Miracles surround our lives, physical miracles that we can see, hear, touch, and taste. But what is the point of those physical gifts and visual miracles that abundantly surround our lives? It’s a theme Pastor John took up in a sermon earlier this year titled, “God’s Peculiar Glory: How We Know the Bible Is True,” a message delivered in Houston. Here’s what Pastor John said.
Here’s the analogy of nature: The heavens are telling the glory of God (see Psalm 19:1). The heavens are telling the glory of God. That means, God expects you to look at the stars, sun, moon, galaxies, cosmos — and, by implication, subatomic particles and the universe within — as well as the universe without, all the majestic, incredible, amazing world that God made, and he expects you to see the glory of God.
Here is the catch. The glory of nature is not the glory of God. It points to the glory of God. It echoes the glory of God. It leads to the glory of God, because Einstein looked at the glory of the heavens and went to church and said: I have seen so much more glory than the preachers. I don’t think they know what they are talking about. When I read that about 20 years ago I thought: I don’t ever want anybody to say that about me. Please, God, don’t let anybody say that when they hear me preach that I just look up in the night sky and I have seen a bigger God than Piper has. Any of you preachers here, make that a resolution. That will never happen, God willing. That will never happen. All that to say, Einstein was not a believer and he saw glory. And he didn’t see the glory of God.
So, what does it mean? The heavens are telling the glory of God. I think it means, there are eyes here [head] and there are eyes here [heart]. And for those who have eyes to see [by faith], when these eyes see [head], they see through. And you know beyond the shadow of a doubt, God made that.
Have you ever been like me? I am walking to church. I have got a path I walk to church. I have probably walked it 10,000 times over the last 35 years. I am a seven-minute walk from my church, 600 paces door to door. I know the trees. I know the apartments. I know this walk. I could do it blindfolded.
There are seasons of the year when the apple blossoms are coming. I know the weekend. I know the concert that always happens on that weekend. Everything is beautiful. And I try sometimes not to believe that God made this tree. I look at this tree, eighty feet tall, branches that probably weigh as much as five cars. And it is March and eighty feet up there, little buds are coming out, and there is no heart pumping in this tree, pushing the sap eighty feet into the air. I get blood — pump, pump, pump — feet to head, feet to head. Sap, I don’t get that. You can call it capillary or whatever. I say: That’s a miracle.
Now, even if you explain it, like put a name on it, capillarity. That helps. I cannot not believe God made that tree. You may think that is naïve. I think when I stand at the judgment day and all the nations are gathered and I am standing there before the living God and God looks out over all the atheists who didn’t believe God made the trees, they are going to look ridiculous.