INDIA - Plans for First Human in Space

Arno Froese

India’s space agency says that four astronaut candidates have been selected for its first human mission, targeted to launch by 2022, but they’ve not been publicly named or identified.

India hopes to join the United States, Russia and China as the world’s fourth nation capable of sending people to space. It has been developing its own crewed spacecraft, called Gaganyaan (or “sky vehicle” in Sanskrit), that would let two to three people orbit Earth on a weeklong spaceflight.

K Sivan, chairman of the Indian Space Research Organization, said his agency had government approval for its next robotic moon mission, Chandrayaan-3, and that work is already underway. That mission could launch in 2021.

India’s first successful lunar mission, Chandrayaan-1, put a spacecraft in orbit around the moon in 2008 and then later sent a probe hurtling toward the moon’s south pole, where it deliberately crashed and released material that got analyzed by the orbiter’s scientific instruments, helping to confirm the presence of water ice on the moon.

Then, in 2014, India put a satellite in orbit around Mars, beating its space rival China to the red planet and becoming the fourth national space agency to reach Mars.

So far, however, the only citizen of India to fly in space is Rakesh Sharma, an Indian Air Force pilot who traveled on a Russian spacecraft in 1984.

-www.npr.org, 1 January 2020

Arno's commentary

India prides itself as the world’s largest democracy, with a population of approximately 1.3 billion. Eighty percent are Hindu, 14% Muslim, and 2.3% Christian. Life expectancy stands at 69.1 years, and per capita GDP is listed at $7,200. India’s economy is now the third largest in the world, at $9.4 trillion. 

India, like all other nations on planet earth, is just as much subject to the god of this world. Because of their success, having reached third place in world economy, finances are available to reach the moon. Why to the moon? Because it is the prestige of the nations; everyone wants to be the greatest, the privileged, the favored of their god. But the prophet Obadiah has this to say: “Though thou exalt thyself as the eagle, and though thou set thy nest among the stars, thence will I bring thee down, saith the Lord” (Obadiah 4). Although this prophecy is directly addressed to Edom, the nations are included, “…We have heard a rumour from the Lord, and an ambassador is sent among the heathen…” (Obadiah 1). After the prophet accuses Edom and exposes their wrongdoing, he writes: “For the day of the Lord is near upon all the heathen” (Obadiah 15a).

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

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