by Heath Rogers
Have you ever wondered where the Moon came from? Those of us who believe in the Bible know the answer to this question. God created the moon on the fourth day (Gen. 1:14-19). However, atheists must come up with other explanations that do not include God.
In an article titled Earth’s Moon is Rare Oddball (from SPACE.com, Nov. 20, 2007), Dave Mosher points out the fact that our moon is unique when compared to the moons of other planets. In his article, he explains how some scientists believe our moon came into existence.
Shortly after the sun formed about 4.5 billion years ago, scientists think a vagrant planet as big as Mars smacked into infant Earth and ripped off a chunk of our home’s smoldering mantle. The rocky, dusty leftovers fell into orbit around our wounded planet, eventually coalescing into the moon we see today.
Mosher continues, "The scenario is unique among other moons in the solar system, which formed side-by-side with their planet or were captured by its gravity."
Indeed, our moon is an oddity. Of the four inner planets (those planets closest to the Sun), only Earth and Mars have moons. The outer planets have numerous moons. The two moons orbiting Mars (believed to be asteroids that were captured by the planet’s gravitational pull) are very small compared to the size of our moon. If one were to examine the solar system, our moon certainly would "stick out" like a sore thumb.
However, science has proven that this planetary oddity actually plays a vitally important role in supporting life upon this planet. The moon is primarily responsible for our tides. The tides generate a large-scale circulation that keeps the oceans from becoming stagnant. The tides also allow nutrients from the continents to be flushed out into the oceans, keeping them nutrient-rich and able to support life. Any scientist will tell you that life is dependent upon water. The moon has a positive impact upon the largest bodies of water on our planet.
Also, in 1993 it was discovered that the moon is responsible for stabilizing the tilt of the Earth’s axis. This tilt of 23.5 degrees is what gives us our seasons. In the summer months, the northern hemisphere is pointed toward the sun. Six months later, it is pointed away from the sun. Because of the stability of this tilt, we can expect the seasons to change throughout the year. The farmer knows when to plant, and can expect a growing season and a harvest. If this tilt were not fixed, we would have prolonged periods of extreme weather. No one would be able to grow food. In fact, with extreme tilts in the earth’s axis, large areas of the planet would be in total darkness for months, or even years, at a time. Imagine the effect of the North Pole temporarily relocating to someplace like Chicago! The moon gives our planet the stability that it needs to sustain life.
What the scientific community calls "unique," the Bible-believing Christian sees as evidence for a Creator. The evolutionist explains our moon’s formation as the result of a planetary collision; an accident, a mistake. I suggest that, instead, God gave our unique planet exactly what it needed in order for it to sustain life. Not only are we "fearfully and wonderfully made" (Ps. 139:14), but so is our planet, along with its moon.
"The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork" (Ps. 19:1). The next time you look at the moon in the night sky, remember that it is there for a reason. It is an ever-present reminder of God’s wisdom, design and purpose.