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Observations from the Video Presentation “The Privileged Planet”

A Two-Part Series by Brent Bower

“The heavens proclaim the glory of God. The skies display his craftsmanship. Day after day they continue to speak; night after night they make him known. They speak without a sound or word; their voice is never heard. Yet their message has gone throughout the earth, and their words to all the world.” PS 19:1-4 NLT

A little while back I had the fortunate experience of being given a couple of videos by different people that were astounding. They came from completely different sources, one from scientists, the other from a worship concert, but together brought amazing insight into God. I wanted to share it.

The first one from scientists was called “The Privileged Planet” that a family member gave me. It is an account of how scientists, not necessarily Christians, but scientists that honestly follow evidence, have
made discoveries about the universe that led them to believe it was built by design and not chance.

They say a lot on the video but let me just discuss a few things here about the universe, its laws, and its constants on which it is based.

Many factors must come together at the same place and the same time for complex life to exist on a heavenly body. They all exist on earth. The list is some 20 items and growing as our understanding grows. I’ll just mention a few. Note that some of these are needed for more than one reason.

  • Liquid water.
  • Terrestrial body. Land, not gas.
  • Not too hot or too cold – in the ‘habitable zone’ of a solar system. Not 5% closer to, or 20% further from the sun, or we would burn up, or freeze.
  • Have giant gas planets in the solar system to shield the inner planets.
  • A sun that is big enough–a G2 giant dwarf. (90%) of stars are less massive than this.
  • Atmosphere with oxygen.
  • A large moon (large enough to stabilize tilt of axis of rotation to moderate the climate, give us tides to mix the ocean waters).
  • Liquid iron core – creates a magnetic field that shields the planet from solar wind.
  • Thin crust – allows for plate tectonics.
  • Right spot in the galaxy. Galactic habitable zone. Not too close to center where too much star action is going on; not too far out where not enough materials are.

Earth has the precise recipe.

Conservatively giving a one-in-ten chance for each one of these (actually it is likely smaller than that), yields a one in 10,000,000,000,000,000 (15 zeroes) chance of happening. Earth is rare; it is not common at all. This is very unlikely to happen by chance at the same place at the same time. It is by design.

There is a consistency in the laws of physics throughout the universe. They didn’t have to be that way. Not only are they tuned in a way to support us, but they are simple – elegant – therefore beautiful, understandable, and discoverable. Discoverability is not Darwinian – we have no survival need to discover.

It seems the universe is intended to have observers that would discover and understand its design. Why? There is a consistency in the laws of physics throughout the universe.

They didn’t have to be that way. Not only are they tuned in a way to support us, but they are simple – elegant – therefore beautiful, understandable, and discoverable. Discoverability is not Darwinian – we have no survival need to discover. It seems the universe is intended to have observers that would discover and understand its design. Why?

Many of the factors that allow for complex life are also those that make the earth the perfect place to observe the universe. The one place that has observers (earth) is the best and only place to make observations, see eclipses, and make scientific discovery. From the observations of our sun that can only be made during total solar eclipse, comes unique understandings of the physics and chemistry of the universe. The earth is the only place where a total solar eclipse can be seen because of the perfect match between the size of the sun and moon, the distance of the moon from the earth, and the distance of the earth from the sun. Here are other notable factors out of more than a dozen:

  • Thin atmosphere, made of O2, is transparent so that we can see out.
  • Electromagnetic spectrum – only a sliver is useful for life (photosynthesis) – visible. That is also the best for observing the universe.
  • Galactic scale. Our planet’s position within the galaxy and the type of galaxy we inhabit also permit us to see our own galaxy and to see and distinguish other galaxies and the rest of the universe.
  • Halfway out from center of our Milky Way galaxy, the center has black hole, super nova, deadly radiation, and dust particles. In other words, dangerous to us.
  • The outer part of the galaxy does not have enough ingredients to make a terrestrial earth without the heavy elements (it would be a gas planet)….
  • Low dust, between spiral arms, a flattened disc, and in the galactic habitable zone.

The perfect placement to survive and thrive; and, the most wondrous. The perfect place to
discover His works, to encounter Him. Wow! But there is so much more.

Modern scientists studying the laws of nature have discovered that to lose any one of the
laws or natural constants, or to even change one by the smallest amount, life as we know it
would not exist. They are all necessary and critically balanced–finely tuned to support life
like us. Things like gravity couldn’t vary by more than the minutest amount and still sustain
the universe we have. These laws can’t change even a little bit or else there would be no
plants, galaxies, or atoms. That brings to mind Matt 5:18: “…until heaven and earth disappear,
not even the smallest detail of God’s law will disappear until its purpose is achieved.” NLT
These scientists found an intelligent universe that has had an intelligent design. It has been
designed particularly suited for humans and our Earth. And not only that, but it has been
designed to be discovered – by us! Why does God work so hard to have His nature and His
ways discoverable by us? “You will know me when you search for me with all your heart,” God says. More on this later.

“They know the truth about God because he has made it obvious to them. For ever since the
world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they
can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no
excuse for not knowing God.” Romans 1:19-20. NLT

I have only been able to skim the surface of the topics in the video. For much more, you can
view the video yourself at www.theprivilegedplanet.com, or https://archive.org/details/
ThePrivilegedPlanet.

Editor’s Note: Please see our upcoming July 2017 issue of the Good News Letter for Part II of this article.


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