THE GOLD OF THAT LAND: Biblical Minerals & Rocks  


 

36.     ice

Hebrew:  qôrach, ice, hail. Job 6:16, 38:29; Psalm 147:17; Ezekiel 1:22.

Arabic: tsalg

Mineralogy:

    Ephemeral as it may appear, water ice nonetheless qualifies as a mineral by virtue of being a naturally occurring, inorganic solid substance with a definite chemical composition and crystalline structure. Glaciers and ice caps contain approximately 2.14% of the Earth's water as ice. Ice crystallizes as snowflakes in intricate flat hexagonal crystals, but otherwise it forms interlocking crystalline masses that are clear to white and transparent to translucent when pure.

Biblical Background:

    The references to hail in Job 38:22 and Psalm 147:17 emphasize God’s control over forces that lie beyond human understanding. Elsewhere, God uses hail and other natural afflictions as punishments (e.g., Exodus 9:13-15; Haggai 2:17; Revelation 16:21).

Note:

    Whether it occurs as solid, liquid, or gas, water consists of the same combination of two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom. As Lance Moore quips, “God’s best invention has to be water.” The Bible contains innumerable references to liquid water, but they lie beyond the scope of this book.

 

Sources:

        Hurlbut, 1952, op. cit.; 227.

        Moore, Lance, 2003. Outdoors with God. Urichsville, OH: Barbour Publishing; 21-30.

Illustrations:

        To observe the visual effects of ice crystals in the upper atmosphere on a sunset, go to http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap060205.html.


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Last updated: 05/13/06.