By CLIVE BUTCHER
Tuesday 28 July 2020
Have you seen the comet? Comet Neowise will be visible this Month when the skies are clear, look low to the north-north west after sunset and to the north-east before sunrise. It is worth rising early or staying up later, as it is an impressive sight. Comets visible to the naked eye are rare and many times a comet has been predicted to become a sensation only to disappoint . The quote ‘ Comets are like cats : they have tails and do precisely what they want’ is very true !
We now know that comets are balls of dirty ice that travel around the Sun, taking from a relatively few years to thousands to complete one orbit. Comets have been seen as omens. In Shakespeare's Julius Caesar Calpurnia says
‘ When beggars die no comets are seen, the heavens themselves blaze forth the death of princes.’
Now , despite the suffering that continues because of the Corona virus , we know that the comet can be enjoyed as an example of God’ s amazing creation. The Bible has no definite references to comets but Jude v 13 refers to :
‘ wandering stars , for whom the deepest darkness has been reserved for ever’
Here the reference would seem to be to those who distract Christians from the true Word of God. They may appear convincing and blaze for a while but, like comets that brighten close to the Sun will ultimately return to darkness.
A more positive possible comet reference is found in Matthew, chapter 2 : 1-12, the Star of Bethlehem!
This is not something we normally consider in July but the birth of Jesus is as relevant now as at Christmas. A comet is but one of the possible explanations for the Star, but whatever it was, it brought the hope that continues today.
Thank-you Lord for your incredible Creation , may we never forget how fortunate we are to be living in it.