Reaching out at Roswell
For the first time, “Roswaliens” get to hear the evolution connection
Roswell, New Mexico (USA) is generally regarded as the UFO capital of the world.
This is because in June 1947 rancher Mac Brazel found debris of an unknown origin on the property he was managing. In early July he took some of the pieces into town to the local sheriff who, thinking they might have some military significance, duly forwarded them to the local Army Air Base.
Then on July 8 a sensation occurred when the front page of the local Roswell Daily Record newspaper reported that a “flying disk” had been found. Although the newspaper later reportedly retracted the claim that it was a flying saucer, it was too late to retract the imaginations of readers. News spread around the world, and subsequently many people suspected a military coverup of the facts.
Things remained quiet for many years, but in 1980, a book called The Roswell Incident seemingly blew the lid off what really happened at Roswell. With its heavy conspiratorial overtones and claims that the government had captured alien bodies from the wreckage, it helped change the dynamic of this small town forever.
Every July 4 weekend, the town of Roswell gets invaded by aliens. Not the little green men type, but by people from all over the world as they come to celebrate the time that they believe benevolent visitors from another planet met their demise in the deserts of New Mexico. These annual visitors have become known as “Roswaliens”. Although the UFO phenomenon has been around for many years, most people, and in particular the church at large, seem unaware that this is a rapidly growing phenomenon. Quite simply, it’s not going away! The so called “loopy” claims of the tens of millions of people who have seen strange objects in the sky, or even the claims that up to 4 million Americans have been abducted by aliens,1 is increasingly being given seeming scientific validity.
Beliefs in evolution occurring all over the alleged 14 billion year old universe have led to extrapolations that older (on the evolutionary scale), wiser and therefore more technologically advanced aliens have been visiting the earth for possibly millennia in their hyperdrive spaceships and so on. The sheer weight of claims would indeed suggest something is going on and indeed there is, although it is not extraterrestrial in nature.
Increasingly, some of the world’s best-known scientists, struggling to find a naturalistic explanation for the encyclopedias’ worth of complex coded information found on the DNA molecule of every living creature on this planet, have even suggested that aliens may have deliberately seeded the earth with life from their own home planets. This is known as directed panspermia.
What was once flaky is now being seriously considered
Indeed, the ardently atheistic Sir Francis Crick, who won a Nobel Prize (along with colleague James Watson) for their discovery of the DNA molecule in 1953, makes such a claim. Also, the world renowned physicist Paul Davies has suggested that our DNA contains hidden messages from aliens and we humans only need to develop the technology via our own evolution to be able to unravel them.
In our rapidly changing culture the belief in “alien creators” is yet another issue, extrapolated from a materialistic worldview with evolution at its foundation. It’s one that the church needs to get up to speed with answers for, or it will be increasingly viewed as irrelevant in the shadow of this growing belief system. Many people come to Roswell on this holiday weekend looking for meaning and purpose, trying to find their place in the universe. Such seekers are open to the Gospel message. It is a great opportunity for the church, but so far it has failed to address or embrace this significant group of people.
On our way to Roswell, the miles seemed endless as we drove across the flat New Mexico desert. In the distance we could see a town. As we made our approach it became abundantly clear which town it was. It is like no other. What confronted us seemed incongruous with the dusty and inhospitable desert surroundings, because we were immediately ambushed by modern billboards and advertising hoardings depicting the iconic stylized image of the little “gray” alien (sometimes he was depicted as green too!).
As we drove down the main streets even the streetlamps were dressed up as aliens. The hotels, the fast food chains, including one McDonalds restaurant in the shape of a flying saucer, are all riding the UFO wave that brings millions of dollars to this town each year. Roswell knows only too well that UFOs and aliens means big business. For example, the most popular entertainment genre bar none is science fiction, and polls suggest that 80% of Western populations believe in extraterrestrial life and that it may also be visiting our planet.
As we visited the UFO Museum and Research Centre, it was disturbing to hear the conversations going on with numerous people about their views on UFOs and aliens, and in particular, how they are given over to it. It had become their substitute religion. We certainly felt like the odd ones out in this environment. Even more disturbing was seeing the large numbers of children who were being exposed to the UFO propaganda—their parents blissfully unaware of the potential danger in desensitizing young minds to what is a powerful spiritual deception. Even the UFO mardi gras that takes place down the main street on a Saturday night mixed alien figures with Snow White and other children’s characters. It was just more evidence that aliens are now mainstream culture that will cause future generations to just simply accept that ET life exists.
Chipping away at the edges
Yet, in this seemingly impenetrable wave of euphoria (more like “UFOforia”) that sweeps over the town, a little known group of Christians has been swimming against the tide for 10 years. Guy Malone and Joe Jordan have many years of experience in dealing with people who believe they have had alien encounters.
I have known Joe Jordan for several years now and his research helped me blow the lid off the abduction phenomenon in my book Alien Intrusion: UFOs and the Evolution Connection. He described himself as a former “crystal-ball-gazing New-Ager”, when, a few years ago while working as a field investigator for MUFON2 he (and a former colleague) tried to think “outside the square” when trying to figure out what was really happening to people who were claiming to be abducted by aliens. He discovered something significant. It was that “abductions” were being halted in their tracks by people who called out in the name of Christ. Further investigation also revealed that people who professed to be practicing born-again Christians seemed to be generally immune from such experiences. He noticed that many in MUFON had already realized this, but were ignoring the seeming aberration in their alien hypotheses, because it did not fit in with their preexisting belief that such experiences were of an extraterrestrial nature. Not satisfied, Joe wanted to find out what it was about Christians that “aliens didn’t like”. After being led to a Bible study as part of his research Joe became a Christian and realized that he was ultimately dealing with a spiritual phenomenon and not an extraterrestrial one. (For the full story of Joe and the abduction phenomena in general read Alien Intrusion: UFOs and the Evolution Connection.)
