The Archbishop's Page
"That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith...and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God."
(Ephesians 3:17-19 KJV)
This month we will be reminded in an unique fashion of the Scripture that tells us that "the Heavens declare the glory of God." On August 21, there will be a total eclipse of the Sun that will be visible over most of the United States in the middle of the day. This will indeed be a "once in a lifetime" event for many people, depending upon how old they are, because it will not happen again for North American until 2024 for people in Texas and New Mexico. What is it that makes an eclipse so important to us as people of faith?
We need to remember that there are events in Scripture that involve major celestial events. In the Old Testament, we recall that when Joshua was fighting the Amorites, at his command the Sun stood still in the sky so as to provide a longer day for the battle to be won. In the Book of Joshua 10:12-14, it is recorded that "there was no day like that before it or after it." Of course, there was no doubt in the mind of the writer that God had seen to it that Joshua would defeat the Amorites, and, to be perfectly honest, even in the 21st Century, we are hard put to explain it any other way. Yet, there is little doubt that it occurred.
In the New Testament on Good Friday, when Our Lord was hanging on The Cross, we are told that the sky darkened. There is little doubt that this was an eclipse of the Sun that would have been total in order to create that impression. Modern astronomers have confirmed that there was indeed a total eclipse visible in Jerusalem at that time. That said, despite all of our scientific prowess, we remain in awe of this particular type of event. Why?
Quite simply, a total eclipse of the sun reminds us that we are not in charge. . .God is. From the point of view of the Faith, the darkening of the sky reminds us that the world, without the light of God's love, is a dark place. When the Sun emerges from the Moon's shadow, as we know it will, its glow and warmth renews in us the knowledge and assurance of God's love for His creation. . .including us. Such an event indeed declares the glory of God in a way like no other.
Peace and Blessings from your Servant in the Faith