Bad Design?

By: Mark Tabata (Evangelist)

One of the most often used arguments used by atheists goes something like this:

“If the universe was designed by an infinitely perfect Creator, then He did a pretty lousy job! There are many examples of things in the universe that could be a lot better, and so this shows us that there really isn’t a Creator.”

This argument has become very popular in the last several years, being propagated by unbelievers like Richard Dawkins.

Yet is this true?

Does the universe exhibit evidences of bad design?

And if so, do these examples of bad design argue against the existence of God?

Let’s study.   Continue reading Bad Design?

Is There A God? A NASA Scientist Weighs In

By: Mark Tabata (Evangelist)

Introduction

Leslie Wickman, Ph.D., is a very fascinating woman!

She is a corporate test astronaut, a rocket scientist, and a Hubble Space Telescope engineer. In March of 2014, after the possible discovery of gravity waves in the cosmic microwave background radiation, Leslie was invited by CNN to write an editorial on the question, “Does The Big Bang Breakthrough Offer Proof Of God?” Shortly thereafter, she was invited by Worthy Publishing to write a book on that topic. She accepted, and her book, God Of The Big Bang: How Modern Science Affirms The Creator, soon became a reality.

In this article, I would like to carefully consider her book, as it offers many unique contributions to the field of Christian Apologetics. So often I hear it proclaimed by angry atheists, “Real scientists don’t believe in God!” Sadly, many people believe this rhetoric: yet as I have learned through nearly three decades of research, real science lands one directly at the feet of the Creator: and many scientists recognize and affirm this!  Continue reading Is There A God? A NASA Scientist Weighs In

Twelve Scientific Reasons To Reject Darwinism

By: Mark Tabata (Evangelist)

Many of the people that I am blessed to study with have been taught most of their lives (through the public school system and via media) that life began as a mixture of chemicals in the distant past which then somehow “evolved” through various lifeforms and stages to become what we now are.  

This philosophy, popularized by a gentleman named Charles Darwin, has become a significant contributor in our day and age to atheism, I.e., the belief system which states that there is no Creator God-and that, accordingly, life had no real purpose or goal.

One scientist points out the inevitable result of acceptance of Darwinistic evolution:

““. . . the human species was not designed, has no purpose, and is the product of mere material mechanisms . . . this seems to be the message of evolution.” (Douglas J. Futuyma, “Science on Trial: The Case for Evolution,” 1983, p. 13)

On the other hand, a growing number of scientists have been turning away from Darwinism and to belief in a Creator due to the findings of modern science which show that the universe is extremely complex and must have been designed.  

For example, Professor Paul Davies has written:

““There is for me powerful evidence that there is something going on behind it all . . . It seems as though somebody has fine-tuned nature’s numbers to make the Universe . . . the impression of design is overwhelming.” (Professor Paul Davies, “The Cosmic Blueprint: New Discoveries in Nature’s Creative Ability to Order the Universe,” 1988 p. 203.)

Recently, Dr. John Ashton wrote a fascinating book in which he highlights several of the scientific evidences which clearly document the impossibility of Darwinism. He writes:

“However, 12 substantial reasons for rejecting evolution gleaned from the evidence in the previous chapters could be summarized as follows: Mutations do not produce new purposeful genetic information. Evolution of a new species as a result of new genetic code arising has never been observed. There is no known proven mechanism that can explain how new purposeful genetic information could arise, and statistically it is impossible. There is no known proven mechanism that can explain all the steps for a living cell to form from nonliving molecules (abiogenesis), and statistically it is impossible. Abiogenesis has never been observed and all experiments to initiate it have failed. The fossil record is a record of extinction of fully formed animals and plants not a record of the evolution of life forms. There are no fossils of proven mutant evolutionary intermediate organisms, yet there should be millions and millions of fossils of such mutations. That is, we have no evidence of actual evolution in the fossil record. Some of the oldest fossil-bearing rocks contain fully developed advanced animals such as trilobites, with no evidence of evolutionary ancestors. Erosion rates for the continents are too fast for the continents and their fossil content to be old enough for supposed evolution to occur. There are not enough ocean sediments or volcanic deposits for the continents to be old enough to allow for supposed evolution. Radiometric dating results give old ages for recent rock, so we cannot accurately “know” the age of rocks. Also, the finding of carbon-14 in coal and diamonds means that these deposits must be less than 100,000 years old, indicating insufficient time for supposed evolution. The rate of mutation of DNA currently observed suggests that DNA must be less than 100,000 years old, which is not enough time for supposed evolution. As I mentioned earlier, this list is far from exhaustive, but it is sufficient in my view to substantiate the assertion that evolution is impossible and never happened!” (Dr. John F. Ashton PhD-Adjunct Professor of Biomedical Sciences Victoria University-, Evolution Impossible: 12 Reasons Why Evolution Cannot Explain The Origin Of Life On Earth, 4616-4642 (Kindle Edition); Green Forest, AR; Master Books)

Ashton provides here twelve powerful examples of the evidences against Darwinistic evolution.

Indeed, it is these same types of evidences which are leading many scientists around the world to reject the theory of macroevolution and to embrace the worldview which the evidence is unmistakably pointing towards: theism (I.e., the existence of God).  

