November 2, 2007

I can’t sing with the stars, but I can shout with the angels

Last Sunday my class discussed the glory that Jesus left when He came to earth. We pondered what it may have been like in a realm with no sin and how different this world is from that one. Imagine pure air, clear water, no unpleasant odors and nothing disturbed or destroyed by the selfish thoughtlessness of man. We couldn’t imagine it.

This morning I read Job 38:4-7. God is speaking to Job about his shortcomings. His words are almost sarcastic as He says, “Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand. Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it? On what were its footings set, or who laid its cornerstone—while the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy?

My imagination was captured by the last line. Stars singing? Angels shouting for joy? These words offer a small glimpse into the glory Jesus had with His Father as He experienced song and sounds I could never hear, yet I find myself longing to know more.

Then another passage of Scripture came to mind. It is from 1 Peter 1:10-12. Peter writes about the glories of redemption in which sinners are transformed by the Word of God, saved from sin and eternal damnation.

He says, “Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest care, trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow. It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Even angels long to look into these things.

Again, my imagination is captured by the last line. Angels, who witnessed creation and singing stars by offering shouts of joy, are not able to grasp the Gospel. One commentary says, “Angels have only the contrast between good and evil, without the power of conversion from sin to righteousness: witnessing such conversion in the Church, they long to penetrate the knowledge of the means whereby it is brought about.”

Again I am elevated to rarified air. I am a mere blip in time and significance, yet Almighty God has given me grace to know what He has done through the life, death and resurrection of His Son. I understand the Gospel and this knowledge is a marvel of His grace to all sinners. Through Christ, anyone, rich or poor, intelligent or simple, handsome or plain, can know what angels do not know!

This sends over me a wave of unworthiness. At the same time, my heart responds with worship. This God whom I love continually astounds me through the wonderful revelations in His Book. He makes me glad again and again that Jesus has invaded my life and captured my heart for Himself. Even though I did not witness the creation along with the angels, I have witnessed a re-creation of my life, so along with the angels, I also shout for joy!

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