The future the Bible didn’t foresee

“Space. The final frontier.
These are the voyages of the Starship Enterprise.
Its 5 year mission:
To explore strange new worlds.
To seek out new life and new civilizations.
To boldly go where no man has gone before”.
— Star Trek opening

Toroidal space colony. Courtesy of NASA.

One of my favorite things to dream about was man finally conquering space. Recently I watched Carl Sagan’s series Cosmos: A personal voyage. One of the things I didn’t know was that we already have designs for spaceships that can travel to other solar systems. They’re pretty expensive to build, but they have already been designed.

I believe there will come the day when mankind will populate the galaxy. I’ve always wondered why the Bible didn’t talk about people traveling to other worlds. You know, establishing stations around the earth, and visiting other star systems.

So, the question is… why doesn’t the Bible give us hope for exploring space? I mean – if God created all those star systems, galaxies, and planets… why would He, in his infinite wisdom, create them for mere decoration, crushing our hopes of getting there finally one day, and exploring the whole universe?

Here’s a small science fiction utopia I wrote, roughly inspired by (and unworthy of) the works of Isaac Asimov and Dan Simmons:

In the future, mankind has mastered genetic manipulation. All diseases are gone, and our immune system has all the advantages taken from known species. Man can live and stay young for up to 150 years.

Instead of terraforming planets and extinguishing their existing lifeforms, man chose to change themselves and inhabitate all planets. These “ousters” have adapted their eyes to withstand the ultraviolet radiation from the sun; There are those adapted to microgravity, and there are those who have created insect-like wings to fly in low-gravity planets. The metabolism of these space-people makes them able to easily breathe ozone and toxic gases. Those who live in greater gravity planets, are much shorter and muscular than even the strongest human you could imagine.

Also, they have evolved a form of stasis appropriate for space travel – they won’t suffer from osteoporosis. Others are able to breathe underwater, and have built oceanic cities.

And yet, they kept their ears so they can listen to Mozart and Beethoven. Imagine an intergalactic concert where these superhumans come from the edges of the galaxy, to share a good time together.

All of this would be recorded in the not yet existing Encyclopedia Galactica.

Inspiring, isn’t it? Let’s compare it with  what the future holds for us, according to the Holy Scripture:
(roughly translated from my spanish Bible)

“When the thousand years have passed, Satan will be released from his prison, and will deceive the nations of the four corners of the world, God and Magog, whose armies, numerous as the sands of the sea, will gather for the battle… and they surrounded the camping of the Holy People, and the city that God loves. But fire fell from heaven and consumed them…

Then I saw a new Heaven and a new Earth; because the first Heaven and the first Earth had ceased to exist, and so had the sea. And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down from heaven…

The trone of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will worship him. They will see him face to face, and will carry His name on their foreheads. There will be no night, and those who live there shall not need lamps or sunlight, because The Lord will give them his light, and they shall rule for all the centuries.”

(Rev 20:7-9; 21:1-2; 22:3-5)

The New Jerusalem

That’s it?

A new city coming down from heaven? No planets to explore? (Granted, this city will occupy twice the size of Texas, but still…)

So, what will happen to the galaxies, and the globular clusters, and the other solar systems? No advancement of Science?

Okay, what kind of crap is this?

It is dull and boring. Why doesn’t God mention the stars and everything the universe is made of? Why?

Then, I realized, that the book of Revelations was written by people from the Iron Age, when the planets were just dots in the sky.

It wasn’t until the invention of the telescope in the 16th century that the planets could be clearly seen; Those were the times of Kepler, Galileo, Huygens and others.

The mere idea that there could be other worlds was unimaginable. The world had “four corners”. The Earth was flat. How come God never enlightened the prophets to tell them of these amazing things? And why did the promised future for us, “A new Heaven and a new Earth”, never included the space? Why not a new Solar System? A new galaxy? A new Universe, perhaps?

For one simple fact. This fact explains everything.

If there’s a God, He/She/It did NOT inspire the Bible.
The Bible was written by believers in a flat Earth,
who ignored the vastness of the Universe that is waiting for us.

Keep your New Jerusalem if you want, christians. I’ll choose the stars. As Carl Sagan said:

The sky calls to us.

If we do not destroy ourselves, we will one day venture to the stars.

Sci-fi art from art.eonworks.com

A more glorious dawn awaits: Not a sunrise, but a galaxy rise. A morning filled with 400 billion suns.