In Six Days

In another book, In Six Days: Why Fifty Scientists Choose To Believe In Creation, Ashton marshals evidences from an impressive array of scientists who similarly Reject Darwinian evolution and embrace scientific creationism: 

“Why would educated scientists still believe in creation? Why wouldn’t they prefer to believe in Darwinian evolution or even theistic evolution, where an all-powerful intelligence is seen as directing the evolutionary processes? Could scientists believe that life on earth is probably less than 10,000 years old? How would they deal with the evidence from the fossil record and the ages suggested by the radioactive dating of rocks as millions and billions of years old?…During the past century, the biblical story of Genesis was relegated to the status of a religious myth and it was widely held that only those uneducated in science or scientific methods would seriously believe such a myth. However, my experience in organizing this book is that there are a growing number of highly educated critically thinking scientists who have serious doubts about evidence for Darwinian evolution and who have chosen to believe in the biblical version of creation. In this book, 50 scientists explain their reasons for this choice. All the contributors have an earned doctorate from a state-recognized university in Australia, the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, South Africa, or Germany. They include university professors and researchers, geologists, zoologists, biologists, botanists, physicists, chemists, mathematicians, medical researchers, and engineers…Having reviewed the discussions posed by these scientists, in the light of my own education and experience, I am convinced that a literal understanding of the Genesis account of creation is the most reasonable explanation out of all the current theories of how we came to be here.” (Dr. John F. Ashton, PhD, In Six Days: Why Fifty Scientists Choose To Believe In Creation, 105-122 (Kindle Edition); Green Forest, AR; Master Books) 

On The Seventh Day

In yet another book, Ashton specifically asks several professionals, from a wide range of educational backgrounds, why they believe in God:

“Many scientists and academics, however, now teach that there is no supernatural God and that everything, including life, exists as a result of natural forces. In fact, there is a prevailing idea that this naturalism is part and parcel of science. This leaves no room for a supernatural God in our understanding of our existence. There is no God factor in our daily lives and no hope of having eternal life with God in heaven….In 1997 the leading science journal Nature published a survey of religious belief among scientists in the United States.2 The authors found that nearly 40 percent of the 1,000 scientists surveyed said they believed in a personal God —”a God in intellectual and effective communication with humankind, i.e., a God to whom one may pray in expectation of receiving an answer.” This survey shows that despite a prevailing popular belief to the contrary, many highly educated people do believe there is a personal, supernatural God. However, relatively little is known about the reasons such people believe and the experiences that have resulted from their faith….The purpose of this book is to reveal the diversity of reasons why highly educated university academics believe in God. It opens the debate over the existence of God to a wider audience —not with narrow and closed arguments but with a straightforward and wide-ranging analysis of the issues confronting both the scientific community and the general public. In this book, scientists and other academics explain their reasons for believing in a personal God. They include emeritus professors, heads of university departments, physicists, chemists, biologists, psychologists, engineers, medical researchers, and mathematicians.” (Dr. John F. Ashton, PhD, On the Seventh Day Forty Scientists and Academics Explain Why They Believe in God,105-135 (Kindle Edition); Green Forest, AR; Master Books)

Conclusion 

Friends, there are lots of reasons to reject the theory of evolution and to accept the fact that there is an eternal Creator!  
Furthermore, there is an abundance of evidence that this God has revealed Himself to mankind through the Bible. Several lines of evidence may be provided to demonstrate that the Bible is the inspired Word of God, as it claims to be (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

These evidences range from the supernatural unity of the Bible, prophecy and fulfillment, scientific foreknowledge of the Bible writers, and miraculous and archaeological attestation.  

The central message of the Bible is that God loved mankind, in spite of all of our sins and wickedness (Ezekiel 18:23). Because His perfect and holy wrath demanded punishment for sin, mankind faces the horrors of Hell-eternal separation from God (2 Thessalonians 1:7-10). Yet God loves us so very much, that He sent His Son Jesus Christ to die in our place (John 3:16; 1 Timothy 2:6).

By His death on the cross of Calvary, Jesus can now be the perf ft Mediator to reconcile all things in Heaven and Earth back to God (Colossians 1:15-23).

Jesus died for us, was buried, and arose from the dead on the third day (1 Corinthians 15:1-8). God has decreed that those who hear His Word, believe in Jesus Christ as the Son of God, repent of their sins, confess Him before men, and are baptized into Him we will receive the forgiveness of sins and the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:37-47; 8:35-8).  

If we are faithful to Him to death, we are promised the Home of Heaven (Revelation 2:10)!  

When we sin as Christians (as we will-1 John 1:8), God promises forgiveness if we will repent and confess our sins to Him in prayer (1 John 1:9).  

Friends, at the beginning of this article I pointed out that evolution can never provide answers as to why we exist. In conclusion, let me share this with you:

Ephesians 1:11 (Message)-It’s in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for.

Colossians 1:16 (Message)-We look at this Son and see God’s original purpose in everything created. For everything, absolutely everything, above and below, visible and invisible, rank after rank after rank of angels—everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him.

The grace is the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.  

Could It All Be By Chance?

By: Mark Tabata (Evangelist)

Several people I work with tell me, “Mark, we exist only because of chance. There is no God!”

I am sure that many have come to believe this through the influence of several sources: the public school system (even though there are godly teachers who refuse to propagate such nonsense), the media, public broadcasting, social networking, etc.  

Yet what do the facts of science actually show?  

Are we here by chance, or is there a Creator? 

One author, Stephen Joseph Williams, wrote a fascinating book entitled, What Your Atheist Professor Doesn’t Know (But Should): An Exploration Of The Implications Of Modern Science, Archaeology, History And Philosophy.

The book is a fascinating study of Christian Evidences.

In chapter two, he writes the following:

“The appearance that the universe was designed to support life on earth is overwhelming. Secular scientists have observed that for physical life to be possible in the universe, many characteristics must take on specific values, as referenced below. In the secular scientific world, this circumstance of apparent fine-tuning in the universe is not disputed, and is referred to as “The Anthropic Principle”. Atheistic scientists have offered several unconvincing rationalizations for this having occurred without the involvement of a Divine Mind, but given the intricacy of the inter-relationships between various features in the universe, the indication of divine “fine tuning” seems incontrovertible.” (Stephen Joseph Williams, What Your Atheist Professor Doesn’t Know (But Should): An Exploration Of The Implications Of Modern Science, Archaeology, History And Philosophy, 50-51 (Kindle Edition); RFH) 

Williams then goes on to provide a list of some 93 factors which must exist in a universe in order for life to exist.  
Yet he doesn’t stop there.  

