The Apple Of God's Eye

June 12, 2011

Did Life Really Originate From Asteroid Microbes?

U of A scientist Christopher Herd with the Tagish Lake meteorite - http://www.vancouversun.com

Scientists are now fawning over a meteorite found in British Columbia, Cananda, supposedly containing evidence that asteroids are production sites for molecules such as amino acids which form the building blocks of life.
The space rock first crashed to Earth along the B.C.-Yukon border (Tagish Lake) in 2000, and now scientists are saying it contains important new clues about the building blocks of life and how they formed in the early universe more than 4.6 billion years ago.
“What we’re seeing are the ingredients of life,” said planetary geologist Christopher Herd at the University of Alberta. Herd and a team from NASA and several U.S. universities report in the journal Science today that they have found several types of organic molecules of “prebiotic importance” in fragments of the meteorite.

This indicates there may have been a “Goldilocks window,” when organic molecules formed on asteroids may have seeded Earth and other newly formed planets with the chemical precursors needed for life to emerge, Herd said. The analysis turned up a dozen different amino acids, which are used to build proteins and other molecules common in cell walls. (VancouverSun.com)

Herd believes that warmer temperatures in the asteroid and the presence of water and possibly certain minerals provide a good environment for certain chemical reactions needed to produce organic molecules, a class of carbon-based chemicals that living things are largely made of.

However, looking to microbes as early evidence of the building blocks of life, without substantial support, is merely straining at a gnat, and as evidence for life this is pathetic. But we shouldn’t be surprised at the waves this research is making, because in 1996 researchers also claimed they had found fossil bacteria on a meteorite from Mars. Eventually, most scientists decided that what the overeager scientists were really looking at was simply a rock. (more…)

February 26, 2011

Did It All Really Start With A Big Bang?

Filed under: Universe — melchia @ 3:25 am

Editors Note: The site Trumpet.com is fast becoming one of my favourite reads. It has concise, provable and easy to read articles which are interesting and timely in today’s world. The following article is spot on in its analysis of the universe and the sound rebuttal of atheists who think it all started by chance.

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wildwildweather.com

Science has proven that the universe did not always exist. It had a beginning.

What’s interesting is that scientists didn’t always believe that. Just a few generations ago, general consensus was that the universe had no beginning and no end—it just always was. Evolutionists found this convenient, as it contradicted the biblical creation account.

Evidence began to refute this idea in the 1920s. Data showed that distant objects are drifting away from our galaxy. Edwin Hubble, by measuring the wavelengths of light coming from other galaxies, determined that the universe is expanding in all directions. This discovery set the scientific world on fire. After all, if the universe is moving apart, then at one time it must have been compressed in a single location. It must have had a beginning.

The big bang theory was born

What is the theory? It has undergone significant refinement and revision over its near-80-year lifespan; today, cosmologists are developing and testing a few dozen variations of it. But in essence the idea is that, somewhere between 10 and 15 billion years ago, the entire universe came to exist suddenly, dramatically, in an infinitesimally brief moment. Theoretical physicist Brian Greene describes the “inflationary” big-bang model this way: “the size of the universe increased by a factor larger than a million trillion trillion in less than a millionth of a trillionth of a trillionth of a second” (The Fabric of the Cosmos).

Doesn’t sound very compatible with evolution, does it? It’s the extreme opposite of slow, gradual changes over billions of years. And it can’t be attributed to natural selection or other evolutionary processes that supposedly explain how advanced life came to exist without an intelligent author.

In fact, scientists first rejected the big-bang concept because it seemed too religious. Its echoes of “in the beginning” bothered them. (Their concern was no doubt heightened by the fact that the physicist who first advanced the theory, Georges Lemaître, was also a priest.) Somehow, though, atheists the world over eventually came to accept it as proof that the cosmos has no creator. (more…)

April 11, 2010

Massive Survey Of Cosmos Proves Dark Matter Defies Law Of Physics

This dark matter map was created by the Hubble Telescope by measuring light from distant stars thought to have been deflected by dark matter. The map of half the Universe reveals dark matter filaments, collapsing under the relentless pull of gravity and growing clumpier over time - dailymail.co.uk

Most astronomers believe that the universe began in a Big Bang up to 15 billion years ago. The Big Bang model holds that the resulting universe should contain exactly the “critical density” of matter required to keep it geometrically “flat,” with just enough gravity to balance the outward momentum, slowing it down.  The result: a cosmos coasting indefinitely on the verge of collapse.

Here’s the bad news for this theory. New evidence from a massive survey of the cosmos (which included 446,000 galaxies) was recently carried out by an international team using the Hubble Space Telescope. It indicates that stars and galaxies are flying apart in all directions at an ever-increasing rate – thanks to an anti-gravity boost from some kind of unseen “dark matter” of an exotic nature, of which most of the universe exists. Normal matter is only a few per cent of the total, so most of the universe is dark, dark matter and dark energy, and scientists have absolutely no clue what its physical nature is.

The  Province.com quoted University of B. C. astronomer Ludovic Van Waerbeke as suggesting that dark matter is counteracting the pull of gravity on a cosmic scale. If the new results hold up, scientists said, they could have enormous ramifications for theories of cosmic “evolution.”

In other words, scientists are surprised to find that the expansion of the universe is actually accelerating, and they have no way to explain this phenomenon because it is supposed to be impossible according to the law of physics. (more…)

March 18, 2010

Proof That Extraterrestrial Life Exists!

Filed under: Universe — melchia @ 5:53 am
Tags: ,

brucemhood.wordpress.com

Millions are being spent in an attempt to contact other life in the universe. What will be found?

We look up into a black sky, dotted with millions of stars, and we wonder — is there life out there? Are there other creatures similar to life on earth? Are there life forms totally different from ours?  Or is there no life at all in outer space? Is planet Earth unique?

These questions have puzzled mankind for centuries. Even modern men are bewildered about mysterious places such as Nazca in Peru and the Bermuda Triangle.

Science fiction writers have capitalized on our natural curiosity and have produced hundreds of books, magazine articles and movies on the subject of life in the universe.

Throngs have seen such movies as E.T. — The Extraterrestrial and Star Wars. People are intrigued by futurist movies and wonder if someday there will indeed be Star Wars with beings from other planets.

What Has Been Discovered So Far?

Efforts to contact life beyond our planet have, up to now, yielded nothing. We have been able to send manned spacecraft into earth’s orbit. We have been able to send men to the moon and return them safely. Every effort of the various space programs has so far demonstrated no form of physical life exists, or ever did, other than our own life on planet Earth. (more…)

November 14, 2009

Life In Space: If You Can't Find It, Redefine It!

news.bbc.co.ukAccording to a BBC News article, Nasa’s experiment last month to find water on the Moon was a major success. The space agency smashed a rocket and a probe into a large crater at the lunar south pole, hoping to kick up ice. Scientists who have studied the data now say instruments trained on the impact plume saw copious quantities of water-ice and water vapour.

