Saturday, October 17, 2015

Lessons from the sea

Ferries on the Pacific Ocean between mainland BC 
and Vancouver Island (Photo © 2012 by V. Nesdoly)

Ferries on the Pacific Ocean between mainland BC and Vancouver Island

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Job 38:1-21

TO CHEW ON: "Or who shut in the sea with doors,
When it burst forth and issued from the womb ....
When I fixed My limit for it,
And set bars and doors;
When I said,
"This far you may come, but no farther,
And here your proud waves must stop!" - Job 38:8,10-11

At last God 'shows up' out of the whirlwind. In a series of rhetorical questions He speaks to  Job about His creative power and wisdom. Some facts about nature that he draws to Job's attention:
- Job and his friends weren't present at creation.
- Only God can enforce the boundary between sea and land.
- He is the author of the predictable daily changes in the sky that come with morning and night.
- He even understands the mystery of death.

Though we humans have figured out the physics of why many of these things happen, we are still as ignorant of their beginning moments as Job and his friends were. We find ourselves believing either human-generated guesses and theories, or that God created it all, as we're told in Genesis.

The fact of God's control over nature is echoed in other Bible passages. Look, for example, at His control of the sea:

  • God changed the border of the Red Sea so the Israelites could cross - Exodus 14:21; Psalm 106:9.
  • He also controlled the waters of the Jordan River so they could cross into Canaan - Joshua 3:16.
  • The psalmist speaks often of God's sea-controlling power - Psalm 33:7; 77:16; 93:4; 104:9.
  • God declares His power over the sea through Isaiah - Isaiah 50:2.
  • And who can forget the story of Jesus, calming the storm at sea - Luke 8:24?

If God has such power over the literal sea, how can we not trust him with our seas, both literal and metaphorical?  
>Will changes in earth's temperature lead to higher sea levels and destroy life on earth as we know it? 
>Will God abandon us to life's storms of problems and difficulties?

Let's let the words of God through Jeremiah and Isaiah be our answer:

"Do you not fear Me?" says the Lord. "Will you not tremble at My presence, who have placed the sand as the bound of the sea, by a perpetual decree that it cannot pass beyond it? And though its waves toss to and fro, yet they cannot prevail. Though they roar, yet they cannot pass over it" - Jeremiah 5:22
"When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you" - Isaiah 43:2.

PRAYER: Dear God, I acknowledge Your power over nature as its creator. Help me to trust You in the storms of my life. Amen.  

MORE: Sea Facts

  • There are 328,000,000 cubic miles of seawater on earth, covering approximately 71 percent of earth's surface.
  • By volume, the ocean makes up 99 percent of the planet's living space- the largest space in our universe known to be inhabited by living organisms.
  • About 97 percent of all water on earth is in our oceans, 2 percent is frozen in our ice caps and glaciers, less than 0.3 percent is carried in the atmosphere in the form of clouds, rain, and snow. All of our inland seas, lakes and channels combined add up to only 0.02 percent of earth's water.
  • Earth's largest continuous mountain chain is the Mid-Ocean Ridge, stretching for 40,000 miles, rising above the surface of the water in a few places, such as Iceland. It is four times longer than the Andes, Rocky Mountains, and Himalayas combined.
  • Canada has the longest coastline of any country, at 56,453 miles or around 15 percent of the world's 372,384 miles of coastlines.
  • The highest tides in the world are at the Bay of Fundy, which separates New Brunswick from Nova Scotia. At some times of the year the difference between high and low tide is 53 feet 6 inches, the equivalent of a five-story building.

From Ocean Facts (See the

Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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