“Not only is the universe at large apparently fine-tuned to support life, there is an array of features in our more local region of the universe that are also necessary to allow life to survive. The features of a planet, its planetary companions, its moon, its star, and its galaxy must have values falling within narrowly defined ranges (infinitesimally small targets, and all precisely coordinated) for physical life of any kind to exist.” (Stephen Joseph Williams, What Your Atheist Professor Doesn’t Know (But Should): An Exploration Of The Implications Of Modern Science, Archaeology, History And Philosophy, 60 (Kindle Edition); RFH) 

He then provides a list of 154 factors “locally” which make life possible, adding these words:

“Keep in mind that this list is always growing as new improbabilities are being discovered. According to Dr.’ s Ross and Rana, the improbability increases by about a million times each month!” (Stephen Joseph Williams, What Your Atheist Professor Doesn’t Know (But Should): An Exploration Of The Implications Of Modern Science, Archaeology, History And Philosophy, 119-120 (Kindle Edition); RFH) 

Taking all of these factors into account, is there a possibility that we are here by chance?  

“Since the threshold of mathematical impossibility is 1 in 10 to the 50th power (ie: given a 13.73 billion year universe, there is not enough time for anything with this or smaller odds to occur by chance), and the odds of this fine-tuning coming into existence by chance are far, far beyond that, we can rule out chance. Only a transcendent Creator makes sense of this unbelievably complex order in the universe. During the last 35 years or so, scientists have discovered that the existence of intelligent life absolutely depends upon this very delicate and complex balance of initial conditions. It appears that “the deck was stacked” in the substances, constants and quantities of the Big Bang itself, to provide a life-permitting universe. We now know through modern science that life-prohibiting universes are vastly more probable than any life-permitting universe like ours. How much more probable? Well, the answer is that the chances that the universe should be life-permitting are so infinitesimally small as to be incomprehensible and incalculable. For example, Stephen Hawking has estimated that if the rate of the universe’s expansion one second after the Big Bang had been smaller by even one part in a hundred thousand million million, the universe would have re-collapsed into a hot fireball due to gravitational attraction. (4) Physicist P.C.W. Davies has calculated that the odds against the initial conditions being suitable for star formation (without which planets could not exist) is one followed by at least a thousand billion billion zeroes! (5) Davies also calculates that a change in the strength of gravity or of the weak force by merely one part in 10 raised to the 100th power (!) would have prevented a life-permitting universe. (6) As we saw in the previous lists, there are dozens and dozens of such constants and quantities present in the Big Bang which must be exquisitely fine-tuned in this way if the universe is to permit life. Moreover, it’s not only each individual quantity or constant which must be finely tuned; their ratios to each other must also be exquisitely finely tuned. Therefore, vast improbability is multiplied by vast improbability, and yet again by vast improbability repeatedly until our minds are simply reeling in vanishingly small odds. There is no plausible physical reason why these constants and quantities should have the values that they do. Reflecting on this, the once-agnostic physicist P.C.W. Davies comments, “Through my scientific work I have come to believe more and more strongly that the physical universe is put together with an ingenuity so astonishing that I cannot accept it merely as a brute fact.” (7) Likewise, British Astrophysicist Sir Frederick Hoyle remarks, “A common sense interpretation of the facts suggests that a super-intellect has monkeyed with physics.” (8) Robert Jastrow, the head of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, refers to this as “the most powerful evidence for the existence of God ever to come out of science.” (9) So, again, the view that Christian theists have historically held, that there is an intelligent Designer of the universe, seems to make so much more sense than the atheistic alternative: that the universe, when it popped into being, without cause, out of nothing, just happened to be, by chance, fine-tuned for intelligent life with a mind-numbingly unlikely precision and delicacy. To call the odds against this fine-tuning occurring by chance “astronomical” would be a wild understatement.” (Stephen Joseph Williams, What Your Atheist Professor Doesn’t Know (But Should): An Exploration Of The Implications Of Modern Science, Archaeology, History And Philosophy, 121-124 (Kindle Edition); RFH) 

It’s no wonder that the famed Albert Einstein said:

“I’m not an atheist and I don’t think I can call myself a pantheist. The problem involved is too vast for our limited minds. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangement of the books but doesn’t know what that is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of the most intelligent human toward God.” (Isaacson, W. (2008). Einstein: His Life and Universe. New York: Simon and Schuster, p. 386

Friends, there is NO CHANCE that we are here by accident or by chance. The universe was created by the eternal God Who has revealed Himself to mankind through His wondrous creation: 

Romans 1:18-20-18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness,

19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them.

20 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 are without excuse,

We have all sinned against God by breaking His law (Romans 2:12-15), which is why God in mercy sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to save us (John 3:16). Jesus died for the sins of mankind, was buried, and arose from the dead on the third day after His death (1 Corinthians 15:1-8). He has decreed that all hear His Word (John 6:44-45), believe in Him as the Son of God (John 8:24), repent of their sins (Luke 13:3), confess Him as the Son of God (Acts 8:37), and are baptized into Him (Acts 22:16) will be saved by God and added to His church (Acts 2:47). If we are faithful to Him, even to the point of death, we will receive Heaven itself as our home (Revelation 2:10).

When we sin as Christians, we can be forgiven if we repent of those sins and confess them to God in prayer (1 John 1:9).  

