“Only knowledge from above can Move us forward.”
On Christopher Columbus’ fourth voyage to New World in 1503, he and his crew became stranded on island of Jamaica. Columbus’ food supply was almost gone, and his ship was too badly damaged to repair [worms had eaten through wooden hull].
At first, Jamaicans gave Columbus and his crew food and supplies. When Columbus and his crew were not rescued after many months, Jamaicans finally refused to give them any additional food.
Columbus did not want his crew to starve, so he came up with a plan. Columbus could tell from his navigational tables that there would be a total lunar eclipse on February 29, 1504. He decided to schedule a meeting with Jamaicans for that night.
At meeting, Columbus told Jamaicans that God was not happy about how they were treating him and his crew, so God was going to take away Moon as a sign of his unhappiness! After Columbus told this to them, lunar eclipse began. This terrified Jamaicans! They pleaded with Columbus to bring back Moon, and they said he could have all food he wanted.
Columbus told them that he would have to go talk to God. Instead, he snuck away to watch an hourglass that he had timed so he would know exactly when eclipse would end. Right before lunar eclipse ended, Columbus returned and told Jamaicans that God would give back Moon. And, of course, Moon reappeared.
The Jamaicans gave food and supplies to Columbus and his crew until they were rescued and returned to Europe. I guess one could say that knowledge from above or about “above” is a good thing to have.
I find it very interesting that Bible declares from beginning that God created lights in sky. The greater light refers, of course, to sun. The lesser, on other hand, refers to moon. What I want to say is this: It wasn’t until man became knowledgeable of cosmos that he began to make strides forward in religion, philosophy, science, literature, and discovery. So pardon pun, but it’s true. Knowledge from above can move us forward. Let me explain, please.
Before Nicolaus Copernicus (1473-1543) defied teachings of Roman Catholic Church by saying that earth moves around sun (the church believed that earth was center of universe and sun and stars revolved around it), he was risking his life.
But Copernicus was not afraid to speak out about his knowledge of heavens, and world of modern science owes him a debt of gratitude (Copernicus was a scientist and devout Christian). At time, government and religious officials did not encourage original thought for fear that new ideas would create unrest. So, a free thinker like Copernicus had to come along with his knowledge of stars in order to move us forward in our thinking.