“Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me.”
There are a number of species of bacteria that possess tiny chains of crystal particles called magnetosomes. Magnetosomes, as the name suggests, have iron in them to help the bacteria sense magnetic fields for navigation. They can also help the bacteria find food.
These bacteria live in salty, sulfurous waters and sediments. Unlike most bacteria that have magnetosomes, the three species that prefer sulfurous waters don’t make their tiny compasses out of iron oxide. Rather, they combine iron and sulfur to make a crystal called greigite.
Now, it would seem astonishing enough to find bacteria that build their own compasses for navigation, but scientists had even more surprises coming as they learned about these three new species. They discovered that each of the species makes its own unique crystalline form of greigite. The bacteria seem to be able to build the crystals, molecule by molecule, at the normal temperatures and other conditions at which life exists. Scientists would like to know how these bacteria do this. Modern science can only make crystals under searing hot temperatures and other conditions that would kill anything alive.
These amazing abilities were not designed and built by mutations and accidents. They show that our Creator provides for the needs of all His creatures – even bacteria – and that He does so with unlimited creativity.
Prayer: Dear Lord, I thank You for Your greatest provision for me in Your holy, innocent suffering and death in my place for my sin. The wisdom of the plan of salvation confounds the enemy and amazes angels! Amen.
Author: Paul A. Bartz
Ref: “Crystal growers seek bacterial know-how.” Science News, v. 138, 1990. p. 382. Image: The magnetic field of a bar magnetic – Newton Henry Black (PD)
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