Young Earth Collision

No Ordinary Moon

The prevailing scientific evidence shows that the moon was formed some 4.25 billion years ago when a Mars sized planet collided nearly head on with the ancient Earth vaporizing a large part of the two planets and spewing out matter into a space about equal to the present day Earth Moon distance. This matter eventually coalesced to form the Earth and Moon we have today. As an echo of this collision the moon is moving away from the Earth at several centimeters a year.

What was extraordinary about this collision is the extreme precision with which everything had to happen in just the right manner at just the right time and with just the right amount of energy. Anything less would have left behind a permanently lifeless planet. The impact liberated the ancient Earth from a dense suffocating atmosphere of crushing pressure and extreme heat. In it's place was left a breathable atmosphere with water vapor, perfect for life. The energy of the collision and the gravity of the new Earth was just right to drive off ammonia and methane and retain water vapor which is just fractionally heavier. A more energetic impact would have vaporized a large part of the mass of the Earth and Moon, driving off volatile compounds (water and CO2 etc) necessary for the atmosphere and for life. Less energetic and the Moon would not have been formed at the correct distance. Venus, our moonless sister planet, was not so fortunate. It has a crushing pressure of 93 Earth atmospheres and is hot enough to melt lead!

That's only half of the wonder, though. The rotation of the earth has to be just right to sustain life. If it was too fast there would be devastating wind and mega-hurricanes that would dwarf what we currently experience. If the rotation was too slow the surface of Earth would alternately bake and freeze making a life sustaining climate impossible. A thermally stable climate could not form without the rotation rate we currently have. The Moon was necessary to put the brakes on the fast rotation rate of the ancient Earth, and it had to start this braking process at exactly the right time so that life would emerge in a stable solar-system.

And yet there is still more. The earth rotates about it's axis but the axis wobbles like a spinning top. If this wobble was left unchecked it would be too great to allow for the formation of a stable climate. Compared to its parent planet the Moon is 50 times more massive than any other moon in the solar system. It is rare and unusual and massive enough to stabilize the wobble of the earths rotation axis to permit the formation of a stable climate compatible to life.

The probability of all of this occurring by random chance is hard to estimate but trillions to one against would not be remotely rare enough. It is simply breathtaking and shows an astonishing degree of forethought and loving design that went into the crafting of out home planet.

Prayer Reflection

You might have noticed in the formation of the Moon how God never wastes. He is completely life giving. Whatever He does, wherever He passes, life pours forth  (Ezek 47:7-12). He gathers up all the fragments so that nothing may be wasted (John 6:12).

An ancient planetary body passed through the ancient Earth system and left an indelible mark that would change the environment for the rest of time. The Earth was transformed utterly. Lower life forms emerged,  then higher life forms, then ultimately, humankind, the pinnacle of life, and finally the perfection of humankind - Christ Jesus, the God-man, who is it's first cause and final end.

Take a moment to place yourself in the presence in the Father and reflect on how He looks upon you. Now ask yourself - is your trajectory through this world life giving? What do you leave in your wake - with your words, your glances, your actions, with your thoughts, with your use of the gift of time? What would be your epitaph? What would people say you left behind upon passing this way?... Tell the Father how you feel about this, what your desire is, how you would like to change.

Be encouraged, no matter what your past, all can be gathered up into a new place where all works for the good, all is new and life giving and becomes a source of good. Sometimes the impact of passing through life is violent and seems meaningless, but when the dust settles it can all become beautiful, fall into place and become a source of good, yes even the sins and dark secrets - if you choose it and bring them into the light. But you must give the chaos to the master artist, to the One who conducts, who orchestrates and who gathers up all the pieces, all the mistakes and disasters, so that nothing may be wasted. The time to begin again, the time to change, is always now.

 

 

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