Why not be baptized into Christ today? Or why not return to Him if you as a Christian have turned from Him in sin?

The churches of Christ stand ready to assist you.  

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.  

Could The God Of The Bible Be An Extraterrestrial? 

By: Mark Tabata (Evangelist)

I know that to many, the title of the current article will sound strange.  

However, the sad fact is, many in our country have come to believe in the notion that the one true God Who has revealed Himself through the Bible is actually an extraterrestrial from another planet.

Indeed, several of the people that I have worked with through the years have espoused this belief, and others have been made to seriously doubt the Bible as the product of a non-Divine intelligence from another world in our cosmos.  

Nor is this belief new. Sadly, many of the religious teachers of the past (as well as the present) have espoused this belief.

Consider, for example, the famous words of Mormon leader Brigham Young:

“Though we have it in history that our father Adam was made of the dust of this earth, and that he knew nothing about his God previous to being made here, yet it is not so; and when we learn the truth we shall see and understand that he helped to make this world, and was the chief manager in that operation. He was the person who brought the animals and the seeds from other planets to this world, and brought a wife with him and stayed here. You may read and believe what you please as to what is found written in the Bible. Adam was made from the dust of an earth, but not from the dust of this earth. He was made as you and I are made, and no person was ever made upon any other principle.” (THE COMPLETE JOURNAL OF DISCOURSES   Latter-day Saint Reference Edition, A Discourse by President Brigham Young, Delivered in the Tabernacle, Great Salt Lake City, April 20, 1856, 30581 (Kindle Edition))

This is, tragically, in harmony with the teachings of Joseph Smith Jr., the founder of the Latter-Day saints church:

“First, God Himself who sits enthroned in yonder heavens is a Man like unto one of yourselves—that is the great secret! If the veil were rent today and the great God that holds this world in its sphere and the planets in their orbit and who upholds all things by His power—if you were to see Him today, you would see Him in all the person, image, fashion, and very form of a man, like yourselves. For Adam was a man formed in His likeness and created in the very fashion and image of God. Adam received instruction, walked, talked, and conversed with Him as one man talks and communicates with another. In order to understand the subject of the dead and to speak for the consolation of those who mourn for the loss of their friends, it is necessary to understand the character and being of God. For I am going to tell you how God came to be God and what sort of a being He is. For we have imagined that God was God from the beginning of all eternity. I will refute that idea and take away the veil so you may see. Truth is the touchstone. These things are incomprehensible to some, but they are simple. The first principle of truth and of the Gospel is to know for a certainty the character of God, and that we may converse with Him the same as one man with another, and that He once was a man like one of us and that God Himself, the Father of us all, once dwelled on an earth the same as Jesus Christ himself did in the flesh and like us.” (Joseph Smith, Jr., in Donald Q. Cannon, The King Follett Discourse, 589-605 (Kindle Edition))

Whether from religious indoctrination or science fiction propaganda, many in our times have come to believe that the God of the Bible is an extraterrestrial, and not truly God.  

In this article, I would like to suggest three reasons why I reject the “God of the Bible is an extraterrestrial” theory.  

The Cosmological Problem

The first reason why I reject the Extraterrestrial theory is because of what I call the cosmological problem.  

When studying with atheists and agnostics, I point out what is known as the “cosmological argument,” which demonstrates clearly that there is an eternal God.

Basically, the argument goes like this:

1). If there was ever a time when there was absolutely nothing, there would be nothing now.

2). There is something now (i.e., I exist).

3). Therefore, something has always existed.

4). But we know that the universe has not always existed.

5). Therefore something beyond the universe has always existed.  

This argument is not only provable through simple logic and mathematics, but through the laws of science.  

How does this relate to the extraterrestrial God theory?  

Very simply, if there are extraterrestrials “out there” somewhere, then they also need an explanation for their existence. In other words, you always have to get back to the eternal Creator.  

The Teleological Problem 

The teleological problem for the extraterrestrial god theory is very simply stated: from what we have learned in our studies of science, life on Earth is unique!

There are NO EXTRATERRESTRIALS!  

Many will meet this statement with open criticism because they have been indoctrinated to believe in the so-called “Copernican principle,” which basically states that there are thousands and perhaps millions of planets throughout the universe which support life, and that Earth is not unique in any way, shape, or form.

This is, indeed, the consensus of many evolutionists (who continue to hold to the teachings of Darwinism, despite the clear evidences that this theory is false).  

However, the fact is, the more we learn about the universe, the more more we are learning that Earth is extremely unique.

In discussing the Copernican principle, two scientists lay out the logical predictions or implications of this theory, and then investigate the evidences to see how well the theory holds up to the facts:

