Friday, July 11, 2008

CH Spurgeon on Extraterrestrial Life

The nearest planetthat resolves around the sun is Mercury, which is about 37,000,000 miles from the great luminary. Mercury, therefore, receives a far greater allowance of light and heat from the sun than comes to us upon the earth. It is believed that, even at the poles of Mercury, water would always boil; that is to say, if the planet is constituted at all as this world is. None of us could possibly live there; but that is no reason why other people should not, for God could make some of his creatures to live in the fire just as well as he could make others to live out of it. I have no doubt that, if there are inhabitants there, they enjoy the heat. In a spiritual sense, at any rate, we know that men who live near to Jesus dwell in the divine flame of love.

CH Spurgeon, Lectures to my Students, p.475

This statement comes across as somewhat surpising given the dogmatism with which many Evangelical Christians dismiss the possibility of extraterrestrial life. Some of Spurgeon's most devoted admirers are among the most dogmatic in denying extraterrestrial life. Spurgeon's acknowledgement tends to get forgotten, just like his Premillennialism and his Old Earth Gap views.

Is there life on other planets? Only if God created it. We must reject any probabalistic calculations about it based on godless evolutionary theory. In fact some scientists calculate that possibility is highly unlikely anyway.

There certainly is angelic life and I would suggest that angels are not an order of beings totally removed from similarity to us. They seem to have bodies of flesh like ours.

I am very uncomfortable with the dogamtic assertion that God would never have created extraterrestrial life. The Lord has not seen fit to reveal all things to us at this time. There are many cosmic mysteries that we are not party to.

Sadly for Spurgeon, it does appear that Mercury and the other planets of our solar system do not feature life. I suggested in a recent post that they may have once been inhabited before the rebellion of Lucifer. Does God create a wasteland?


Jonathan Hunt said...

Rather far-fetched to take a throwaway comment like that as 'proof' that Spurgeon believed in extraterrestrial life. Of course, he was premillennial. Of his gap theory belief you allege, I know nothing except to say that I have read plenty by him which affirms seven literal days.

The best thing about Mr Spurgeon is that he cannot be put in a box as some would like to do. He was too much of an arminian for many calvinists, which makes him my kind of calvinist!


Celestial Fundie said...

I am not claiming that Spurgeon did believe in the likelihood of extraterrestrial life. I am simply pointing out that Spurgeon did not insist on the impossibility of extraterrestrial life in the way that many Evangelicals do.

"Of his gap theory belief you allege, I know nothing except to say that I have read plenty by him which affirms seven literal days."

The Gap theory is perfectly consistent with a six-day creation, provided one views the days as restorative.

I quoted Spurgeon's recreationist views here.

Every Blessing in Christ


Jonathan Hunt said...

Mr Spurgeon was mistaken on this matter, just as in his premillennialism.

Ohh yeah, have a bit of that fundie-boy!

GordonCloud said...

While I think it is highly unlikely that there is extra-terrestrial life, it is fun to contemplate the possibility.

Celestial Fundie said...

Jonathan, I dare say Mr Spurgeon was mistaken about quite a few things.

Celestial Fundie said...

Gordon, thanks for joinging in.

On what basis do you say it is unlikely?

Jonathan Hunt said...

I'll answer that from my own perspective - its unlikely because we have no evidence.

Celestial Fundie said...

I am not sure that follows logically.

I do not posess any evidence whether BMW cars are popular or not in Sweden. However, the fact that I do not possess evidence of the matter does not make it unlikely that BMWs are popular. It simply makes it uncertain.

UKSteve said...

Is life on another planet any more or less likely than life on this one?

Celestial Fundie said...

Steve, if one does not believe in God and believes in evolution, then life is unlikely anywhere in the universe.

As God exists, the likelihood of life on this planet or on other planets depends upon the choice of God to create it.

So has God decided to create life on other planets?

Some Christians believe that they know God so well that they are sure He would never create life on other planets.

Every Blessing in Christ