When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon, and the stars, which thou has ordained; What is man, that thou art mindful of him?
(Psalm 8:3-4, KJV)
Compare a man with space, endless space. Suppose we take our man and place him here, on a square foot of ground. Then we travel away two or three mile, and he fades from sight, unless our eyes are extra good. We go on a hundred miles, and the whole hill upon which he stands fades from view. Suppose we leave the earth and go as far as the moon. A million horizons have appeared and vanished since we began our journey into space.
From the moon, lakes, rivers, mountains, all fade away, and we see a disk of light somewhat larger than the moon looks to us from Earth. This disc is covered with fantastic shadows, which mark the continents, and with spaces, where the oceans keep up their eternal surge. Where is our man in all those vast distances, amid those lights and shadows?
Suppose we ascend from the moon and go as far as the sun. The earth is now a tiny globe, and the moon a speck above it. We go on farther, toward the center of our galaxy. One after another the planets move toward each other, until at last they disappear into the embrace of the sun. Where, in the midst of that tiny speck of light far away, is the man whom we left behind us?
But farther still we travel to other island galaxies. The sun, with all the millions of other suns in this system, coalesce into a dim blob of light in the far heavens. Where, in the midst of all the grandeur of these suns and stars and systems, is the human mote that we left behind us? Compared with the universe, what is man? He is nothing…..
Suppose we measure man by spiritual law….He is helpless, for “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23,KJV). “Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap” (Galatians 6:7, KJV). The eyes of spiritual law are never shut; they never wink at the wrong. Custom, expediency, etiquette–all these things are local; they depend upon the time and the place. But right is always right; wrong is always wrong….
“Behold, what manner of love!” (1 John 3:1, KJV). When we see that, we shall see how much men are worth. All who give their lives to bless humanity, both physically and spiritually, need to look through the right end of the telescope; they need to know the worth of man. We can know it only when we behold the Man, when we look into the face of Christ.
– H.M.S. Richards Sr. (1894-1985) was founder of the Seventh-day Adventist radio broadcast, the Voice of Prophecy