Things To Act
Saturday, July 24, 2004
Space Colonization II
I've been meaning to respond to the comments on this post below for a while now.
*Near-earth colonies can probably be considered 'part of Earth' for all intents and purposes. And it is true that present technology seems unlikely to lead to easy travel to other solar systems anytime soon (though sci-fi fans are reluctant to rule it out, of course). However, this line of thought seems to imply two possibilities: A) offplanet colonization attempts will never be self-sufficient, in which case why bother (except for the technological and scientific advancement, of course), or B) we'll work out how to build self-sustaining environments off Earth, in which case there's no reason not to send out an intergenerational colonization ship (the idea is popular enough in sci-fi that it seems certain that someone would want to try as the technology became available). This leads us back to having some number of people outside the range of action when the Second Coming occurs, which seems weird to me (though several easy solutions exist).
*I would hesitate to assume that colonizing space is a 'trigger' for the Second Coming. However, if it is, this doesn't imply that we should seek it any more than it implies that we should shy away. After all, war in the Middle East is a 'trigger,' but we don't encourage that.
*I would also hesitate to assume that colonizing space is outside the bounds the Lord has set for us--at least without Him making it considerably clearer. On the whole, space colonization seems to me to be A) morally neutral without further guidance, B) from a secular perspective, an enormously good thing, and C) from a theological perspective, a probably futile endeavor. But as many other works (seeking world peace, an end of poverty, etc) are also ultimately futile though immensely important given what prophecies we have, perhaps this argument isn't as meaningful as I first thought.
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