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Johannes Kepler on Mathematics, Astronomy, Harmony and Worship

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Johannes Kepler on Mathematics, Astronomy, Harmony and Worship
As I’m working on a writing project this week, I have been reading through some of Johannes Kepler‘s book, Harmonices Mundi (Harmonies of the World) (1619).
 
Kepler was discussing a fascinating correlation he discovered between the interdependence of planetary motion, geometry, and musical harmony. Admittedly, I am, intellectually, to Kepler what a paper airplane is to a fighter jet. So many of the details of his discoveries are way over my head. However, what struck me is what happened to Kepler at the very end of this essay.
 
He was so overcome by the beauty and precision of the obviously created universe that he burst into spontaneous worship, thinking about how he (and us) should then live in light of the knowledge that God has made all things for His glory.

“While I struggle to bring forth this process into the light of human intellect by means of the elementary form customary with geometers, may the Author of the heavens be favourable, the Father of intellects, the Bestower of mortal senses, Himself immortal and superblessed, and may He prevent the darkness of our mind from bringing forth in this work anything unworthy of His Majesty, and may He effect that we, the imitators of God by the help of the Holy Ghost, should rival the perfection of His works in sanctity of life, for which He choose His church throughout the Earth and, by the blood of His Son, cleansed it from sins, and that we should keep at a distance all the discords of enmity, all contentions, rivalries, anger, quarrels, dissensions, sects, envy, provocations, and irritations arising through mocking speech and the other works of the flesh; and that along with myself, all who possess the spirit of Christ will not only desire but will also strive by deeds to express and make sure their calling, by spurning all crooked morals of all kinds which have been veiled and painted over with the cloak of zeal or of the love of truth or of singular erudition or modesty over against contentious teachers, or with any other showy garment. Holy Father, keep us safe in the concord of our love for one another, that we may be one, just as Thou art one with They Son, Our Lord, and with the Holy Ghost, and just as through the sweetest bonds of harmonies Thou hast made all Thy works one; and that from the bringing of Thy people into concord the body of Thy Church may be built up in the Earth, as Thou didst erect the heavens themselves out of harmonies.”

“Accordingly let this do for our envoi concerning the work of God the Creator. It now remains that at last, with my eyes and hands removed from the tablet of demonstrations and lifted up towards the heavens, I should pray, devout and supplicating, to the Father of lights: O Thou Who dost by the light of nature promote in us the desire for the light of grace, that by its means Thou mayest transport us into the light of glory, I give thanks to Thee, O Lord Creator, Who hast delighted me with Thy makings and in the works of Thy hands have I exulted. Behold! now, I have completed the work of my profession, having employed as much power of mind as Thou didst give to me; to the men who are going to read those demonstrations I have made manifest the glory of Thy works, as much of its infinity as the narrows of my intellect could apprehend. My mind has been given over to philosophizing most correctly: if there is anything unworthy of Thy designs brought forth by me—a worm born and nourished in a wallowing place of sins—breathe into me also that which Thou dost wish men to know, that I may make the correction: If I have been allured into rashness by the wonderful beauty of Thy works, or if I have loved my own glory among men, while I am advancing in the work destined for Thy glory, be gentle and merciful and pardon me; and finally deign graciously to effect that these demonstrations give way to Thy glory and the salvation of souls and nowhere be an obstacle to that.”

If your child’s textbooks and education don’t point him or her toward spontaneous worship at the majesty of Christ and His creation, then you are doing it wrong, and you need to throw out your curriculum and get a new one!

Israel Wayne is an Author and Conference Speaker and the Director of Family Renewal, LLC. He is author of the book, Questions God Asks: Unlocking the Wisdom of Eternity. He is also the Site Editor for www.ChristianWorldview.net.

2 Responses to “Johannes Kepler on Mathematics, Astronomy, Harmony and Worship”

  1. caitlin says:

    Israel-
    We are going through some paradigm shifts on education at our home, and looking to get rid of a lot of our curriculum that we have purchased in trying home educate. As we look more into educating the soul to know, love and pursue God and His ways- Do you have a high school curriculum you would recommend? (that does what you say? Point them to spontaneous worship at the majesty of the creator?) I have heard Brooke mention in a podcast that she likes Math Made Meaningful for the younger ones- would you guys be able to share what you have found to be Biblical choices in school material for older ones? Thank you so much!

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© Israel Wayne.