Today we will present the second installment of our series on "Does God Exist? How to Answer a Skeptic." (To see Part 1, click here.)
As shown in Part 1, science is actually based on creation.
Comment: The higher power or "God" had some level of consciousness.
Comment: Consciousness is transferred to the "creations" at will.
YOM: No. God did not “transfer” His consciousness to creation. He created. And to some of the things God created He gave the ability to think and be self-aware. We are recipients of a tiny fraction of what God knows.
Comment: Level of conscious beings (Least to Greatest)
- Stone (or earth)
- Complex Animals (Primates, Dolphins, etc.)
Everything that exists has some level of consciousness.
YOM: That is an arbitrary and unproved conjecture. There is no evidence that stones or plants have any degree of consciousness whatsoever.
Comment: Since we know from the Law of Conservation of Energy that matter cannot be created or destroyed but only altered, nothing could ever just magically appear.
YOM: The law of conservation of mass and energy is justified only by that fact that (1) God is no longer creating (Genesis 2:3), and (2) God upholds what He has made (Hebrews 1:3). But this only applies after creation. The conservation laws were not in effect until God was finished. God did indeed speak new material into existence from nothing. The worlds were not made from previous matter (Hebrews 11:3)
Comment: Scriptures actually say that "god" does not just make everything appear instantaneously.
YOM: No. At least some of what was created during the creation week was indeed made instantly (Psalm 33:9). The “and it was so” which is often stated after God speaks something into existence implies that it happened right away.
Commonly Accepted Beliefs 1: Advances in molecular biology have revealed vast amounts of information encoded in each and every living cell, and molecular biologists have discovered thousands upon thousands of exquisitely designed machines at the molecular level. Information requires intelligence and design requires a designer.
Commonly Accepted Beliefs 2: Biochemists and mathematicians have calculated the odds against life arising from non-life naturally via unintelligent processes. The odds are astronomical. In fact, scientists aren't even sure if life could have evolved naturally via unintelligent processes.
YOM: True. However, many scientists continue to believe in evolution/old earth anyway – despite such lines of evidence. This shows that they are driven by a worldview, not evidence.
Commonly Accepted Beliefs 3: Philosophers agree that a transcendent Law Giver is the only plausible explanation for an objective moral standard. So, ask yourself, if you believe in right and wrong and then ask yourself why – Who gave you your conscience? Why does it exist?
YOM: Well, not all philosophers would agree, but I do agree that morality requires a transcendent God. I would go even further though, and point out that morality requires the God of the Bible. The biblical God has revealed Himself to man, does not change, and holds man accountable. Thus we have a good reason to obey God’s non-changing moral principles.
Question: What is the proof of an Old Earth?
YOM: There is none. The tools of science operate in the present. They allow us to understand how the universe works today. But they cannot be applied to the past because it is gone. The only way we can know with any degree of certainty about past events is from recorded history. Think about it: you can’t learn very much about George Washington from scientific experiments in a laboratory. Instead, you’d have to consult a history book. Likewise, to know the age of the earth, we would need a history book that records the earth’s origin. Fortunately, we have one: the Bible. But the Bible clearly indicates an age of thousands of years – not millions or billions.
Question: Is there any evidence for the Big Bang Theory?
YOM: There really isn't any. The Big Bang Theory is nothing more than a conjecture based on an unwarranted extrapolation of the arbitrary assumptions of naturalism and uniformitarianism. If you drop those assumptions, there is absolutely no reason to believe in a big bang.
Comment: First of all, we are reasonably certain that the universe had a beginning.
YOM: The latest versions of the Big Bang Theory tend to promote the idea that only our universe had a beginning when it sprang from a previous universe, and that there are many universes in an eternal multiverse. However, Scripture does teach that the universe had a beginning.
Comment: Second, galaxies appear to be moving away from us at speeds proportional to their distance. This is called "Hubble's Law," named after Edwin Hubble (1889-1953) who discovered this phenomenon in 1929. This observation supports the expansion of the universe and suggests that the universe was once compacted.
YOM: Expansion just means that the universe is larger today than it was yesterday. It would be an unreasonable extrapolation to believe that it was ever infinitely small. There is no evidence to suggest that.
Comment: Third, if the universe was initially very, very hot as the Big Bang suggests, we should be able to find some remnant of this heat. In 1965, Radio astronomers Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson discovered a 2.725 degree Kelvin (-454.765 degree Fahrenheit, -270.425 degree Celsius) Cosmic Microwave Background radiation (CMB) which pervades the observable universe. This is thought to be the remnant which scientists were looking for. Penzias and Wilson shared in the 1978 Nobel Prize for Physics for their discovery.
YOM: That’s the fallacy of affirming the consequent. The CMB simply indicates that the universe has an average temperature. Almost any model of origins would expect that (even modern versions of the Steady State). The speculation that the CMB was caused by a Big Bang is an arbitrary conjecture. It has no logical or scientific support.
