PSALM 19: Heavens & Handiwork

The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. Day to day pours out speech, and night to night reveals knowledge. There is no speech, nor are there words, whose voice is not heard. Their voice goes out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them he has set a tent for the sun, which comes out like a bridegroom leaving his chamber, and, like a strong man, runs its course with joy. Its rising is from the end of the heavens, and its circuit to the end of them, and there is nothing hidden from its heat.

                                                        Psalm 19:1-6

 

We should really do more to marvel at the world around us. I certainly wouldn’t have to do much convincing to convince you that the universe we exist in is incredible. If you’ve ever sat below a starry night in the countryside, beheld the sight of the sun rising over the Grand Canyon, or seen the Great Geysir of Iceland cannon boiling water 70m into the sky, you’ll know the feeling of being captivated by the beauty, intricacy and power of creation. 

Cultures and peoples throughout history have given explanation to the majesty of creation in nearly innumerable supply. In Did the Greeks Believe Their Myths, Veyne helps modern readers to navigate the explanatory power of Greek mythology in constituting the substance of Greek thought and belief. According to the Greeks, the creation of the universe began with Erebus emerging from the void of chaos and through his endeavors and escapades, the world as we see it began to unfold. Our Post-Enlightenment way of thinking lends itself to a strong emphasis on finding our explanation of the universe in science. Regardless of our method, humans universally tend towards seeking explanations that help us make sense of the world around us whether in the physical dimension or beyond. 

The Apostle Paul appeals to this fundamental reality on a couple of key occasions:

For since the creation of the world his invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse.
                    Romans 1:20 

You should turn from these vain things to the living God, who made the heaven, the earth, the sea, and all things that are in them, who in bygone generations allowed all nations to walk in their own ways. Nevertheless he did not leave himself without witness, in that he did good, gave us rain from heaven and fruitful seasons, filling our hearts with food and gladness.
                  Acts 14:15-17

From these passages, Paul establishes the foundational idea that Creation points us to the Creator. In fact, to reject the idea of a Creator after beholding Creation is to subvert the very sense God has created in us to desire, seek and know Him. Quite simply, we can’t behold Creation without some sense that there must be some greater explanation for it all. However, this isn’t just a general idea, but a specific one. Creation is meant to point us uniquely to the Creator. In Creation, we are confronted beautifully and unavoidably with the Creator

This, however, should not lead us to simply conclude that there must be a creator behind all of Creation. As Psalm 19 points out, the heavens are declaring something – that is, the glory of God. As we behold Creation, we do not merely give mental assent to the idea of creationism. Instead, as we behold Creation,we are driven to worship the Creator. Behind the splendor, beauty, complexity, unknowability, power and majesty of Creation is a Creator who is infinitely more so. Therefore, our right response to every expression of glory, honor and power in Creation is to seek, know and worship the Creator. We are, quite literally, beholden to a Creation that declares the excellencies of our Father in Heaven. As we live within the rhythms of this Creation, let us be constantly stirred to steward this grand display of His majesty well by letting our hearts be inclined to worship the One behind it all. 

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