Reflections: So you’d like to go to the moon!

January 3, 2019

by Roger Campbell Ministries

An e-mail from a longtime friend puzzled me.  He’s convinced that during a mid-sixties sermon he heard me say that, according to the Bible, we would never reach the moon.  While pleased he remembered the sermon, I was concerned about his memory of a statement that wasn’t in it, especially since he seemed to be allowing this misconception to bolster his unbelief.

What could I do to convince my friend of the truth after fifty years of error?  How could I help him achieve accurate recall when he had been focusing on a mistaken conclusion for so long?

My first thought was to flee to my file of sermons for proof but even this presented a problem: I do almost all of my speaking from outlines, seldom writing out an entire sermon and I was sure an outline would never satisfy this brilliant mind.  He would insist on proof.  Still, having no other place to turn, I pulled out a file drawer and reached for a folder labeled “Miscellaneous Sermons,” hoping for the best.

To my delight, I was soon reading my fifty year old sermon, “SO YOU’D LIKE TO GO TO THE MOON” in full text.  I was especially pleased to find it free from the claim of my e-mailing friend.  What could have caused this glitch in his grasping the point of my sermon?

The answer to that important question may rest in my introduction to the topic.  Jean Peterson, a Detroit Free Press Science writer of that era had written an article listing several obstacles to reaching the moon, which I quoted to set the scene for what I wanted to say. Perhaps my young listener concluded I felt these were too difficult to overcome, ruling out a successful trip to the moon.

Some momentary diversion may then have caused him to miss the following important line in the sermon:  “Yes, there are many obstacles to a trip to the moon but now, just for the sake of those who care, let us suppose that all of these problems are solved.”

This transition line allowed me to invite my hearers on an imaginary seven day trip to the moon where they would learn that God and certain basics of life are the same no matter where we may find ourselves.

Colonel Jeffrey Williams is an astronaut who at one time held the record for most days spent in space.  Having once walked in space for six hours, Col. Williams has spoken out about that space walk, sharing how this experience affected his faith.
“In orbit you view Earth and the vastness of space,” Col. Williams explained, [and see that] “we are an infinitesimal speck in light of the Creator Himself,” adding, “My experience in space only amplified my belief in the Creator.”  He also emphasized that he has a personal relationship with God, enabling him to “focus on His closeness.”

The Psalmist expressed the same feelings, writing: “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?” (Psalm 8:3-4).

Yet he also wrote: “The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.” (Psalm 23:1).

Wherever we are, our Creator God cares about us!  We should be quick to reconcile any misunderstanding that feeds doubt and keeps us from responding to His love.

Roger Campbell was an author, a broadcaster and columnist who was a pastor for 22 years.  A new book containing over one hundred of his best columns, “Everywhere You Go There’s a Zacchaeus Up a Tree,” is now available at your local or online bookseller.  Contact us at rcministry@ameritech.net

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