So what does this mean for us? Though we know the moon is devoid of life, the fact that water has been found on it means that this substance could be found on other planets. And water is, of course, is the only substance known to support living organisms.

This leads us to an interesting observation. After decades of finding that space is devoid of life, scientists which often mock the notion of a God as Creator, believe they may have found the answer: redefine “life.”

Why? Because surely if life springs forth as a result of evolution, we would see it developing somewhere else in the universe in addition to our rather tiny planet. Yet, despite the billions spent on deep space telescopes, manned missions to space, probes to Mars—and despite seeing galaxies farther away than anyone thought possible—no one has found even a blade of grass, much less sentient life.

And so the  National Academies of Science has have come up with a novel approach to the problem: simply redefine what the word life means. Their report gives the following criteria for life as an alternative to nasa’s current expectations:

  • A thermodynamic disequilibrium of some sort, from which energy can be harvested
  • A chemical environment that allows the persistence of covalent bonds
  • A liquid environment
  • A molecular inheritance system that can support Darwinian evolution

With these dumbed down criteria, the proper conditions for life in space have already been found. Most places in the universe have some sort of thermodynamic disequilibrium, and many have liquids—just not water. And so the ultimate claim of scientists is that living organisms could develop in conditions completely foreign to Earth. And now that nasa has new criteria available for its use, they continue to find no life outside of their own globe of existence.

The next question then begs – why make such a profound push to find life in space? Because the evolutionary theory depends on it. If life really evolves, the evolution of life in space would be scientifically equivalent to the coming of the Messiah. Scientists hold their beliefs about the origins of life on faith—and the emptiness of space proves it.

Instead of redefining life in a pathetic attempt to plug holes in the evolutionary dogma, we should ask instead why space is devoid of life. Look the obvious in the face and try to define it first, rather than chasing the evolutionary tail.

Even religious teachers offer no reasonable answers as to why God created an entire universe filled with stars, planets, black holes, comets and nebulae—and then left it vacant except for a single planet in the Milky Way. Many now try to marry the evolutionary theory with a concept of creation, making God out to be a complete liar.

But there are definitive answers in the Bible which help us to  better understand why science can’t answer fundamental questions—and how this links to your incredible human potential. All you have to do is read this book.

October 29, 2009

Universal Facts

universeIf you could count all the stars just in our galaxy alone at the rate of 125 stars every minute, it would take over 3,000 years to count them. There are a great number of galaxies and a vast amount of space between them. The closest galaxy to the Milky Way is the Andromeda, and to reach there traveling at the speed of light would take you 2.3 million years. There are hundreds of billions of galaxies with hundreds of billions of stars—some with as many as 1 trillion stars.

The most distant galaxy ever observed is estimated to be around 13,000,000,000 light-years away. Discovered by the Hubble Space Telescope in 2004, it is located behind the galactic cluster Abell 2218, which bends the object’s light. It is a small, energetic galaxy whose light that is seen on Earth now would have set out when the universe was just 750 million years old. This is the most distant object that can be observed consistently; some ephemeral gamma-ray bursts have been observed that are slightly more distant than this object.

And man has only begun to explore outer space with our modern telescopes today. Conservative estimates of the known universe’s size place it at over 20 thousand million light years (the distance light travels in one year at a velocity of about 9,500,000,000,000 kilometres) wide. That is about 120 million million million million miles. The number of galaxies is estimated to be a few trillion. If we use the figure 3 trillion, and estimate that each galaxy has about 100 billion stars, that means that the known universe has stars that number over 30 with 23 zeros behind it, or 300 thousand million million million million individual stars. That figure is virtually impossible to comprehend.

Yet even this does not tell the real size. With all those bodies crowding the space up there, you would think it would get a little clustered. Not so! The universe is so vast in relation to the matter it contains that it can be compared in the following way: A building 20 miles long, 20 miles wide and 20 miles high that contains 1 grain of sand.

Only God knows the size of the universe. And get this, God says that He has named and numbered each one of those innumerable (to us) heavenly bodies (Ps. 147:4). Why did God create so many stars? Was it for no reason at all? Or was it for an incredible reason? When I read Rom. 8:17, it seems to me that man has an awesome potential that is almost beyond words to describe.

Paul wrote in Romans 11:26 that all Israel shall eventually be saved. That’s quite a lot of people. It has been estimated that since Adam and Eve there have been 25 to 50 billion people who have lived on this planet. It is almost mind boggling to think what God has in mind for puny human beings.  He says He will resurrect all to (spiritual) “glory.”

If all these people make it, and become spirit-born God beings, where would we all fit? Would there be enough “space” to go around? Certainly! There is a good possibility that some day we could rule over an entire galaxy. Just think: God created a universe so huge that He could actually give you an entire galaxy to manage and rule over, along with its millions or billions of stars and its orbiting planets around each of these stars.

If an estimated 200 billion sons of God is taken as a possibility, that means each would be responsible for maintaining and developing 50 billion stars and their attendant planets—enough to form an entire galaxy.” Now that’s a potential worth debating with those who believe the evolution hoax.

October 28, 2009

Our Incomprehensibly Large Universe!

stevekanaras.blogspot.comThe Hubble telescope has shown us countless billions of galaxies in areas of the universe which we once thought were empty. For example, by focusing on a small speck in the sky in an area that was thought to be void of stars, astronomers soon discovered that this small speck actually contained 1,500 galaxies! And remember that each galaxy can contain untold millions of stars and some astronomers now believe that there may be as many galaxies in the sky as there are stars in our own galaxy.

Space travel

In an effort to learn more about space, mankind has put men on the moon and brought them back home safely, built a space station where astronauts can stay for months at a time. But space travel carries some great risks, and is quite costly. And these adventures of man into space are merely flying hundreds of miles into the sky—they come nowhere close to probing the true depths of space!

After reaching the moon, astronomy’s next goal is to put a man on Mars—a planet in our solar system about 150 million miles from Earth (compare to the moon at only 240,000 miles away). Even if this journey is successful, the trip of 150 million miles is a mere jog compared to the vastness of space. We might intrude into space, but we as humans cannot even begin to conquer it. Getting to Mars is only one planet of a vast solar system, part of an even larger galaxy—one of trillions of galaxies in this huge universe which are billions of light years away from Earth.

Light travels at over 186,000 miles per second; a light year is how far light can travel in a year moving at 186,000 miles per second, which figures out to be close to 6 trillion miles. (To travel just one light year at 100 miles per hour, it would take almost 7 million years.) Another measurement astronomers use is an au (astronomical unit). An au is the distance between the Earth and the sun—about 93 million miles.

