I used to ask my daughter around the age of 1 or so, "Who made the moon?" She would answer, "God!" (I taught her well) This was before I learned just how fined tuned the moon must be for human life to be possible here on Earth.
Did you know that without the precise size and location of the moon, life on Earth would not be possible? For instance, science has discovered that the moon serves many purposes to support life on Earth. One such example is that it serves to stabilize the tilt of the Earth's rotation axis. Get this: If the moon's mass were only 2 percent larger (increase the radius of the moon by just 7 miles), then the tug of the enlarged moon's gravity would significantly pull the Earth's axial tilt out of balance (it's tilt is currently stable at a 23 degree angle) causing catastrophic climactic changes (decreases in rainfall and increases in life threatening temperature changes). (Al Gore eat your heart out)
However, if the mass of the moon were just 2 percent less (decrease the radius of the moon by just 7 miles) then the moon's gravity would be too weak to put brakes on the Earth's rotation rate, which in turn would mean that the Earth would rotate in just a few hours, instead of 24. The results of a faster rotation rate of the Earth would also be catastrophic for life, resulting in overwhelmingly frequent hurricanes and tornadoes, and with longer durations. While it's true that a slightly less massive moon would eventually slow the Earth's rotation rate, the time it would take would be considerably longer than the 4.5 billion year time window in which our Sun requires to enter into it's most stable burning phase, (which begins when the Sun is about 4.5 billion years old - which is right now in human existence) and this would mean that the Sun's burning phase would be unstable, also making life impossible on Earth.
So, what do you think? Do you think the moon's size and location as beneficial to life on Earth is just a lucky, random chance event or coincidence? Or, is it more plausible to think that an intelligent Agent (God) fine tuned it for our benefit? Before you answer, consider the way that scientists now believe how the moon was formed in the first place.
According to the latest scientific theory called the Giant Impact Hypothesis, the moon was formed from a just right mars sized object which struck the young Earth at just the right velocity and at just the right angle, crashing into the Earth and blowing away the thick early Earth atmosphere (see verse 9 of Job 38 which describes the very thick early Earth atmosphere, so thick that from the vantage point of an observer on the surface of the Earth, the observer would experience darkness) and replacing it with an atmosphere thin enough for light to pass through (see Genesis 1 verses 2 and 3 where the once thick atmosphere of the Earth is changed to allow for the first time light to reach the surface - note the frame of reference is of that of an observer on the Earth's surface). The resulting debris field from the impact coalesced to form the moon. Here's a section from Hugh Ross's book, "Creation As Science": (page 111)
"Most of the time, a major crash constitutes a catastrophe. But one gigantic collision proved just the opposite. When primordial Earth was only 30 to 50 million years old, a planet between 11 and 14 percent the mass of Earth (for comparison's sake, Mars = 0.107 Earth masses) smashed into Earth at a 45 degree angle. The speed of the planet upon impact was surprisingly slow (less than 4 kilometers per second). This astonishing crash:
- Replaced Earth's thick, suffocating atmosphere with one thin enough (about 100 times thinner) for light to pass through. The new atmosphere had the just right chemical composition to foster life's existence.
- Boosted the mass and density of the Earth just enough to allow Earth's gravity to retain a large, but not too large, quantity of water vapor for billions of years.
- Raised the amount of iron in Earth's core closer to the level needed to provide Earth with a strong and enduring magnetic field. This magnetic field shield's life from deadly cosmic rays and solar X-rays.
- Delivered to Earth's core and mantle quantities of iron and other associated elements in the just right ratios to produce sufficiently long lasting, continent building plate tectonics. (Earth began without any continents) Plate tectonics also play a crucial role in compensating for the Sun's increasing brightness so that life can be sustained on Earth for billions of years.
- Increased the iron content of Earth's crust in a way that permits a huge abundance of ocean life that in turn supports advanced land life. (see Genesis 1:20)
- Played a major role in salting Earth's interior with an abundance of long lasting radioisotopes, the heat from which drives most of the Earth's tectonic activity and volcanism.
- Gradually slowed Earth's rotation rate so that a wide variety of lower life forms could survive long enough to provide the resources needed for the existence of advanced life forms. This slowing was also directly significant to advanced life, which cannot survive the high wind velocities of a more rapid rotation rate. (due to the creation of Earth's moon as a result of the impact)
- Stabilized the tilt of Earth's rotation axis, protecting the planet from rapid and extreme climatic variations." (due to the creation of Earth's moon as a result of the impact)
He goes on to state that each of these beneficial results of the impact made conditions for the possibility of advanced life far more favorable.
Now, with all of that said, now I want you to ask yourself the same question as before. Was the formation and fine tuning of the moon to make life on Earth possible just a product of random chance, coincidence, or the result of carefully orchestrated engineering by an incredibly intelligent, powerful, Agent?
If you answered an intelligent Agent, what if I could show you that the Bible's various creation accounts match the most recent scientific accounts of the creation of the universe, Earth, moon and life on Earth? Wouldn't that mean that the Bible is true and trustworthy?
I love in Genesis 1 and Job 38, the exact conditions of the early Earth are described in detail and match what science has discovered some 3000 years later. See the references for yourself above.
Well, I'm out of time - I was going to introduce you to the Solar System today but I'll save that for next time.
Until then, have a great and Merry Christmas!