“But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed.”[Galatians 1:8]
What are the theological implications if extraterrestrial life happened to exist on other planets?
Jesus Christ the Creator
First, the Scriptures are clear that God is the Creator of the entire universe … not just our solar system. This means that everything that exists within our universe — both visible and invisible — is accountable to God. More specifically, the Bible attributes Jesus Christ, God the Son, with the creative work of the universe, saying that “All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.” [John 1:4]
Nothing in all the universe was made apart from Jesus Christ. He is Creator and Lord over all creation, so even in the most unlikely case that other “alien” lifeforms potentially exist somewhere else in the universe, they would be morally and ontologically accountable to the Creator Jesus Christ, who is Lord over all.
“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.[Colossians 1:15-17]
Man Made in the Image of God
Secondly, the Bible is clear that only mankind was created in the image of God and were originally commissioned to be God’s representatives and co-regents on earth. Man was created uniquely by God and set apart to reflect His nature and glory throughout the earth.
“Then God said, ‘Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.’[Genesis 1:26-27]
So God created man in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.”
The gospel story pays exclusive attention to the earth and to mankind. One could say that the Biblical narrative is geocentric, as God’s focus begins with the earth [Genesis 1:1] and ends with a new heaven and new earth [Revelation 21:1]. Clearly the Scriptures reveal the existence of spiritual beings in the heavenly realms and provide glimpses into the significance of the unseen, spiritual battle taking place around us. But the gospel story is directly connected to God’s interaction with mankind on earth, which involves “things into which angels long to look.” [1 Peter 1:12]
Our Creator God didn’t choose to permanently become an angel, nor did He choose to reveal Himself as an obscure alien from a distant galaxy. The incarnation of Jesus Christ implies that God the Son, having taken on human form, is now forever both God and man. By wrapping Himself in humanity, the eternal God and Creator of the universe has chosen to forever rule and reign in human form. Jesus has given eternal significance to mankind by become a man.
“In these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs.[Hebrews 1:2-5]
For to which of the angels did God ever say,
‘You are my Son,
today I have begotten you?‘
The Special and Universal Work of Redemption
Thirdly, Christ’s work of redemption is specific to mankind, and does not leave room for other alien lifeforms. God’s plan of salvation for mankind was born in His heart even before the creation itself. As Paul says, “even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him.” [Ephesians 1:4]
Also, the Bible is clear that Christ only “suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous.” [1 Peter 3:18]. He died for mankind once and for all. Not for aliens.
“And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment, so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.”[Hebrews 9:27-28]
Again, in the most improbable case that other sentient, moral beings do exist somewhere in the universe, they would not be created in the image of God and would be excluded from the redemptive work of Jesus Christ and therefore without hope of salvation. This raises all kinds of ethnical questions about why God would create other conscious beings in the universe who were not redeemable. Of course, the answer is that God has not created other unredeemable alien lifeforms because that does not correspond with His character and nature.
Furthermore, the Scriptures speak of a final destruction and restoration of the entire universe after the return of Jesus Christ. Paul reminds us that “the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.” [Romans 8:19-21]
Sin has cursed and corrupted the entire creation — which includes the furthest reaches of the material universe and the spiritual realm. The Apostle Peter echoes this reality by saying that “by the same word the heavens and earth that now exist are stored up for fire, being kept until the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.” [2 Peter 3:7] Peter is clear that on the Day of the LORD, the very elemental properties of the entire universe will be destroyed by fire before God establishes a new heaven and earth.
Consequently, this would mean that every galaxy and planet in the universe will be destroyed at the final judgment of Christ. This is not good news for unsuspecting alien civilizations just waiting to be consumed in the fire of a Holy God. Again, why would God create or allow for alien civilizations that are only going to be indiscriminately destroyed in the end?
“But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed. Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they burn! But according to his promise we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.”[2 Peter 3:10-13]
The Catholic Response
It should be noted that the Catholic Church has broached the alien topic of discussion on many occasions, leaving the door open for the possibility of extraterrestrial life on other planets. Not surprisingly, the Catholic Church also has repeatedly attempted to reconcile Darwinian evolution with Biblical creation, embracing billions of years as the age of the universe. Catholic leadership seem to be most interested in whether or not alien beings would have a soul.
