For our 5th Science Club lesson we learned that not only are there laws to govern our motion here on Earth but there are laws to govern Earth’s motion. Kepler; in the 17th Century, determined three laws that govern the way planets in our solar system orbit around the Sun.
The first law, often called the Law of Orbits says that planets orbit the Sun elliptically. Therefore, the shape of the path a planet takes around the Sun is more oval than circular. Simple enough.
The second law of planetary motion often referred to as the Law of Areas says that a line connecting the planet to the sun covers an equal area over an equal period of time. So in a period of say 30 days if you were to draw a pie shaped wedge between where the planet began, the Sun, and where the planet ended it would always be the same amount of area. Basically, when a planet is closer to the Sun in its orbit it will have a shorter fatter pie wedge and when it is farther away from the Sun it will have a long skinny pie wedge but each wedge is always equal in area. [See illustration]
The third and final law is the Law of Periods. This law deals with the time it takes for a planet to orbit the Sun based on its distance from the Sun. Simply put a planet such as Earth, being closer to the Sun orbits the Sun more often than a planet such as Neptune which is further away from the Sun. We call each orbit a year. But a year for Mercury is only 88 Earth days! Jupiter’s year is equal to almost 12 Earth years. Neptune’s year is almost 165 Earth years. Since the time of Neptune’s discovery we have not witnessed an entire orbit.
This brings me back to our theme for the summer of 2013…How Great is Our God?
I am amazed that He has created the universe and everything in it. Our God has ordered the very path and routine of the entire universe!
Job, speaking about God’s majesty says “He hangs the Earth on nothing… By His Spirit He adorned the heavens. ~ Job 26:7, 13
Not one planet, even Pluto who has been demoted, has ever gotten lost. Before we had the technology to see them they were predictable in their orbits. The area they travel can be measured and always found equal. And as it says in Job they hang on absolutely nothing!
We as human beings have been created in God’s own image. We have been placed on Earth where we can see the foundations we depend upon. We have always had the visual technology to see that God is faithful to bring the seasons, which are determined by our planet’s orbit are they not? Can we not then trust Him to guide our path? Could we allow Him to shed light on our future? Could we submit as the planets do to His leading, His commandments, and His instruction?
“If you love me, obey my commandments. ~ John 14:15
Trust in the LORD with all your heart;
do not depend on your own understanding.
Seek his will in all you do,
and he will show you which path to take. ~ Proverbs 3:5-6
Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.
I’ve promised it once, and I’ll promise it again:
I will obey your righteous regulations…
LORD … teach me your regulations.
… I will not stop obeying your instructions.
… I will not turn from your commandments.
Your laws are my treasure; they are my heart’s delight.
I am determined to keep your decrees to the very end. ~ Psalm 119:105-112
Even when it feels that my path is “hung on nothing” Lord help me choose to follow Your instructions!