If science fiction is any guide, the universe must be crammed full of extraordinary worlds, each swarming with sundry creatures of every imaginable shape and size. Avatar’s sumptuous moon, circling a gas giant in the Alpha Centauri star system, is just one of the endless possibilities. In contrast, our earth seems like a humdrum affair.
At least, that’s the impression we get from the big screen. But new technology has begun to pull back the curtain on the planets outside the solar system. Our lowly home doesn’t seem so lowly anymore. In fact, it appears to be one of a kind.
Each new discovery highlights the special care that the Creator showered upon our earth, the one place He “
formed to be inhabited” (Isaiah 45:18).
While secular astronomers are busy trying to prove that evolution is a common phenomenon throughout the black expanse of the cosmos, their work serves to reinforce the opposite notion. God made life, and it is unique to this pale blue dot.
According to the latest estimate, our galaxy harbors 100 billion planets. Of these, astronomers are feverishly trying to isolate a handful that might meet the bare minimum for life, as they define it. But the pickings are slim.
In fact, the more researchers refine their list, the more they realize how many details must be “just right” for life. The challenge is even harder within the evolutionary worldview because it requires a nurturing environment that remains stable for billions of years. Otherwise, advanced life doesn’t have a chance. When you look at the minimum requirements—a cozy orbit, a stable star, a stabilizing moon, and a protective atmosphere—only one planet fits the bill. Earth.
The only way to fill distant planets with flying banshees and ten-foot, blue-skinned Na’vi is the vivid imagination of movie makers.