Water Above the Firmament
A BIBLE STUDY OF THE WATERS THAT ARE ABOVE THE HEAVENS
Genesis 1:6-8,14-17, “And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven. And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night…And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so. And God made two great lights; the greater to rule the day, and the lesser to rule the night: he made the stars also. And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth.”
Psalm 148: 4, “Praise him, ye heavens of heavens, and ye waters that be above the heavens.”
(all italicized words are for emphasis)
These verses in Genesis and Psalms show that there is a body of water above the heavens. The heavens are described in Genesis 1:14-17 as the place where God placed the sun, moon and stars. This body of water is between the heavens (outer space) and the specific place called Heaven, where the New Jerusalem is.
This water is above the heavens. According to Genesis, there was originally just water, then God created the heavens (the firmament) which separated the water. Then God gathered the water under the heavens into one place (Gen. 1:9), that place being planet earth. He then had the dry land appear. From the verses it shows that the water came first and then the dry land. We know all about the waters under the heavens, which are the oceans on the earth. But we know very little about the water above the heavens. Apparently we pass through this water when we die, right before we arrive at the place called Heaven.
Psalm 148:4 mentions the “waters that be above the heavens.” Notice the context. Verse 1 speaks of those in the heavens praising the Lord. That can only be from the place called Heaven. Verse 2 mentions angels and hosts, which are also in the place called Heaven. All these are above the heavens where the sun, moon and stars are. Then verse 3 mentions the sun, moon and stars, which are in the heavens (outer space), and then verse 4 mentions the waters which are above the heavens. It is clear from the context that the waters it mentions are above the heavens where the sun, moon and stars are.
We can also learn theology about the water above the heavens from Christian hymns. The following are some of the many hymns that mention this body of water. The title of the hymn is listed, followed by the stanza or chorus where the water is described.
I Will Sing the Wondrous Story
Stanza 5 – “He will keep me till the river rolls it’s waters at
my feet. Then He’ll bear me safely over”
Chorus – “Sing it with the saints in glory, gathered by the
Victory in Jesus
Stanza 3 – “And I heard about the streets of gold beyond the
Love Lifted Me
Stanza 1 – “I was sinking deep in sin, far from the peaceful
Sweet By and By
Stanza 2 – “We shall sing on that beautiful shore”
Chorus – “In the sweet by and by, we shall meet on that
When the Roll is Called Up Yonder
Stanza 1 – “When the saved of earth shall gather over on the
O That Will Be Glory
Stanza 1 – “When all my labors and trials are o’er, and I am
safe on that beautiful shore.”
My Saviour First of All
Stanza 1 – “When my life work is ended and I cross the
Meet Me There
Chorus – “When the storms of life are o’er, on the happy
What a Day That Will Be
Stanza 1 – “All is peace forevermore, on that happy golden
Near the Cross
Stanza 4 – “Just beyond the river.”
Chorus – “Till my raptured soul shall find, rest beyond the
Draw Me Nearer
Stanza 2 – “Till I cross the narrow sea.”
Stanza 2 – “I’m looking now across the river, where my faith
will end in sight.”
Crystal sea, beautiful shore, golden shore, swelling tide, river, etc. These are all terms that describe water. The writers of these songs knew about the waters above the heavens. They read it in the Bible, or they heard it from a Preacher or Evangelist. Each one, touched by the Holy Spirit, wrote about the water in a song. Many songs. More than are shown here.
Notice the song Victory in Jesus says “…the streets of gold beyond the crystal sea.” In other words, you have to cross the crystal sea to get to the streets of gold. In the song Love Lifted Me it says that when you are in sin, you are far from the shore of that body of water. Many of the songs speak of crossing the sea, the river or the tide. The songs verify what the Bible says – that there is a body of water above the heavens that one must go through to get to the actual place called Heaven.