Beautiful. Gorgeous. Awesome. Amazing. Majestic. These and other descriptive words were exchanged by Norma Jean and me as we enjoyed the incredible scenery on our recent trip to Alaska.
But no doubt the most awe-inspiring, breath-taking, God-affirming sight was on our next to the last day when we saw Denali, formerly known at Mt. McKinley. It is the highest peak in North America, rising 20,310′ above sea level.
On the day of our tour deep into the park, it was cloudy, overcast and drizzling rain off and on all day. “The Great One” was shrouded from view. While we were disappointed, we had an enjoyable day.
However, the next day was a clear, sunny day. And on our trip back to Anchorage, there she was. Clearly in our view. Rising magnificently above the lower hills, kissing the sky. To me, there is just something about mountains that shouts Jehovah’s majesty and manifests the glory of His creation.
Several times in the Old testament the Bible writers speak of God’s majesty in connection with his creation. And especially with mountains. “You formed the mountains with your power and armed yourself with mighty strength,” penned the Psalmist. In another place he writes, “The mountains of Bashan are majestic, with many peaks stretching high into the sky.”
The prophet Isaiah said, “The majesty of Carmel and Sharon. They will see the glory of the Lord, The majesty of our God.”
In a Psalm of praise King David exclaimed, “On the glorious splendor of Your majesty And on Your wonderful works, I will meditate.”
Indeed I was reminded of the truth of the apostle Paul words, “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities — his eternal power and divine nature — have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.”
Creation cries “there is a Creator!” It didn’t just happen. It wasn’t an accident. It wasn’t the result of blind chance. The mountains shout, “There is a God!” And the splendor of Denali showcases The Almighty’s majesty.
There is more than one Hebrew word translated into our English word “majesty.” Together they speak of beauty. Glory. Honor. Power. Excellency. Dignity. Triumph. Splendor. These words described Jehovah God and the majestic world He created.
God has revealed himself in two books. The book of revelation, that we call the Bible. And the book of nature, of which Paul said declared God’s invisible qualities. His eternal power. His divine nature.
Chris Seidman expressed it this way, “God has made it possible for us to come to know Him through the visible and tangible things of our world. Have you ever looked at a sunset and been reminded of who’s really in charge in this world?”
“Have you ever gawked at majestic mountain peaks and been jerked back into the reality of how much bigger God is than you and your problems? Have you ever shaken your head at the brilliant lines, patterns and colors on the wings of a butterfly and contemplated the stunningly detailed imagination of the Creator? Then you’ve seen God’s glory and encountered the efforts of a Father longing to be recognized by His children.”
And yet I know the Psalmist was right that God is more majestic than Denali when he wrote, “You are glorious and more majestic than the everlasting mountains.” They are the natural evidence of who He is. The mountains proclaim God’s power. God’s might. God’s majesty. Indeed, Jehovah “holds in his hands the depths of the earth and the mightiest mountains.”
Our trip into this beautiful part of the world reminded us that “The Lord reigns, he is clothed with majesty.” Or to express it in the lyrics of the famous hymn by Maltbie Davenport Babcock,
This is my Father’s world,
and to my listening ears
all nature sings,
and round me rings
the music of the spheres.
This is my Father’s world:
I rest me in the thought
of rocks and trees,
of skies and seas;
his hand the wonders wrought.
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman