Fabulous questions. This is just my opinion from stuff I’ve read and been taught and people I’ve spoke to over the years, take it all with a hefty pinch of salt and fire away.
I loved asking Qu. 1 all the time to Christians before I found that path (and afterwards just for fun, especially to Creationists).
For years and years I believed in James Lovelock’s Gaia theory of the Earth being a singular living breathing organism. I thought God was tied up into that in some unexplained way that was justified by others with religion. I asked a non-Christian Aussie geophysicist working in Cambridge his opinion regarding this recently, he told me “mate you’re thinking much too small, the Earth as a living organism, I reckon it’d have to be solar system or galaxy size”.
A God creating and controlling the universe is definitely not outside the realms of serious possibility. I genuinely believe as our scientific prowess develops over time this will become increasingly evident.
No doubt any other planet would have different interpretations of the actual religion part (services, histories, stories, experiences, laws) as we can’t even agree on our own planet between or within religions about this. But I wouldn’t be surprised if the key concept of “love my neighbour” was the same. I just hope they pull it off better than us. Then again it may be completely different, if any at all.
Incidentally for about a year as a new Christian I still believed Gaia. If you want a fascinating critique of naturalism written by a man who achieved a triple first from Cambridge, I cannot recommend Miracles by C.S Lewis enough, it changed my view of how God and the natural world could interact completely.
My opinion is the Bible is a narrative of the journey of our species search for God, how other planet’s religions would interact with that is simply undeterminable. We probably should follow John’s advice and make our ways straight (John 1:23) before this happens. In God we Trust.
The Bible says human lifespan was limited to 120 years (Genesis 6:3). Although people did live beyond 120 years after this point, I believe Jacob was the last recorded (147 years).
This figure seems to agree with current thinking in and around the science and healthcare profession. Cell division has limitations and is not infinite, protective telomeres eventually are removed from the ends of DNA in time by the process of replication, which then starts to fray the ends of the molecule, sooner or later this continued process will lead to disruption of vital genetic material. I’m guessing this does not help with the vital organ failure that seems to get most people regardless of musculoskeletal and neurological systems before 120 years.
Short answer, does this make a difference to the search for God, no. The Word written in the Bible is truly amazing, it is a wonderful story of various Spirit filled men and women describing their journey and relationship with God through the ages and that of their people, encouraging, teaching, warning and guiding.
Christianity turns narrow and legalistic whenever we have misunderstood scripture as the last word in theology rather than as an invitation to do theology and apply it to our very short lives on Earth. Ideally scientific discovery should supplement life, theology, philosophy and all forms of the arts; combine all these and…...
P.s. Off topic
Godef mentioned downloadable memories; this could be closer than we think. Nanotechnology could potentially supply microchips of encyclopaedic knowledge that could be merged with human neurones to access the required information on demand, maybe even with wireless capabilities. Companies have also been investigating the enzyme telomerase for years now which could have major anti-aging uses.
I have stated before and will continue to, science and the search will God will have to merge soon for the good of the planet. Jesus preaches absolute love for God and fellow man, like religion or not, these kinds of pure altruistic morals are required in some form for the ethical decisions regarding the evolution of our species. Worst nightmare scenario is a set of competing private companies with a view for simply making money, generating fame and an unfortunate tendency for secrecy pushing this stuff quickly through regardless.
I’m in no way saying that any technology is bad, just that they have to be used and developed patiently in the right way, always keeping in mind the good of the planet long term. At the moment science alone does not do this (unfortunately neither does religion