Facts do not necessarily equal truth. To know something factually does not imply a knowledge of something truthfully. To quote a famous lion, “There is a deeper magic still.” Ever since the Copernican revolution, we have know that the earth revolves around the sun. This is a known fact. But does it tell us the truth? Is the truth of this universe that the earth just happens to be one of
nine eight planets spinning around an average size star in the midst of countless galaxies? Is the earth significant simply because it happens to be the one planet perfectly positioned in its orbit of the sun to sustain life? Maybe we moderns are more factually right, but the ancients were much more closer to the truth. The whole universe is geocentric in the sense that everything moves around and is focused upon this tiny little ball of earth we call Earth.
It was on this planet that God chose create living things. It was on this planet that God chose to place His image-bearers that they might overpopulate it with His glory. He created more stars than we can count, more planets than we can visit, and more strange phenomena than we can study. And all of it revolving around what He in His unfathomable power and wisdom is doing right here on the ground. It is to this place that God the Son clothed Himself in flesh and dwelt among us. The God of the celestial is also the God of the cross. The God who flung stars also felt splinters. And why did He suffer such humiliation? To redeem and restore this tiny planet for an eternity of joy and glory and worship.
We live in a modern era unlike any age in history with regard to knowledge and facts. We know more about the human body than the ancients ever imagined, but less about what it means to be human. We have figured out how to explore the far reaches of our galaxy, but have no idea why it even matters. Through modern medicine, we have learned how to live longer but fall far short in learning how to live better.
At the same time, it is true that we can fall into the other ditch of making our world the center of everything in an idolatrous way. Instead of working the ground, we worship it. Instead of discovering the wonders of the universe, we deconstruct them. As Christians we must be innocent as doves with regard to both errors and at the same time wise as serpents in our thinking about life in this world. “In the world, not of it” is more than a catchy slogan for a t-shirt. It means that we need to learn how to manage the facts of this world in a way that is consistent with the deeper truths of the Creator. We need to learn how to handle the things of this world with the hands of the King who rules over it. Jesus got His hands muddy, but He didn’t go around making messes (at least not the kind we tend to make). Where mud was made, eyes were opened. Where perfume was spilt, a savior was prepared for sacrifice. Where bread was broken, people went away fully satisfied. Where blood gushed out, everything was made clean.