Friday, October 12, 2007

Creation Cosmology - "God did it" is lookin' good!


Today's blurb is motivated by two recent conversations.

In one, a bright PhD Intel engineer who has become a Christian told me he thought creationists resort to a "God of the gaps" theology. That is, whenever something is not understood, creationists merely say "Well, God did it so we don't have to look for a reason or a mechanism." I did not reply to him since I did not have time to engage and was not sure if he wished to engage in any discussion. He seemed pretty sure. But I hope for a chance one day to tell him that exactly the opposite is true. The overwhelming majority of the founders of modern science were believers in God who were motivated in their work to "think God's thoughts after Him" to the glory of God. Someday I hope for that conversation, since he seems to me to be a really good guy.

The second conversation was a few weeks ago with a young woman beginning her graduate study in physics in a US university. On a group hike to the Cascade mountains just after school began, she told me she had studied astronomy and cosmology in her home country. I asked her if she understood the boundary conditions used in the Big Bang theory and she did not quite seem to understand that the BB BC's are axiomatic, that is, unprovable. When I asked her what she learned in her study, she mentioned a few things including "dark matter." When I asked her if she was sure dark matter existed, she looked at me like I had just fallen off a turnip truck. She was absolutely sure dark matter existed because "even though you can not see it, you can see its gravitational effect."


Now on to the creationist cosmology.

I had the great privilege to attend the 3rd International Conference on Creationism in Pittsburgh, PA, in 1994. I was quite stunned by two papers given by Dr. Russ Humphreys providing a creationist cosmology. The first paper was a thorough look at scripture (the Bible) to see what the Bible's creation account may suggest for cosmology. I think you can find that stuff in his book "Starlight and Time." His conclusion? Scripture seems to strongly suggest that the universe is bounded, and it is likely the earth is at the approximate center of the universe (note - this is NOT a geocentric solar system notion). This is exactly contrary to the commonly used (axiomatic) boundary conditiions of "Big Bang" cosmologies, which assume the universe is unbounded and that there is no special place in the universe, hence no center. Humphrey's second paper detailed a cosmology solving the General Relativity equations using his Biblically-derived boundary conditions, and came up with a cosmlogy which can perhaps reconcile Bible time scales (thousands of years) with astronomical observations (which suggest millions and billions of years under the "Big Bang" hypothesis). The key? A phenomenon called "gravitational time dilation." In General Relativity, large nearby mass will cause clocks to run at different rates due to the effect of gravitation. The Big Bang assumptions (no special place in space => relative homogeneity of matter distributed in space) provide no such major effect for clocks.

Oh, and one more thing. Humphreys pointed out that there are many (I think he said 16, I have found about that many but not tried to count them) scriptures that say that God "stretched out the heavens." Thus, scripture has been saying for at least 2700 years that the universe is expanding or has expanded. Modern physics and astronomy have come to this concludion only in the last 100 years.

Here is one Bible quote among many. And the great thing about it is that God is speaking about the coming of Christ 700 years later. In doing so, He first identifies Himself by the might of His creative acts (an introductory curriculum vitae so to speak), not only in the stretching of the heavens, but in the spreading of the earth (plate tectonics) as well:

"This is what God Jehovah says - He who created the heavens and stretched them out, who spread out the earth and all that comes out of it, who gives breath to its people, and life to those who walk on it: 'I, Jehovah, have called you in righteousness; I will take hold of your hand. I will keep you and will make you to be a covenant for the people and a light for the Gentiles, to open eyes that are blind, to free captives from prison and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness. I am Jehovah; that is My name! I will not give my glory to another or my praise to idols. See, the former things have taken place, and new things I declare; before they spring into being I announce them to you.' " Isaiah 42:5-9.

Is that cool or what? God first identified his past work (creation and stretching of the heavens plus spreading of the continents) in order to validate the new covenant that will come later in Jesus to free both Jews and non-Jews from spiritual darkness and bondage.

God has identified Himself clearly. Wise men will take heed.

STUFF WE SEE NOW: "God did it" is looking better all the time.

Here are some links with some excerpts. Enjoy.

(1) Anomalies in the Pioneer spacecraft trajectory are explained by creationist cosmology but not by Big Bang:

"A broad class of creationist cosmologies offer an explanation for the ‘Pioneer effect’, an apparent small Sunward anomalous acceleration of the Pioneer 10 and 11 spacecraft. …Thus the Pioneer effect supports the essentials of several creationist cosmologies: a centre of mass, expansion of space and recent time dilation. Big bang theorists, whose cosmology does not have a centre of mass, cannot use this explanation. As yet, they have no alternative theory upon which they agree."

(2) Quantized redshifts are strong evidence that the earth is indeed somewhere near the center of the universe (yes, we have a center and we are there):

"Over the last few decades, new evidence has surfaced that restores man to a central place in God’s universe. Astronomers have confirmed that numerical values of galaxy redshifts are ‘quantized’, tending to fall into distinct groups. According to Hubble’s law, redshifts are proportional to the distances of the galaxies from us. Then it would be the distances themselves that fall into groups. That would mean the galaxies tend to be grouped into (conceptual) spherical shells concentric around our home galaxy, the Milky Way. The shells turn out to be on the order of a million light years apart. The groups of redshifts would be distinct from each other only if our viewing location is less than a million light years from the centre. The odds for the Earth having such a unique position in the cosmos by accident are less than one in a trillion. Since big bang theorists presuppose the cosmos has naturalistic origins and cannot have a unique centre, they have sought other explanations, without notable success so far. Thus, redshift quantization is evidence (1) against the big bang theory, and (2) for a galactocentric cosmology, such as one by Robert Gentry or the one in my book, Starlight and Time."

(3) A geocentric cosmology (supported by item 2 above) may suggest no need for dark matter:

"Using the centro-symmetric cosmology of Moshe Carmeli, it is shown that there is no need to assume the existence of dark matter to explain dynamics of galaxies in the cosmos. Further, it is shown that in this cosmology the cosmological constant or dark energy is a property of space-time. This can be interpreted in a creationist cosmology as the power of the Lord giving a boost to the expansion of the fabric of space as He stretched it out. He is the unseen force in the universe. By the correct choice of field equations, the motions of the galaxies are described without the need to resort to exotic particles. This description fits a finite galactocentric universe, and is consistent with a creationist cosmology."

So, does all this stuff mean that all the questions are answered? No, far from it. But when folks dream up unobserved stuff like "dark matter" and the Oort Cloud (supposed source of comets), they might hit it right every now and then, but it is really skating on thin ice.

From what I know of the unquestioned integrity of the Bible, the creationist scientists have a great shot at getting it right by starting at the right place: the historical report of creation provided by God Himself in Genesis in the Bible.

Respectfully submitted,



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