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Creation of the Universe


By Carman Bradley

Einstein once asked the question, ‘How much choice did God have in constructing the Universe?’  -  If the no-boundary proposal is correct, he had no freedom at all to choose initial conditions.  He would, of course, still have had the freedom to choose the laws that the Universe obeyed.  This, however, may not really have been all that much of a choice; there may well be only one, or a small number of complete unified theories…Even if there is only one possible unified theory, it is just a set of rules and equations.  What is it that breathes fire into the equations and makes a Universe for them to describe?...Why does the universe go to all the bother of existing? Is the unified theory so compelling that it brings about its own existence?[i]                       

                                                                                                                Stephen Hawking

A no-boundary model of the Universe ‘really underlies science because it is really the statement that the laws of science hold everywhere.’  However, if the Universe is self-contained, do we not need to explain how it got there in the first place. Stephen Hawking’s answer is that we do not – ‘It would just BE.[ii]

Moses said to God, ‘Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’’  ‘Then what shall I tell them?’  God said to Moses, ‘I am who I am! This is what you are to say to the Israelites: I AM has sent you.’…’This is my name forever, the name by which I am to be remembered from generation to generation.’ 

                                                                                                                                                                                 Exodus 3:13-15

In answer to the question, ‘Who do you think you are?’ Jesus replied: ‘If I glorify myself, my glory means nothing.  My Father, whom you claim as your God, is the one who glorifies me.  Though you do not know Him, I know Him.  If I said I did not, I would be a liar…I tell you the truth before Abraham was born, I am!

                                                                                                                                                                                      John 32-58 

Ironically, most “science-based” authors like Richard Dawkins, well grounded in the wisdom of physics, reductionism, evolution, and holding vehemently to an anti-Christian worldview, stop short of explaining how our universe came into existence.  How can the supposedly soundsteady-state model of the universe, which assumed away a moment of creation, would offer less of a cognitive flaw.  Like a belief of faith from the Apostle’s Creed to a Christian, the scientific community clings to their own founding tenet, proclaimed by Stephen Hawking - the Universe “would just BE.”  In layman’s terms this is the equivalent of saying “we do not know how things got started, but we’re not concerned.  Just accept the creation moment on scientific faith (but never religious faith!)

Is this a so-called “show-stopper”?  Yes!  Nowhere do evolutionists, cosmologists or hierarchical reductionists take their theories of mechanism, random chance, gradualism and the “blind” laws of physics back to the very birth of our universe.  Is the reality of our universe the first accidental chance event?  Who believes this?  The Big-Bang theory stops well short of answering the question of existence and certainly does not give evidence against God.  Getting something from nothing is still mathematically impossible and the current scientific model assumes the existence of “something” measuring light years across at time zero.  If the universe is self-contained, how did it get here?  There is a certain cognitive incoherence when pubic schools confidently proclaim to our children an assumed miraculous (chance?) birth of the universe, an equally marvelous (chance) start of life on earth and an extraordinary (chance) evolution to mankind from some tree-hugging apes, who through incremental (chance) decisions choose to forage for (chance) hard nuts in the nearby (chance) open savannas.  All of this the students are told without any chance of the deliberate hand of God.  Moreover, when you come to accept the teachings of this secular curriculum, argue many anti-Christian groups, remember the virgin birth and bodily resurrection of one named “Jesus Christ” are preposterous improbabilities.  We may not know absolutely how the universe was actually created or how life got started or now humankind came into being, but we know for sure there is no Creator or God.  Indeed, the absurdity of teaching all this evolutionary randomness to the preclusion of God, is magnified by the fact that our constitutions, charter of rights and freedoms, oaths of allegiance, national anthems, and in the U.S. the currency, all acknowledge the existence of God.  A lot of people are either blind or in denial when it comes to life’s purpose.