Guy Malone and his wife Nicole are former “experiencers” (we don’t like to use the word “abductee” because this is not what really happens to people). When exposed to the Gospel of Christ their experiences ceased. They now live in Roswell and feel called to help other experiencers realize that they are being seduced by spiritual encounters of the “ungodly” kind. That is, by fallen angels masquerading as glorious “space brothers”. Each year with the assistance of Joe, they organize an event utilizing Christian speakers to coincide with the annual Roswell Festival.
The first Christian symposium on the UFO phenomenon
After trying a number of formats over the years, this year they decided to conduct the very first Christian symposium on aliens, inviting speakers from a number of fields (including myself), to reveal the truth behind the UFO phenomenon. In fact, I was privileged to be the “keynote” speaker and I took the opportunity to explain that foundational worldview presuppositions are the key to understanding why significant proportions of the population believe that life evolved on other planets.
By advertizing this as a Christian explanation of the phenomenon and dealing with the subject matter head on, the Christian attendance was the best ever. And the excitement level was palpable. Many had never heard about the problems with evolution theory as I explained that it was really a whole-of-life philosophy that sought to explain the evolution of the cosmos, the geological record and all biological lifeforms whether here on Earth or elsewhere in the universe. Towards the end of my talk I showed evidence for the spiritual nature of the UFO phenomenon and gave a strong challenge to those present to consider their own spiritual fate for the eternity to come.
My wife and daughter accompanied me to the event and manned the large array of creation resources we had on display. At the end of each day (prior to my talk—which was two hours long!) they would mention that many people looked at the titles with bewilderment as they received questions and comments such as, “So you don’t believe we came from apes?”, or “Are you those people who believe the Earth is only thousands of years old?” The main question that kept popping up was “Couldn’t God have created life on other planets?” This same topic was a matter of conjecture among the speakers present, but something that I feel very strongly about because of its implications for the very Gospel of Christ and the potential violation of Scripture. Many interesting discussions ensued after I outlined the problems during my presentation. On a live radio broadcast from Roswell, Joe Jordan commented that “Since he got here, Gary Bates has been like a bulldog on this creation issue and the age of the earth”. He also mentioned how my own book had filled in the missing piece of the puzzle and had finally helped him understand the big picture properly.
After my talk, it seems that many wrong beliefs and assumptions were overturned. Indeed, I and my family felt overwhelmed by the numbers of people who warmly expressed their appreciation on how the presentation had helped, including one lady who said that her “thinking had been turned around 180 degrees” on the subject.
Because so many people had so many differing views about so many different aspects of the UFO phenomenon, conversations, discussions and debates were prolific. I took exception to one older man who was clearly an evangelist for the UFO cause as he went around the gathered throng handing out literature encouraging people to “channel” alien entities. I challenged him about his beliefs in evolution and although he claimed to be a Christian, he revealed that at least 3 times a week he believes that he is in contact with alien beings who told him that there is truth about the space gods in all the great religions and that Jesus Christ is really an advanced extraterrestrial. Robust discussion ensued as I felt it necessary to challenge the illogic of his statements. He avoided answering the questions that would cause his answers to obviously undermine his own foundational assumptions, and he eventually left. It is incredibly tragic that such blatant spiritual deception is going on around us. The area of spiritual warfare is something that really should be “bread and butter” for the church. I was disappointed to find out that not a single church in Roswell (and there are over 70) makes an effort to engage or reach the tens of thousands who visit Roswell each year.
Exhausted and excited
It is no exaggeration to say we were literally exhausted after the event due to all the interactions. It was thrilling to present the creation message and truth that Jesus Christ is the King of the Universe to such a fertile audience (the expression “like a kid in a candy store” comes to mind). It was simply exhilarating. I am also incredibly excited at the potential to reach significant numbers of people in Roswell who are very open and looking for the truth.
I commend the efforts of Guy Malone and Joe Jordan in trying to do what they can to uncover the deception behind the UFO phenomenon and bring the Gospel to those who desperately need it. They need the support of the wider church and as much help as they can get. Next year, the Lord willing, I have committed CMI to assist them in lifting the profile of their Christian symposiums to be held in Roswell each year. Hopefully, together we can educate and equip the church with answers and show that there is nothing to be scared of in confronting this phenomenon and embracing many of the seekers who are following it.
If you think you can make it to Roswell next year to attend the lectures and help your own church understand the UFO culture, and to also assist in some local outreach (like handing out brochures to promote the symposium during the weekend of the festival), then please send me an email via the contact us section on this site. I’ll forward it to Guy and Joe. You can also sign up to our free Infobytes to be alerted about next year’s event.
- Bates, G., Alien Intrusion: UFOs and the Evolution Connection. Master Books, Greenforest, pp. 252–253, 2005. Return to text.
- MUFON is an acronym for Mutual UFO Network, the world’s largest clearing house for UFO investigations and reports based in the US. Return to text.