A recent publication in the journal Nature titled “Night-vision ‘super-mice’ created using light-converting nanoparticles” (Nature 567, 16-17 (2019)) highlights how scientists engineered mice to see in the infrared region as normally as mammals see visible light. Scientists achieved this by injecting rodent eyes with nanoparticles that bind to the photoreceptors in the eyes and convert the infrared wavelengths to visible light. Mammals, like humans, are unable to see infrared light (700 nm – 1000 nm region). In this research, the the nanoparticles that were developed convert infrared wavelengths to 980 nm which corresponds to green light. This allowed the mice to have a night-vision of a sort seeing in different shades of green. A few years ago, previously, researchers attached sensors directly to the brain of rodents (Hartmann, K. et al. J. Neurosci. 36, 2406–2424 (2016)) but this allowed the mice to only find the source of the infrared light, as opposed to more complex tasks as in the nanoparticle application. The practical application for this technology today for humans is astronomical in the ability to augment human vision. Some of the drawbacks however is that the nanoparticles are composed of heavy metals which poses a problem for toxicology. Because of this, researchers are working on an organic version of the infrared to light technique. The way researchers determined the effectiveness of the nanoparticle technique was by testing the rodents in various ways, a mouse being able to choose the correct course of action in the dark led to the researchers conclusion of success. The real question however is how this would affect the human eye and how people would interpret the images. There are a lot of questions to be answered, and it will be many years before human trials would even be possible.
The Spiritual insight that we get from this type of research is on the question of “How deep is the rabbit hole?” Rabbi Abraham Heschel described this in the following way:
God In Search Of Man, Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel
The word Torah is used in two senses; the supernal (heavenly) Torah, the existence which preceded the creation of the world, and the revealed (earthly) Torah. Concerning the supernal Torah the Rabbis maintained: “The Torah is hidden from the eye of all living…Man knows not the price thereof.” “Moses received Torah” but not all of the Torah “at Sinai.” And not all that was revealed to Moses was conveyed to Israel; the meaning of the commandments is given as an example. Together with the gratitude for the word that was disclosed, there is a yearning for the meaning yet to be disclosed. There is a theory in Jewish literature… which maintains that the Torah, which is eternal in spirit, assumes different forms in various eons. The Torah was known to Adam when was in the Garden of Eden, although not in its present form. Commandments such as those concerning charity to the poor, the stranger, the orphan, and the widow, would have been meaningless in the Garden of Eden. In that eon the Torah was known in its spiritual form. Just as man assumed a material form when he was driven out of the Garden of Eden, so has the Torah assumed a material form. If man had retained “the garments of light” his spiritual form of existence, the Torah, too, would have retained its spiritual form.
Rabbi Abraham Heschel describes the supernatural world in relation to God’s Torah. He says that there are two senses on the use of the word תורה (Torah) a supernatural (heavenly) and a revealed (earthly). He also says there are two sense to man, a spiritual and a physical. Sin draws us into the physical world, and righteousness, God’s Word draws us into the spiritual world. The rabbis maintain “The Torah is hidden from the eye of all the living.” It is God who has revealed His Torah, His ways, His life giving Word unto all the world. The commentary states that in the midst of the revealed word, there was a yearning for more, for the eternal God, and it is only by the power of God that truth and life are revealed to men. In the Scriptures, we are told that we have not been as wise as serpents and have underestimated the enemy. It is time to wake up and see this war that we are in exactly for what it is. There is an enemy in the spirit realm, and only by being a child of the Most High God are we able to discern what is happening in our world today! The enemy and his minions have stormed the battlefield with vigor to try and establish an elusive victory. We have however victory over the spiritual forces that stand against us.
The truth about this world is that the spiritual war we are in is hidden from the world. An example may be taken from the Tanach is from to 2 Kings 6:15-17. Here the prophet Elisha’s attendant saw something in the visible realm that overwhelmed him, the Syrian army encircling their city with horses and chariots. His servant says, “Alas, my master! What shall we do?” Elisha was not shaken. He saw a deeper reality in the unseen realm. We read the following according to 2 Kings 6:15-17:
2 Kings 6:15-17
“Do not fear, for those who are with us are more than those who are with them. Elisha then prayed and said, “O Lord, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.” And the Lord opened the servant’s eyes and he saw. And behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.”
