God’s way. Appendix C3.

What the angels saw

This is a story. You won’t find this story in the Bible but it encapsulates the Bible. It is just my imagination, but it builds on many scriptures, as well as insights from Parts 2 and 3 of this book. ...This is what I want to leave you with when you close the book.


Introduction

God’s ways are too far above man’s ways. If I was God, I would have spelt everything out in black and white. Certainly, I have tried to describe every minute detail of what I saw in this book. I would never have trusted man to tease out all the prophetic and technical details, nor to figure out the mysteries and the deep things of God in the very brief Genesis account. But then, I am not God and I could never have realised the power of the Holy Spirit to reveal these mysteries at a time chosen by God. But the angels are more like us – finite beings, and what they saw is likely to be closer to what we can imagine.

The story from before time began

God the Father was walking by the crystal sea in heaven. His presence always drew the attention of the angels, but His intense, purposeful demeanour brought a stillness over everything. He came to a place where there was a small rock pool isolated from the main body of water. The angels noticed Him bend down and scoop up a handful of water from the pool. Just as surface tension draws water into round droplets, so the water formed a perfect spherical crystal in His hand, about the size of a tennis ball.

This was nothing surprising to the angels. When God spoke, amazing things happened – how much more so when He physically reached out with His own hand. But from His body language it was clear to the angels that something was stirring deep in God’s heart. What part did this small crystal have to play in what was unfolding? However there was no time to ponder on that – God now seemed very focused as He tucked the crystal into a fold of His garments and returned to the throne room.

The Father and the Son always worked in an effortless synchronism, and without a word being spoken Jesus was there waiting for Him. Often when God spoke, His words seemed to echo throughout heaven, but this time the angels could not hear what transpired. However they did see Jesus tremble a little, and then weep. Although the angels did not hear what was spoken, we know what was shared:

“Son, there is no suitable bride for you here in heaven. I will create a people for you. They will be like us, with the freedom to love us. But they will reject us. At the right time you must leave me and become mortal like them so that you can redeem your bride. You will manifest me to them, but again they will reject you. But if you trust in me to the end I will restore you to my side and you will become the way for all who believe in you to be saved. You will present your bride to me and they will be my children.”

As the Father and the Son held the crystal ball between them, a tangible aroma of joy and anticipation filled the room; something the angels had never before experienced. Try to imagine yourself up on a satellite with a camera picturing the earth below. Then zoom down deeper and deeper, passing through the atmosphere and seeing the continents come up, then mountains and trees until finally even the headlines of a newspaper can be read. The entire focus of heaven was centred on this crystal ball in the palm of God’s hand.

Let there be light
Let there be light.
Droplets of light started to stream from the surface of the ball in all directions. It was like seeing the stars zoom past at the beginning of a Star Trek episode. But the angels realised that what they were seeing was not unfolding in heaven – it was the creation of a new realm or dimension. It seemed to defy explanation – were these lights flying outwards or was it simply that their view was zooming in? As the angels watched, they began to feel as if they were riding a wave of creative power that was surging deeper and deeper into this new realm.

The angels were mesmerised as this new realm appeared because it seemed to capture in its physical majesty some of the majesty of God Himself. When the angels turned to watch these splashes of light stream away, they saw each one expanding into a galaxy of stars. Each one was unique. I could just imagine looking at it as I watched a small droplet of shaving foam expand in my hand. But what the angels could not see, just as I cannot see, is that God was aware as each droplet gave birth to a myriad of stars and then the stars gave birth to planets and then the planets gave birth to moons. There was a glorious overall order to it, yet every instance, every galaxy, star and planet was unique.

The crystal ball slowly reduced in size until there was just one droplet left. It expanded into this galaxy – the one we call the Milky Way. It had been almost overwhelming as the angels watched on, but God was not yet finished. The focus of heaven continued to zoom in until a small blue, water-covered planet was before them. Surely that was it – God’s focus had not wavered all day, but now He just paused, watching this small planet turn completely on its axis. The angels could feel His sense of satisfaction – it was just as He intended, and it was clear that this tiny planet held the key and purpose behind the creation of the entire universe. What on earth, literally, would happen next to justify the creation of this magnificent universe?

The angels noticed that Jesus was getting more and more excited as He completely transformed this planet over the next few days: the beautiful atmosphere that made each day on its surface appear differently; the dry land and the extraordinary array of plant life. The diversity and intricacy of it all was beyond the angels’ comprehension and it just caused them to marvel at what was unfolding.

The initial appearance of all the galaxies and stars had been amazing, but now they seemed to take on a new and more dazzling form as they watched from this small planet. The angels could barely cope with the diversity of plant life and then they were blown away with the living creatures that God made to dwell in the sea and the air and on the land. But God’s final step was puzzling. He made man, male and female, a creature that looked like the angels. It puzzled the angels because this creature, though similar in form to them, was so frail in its mortal existence, and yet God had made this creature superior to the other creatures on the earth. Oh well, God was pleased and set His work aside to rest.

