?
And we can do this not least by inviting the Lord of the Universe into even the smallest issues in our lives: our humdrum ordinary thoughts and words – and my goodness, how humdrum most of them are – as well as the major crises.
We are familiar with the Lord’s question to Jeremiah, “Is anything too hard for me;” but I love how Amy Carmichael turns this around and asks in the Lord’s name, “Is anything too small for Me?” The answer is surely a resounding “No”. As anybody who has studied the wonders of the microscopic world knows, the Lord’s attention to detail is just amazing! The smallest matter is of great interest to Him.
We are also posting two powerful pieces set to harp music composed by Kim Robertson and played by Bill Klein.
We have also provided direct access to these refreshing pieces of music. You might like to read the verses below about the Lord stretching out the heavens as you listen – or He may lead you somewhere entirely different!
He stretches out the Heavens
The Lord wraps himself in light as with a garment; he stretches out the heavens like a tent (Ps. 104:2)
He alone stretches out the heavens (Job 9:8)
This is what God the Lord says – the Creator of the heavens, who stretches them out, who spreads out the earth with all that springs from it, who gives breath to its people, and life to those who walk on it: (Is. 42:5)
‘This is what the Lord says – your Redeemer, who formed you in the womb: I am the Lord, the Maker of all things, who stretches out the heavens, who spreads out the earth by myself. (Is. 44:24)
I, I am He who comforts you; who are you that you are afraid of man who dies, of the son of man who is made like grass, that you forget the Lord your Maker, who stretches out the heavens and who lays the foundations of the earth, that you live in constant terror every day because of the wrath of the oppressor, who is bent on destruction? (Is. 51:13)
The Lord, who stretches out the heavens, who lays the foundation of the earth, and who forms the human spirit within a person, declares: ‘I am going to make Jerusalem a cup that sends all the surrounding peoples reeling. Judah will be besieged as well as Jerusalem. On that day, when all the nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem an immovable rock for all the nations. All who try to move it will injure themselves.’ (Zech. 12:1-3)
* On the Israel front, at a secular level, there can hardly ever have been a time when so many western nations were deeply dismayed at the sight of Benjamin Netanyahu winning this week’s election. See for instance this article in the Guardian. For a (secular) undertanding of why and how Israel’s relationships with America reached such a low ebb, see this article we sent out last week, and continue to hold both nations in prayer.