We cannot help but notice that the seasons are changing; the nights are getting longer and darker and the weather is getting colder. It is a major indicator that summer is long gone and winter is fast approaching. But, with winter comes the opportunity of the dark winter skies, perfect for revealing the stars in all their glory.
In our modern towns & cities it can be difficult to get a true glimpse of the glory of the stars. Unless you are particularly lucky the glow of the orange street lights and the continual haze of smog restrict our viewing of the night sky to just one or two bright stars, and of course the moon. But if you ever head out of town and into the countryside, then take a minute or two and look to the skies. For only then can you get a true sense of the richness of the stars, pinpoint bright against an inky black night sky. And if you are truly lucky, then the vast ribbon of the milky way can be seen sprawling across the dark sky. When we see these awe inspiring wonders we can begin to appreciate the words of King David. It is a major indicator that summer is long gone and winter is approaching fast. But with winter comes the opportunity of the dark winter skies, perfect for revealing the stars in all their glory.
The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows his handiwork.
In our modern age, faith in the knowledge and ability of man has overtaken faith in the God of the Bible as the religion of the masses. Few these days would understand or seek out the truth of God as revealed to man in the Bible, whereas every day the works of man’s hand, his thoughts and his ideas are continually held up as examples of how great we are. Yet, although we can understand more about our planet and its environment, the more we look into things the more we find we
In all these examples we evidence faith – that the car will work, that the computer will do what we want it to, the washing machine will clean our clothes. And yet how many times do these things break down? How many times do things we make fail to work as expected? Even scientists can get it wrong – the Large Hadron Collider at the forefront of modern particle physics embarrassingly broke down after it was switched on!
With God, the stars in the night sky are evidence that there is a God and that he is in control. God’s creation does not break down – gravity continues to work every day as it has since creation (just think what would happen if it did not!). The stars we see in our winter night sky are the same stars that Abraham looked at all those years ago when God spoke to him:
Then God brought Abram outside and said,”Look now towards the heaven and count the stars if you are able to number them… so shall your descendants be.”
Abram had faith in God and wholeheartedly believed what God had told him. And because of this, God blessed him and made him the father of God’s people the Jews (and many of the Arab nations too!). In a similar way the stars we see in our night skies today are permanent reminders that God’s plan for his people is still being carried out.
The faith Abram showed in his God was not based on understanding or knowledge of exact details. Indeed the Bible tells us that Abraham died without receiving the promise. Instead, through faith Abraham was able to see these promises being fulfilled in the future. God’s plan for mankind is wholly entwined with these promises to Abraham, and just like Abraham, through faith we still await their fulfilment.
So, this autumn as we look up to the heavens and marvel at the beauty and majesty of the stars in the night sky we can be reassured that there is a God, that he is in control, and that his plan for mankind is still being worked out – just as it was in the day of Abram.