“Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, and meted out heaven with the span, and comprehended the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed the mountains in scales, and the hills in a balance?” (Isaiah 40:12)
The answer to this rhetorical question can only be God, the divine Designer of all the intricate interrelationships of His great creation. Four of the disciplines of natural science are implied here, and in each case a key principle of that science is anticipated.
The emphasis is on the precision of the divinely allocated quantities of each component. First, there is the precise balance of the waters of the earth between the oceans, rivers, groundwater, and atmospheric waters. Hydrology is the science of Earth’s waters, and life on Earth is dependent on the fine-tuning of the components of the hydrologic cycle. “He looketh to the ends of the earth….To make the weight for the winds; and he weigheth the waters by measure” (Job 28:24-25).
The atmospheric heaven also has been carefully dimensioned in size and composition to make life possible, as formulated in the science of meteorology.
The “dust of the earth” is nothing less than the basic chemical elements out of which all things are made. The accuracy with which elements combine with each other is based on their valences, and all of this is involved in the study of chemistry. The principle of isostasy (“equal weights”) is the fundamental principle of the science of geophysics, involving the weights of mountains and hills, continents, and ocean basins.
God does not deal in chance and caprice, even with inanimate physical systems such as mountains and waters. Not even a sparrow can “fall on the ground without your Father” (Matthew 10:29). HMM