A Shining Planet NOT Called Earth

February 18, 2016 AD

Another “Shining” Planet?

Look up into the sky! It’s a bird. No, it’s an airplane. No, it’s neither. So, what is it?



WFIRST NASA looks for another shining planet like Earth
The Wide Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST)

This is the newest space exploration equipment from NASA. On Facebook, NASA says,

Meet our new space telescope! With a view 100 times bigger than that of our Hubble Space Telescope, the Wide Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST) will help unlock secrets of the universe, discover new worlds and advance the search of planets suitable for life. This spacecraft is slated to launch in the mid-2020s.

If old enough to remember that old TV show Battlestar Galactica, you will better appreciate the title of this posting. You see, Battlestar Galactica was an Mormon-inspired odyssey to find a “shining planet called Earth” where a trove of wandering adventurers could settle down.

Reality Check

Are there planets in the solar system that may be able to support human life? Many scientists think this to be true. Why are they even looking? I truly have not a clue.

The nearest Earth-like possibly inhabitable planet is Kepler 452b. John Grunsfeld, the associate administrator for Nasa’s mission directorate, calls 452b “Earth 2.0”. Can I agree?

Kepler 452b has five times the mass of our planet and twice the gravity. If you weigh 165 pounds here, your weight there would be 330 pounds. Where is this “shining” planet? 452b is 1,400 light years distant from our planet. If you could accelerate to the speed of light (186,000 miles per second) and survive the acceleration, your journey to that planet would take you 1,400 years, 14 centuries.


According to Space.com, “Tens of thousands of people are prepared to leave their families, jobs and lives behind for a one-way trip to Mars.” Applicants so far exceed 165,000 in number.

There are two apparent motivations at play. One wants to escape this dreadful place called Earth. Another anticipates the soon-to-come end of the world.

Another set of folks wants to disprove the existence of God. However, ironically, the more scientists delve into the matter, the more scientists become believers in God. Consider the story of scientist  Francis S. Collins in the following video.

Dr. Collins set out to prove his atheism, but the more he looked, the more he realized the evidence of God.

I became a believer in Jesus Christ August 1974 after five years of marriage and two wonderful sons. I became a new creature, a new man, and God has been hammering me on his divine anvil for over 40 years, working to shape me into the man He wishes me to be.

For now, Earth is my home. Some day, Heaven will be my new address. What about you?

Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 

John White
Rockwall, Texas

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