Ponders Baptist Church - online
ready always to give an answer to every man that asks
Eclipses are interesting. On Earth we get the best eclipses in the
solar system. In fact, there are no other perfect eclipses
happening anywhere else. (A perfect eclipse is where the angular
diameter of the eclipsing object matches the angular diameter of
the object being eclipsed).
The planet Jupiter has sixty-nine moons. Only some of them are
round, and none perfectly match the angular diameter of the sun.
Even if they did match, the greater distance to the sun would
make their eclipses much less spectacular than the views we get
from Earth. Itís the same for every other planet in the solar
system. Only Planet Earth gets the really big shows.
One reason that we get to see such fantastic eclipses is that, with
the exception of water vapor, our atmospheric gasses are clear. If
they werenít, imagine where the science of astronomy would be.
Also, that same clear atmosphere does a great job of burning
meteors before they hit us. Atmospheric gasses prevent rain
drops from falling like bullets. They provide the right oxygen
levels to fuel life while mixed with enough nitrogen to keep the
oxygen from exploding. Earthís atmosphere blocks enough lethal
radiation from space to view an eclipse. Our precise combination
of atmospheric gasses regulate temperature to keep us in that
comfy range about 500 degrees above the surrounding universe.
That perfect amount of heat is generated from our just-so sun at
a just-so distance with just-so seasons caused by a just-so rotation
on a just-so tilted axis.
Donít forget the snacks to give you enough energy to view the
eclipse. Planet Earth is the only place in the universe with
agriculture. Think of all the parts needed to grow a kernel of
wheat. By the way, did I mention our just-so magnetic field that
gobbles up cosmic radiation? Did I mention our just-so planet
diameter and mass to give us our just-so gravitational field?
Without all of these things in place, no one would see an eclipse.
In order to see an eclipse, you need to have the right equipment.
Stereoscopic, binocular, color vision helps. You will need a brain
attached by an optic nerve to a retina and lens, too, along with
the billion other eyeball parts that keep the system functioning
automatically. Image stabilization software is necessary, and
youíll require an automatic feedback loop on your iris. The list
goes on and on as every beginning student of biology knows.
Donít forget your eclipse glasses! They were designed and
manufactured by people with brains and dexterous hands.
Itís a great understatement to say that our place in the universe is
special. If this were not so, we would discover intelligence in all
directions beyond the Earth. Did you know that scientists used to
believe that intelligent extraterrestrial life was common? Some
scientists still believe in extraterrestrial life because they havenít
yet accepted how complex even the simplest life is!
Solar eclipses are a reminder of just how special we are in the
universe. Each year scientists discover more evidence that points
to our Creator. Theyíre methodically catching up to what we
knew from the beginning, as the Bible recognized our special
creation long ago:
The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament
sheweth his handywork.