The Giant Milky Way

All the space vehicles, manned or unmanned, still travel within our one galaxy—the Milky Way—one of millions or billions of galaxies. The Milky Way is considered a giant galaxy and contains about 400 billion stars. It is a spiral galaxy, which means that from a distance it looks like a pinwheel, or a big disc in the center with flat arms going out in all directions.

To get an idea of how vast this galaxy is, to travel the distance from the outer end of one disc to the outer end of another would take 100,000 years traveling at the speed of light.

Located on one of these discs—which is rotating around the center of the galaxy—is our solar system: the sun, moon, Earth and the planets. The star of our solar system, the sun, is located about two thirds of the way out from the center of the galaxy—roughly 28,000 light years from the center. Whereas it takes the Earth one year to orbit the sun, it takes the sun 250 million years to make just one orbit of the center of the galaxy.

Unmanned Spaced Probes

1Voyagers 1 and 2 were launched in 1977 to explore where nothing from Earth had ever been before. Now they each are much farther from Earth than any space vehicle has ever been. Speeding outward at more than 38,000 miles per hour, both continue to send back scientific information about their surroundings through the Deep Space program.

Voyager 1 remains operational, currently pursuing its extended mission to locate and study the boundaries of the Solar System, including the Kuiper belt and beyond. Its original mission was to visit Jupiter and Saturn; and it was the first probe to provide detailed images of the moons of these planets.

“Voyager 1 is currently the farthest human-made object from Earth, and as of August 28, 2009, it is about 110.94 AU (16.596 billion km, or 10.312 billion miles) from the Sun, and has passed the termination shock, entering the heliosheath, with the current goal of reaching and studying the heliopause, which is the known boundary of the solar system. If Voyager 1 is still functioning when it finally completes the passage through the heliopause (effectively becoming the first human-made object to leave the solar system), scientists will get their first direct measurements of the conditions in the interstellar medium. Its primary targets were the planets Jupiter and Saturn and their associated moons and rings; its mission was the detection of the heliopause and particle measurements of solar wind and the interstellar medium. Both of the Voyager probes have far outlasted their originally-planned lifespan. Each probe gets its electrical power from three radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs), which are expected to continue to generate enough electric power to let the probes keep communicating with Earth at least until the year 2025.” (Wikipedia)

By that time, Voyager 1 will be more than 12.4 billion miles from the sun. In some 296,000 years, if Voyager 2 was still traveling, it would pass Sirius, the brightest star in our sky, at a distance of about 4.3 light years (25 trillion miles).

Even more amazing were the Pioneer projects. Pioneers 10 and 11 were launched in 1972 and 1973—the fastest man-made objects to leave the Earth, launched at the incredible speed of 32,000 miles per hour. That is fast enough to pass the moon in 11 hours, and Mars’s orbit (50 million miles away) in just 12 weeks.

“Pioneer 10 (also called Pioneer F) was the first spacecraft to travel through the asteroid belt, which it entered on July 15, 1972, and to make direct observations of Jupiter, which it passed by on December 3, 1973. By some definitions, Pioneer 10 has become the first artificial object to leave the solar system. It is the first human-built object to have been set upon a trajectory leading out of the solar system. However, it still has not passed the heliopause or Oort cloud. The last weak signal from Pioneer 10 was received on January 23, 2003, when it was 12 billion kilometers (7.5 billion miles) from Earth. It is now heading in the direction of the star Aldebaran (about 68 light years away) in the constellation Taurus at roughly 2.6 AU per year. It will take Pioneer 10 over 2 million years to reach it. (Wikipedia)

Pioneer 11 was to go on after passing Jupiter 400 million miles away. Using this giant planet as a sling shot, Pioneer 11’s speed now reached 108,000 miles per hour. By 1979, Pioneer 11 flew within 13,000 miles of Saturn. In November 1995 the last communication from Pioneer 11 was received, as the Earth’s motion carried Saturn out of the view of the spacecraft antenna. Pioneer 11 is now headed toward the constellation of Aquila, just northwest of the constellation of Sagittarius and may pass near one of the stars in the constellation in about 4 million years.

Conclusion

We can barely begin to imagine how vast our universe is by how vast our own galaxy is! Manned and unmanned spacecraft can barely cover any significant ground in the area called “space.” Despite the incredible speeds of some of these vehicles, they are still millions of years away from the closest stars. The more we venture out into space, the more the immenseness of it staggers our imagination. That’s why I find it amusing when scientists make definitive statements about something that is so hard to comprehend. It’s better to keep the attitude humble, allow God to reveal truth to us and realize on our own, we really don’t know what we are talking about.

October 9, 2009

The Earth: The Only "Goldilocks" Planet!

Mixing astronomy and fairy tales isn’t commonly done, but scientists studying the “Goldilocks Zone” may have found the perfect spot, and it’s right in our back yard. It’s a spot in space that’s inhabitable to life forms — not too hot and not too cold — just right!

Many scientists are now realizing that the factors required for a civilization to exist are almost impossibly complex – and must be exceedingly rare, even in a universe as incomprehensibly vast as ours. Consider the following facts and how perfectly aligned they had to be to even entertain the notion of life. Then realize how foolish it is to believe that life on earth came from nothing:

The Earth

  1. Is the perfect distance from both the sun and moon to have a stable, predictable orbit. Twenty four hour days ensure the earth’s entire surface is properly warmed and cooled daily.
  2. It is the perfect size and mass. If it were less dense, an atmosphere wouldn’t form and remain. If it were more dense, the atmosphere would be uninhabitable. As it is, our atmosphere allows just the right amount of radiation to keep us warm, but not kill us.
  3. Earth’s metal core produces a magnetic field that protects the surface from radiation from space. Radioactive heat from the core, mantle and crust creates plate tectonics necessary for life.
  4. Humans need 27 elements to live. Earth has just the right mix of them.
  5. Earth has just the right amount of water in the proper ratios of liquid, solid,  and gas. A little more and the continents would be drowned. A little less and the planet would probably be too hot to host life.

The Moon

  1. The mass ratio of the moon compared to the earth is 50 times greater than that of any other known moon-planet combination. Yet it is the perfect size to stabilize the tilt of earth’s rotational axis. Without our moon, the tilt of our planet would vary from zero to 85 degrees, producing catastrophic climate changes.
  2. The gravity of the moon creates tidal movement. Thus, ocean waters do not stagnate – they clean the waters on the coasts from toxins and enrich them with nutrients. Yet these massive ocean movements never spill over across the continents.
  3. The ocean currents also regulate climate by circulating enormous amounts of heat.

