#12──第一層天─天空──The First Heaven – Sky
English version at the bottom of this page
我們的天空可能最被我們所知的是那些蓬鬆的白色小東西，它們隨風飄舞。從因水的蒸騰作用而出現的霧，到卷雲狀的雷頭，雲確實很雄偉。拿瑪人瑣法告訴約伯，惡人的頭頂到雲中，是的，甚至達到天上。155這似乎不對，不是嗎？但當你考慮到天空，或者說天，在你離開這大地後立即開始，那麼它就有意義了。這些雲：積雲 (Cumulus)、層雲 (Stratus)、中雲 (Alto)和卷雲 (Cirrus)，都有它們在天空中的一天（甚至現在的人造雲）。它們以其輝煌的姿態管理和統治著大地。箴言告訴我們，當祂（上帝）使上面的天空堅硬的時候，同時深淵的泉水也變得穩固。156這聽起來完全像創造的第二天。
155 約伯記20:6 「他的尊榮雖達到天上、頭雖頂到雲中。」
156 箴言8:28 「上使穹蒼堅硬、下使淵源穩固。」
160 創世記2:5,6 KJV “田地裡的一切植物在地上，田地裡的一切草木在地上生長，因為耶和華神沒有叫雨落在地上，也沒有人耕地。但有霧從地上升起，澆灌了全地。”
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Part Two: The System of Visible Creation
I: Heaven──Chapter 12: The First Heaven – Sky
The visible creation is plainly seen. Simply walk out of your front door and see it. When God said “Let there be a firmament to divide the waters from the waters” on day two, He wasn’t just creating the firmament. He was creating a system of governance for the way the sky works. The firmament is the second heaven. We will discuss that in the next chapter. But the firmament was a splendid creation to separate all of the skies from one another.
The under-heaven, what we call “sky”, was a by-product of the separation of the waters from the waters. He did not need to say: “Let there be a heaven, and a firmament above it. In the creation of the firmament, He created our sky.
Our sky is probably most known to us by those fluffy little white things that dance along the wind. From the fog that appears due to water transpiration, to the Cumulonimbus thunderhead, the clouds are majestic indeed. Zophar the Naamathite told Job that wicked man’s height reaches into the clouds, yes, even into the heavens.1 That doesn’t seem right, does it? But when you consider that the sky, or the heavens, start immediately after you leave the earth, then it makes sense. The clouds: Cumulus, Stratus, Alto, and Cirrus all have their day in the sky (even man- made clouds nowadays). They rule and reign over the earth in their splendor. Proverbs tells us that when He (God) made firm the sky above, it was at the same time the springs of the deep became fixed.2 This sounds perfectly like Day Two of creation.
Solomon doesn’t stop with this though. He also points out that by His (God’s) knowledge the deep was broken and the sky dripped with dew. This is a reference to the great flood of Noah, which we will cover later. Clouds are not often thought of as a theological statement, but something else that happens with clouds often is. The rainbow. What was said of the rainbow in Genesis? “I will set my bow in the clouds and it will be a sign of the covenant that I have with you.”3 This covenant sign takes a little bit to understand so we will now take the time to do it. It’s integral to the understanding of the first heaven.
The rainbow makes its grand appearance around 1656 years4 after creation, when Noah, his wife, his three sons, and their wives are safely deposited down on Ararat Mountain after the World’s Great Deluge. “When Noah was six hundred years old, on the seventeenth day of the second month all the outlets of the vast body of water beneath the earth burst open, all the floodgates of the sky were opened.”5 The floodgates of the firmament were opened. Get that? The entire third heaven rained down into the first heaven via the floodgates, which are in the second heaven.
We don’t know how many floodgates there are, or where they are located, but here they are, raining down a torrent. Not only this, but the “fountains of the deep” opened up to release water up to the earth. God was serious. This was no joke. The literal sky was falling and it was bubbling up onto the surface. It rained for 40 days and 40 nights, and the water stayed on the earth, keeping Noah and all the animals afloat for 150 days.
We have to remember that it was recorded in the first part of Genesis 2 that it had never rained before.6 So what was this stuff coming down? It was the first time it had rained and it was sure to have been a sight. There were no clouds forming overhead to warn anyone. The mists had taken care of that. When the floodgates opened, it would have been a sight to behold. And from the great deep came up bubbling torrents of water. The Bible records that every mountain was submerged. This was not a localized flood. This was the real deal. Almost every ancient civilization records this, and it has only been in recent years that man has denied the truth of God’s Word. We will talk more about the floodgates as well as the “Great Deep” in later chapters. Our emphasis in this chapter, is to point to our sky… The first heaven, and its importance in Biblical Cosmology.
Let’s talk about the rainbow. At the time that Noah and his family were released from the ark, God blessed them and gave them meat to eat and cut covenant with him in an unheard of lengthy set of verses from Genesis 9:11-17. It seems very clear that God means business when He reminds Noah again and again what this covenant is and what it is for. Let us look at it:
“And I will establish my covenant with you; neither shall all flesh be cut off any more by the waters of a flood; neither shall there anymore be a flood to destroy the earth. And God said, This is the token of the covenant which I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations: I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth. And it shall come to pass, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow shall be seen in the cloud: And I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh. And the bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is upon the earth. And God said unto Noah, This is the token of the covenant, which I have established between me and all flesh that is upon the earth.”7
Why this long speech? Does it make sense if there had already been refraction before on the earth? No it does not. There had never been cloud cover before. Remember, God created light on the first day, so if there had been clouds and rain before, the laws of light would have existed for the refraction of the rainbow. But there had never been a rainbow before. There had never been a reason for rain. Everything got what it needed from the mist that came up through the ground. Clouds were not needed. But here, after our world-wide flood, there is a rainbow, and God seized this opportunity to impress upon all of mankind (the eight remaining people) what it was, why it was, and how we should take a lesson from it. God was starting over and He wanted us to be reminded of that. He called it an “everlasting covenant” for a reason.
1 Job 20:6
2 Proverbs 8:28
3 Genesis 9:13
4 Genesis 5 explains these numbers.
5 Genesis 7:11, GNT
6 Genesis 2:5,6 KJV “And every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew: for the LORD God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was not a man to till the ground. But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground.”
7 Genesis 9:11-17 KJV
──Biblical Cosmology by Pauly Hart
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