- 17th October 2018
- Christian Living
Most of us have picked up some sand between our fingers and observed how small and insignificant it looks. When we find some on the floor of our home, we don't value it but sweep it up and throw it out. But we can learn many interesting aspects from a grain of sand, which might surprise you.
We can ask the question, where do these grains come from and can they be useful? A long time ago, they may have been part of a large quartz rock or volcanic material that was broken down by the powerful forces of weather or action of natural events. These forces are continually occurring around us each day. Mankind has found many practical uses for different types of sand, such as in the manufacture of concrete for building materials, manufacture of glass and even for advanced technology where they have been used for active materials in concentrated solar power and high temperature thermal energy storage. When scientists recently had a closer look at a typical grain of sand, they discovered some surprising characteristics. Just like there are no two people on this earth who are identical in every way, there are no two grains of sand that are identical, to the finest detail, even though there are vast supplies of sand in deserts and on the sea shores around the world. The National Physics Laboratory in England has found some even more surprising characteristics in their studies. They calculated the total amount of energy locked up inside a typical single grain of sand, at the atomic level. They wrote, if all of this energy could be effectively released, “There is enough energy locked up in a grain of sand to boil 10,000,000 kettles” of water. Other independent scientists have arrived at similar conclusions. This is an enormous amount of energy. This means, in order to create one grain of sand at a basic atomic level, at least the same amount of energy would be required. From this study we realise that all physical matter, small and large, contains huge amounts of locked up energy. Now when we consider how many grains of sand and physical matter make up the planet we live on, our minds cannot grasp the enormity of the energy required to create it all. Perhaps one day, mankind may find a way of easily extracting this energy. If they could, then the energy needs of every nation could be fully satisfied. Now let’s look at what a typical single grain of sand can hide. Between 2003 and 2012 the Hubble space telescope was used to study a small portion of the night sky, equivalent to the area covered by a single grain of sand held at arm’s length, and deep field photographs were taken, spanning many days. The results were staggering. Scientists were surprised to discover 50,000 to 100,000 galaxies spread far out in the universe, just in that small area of the sky. Just one galaxy can contain millions of stars and planets. Scientists at National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) recently estimated that there could be 100 billion galaxies in the known universe, and as new telescopes are brought into action, possibly many times more than that number will be found. Our human mind cannot begin to grasp how much physical matter is contained in the physical universe and on top of that, how much energy was used to create all of it. Where did all this physical matter come from? Scientists have many theories. One of them is the Big Bang theory, which states that all galaxies and material in the whole universe began with a big bang approximately 13 billion of years ago. But where did all that energy come from, to start the big bang? Scientists are perplexed and cannot give a satisfactory answer. Now there is one source which provides definitive answers to this perplexing question. It can be found in the pages of a book which was written many thousands of years ago. The first verse of the Bible says, "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." (Genesis1:1) Here God is defined as the creator of the entire universe and the earth. The Creator God describes Himself in many verses of the Bible. Here is one example: “To whom then will you liken God? Or what likeness will you compare to Him? Have you not known? Have you not heard? Has it not been told you from the beginning? Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth? It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers, Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, and spreads them out like a tent to dwell in.” (Isaiah 40:18 to 22). God also explains that He is the One who began all things. His life span has neither beginning nor end of days. He has the power to create and set into motion all the powerful forces of nature. Many thousands of years ago, He revealed to mankind where all the complexity of life we see around us, the energy and physical matter, all originated. No scientist can answer those questions but they can be found in the pages of the Bible.