The Sun

  1. Most stars (2/3 to 3/4 of them) are found in groups of two, three, four and more. If we had more than one sun, it would make life far less stable on earth because of erratic gravitational effects, and/or possible dangerous eruptions of tidal gas passing between the stars.
  2. 95% of all stars are less massive than the sun. A smaller, less dense sun would mean we’d have to be much closer to it to stay warm. The tidal locking would create synchronous rotation – where the same side of the earth always faced the sun. Thus, half the planet would freeze.
  3. It has the perfect luminosity. Because it is a yellow star, its energy lies mostly in the visible part of the light spectrum – not even 10% of its energy is ultraviolet. If it was much hotter, producing mostly ultraviolet light, life would be impossible. If it was a small red star, the supply of visible light would be inadequate.
  4. The sun’s size and distance from earth creates stable temperature fluctuations that allow the earth’s water to remain in perfect balance among its three phases: liquid, solid and gas.

Solar System

  1. Giant planets act as “comet and asteroid catchers.” Their gravity cleans up our solar system of space junk that might otherwise collide with earth. Cosmic collisions can cause mass extinctions.
  2. Our solar system is unusually rich in metal content, necessary for advanced life.

Cosmic Location

  1. Evidence suggests that elliptical galaxies lack enough elements heavier than helium to host advanced life. Spiral galaxies like ours have enough.
  2. Within the Milky Way, we sit in the “galactic habitable zone,” – far enough from the center that we’re not killed by radiation, but close enough that sufficient heavy elements needed for life are present.
  3. We’re nowhere near dangerous star clusters, quasars, nebulae, neutron stars, or supernovas.
  4. Real estate brokers often say the key to property value is location, location, location. If this principle applies to the cosmic scene, earth’s location would be considered way beyond prime. The earth appears to reside in the only neighbourhood in the universe where human life can exist and thrive long enough to enjoy a global, high tech civilization and to discover how rare they are.

For decades, scientists have been debating the conditions needed to replicate an Earth-like probablility of complex beyond the microbial level. We now know that the number of planets in our own galaxy alone could easily tally in the hundreds of billions. Astrobiologist vainly cling to the faint hope that a number of these could be carpeted in the  chemistry we call life, thus proving that life on Earth may be unique, but not miraculous.

Well, good luck because as I’ve shown, there needs to be an exceedingly (and almost impossible) complex host of conditions present for such a scenario. This cannot happen by fiat, nor can it be sustained. Yes, scientists will keep looking, but they won’t find a penny’s worth of evidence otherwise.

September 15, 2009

The Power Of God In Universal Vastness

starchild.gsfc.nasa.gov

starchild.gsfc.nasa.gov

It was just before dawn on July 16, 1945, and the world’s first atomic bomb was about to be tested in the desert of New Mexico.  It worked! In a split second, the world’s first atomic weapon released the power of 20,000 tons of conventional explosive.

Three weeks later, a second bomb was exploded. But this was no test. It was dropped over the Japanese city of Hiroshima, and in a flash of heat and light, the city was destroyed and 100,000 people were killed or injured. Conquered and conquerors alike were awed by the power of this terrible new weapon.

The power of the atom

What man did was turn a small piece of uranium — about one gram, or a 30th of an ounce — into raw energy. Scientists had long suspected that it was possible. It took the urgency of war for them to discover how.

But when they did, even those who worked on the project were sobered by the implications of the power they could unleash. U.S. President Harry Truman summed it up in a warning to the people of Japan the day after Hiroshima was destroyed. “It is a harnessing of the basic power of the universe. The force from which the sun draws its power…”

President Truman was right. Man had indeed harnessed the power of the universe, the very force from which the sun draws its power.

The atom bomb that devastated Hiroshima was a mere firecracker compared to the weapons of today. Now we measure their destructive power in megatons — one megaton is the equivalent of a 300-mile-long trainload of conventional explosives! But we have become so accustomed to such figures that they no longer impress us.

We should look again at the power of the atom. It is indeed the force by which mankind will bring himself to the edge of destruction. But there is also an encouraging and reassuring side to it. By splitting the atom, we learn — or could learn, if we were willing — a little more about the awesome power of God.

Before nuclear physics

For most of his approximately 6,000 years on earth, man has been surprisingly ignorant about the true nature of his surroundings. The ancient civilizations of Egypt, Greece and Rome made some progress in science. But after the fifth century, man’s knowledge hardly advanced for 1,000 years.

During the Dark Ages, science, magic and witchcraft were considered to be much the same thing. Such scientists as there were wasted their time trying to find the elixir of life or a way to turn lead into gold. They thought the earth was flat and that angels pushed the sun and stars around it. Superstition rather than science guided men’s thinking.

Then, in the middle of the 16th century, knowledge began to expand rapidly again. Navigators discovered that they could sail around the world without falling off. Copernicus showed that the earth was not the center of the universe, but just another planet in orbit around the sun. Galileo’s experiments in astronomy and physics challenged some ideas that had remained unchanged (and wrong) since the days of Aristotle.

The English scientist Sir Isaac Newton demonstrated how physical phenomena could be measured and quantified. He made it possible for scientists to build on their discoveries, rather than conduct isolated experiments. Newton realized there was a system of law governing gravity, mass, force, acceleration and motion. This laid the groundwork for the advances that made our modern world possible.

For two centuries nobody seriously questioned the validity of Newton’s laws. In the 18th and 19th centuries it was considered indisputable that physical matter (the elements) and energy (heat and light) were separate entities that could neither be created nor destroyed. The amount of matter and the amount of energy in the universe were presumed fixed.

Matter could change its form through chemical reaction. Energy could also change — heat into light, for example. But matter could not turn into energy or vice versa. Or so they thought.

The theory of relativity

It was Albert Einstein who first understood that this was not totally true. He put forward a theory that predicted that physical matter and energy were not separate — that they were, in a sense, interchangeable. Matter could be transformed into energy, and energy could be transformed into matter.

This “theory of relativity” rocked the scientific world. This article is no place to try to explain in detail these incredibly complicated ideas. But Dr. Einstein summed them up with the now famous equation E = mc2 (where E = energy, m = mass and c = the speed of light, which is about 186,000 miles a second). What this means is that if you can transform physical matter into energy, the amount of energy produced is equal to the mass of the matter times the speed of light multiplied by itself (i.e., 186,000 x 186,000).

You don’t need to be a genius to realize that if this line of reasoning is true, even a small amount of matter can produce an astonishing amount of energy.

Splitting the atom

But how do you turn matter into energy? To do this, you would have to literally split the atom — or, to be specific, the nucleus of the atom. And that is easier said than done.

Scientists had shown that the atom, once thought to be the smallest possible particle of matter, is composed of even smaller, subatomic particles — neutrons, protons and electrons among them. The protons and neutrons make up a central core or nucleus of an atom, while the electrons whirl around the nucleus rather like the planets orbit the sun, only much faster — billions of times in a millionth of a second. (The makeup of the atom is actually even more complex than this, but this will serve to make the point.)

These components of the atom each have an electrical charge — negative, positive or neutral. The electrons whirling around in orbit have a negative charge. The nucleus is made of neutrons, which have a neutral charge, and protons, which have a positive charge.

