The new president of the Vatican Observatory Foundation has said that it is only a matter of time before alien life forms are discovered, which will pave the way to questions about God’s relationship to intelligent beings outside our planet.
Jesuit Brother Guy Consolmagno speculated that the general public will not be too surprised when life on other planets is eventually discovered, and will react in much the same way it did when news broke in the ’90s that there are other planets orbiting far off stars.
Consolmagno, a planetary scientist who has studied meteorites and asteroids as an astronomer with the Vatican Observatory since 1993, told Catholic News Service that discovery of alien life will not prove or disprove the existence of God, but will pave the way to questions on salvation and how it relates to intelligent species.
I agree that one would not be able to automatically draw conclusions either way from the discovery of intelligent life elsewhere, but what I dispute is that they must needs exist, only because we have no evidence for either the existence or non-existence of intelligent alien life elsewhere, so speculating that ‘it’s only a matter of time’ before we discover such, means Consolmagno is arguing not from fact, but from an unsupported belief.
Some creationists, however, such as Creation Museum CEO and President Ken Ham, have argued that God has not created life anywhere outside the Earth.
“I’m shocked at the countless hundreds of millions of dollars that have been spent over the years in the desperate and fruitless search for extraterrestrial life,” Ham wrote in a blog post for Answers in Genesis in July, referring to NASA programs probing for extraterrestrial life.
“Of course, secularists are desperate to find life in outer space, as they believe that would provide evidence that life can evolve in different locations and given the supposed right conditions! The search for extraterrestrial life is really driven by man’s rebellion against God in a desperate attempt to supposedly prove evolution!”
I also disagree with Ham, because nothing in Scripture teaches that life does not exist elsewhere; therefore, we ought not assert that it doesn’t, any more than we ought to assert that it does.
It’s not like it matters, unless and until we find such…
Why not cross that bridge if and when we reach it, folks on either side of the ‘debate’?
Arguing about it until then is pointless, and accomplishes nothing, other than making Christians look foolish.