For example, Father Robert Spitzer, a Jesuit who was the president of Gonzaga University, believes that higher evolved alien lifeforms potentially could have a soul.
“If there is any other intelligent life in the universe that can do the things we do, they would have to have a transphysical soul … They would know about religion. They would have a sense of infinity. We would have to find them, catechize them and tell them about Jesus and baptize them.”[Father Robert Spitzer — http://www.ncregister.com/daily-news/of-space-aliens-and-the-catholic-faith [Feb. 2018]
Even Pope Francis, sharing a homily in May of 2014, addressed the possibility of being confronted with alien lifeforms. He said, “If—for example—tomorrow an expedition of Martians came, and some of them came to us, here…Martians, right? Green, with that long nose and big ears, just like children paint them…And one says, ‘But I want to be baptized!’ What would happen?”
Exactly. What would happen?
A Biblical Response to the Alien Deception
Taking all of this into consideration, I would like to offer my interpretation to what is happening with the modern obsession with UFOs and ancient aliens.
It is apparent that there is a growing fascination, especially among our younger generations, with the possibility that highly-evolved, transcendent alien beings not only hold the key to our past, but also to our future. Alien ideology and Ufology effectively remove Jesus Christ as both Creator and Savior and replace Him with the ancient-alien “gods” of fantasy and science fiction.
The ancient alien narrative is consistent with New Age Theosophy and the quest for esoteric knowledge through Satanic occult rituals. The overwhelming majority of alien abductions involve sexual and psychological abuse, along with mind manipulation. Not to mention that the consistent theme from these messengers from outer space directly challenges the person and nature of Jesus Christ and His gospel. Almost all alien abductions are dark, abusive, manipulative, and deceptive experiences that leave the victim traumatized.
The only name that commands power over these sinister beings is the name of Jesus! It begs the question … why would these highly-advanced beings from other galaxies travel so far across the galaxy only to dissuade humans from believing in the Biblical Jesus? Why would they be so enthralled with the person of Jesus? And why would the name of Jesus have so much power over them?
The Eschatological Implications
Here is what I believe is going on.
- Satan has been using Darwinian evolution and the fascination with life on other planets to grip the imagination of mankind into looking for divine beings that can effectively replace the God of the Bible.
- Spiritual personalities of evil from the heavenly realm are cloaking themselves as messengers of light, masquerading in this world in the form of UFOs and also as light-bearing, transcendent beings from “other planets.”
- These demonic beings are not coming from galaxies millions of light years away, which violates the laws of physics, but rather are entering our world from other dimensions — the spiritual realm. This would explain how many “UFOs” can just instantly disappear out of thin air.
- Alien abductions should be understood as real experiences involving supernatural, demonic beings, who are using fear, lies, abuse, and manipulation to control and deceive human beings.
- These demonic beings have no power over anyone who belongs to Jesus Christ but must submit to Him and His Holy name.
- Satan is using the growing obsession with aliens to prepare an entire generation for one of the greatest deceptions of the last days. If our generation is looking for highly-advanced beings to return to earth and offer eternal life through transcendent knowledge and technological advancement, then masses of people will flock to worship at their feet.
- Jesus repeatedly warns us about being deceived with false signs and wonders, and Paul says that “the coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders, and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.” [2 Thessalonians 2:9-10]
- This is a salvation issue! The church must wake up and become proactive in communicating the truth of the gospel. Satan is disguising his message of death and destruction within one of the most popular movements of our day. The devil wants to replace Jesus, the True Creator and Savior, with false messiahs called ancient aliens, who will come offering an alternative salvation for mankind that only will end in death.
May we never forget that Jesus Christ has triumphed over all the principalities and powers and cosmic rulers of this age who are masquerading as angels and aliens of light. We have the answer. We have the truth. We have the good news. It’s time we share it with a world searching and seeking for another way of salvation and eternal life before it is too late.