I am constantly reminded of God’s greatness and His perfect ways when I study how our Solar System (and specifically the Sun, moon and Earth) is designed perfectly for life on Earth. The moon is unique in that we do not see any other planet with a moon that has the relative size our moon has to Earth. The moon is approximately 1/4 the diameter of the earth. This means the moon affects Earth in more ways than any other planet in our solar system. (In fact, if we were on another planet, the perspective there would be that Earth and the moon are a double planet/binary planet orbit about the Sun.) What’s also unique is the moon’s orbit about Earth is aligned almost perfectly with the Sun for solar and lunar eclipses.
Speaking of eclipses, for the first time in 2 years, there will be a total lunar eclipse Sunday night (5/15) starting at about 8pm and ending around 10:30pm (peak totality occurring at 9:11pm)! Provided the sky is clear in San Francisco. What’s great is that we won’t even need to leave home to view this! This eclipse is also unique because it is called a “blood moon”. Scientifically, our planet is casting a shadow over the moon, from partial to complete. But the moon isn’t completely dark because refracted sunlight is scattered by the atmosphere of Earth and then lands on the moon.
Some might ask, “Doesn’t the Bible tell us that Jesus will return on a blood moon?” Yes, it does. Joel 2:31 (ESV), says, “The sun shall be turned to darkness, and the moon to blood, before the great and awesome day of the LORD comes.” Acts 2:20 also says, “The sun shall be turned to darkness and the moon to blood, before the day of the Lord comes, the great and magnificent day.” However, more will occur. The sun will not give off its light and the stars will no longer shine (Revelation 6:12 and Joel 3:15). In short, all light from the heavens will be extinguished (or veiled). What could do this? (Besides a Black Hole, of which there are none near us?) Only our great and power God. We can marvel at the lunar eclipse, but don’t forget to marvel at the one who put everything in its place. Scripture affirms this in Psalm 8:3, “When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place.” Let us marvel in our Lord!