Posts Tagged ‘eternity’

How long is eternity?

June 7, 2015

Psalm 90--2Modified and re-posted from last year, the Verse of the Day for June 7, 2015 is found in Psalm 90:2, 4 (KJV):

Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God. For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past, and as a watch in the night.

Take a look at this rendering of Psalm 90:2,4 in the New Living Translation:

Before the mountains were born,
before you gave birth to the earth and the world,
from beginning to end, you are God.

For you, a thousand years are as a passing day,
as brief as a few night hours.

Here we find verses that make known the magnitude of God. Indeed, the Scriptures speak of “the God eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, to whom is due glory and honor and majesty forever and ever.” Other passages reveal the magnitude of an eternal God who is great and greatly to be praised.

1 Peter 5:10 speaks of “the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus. . . .” and 1 Timothy 1:17 makes known this magnificent benediction:

Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.

In addition, Deuteronomy 33:27 makes a similar declaration about who God is and what He will do:

The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms: and he shall thrust out the enemy from before thee; and shall say, Destroy them.

God is timeless. The above scriptures and others speak of eternity. As finite beings we have difficulty comprehending the infinite. I recall two analogies which help us to grasp to a degree eternity:

First of all, take a bucket, the size that you could handle, and use that bucket to remove water from all the seven seas or all the water that covers the earth. When you have completed the task that would mark the first day of eternity.

Another analogy asks that we imagine the Earth as a solid sphere of stainless steel. Every thousand years, a white dove takes a journey from the farthest side of the universe and flies to Earth and touches the planet with a brush of its wing, wearing away a microscopic amount of the planet. After a period of time the bird eventually wears away the whole earth. When this occurs, the first day of eternity will begin.

In addition, song writers attempt to express the eternal nature of God. The passage from Psalm 90 is the inspiration for one of the popular hymns by the great 18th Century hymn writer, Isaac Watts, “Even from everlasting, Thou art God.” The well-known hymn is offered in three different versions. The first is a “shape note anthem,” an example of “Sacred Harp singing” or “shape-note singing. Shape notes are a music notation designed to facilitate congregational and community singing. Harp singing or shape note singing dates back to the colonial period and continues to enjoy popularity in the rural South and elsewhere.

The second version is “O God, Our Help in Ages Past” comes from the Sharon Mennonite Bible Institute Singers

The third version is a contemporary rendering of “O God, Our Help in Ages Past” by Harvest Church.

Lord, help us to see to a greater degree, the magnitude of eternity.