The Solar System
Long before we had skyscrapers and city lights, casual observers would see a curtain of lights filling the night sky. Some of these lights appeared to brighter, larger, and move slowly across the sky--out of sync with the natural spin of the rest of the stars. Ancient Greeks named these planetai, or wanderers. With advancements in technology and scientific discovery, we recognize that these wandering stars are not stars at all but planets in our Solar System--each with its own path and its own glory.
There are heavenly bodies and earthly bodies, but the glory of the heavenly is of one kind, and the glory of the earthly is of another. There is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; for star differs from star in glory. (1 Corinthians 15:40-41)
Astronomers over the ages uncovered many mysteries about the five original wanderers (Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn) and their even more distant sisters, Uranus and Neptune. Johannes Kepler proposed that these wanderers were not wandering at all but each following a predictable elliptical path around the Sun--each with a different speed and rotation. Some of these wanderers entertained their own host of moons and rings as they made their journey around the Sun.
In light of the journey we are on to consider the Solar System as parts that work together in harmony, you might even consider each planets' orbital path as the steps they follow in a celestial dance around the Sun--a form of worship around the central Light of the World. Psalm 84:11 describes the God of the Bible as a Sun, bestowing favor and honor--blessing those who place their trust in Him.
Blessed are those who dwell in your house, ever singing your praise! Selah! ... For a day in your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere. I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of wickedness. For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly. O LORD of hosts, blessed is the one who trusts in you! (Psalm 84:4, 10-12)
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Dr. Kenneth Fleming leads this class in the Route 104 Science Airstream on Monday mornings.