Sound Teaching

This is the teaching site of the West Side church of Christ in Fort Worth, TX. Unless otherwise indicated, all materials were written and prepared by Stan Cox

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Comet Mission Returns Home

Faster than a speeding bullet — actually, more than 10 times faster than a speeding bullet, Stardust will conclude its 7-year, 4.63 billion kilometer (2.88 billion mile) round-trip journey to comet Wild 2 Sunday, January 15, Pacific Standard Time (PST), making an historic re-entry in the wee morning hours to drop its precious comet cargo in the Utah desert well before dawn…

…”We are star stuff.”

Carl Sagan liked to remind people of that. Now, just a little more than a decade after the passing of The Planetary Society co-founder, Stardust is coming home with a bona fide sample of star stuff and the concept is being revisited in a very real way.

“The mantra for the mission is — ‘We are Stardust,'” Principal Investigator Don Brownlee, of the University of Washington, Seattle, revealed yesterday. “What is the connection — what does this mean to us? Well, we are learning about the origins of our solar system, the origins of the Sun and the formation of the planets. But the more direct connection is that virtually all of the atoms in our bodies and in our Earth were in interplanetary stardust before the solar system formed … and we brought back some of the early samples of this dust from this cosmic library.”

A.J.S. Rayl
The Planetary Society

Analysis:

It seems that these kinds of “opportunities” come weekly … some significant find or research which will unlock the fundamental secrets concerning the origin of the universe and man.

Whether it is a rock from the moon, or from Mars… a trip to the red planet… a discovery of some fossil… some far flung astronomical observance… or a submarine plumbing the deepest parts of the ocean… scientists are forever claiming the secret will be revealed just around the next corner.

Personally, I am a fan of science fiction, and have read many stories by H.G. Wells, Jules Verne, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Isaac Asimov, and other writers of the late 19th century up through the 1950’s. From these it becomes obvious that scientists of those ages made the same kind of claims. Though the efforts of scientists in ages past have given us mechanized flight, electrical lights and the internet, science has not given us the answers to life’s secrets. It is not the place of science to answer such questions, it is the place of faith. So, risking the charge that I am “anti-science”, I give you the concise answer of faith to three of the most sublime answers regarding our existence as humans upon this earth.

Question 1: Where did I come from? “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). “So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them” (Genesis 1:27).

Question 2: Why am I here? “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man” (Ecclesiastes 12:13, KJV).

Question 3: Where am I going? “And these [the unrighteous] will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life” (Matthew 25:46).

Perhaps it is time for men to stop looking to themselves for the answers to the questions of life, and turn to God, who “knows all things” (1 John 3:20).