Published January 10, 2012

Paul's Epistle...
"What God Sees"

"This is the captain speaking. We have reached cruising altitude of 32,000 feet. Enjoy your flight."

I enjoy air travel, although I don't get to do much of it. I love to sit by a window (not over the wing) so that I can see the landscape below (when it's clear).

There's plenty to see. Flying at night you can see the lights defining the boundaries and streets of cities and towns. You can see highways, the headlights of cars appearing as strings of slowly-moving illuminated pearls. You can see town squares and major buildings. During the day you can see the patchwork layout of fields, the majesty of mountains, the beauty of lakes as they capture and reflect glimmers from the sun.

The thought crossed my mind, "Is this what God sees as He looks down on earth? Is this, in some small way, a God's-eye view of His creation?"

Actually, no, it's not.

When I look down from the comfort of that window seat, I do, of course, see God's handiwork in nature. And, of course, so does God. But I've noticed something missing when I look down from a plane that has achieved any altitude at all. What's missing are the people. I don't see any people. I see things people made and the effects of their presence. But I don't see people. From that altitude, they're just too small –– too insignificant –– to be seen.

But that is not how God sees this world. When He looks down on planet earth, first and foremost he sees people. He sees you. He sees me. He sees each and every one of the seven billion-plus people who currently live on planet earth –– individually!

Consider the awesomeness of the universe. I get an e-mail newsletter each week which includes stunning new color photos from various telescopes that peer into the unknown, including Hubble and other space telescopes. Amazing beauty on a mega-scale! And God made it all. He cares for it all. But His attention is here.

Isaiah 45:18 tells us that God had one reason for making the world and everything in it: He "formed it to be inhabited." Creating mankind was the reason God first created everything else! Think about that. In Genesis 1, God created the earth, animals, vegetation and so forth, and called it all "good." But only after He created mankind did He declare His creation "very good" (verse 31).

David must have been pondering God's amazing love for mere mankind when he wrote Psalm 8: "When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have ordained, what is man that You are mindful of him, and the son of man that You visit him? For You have made him a little lower than the angels, and You have crowned him with glory and honor. You have made him to have dominion over the works of Your hands; You have put all things under his feet..." (verses 3-6). And again in Psalm 144: "Lord, what is man, that You take knowledge of him? Or the son of man, that You are mindful of him? Man is like a breath; his days are like a passing shadow" (verses 3,4).

How much does God really care for us? The most famous verse in the New Testament, John 3:16, still says it best: "For God so loved the world [meaning humanity] that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." God's love for you and me was so great that He sent His son to die to redeem us from the penalty of sin, which would be eternal separation from Him and eternal punishment. After all, God created mankind for fellowship with Himself. Sin broke that fellowship. Jesus' shed blood restored that fellowship with all who believe.

Who can fathom such love and such attention from the Creator Himself?

From God's perspective, you and I –– and each of the other seven billion people alive today –– are the most important things God has ever created. That's what He sees when He looks down on this world —— us!

Never, ever, sell yourself short. You, individually, have great worth to God. He'd die for you. In fact, in Christ, He did.

- Paul

This column first ran Nov. 7, 2006.  Population figures updated.
Comments on this? paul@thegospelgreats.com

Copyright 2012 Heil Enterprises. All rights reserved.

Return to the Archives Index page for more recent columns.