Elisha saw something his servant did not see: the enemies of God surrounding the city were themselves surrounded by a massive invisible force arrayed behind the scenes for Elisha’s protection. God had given the prophet the ability to see the unseen. Through prayer the spirit realm was revealed to Elisha’s servant. It is also through prayer that the underlying spiritual forces are revealed to us in this present world. The Apostle Paul also writes to the Ephesians speaking of the reality of the opposition in the spiritual realm in the following way.
6:11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. 6:12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. 6:13 Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. (NASB)
In this text, Paul tells us that we are at war. He acknowledges the reality of opposition in the visible world (“flesh and blood”), but instructs us that the more influential conflict is at a deeper level in what he calls the invisible realm (“the heavenly places”). So when we see in the media or on television, or in congress, or in the local, national, and world news, the murder of the unborn up to the moment of birth (from conception to third trimester) or laws being passed for the protected classes such as Islam, or LGBT propaganda and laws to infringe upon our rights as conservatives, this should tip us off to the enemies operating strategy. We need to kneel down and pray because these are the devil’s tactical maneuvers, designed to deceive even the elect, those who are called by the Name of God Most High. Being clothed with the proper armor allows us to stand firm against the schemes of the evil one. What is that armor? Truth, righteousness, justice, peace, faith, and salvation. This leads us to having faith and maintaining that faith in faithfulness unto God and His Messiah according to His Word. We are told to study God’s Torah and to pray! Consider the principle way in which the evil one advances his army in the spiritual world according to the following verses:
1 John 5:19
We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one.”
And the great dragon was thrown down, the serpent of old who is called the devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world.
2 Corinthians 4:3-4
And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, in whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ.”
2 Timothy 2:24-26
The Lord’s bondservant must not be quarrelsome, but…patient when wronged, with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition, if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, having been held captive by him to do his will.
Notice how repentance is a gift of God, this is a creative act of God in our lives, to recognize we have sinned and to repent turning from our sins. This is why Paul writes that repentance leads to the knowledge of the truth and truth causes one to come to his senses and escape the evil one. Is it obvious how completely the enemy has penetrated the minds of men as we read in 2 Timothy 2 of the need for God to grant men repentance. This is a gift of God, and demonstrates the Lord is working in our hearts. According to the New Testament the entire world is in the devil’s deathly grip. He holds people captive to do his bidding by trickery and deceit, blinding the minds of those who are perishing, keeping them from coming to their senses and seeing the world for what it really is, a world filled with the influences of the spiritual world! Yeshua warned us that the evil one is a liar and the father of lies (John 8:44) and he deceives even God’s children if that were possible. When we come to God by faith in His Messiah Yeshua, we are given a new Spirit, of truth and peace and life, and our minds are set free from the lies of the evil one. Titus 3:3 tells us that our minds are filled with this worlds foolishness, the lies that lead to the deceptions that enslave us. This occurs because God’s people walk according to the course of this world according to the prince and the power of the air. (Ephesians 2:2). A key element of our own rescue is by reversing the process through the study of Torah and all of Scripture. According to the Apostolic Writings, we are to “lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit,” and “be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and put on the new self which…has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth. Therefore, laying aside falsehood, speak truth each one of you with his neighbor…” (Ephesians 4:22-25). The key point is to study the truth and righteousness of God! As we see here in the Scientific research, scientists give mice the ability to see into a previously unknown world, into the infrared region, the spectrum at which our eyes are not capable of perceiving. When we believe in the one on whom God had sent to save us from our sins, we take the first steps in arming ourselves for the battle against the evil one, and the Lord enables us to see into the spiritual realm, to know what is truly going on in both the seen and the unseen world. In the power of God’s Messiah, we are able to engage the spiritual battle with God’s “weapons of warfare that are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses,” and so we come against the lies of the evil one by “destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God…” (2 Corinthians 10:3-5). The Spiritual insight for this week reveals to us the importance of drawing near to the Lord God Almighty by faith in His Son Yeshua the Messiah! The Lord is our protector, and we have power in His name to overcome everything the enemy tries to throw at us! And more than this, we have the power or prayer to tear down strongholds and everything that sets itself up against the Lord!