Think of these charges like the opposite poles of a magnet and you’ll get the idea. If you have played with magnets, you’ve discovered that like poles repel each other, while opposite poles attract. It’s the same with electrical charges.

So, since the nucleus of an atom is made up of neutral neutrons and positively charged protons, what stops the protons from repelling each other — or, in other words, why doesn’t an atom’s nucleus fly apart? (Again, think of it as trying to hold the like poles of two powerful magnets together. It takes a surprising amount of strength, and as soon as you let up, the magnets immediately push themselves away from each other.)

There must be a force that counteracts the repelling power of the protons and binds them together in the nucleus. Physicists call this the “strong force.”

It is indeed so strong that, for centuries, nobody even suspected its existence. So firm was its grip on the core of the atom that no force available to man could even begin to persuade it to let go. Thus it was hardly surprising that scientists thought the atom was the smallest possible division of matter.

In the 19th century it was discovered that some elements had a strange property. They gave off radiation — or, as we say now, were radioactive. Physicists realized that the atoms of these elements were slowly disintegrating. It happened very slowly — so slowly and unobtrusively that for thousands of years nobody even suspected it.

Strange, isn’t it? For millennia, alchemists had wasted their time trying to turn one element into another, yet here it was happening naturally under their noses all the time. Uranium, for example, given enough time, will decay down to lead, a nonradioactive element.

Experiments showed that when one element is transformed into another, not all of it is changed. A very small percentage of matter is changed into energy.

But if Einstein was right and E really did equal mc2, that still meant a lot of energy would be released as an atom decayed. Just before the Second World War, scientists learned how to speed up the decay by splitting the atom with a nuclear reactor, releasing the power in the atom.

When a radioactive element decays in nature, a small amount of energy is produced. For example, one pound of radioactive uranium gives as much energy as is produced by 5,000 pounds of gasoline. But it needs a thousand million years to do it. In a nuclear reactor (or a nuclear bomb) the atom is literally split in two. Much greater amounts of energy are released, suddenly and violently.

In the reaction that caused the devastation at Hiroshima, only about 1/1000th of the uranium was transformed into energy — about a 30th of an ounce.

Think of the power that was locked into that speck of matter, when it was transformed into heat and radiation! And that was a very small bomb.

A hydrogen bomb is many times more powerful than an atomic bomb. It takes an atomic explosion to produce enough energy to start the reaction.

But when the reaction does take place, it is with a flash of light brighter than the sun. Millions of degrees of heat are generated. That is why it is called a thermonuclear reaction. With the making of the hydrogen bomb, man has actually succeeded in duplicating the force that drives the sun.

The incredible sun

Look up at the sun. What you are seeing is a continuous chain of nuclear explosions in a reaction of unimaginable power. The sun is actually a giant thermonuclear reactor. It is composed mainly of hydrogen that is gradually changing into helium. Deep inside the sun’s core tremendous gravitational forces, 250 billion times those of earth, compress hydrogen atoms until the heat and pressure force a thermonuclear reaction to take place.

Energy released is thrust toward the surface, but the sun’s great mass pulls it back. It may take up to 15 million years for the energy to jostle its way through to the surface and escape as heat and radiation.

Scientists estimate that nearly four million tons of hydrogen are transformed into energy every second in the nuclear holocaust on our sun. (Remember, it took only a 30th of an ounce to destroy Hiroshima.)

And then stop and think about this: Our sun is only one star in our galaxy of 100 million stars. And there are probably 100 million other galaxies, each with another 100 million stars. That makes — oh, never mind. The point is that there is an almost inconceivable amount of power locked up in this awesome universe that surrounds us.

God made that universe by and out of His own power. “For He commanded and they were created,” the Bible tells us (Psalm 148:5).

The power of God

How can we even begin to comprehend the power that God has available? How much energy had to be held together to forge the atoms of even the most commonplace and seemingly insignificant of God’s creations — a sparrow, a spider or a leaf?

If all the energy compacted in a gram of matter could be released, it would supply as much energy as the Hoover Dam produces in about 18 and a half hours. Put another way, the matter in a 150-pound person, if converted completely to energy, would supply as much energy as Hoover Dam could produce in 144 years.

Yet God made giant stars 1,000 times the size of our sun! Can we ever begin to appreciate just how great God is? No wonder He could never allow mortal man to see the full power that radiates from Him. Nothing made of flesh and blood could survive that experience.

But God has, through His creation, given us hints, mere suggestions, of the immensity of His power. “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they [those who don’t or won’t believe in God] are without excuse,” wrote Paul (Romans 1:20).

The physical things God has made can teach us — if we have eyes to see. But, sad to say, many scientists today have rejected the very idea of God.

Never before have they known so much about the universe. Never before has there been more reason to believe in a Creator. Not so long ago, sailors were afraid to sail over the horizon for fear they would fall off the earth. Now we travel into space routinely, discovering, measuring, analyzing and quantifying. And every breakthrough leads inexorably toward one conclusion — that there must have been a time when all that we see began.

But that implies a Creator, and that is something that many scientists cannot — or will not — admit. And so they “became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened” (verse 21).

Perhaps if scientists had been willing to acknowledge the awesome power of God, they would never have dared tamper with those forces that bind the universe together.

In God’s hands, those forces are under control and are used only to do good. He has carefully regulated the inferno on the sun so that it makes life possible on earth.

But what has man done with nuclear power? Certainly there have been numerous peaceful industrial applications, although some argue that even these are hazardous. But our potential to split the atom is also lurking in the warheads of the weapons that will destroy all life if they ever are used.

Those weapons may be even more destructive than we dare think. President Truman threatened a “rain of ruin” on Japan. He didn’t know then that those relatively little bombs were paving the way for a possible nuclear winter that would eventually eliminate those who survived the initial blasts of nuclear bombs.

While the human heart is ruled by anger, lust and greed, it would be wiser to leave the “basic power of the universe” alone.

But it’s too late now. Once the first atomic bomb went off successfully, the die was cast. A chain reaction began. The bombs got bigger, and Bible prophecy tells us that man will use the principle of E = mc2 to batter the earth to the point where it can no longer sustain life.

Then, and only then, will the people of this world look out to the heavens and ask once again, “My God, what have we done?” 

Psalm 19

King Davis stated in Psalm 19: “The law of God is perfect, converting the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure… the statutes of the Lord are right… the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes… by them Your servant is warned, and in keeping them there is great reward” (Psalm 19:7-11).

David knew that God rules His Kingdom and regulates His power with the great law of love. Before humans can inherit God’s Kingdom, they must show that they will live in obedience to that law. Only then can God be sure that the great reserves of power will always be used for good and peaceful purposes.

So God watches us now, while we are still relatively powerless, to see how we live. He expects us to take seriously even the smallest details of His law, which is far more binding than even the strong force that holds the earth together, or the power that constrains the energy locked in the stars. “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away,” said Jesus Christ (Luke 21:33).

