On Sunday, September 9, we were granted to enjoy another Goedbericht-study day. Despite the beautiful weather, the room was filled with over a hundred interested individuals from all over the country. This time the theme was “heaven in the middle”, in which the Biblical world view was presented. Finally, the time for this presentation had arrived. Never before did I have the courage to expose my neck with this topic. For it is quite a thing to assert that heaven, God’s tent and throne, are not on the outside, but in the middle of the world. That puts our perspective of the world completely upside down. But it is this idea that forces itself on us, when we read Genesis 1. This is not only logical for whoever recognizes the central place which is the Creator’s due. It is also wonderful to see this illustrated in the typology of the tabernacle and in nature.
Obviously, the problem arises when we want to match this image with our familiar, trusted world view: a little globe that floats in an infinite universe. The photos of the earth seen from space, we all know. My laconic reaction during the seminar was: we apparently see the world inside-out. And that was no joke. The mathematical phenomenon of inversion is in fact a serious possibility for describing reality. Scientists of renown freely admit that the idea of heaven (space), that it is not outside, but inside the globe, is (as bizarre as it seems) irrefutable.
Following the seminar, I have received quite a few reactions, and a large number of them were about the phenomenon of inversion. How are we to envision an inverted (=turned inside-out) world? With some sense of mathematics it is, nevertheless, perfectly calculable, but it continues to challenge our imagination. However interesting such exercises may be, that’s not what it is about. It is not for nothing that God leaves us to see the world as we see it. My objective of the seminar was not a denial but a relativization of the observations of science. Science studies phenomena: appearances as they present themselves to our eyes. Man sees the outside. No problem, as long as we are aware of the fact that God looks on the heart, the inside (1Sam.16:7). God’s point of view is completely different: He sees the inside, heaven, His throne in the middle of the world.
Translation: Peter Feddema