Michael White offers a modern definition of Darwin’s theory of evolution:

To Darwin, the individual organism is utterly meaningless, and Darwinian evolution shows that all things are solely at the mercy of two factors, the random shuffling and mutations of genes and the forces of natural selection.  In Darwin’s universe there is no guiding hand inside or outside the individual because there is no plan, no objective other than the drive for survival.  Nature is mindless, ungoverned, a free spirit, and because of this, Darwin tells us, life is cruel, violent, and utterly meaningless.  This then is a model for all of Nature.  Thomas Hobbes touched upon this truth some two centuries earlier when he said of the human condition (a tiny element of Nature’s grandeur) that it is ‘solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.[iii]

Either mankind is alone (but, for the chance encounter with another chance extraterrestrial in a chance overlap of the time-space continuum, as Carl Sagan theorizes); or there is a God who is our Creator and who wants to enter into a relationship with each of us.  The tug-of-war over such conflicting beliefs deserves far greater attention than most give in their lifetime.  More important for the purpose of this book, the paradigm you choose has a decisive impact on your view of GBLTQ culture and subsequently same-sex marriage.  To a great degree the orthodox Christian’s assertion of God’s “divine condemnation” of GBLTQ sex practices, is constrained within a context of the reader’s willingness to accept monotheism.  Prayerfully, this chapter and the entire book will help open your eyes to the Christian worldview.

[Note: One does not have to become a Christian or a devoted humanist to make an informed choice between the merits of one worldview over that of the other.  Jesus Christ, Margaret Sanger, and Charles Darwin all share a human birth; however, their divergent life purposes and proclamations for the “way” to happiness and peace give everyone two distinct paradigms of choice.]

Agnostics, like others who ignore God’s existence, have a public and political advantage in society.  Unlike “religious” people, they are not expected to censor their personal beliefs in such secular milieus as public schools, universities, courthouses and parliament.  This diminution of theism has been a humanist goal for many years.  At a meeting of the Metaphysical Society in 1869, Thomas Huxley invented the term agnostic as a play upon the Gnostics.  Here Huxley chose not just to claim “I do not know,” but he preferred the negative view “One cannot know.”  And it is this strictly universal negative judgment that permeates much of the scientific and academic communities.

Ironically, the evolution of science is now contributing more to the credibility of God amongst non-believers than to the Creator’s discredit.  Regrettably most scientists seem trapped within choices from only a non-Christian worldview: (1) agnostic – doubting God’s tangible existence, or (2) Gnostic – acknowledging an “unknowable deity.”  Most scientists are either ignoring God or trying to become God, but seldom are they submitting to God.  Humanism is the ultimate anti-Christian worldview, which includes agnosticism and Gnosticism.  Humanism adheres to the ancient idea that we are our own masters and that we in a sense become God through acquired and applied wisdom.   However, logic argues that we cannot be both creator and the created; hence the hard fought humanist anti-Christian theory of a meaningless random universe.  Lets us look first at the existence of our universe from both paradigms.

For Christians the model for creation of the universe, earth and humankind is found in Genesis 1 and 2.  We believe God created it all and did so in the sequence detailed in the Book of Genesis.

On the other hand, Steven Weinberg, describes the “Big Bang” theory in The First Three Minutes: A Modern View of the Origin of the Universe.[iv]  Prior to this theory, which is also called the “standard model,” many scientists of cosmology, had hitched their beliefs to the notion (theory) that the universe was infinite and had for all intents and purposes existed much as seen for an eternity.  In 1917, a year after the completion of his general theory of relativity, Einstein tried to find a solution of his equations that would describe the space-time geometry of the whole universe.  Einstein looked for a solution that would be homogeneous, isotropic, and truly static.  However, no solution could be found.  Writes Weinberg:

Einstein was forced to mutilate his equations by introducing a term, the so-called cosmological constant, which greatly marred the elegance of the original theory.[v] 

