My memory verse this week:
Of old you laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands.
They will perish, you will remain;
They will all wear out like a garment.
You will change them like a robe, and they will pass away
But you are the same, and your years have no end.
– Psalm 102:25-27
I was talking to my uncle last week. He is educated in particle physics, subatomic particles and processes, the cosmos, etc. I know a little bit (but only a little bit) about that stuff as well. Frankly, it’s mind-blowing. At that level, we’re talking about things that exist in dimensions we can’t comprehend. For instance, did you know that if you take two subatomic particles and put a spin on one so that it affects the other (i.e., gets it spinning too), and then move them a few light years away from each other and change the spin on the first one, the second one will also change its spin?
I’m still trying to figure out how you get something that small spinning in the first place, and how you can tell which way it’s spinning, and if maybe the physicists are just making this stuff up to have a little fun with us.
But, all kidding aside, it’s natural to sink down in wonder as we learn more and more about the cosmos. I think that many of those who don’t believe in God find the cosmos, the vast distances, the incomprehensible age, and the whole jaw-dropping complexity and marvel of quantum physics, quarks, black holes, galaxies, somehow to be an assurance that God can’t exist. It’s all just too big. We’re too small.
I, however, am with the Psalmist. To a degree that the Psalmist probably couldn’t comprehend, and I certainly can’t either, our God is awesome. We have a God who is so big, so skilled, and so creative; the heavens really do declare his glory and show forth his handiwork. If our God is true – this great Craftsman, Designer, Programmer, Biologist, Physicist, Chemist that we worship – then he is beyond our comprehension. And yet he stoops down to comprehend, or, as the Bible would put it, know us, and allow us to start to know him.
In the Superman comic book, it’s interesting to see how the character of Superman evolved. Originally, when the character was first created, he could run really fast. If memory serves, that’s kind of how he flew; he just launched himself. He was impervious to bullets, and was really strong. But his powers grew with the telling, and it wasn’t long before he was portrayed flying and surviving in the vacuum of space, surviving nuclear blasts, and moving whole worlds.
Not so with the Lord. The very first line of Scripture establishes his power: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth”. His tale doesn’t grow in the telling, both because it’s not a tale at all, but the truth, and because it’s already beyond our comprehension. He created all this vast complexity and beauty we see, and he will outlast his creation.
And he knows me, and lets himself be known. Praise be to God.