Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of His hand, and meted out heaven with a span…? Isaiah 40:12 KJV

Who has measured the waters in the hollow of His hand, And marked off the heavens by the span…? Isaiah 40:12 NASB

Water! It is what has made life on earth possible. Scientists search the universe for any planet which has water as this planet has, which then holds for them, the hope of life existing there. Water is crucial for life to exist.

According to a recent study by the U. S. Geologic Survey, about 72% of the earth is covered by water, accounting for over 300 million cubic miles. The measurements are approximate. That is the best that men can do. The heavens, which scientists now speculate to be so vast that they are tempted to use the “infinite,” were all marked off by Him by stretching out His hand from thumb to little finger, the span of His hand.

Our God measured all the seas in the hollow of His hand.  He established the boundaries of our entire universe using just the span of His hand. The skeptic may cavil that God has no hands, failing to see the poetic imagery that the Spirit of God is employing. Theologians refer to this as anthropomorphism, the use of human characteristics in understanding non-human things. How else could we possibly begin to comprehend the greatness of God if we did not have these analogies?

Fast forward now from Isaiah’s day about 750 years: observe as this Creator, now incarnate among His own creation, moves to a well in Samaria. The One Who marked off the boundaries of the solar system with the span of His hand, crosses the boundary which the majority of Jews observed and now “must needs go through Samaria.” Watch closely as, weary with His journey, He sits upon a well. Listen in amazement as the One Who “measured the waters in the hollow of His hand,” speaks: “Give Me to drink!”

His was genuine physical thirst. He did not invent a reasonable excuse for encountering the woman of Samaria. And yet, though His thirst was real, He employed both His physical weariness and thirst for the blessing of another. Every circumstance, every encounter was always turned to the good of others! His is the only totally selfless life ever lived.

But move a few years beyond the scene of John 4. Come to Jerusalem, to a small hill outside the city. The same One Who marked off the boundaries of our universe is now accorded a small space of ground on “skull hill” where they erected a cross. The Creator Who measured out the 300 cubic miles of water to make life habitable upon earth is on a cross, deemed unworthy of the life He made possible. Listen again as we hear Him say, “I thirst.” No longer are we dealing in poetic language or anthropomorphisms. This was real and intense. This is grace beyond amazing!


In Job 38:11 God’s control of the seas is mentioned for another reason. What are some of the reasons God alludes to His greatness in the creation sphere? Think of some of the Psalms, as well as chapters in Job. Consider Acts 17 and Paul’s message in Athens.

Why are the writers of John 1, Colossians 1, and Hebrews 1 all very careful to ascribe creation power to the Lord Jesus Christ? Each chapter then links with His Creatorial power, His Cross.