King David believed that. And so, when this righteous king looked into the heavens, he was filled with longing for the time when he could share that splendor as a born child of God. But he knew he had to qualify, and he knew he needed help. So he prayed, “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my strength and my redeemer” (Psalm 19:14).

God did help David. He gave him power — not the power of the atom, but the even greater power of the Holy Spirit. He began the greatest reaction process of all — the transformation of the very nature of David. One day, David will be resurrected in power and glory.

God will do the same for you. He will share His Spirit with you — just a little, for now. But you must use it properly — to overcome, to obey God’s law, to do good and serve others.

Then one day, you, too, will be welcomed by the great Creator God into His Kingdom, to live with Him in full brilliance and majesty and share His awesome power forever.

Source: Good News, 1985

August 1, 2009

The Earth: A Perfect Spot For Viewing The Cosmos

Editors Comment: A beautifully written column on the greatness of the cosmos and our view of it in the perfect spot of our galaxy. The article is originally from the Trumpet.com.

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Some folks saw a black sunrise last Wednesday. The Gulf of Khambhat, just east of India, experienced an unusual total solar eclipse at sunup. (For an idea of what it looked like, click here.) It lasted 6 minutes, 39 seconds, the longest eclipse of the sun projected to occur this century.

It’s extraordinary that our gargantuan sun—864,300 miles in diameter, 332,840 times the Earth’s mass—can be visually obscured by the moon, which is a tiny two tenths of 1 percent of its size. But the relative distances of these two heavenly bodies from Earth, coupled with their unusually exquisite roundness, make the perfect solar eclipse possible.

This has proven quite helpful to scientists who are trying to unriddle the mysteries of the universe. Hundreds of years ago, a perfect eclipse helped observers confirm that stars are composed of gas. More recently, an eclipse helped verify the theory of relativity, showing that light is bent by the sun’s gravity. That we see a perfect eclipse (rather than a super-eclipse, in which our moon would completely obscure the sun) gave us our first glimpses of the sun’s gaseous chromosphere, which has yielded additional insights about stars.

Aren’t we lucky?

No other planet has the perfect configuration of sun and moon sizes and relative distances to view a perfect solar eclipse that enables astronomical observations such as we can make on Earth, this jewel of a planet.

But this is only one of several unique physical conditions that make our study of the heavens possible, and so richly rewarding.

Case in point: We can’t see our air. Imagine how motivated you would be to contemplate the night sky if all you saw was a canopy of impenetrably thick clouds of particles and gasses. Happy for us, Earth’s atmosphere is transparent. Not only is our oxygen-rich air necessary for life, its invisibility also happens to make gazing up at the stars a whole lot more interesting and informative than would be the case on most planets.

Another favorable circumstance: our position within our galaxy. The Milky Way is an incomprehensible 100,000 light years across, and we sit in its slim “galactic habitable zone” (ghz)—just far enough from the center that we’re not killed by radiation, but just close enough that sufficient heavy elements needed for life are present. At the same time, our position is a perfect seat for viewing the rest of the cosmos.

Why? Many reasons. For one, it is so beautifully dark here. Light can be the enemy of astronomical discovery—for basically the same reason that you want the lights off in the theater while watching a movie. Conveniently, our solar system is in the darkest part of the galaxy’s ghz, far from all the Milky Way’s brightest lights. We live almost exactly halfway between two of the Milky Way’s spiral arms, which are crowded with radiant stars and thick dust clouds that would obscure our view. Our vision is also free of any nearby gaseous nebulae. We likewise live thousands of light years away from the galaxy’s many blinding star clusters. In his book Why the Universe Is the Way It Is, Dr. Hugh Ross explains how the same cosmic dust that shields us from the radiation emanating from the galactic core “also blocks out most of the blazingly bright light shining from the thousands of dense star clusters situated in the core that otherwise would ruin astronomers’ efforts to explore the universe.”

Making matters even more favorable, the Milky Way happens to be in the darkest habitable area of its galaxy cluster. While a typical galaxy cluster has over 10,000 tightly packed galaxies, ours has only about 40, all but two of which (one being the Milky Way) are small or dwarf galaxies. On top of that, our galaxy cluster, called the Local Group, is in the darkest habitable part of its supercluster of galaxies, the Virgo supercluster.

Thus, there is virtually nothing in the way of our peering deep into the outer reaches of the cosmos.

Another convenient feature of our cosmic vantage point is how protected we are from potential collision events. The four gas giant planets in our solar system—Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune—do us a big favor by shielding Earth from dangerous space projectiles like asteroids and comets. Their gravitational pull tends to absorb or deflect the most dangerous of these colliders. Yet they’re not too efficient: The few smaller asteroids that have made it through and hit Earth have actually aided in scientific discovery without wiping humans out. (It’s also worth noting that these huge planets are not so close as to block or wash out our view of space. If gigantic Jupiter resided where Mars currently does, it would be 1,550 times brighter to us than it is now.)

The more scientists learn about the universe, the more of these outstandingly helpful conditions they identify. “For some reason our Earthly location is extraordinarily well suited to allow us to peer into the heavens and discover its secrets,” say the grateful astronomers who authored The Privileged Planet. A host of finely tuned factors “are not only necessary for Earth’s habitability; they also have been surprisingly crucial for scientists to measure and make discoveries about the universe. Mankind is unusually well positioned to decipher the cosmos.”

Scientists have come to refer to Earth as a “Goldilocks planet.” That is, in every conceivable way, conditions aren’t too hot or too cold, too large or too small, too close or too far—too anything. No matter what is measured, it is “just right.” Not only for the existence of life, but also for discovery. And to a mind-boggling level of precision. Even the minutest deviation would make cosmic observation difficult or impossible—or would wipe out the prospect of life.

Maybe it’s not luck after all.

A growing number of astronomers are acknowledging the possibility not only that the precise conditions for life on Earth were specifically, painstakingly established by a creative mind of extraordinary intelligence—but also that this Power ensured we would be able to follow the signs back to their source. The multiplicity and exactitude of these signs “reflects masterful engineering at a level far beyond human capability—and even imagination. It testifies of a supernatural, superintelligent, superpowerful, fully deliberate Creator,” wrote Dr. Ross.

Yes it does. As King David wrote, “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork” (Psalm 19:1). He was celebrating the fact that God revealed Himself to us in the universe He created. Perhaps he knew more than today’s astronomers would give him credit for.

God wanted us to make these cosmic discoveries. Romans 1:20 says that “Ever since the creation of the world his invisible nature, namely, his eternal power and deity, has been clearly perceived in the things that have been made” (Revised Standard Version). It is there for everyone to see—and more and more as our technology improves. All we need to do is open our eyes and acknowledge its Author.

“Clearly, Someone wanted human beings to exist and thrive. Just as clearly, Someone wanted us to see all He had done in the universe,” Dr. Ross continued. “His purposes for human existence must be highly valuable.”

