O Lord, how manifold are thy works - In this verse there are three propositions:
All abuse and waste of God's creatures are spoil and robbery on the property of the Creator. On this verse Mr. Ray has published an excellent work, entitled, "The Wisdom of God in the Creation," which the reader will do well, not only to consult, but carefully to read over and study.
O Lord, how manifold are thy works! - literally, “how many.” The reference is to the “number” and the “variety” of the works of God, and to the wisdom displayed in them all. The earth is not suited up merely for one class of inhabitants, but for an almost endless variety; and the wisdom of God is manifested alike in the number and in the variety. No one can estimate the “number” of beings God has made on the earth; no one can comprehend the richness of the variety. By day the air, the earth, the waters swarm with life - life struggling everywhere as if no placc was to be left unoccupied; even for the dark scenes of night countless numbers of beings have been created; and, in all this immensity of numbers, there is an endless variety. No two are alike. Individuality is everywhere preserved, and the mind is astonished and confounded alike at the numbers and the variety.
In wisdom hast thou made them all - That is, Thou hast adapted each and all to the different ends contemplated in their creation. Anyone of these beings shows the wisdom of God in its formation, and in its adaptations to the ends of its existence; how much more is that wisdom displayed in these countless numbers, and in this endless variety!
The earth is full of thy riches - Hebrew, “possessions.” So the Septuagint and the Vulgate. That is, these various objects thus created are regarded as the “possession” of God; or, they belong to him, as the property of a man belongs to himself. The psalmist says that this wealth or property abounds everywhere; the earth is full of it.
In no other way can the foundation of a true education be so firmly and surely laid. Yet even the child, as he comes in contact with nature, will see cause for perplexity. He cannot but recognize the working of antagonistic forces. It is here that nature needs an interpreter. Looking upon the evil manifest even in the natural world, all have the same sorrowful lesson to learn—“An enemy hath done this.” Matthew 13:28. Ed 101.1
Only in the light that shines from Calvary can nature's teaching be read aright. Through the story of Bethlehem and the cross let it be shown how good is to conquer evil, and how every blessing that comes to us is a gift of redemption. Ed 101.2
In brier and thorn, in thistle and tare, is represented the evil that blights and mars. In singing bird and opening blossom, in rain and sunshine, in summer breeze and gentle dew, in ten thousand objects in nature, from the oak of the forest to the violet that blossoms at its root, is seen the love that restores. And nature still speaks to us of God's goodness. Ed 101.3
“I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil.” Jeremiah 29:11. This is the message that, in the light from the cross, may be read upon all the face of nature. The heavens declare His glory, and the earth is full of His riches. Ed 101.4Read in context »
“His glory covered the heavens.”
“The earth is full of Thy riches.” MH 412.1
“Day unto day uttereth speech,
And night unto night showeth knowledge.
There is no speech nor language,
Without these their voice is heard.
Their line is gone out through all the earth,
And their words to the end of the world.” MH 412.2
Not even a sparrow falls to the ground without the Father's notice. Satan's hatred against God leads him to delight in destroying even the dumb creatures. It is only through God's protecting care that the birds are preserved to gladden us with their songs of joy. But He does not forget even the sparrows. “Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.” Matthew 10:31. 8T 273.1
“Bless Jehovah, O my soul.
O Jehovah my God, Thou art very great;
Thou art clothed with honor and majesty:
Who coverest Thyself with light as with a garment;
Who stretchest out the heavens like a curtain;
Who layeth the beams of His chambers in the waters;
Who maketh the clouds His chariot;
Who walketh upon the wings of the wind;
Who maketh winds His messengers;
Flames of fire His ministers; 8T 273.2
“Who laid the foundations of the earth,
That it should not be moved forever.
Thou coveredst it with the deep as with a vesture;
The waters stood above the mountains.
At Thy rebuke they fled;
At the voice of Thy thunder they hasted away
(The mountains rose, the valleys sank down)
Unto the place which Thou hadst founded for them.
Thou hast set a bound that they may not pass over;
That they turn not again to cover the earth. 8T 273.3