By the late 1940s, a theory called the “steady-state model,” was proposed by Herman Bondi, Thomas Gold, and Fred Hoyle.  With a slightly different formulation, they proposed that the universe has always been just about as it is now.  As it expands, new matter is continually created to fill up the gaps between galaxies.[vi]  Here, the problem of the early universe is banished; there simply was no early universe.  Today, according to Weinberg, the prevailing theory is the standard model, which can be described as follows:

In the beginning there was an explosion.  Not an explosion like those similar on earth, starting from a definite center and spreading out to engulf more and more of the circumambient air, but an explosion which occurred simultaneously everywhere, filling all space from the beginning, with every particle of matter rushing apart from every other particle.  ‘All space’ in this context may mean either all of an infinite universe, or all of a finite universe which curves back on itself like the surface of a sphere.  Neither possibility is easy to comprehend, but this will not get in our way; it matters hardly at all in the early universe whether space is finite or infinite.

At about one-hundredth of a second, the earliest time about which we can speak with any confidence, the temperature of the universe was about a hundred thousand (10¹¹) degrees Centigrade.  This is much hotter than in the center of even the hottest star, so hot, in fact, that none of the components of ordinary matter, molecules, or atoms, or even the nuclei of atoms, could have held together.  Instead, the matter rushing apart in this explosion consisted of various types of so-called elementary particles, which are the subject of modern high-energy nuclear physics.[vii]

Says Weinberg:

The standard model sketched above is not the most satisfying theory imaginable of the origin of the universe.…there is embarrassing vagueness about the very beginning, the first hundredth of a second or so.  Also, there is the unwelcome necessity of fixing initial conditions, especially the initial thousand-million-to-one ratio of photons to nuclear particles.  We would prefer a greater sense of logical inevitability in the theory.[viii]

Can we really be sure of the standard model?  Will new discoveries overthrow it…or even revive the steady-state model?  Perhaps.  I cannot deny a feeling of unreality in writing about the first three minutes as if we really know what we are talking about.[ix]

Using the Hubble constant of 15 kilometers per second per million light years, the age of the universe must be less than 20,000 million years.[x]  Previously (1930-40), the Hubble constant was believed to be 170 kilometers per second per million light years, which predicted a universe of 2,000 million years or less.  But this calculation conflicted with radioactivity studies by Lord Rutherford, which indicated the earth was much older; it is now thought to be about 4,600 million years old.  Says Weinberg:

It may be that the removal of the age paradox by the tenfold expansion of the extragalatic distance scale in the 1950s was the essential precondition for the emergence of the big bang cosmology as a standard theory.[xi]

The strongest support for the “Big Bang” cosmology comes from the confirmation that the universe is expanding and the measurement of the cosmic microwave radiation background discovered in 1965.[xii]  Weinberg explains in more detail the early start:

Eventually, as we look farther and farther back into the history of the universe, we come to a time when the temperature was so high that collisions of photons with each other could produce material particles out of pure energy….Therefore, in order to follow the course of events at really early times, we are going to need to know how hot the universe had to be to produce large numbers of material particles out of the energy of radiation, and how many particles were thus produced.[xiii]

...The temperature of the universe is 100,000 million degrees Kelvin (10¹¹ ºK).  The universe is simpler and easier to describe than it ever will be again.  It is filled with an undifferentiated soup of matter and radiation.[xiv]

It is natural to ask how large the universe was at the very early times.  Unfortunately we do not know, and we are not even sure that this question has meaning….the universe may well be infinite now, in which case it was infinite at the time of the first frame, and always was infinite.  On the other hand, it is possible that the universe now has a finite circumference, sometimes estimated to be about 125 thousand million light years….this gives a first-frame circumference of about four light years.  None of the details of the story of cosmic evolution in the first few minutes will depend on whether the circumference of the universe was infinite or only a few light years.[xv]

The Law of Energy Conservation is an empirical law of science, also known as the First Law of Thermodynamics, states that while energy can be converted from one form to another, it can neither be created nor annihilated.  According to Isaac Asimov:

It is considered the most powerful and most fundamental generalization about the universe that scientists have ever been able to make.[xvi]

Both scientists and Christians have grounded their worldview in specific facts, beliefs and faith.  Secularists have no difficulty believing in the “miraculous” creation of the universe, i.e. ignoring the dictates of the First Law of Thermodynamics.   Either something came from nothing or for a very tiny instant at the start of the standard model, there was an egg 3-5 light years in circumference.  Modern physics now confirms what Christians have known by faith all along.  There was a miraculous creation moment.

