"As soon as you are willing to discard observational data because it conflicts with religion, you are giving up hope of ever really understanding the universe."

- Wilson Heydt


Both the continuing exploration of space and the popularity of science fiction makes this question irresistible, and perhaps inevitable.

I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep.

I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd.

- John 10:14-16



Wouldn't the discovery of life on other planets totally destroy the Bible?

"Sometimes I think we're alone. Sometimes I think we're not. In either case, the thought is staggering."

- Buckminster Fuller


There is speculation about the possible existence in the universe of other life sustaining planets like the earth. Would evidence of their existence or of life on them refute the Bible?

Whether or not this planet is the only life-bearing one is not dealt with in the Bible (no particular interpretation of the creation account necessarily favors or forbids this possibility). Conceivably, as God nurtured the small nation of Israel for the role of evangelizing the entire world, our world could be destined for a similar role on a much grander scale. At present, I would say this is not likely.

As for traces of life on other planets, like Mars, it is conceivable that some building-block type chemicals may be found, but chemicals and associated chemical compounds do not constitute life. For greater discussion, read what the discoverer of DNA and others have to say about the matter; also here.

As it appears that we are alone in the universe, the thought of the entire cosmos being essentially no more than a backdrop for God's creation of us becomes extremely profound. A very compelling point of view in the American Scientist deduces that such an immense universe was actually necessary if mankind was truly the desired end result:

...Intelligence implies a brain. And a brain cannot come into being without life. As the foundation of life no biochemist sees any alternative but DNA. But DNA demands carbon for its construction. Carbon in turn comes into being by thermonuclear combustion in the stars. Thermonuclear combustion demands billions of years in time. But according to general relativity a Universe cannot provide billions of years of time unless it also has billions of light-years of extent. On this view it is not the Universe that has dominion over the man, but man who governs the size of the Universe. 9


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See also:

What is the nature of life?

Where did the universe come from?

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