I laid the foundations of the earth?
Tell Me, if you have understanding.
5 Who determined its measurements?
Surely you know!
Or who stretched the line upon it?
6 To what were its foundations fastened?
Or who laid its cornerstone,
7 When the morning stars sang together,
And all the sons of God shouted for joy?…”
Thus spoke the Lord God to his servant Job, as recorded in one of the oldest books of the Bible. Job didn’t know why severe strokes of ill-fortune (loss of all children, property and health) had beset him. When struck all over his body with painful boils, his wife chided him for holding fast to his integrity, and advised, “Curse God and die!” Then along came three ‘friends’. Overwhelmed by his dire condition they ‘comforted’ him with their conclusions about the cause of his suffering: it’s all the result of his sinfulness. Together with a solid commentary, this instructive book helps us to grasp why bad things happen to good people.
A fourth ‘comforter’ explains it’s a matter of faith and attitude towards God. Then God addresses Job from a whirlwind and in great depth (as above; see Job 38-41). From this, Job wasn’t meant to know the cause of his condition (being Satanic strategy) and we learn God is involved in our lives and deeply moved by our grief and wants us all to come to an end of self-reliance so God becomes ‘all-in-all’. Then God blessed Job even more than previously!
This brief, incomplete overview of the story is for information only because my purpose is to refer to the creation of the stars (as splendidly illustrated by William Blake, courtesy Wikipedia).:
Psalm 19 – the perfect revelation of the Lord
The heavens declare the glory of God;
And the firmament shows His handiwork.
2 Day unto day utters speech,
And night unto night reveals knowledge.
3 There is no speech nor language
Where their voice is not heard.
4 Their line[a] has gone out through all the earth,
And their words to the end of the world.
After breakfast Sunday morning before last I quickly dipped into the above Psalm in my NKJV Study Bible (entitled as shown above). I noted the marginalia cross-reference on translation differences in other texts. But AHA! There’s something profound in the last one, as here with my emphasis.:
[a] Psalm 19:4 Septuagint, Syriac, and Vulgate read sound; Targum reads business.
REVELATION – wow! Thank you Lord ! The Targum, or ancient Aramaic, for the usual Hebrew term ‘qu-m’ (measuring tape of them) renders it not as ‘line’ but as ‘business’. This seems a far more fitting and effective description of the function of the firmament and its stars, as described in the psalmist’s ecstatic praise.
This revelation of the Lord to David clearly ascribes not only a poetic description (as in sound/voice/language – NB. not light) but also a knowledge; or rather, an operational intelligence or ‘business’! That is, a supra-natural function. Furthermore, this sets the rationale, or tenor, for all subsequent verses. These first verses clearly state a case for ‘intelligent design’ of the universe. But more than that – they imply a distinct intelligence implanted within that design’s tangible manifestation, do they not? Or maybe not so?
IS THERE ANYONE OUT THERE ? ANYONE WHO KNOWS THE ANSWER ?
Moreover, could a deep knowledge of this wisdom have been possessed by the ancient prophet Daniel, whose book is written in Aramaic as well as Hebrew? Could it possibly have been handed down from his personal school to a group of ‘magi’ who, therefore, were watching for an especially significant star ‘saying’ they should set off to Judea for the birth of a particular person from God? I wonder…
Worship in a school cafe
Later that morning, I ‘sensed’ several golden angels come through the entrance doors of the hall where we attend church. As we all focussed upon the Lord in worship our band’s vocalist-guitarist, Daniel McDermott, broke into a chorus he’d penned.:
Steal me away to where the morning stars first sang,
and the angels cry with joy, “Worthy is He, Worthy is He!”
Consequently, I later read aloud those opening verses of David’s psalm, and referred to the margin’s note. At house group later in the week, our pastor recommended a video on this subject!
SO, here’s Louie Gigglio’s demonstration of a ‘song’ from what’s in the heavens and on earth. May this bless you and leave you awestruck…
An answer to my above questions came rapidly and unexpectedly, as revealed in the next post on this main theme.