Did You See God in the Eclipse?

Gabriel Arias #13 of the Cleveland Guardians looks up at the total solar eclipse before the home opener against the Chicago White Sox on April 8, in Cleveland, Ohio.
Mike Lawrie/Getty Images

Did You See God in the Eclipse?

Several cities and states across America declared a state of emergency today due to the crowds of people traveling for the solar eclipse. In 2017, an estimated 200 million Americans watched America’s last solar eclipse, either in person or electronically. But have you considered the most underreported facet of this extraordinary phenomenon?

Let’s say you’re one of the millions of Americans who live near the path of “totality,” where the sun was totally eclipsed by the moon. You drove an hour to the nearest city that lay in the path of the shadow of the moon, and when you got there, you joined hundreds of other people to witness this incredible event.

But let’s say you are a more avid stargazer than most. And that you learned about today’s eclipse back in 1981 by reading Astronomy when you were 11. Isn’t it remarkable how you knew even way back then that there would be a total solar eclipse on April 8, 2024? In fact, in 1981, you knew not only the date of the 2024 solar eclipse but also the exact route of the path of totality, exactly how wide that path would be, the exact moment when totality would start in each city, and precisely how long it would last.

Think on this remarkable reality: In 1981 (an accurate yet somewhat arbitrary date), we knew the precise date, time and location of the path of totality of a solar eclipse that would take place 238,900 miles from the surface of the Earth 43 years in the future! Isn’t this just astonishing? That we had that much knowledge available about an event so distant, both in time and space.

What made the eclipse so remarkably predictable? It was predictable because the universe operates according to incredibly strong, incredibly specific, incredibly certain laws. These laws are unchangeable. And these are laws that humanity, thanks to Johannes Kepler and some other very smart people, now understand. They are also laws that millions of people in the United States literally stood in awe of today.

We’ve long known this eclipse was coming because we’ve long understood the laws that govern the travel of the sun, moon and Earth. (In fact, thanks to our understanding of these laws, we can forecast all sorts of eclipses decades in advance.)

Most of us rarely think about the many unseen laws that cause eclipses—the same laws that prevent our instant death. We rarely think about the fate of the Earth should it stray even slightly out of its orbit, or turn a few seconds too fast, or if the moon got held up a minute or two. The many laws presiding over our fate are so crucial, yet forgettable and easily taken for granted. And there’s the rub.

Because we seldom think on these laws, we seldom think on their origins.

This eclipse was an opportunity to marvel at the laws that hold our universe together and to marvel at the Author and Creator of those laws!

The most thrilling aspect of today’s eclipse wasn’t the fact that a large swath of America turned dark for a minute or two. The most magnificent part of the eclipse was the fact that it was a function of certain specific astronomic laws—laws created by a supreme Lawmaker! The eclipse is 1,000 times more exciting when we begin pondering the power of the laws that made it possible, where they originated, when they came into existence, who designed and created them, and how they are maintained.

Think about this logically: Doesn’t the presence of these laws imply the presence of a Lawgiver? Some believe the universe, and the laws it operates by, burst suddenly into existence. Evidence doesn’t exist to support this claim, and it isn’t rational. (Some scientists who promote this order-from-disorder theory also tell us that order cannot be created from disorder.) Isn’t it more logical and rational to conclude that the existence of unchangeable, absolute, yet unseen laws demand the existence of a supreme Lawgiver?

God declares in His written Word that He is that Lawgiver (James 4:12). Countless biblical passages refer to God as the supreme Creator of the universe, the Being ultimately responsible for yesterday’s incredible event. Consider Job 26:7: “He stretches out the north over the void, and hangs the earth upon nothing” (Revised Standard Version). What a beautifully poetic musing on God’s supreme universe-forming, universe-sustaining power.

Meditate on Psalm 19:1: “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork” (English Standard Version). The heavens over America today declared the glory of God! Make no mistake, God absolutely was directly involved in today’s eclipse. It wasn’t a spontaneous miracle or a sign that Jesus Christ is returning today; it was a function of the immutable, unchangeable laws God set in motion 6,000 years ago!

It was, to paraphrase King David, a dramatic proclamation of His handiwork!

Before we all move on with our lives, let’s take a moment to think on this. Let’s make sure we see and appreciate how today’s solar eclipse obscured the sun and revealed God. That event—like the universe, our planet and all its laws—proves God’s existence. This lesson is all around us, if only we are willing to have an open mind and study the creation. As the Apostle Paul wrote, “For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen …” (Romans 1:20).

If you are interested in proving God’s existence with the physical creation, request Herbert W. Armstrong’s booklet Does God Exist? It is short but jam-packed with tangible, living, incontrovertible proof that God is more real than the sun or moon He created.

I’ll conclude with one of this booklet’s many blockbuster statements:

If you can look about you, and observe how intelligently planned and executed is everything in nature and in plant and animal life [and in the universe]—everything we see except the bungling, botching, polluting of God’s beautiful handiwork by the clumsy hand of God-ignoring-and-rejecting man—and then say you doubt the existence of an all-wise, all-knowing, all-powerful Creator God, then I do not have much faith either in your rational processes or your sincerity as a seeker of the truth!