The Days of Creation Lesson 02 - Firmament
Then God said, "Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters." Thus God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament. And God called the firmament Heaven. So the evening and the morning were the second day.
This passage contained a word that most people gloss over yet very few people understand the meaning of: firmament. The Hebrew word for firmament is the word "rakia," which means "expanse" or "sky."
You might be thinking to yourself that this is a somewhat interesting bit of Bible trivia, but what is the relevance of this passage today? What is so important about the sky?
Let's turn to Psalms 19:1.
- According to this verse, who do the heavens declare the glory of?
- Answer: The heavens declare the glory of God.
- According to this verse, what does the firmament show?
Answer: The firmament shows God's handiwork.
The sky shows us God's handiwork and declares His glory? How can this be? I once went parasailing in Hawaii on a sunny day. I got up about 600 feet in the air and when I looked around me, the sky seemed like an endless expanse. From my vantage point, I was privileged to see the beautiful land in a way you normally would not see in every day life. I tell you that I marveled at God's handiwork in creation as I was parasailing.
The second thing I noticed is that the sky was so blue. Looking below me, the ocean was a vibrant blue color that reflected the color of the sky. Let's look at some Bible verses to see if there is any spiritual significance to the color blue.
Let's turn to Exodus 24:9-10.
- According to these verses, what did Moses and the elders see under God's feet?
- Answer: They saw a paved work of sapphire stone.
- According to these verses, what was this paved work like?
- Answer: It was like the very heavens in its clarity.
Let's turn to Ezekiel 1:26.
- According to this verse, what was above the firmament?
- Answer: A throne
- According to this verse, what does this object appear to be made of?
- Answer: A sapphire stone
Let's turn to Numbers 15:37-41.
- According to these verses, what were the children of Israel commanded to put on the corners of their garments?
- Answer: There were to put tassels made of blue thread on the corners of their garments.
- According to these verses, what was the item on their garments a reminder of?
- Answer: The tassel was a reminder of God's commandments.
The color blue is symbolic of God's commandments. Just as the Israelites were to remember God's commandments when they looked upon the blue tassels on their garments, the blue sky reminds us of God's commandments (Exodus 20:1-17).
Let's turn to Psalms 19;1, 7.
- According to these verses, who are blessed?
- Answer: Blessed are who walk in the law of the Lord.
- According to these verses, what are God's judgments called?
- Answer: Righteous
Let's turn to Psalms 119:89.
- According to this verse, what is settled in heaven?
- Answer: God's word
Let's turn to Psalms 50:6.
- According to this verse, what do the heavens declare?
- Answer: God's righteousness
Many people think the Ten Commandments are just a list of "thou shall not's," but the Ten Commandments are actually a reflection of God's righteous character. When we look at the sky around us, we are not only reminded of God's law, we are reminded of God's righteousness.
Let's turn to Psalms 150:1.
- According to this verse, where is God's sanctuary?
- Answer: God's sanctuary is in His mighty firmament.
Let's turn to 2 Corinthians 12:2-4.
- According to these verses, what is the third heaven?
- Answer: Paradise
When we examine these verses in relation to Genesis 1:6-8, we can infer that the first heaven is the sky surrounding us, the second heaven is outer space, and the third heaven is where God resides and where the heavenly sanctuary is located.
Let's turn to Philippians 3:20.
- According to this verse, where is our citizenship?
- Answer: In heaven
Let's turn to Acts 1:11.
- According to this verse, where will Jesus return from?
- Answer: Heaven
When we look up in the blue sky, let us remember that Jesus is coming soon for His people - people who accept Him as their Lord and Savior. Jesus will come again for His people who keep His commandments, not to be saved, but because they are saved. Their character will be a reflection of His righteous character.
Friend, when you look up in the sky, will you remember God's Ten Commandments, His righteous character, and that Jesus is coming again very soon?