CREATIONISTS hate the concept of alien life. They don’t even like the idea that other worlds exist. In their view of things, the entire universe was created for the drama of humans on Earth.
Perhaps that’s why the planets are virtually absent from the bible. As we’ve noted before, the entire bible mentions the planets only once — in 2 Kings 23:5. According to the King James version:
And he put down the idolatrous priests, whom the kings of Judah had ordained to burn incense in the high places in the cities of Judah, and in the places round about Jerusalem; them also that burned incense unto Baal, to the sun, and to the moon, and to the planets, and to all the host of heaven.
The planets are so unimportant in scripture that the only thing we’re told is not to burn incense unto them. There’s no mention that the planets are lifeless, nor is there any specific claim that life exists on Earth alone — but the uniqueness of life on Earth, although unexpressed, certainly seems implicit.
We assume that’s why the idea of life “out there” has the creationists spooked. It would be something new to learn about and they’re not comfortable with that. Also, it would be difficult to reconcile with their concept of the human-centered purpose of the universe.
The catholic church, however, appears reconciled to the inevitability that we’ll find life elsewhere. See: Beyond Darwin: Vatican Conference on Aliens.
That attitude seems wise, because the discovery of life on other worlds is probably in our future. For example, there’s this BBC article: Super-Earths’ Orbit Nearby Stars. It’s quite interesting. You may want to read it, because we’re going to give you the creationist “analysis” of that story. The BBC reports:
Planet-hunters have discovered two “super-Earths” orbiting two nearby Sun-like stars. These rocky planets are larger than the Earth but much smaller than ice giants such as Uranus and Neptune. Scientists say the discoveries are a step towards finding potentially habitable planets – smaller planets that are comparable to the Earth.
Both stars resemble our Sun in size and age. The planets have orbits too close to their stars to support life or liquid water. But, according to Dr Butler, they point the way …
Professor Vogt said: “These detections indicate that low-mass planets are quite common around nearby stars. “The discovery of potentially habitable nearby worlds may be just a few years away.”
What’s the attitude of the most extreme creationists? For your weekend contemplation, we bring you commentary from Answers in Genesis (AIG), one of the major sources of creationist wisdom. They have this new article at their website: Astronomers may soon find more “Earth-like” planets — and with them, alien life? It’s the third item in a feature they call “News to Note, A weekly feature examining news from the biblical viewpoint.” Here are some excerpts, to which we added some bold font for emphasis:
Of course, for evolution-believing astronomers and astrobiologists, the existence of other “Earths” — and life on them — is effectively a forgone conclusion.
Faith — evolutionary faith — is thus a cornerstone of the search for Earth-like planets and for extraterrestrial life. Earth “cannot” be unique; life “cannot” be special — no matter what the evidence suggests.
Yeah, faith. But the creationists’ hope that life is unique to Earth — that’s not faith. Or if it is, it’s okay because it’s their faith. Let’s read on:
It may well be that we discover genuinely Earth-like planets in the heavens, and such discoveries would not challenge the biblical view. Until that point, however, such news as this reminds us of how desperate evolutionists are to be comforted by finding signs of their alleged origins among the stars.
We’re desperate. Okay. Here’s the end of the AIG article:
All that said, even while scientists throw the net farther and farther in search of habitable planets, they are also broadening the definition of habitable planets to include icy planets with possible subsurface oceans (with some salt, perhaps?).
Can you understand what they’re complaining about? Aside from the obvious fear that their primitive worldview will soon be shattered, we suspect that they don’t like sitting on the sidelines while educated people are engaged in the great adventure of learning new things. Creationists are fuming because they have no control over such events, and because their thoughts are of no interest to anyone.
But if that’s their gripe, whose fault is it? Their marginal position is entirely their own choice.
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