“Sometime in the twentieth century, however, Einstein’s cosmological principle came to be identified with a subtly different idea, the Copernican Principle, also known as the Principle of Mediocrity or Principle of Indifference. 4 In its modest form, the Copernican Principle states that we should assume that there’s nothing special or exceptional about the time or place of Earth in the cosmos….Once considered, it’s fairly easy to produce some general predictions of the Copernican Principle. In practice, these are usually unstated expectations rather than actual predictions. This has the effect of protecting them from critical scrutiny— all the more reason, then, to make them explicit….Because astronomy considers objects as small as meteorites and individual planets, and as large as clusters of galaxies, the Copernican Principle has generated the most predictions in this field. Let’s scrutinize the major ones in turn. Appropriately, we’ll begin with one of the earliest: Prediction 1: Earth, while it has a number of life- permitting properties, isn’t exceptionally suited for life in our Solar System. Other planets in the Solar System probably harbor life as well….Most now recognize that the other planets in the Solar System are not good candidates for life….Much of this optimism ignores the myriad ways in which Earth is exceptionally well suited for the existence, and persistence, of life, as we detailed in Chapters Two through Six . No other place in our Solar System comes close to providing the astronomical and geophysical properties that make Earth habitable. If anything, the other planets show how narrow the conditions for habitability are, even for planets in an inhabited Solar System. The basic pattern is worth repeating, because it’s so often forgotten or ignored. From the seventeenth to the twentieth century, many expected to find intelligent, even superior life on the Moon, Mars, and other planets in the Solar System. This expectation required direct contrary evidence to suppress it. Now, at the beginning of the twenty- first century, despite PR blitzes from Martian- life enthusiasts, the search has moved from the planets to a few obscure outlying moons. At the same time, the aspirations have been substantially downgraded. No one today expects to find advanced or intelligent life elsewhere in the Solar System. ET advocates now argue that finding the Europan equivalent of slime mold would be just as significant as finding intelligent Martians. Add to this pattern the evidence of Chapter Six : some of the planets once said to diminish Earth’s status now seem to be the guardians of her habitability. Finally, recall that these rare properties discussed in Chapters Two through Six have been crucial in a diverse array of scientific discoveries here on Earth, from the nature of gravity to the internal structure of our planet revealed by seismic activity. Surely these facts about Earth’s superiority both for living and observing should count as a sobering contradiction of the Copernican Principle….Prediction 2: Our Sun is a fairly ordinary and typical star…As we discussed in Chapter Seven , however, we now know that our Sun has a number of important, and anomalous, life- permitting properties that simultaneously contribute to its measurability. These include its luminosity, variability, metallicity, and galactic orbit. So our Sun doesn’t fit this prediction well at all. Even among the minority of stars in the same class as our Sun, it seems to be exceptional in several important ways, again in contrast to the expectations nurtured by the Copernican Principle….Prediction 3: Our Solar System is typical; we should expect other Solar Systems to mirror our own….Nevertheless, what appears most likely, at the moment, is that our Solar System will turn out to be highly atypical with respect to its habitability….Prediction 4: Even if our Solar System is not typical, there are lots of planetary configurations that are consistent with the presence of biological organisms. Variables like the number and types of planets and moons are mainly contingencies that have little to do with the existence of life in a planetary system….In any event, the evidence from Chapters One through Six weighs heavily against it. The existence of a large, well- placed moon, of circular planetary orbits, of a properly placed asteroid belt with felicitous properties, of the early bombardment of these asteroids on Earth, of the outlying gas giants to sweep the Solar System of sterilizing comets later on— all these and more are profoundly important for the existence of complex life on our planet….Prediction 5: Our Solar System’s location in the Milky Way is relatively unimportant….Our Solar System is located within what may be a quite narrow Galactic Habitable Zone, and far from dusty, light- polluted regions, permitting an excellent overall view of both nearby stars and the distant universe….Prediction 6: Our galaxy is not particularly exceptional or important. Life could just as easily exist in old, small, elliptical, and irregular galaxies….Without enough metals, there aren’t enough materials for building terrestrial planets. And without terrestrial planets, there are no environments suitable for life. Our very massive, spiral galaxy, then, is an especially suitable home for a habitable planet and Solar System, while providing an optimal position for viewing and discovering both our own galaxy and the wider universe.” (Guillermo Gonzalez and Jay W. Richards, The Privileged Planet: How Our Place In The Cosmos Is Designed For Discovery, 4434-4632 (Kindle Edition): Washington DC; Regnery Publishing)

The more we learn from scientific discovery, the more we realize that life is a very rare treasure in tour universe.

As another scientist has pointed out:

“So, could it be possible that intelligent extraterrestrial beings are sending UFOs to Earth? As discussed in chapter 7 , the number of conditions necessary for life in any particular star- planet system, combined with the amount of time and complex processes involved in producing intelligent life, as well as the limited time frame that a planet remains habitable, make it extremely unlikely to find another planet in the universe capable of sustaining intelligent life. Especially during the same time frame that life exists on Earth. In fact, by some estimations, a person is more likely to win the California state lottery more than five thousand times in a row than we are apt to discover another life- friendly planet. In addition, there are several problems with the idea that UFOs might be coming from distant planets.” (Leslie Wickman, Ph.D (Corporate Test Astronaut, Rocket Scientist, and Hubble Space Telescope Engineer), God Of The Big Bang: How Modern Science Affirms The Creator,1425-1431 (Kindle Edition); Brentwood, TN; Worthy Books). 

Lee Strobel has provided some great evidences of the uniqueness of planet Earth: 

