I wrote very recently about Ken Ham declaring aliens eternally doomed. Now, however, Ken Ham is claiming that headlines like my post (or those declaring aliens are going to hell) are mistaken. I just want to briefly look at this claim. In his most recent blog article, he states:
So, “is there intelligent life in outer space?” After reading the Huffington Post article and the other items on secular websites responding to my article, my answer is this: “there doesn’t seem to be much intelligent life left here on earth—let alone to find any in outer space!”
Well, that’s all well and good, but I’m curious as to how someone could say that I would be mistaken for thinking that this would somehow make invalid the analysis I made of his site regarding aliens being doomed. But it seems Ham is responding by simply saying that there are no intelligent beings elsewhere, and so we are supposed to conclude that that somehow means aliens would not be doomed (because there are none). But that doesn’t really meet the analysis of some of those who are critiquing Ham’s position.
What it comes down to is Ken Ham’s own words:
You see, the Bible makes it clear that Adam’s sin affected the whole universe. This means that any aliens would also be affected by Adam’s sin, but because they are not Adam’s descendants, they can’t have salvation.
Thus, according to Ken Ham himself, if aliens do exist, “they can’t have salvation.” I’m not sure exactly what distinction is to be made between this and going to hell, but it seems that Ham’s only answer is that there are no aliens, so this doesn’t apply. Again, that doesn’t meet the critique I’ve already leveled against his view.
But, perhaps I’m mistaken and Ham is merely trying to assert that only certain headlines are mistaken. He cites these specifically: “Creationist Ken Ham Says Aliens Will Go To Hell So Let’s Stop Looking For Them”; “Creationist Ken Ham: Aliens are going to hell so just stop looking for them.” I think it’s fair to say that these headlines are not exactly accurate representations of Ham’s view. Instead, Ham seems to be saying 1) Aliens don’t exist; 2) Because they don’t exist, we shouldn’t bother to spend time looking for them; 3) a theological reason for thinking they don’t exist is that they “can’t have salvation.”
It is point 3 which I took issue with in my post, but the headlines Ham cites seem to combine all 3 points into one without any clarity. Thus, I appreciate Ham clarifying his position. The points I brought up in my critique, however, still stand.
Ken Ham Declares Aliens Eternally Doomed– I analyze Ken Ham’s statements about aliens and the possibility for their salvation.
Alien life: Theological reflections on life on other planets– I engage in some [highly] speculative theology related to the possibility of aliens.
Did God Create the Universe for Humans?-Some Thoughts on God’s purposes for creating– I argue that God’s purposes in creating are needlessly limited when people object that God created the universe [only] for humankind.
Aliens that believe in God: The theological speculations of Robert Sawyer’s “Calculating God”– I reflect on a science fiction book, Calculating God, which has aliens that believe in God.
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