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A meteorite said to be billions of years old contains molecules that include carbon atoms. Is it therefore proof that life on earth could have been seeded from space?
The so-called Murchison meteorite, which crashed into Australia in 1969, has been an object of interest to scientists for decades. In June 2008, we reported that a team studying the meteorite had discovered “components of RNA and DNA” in the rock, exciting those who believe life exists beyond earth.
The scientists identified 14,000 different compounds.
A new study, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, examined more of the molecular structure of the meteorite. By using mass spectrometry on a sample and extrapolating based on previous studies, the scientists identified 14,000 different compounds. Many include carbon and are therefore deemed “organic,” as carbon is central to all known life.
Team leader Philippe Schmitt-Kopplin of the Institute for Ecological Chemistry commented, “Having this information means you can tell what was happening during the birth of the solar system. Meteorites are like some kind of fossil. When you try to understand them you are looking back in time.”
Like fossils, however, meteorites are subject to interpretation. That this meteorite contains carbon proves only that this meteorite contains carbon; evolutionists have no clear answer to how lifeless molecules could have self-organized into reproducing life. Likewise, the idea that the Murchison meteorite dates from the beginning of the solar system (i.e., billions of years ago, according to evolutionists), is speculation built on uniformitarian presuppositions.
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Answers in Genesis is an apologetics ministry, dedicated to helping Christians defend their faith and proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ effectively. We focus on providing answers to questions about the Bible—particularly the book of Genesis—regarding key issues such as creation, evolution, science, and the age of the earth.