by Pat Franklin
The Bible says many times in many places that the Lord stretches out the heavens, and now we know the exact rate at which he is stretching out the moon from earth.
A BBC program about the moon revealed that when the Apollo astronauts were there in 1969, they left some reflective panels on the surface. Ever since, American scientists have been aiming lasers at the panels. Trillions of photons (particles of light) are accurately aimed, and back comes one or two photons, enough to measure the precise distance of the moon from the earth.
So they now know that the moon is moving 3.7 centimeters, about 1 1/2 inches, away from us every year. Do they give God the glory for telling us this in the Bible? I hope some of them do; I certainly do and that is why I am putting this little item on our web site.
Psalm 104 says: 'Bless the Lord, O my soul! O Lord my God, You are very great; You are clothed with honor and majesty, Who cover Yourself with light as with a garment, Who stretch out the heavens like a curtain.'
Isaiah 40:22 says: 'It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers, Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, and spreads them out like a tent to dwell in...'
The stretching process is still going on in our expanding universe!
And how it should make us search the scriptures for more information. One sobering fact is that the Lord is going to one day roll the universe up like a scroll.
Isaiah 34:4 says: 'All the host of heaven shall be dissolved, and the heavens shall be rolled up like a scroll; all their host shall fall down, as the leaf falls from the vine, and as the fruit falling from a fig tree.'
The Book of Revelation chapter 6:12-14 (the sixth seal judgement): 'I (the apostle John) looked when He opened the sixth seal, and behold, there was a great earthquake, and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became like blood. And the stars of heaven fell to the earth, as a fig tree drops the late figs when it is shaken by a mighty wind. Then the sky receded as a scroll when it is rolled up, and every mountain and island was moved out of its place.'
The Lord Jesus told us the time frame for this in Matthew 24:29-31: 'Immediately after the tribulation (the seven year Great Tribulation) of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavensw will be shaken. Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great authority. And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.'
How wonderful that the Lord has given us so much information about these marvels, and especially that He is going to save us out of that terrible time that is coming on the earth.
If all this sounds like nonsense to you, consider the moon, its relentless moving away from earth, and the solid fact of that being written in the scriptues thousands of years before we could possibly take precise measurements. Just coincidence? Never. The Bible is God's holy word. It is true in every aspect, and its sombre prophecies of the future are also true.
My only problem with all this is why God would ever bother to tell us anything at all! Even there He tells us why: 'God so LOVED the world...(John 3:16). He loves us, folks! He doesn't want us to go through that terrible time that is coming. The rest of that scripture: 'God so loved the world that He sent His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him (Jesus Christ) will not perish, but have eternal life.'
There we have it...we only have to believe in Jesus to gain eternal life. This is not just a nod of the head, a shrug of the shoulders, an 'OK, I'll say I believe'...and then carry on with your same old life. Real belief is a total transformation, a heart change, a turning around. It is nothing short of a new birth, a new person, a new creation who is from that moment alive to God.
I know because it happened to me in 1981 after a sequence of events led me to start reading the New Testament. By the time I had read the gospels of Matthew and Mark, and got to the middle of Luke, I knew without any doubt that the Bible was God's book, and every word was true; that Jesus was God and was wonderful beyond description; and that I was a sinner bound for hell, and richly deserved to be put there.
With all my heart I wanted to belong to Jesus, and one night I knelt down all alone and begged Him to forgive my sins and let me be one of His people. I had no faith at all that He would answer that prayer, but I later was told by a mature Christian lady: 'Pat, that was all He was waiting for!'
She took me through many scriptures speaking of salvation, eternal life and the new birth. I was a new creation, no more in condemnation. 2 Corinthians 5:17 says: 'Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.'
If you are still reading, and you do not know if you are saved and have eternal life, you need to read the scriptures. Seek and you WILL find. You do not have to go to hell; you need to know Jesus, the Savior, personally KNOW Him. You need saving faith, not just mental assent. You get that faith from the scriptures. Faith comes by hearing (or reading, hearing inside your head). You have to hear the Word of God which is in the Bible. Without scripture, you cannot know Jesus.