January 21, 2013
Teachers Talk - In Contemplation of the Universe
Kandice Nelkenbrecher, Teacher, Seventh-day Adventist Christian School, Saskatoon, SK

My brothers and I were the only Seventh-day Adventists in the public elementary and secondary schools that we attended. Evolution and the theory of The Big Bang were taught as fact, and few teachers addressed the Biblical account of Creation. I am thankful for the parental guidance that kept our faith in God strong and gave us the courage to stand up for the Biblical account of Creation found in Genesis. Now, as a teacher at the Seventh-day Adventist Christian School in Saskatoon, I am able to talk openly with my students about God, Creation, and the counterfeits with which Satan has fooled so many.
 
The next unit I will be covering in Science this year is Astronomy. I am very excited to help my students discover the wonderful creations that God has made in this universe. Also, I will endeavour to help them better understand the deep love God has for us. While preparing for this unit, my understanding of the universe, our galaxy, and our solar system has increased. I’ve also uncovered more knowledge of God, His amazing creativity, and His love for our little blue planet.
 
God is so much larger than our finite minds can even begin to imagine. Through an examination of the vastness and beauty of the universe with its innumerable stars and galaxies students can begin to see the awesomeness of our God. God has painted the seeming emptiness of space with objects of immense size and splendour. In I Kings 8:27, Solomon, in awe of God’s greatness and glory, asks, “But will God indeed dwell on the earth? Behold, heaven and the heaven of heavens cannot contain You.” God’s power maintains the structure and movements of the universe. The intricate paths followed by the stars, planets, galaxies, and comets are all controlled by the hand of God.
 
The study of the universe has a profound impact of the minds of children. On page 99 of the book Education, Ellen White writes: “The susceptible mind, brought in contact with the miracle and mystery of the universe, cannot but recognize the working of infinite power.” God created the universe and all that is in it. “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows his handiwork.” (Ps. 19:1) In Job chapter 38 and verses 4 through 7, God proclaims His ownership of this earth through its creation by His hands. “Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? … Who determined its measurements? … Or who stretched the line upon it? To what were its foundations fastened? Or who laid its cornerstone, when the morning stars sang together, and all of the sons of God shouted for joy?” It is a wonderful and comforting thought that God is in control and has a plan for us and for our planet.
 
Earth is one small speck in the immense breadth of our own galaxy let alone the entire universe. In Psalm 8:3, 4, David is humbled by his contemplation of the universe. “When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have ordained, what is man that You are mindful of him, and the son of man that you visit him.” Despite our small size, the planet Earth has been at center stage in the universe. God created human beings to be His closest friends, but we chose to doubt the One who formed us with His own hands and breathed life into our nostrils. Nevertheless, God hasn’t given up on us, and He sent His own son, Jesus, our creator, to this earth. All eyes in the universe were and are still fixed on this earth. Jesus lived among us, then died to save us, and rose again to restore us to our Heavenly Father. In the entire study of the universe no thought has been as sobering and inspiring as God’s sacrifice for this earth.