Life in Our Solar System

© Original content written by James R. Carlson

planets

Since I was a little boy, I saw the solar system as a lifeless system where planets had incredible heat, no water, gaseous storms, etc.; all things that do not provide for an environment where life can occur. Look at the asteroid belt past Mars; was that once a planet that broke apart? Was Jupiter just the trash can for all the gasses in our solar system? Everything in our solar system shows a lack of conditions that favor life; except the planet earth.

The Bible tells us that God not only created all matter in the universe with his Word (“Let there be Light”), He also provided for a special creation on earth. Apparently, the waters of our planet once covered everything, so God separated the waters into 2 regions, those above and below the ‘firmament’ in the sky (those in the sky later flooded the earth). Then, God separated the waters on the earth from the land to make dry ground and the seas. He then created the plants on the earth; the sun, the moon, and the stars over the earth. He created life in the oceans, in the sky, and on the ground; the fish, the birds, and land animals were all created specially by God. Then God created mankind. So, the work of God was special in that it didn’t evolve but was the divine act of God in our solar system on one planet – earth.

This is the presentation of the creation week from the Book of Genesis. This outlines a special place for the earth that is unique in our solar system. The other planets around our sun are not suited for life; it is apparent that God did not create them for life or prepare them to support life. The idea that mankind can explore the solar system, or the galaxy, for new places to live is just fiction.

However, I do not object to space exploration or the pursuit of possible life elsewhere on other planets. I just don’t expect to find any.

Years ago, a professor at the UT School of Aerospace Engineering, Dr. Hans Mark, told us of a conference he had with religious leaders. They were given the question of whether or not there was life elsewhere in the solar system or galaxy and they routinely responded by saying no; but if there was life their response would be, ‘Praise God!’ This is why I do not object to exploring the possibility of life elsewhere because it is all the handy work of God and not of evolution. However, there are more important things on earth to be spending our tax dollars on.

Each and every planet in our solar system is a witness to lifeless environments. Mercury is so hot on one side we would fry a person and cold on the other such that we would freeze. Venus has toxic hot gasses under intense pressures that cannot sustain life. Mars has no real life of its own despite the science fiction movies. The gas planets, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune are all one big toxic storm. And if you consider Pluto and Eris as planets, they are so far away from the Sun that Eris is considered to have a frozen atmosphere incapable of supporting life.

But then there are the moons of the planets. If there was life on them, that would be interesting. But these are as inhospitable for life as the planets. Some conjecture that there could be life below the ice cap on Jupiter’s moons, Ganymede and Europa. There are plans to explore this planet in the future. One of Saturn’s moons, Enceladus, erupts icy plumes on a regular basis. These ice moons are not suited for life and it is unlikely that any will be found.

The idea of life on other planets is one of evolution; if it occurred here on earth then why not elsewhere in the universe. Remember the fundamental law of biology – biogenesis; life comes from life. Evolution denies this fundamental law of biology and advocates abiogenesis – life emerging from lifeless chemicals. This has never been witnessed or proven by experimental science but it is a belief held by many who search for life outside of our own planet.

As we see the creation record of the Bible telling us of special creation on the planet earth, it is hard to look past the fact that there is no life in our solar system beyond earth that we can find (try as we have) and that the rest of the solar system appears to be a random display of general creation during the creation week. It appears that once again, the Bible has the better explanation for the origins of life on our planet as the remaining planets are totally lifeless. Once again, the record of the Bible proves to be true.

The Evolution of Super Heroes

© Original content written by James R. Carlson

Super Jesus

The comic book characters seen on TV and in the movies are very entertaining. We love stories of good guys beating up the bad guys. We love a victorious fight. We thrill at the sights and sounds of adventure and super powers. But in all of the fun, have you ever stopped to think about where these super guys came from?

Perhaps the most famous super hero is Super Man. He grew up on a planet far away from the earth called Krypton. His parents sent him to earth because their planet was disintegrating. And on earth he would experience power like no one else. This is all good fun and games but look beneath it all and there is something more to the story.

Evolution is supposed to have occurred on earth (never proven scientifically) and if here then why not there in outer space? Obviously, there would be no people on another planet without evolution so we find a hidden factor in this super hero’s story with the theory of evolution. And evolution has given us another type of super man.