“It’s turning out that the Earth is anything but ordinary, that our sun is far from average, and that even the position of our planet in the galaxy is eerily fortuitous. The idea that the universe is a flourishing hothouse of advanced civilizations is now being undermined by surprising new scientific discoveries and fresh thinking. In short, new findings are suggesting that we are special. More and more scientists are studying the mind-boggling convergence of scores of extraordinary “coincidences” that make intelligent life possible on Earth and concluding that this can’t possibly be an accident. They’re seeing signs of design, a kind of unlikely fine-tuning for life similar to the fine-tuning of physics that we explored in the previous chapter. In fact, said one noted researcher, “new evidence which could potentially have refuted the [design] hypothesis has only ended up confirming it.” 11 Once again, we find the evidence of science pointing in the direction of a Creator. And rather than our lives being purposeless, scientists for the first time are uncovering concrete evidence that suggests at least one surprising purpose for which we were created—that is, to discover and learn about the surroundings in which we have been placed. In other words, as we’ll see in this chapter, one purpose for which we were designed is to do science itself. RIGHT PLACE, RIGHT TIME As the new millennium dawned, geologist Peter D. Ward and astronomer Donald Brownlee, both professors at the University of Washington in Seattle, published a provocative and highly successful book that raised this disquieting question about Earth: “What if it is utterly unique: the only planet with animals in this galaxy or even in the visible universe . . . ?” 12 Their book, Rare Earth, marshals evidence from a wide range of scientific disciplines to build its case that “not only intelligent life, but even the simplest of animal life, is exceedingly rare in our galaxy and in the universe.” 13 They called the conclusion “inescapable” that “Earth is a rare place indeed.” 14 Although Ward and Brownlee uncritically buy into the idea that microbial life may very well be more prevalent, a view they draw from the way life seemed to have effortlessly developed on Earth “about as soon as environmental conditions allowed its survival,” 15 their conviction that the existence of complex life is “extraordinarily rare” is bolstered by convincing data divorced from any theological framework. Calling their book “carefully reasoned and scientifically astute,” Don Johanson, director of the Institute of Human Origins at Arizona State University, remarked: “In spite of our wishful thinking, there just may not be other Mozarts or Monets.” 16 David Levy, of comet Shoemaker-Levy fame, added, “As we know it on Earth, complex life might be very rare, and very precious.” 17 Said the Times of London: “If they are right it could be time to reverse a process that has been going on since Copernicus.” 18 More and more scientists are observing the stunning ways in which our planet—against all odds—manages to fulfill a large number of finely balanced criteria that are absolutely crucial to supporting a habitat suitable for humankind. “Rather than being one planet among billions, Earth now appears to be the uncommon Earth,” said science educators Jimmy H. Davis and Harry L. Poe. “The data imply that Earth may be the only planet ‘in the right place at the right time.’ ” 19 A BOLD AND AUDACIOUS CLAIM Earth’s location, its size, its composition, its structure, its atmosphere, its temperature, its internal dynamics, and its many intricate cycles that are essential to life—the carbon cycle, the oxygen cycle, the nitrogen cycle, the phosphorous cycle, the sulfur cycle, the calcium cycle, the sodium cycle, and so on—testify to the degree to which our planet is exquisitely and precariously balanced. 20 As they begin their influential textbook Earth, Frank Press of the National Academy of Sciences and Raymond Siever of Harvard University write about what they call “the uniqueness of planet Earth.” 21 They note how its atmosphere filters out harmful ultraviolet radiation while working with the oceans to moderate the climate through the storing and redistributing of solar energy, and how the Earth is just large enough so that its gravity retains the atmosphere and yet just small enough not to keep too many harmful gases. Then they describe the Earth’s interior as . . . . . . a gigantic but delicately balanced heat engine fueled by radioactivity. . . . Were it running more slowly . . . the continents might not have evolved to their present form. . . . Iron may never have melted and sunk to the liquid core, and the magnetic field would never have developed. . . . If there had been more radioactive fuel, and therefore a faster running engine, volcanic dust would have blotted out the sun, the atmosphere would have been oppressively dense, and the surface would have been racked by daily earthquakes and volcanic explosions. 22 These kind of highly choreographed geological processes—and there are lots of them—leave me shaking my head at the astounding ways in which our biosphere is precisely tuned for life. Even more interesting, though, is the “why” question behind them. What accounts for all of these astounding “coincidences?”” (Lee Strobel, The Case For A Creator: A Journalist Investigates Scientific Evidence That Points Toward God, 155-157 (Kindle Edition); Grand Rapids, Michigan; Zondervan) 

Bottom line: there is no real reason to believe extraterrestrials even exist, much less that they are pretending to be the God of the Bible! 

The Ontological Problem 

To me, the biggest problem is: those who espouse the “God of the Bible is an extraterrestrial” theory are claiming that the God which has revealed Himself to us through the Scriptures is a huge liar.  

In fact, if the claims of God being an extraterrestrial are true, then the God of the Bible is the greatest liar the world has ever known.  

But when we look at the track record of the God of the Bible, do we see any evidence that He is lying to us?

Let’s consider.  

It has been estimated that there are over three thousand promises which are made by God to His people in the Bible.

And how many of those promises has He broken?

How many lies has He ever told? How many untruths has He uttered?

None.  

For example, the Prophet Joshua wrote of the faithfulness of God:

Joshua. 21:45-Not a word failed of any good thing which the LORD had spoken to the house of Israel. All came to pass.

Joshua 23:14-15-14 “Behold, this day I am going the way of all the earth. And you know in all your hearts and in all your souls that not one thing has failed of all the good things which the LORD your God spoke concerning you. All have come to pass for you; not one word of them has failed.

15 Therefore it shall come to pass, that as all the good things have come upon you which the LORD your God promised you, so the LORD will bring upon you all harmful things, until He has destroyed you from this good land which the LORD your God has given you.

God’s character has continually passed the “truth” test.  

Consider again:

2 Chronicles 19:7-7 Now therefore, let the fear of the LORD be upon you; take care and do it, for there is no iniquity with the LORD our God, no partiality, nor taking of bribes.”

Jeremiah 9:23-24-23 Thus says the LORD: “Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, Let not the mighty man glory in his might, Nor let the rich man glory in his riches;

24 But let him who glories glory in this, That he understands and knows Me, That I am the LORD, exercising lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth. For in these I delight,” says the LORD.

God has proven Himself true in every way. The simple fact is, we have no reason to suspect that the God of the Bible is anything other than what He claims to be: the eternal Creator.

In fact, if we will take the time to study about the characteristics of the eternal God which are manifested through the creation, then we see that the God of the Bible matches up perfectly!

