The Heaven Above by Merrill Leong

Lucifer is not the name of the Prince of Darkness; it’s the Latin or Graeco Roman name for the planet Venus. Vain and egoistic kings like Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon liken their glory to be like the 3rd brightest “star” in the heavens.

You can see a carving of this in the British Museum where an ancient king is seen wearing a necklace of the 4 brightest objects in the sky… the Sun, Moon, Venus and the star Sirius.

Lucifer, or the planet Venus had been often portrayed in medieval art as a young man, and from this we have the erroneous depiction of Lucifer as the devil. This view has been unfortunately carried over even into present times, and this is especially true in churches that use the King James Version, English Bible of 1611.

The name Lucifer (meaning Light Bearer or bright and shining one) is found only in the old KJV and its use is still popular amongst the Pentecostals.

In referring to King Nebuchadnezzar we read in Isaiah 14:12… How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning? How art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations? (KJV)

However, all modern English Bibles no longer use that name, preferring instead for…

Isaiah 14:12… How you are fallen from heaven, O Day Star, son of Dawn! How you are cut down to the ground, you who laid the nations low! (ESV)

Bright and Morning Star is actually a description and a Biblical name for Jesus.

Revelation 22:16… I, Jesus, have sent my angel to testify to you about these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star. (ESV)

It is not surprising that Jesus is compared to the bright morning star for it is the most beautiful heavenly object at dawn prior to sunrise, and at times just around twilight as the evening star. Venus is both the morning and evening star because it is nearer to the sun than the Earth. It is the 2nd planet from the sun; our Earth is 3rd.

Planet means “moving star” and because of its position revolving around the sun, waxes and wanes like the moon, brightening and dimming as it does so.

I’m bringing Venus up to draw your attention to the sky above when you do your quiet time and when you’re worshipping. The psalmist says in Psalms 19:1… The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims His handiwork.

Look up into the heavens then. That’s also how Jesus prayed; He lifted His eyes to the heavens. We read in John 11:41 where Lazarus was raised from the dead… So they took away the stone. And Jesus lifted up His eyes and said, Father, I thank You that You have heard me.

Also in John 17:1… When Jesus had spoken these words, He lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour has come; glorify Your Son that the Son may glorify You.

Astronomy (not astrology, which is a form of fortune telling) is an amazing subject for indeed the sky above proclaims the glory of God. Unfortunately the Malaysian sky is largely covered up nowadays, but in my flying days it was always a treat to see the heavens open up in a blaze of glory over the desert night sky. That’s always a great time to remember God’s love for me.

There’re many references in the Bible on the heavens and constellations because God created not only the earth, but also the heavens. It says in Genesis 1:14… And God said, Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years…

Another is Job 38:32… Can you lead forth the Mazzaroth (constellations) in their season, or can you guide the Bear (Ursa Major and Ursa Minor) with its children?

The heavens is a calendar to regulate and schedule functions without which life, cannot exist. Thanks to the lunar cycle we have sea life; aviary and eggs; the oestrous and menstrual cycles, etc. Everything is so precisely controlled and managed, pointing to a loving master designer.

In fact, everything was designed and arranged for life to exist on earth, without which you and I cannot exist… the biosphere; the ecological system; the natural balanced forces; the solar system, etc. It is a heavenly Father who brought forth all things to demonstrate his loving kindness, much like a mother hen hovering over her eggs in order to bring them to hatch.

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