Light and Dark at the End (Lent 28, 2017)

A supernova, the end of a sun:  “Astronomers have spotted a mysterious flash of X-rays coming from a galaxy 10.7 billion light years away.  The phenomenon, discovered by NASA’s Chandra X-ray observatory in the deepest X-ray image ever obtained, has baffled scientists after it suddenly erupted in brightness and then faded from view just a day later.  Experts suspect it may have come from a ‘completely new type of cataclysmic event,’ with gamma-ray bursts and even destruction of a white dwarf star thought possibly to blame.” (Cheyenne Macdonald)

In the snarky comments associated with this article  people wrote about the end of a sun,

  • Scientists detect speck of light and go into wild speculation. 
  • Another sign from God? Oh wait, this is 10.7 billion years ago and we all know the universe was created 6000 years ago. 
  • Looks like the Empire just blew up Alderaan with their Planet Killer. 
  • As if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.
  • Zzzzzz.

Sleep away and mock and dismiss, but they’re signs—yeah from the Bible—of the end of the world as we know it. 

Quoting Isaiah 13:10, Jesus says about the end times,

Immediately after the distress of those days ‘the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from the sky, and the heavenly bodies will be shaken.’ (Matthew 24:29)

It’s also in Mark 13: 23 “So be on your guard; I have told you everything ahead of time. 24 “But in those days, following that distress, ‘the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; 25 the stars will fall from the sky, and the heavenly bodies will be shaken.’ 26 “At that time men will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory. 27 And he will send his angels and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of the heavens.”

Jesus tells us not to be found catching our Zzzzzz’s, but to be on our guard.  He’s coming and a darkened Sun–this time ours–is but one of the signs of the end.

Fun fact of light: Supernovas. Science and health journalist, Erin Brodwin writes that scientists were “sampling the atmospheres of two dead stars in the Hyades Cluster…This is what they think happened: When stars begin to give out, the contraction and expansion they undergo causes their masses to fluctuate wildly. When one mass of one planet in a solar system changes, it throws off the precarious gravitational balance of surviving planets and the asteroids between them. When the asteroids swing towards the dead star, they are shattered by its pull, and their scattered remains may settle to Saturn-like rings that circle the inert star.

Here’s why it matters: … By piecing together the birth and death of stars in other solar systems, scientists hope to understand how our solar system formed — and what will happen when our Sun perishes. “ 

For further thought:

  • No offense to Ms. Brodwin, but once our Sun is darkened and the stars fall from the sky, is it really going to matter for this life, or is it the end, game over? 
  • Are you ready for the day of Christ’s return?

Lord Jesus, we thank You that You have told us ahead of time so that we might be prepared for Your return.  Grant that we would be found watching, not sleeping…found faithful, not rebelling…and found hopeful regarding the New Heaven and New Earth and not just trying to hold onto this one.  Amen.

Categories Articles and Devotionals, Devotionals | Tags: | Posted on March 31, 2017

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