In the Bible, Jesus said there will be signs in the sun, and in the moon and stars just prior to His return. John 4:48, “Unless you people see signs and wonders,” Jesus told him, “you will never believe.” At the beginning of the month of repentance on the first of Elu. God could be giving us a warning that we need to repent or judgment will be coming on the United States. Brightest stars and planets visible during the eclipse were Sirus, yellow Arcturus and Capella. The planets were Venus, Jupiter, Mars and Mercury.
On Monday, Aug. 21, the Great American Eclipse Day, people from all over the world took it all in. People witnessed the rare and wonderful glory of a total eclipse. The total solar eclipse captured the attention of the world and especially those in North America. The total solar eclipse crossed the United States from Oregon to South Carolina creating a 70 mile shadow. Many people regard a total eclipse as one of the most spectacular events in nature. The total eclipse seems to have had the ability to re-awaken a childlike sense of wonder. We encounter a world we did not create. It is a natural human reaction to respond with wonder to events that we did not cause and that we do not control.
In 376 B.C., Athenian philosopher Anaxagoras became the first person to explain why eclipses happen. His teaching stated that the sun and moon were not gods, and he was hounded out of Athens! The moon is 400 times smaller than the sun, and almost 400 times closer to earth. A solar eclipse happens when the moon blocks the sun’s light from some area on earth. The appearance of the sun was blocked out by the moon. The sun has a common name, Sol. The name originates from the ancient Roman’s god the Sun, Sol. This is where we get the term “solar system,” which literally means system of the sun. One million earths could fit inside the sun. As the sun is larger than the moon, the sun represents the nations of the world and the moon represents the nations of Israel, as their calendar months are based on the cycle of the moon while the nations of the world follow the sun for their calendar. When there is a total solar eclipse, it is a warning to a specific nation or nations depending on its path. God puts His works on display. It is nothing but the Glory of God on display.
Psalm 19:1 states, “The heavens declare the glory of God and the sky above proclaims His handiwork.” All of this natural beauty is part of the elegant celestial dance which the Lord orchestrates showing forth His power and inspiring humanity with timeless beauty of nature (Luke 21: 25-28). The Holy Spirit also uses eclipses in prophecy. The Prophet Joel says, “The sun shall be turned to darkness, and the moon to blood, before the great and awesome day of the Lord comes” (Joel 2:31). Yes, indeed, on Monday, August 21, a day in history (His Story), people wondered in awe at the majesty of this celestial event. They pondered the great workmanship the Lord has set in the heavens as some may have reflected on the sufferings and death of Jesus on the cross for our sins.
If God so carefully created the heavens and provides us with the ability to observe them, should we not be careful to give Him all the “honor” that is due His name? David asked the question, “Why did God display the heavens?” God made them to glorify His name. Millions of Americans witnessed a perfect solar eclipse. We can rejoice that God created humans beings at the one time and the one place where we could enjoy and benefit from experiencing a perfect solar eclipse. A perfect solar eclipse provides confirmation of Albert Einstein’s theory of general relativity, which provided the final scientific evidence that a God was necessary to explain the existence of the universe, a Creator beyond space and time. The universe now clearly testifies of the supernatural, super intelligent handiwork of the God of the Bible.
We can rejoice that in Christ we no longer have to fear as the pagans did that the eclipse would signal the end of the world. We know that the loss of the sun is temporary and only a shadow of the great and last day. Then the sun will be extinguished forever and the true Son will come in all His glory to take His elect to a new heaven and earth where His Light will never fail.
From a biblical point of view, a solar eclipse is meant as a sign from God. When there is a total solar eclipse, it is a warning that we need to repent or judgment will be to a specific nation or nations depending on its path. Could God be giving us a warning that we need to repent or judgment will be coming to the United States?
As I listened to people on television on Monday, Aug. 21, try to describe their experience, many mentioned it was awesome, indescribable, a day of wonder, amazement and a time of tranquility. I believe it taught a lesson on patience as people drove to the locations to view God’s handiwork. People had waited for over a year as they had already booked flights and hotel rooms for this one day.
They wanted to be in the right place so that they could have a good view of the eclipse. On this one day, people were in harmony with one another. They forgot about racism, and tearing down statues and looked up as they focused on seeing the “Glory” of God. I thought of Psalm 46:1, “Be still and know that I am God.” By sitting still for 10 minutes and resting our minds we will see that every day is ripe with beautiful moments to blossom and savor. What do you notice that you may have too quickly dismissed or not recognized at all? The world asks us to be busy. God asks us to be still so that we can receive love, peace and guidance.
“Looking to Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith” (Hebrews 12:2). Looking unto Jesus describes faith itself. Be still. Those involved in war should stop fighting, and be still. The word still is a translation of the Hebrew word rapa, meaning “to slacken, let down or cease.” Only after the fighting has stopped can the warriors acknowledge the command to “be still” as “to be quiet in God’s presence.” Quietness is helpful, but the phrase means to stop frantic activity to let down, and to be still. For God’s people being “still” would involve looking to the Lord for their help. For God’s enemies being “still” would mean ceasing to fight a battle they cannot win. Acknowledging God implies that we can trust Him and surrender to His plan because we understand who He is.
When we are still and surrendered to God, we find peace. Acknowledging that He is God and that He is exalted in the earth. Be still and know that He is God. We are finite and God is infinite. God can do what we are unable to do. This spiritual calm that God commands, does not come from a lack of troubles. It derives from a steady deep refection on the ways God has intervened in History on behalf of His people (Romans 15:4). Don’t flinch in faith in God. Stand still — not because of a self-made confidence, not because you are the most composed person in the face of disaster, not because you’ve seen it all. Be still because of what you know about God.
No matter how difficult the circumstances, we need to understand that God is always in control. We can look to Him in confidence. We can look up in confidence. We can be confident in God’s place. Confident in God’s power and confident in God’s plan. Are we in His place? Are we trusting His power? Are we living in accordance with His plan? Allow God to have His way in our hearts and lives. There is a song entitled “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus.” The chorus is,“Turn your eyes upon Jesus. Look full in His wonderful face. And the things of earth will grow strangely dim, In the light of His glory and grace.” Keep looking up!
Milley Brewington is a guest columnist for The Sampson Independent.