Preaching the Gospel, Preparing a People

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Fred Whitlark

United Church of God Pastor

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  • fwhitlark

    If God’s throne is in heaven, and the Earth is His footstool, then is not God “above” the Earth. and above the circle (orbit) of the earth?

    Isa. 66:1 - So says Lord, Heaven is My throne, and earth My footstool.

    Although it is common to hear phrases like “way up north”, or to refer to Australia as the land “down under”, in reality in this three dimensional Universe, matter and space extend in all directions for as far as we can see (about 13 Billion light years distant). So from that standpoint there is no “up” or “down”.

    But we do make references to up and down and north and south, and so we should view Isa. 40:22 from that perspective. If indeed God’s throne is somewhere in the northern sky, then He would be sitting “above” earth, and from His perspective … the orbit that the Earth makes each year would indeed look like a circle (Earth’s orbit is not perfectly circular, it is slightly eliptical in nature).

    I do find it interesting that when looking at a map of the world, the majority of the land mass and the majority of the earth’s population is in the northern Hemisphere, and that makes it easier for God to see what is going on here below … :)

  • fwhitlark

    which gave the same explanation that you give above. I asked Dr. Paldi, the Hebrew professor at AC about this word chug, and he described it as an airplane making a circuit or multiple circles around the airport, waiting for clearance to land.

    4. If we assume that the real meaning of this passage is about Earth’s orbit rather than its shape, there are a number of other things that strike me as very interesting:

    Is there any Biblical reference regarding the possible location of God’s throne?

    Isa. 14:13 - For you have said in your heart, I will go up to the heavens, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north.

    Ps. 48:2 - Beautiful on high, the joy of the whole earth, is mount Zion, on the sides of the north, the city of the great King.

    Ps. 75:6-7 - For promotion comes neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south. But God is the judge; He puts down one and sets up another. (comment … which direction is missing? The north!)

  • fwhitlark

    I appreciated your short article on God and Astronomy, and thought it was overall very good. However, I disagree with one paragraph …

    “The roundness of the earth is even mentioned in the Bible, as it states: “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” (Isaiah 40:22). “

    I do not believe that this is referring to the shape of the earth, but rather is a reference to earth’s orbit around the sun. Let me state some reasons …

    1. A circle is a 2-dimensional construct, whereas the earth is a 3-dimensional object. As the [3 dimensional] Earth revolves around the Sun, it makes a complete [2 dimensional] circle once every 365 1/2 days.

    2. In almost every translation I checked (AV, RSV, NIV, KJV, NKJV, and others in my eSword software), the Hebrew word chug is rendered as circle. If the author had wanted to describe the spherical shape of our planet, there is a Hebrew word dur that means a ball.

    3. When I came to AC Pasadena in the fall of 1971, there was an article in the PT that referenced this scripture in Isaiah, which gave the