Norman Geisler elaborates:

“This God Who Exists Is Identical to the God Described in the Christian tian Scriptures. The God described in the Bible is said to be eternal (Col. 1 :16; Heb. 1:2), changeless (Mal. 3:6; Heb. 6:18), infinite (I Kings 8:27; Isa. 66:1), all-loving (John 3:16; I John 4:16), and all-powerful (Heb. 1:3; Matt. 19:26). But there cannot be two infinitely perfect, changeless, eternal beings. First, there can be only one infinite and necessary sary Being, as was shown above (p. 239f.). Second, there could not be two beings who have all possible perfections attributable to them. For in order to be two beings one would have to differ from the other; where there is no difference in being there is only one being. But there can be no difference unless one being has something the other does not. But if there is something that an infinite being can have but one lacks, then the one lacking it is not absolutely perfect. Hence, there is only one absolutely perfect being. But if there cannot be two such beings, then the God described scribed in the Bible is identical to the God concluded from the above argument. Therefore, the God Described in the Bible Exists. If there is only one God and the God described in the Bible is identical in characteristics to him, then it follows logically that the God described in the Bible exists. For there cannot be two infinitely perfect beings; there cannot be two such ultimates or absolutes, and so forth. Hence, the God portrayed in Scripture does indeed exist.” (Norman Geisler, Christian Apologetics, 249-250 (Kindle Edition); Grand Rapids, Michigan; Baker Books House)  

But I want to go deeper with this line of thought.  

You see, if the Bible was indeed written by the eternal God (as it claims, and which supposition the evidence demands), then the many events, commands, and promises of the Bible make sense.

From the command in the Garden of Eden not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, to the Levitical sacrificial system, to the restitution commands of the Mosaic code, to the promises of the coming Messiah and His death on Calvary, etc.; all make perfect sense if they are the product of a perfectly righteous and holy God Who loves His creation and wants it redeemed.  

Yet what is the motivation of all of these commands if God were an extraterrestrial (assuming, for the sake of argument, that such beings do indeed exist)?

Some have suggested that we are the subjects of some grand study.

Yet I have to wonder: why would aliens from another star system or galaxy be interested in human beings?

Would they not have something better to do with their time then pretend to be God?

Why would they care one way or the other about us?  

Some have suggested that we have something which they need.

But think about that!

If they are so advanced that they can traverse the distances between the stars, what could mankind possibly offer to these creatures?  

To put it simply, if these beings did exist, it would seem that they would have a lot more important things to do with their time then pretend to be God.  

Conclusion

Much more could be said along these lines, but I believe there is more than sufficient evidence to establish the conclusion: the “God of the Bible is an extraterrestrial” theory is false.  

In our next article on this subject, we will consider in greater detail the subject of alleged alien abductions and contact.  
The God Who has revealed Himself to mankind through the Scriptures is the eternal God Who desires the salvation of all people (2 Peter 3:9; Ezekiel 18:23). Because of our sinfulness, we are personally condemned to eternal separation from this holy God (Romans 6:23; Isaiah 59:1-2). Yet God loves us so much that He sent His Son to pay the price for the sins of mankind (1 Timothy 2:6; 2 Corinthians 5:15). Jesus Christ died for us, was buried, and arose from the dead on the third day (1 Corinthians 15:1-8).

He promises to save those who hear His Word (Romans 10:17), believe in Jesus Christ as the Son of God (John 8:24), repent of sin (Luke 13:3), confess Jesus Christ as the Son of God (Acts 8:37), and are baptized into Him (Acts 2;38).

When we live faithfully to Him, even till death, we will receive the crown of life and the crown of righteousness (Revelation 2:10).  

When we fall short and sin as Christians (which we will-1 John 1:8), then God says that He will forgive us when we repent and confess those sins to Him in prayer (Acts 8:22; 1 John 1:9).  

Why not obey Him today?

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.   

Could It All Be By Chance?

By: Mark Tabata (Evangelist)

Several people I work with tell me, “Mark, we exist only because of chance. There is no God!”

I am sure that many have come to believe this through the influence of several sources: the public school system (even though there are godly teachers who refuse to propagate such nonsense), the media, public broadcasting, social networking, etc.  
Yet what do the facts of science actually show?  

Are we here by chance, or is there a Creator? 

One author, Stephen Joseph Williams, wrote a fascinating book entitled, What Your Atheist Professor Doesn’t Know (But Should): An Exploration Of The Implications Of Modern Science, Archaeology, History And Philosophy.
The book is a fascinating study of Christian Evidences.
In chapter two, he writes the following:

“The appearance that the universe was designed to support life on earth is overwhelming. Secular scientists have observed that for physical life to be possible in the universe, many characteristics must take on specific values, as referenced below. In the secular scientific world, this circumstance of apparent fine-tuning in the universe is not disputed, and is referred to as “The Anthropic Principle”. Atheistic scientists have offered several unconvincing rationalizations for this having occurred without the involvement of a Divine Mind, but given the intricacy of the inter-relationships between various features in the universe, the indication of divine “fine tuning” seems incontrovertible.” (Stephen Joseph Williams, What Your Atheist Professor Doesn’t Know (But Should): An Exploration Of The Implications Of Modern Science, Archaeology, History And Philosophy, 50-51 (Kindle Edition); RFH) 

Williams then goes on to provide a list of some 93 factors which must exist in a universe in order for life to exist.  
Yet he doesn’t stop there.  

“Not only is the universe at large apparently fine-tuned to support life, there is an array of features in our more local region of the universe that are also necessary to allow life to survive. The features of a planet, its planetary companions, its moon, its star, and its galaxy must have values falling within narrowly defined ranges (infinitesimally small targets, and all precisely coordinated) for physical life of any kind to exist.” (Stephen Joseph Williams, What Your Atheist Professor Doesn’t Know (But Should): An Exploration Of The Implications Of Modern Science, Archaeology, History And Philosophy, 60 (Kindle Edition); RFH) 

He then provides a list of 154 factors “locally” which make life possible, adding these words:

“Keep in mind that this list is always growing as new improbabilities are being discovered. According to Dr.’ s Ross and Rana, the improbability increases by about a million times each month!” (Stephen Joseph Williams, What Your Atheist Professor Doesn’t Know (But Should): An Exploration Of The Implications Of Modern Science, Archaeology, History And Philosophy, 119-120 (Kindle Edition); RFH) 

Taking all of these factors into account, is there a possibility that we are here by chance?  