A dark chapter in history was in the 20th century when the Nazis took over Germany politically and instituted the ideas of evolution in their country. The idea of ‘super men’ was that the Germans were the ‘master race’ of mankind. Granted, Super Man took on these ‘super men’ and defeated them WWII. But any notion of a super man harkens back to the ideas of evolution.

Turn then to other super heroes who through some accident of chemistry, medicine, bug bite, or radiation evolved to a higher plane of being. We find the Incredible Hulk, Captain America, the Fantastic Four, Spider Man, etc. all evolving due to some evolutionary effect on their body by these accidental forces. Evolution was once thought to have occurred by such random chance accidents that science hoped to discover. The science fiction of the early 20th century evolution has taken on new form with these super powered people.

The Omega Man was another evolutionary vision presented by Teilhard de Chardin in his book, The Phenomenon of Man. According to Chardin, evolution would continue to lead mankind into greater stages of development as we’re just passing through this stage. This idea has since found its way into popular science fiction with a different set of super heroes.

Recall the science fiction movie, Star Trek 1, where the captain of the enterprise (Kirk was an admiral then) was joined with V’Ger (Voyager 6) to bridge the separation between man and machine. The movie played on the idea of the creator, who is mankind, and the machine, man’s creation, to suggest that evolution would take form in the union of man and machine. Flying through space like the gods of mythology, the crew of Star Trek were in a sense super heroes.

Also witness the ‘force’ behind the Star Wars movies. This force supposedly came from the ‘midi-chlorians’ that reside in the cells of all living things. The word ‘midi-chlorians’ is derived from the mitochondria and chloroplasts that provide energy for animal and plant cells. These ‘midi-chlorians’ are supposed to have a symbiotic relationship with their living hosts. This idea came from the symbiotic theory of evolution, which says that long ago, separate bacteria joined together to form the mitochondria within cells. Again, these super heroes of space travel are a form of super hero based upon the ideas of evolution.

I admit to enjoying these types of movies and will probably see many more of them in the coming years. However, the dark side of these super people is that they are no match for the greatest super hero of them all – the Son of God, Jesus Christ. In fact, it may be possible for people to miss their opportunity to connect with this real super person by focusing on these lesser characters of myth and fiction.

Jesus was and is the Creator of the universe. He is the express image of God and the very person of God. He came to the earth in human form as Immanuel and lived with people only to die for them. He not only paid for the penalty of mankind’s sin, he rose from the dead like no other person before or since. He saved all of mankind with his sacrifice and gave us the forgiveness of sin, eternal life, His Holy Spirit, and much much more.

My prayer for you is that you find God leading you to faith in Jesus Christ. In Jesus, you can have a spirit transformation that is real; not a fictional evolution. You can grow in God’s goodness and grace and perform super human acts of kindness like forgiving your neighbor and loving your enemies. The Love of God is a powerful force that not only changes lives, it provides hope for a better tomorrow. There is so much that you will discover from the Truth of God’s Word about Jesus. Isn’t it time to put down the comic books and pick up the Bible?

Turn to the book of Revelations for starters and see the drama that unfolds therein. There is no story like it anywhere. John goes into the future to witness events in the last days; a vision of Jesus Christ. He writes them down and returns to the first century in Israel. We then read about the future from this book in the past from an eye witness. The visions in the book are technicolor beyond what cinema can portray. And there is a special blessing for reading this one particular book in the Bible (book of books). But there is more to discover in the rest of the Bible. Revelations is the last book in the Bible.

Super heroes can be fun toys to play with but God has a greater purpose in leading you to Jesus. He wants to make a super human out of you. The word ‘super’ means ‘above’. You can have super powers when you are led of the Holy Spirit, forgive others, share your faith, pray for the needs of people, etc. Living above the ordinary nature of mankind’s sin is what living the Christian life is all about.

So, while we have fun with these comic book characters, recognize the evolutionary origin that they went through and the perhaps subtle message that leads one away from God and the person of Jesus. The lingering myth of evolution is sure to move one away from God, the Creator – Jesus. Walking by faith in Jesus in your day to day life will make you a super hero in the eyes of God. And who knows what work of wonders awaits you as a servant of our Lord Jesus Christ.