Comment: Finally, the abundance of the "light elements" Hydrogen and Helium found in the observable universe are thought to support the Big Bang model of origins.
YOM: The Big Bang Theory has been retrofitted to accommodate the abundances of the light elements. They were not a prediction. Moreover, the Big Bang does not account for the other 90 or so naturally occurring elements. It’s a bit like being handed the answer key to a test and still failing.
Question: God exists in a dimension outside our own and thus he cannot enter his creation.
YOM: No. God does not exist “in a dimension.” He is beyond all dimensions, having created all dimensions. He is transcendent. Moreover, God can indeed enter His creation. In fact, He has done so on a number of occasions. The incarnation of Jesus is a great example of this.
What is your response to skeptics when they bring up the subject of the Big Bang Theory? What verses from the Bible have you used to defend your position?
I think Romans 1 is a good place to start. Mankind is without excuse when they reject the natural revelation God has given them.
So what if I cannot explain how things in creation work, Luke 1:37 says" For with God nothing shall be impossible". The God of the impossible made it all and "by him all things consist".( Col.1:17)
O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out.
For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor?
Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again?
For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen. Romans 11:33-36
The key point is in the question YOM asked," What Bible verses have you used..." Papers and books written by creationist scientist are very helpful and useful, (I use them myself), but nothing beats the Word of God, for "So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God". Romans 10:17
John S says:
A common support for Old age is the light from distant stars and galaxies. Due to it's distance it had to take millions/billions of years just for the light to travel to earth, therefore the universe must be billions of years old otherwise we wouldn't be able to see the stars from earth.
I have always thought, since the heavenly bodies were put there for man to see per the Bible, that God made them immediately visible from earth. No problem for God. However this is labeled 'God of the gaps' and laughed off as anti-sciece. Recently I have read theories by 2 astronomers, Dr. Russell Humphries and Dr. Jason Lisle, (that are similar but I believe somewhat different) that explain a logical, sceintific way the light from stars could be visible without needing billions of years. This is great, however it is confusing to most folks (including me!) and it seems to go against basic and easily understandable facts about the speed of light and the distance of stars.
So, how would you answer this 'distance of the stars' question?
I point out that God predicted that the universe is constantly stretching farther out. There are 10 Old Testament references to God "stretching the heavens."
The majority state that this action is ongoing:
Job 9:8; Psalm 104:2; Isaiah 40:22; Isaiah 42:5; Isaiah 44:24; Isaiah 51:13; Zechariah 12:1
The rest say that it is past tense:
Isaiah 45:12; Jeremiah 10:12; Jeremiah 51:15
This all fits beautifully with the rapid expansion we see from the early universe and the continued movement we see today.
How can we see distant stars? This is a good question and difficult. If we read Genesis 1:14-19, the 4th Day of Creation Week, we are not told about the nature of light, its velocity, or that red giants or white dwarfs were created much less other bodies in our solar system like Uranus or Neptune. We are told however, that God created all of the heavenly bodies or host, e.g. Genesis 2:1-3.
Earlier this year the report 'Chasing Light Speed', Sky & Telescope 123(2):34-39, 2012 (February issue) covered the question concerning the speed of light. My observation - As the report stated, NASA Voyager 2 probe, the radio signals from Neptune took more than 4 hours to reach Earth. This is similar to Ole Romer's observations of light-travel-time during Io eclipses at Jupiter. In my opinion there was nothing in this report that conclusively demonstrated c was a finite velocity and not for example decaying in value or that creationist Jason Lisle model for explaining remote light-travel-time was wrong. We do not have a measurement of the velocity of light provided in Genesis 1:3 for example. Starlight-travel-time interpretations of millions and billions of years arise from present measurements for c. Extrapolating from the early efforts of Romer in 1671 through the OPERA experiment in September 2011, does not prove that remote starlight took billions of years to reach Earth. However the problem for a young universe cosmology remains in the creationists community I feel. Russ Humphreys approach is time dilation. The earth on the 4th Day of Creation Week experiences 24 hours but the universe as it is expanding can experience billions of years of time dilation, thus stars emitted light that reached earth by the end of the 4th Day of Creation Week, yet the stars experienced a much longer lapse of time during the Creation Week. For me this approach is appealing in astronomy but has problems I feel. We could appeal to seeing remote starlight immediately. This is similar to instantaneous action at a distant force, something that Einstein in Relativity rejected. We should remember the big bang model has a light-travel-time problem too in explaining the smoothness of the cosmic microwave background. Some secular scientists even look to a variable speed of light (VSL) much faster than measurements for c today to explain the horizon problem in the big bang as it is called. Ref - Magueijo, J., Plan B for the Cosmos, Scientific American 284(1):58-59, 2001. So we recognize that young earth creationists have a problem in explaining seeing remote starlight, so do evolutionists using the big bang model. Inflation or VSL have been invented to get around the light-travel-time problem in the big bang.