Then said he unto them, Therefore every scribe which is instructed unto the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which bringeth forth out of his treasure things new and old.(Matthew 13:52) KJV
“Worlds in Collision” is the title of a book by Immanuel Velikovsky in which he proposes, among other things, that the plagues of the Exodus were caused by successive close approaches to Earth by the planet Venus.
His idea was that Venus was originally a comet. Velikovsky was the first to help us (that’s me and the Holy Spirit) understand the role that astronomy has to play when we harmonize the Bible with science. Fortunately there’s no need to deny any science, break any of the laws of physics, or appeal to conspiracies. It’s simply a matter of understanding the assumptions which have been made in interpreting our observations of the cosmos.
Velikovsky’s book “Worlds In Collision” is helpful because it’s divided into sections that deal with the possible role of the planet Venus in the plagues of the Exodus, and the activity of the planet Mars during the ministry of Isaiah. For us, a fan of SciFi and fantasy, who just happens to have a passion for the Bible, it was perfect.
It didn’t take us long to realize that making the case for a Geocentrospheric system was going to need a way to account for observable phenomena for which the explanations have been derived by assuming heliocentricity first. A specific example, which used to come up a lot in Twitter arguments about heliocentricity, is the retrograde motion of Mars. What is retrograde motion? Why does it matter?
Back in the early 2000s, while we were at Calvary baptist Church in Carrboro, NC, we plotted an orbit for the planet Mars on a piece of paper with a compass and a ruler. It needed an epicycle in it. We figured this out before we knew what an epicycle was. It made perfect sense to us, but we needed to understand what the difference between retrograde motion and epicycles was in technical terms.
We needed a book that would explain to us how popular science (SciPop) accounts for epicycles by using retrograde motion. Epicycles and retrograde motion are two ways to explain the same thing, the difference being frame of reference. There’s a cool story about how we got the book that we needed which can only have been a miracle.
How did we get our copy of the National Geographic Picture Atlas of the Universe? It was a miracle.
Retrograde motion is the path that Mars would plot as seen from the frame of reference of the sun. We’re not on the sun, we’re on the Earth. We don’t observe retrograde motion, from our frame of reference on Earth we observe an epicycle.
Having this in mind, while pondering the source of sediment which buried billions of fish in Noah’s flood, lead to one of those penny-drop moments which can only be the work of the Holy Spirit. What if the some of the sediment under which the Earth was buried in Noah’s flood came from Mars when it was on a close approach to the Earth? This is Hypothesis 4.
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