We are surrounded by the wondrous miracles of creation. “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the skies proclaim the work of his hands” (Psalm 19:1).
Prophet Alma Versus Atheist Korihor
There is a story in the Book of Mormon wherein Korihor, the atheist, tried to destroy the church and the faith of the people. He was confronted by the prophet Alma. During their debate Korihor asked for a sign from heaven. Wisely, Alma replied:
“Thou hast had signs enough; will by tempt your God? Will ye say, Show unto me a sign, when ye have the testimony of all these thy brethren and also all the holy prophets?
“The scriptures are laid before thee, yea, and all things denote there is a God; yea, even the earth, and all things that are upon the face of it, yea, and its motion, yea, and also all the planets which move in their regular form do witness that there is a Supreme Creator.” (Alma 30: 43-44)
The Lord does not give signs to skeptics, because those who seek signs have rejected and refused to recognize the countless of signs God has already given.
God is Still a God of Miracles
The Book of Mormon reiterates:
“Behold I say unto you . . . God has not ceased to be a God of miracles.
“Behold, are not the things that God hath wrought marvelous in our eyes? Yes, and who can comprehend the marvelous works of God?
“Who shall say that it was not a miracle that by his word the heaven and the earth should be; and by the power of his word man was created of the dust of the earth; and by the power of his word have miracles been wrought? (Mormon 9: 15-17)
The cosmos is overwhelmingly complex. One of the greatest miracles is that it works. Another miracle is that it is understandable.
There are immutable laws of nature that govern the universe. If the cosmos were merely a random chance creation, then there should be universal chaos. On the contrary, the cosmos is orderly, and it is understandable.
The earth itself is a miracle. It is just the right size, in the right location, moving at the right speed.
The earth’s perfect location in a spiral arm of the Milky Way Galaxy
The earth is located in the vacant spiral of the Orion arm of the Milky Way galaxy. The earth is in a low-density region. It is on the outskirts of the galaxy. The earth is far away from super novae, nebula, black holes, gamma-ray bursts, and other stars that could threaten or destroy it. The earth is in the narrow “Galactic Habitable Zone.”
The earth’s perfect location in the Solar System
The earth is the perfect distance from the sun, about 93 million miles. (92.96) If the earth were closer to the sun, it would be to hot for humans. Plus, all the oceans, lakes, and streams would evaporate and steam away.
If the earth were farther from the sun, it would be too cold for humans. Plus, the oceans, lakes, and streams would freeze solid.
The earth is not too far, and it is not too close. It is just right. It is in the habitable, “Goldilocks Zone.”
The perfect size and type of the Sun
The sun is the perfect type and size. The size and distance of the sun give the earth just the right amount of heat and radiation. The most common stars in the universe are the dwarf stars which are much to small and much too cool for earth life to survive. In short, if the sun were small or larger, or dimmer or brighter, life could not exist on the earth.
The perfect location and size of the Moon
The large moon near the earth helps to keep the planet’s axis stable. The size and location of the moon create tides that are beneficial. If the moon were larger or closer, the ocean tides would be destructive and deadly. The moon also helps stabilize the poles and the climate.
Jupiter: the earth’s perfect “body guard”
Jupiter is the earth’s “big brother” or “bodyguard.” Because of its massive size, location, and gravitational pull, Jupiter blocks incoming asteroids, meteors, and space debris that might otherwise strike the earth.
The earth’s perfect size
The earth’s size is just right. If the earth were smaller, it could not hold it atmosphere. If the earth were larger it might be a gas giant or too hot for life.
The earth’s perfect rotation and axis tilt
The earth rotates every 24 hours, giving warming light, and cooling shadow each day. If the earth rotated too slowly, the sunny parts would get too hot and the darker parts would get too cold for life to exist. The earth revolves around the sun on an axis, of 23.5 degrees. This creates the seasons, which are vital to life as we know it.
The earth’s perfect atmosphere
The earth’s atmosphere contains just the right types and amounts of non-poisonous chemicals.
Nitrogen makes up 78.09 % of the atmosphere. It is an inert non-toxic gas. The atmosphere contains 20.95 % oxygen (O2) for humans and animals to breathe. The atmosphere also contains a small amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) necessary for plant life.
Any change in the type or amount of chemicals would be destructive. For example, if there were much more oxygen, fires would rage out of control.
The atmosphere is just the right thickness. It allows beneficial radiation and heat to penetrate, while deflecting poisonous radiation.
The atmosphere also contains ozone (O3). Ozone is located in the stratosphere and absorbs most of the sun’s dangerous ultraviolet radiation.
The earth’s perfect habitable diverse climate
Most of the earth is habitable. This is extremely rare. There is a great variety to the climates. Some people like it hot, and some people like it cold. Some people like it dry, and some people like it damp. The climate creates arid deserts and rain forests. Most of the earth is neither too hot nor too cold, nor too dry or too wet, for plant, animal, and human life. Miraculous!
The cosmos and earth contain countless wondrous miracles. We just need to open our eyes and hearts.
(Sources: “Six Things That Make Life on Earth Possible,” National Geographic Magazine, Mar. 2018, http://www.nationalgeographic.com; “Why is life only possible on Earth,” Quora, May 2019; http://www.quora.com; “8 things that make Life on Earth Possible,” Our Planet, ourplant.com; “What Makes Earth Special Compared to Other Planets,” Science and Astronomy, July 8, 2008; http://www.space.com; “What Makes Earth so Perfect for Life,” Live Science: Planet Earth, Charles Choi, Oct. 18, 2012, http://www.livescience.com; “Orbital effects on climate,” “Goldilocks zone,” “Astronomical unit,” Wikipedia.)
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