June 1, 2009

Could The Universe Contain An "Uncountable" Number Of Stars?

From time immemorial, man has been fascinated by the beautiful, and awesome spectacle of the stars of heaven. Many centuries before the birth of Jesus, David observed that “the heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament showeth his handywork” (Psa. 19:1).

Even today, the seeming myriads of stars and nebulae continue to be a breathtaking and inspiring panoply. Yet at any given time, despite one’s initial impression, the actual number of stars distinguished by the naked eye is less than 3000. This means that you could easily count them all in less than an hour!

By contrast, the Bible states in Jeremiah 33:22 that “the host of heaven CANNOT BE NUMBERED.” During the thousands. of years before Galileo’s invention of the telescope, such a statement was considered to be either false or at least a gross exaggeration. The stars uncountable? The universe, they said, was too small to contain that many stars!

However, astronomers have estimated that there are billions of billions of stars in the visible universe. More specifically, astronomers estimate that their number is equal to 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 or one sextillion. Is this an “uncountable” number?

To find out, let’s suppose that every man, woman, and child on the face of the earth were employed in an “all-out” effort to count the stars. Every, person is given a giant telescope, capable of “seeing” all the stars in the direction it is pointed. Each telescope is limited to a certain part of the sky so that no star will be counted twice. Further, the sun is darkened so that the stars can be seen even during “daylight” hours. When the signal is given, everyone on earth begins counting — quickly — each person recording one new star every second. They work diligently hour after hour with no periods of rest. How long would it take to “count” the stars of heaven? A day? A week? A month?

No, it would take everyone on earth — over 8 thousand years to count the stars in the visible universe. But 8000 years is longer than man has been on the earth! So the term “uncountable” is indeed a very appropriate description of the number of stars, in the observable universe.

But is the number of stars literally “uncountable” in the sense of there being “infinitely many”? Some have assumed that if the term “cannot be numbered” is taken literally, then the Bible must be unscientific. They reason that astronomy knows only of an estimated sextillion stars — and that is a finite number and, hence, countable.

Ironically, the assumption that there is only a finite number of stars is often based on the Biblical statements that “God tells the number of the stars and calls them all by their names”. (Psa. 147:4) and “God brings out their host by number” (Isa. 40:26). These scriptures supposedly “prove” the universe is finite, for “even GOD could not give names to an INFINITE number of stars.” Actually, the fact is, that ALL objects in an infinite set may STILL have a “name.” For example, all the natural numbers (1, 2, 3, 4 ..) have a “name,” even though they comprise an infinity. Furthermore, the infinite mind of God would surely be capable of assigning names to an infinite number of stars. Thus, the Scriptures do not claim that the universe can only have a finite number of stars.

Moreover, astronomers readily admit that they cannot determine if there are “infinitely many” stars, because man is limited to observing the visible universe. Note that the size of the visible universe is NOT determined by how large a telescope man can build. Rather, it is determined — according to most astronomers — by a fascinating property of the universe itself! No matter where in the heavens astronomers look, they find the stars and galaxies “retreating” from us. The farther away these celestial objects are, the faster they appear to be traveling.

Now light reaching us from a receding object “looks” redder (lower frequency) just as the pitch of a train whistle drops in frequency as the train passes us by. Scientists know that at a certain velocity (near that of light itself, i.e., 186,000 miles per second) this “red shift” will be so great that man cannot detect any light coming from the object — not with his eyes, not with any known instrument — even using the largest telescopes available.

In other words, there are certain absolute limits beyond which physical man cannot go — and one of these is the boundary of the limit of detection of the visible universe. What is on the “other side” of this boundary? What lies beyond the limits of man’s perception? Man as a physical being does not know.

Yet there is a Great Plan by which man can know the size and scope the vast, unfathomable expanses of the universe — a plan instituted by the very Being who created the heaven and the earth (Gen. 1:1), who designed the lights of the firmament to divide day and night and to serve as signs for seasons, days and years (Gen. 1:14), who calls the stars by their names (Psalms 147:4), and whose understanding is infinite (Psalms 147:5; Isa 40:28).

No, the universe is not “too small” to contain an “uncountable” number of stars. In fact, even if the universe were much “smaller,” it would still be humanly impossible to count or number all the stars. And considering the possibility that the universe may be infinite, what better description could one give than that there is, as the Bible states, an innumerable number of stars?

Source: Tomorrow’s World, October 1971

May 6, 2009

Invasion From Outer Space: Truth Stranger Than Science Fiction!

On October 30, 1938, several hundred thousand Americans experienced the most shattering scare of their lives. The Columbia Broadcasting System was airing its regular program, Mercury Theatre on the Air. The music of Ramon Raquello and his orchestra was suddenly interrupted by the terse voice of an announcer stating that several explosions of incandescent gas had been observed on the planet Mars. The gas was said to be hydrogen and moving toward the earth with enormous velocity.

The regular musical broadcast was then resumed. Thousands remained glued to their radios awaiting further developments. They were not disappointed. Before long, the music was again interrupted for another bulletin. Still more announcements followed. Authentic sounding reports were coming in from observatories around the nation. Thousands, perhaps millions, of minds were now focused on the red planet.

The announcer then stated that a meteorite had fallen on a farm in the neighborhood of Grovers Mill, New Jersey.
What could it be? Thousands tingled with excitement. Reports continued to come in. “Mobile units” were dispatched and listeners were treated to “on the spot” reports.

A vast pit was said to have been created by what appeared to be a large cylinder which had fallen from space. The cylinder was apparently made of some strange yellowish-white metal and was described as being some thirty yards in diameter!

Hundreds of automobiles began to converge on the site, beaming their headlights directly into the pit with its strange visitor. Shortly, a curious “humming sound” was said to have emanated from the confines of this bizarre space vehicle. Before long, the end of the cylinder began to slowly unscrew. A gasp went up from the surrounding crowd as the end of the cylinder fell off.

By now the vast CBS radio audience was on the edge of its collective chair as they anxiously awaited further developments. What was inside the sinister cylinder? Shortly, the announcer’s voice again crackled across the airways. He breathlessly described the emergence of a nightmarish creature “large as a bear” with tentacles and a hide that “glistened like wet leather.” The crowd that had gathered at the pit fell back in terror.

Radio listeners were then subjected to the sound of hissing followed by intensified humming coming through their speakers. The broadcaster then described a sinister machine that was rising out of the pit commanded by the hideous creature. Without warning, a jet of flame sprang from a mirror mounted atop the eldritch machine. Dozens died as they were hit by the searing heat-ray. Fields, barns, woods turned to flame. The holocaust spread rapidly. Automobile gas tanks exploded. Death and destruction were everywhere.