The intensity of His work that week had preoccupied all the heavenly hosts. The Father and the Son had not broken their attention from this new world and the angels had been entranced by all that was happening. But now the angels could relax and rejoice in the splendour of God. The constancy and unsurpassed majesty and glory of God Himself quelled all concerns about what was happening or going to happen. God was sovereign. The angels needed this break to prepare them for what was coming next.

God rose from His rest and looked again upon this one planet. He formed a special man on the surface of the earth. This man was not just a look-a-like, but was endowed by God with a spirit – not as the angels were endowed, but with a spirit from God Himself. Wow, this was something new! A mortal creature with an immortal spirit – a spiritual man. Everything seemed special for this man – even a specially prepared garden. What was God up to? Clearly God was preparing this man for higher things. Michael and Gabrielle, highest amongst the angels and often given special tasks by God, looked on as God spent intimate one-on-one time with Adam. God personally showed Adam around the garden and the surrounding regions. God had never asked Michael or Gabrielle to name anything, but now God allowed Adam to name all the creatures God had made.

And yet God wanted a more special companion for Adam – someone that was like him, as he was like God; someone of his own flesh and spirit. Hardly an angel breathed as they watched God create a woman from Adam and present her to Adam. Adam called her Eve, but excited as he was, Adam did not grasp the immensity of what had just happened. But the angels in heaven knew. Had God made a mistake? How could this be? Everything in heaven that was eternal had been created by God, and certainly Adam and Eve were created by God and given an eternal spirit. But Adam and Eve were given the ability to reproduce after their kind, and their kind also had an eternal spirit! Adam and Eve and their descendants could create beings in their likeness, beings with an eternal spirit. God also gave them the freedom to choose or reject Him, because love demanded freedom. God had made them sovereign in this earthly realm!

Then the angels looked at Jesus and saw Him smiling. The Holy Spirit beamed the word to all the heavenly hosts. Here was the bride of Christ ... the sons of God! The angels suddenly understood and great rejoicing broke out in heaven.


The story is over

I saw what God had done and how all that He had created now took on its divine purpose. But I could not bear to continue because I knew the grief that I would feel as the angels looked down and saw what we did, and how we betrayed all that God had prepared for us. If I felt I could understand what the angels might have thought, I knew that I couldn’t possibly understand God’s perspective. How did He persevere with us so long, holding out His hands all day long to a stubborn an obstinate people? How did He continue to show mercy when we deserved His anger? I knew the right answers and the words to cast them in, but all I felt was grief.

I understood why Jesus wept when God revealed what it would cost as they held that crystal ball between them, even before time began. The Father exhausted all options and then His Son, at the time they both knew must come, took on the likeness of mortal flesh to redeem His bride.


Selah
Stop and exalt God – pause with this thought:
The son of God came to redeem His bride.


A few years later

A few years went by and I am still touched when I read this. I showed it to some friends and it’s OK for them, but does not touch them the way I see it. So perhaps it’s just OK for you as well. Perhaps my words fail to convey my experience. But maybe I can string together a few more words to help you see what I saw.

The creation account is very factual. The only slightly emotive statement is God’s declarations that it was good. But now I had a picture that revealed the heart and purposes of God being unveiled during creation. It naturally built to this massive high as the Holy Spirit announced the bride of Christ – the sons of God. But then, like a rollercoaster, there was that massive low as we rejected God. Perhaps I felt some of the sorrow that the angels might have felt for Jesus, to see His bride turn away so quickly.

To me, the creation account is no longer an objective picture of what happened. I see below it. Perhaps this was never a picture we could see until Jesus manifested the love of God to us on the Cross. But I also have this new picture where the creative power of God spread those droplets of light through the universe from the outside in. It was a glorious implosion of space–time, not an explosion. Each droplet expanded into its own galaxy. Similarly, the stars expanded, giving rise to planets and planets to moons. It was never just chaotic clouds of gas collapsing, but rather a creative expansion.

Later, I was intrigued by how simply the known physical properties of things like black holes and event horizons could be combined to give a physical model, that is, something that an observer in this universe might see. I have left that in Appendix C4, “The COI Universe”, for those keen enough to follow it up. There are some interesting insights about the way science interprets a one off event.

This story, as seen by the angels, helps to visualise the creation of the universe, and is consistent with the creation account; at least my take on it. But this story did not unfold like that. I found myself describing the Father and the Son before time began. It is the image of Jesus with His Father, knowing before the beginning of time what was about to unfold – that is the jewel in this story.


–› Appendicies