Einstein supplied the relationship between matter and energy[xvii] and later the Heisenberg uncertainty principle supplied a possible relation between energy and time.  Scientists are now quite willing to concede that a moment of creation was possible.  Other evidence even dictates the necessity of a creation.  The famous Second Law of Thermodynamics (Boltzmann/Kelvin) establishes that the universe must not have always existed or it would have run down to dead stop before now.[xviii]  Hubble’s correlation between red shifts and distances to stars, and the consequent rate of expansion for the universe, even indicates a rough estimate for the time of its creation.[xix]

Atheists will attempt to present the moment of creation as if it were a completely “random accident” – one which, by “lucky coincidence,” started a chain reaction of cause and effect that ultimately fell together into the Sistine Chapel and Marilyn Monroe among other wonders.  Those who are uncomfortable with a moment of creation (and hence a Creator) have proposed the hypothesis that the universe goes through endless cycles of “Big Bang” followed by “Big Crunch” where it collapses again only to be re-exploded in a subsequent “Big Bang.”  Even if this hypothesis proves to be true, it does not eliminate the need for a moment of creation.[xx]

Copyright © 2008 StandForGod.Org

[i] Stephen W. Hawking, A Brief History of Time: From the Big Bang to Black Holes (New York: Bantam Books, 1988), p.174.

[ii] Michael White and John Gribbon, Stephen Hawking (London: Penguin, 1992), p.168.  Taken from A Brief History of Time.

[iii] Michael White, Acid Tongues and Tranquil Dreamers (New York; William Morrow, 2001), pp. 130 and 131.

[iv] Steven Weinberg, The First Three Minutes: A Modern View of the Origin of the Universe, 2nd ed. (New York: Basic Books, 1988).

[v] Ibid., p.32.

[vi] Ibid., p.8.

[vii] Ibid., p.5.

[viii] Ibid., p.8.

[ix] Ibid., p.9.

[x]Ibid., p.28.

[xi] Ibid., p.30.

[xii] Ibid., p.180.

[xiii] Ibid., p.79.

[xiv] Ibid., p.102.

[xv] Ibid., pp.105 and 106.

[xvi] Isaac Asimov, “In the Game of Energy and Thermodynamics You Can’t Even Break Even,” Journal of Smithsonian Institute (June 1970): p.6.  As quoted in Fred Heeren, Show Me God, revised edition, (Wheeling, Illinois: Day Star, 1997), pp.128 and 129.  Founf in Hanegraaf, p.83.

[xvii] Don Stoner, A New Look at an Old Earth (Paramount, California: Schroeder, 1992), p.106.  Although discovery of the equivalence between matter and energy (E = mc2) is universally attributed to Albert Einstein, not all sources agree.  See Fred Hoyle and Chandra Wickramasinghe, C. Evolution from Space (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1981), p.10.

[xviii] Francis Weston Sears, Mechanics, Heat, and Sound (Reading Massachusetts: Addison-Wesley, 1950), p.10.  Cited in Stoner, p.106.

[xix] Robert Jastrow, C., God and the Astronomers (New York: W.W. Norton and Company, 1978), p.47.  Hubble calculated that the “Big Bang,” must have occurred about two billion years ago.  Later refinements corrected this estimate to some fifteen billion years. Cited in Stoner, p.106.

[xx] See Weinberg, First Three Minutes, pp.153 and 154.  Cited in Stoner, p.108.