“Since the threshold of mathematical impossibility is 1 in 10 to the 50th power (ie: given a 13.73 billion year universe, there is not enough time for anything with this or smaller odds to occur by chance), and the odds of this fine-tuning coming into existence by chance are far, far beyond that, we can rule out chance. Only a transcendent Creator makes sense of this unbelievably complex order in the universe. During the last 35 years or so, scientists have discovered that the existence of intelligent life absolutely depends upon this very delicate and complex balance of initial conditions. It appears that “the deck was stacked” in the substances, constants and quantities of the Big Bang itself, to provide a life-permitting universe. We now know through modern science that life-prohibiting universes are vastly more probable than any life-permitting universe like ours. How much more probable? Well, the answer is that the chances that the universe should be life-permitting are so infinitesimally small as to be incomprehensible and incalculable. For example, Stephen Hawking has estimated that if the rate of the universe’s expansion one second after the Big Bang had been smaller by even one part in a hundred thousand million million, the universe would have re-collapsed into a hot fireball due to gravitational attraction. (4) Physicist P.C.W. Davies has calculated that the odds against the initial conditions being suitable for star formation (without which planets could not exist) is one followed by at least a thousand billion billion zeroes! (5) Davies also calculates that a change in the strength of gravity or of the weak force by merely one part in 10 raised to the 100th power (!) would have prevented a life-permitting universe. (6) As we saw in the previous lists, there are dozens and dozens of such constants and quantities present in the Big Bang which must be exquisitely fine-tuned in this way if the universe is to permit life. Moreover, it’s not only each individual quantity or constant which must be finely tuned; their ratios to each other must also be exquisitely finely tuned. Therefore, vast improbability is multiplied by vast improbability, and yet again by vast improbability repeatedly until our minds are simply reeling in vanishingly small odds. There is no plausible physical reason why these constants and quantities should have the values that they do. Reflecting on this, the once-agnostic physicist P.C.W. Davies comments, “Through my scientific work I have come to believe more and more strongly that the physical universe is put together with an ingenuity so astonishing that I cannot accept it merely as a brute fact.” (7) Likewise, British Astrophysicist Sir Frederick Hoyle remarks, “A common sense interpretation of the facts suggests that a super-intellect has monkeyed with physics.” (8) Robert Jastrow, the head of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, refers to this as “the most powerful evidence for the existence of God ever to come out of science.” (9) So, again, the view that Christian theists have historically held, that there is an intelligent Designer of the universe, seems to make so much more sense than the atheistic alternative: that the universe, when it popped into being, without cause, out of nothing, just happened to be, by chance, fine-tuned for intelligent life with a mind-numbingly unlikely precision and delicacy. To call the odds against this fine-tuning occurring by chance “astronomical” would be a wild understatement.” (Stephen Joseph Williams, What Your Atheist Professor Doesn’t Know (But Should): An Exploration Of The Implications Of Modern Science, Archaeology, History And Philosophy, 121-124 (Kindle Edition); RFH) 

It’s no wonder that the famed Albert Einstein said:

“I’m not an atheist and I don’t think I can call myself a pantheist. The problem involved is too vast for our limited minds. We are in the position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many languages. The child knows someone must have written those books. It does not know how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. The child dimly suspects a mysterious order in the arrangement of the books but doesn’t know what that is. That, it seems to me, is the attitude of the most intelligent human toward God.” (Isaacson, W. (2008). Einstein: His Life and Universe. New York: Simon and Schuster, p. 386)

Friends, there is NO CHANCE that we are here by accident or by chance.

The universe was created by the eternal God Who has revealed Himself to mankind through His wondrous creation: 

Romans 1:18-20-18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness,

19 because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them.

20 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 are without excuse,

We have all sinned against God by breaking His law (Romans 2:12-15), which is why God in mercy sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to save us (John 3:16). Jesus died for the sins of mankind, was buried, and arose from the dead on the third day after His death (1 Corinthians 15:1-8).

He has decreed that all hear His Word (John 6:44-45), believe in Him as the Son of God (John 8:24), repent of their sins (Luke 13:3), confess Him as the Son of God (Acts 8:37), and are baptized into Him (Acts 22:16) will be saved by God and added to His church (Acts 2:47).

If we are faithful to Him, even to the point of death, we will receive Heaven itself as our home (Revelation 2:10).

When we sin as Christians, we can be forgiven if we repent of those sins and confess them to God in prayer (1 John 1:9).  

Why not be baptized into Christ today? Or why not return to Him if you as a Christian have turned from Him in sin?

The churches of Christ stand ready to assist you.  

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.  

Is Time Really The Hero Of The Plot?  

By: Mark Tabata (Evangelist)

Many of the people I study with are atheist and agnostic. I have no problem studying with my friends of these persuasions: the truth is powerful and able to convert even the most hard-hearted skeptic (provided they are sincerely seeking the truth-Jeremiah 29:13; 1 Peter 3:15; Acts 26:25; Proverbs 28:14).

I often talk with my friends about the amazing complexity of the universe, a complexity which is often demonstrated through the orderliness and incredible functionality of the integral parts of the cosmos. Even down to the molecular level, our scientists have learned that the universe is exceedingly complex and complicated. Indeed, every molecule of Creation cries out to the Great Designer behind it!   Continue reading Is Time Really The Hero Of The Plot?