Board index Extraterrestrial Life and Aliens

Life on other planets, visitations from outer space, and theology.

What implications does alien life have for Christianity?

Postby The Dark Side » Tue Jul 07, 2020 1:30 pm

What implications does alien life have for Christianity?
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Re: What implications does alien life have for Christianity?

Postby jimwalton » Sat Nov 19, 2022 3:24 pm

I don't happen to think aliens exist, but if we found out they did, it wouldn't do anything to my faith. Christianity is fine with or without them. What astrophsycists are currently telling us is that if we find life elsewhere in the universe in reach of our tools, it would likely be microscopic and more like a virus than anything else. It wouldn't shake my faith in the least. God's sovereignty and power are certainly not limited to this small planet.

The odds of discovering intelligent alien beings is so very small as to be virtually impossible. Knowing the principles of physics, the speed of light, universal constants, and the numerous obstacles to traveling the universe, if there were intelligent life out there (1) we could never get to them, (2) they could never get to us, and (3) even communication over those vast reaches of space is beyond our technology. As Stephen Hawking warned, however, if there really were a civilization that advanced that would be capable of reaching us and staying in communication with their home, we should be far more afraid than excited.

Here are a few points of interest.

1. The discovery intelligent alien beings would not make the Bible irrelevant. The Bible is about God's revelation of himself to Earth's population, but the reach of Scripture is cosmic in scope (Col. 3.16). Whether or not there are intelligent aliens, the Bible's claims of God's sovereignty over all creation includes them.

2. Genesis, and the whole Bible for that matter, is geocentric. The writer wasn't speaking of life anywhere else, and that's OK.

3. The discovery of such beings would not reduce human significance. Science is not a good tool for evaluating human significance anyway. Human beings are embedded in God's story as significant. The discovery of other population groups would not change that truth.

4. The discovery of intelligent aliens would not change our view of God's incarnation in Jesus. It happened in our earthly history; we know that God took on human form on Earth, regardless of what other life may exist elsewhere.

5. The discovery of intelligent aliens would not change our view of Jesus's death on the cross. Christ died to redeem human sin. We trust that God would deal with aliens in appropriate ways: (a) maybe they are not sinful and don't need redemption; (b) maybe they sinned and God revealed to them a way for them to have relationship with Him; (c) maybe they sinned, but God revealed to them Christ's redemptive work on Earth; (d) maybe they sinned, and God appear in their worlds to deal with it. In any case, none of it changes what Jesus did for us.

The discovery of life elsewhere in the universe wouldn't have any effect on my faith. It neither shakes my faith nor disproves the Bible. We have to follow truth wherever it leads. If there's life elsewhere in the universe, then there is. I would have to assume that God has provided some mechanism to reveal himself there as He has here.
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Re: What implications does alien life have for Christianity?

Postby Mindcraft » Thu Jul 27, 2023 9:32 am

Why don't you think aliens exist?
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Re: What implications does alien life have for Christianity?

Postby jimwalton » Thu Jul 27, 2023 9:33 am

I suggested my answer to this question in my post. I will copy and paste it here for further discussion.

"The odds of discovering intelligent alien beings is so very small as to be virtually impossible. Knowing the principles of physics, the speed of light, universal constants, and the numerous obstacles to traveling the universe, if there were intelligent life out there (1) we could never get to them, (2) they could never get to us, and (3) even communication over those vast reaches of space is beyond our technology."

So I think that the prospect of alien life is so small it can be considered impossible. But if there is alien life, the odds of our knowledge of it is so small it can be considered impossible.
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Re: What implications does alien life have for Christianity?

Postby Mindcraft » Thu Jul 27, 2023 9:41 am

This is terrific irony.
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Re: What implications does alien life have for Christianity?

Postby jimwalton » Tue Aug 08, 2023 6:57 am

How so?


Last bumped by Anonymous on Tue Aug 08, 2023 6:57 am.
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