Advertisements

About geekatheist

Former catholic seminarist, gone atheist in 2011. I will speak about religion, human rights, and miscelaneous geek stuff.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to The future the Bible didn’t foresee

  1. rounder says:

    I linked to this article through reddit fyi. I have been an atheist for over almost 15 years, and this basic questioning has not been answered by theist in all that time. According to Genesis, ‘god made the stars also.’ What? Galaxies, quasars. the big bang, supernovae, pulsars, black holes, etc., and this is all Jehovah offers as ‘the rest of the shit in the ‘verse’? Please, try harder. The bible was written by men who thought the sky was made of crystal, and the stars were like a twinkling blanket put over the sky. By people who didn’t recognize the planets for what they were, and by people who thought that a sky daddy watched over them. The last gasp of the ‘god of the gaps’. Sorry religion, it’s been a good run, but it’s time for you to go now.

    • geekatheist says:

      I just imagined God as the T-1000 from Terminator 2. Always changing shapes to lure its victims. First it was the God of natural disasters; Then, it was the God of the Church and social order; Every time society advanced, one God died to be replaced with another one more fitting for society.

      Less than 150 years ago, Nietzsche spoke: “God is dead”. And now, God, just as the liquid metal robot, is changing its shape, trying uselessly to free itself from the lava pit of oblivion. The God of the gaps is dying.

      So be it.

      • You’re entirely right about the immutable, yet ever-changing “god”. I’ve always been mystified that believers can’t see what’s plainly in front of their faced.

  2. André says:

    “The Bible was written by believers in a flat Earth,”

    I disagree; it was written FOR believers in a flat Earth. Big difference, one that explains why any description of the future would be limited. But hey, as a former Catholic, I’m sure you’re quite familiar with interpreting things however you like.

    Cheap shot: Your new atheism is as ignorant as your former beliefs.

    “There is no God” This cannot be a fact, pure and simple, unless you can claim to know everything and that God is not within that knowledge. Unless you know everything, you cannot claim that he does not exist among that which you don’t know. Atheism is a logical fallacy. It is different to say “I don’t believe there’s a God”.

    • geekatheist says:

      You’re right, and you’re not the first one to criticize that last statement. I rephrased it.

      • André says:

        I am still skeptical you have access to the knowledge necessary to state unequivocally what actually inspired the Bible; also, it implies you have knowledge of what God is and what he can influence IF God existed, which is rather odd when you seem to believe he does not exist.

        Atheists are as amusing as the fundies with their crazy beliefs 🙂

  3. geekatheist says:

    @André: I’,m assuming that the personal, meddling-in-the-affair-of-men, omniscient, omnipotent and benevolent God the christians tell us about, does not exist (in fact, it’s contradictory, for reasons exposed in so many atheist books and writings).

    It is quite easy to appeal to ignorance. “We don’t know who or what caused it. Therefore, God!”

    Let’s remember Occam’s Razor: When two equally-valid propositions are presented, we should accept the simpler one. So, we have two explanations so far:

    1) A “God”, whose properties and motives we don’t know, inspired people to write the Bible, giving them crazy hallucinations and yet did NOT tell them about science (which could have saved thousands, if not millions, of lives) or how the world is.

    2) They made it up. Plain and simple.

    You can invent all the crazy theories you want, but the fact is that the writers of the Bible did NOT know that the Earth was round, they didn’t know either about the planets, galaxies, and the universe as a whole. Oh, “they didn’t need to… God wrote for our salvation, not for our science”.

    Excuses. (Also, I could add: If there’s a God, and this God created the whole universe, then the Earth, unless we harness science and technology, is for all intents and purposes, a cage. What kind of God would want us to live in a cage?)

    In any case, you can believe all the mythology written for us by the evangelists (who still can’t prove Jesus or the apostles really existed. Nazareth is already becoming controversial – none of the archaeological finds support its existence in biblical times), but facts are facts.

    They thought the Earth was flat. Our science and technology has been able to do what many of them could consider “a miracle”: Flying ships, cures for diseases such as polio, instant communication across the world (via cellphones)… we put men on the moon!

    And all they could come up with was fire falling from the sky, and a golden city?

    Silly superstitions.

  4. Dear geekatheist,

    I am writing to request permission to use materials in this post for our Freethought Forum community access television show. You can contact us through freethoughtform@yahoo.com
    Please include a copy of this message so that we know to what you are referring.
    Also any help with the image rights management would be appreciated.

    Page of interest: https://geekatheist.wordpress.com/2011/09/14/the-future-the-bible-didnt-foresee/#comments

    We have a live call in show Tuesday’s at 5:00 to 6:00 PM Eastern time. Visit ctvknox.org and scroll down for the live view.

    Thanks,
    Faithless Forrest
    FYI, a fan has been posting previous shows at: http://www.youtube.com/user/finitist

  5. Fibonacci says:

    I would have copied the one from King James’ Bible. It’s public domain.

  6. Pingback: Science in the Bible---that only prove Bible is the words of our Creator!!! - Page 29

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s