February 2008
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Billie Silvey
Where Is God?
--a religious cosmology
In 1961, the year I
graduated from high
school, Russian
cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin
became the first man in
space.  Not long after,
Soviet Premier Krushchev
said “Gagarin flew into
space but didn’t see
any God there.�

There is no evidence that Gagarin ever
said those words, but his achievement
was monumental.  Besides being a
milestone event in the history of
humanity’s comprehension of
space, it stimulated the United States
to take Russia and space seriously and
stimulated the our languishing science
programs.

Still, we’re left with the question.  
As we grow in our understanding of
space, where does God fit in?
Old Testament
Cosmology
The Old Testament presents a uniform religious cosmology.  
On the second day of creation, God made the firmament to
separate the waters below from the waters above.  He called
it Heaven.  Then, on the fourth day, he made the sun, moon
and stars and set them in the firmament (Genesis 1:6-7, 14-
18).

Psalm 19:1 tells us that “the heavens declare the glory of
God; and the firmament shows his handiwork.�

The prophet Ezekiel saw a vision of four creatures.  â€œThe
firmament above their heads was like the color of an awesome
crystal, stretched out over their heads,â€� he said.  â€œA
voice came from above the firmament that was over their
heads.â€�  He saw the “likeness of a throne,â€� like
sapphire, with a man high above it.  â€œLike the appearance
of a rainbow in a cloud on a rainy day, so was the appearance
of the brightness all around it.  This was the appearance of the
glory of the Lord.  So when I saw it, I fell on my face, and I
heard a voice of One speaking� (Ezekiel 1:22-28).

The Old Testament paints a picture of a physical, glorious and
transcendent God.
New Testament Cosmology
The New Testament, on the
other hand, presents a less
tangible, more spiritual, and
more immanent view.
In Christ and because of him,
God lives with us and in us.  
Jesus said that “if anyone
loves me, he will obey my
teaching.   My father will love
him, and we will come to him
and make our home with himâ
€� (John 14:23).
And John wrote in Revelation, “Now the dwelling of God is
with men, and he will live with them.  They will be his people,
and God himself will be with them and be their God�
(Revelation 21:3).

According to the writer of Hebrews, “By faith we
understand that the universe was formed at God’s
command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was
visibleâ€� (Hebrews 11:3).  Though we can travel in space and
never actually see God, we see him everywhere we go through
the eyes of faith.
History of Cosmology
Elder in Space