The Largest Picture Ever Taken

Maanya Sachdeva it’s a mammoth 1.5 billion pixel image (69, 536 x 22, 230) and requires about 4.3 GB disk space. Oh, and it’ll take your breath away.

On January 5, NASA released an image of the Andromeda galaxy, our closest galactic neighbour, captured by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. The full image is made up of 411 Hubble images, takes you through a 100 million stars and travels over more than 40,000 light years. Well, a section of it anyway.

Prepare to feel extremely tiny and insignificant as you marvel at this fly-through video created by YouTuber daveachuk and make sure you stick around till the end. Seriously.

The Universe had a beginning

In this excerpt from his message at the Ligonier 2012 National Conference, Dr. Stephen Meyer tells the story of how Hubble showed Einstein that the universe was not eternal but must have had a beginning.

The Universe Had a Beginning from Ligonier Ministries on Vimeo.

Transcript

Hubble came into astronomy in the 1920’s at a very propitious time. It was at just the time that astronomers were gaining access to these large dome telescopes that were able to resolve very tiny pinpoints of light in the night sky. Prior to Hubble and the scientists who were looking into the night sky in the 1920’s, there was debate among astronomers as to whether or not the Milky Way galaxy, in which our solar system resides, was the only galaxy, or whether there might be others beyond it. Hubble resolved that issue as he also resolved these points of light, because as he looked through this great dome telescope at the Palomar Observatory, he was able to determine that little points of light that had been viewed through ordinary telescopes before, and just looked like little points, actually revealed galaxies—whole galaxies with hundreds and millions of stars.

The picture behind us is a Spindle Nebula, and he saw Spiral Nebula, many different galaxies in every quadrant of the sky. Such that today, astronomers have something they call the “Hubble Deep Field,” and it’s a picture of the night sky. On the picture behind you’ll see a little square box, a little quadrant. Now the next slide is going to be that quadrant magnified further and you see that even in the tiniest little square in the night sky there are galaxies galore. Continue reading

The Size of Earth

To gain a mental grasp of the size of earth compared to other objects in space can be difficult. I certainly need all the help I can get. The photos at this link help.

God is at the Center

“Thou hast created all things, and for Thy pleasure they are and were created.” Rev. 4:11

The 16th Century was famous for at least two monumental events: The Protestant Reformation and the Copernican Revolution. No doubt, you have heard of the Reformation when men such as Martin Luther, were raised up by God to bring the one true biblical Gospel back to the Church. With the Reformers of old and with Scripture alone as our sure foundation, we affirm that justification is by grace alone, through faith alone, because of Christ alone, to the glory of God alone.

In 1543, Nicolas Copernicus published his treatise De Revolutionibus Orbium Coelestium (The Revolution of Celestial Spheres) where a new view of the world was presented: the heliocentric (sun central) model. Before Copernicus, people believed that the earth was the very center of the Universe. But Copernicus was able to prove otherwise – that it is the sun (not the earth) that is central in the solar system. This discovery shook both the religious and the scientific world. The ramifications were extremely dramatic. Our view of the world was forever changed!

Copernicus’ theory was not at all popular initially. Even though the new treatise was dedicated to the Pope, it was considered heretical both by the standards of religion and science. Such was the outrage at such a thought (that the world was not the center of the Universe) that many scientists, and sadly, even many a theologian, would not even look through Copernicus’ telescope! The traditions of men, both in the realms of science and religion, were that strong.

Yet Copernicus was right and his revolutionary idea was needed if forward progress was to be made. In the Church today, I believe a similar revolution is needed. Continue reading

Star Size Comparisons

Psalm 8:3 When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, 4 what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him? 5 Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor.

David, the Psalmist, understood far less about the Universe than we do in the 21st century, and yet he knew enough to be able to make the connection between the observable heavens and the astonishing fact that God is actually interested in us. Of course, He is more than interested. But why? What on earth is of interest to God?

David asked the question this way, “What is man that You think of him?” Its a question God never answers for us in Scripture. He never tells us why He loves us. Yet, for reasons known only to God, He has decided to set His love on us, and to redeem a vast number of former rebels and despisers of His, out of every tribe, tongue, people group and nation (Rev 5:9), giving them salvation and endless joy in His presence forever! God actually entered into our world and became a man, so that He could be the Savior of men. The fact that “Christ came into the world to save sinners” (1 Tim. 1:15) is something that should overwhelm and amaze us. Why would He even bother with us? What is man that He even remembered how to find us, let alone would come to save us? In considering the vastness of the heavens, let us, like David, be humbled and amazed that God thinks of us and loves us.

It is extremely difficult to even begin to grasp the gigantic size of objects in space but perhaps this short video will help.

The Wonders of Natural Revelation

Natural Revelation is a phrase used by theologians to describe what God has revealed about Himself through the natural world around us. There is enough revelation in nature for God to declare that mankind knows of His existence inherently so that to deny such leaves a person “without excuse.”

God does not believe in atheists! That is the claim of the Bible in Romans 1:20 where it tells us that God’s invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made.

As spectacular as natural revelation is, it has its limitations. Nature does not tell us everything about God, or even all we need to know about God for salvation. Therefore, in addition to natural revelation, God has also given us Special Revelation, the God breathed Scriptures (the Bible). The Apostle Paul, writing to Timothy wrote, “But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.” (2 Tim. 3:14,15) Scripture tells us who this Creator God is and how we can be put in right standing with Him through the gospel of Jesus Christ. Continue reading

The Size of the Universe

Here are two videos which allow us to gain some sense of the size of the Universe. What a waste of space!!!… unless the whole purpose of everything out there is something other than you and me, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.” – Psalm 19:1

Continue reading