Daniel's prophecy that the Sanctuary of God, the starry heaven or the universe, will be cleansed 2,300 evening mornings or days after his vision in chapter 8, demonstrates that Christ is the source of man's light and understanding. As the apostle John wrote of Jesus: "That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world." [John 1:9]
Only when 23 centuries had elapsed from the date of Daniel's vision, were the secrets of the structure of the heavens made known and understood, because of the discoveries and publications of astronomers and mathematicians of various nations, most of whom were devout Christians.
In 1587 Francisco Valles (1524-1592), physician to Phillip II of Spain, published Se Scripta sunt physice in libris sacris, siive sacra Philosophica
V. Navarro Brotóns writes:
[Continuity and Change in Cosmological Ideas in Spain Between the Sixteenth and Seventeeenth Centuries: The Impact of Celestial Novelties. In: Change and Continuity in Early Modern Cosmology, edited by Patrick Boner. Springer Science & Business Media, 2011. p. 38] [url=http://books.google.ca/books?id=xPq0Bv5Kz4EC]http://books.google.ca/books?id=xPq0Bv5Kz4EC
Valles tried to demonstrate, by means of an exegesis of various scriptural passages, that these passages contain and express very clearly the true representation of the world, which coincide to a large extent with Aristotlean natural philosophy, just as Valles understands it. In the course of a commentary on the second chapter of Ecclesiastes, he mentions the "nova" of 1572 and criticizes the "astrologers who maintain that its appearance signals a new creation." He says that some even go so far as to suggest that it was a comet produced in the heavens themselves, even though the heavens, in reality, were incapable of alteration.
Brotóns continues, discussing the work of other Spanish scholars who wrote on cosmology: [p.38]
Diego de Zuñiga was involved in the condemnation of heliocentrism by the Roman Inquisition in 1616, whereby his book, In Job Commentaria (Toledo, 1584) was expurgated along with Copernicus' De Revolutionibus. In his book, Zuñiga effectively tried to prove that Copernicus's theory was not contrary to the Scriptures. In a later text entitled Philosophis prima pars (Toledo, 1596) Zuñiga commented on the various themes of traditional cosmology and revised his ideas on Copernicus' theory, reaching the conclusion that the movement of the earth was impossible, "in accordance with what was said by Aristotle and other most expert astronomers and philosopher." Several allusions to the "nova" of 1572 appear in this work, in the course of discussion of stars and comets. Zuñiga says it was observed in several places in Spain, France, Belgium, Austria, and Italy, and adds that the astronomers had not found any discernable parallax in their determination. He recognizes that if it were a comet formed in the heavens, its appearance would have constituted a strong argument against the solidity of the spheres and the incorruptibility of the skies, but he adds that astrologers and physicists denied that it was a comet: "Since they claim that it [was] a celestial body, indeed, a new star, rather than a comet, I could [claim] that it was produced by a force greater than nature." Zuñiga agreed with those authors that believed it was a star whose appearance and disappearance was not a natural event, but a miracle, supernatural and beyond man's comprehension. With this emphasis on potentia dei absoluta, Zuñiga avoided the serious cosmological implications of the phenomenon.
Due to his level of prestige and despite his criticism of Aristotle, Jerónimo Muñoz (c. 1520-c. 1591) was offered in 1578 the mathematics and Hebrew chairs at the University of Salamanca, with a salary ten times greater than in Valencia. Muñoz stayed in Salamanca until his death in 1592. His students, who occupied the mathematics and astronomy chairs in Salamanca and Alcala, carried on his teachings. One of the most loyal of his followers was Diego Péres de Mesa, professor of mathematics and astronomy at the University of Alcala from 1586 and responsible for the same subjects in Seville, in a chair created by the City Council (Consjo Municipal) at the request of the Parliament (Cortes) in Madrid in collaboration with the House of Trade (Casa de la Contracion) in Seville (along with the University of Navigators (Universidad de Marrantes).
In his Comentarios de Sphera (1596), written for the classes he gave in Seville, Pérez de Mesa defines the purpose of cosmography and indicates that this subject is a "science almost mixed with philosophy and threrefore resolves many wonderful questions of philosophy." such as whether or not there is a sphere of fire in the concave surface of the (sphere of the) moon, whether it is possible that the earth moves, whether the stars move "by themselves or together with spheres, being fixed upon them," and whether the substance of the sky is quintaessential and incorruptible. Evidently, like Muñoz, Pérez de Mesa considers that astronomers are perfectly entitled to make statements about natural philosophy, and he devotes the first part of his commentary to a discussion of cosmological themes. He denies that there is a sphere of fire. He also denies the existence of and necessity of celestial spheres, mentioning the works of Munoz and the preface of Jean Pena to his book of Perspective. Against the doctrine of the incorruptibility of heavens, Pérez de Mesa mentions the observations and conclusions of Munoz on the supernova of 1572. He devotes an entire chapter to the motion of the earth, although he only refers to its motion of rotation. For Pérez de Mesa, the answer to this question could no be one of absolute certainty, but rather of possibility.
Following Muñoz's death, the teaching of mathematics and astronomy was carried out by his two students, Gabriel Serrano and Antionio Nuñez Zamora. The latter occupied the chair from 1598 to 1612. In 1610, Nuñez Zumora published in Salamanca a treatise on comets, Liber de comets, in quo demonstratur Cometam anni 1604 fuisse in firmamento. Here, Nuñez Zamora paid special attention to the supernova of 1604. He must have written the book around 1605, the year of the first censure and the year which appears at the bottom of the first book of the work. The treatise contains three books in Latin and one in Spanish. The first book concerns the nature of comets, their material and their form. Nuñez Zamora agrees that they are formed by burning exhalations and refers to the sulphur of the alchemists and Paracelsus. Their cause is related to planetary conjunctions, though Nuñez Zanora also considers the moon's strength important. As for their final cause, apart from their character as signs, comets contribute to the conservation of the universe and purge the earth of poisonous exhalations.
The second book shows that comets can be created in the sky, an opinion, Nuñez Zamora asserts, which has caused much controversy among writers. The followers of Aristotle in particular have accused astronomers of being hasty when suggesting that something can be created or destroyed again in the heavens. Against these criticisms, Nuñez Zamora defends the demonstrative character of the mathematical disciplines and the certainty with which mathematicians establish their conclusions. His demonstration of the celestial nature of comets is naturally based on the absence of parallax.
In the period following Copernicus, until the mid-eighteenth century, Spanish scholars who sought to defend the Scriptures against the heliocentric view relied on portions of Scripture that were introduced as corruptions in the second century BC and later, by Antiochus IV and his agents, apostate Jews who admired Greek cosmology and religion. These cosmological corruptions are revealed by Daniel's prophecy in chapter 8, as explained in this thread.