God’s got more surprises in the night. The Associated Press announced today: “NASA confirmed a bonanza of 715 newly discovered planets outside our solar system. Twenty years ago, astronomers had not found any planets circling stars other than the ones revolving around our sun. Astronomers used a new confirmation technique to come up with the largest single announcement of a batch of exoplanets — what planets outside our solar system are called. All the new planets are in systems like ours where multiple planets circle a star. The 715 planets came from looking at just 305 stars.” Isn’t that amazing? And God has a plan for every one of them. He already knew they were there, but we didn’t.
This Saturday will be the new moon, which means the moon is barely a sliver so we will be able to see the stars and planets clearer.
I find it fascinating to look at the night sky and think that it’s basically the same sky mankind looked at thousands of years ago. And God knew what we could see with our naked eyes, so He put the stories of His son Jesus up there for all to read. In fact, what’s written in the sky is much older than any printed version of the Bible.
Psalm 19:1 says: The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament showeth his handywork. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night showeth knowledge. There is no speech nor language where their voice is not heard.
Psalm 147:4 says: “He telleth the number of the stars; he calleth them all by their names.”
There’s not too many people who really know the true meaning of the constellations or the stars they contain. If you’re interested, WITNESS OF THE STARS by E.W. Bullinger is an excellent book on the subject. But here, I’ll give you some brief facts as a teaser to looking up some of the other fascinating information later on.
The names for the constellations, the numbering of the stars within them and the names of the stars have the same meaning in all the ancient nations. The Chinese, Chaldean and Egyptian records go back more than 2000 years B.C. and some sources say that their zodiacs had been copied from records going back even further. The fact that they named the same stars for the same constellation pictures is pretty awesome considering that several of the constellations don’t really look like what they are called.
There are twelve zodiac signs. Between each zodiac sign, there are sometimes several smaller constellations. Each constellation tells a part of the story of Jesus. For example, Virgo (the virgin) is a woman holding a branch in her right hand. The brightest star in Virgo is Spica, which is also known by its Arabic name, Al Zimach, meaning “the branch.” The word “branch” is used in the Bible to denote the Messiah.
Another star in Virgo is Zavijaveh, which means “the gloriously beautiful,” as in Isaiah 4:2: “In that day the branch of the Lord shall be beautiful and glorious.” The star in the arm that bears the branch is named Al Mureddin, which means “who shall come down,” or “who shall have dominion. So the constellation Virgo tells us that the branch of God, Jesus Christ, beautiful and glorious, was coming to earth and would have dominion.
In between Virgo and Leo (the Lion, Jesus Christ) lies the constellation Coma. And next to Coma lies Centaur, with the head of a man and body of a horse, signifying the dual nature of Jesus Christ, who went about doing good (the head) but who was despised of men (ever heard the term “he’s a horse’s ass?”). Well He showed them and continues to do so.
This Saturday when the sky is darkest, how about taking a look at a star map and find the constellations I mentioned—Virgo, Leo, Coma and the Centaur? See if you can remember some of the things I’ve told you here.
For more, check out Witness of the Stars by E.W. Bullinger on Amazon. I also have an extended chapter on this subject in my book, WINGS: A Journey in Faith, also available through Amazon.