The Great Hoax

Of course, such an invasion never actually took place. The whole thing was phony. It was all carefully planned by the now-famous actor Orson Welles and scripted by the ingenious writer, Howard Koch. Welles narrated the broadcast with such convincing effectiveness that millions had thought that the Martians were really on the march! Near panic had seized the vast radio audience. The broadcast became the most famous and perhaps most notorious script in the history of radio.

But it wasn’t all Welles’ original idea. Nor did Howard Koch dream up the invasion. It had all originated with another, Wells — H. G.

How It All Began

In 1898, the English novelist H. G. Wells made literary history with his novel War of the Worlds. It was the first serious treatment of the space-invasion theme. Since that time, his War of the Worlds has set the pattern for thousands of space-invasion stories.

Today, the concept of the alien invasion has become one of the richest and most varied of all the categories of science fiction. Since Welles’ broadcast in 1938, thousands of such tales have emanated from the fertile minds of science-fiction writers. Multiple possibilities have been explored.

But in spite of the colorful variety of situations and characters encountered in space invasion stories, certain factors are common to most. For example, you can almost always bank on the invader being of superior intelligence to man. His technology is usually developed to a high degree of sophistication. The typical aliens’ mental powers often border on the supernatural. Telepathy and ESP are frequently discussed.

Methods of transportation are rarely conventional from an earthlings viewpoint. The invaders move about in glass bubbles, mysterious saucers and disks, tripods and bizarre rockets. Time machines and teleportation are frequently used devices. The sky is rarely the limit in this area.

And the invaders weaponry would chill the soul of any human general. Strange rays and beams pierce the earth’s atmosphere dealing death and doom everywhere they strike. Man’s weapons are traditionally helpless against the superior armaments of the invading alien.

But why do the invaders invade? Frequently it is to colonize the earth and set up a government of extraterrestrial beings.

Usually, the alien conquest is successful until the eleventh hour. Then some freak occurrence brings defeat to the invading beings and the earthlings triumph.

At least that’s the usual formula. And with one notable exception, it’s not too far from the truth of what actually is going to happen!

A Real Invasion Coming

Science fiction is one of the most popular forms of modern literature. It is read by millions. Movies, television series, comic books, magazines, all contribute to the public consumption of science-fiction themes. Isaac Asimov, the noted writer, once stated that science fiction is “the only kind of literature that fits this age.”

But Asimov is wrong.

Science fiction is a combination of the known and the unknown. There is another form of literature that is even more relevant to this day and age and which is strictly limited to that which may be known. It does not dabble in speculation or far-out imaginings. And it is far more meaningful to this age than any science fiction that has ever been written!
It is called the Bible.

Now wait! Don’t go shrieking off into some philosophical solar system! Let’s give it an honest look first.

The Bible is not a book of fiction. It is a book of facts. It contains history written in advance of its occurrence. It is a volume of revealed knowledge, impossible for mankind to arrive at by conventional means. It is the Maker’s

Instruction Book — the Word of God.

The Book contains an account of a coming invasion from space that will far eclipse all such fictional invasions envisioned by men. And, more amazing, its writing was inspired by the Invader Himself! (II Tim. 3:16.) Surprisingly enough, this invasion will also fit the formula (with a few noteworthy exceptions!) for all such invasions as envisioned by science-fiction writers.  Let’s look into it.

Details of the Invasion

Does anyone know precisely when this invasion will take place? No!
“But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father” (Mark 13:32).

No human knows exactly when the predicted invasion will occur. Only the great Master-Mind of the universe — God the Father — knows.

But don’t forget. Mark wrote in the first century A.D.!

Nearly 2000 years have elapsed since these words were originally spoken. The situation could be different now! Perhaps plans are even now being drawn up for the certain arrival of the Son of God and His army.

The Nature of the Invader

Will the coming invader be human? In Numbers 23:19 we find that “God is not a man.” He is not human!
Well, what is He then? “God is a Spirit,” answers John 4:24.  God is not a mere mortal. He is a supernatural spirit being! And as such, God is of markedly superior intelligence. (What Creator is not superior to His creation?)

Notice Isaiah 55:8-9: “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are my ways your ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
God thinks and operates on an entirely different plane than does man — a much higher plane. Read the book of Job (chapter 38; 40:1-2). Gain a small glimpse into the mental capacity of God! Enough said.

The Return of Jesus Christ

Biblical revelation tells us that a powerful, super-intelligent spirit being will eventually invade this earth. But from what point in the universe will the invasion be launched? The Scriptures are specific. “… Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels” (II Thess. 1:7).

Here we see the returning Christ leaving heaven and being revealed to the naked eye of those on the earth (Rev. 1:7). Heaven is the residence of God — the Master Control Center of Operations for the entire universe.

But where is heaven?

The Word of God speaks of three distinct “heavens.” The first is the atmosphere surrounding the earth. The second is the known universe containing the galaxies, solar systems, etc. But there is a third heaven. The Apostle Paul referred to it in II Corinthians 12:2. He was explaining how he had been taken there in a vision (verses 1, 7) so vivid that he was unable to discern (at the time) whether his experience had been actual or merely visionary.
This heaven is the present residence of God and His angelic army. “… For God is in heaven …” (Eccl. 5:2).

Spirit Space Travel

A careful analysis of the twentieth chapter of John reveals that Jesus Christ and His angelic host are capable of extremely rapid space travel — faster than the speed of light!

Christ said to Mary Magdalene: “Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father …” (John 20:17). Now note that on the same day Christ had been able to travel to the Father and return: “And as they went to tell his disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, All hail. And they came and held him by the feet …” (Matt. 28:9).

Spirit, of course, is not hampered by the constraints of the material universe. But just how does God normally travel throughout the universe? Does He utilize some special vehicle or does he simply “free fall” through space?
In the book of Ezekiel we are given a hair-raising glimpse of a bizarre vehicle. Read the entire first chapter of the book of Ezekiel for yourself.

See if you can figure it out! This strange vehicle with its wheels and multicolored precious-stone ornaments is occupied by a Being “like” a man. Its crew is made up of spirit beings called angels. It appears to be a portable throne which is conducted throughout the universe by spirit power!

The last half of Revelation 19 pictures Christ’s second coming to this earth. His space flight is symbolically shown to be on a white horse. His angelic army is also symbolically descending upon white horses (Rev. 19:11-15). In reality, He may actually use the means of transport pictured in Ezekiel 10.

But, whatever the means, when is the general time setting of His second coming? Many scriptures show it will occur in what the Bible describes as “the end time.”

When Is the End Time?

We have already seen that no human can know the day or hour of His second coming. Jesus Himself, however, revealed that His servants can discern the general time period. “Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: so likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things [the signs described in Matthew 24], know that it [Christ’s second coming] is near, even at the doors” (Matt. 24:32-33).

The question is: Are we in that time period shown in Matthew 24? Are we in the end time? Are the sure signs of this prophecy occurring all around us today? The answers should be clear!

Source: The Good News, November 1973

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