Thursday, June 14, 2007


wIj qa' SovtaH vetlh very QaQ.
My soul knows that very well.
(click for podcast version)

What do you KNOW? Some might start with simple unencumbered facts -arithmetic, geometry and the like. Others might recite details of their personal narrative - the history they know first hand.

In law there is a measure "beyond a reasonable doubt," that ascribes reliability to conclusions. It is the kind of certainty we want when matters of life and death are under consideration. It is that SOLID assurance that this psalm brings us here. But about WHAT is the author so certain?

Here in the middle of Psalm 139 the psalmist brings us the miracle of life - the power of God's creativity at work.

For you formed my inmost being. You knit me together in my mother's womb. I will give thanks to you, For I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Your works are wonderful. My soul knows that very well. My frame wasn't hidden from you, When I was made in secret, Woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my body. In your book they were all written, The days that were ordained for me, When as yet there were none of them. How precious to me are your thoughts, God! How vast is the sum of them!
Psalms 139:13-17 WEB

In this description the author catches his breath to say My soul knows that very well. / wIj qa' SovtaH vetlh very QaQ.

My SOUL, or nephesh in Hebrew is rendered with qa', the Klingon word for "spirit." For a Klingon this spirit is that which battle nourishes (the saying is : qa' wIje'meH maSuv. - We fight to enrich the spirit.). The Biblical language is a bit different - in Hebrew the soul - life - is "that which breathes," since obviously when we cease to breath, we cease to live.

As we think about the relam of knowledge, we see that today science seems to tread on God's creative prerogative. From lifelike robots, to artificial life - it might seem that God's majesty is less significant - "we can do THAT ourselves."

Yet, to the person of faith it is quite the opposite. The more details we know of genetics or cosmology - the more we marvel at what God HAS DONE. In creation, in our lives he IS AT WORK - even when we don't see it.

What do you KNOW - REALLY know?

We know the details of our lives. We may master our jobs, the tasks that we do every day.

But what makes us say

wIj qa' SovtaH vetlh very QaQ.
My soul knows that very well?

As I reflect on my life and God's word, it's my prayer that what I really know is not some collection of facts, but that I know God.

As the prophet Jeremiah tells us:

This is what the LORD says: “Let not the wise man gloat in his wisdom, or the mighty man in his might, or the rich man in his riches. Let them boast in this alone: that they truly know me and understand that I am the LORD who is just and righteous, whose love is unfailing, and that I delight in these things. I, the LORD, have spoken! Jeremiah 9:23,24 NLT

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