New evidence now strongly suggests that there was a beginning to our universe. CNN.com recently published an article on a remarkable discovery that rocked the world of science and faith, offering strong support for biblical beliefs. The new discovery of traces of gravity waves affirms scientific concepts in the fields of cosmology, general relativity, and particle physics.
In the article, Leslie Wickman wrote: “The prevalent theory of cosmic origins prior to the Big Bang theory was the “Steady State,” which argued that the universe has always existed, without a beginning that necessitated a cause. If the universe did indeed have a beginning, by the simple logic of cause and effect, there had to be an agent – separate and apart from the effect – that caused it.
That sounds a lot like Genesis 1:1 to me: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the Earth.” So this latest discovery is good news for us believers, as it adds scientific support to the idea that the universe was caused – or created – by something or someone outside it and not dependent on it…atheist-turned-agnostic astronomer Fred Hoyle… saw the Big Bang not as a chaotic explosion, but rather a very highly ordered event – one that could not have occurred by random chance.”
Bruce Gordon, associate professor of the history and philosophy of science at Houston Baptist University was quoted by Bpnews.net: “The recent purported detection of gravitational waves serves as further confirmation of Einstein’s theory of general relativity and of the nature of the Big Bang itself.”
Bpnews.net further reported that Scientists have argued for decades that the Big Bang produced gravitational waves which polarized electromagnetic radiation throughout the universe in a specific way. A telescope at the South Pole known as BICEP2 detected that type of polarization for the first time, researchers of the BICEP2 consortium announced March 17.
According to these scientists, the discovery also provides evidence for “inflationary cosmology” or “inflation” — the idea that the universe expanded faster than the speed of light during the first trillionths of a second following the Big Bang. If the universe initially expanded merely at the speed of light — the highest velocity at which any cause can have an effect in space-time — it could not have reached its present size, according to Big Bang proponents. This argument sounds consistent with the Genesis account, where God creates the universe in Genesis 1:1 and only later says “Let there be light” in Genesis 1:3.
Physicist Alan Guth proposed inflation in 1980 in an attempt to explain the universe’s fine tuning and uniformity without reference to a supernatural creator. If all matter was crunched together before the Big Bang, Guth said, its initial proximity should result in some degree of uniformity as it expands, explaining the consistency of scientific laws without a creator. But Gordon counters this argument by saying that cosmic inflation requires so much fine-tuning itself that the theory unwittingly increases the likelihood of the universe’s creation by an intelligent designer.
Interestingly, both Creationists and Big Bang proponents are therefore claiming that the discovery of these gravitational waves validate or prove their respective divergent viewpoints. Bpnews.net for example states that, according to Southern Baptist scientists: “The discovery of gravitational waves – touted as evidence of the Big Bang theory of the universe’s origin – serves as powerful evidence that the world was created by an intelligent designer rather than random impersonal forces.”
In essence that God caused what creationist opponents call the “big bang” at the point of time pinpointed as “the beginning” when God was in the process of initially creating the universe: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the Earth (Genesis 1:1).”
On the other hand, Big Bang proponents lean on the argument that proof of the Big Bang is validated by the discovery of the gravitational waves, but they infer that the Big bang happened outside of any deliberate factor or person such as a Creator God. Which in turn still leaves them at pains to explain how the constituent components (original matter) of the bang came to exist at all, if there was nothing to cause or create them in the first place.
ColdCaseChristianity.com explains it this way: The Cosmological Argument for God’s existence (grounded in the Principle of Causality) makes a persuasive case:
(1) The Universe Began to Exist (Confirmed by the scientific evidence);
(2) Anything That Has a Beginning Must Be Caused By Something Else (Affirmed by the Principal of Causality);
(3) Therefore, the Universe Must Have a Cause (Inferred from the Principal of Causality);
(4) The First Cause Must Be Eternal and Uncaused (Declared by definition);
(5) The Cause is God (Offered as the most reasonable uncaused first cause).
The last two of these five points are the ones that would break the hearts of many Big Bang proponents.
Robert Jastrow, an astrophysicist who established NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies in 1961, described the evidence and made the case for a finite universe with a beginning in his book, God and the Astronomers with four simple and easy-to-remember-evidences:
The Second Law of Thermodynamics: This law (also known as the Law of Increased Entropy) recognizes the following: While the quantity of energy within a closed, isolated system (like the Universe) remains the same, the amount of usable energy deteriorates gradually over time. If the universe had no beginning and was infinitely old, why would there be any usable energy still available to us? The fact there is still usable energy in the universe points to a beginning in which the universe was tightly wound, and causes us to look for the cause responsible for such winding.
The Expansion of the Universe: Over the years, a number of scientists have calculated or observed the expansion of the universe. In 1915, by applying relativity to Newtonian physics, Einstein derived the equations of general relativity which describe the relationships between gravity, the speed of light, mass, and other factors in regard to the universe as a whole. His work was consistent with an expanding universe. Alexander Friedman, a Russian mathematician working in the 1920’s with Einstein’s theories, used the mathematics to prove the universe is expanding. His work was being paralleled at the time by astronomers in Belgium who independently came to the same conclusion.
The Radiation Echo: In 1964, two American physicists and radio astronomers, Arno Allan Penzias and Robert Woodrow Wilson, happened upon an important discovery. They were unable to eliminate the radio signal “noise” from their large antenna at the Bell Telephone Laboratories in New Jersey, regardless of where in the universe they tried to point their instrument. Investigations and numerous additional experiments and observations proved that they were detecting residual “background radiation” caused when the universe first came into being at a fixed point in the past.
The Philosophy of Infinite Regression: If the universe existed from all eternity, then time would also have existed from all eternity. There would be no “beginning of time”. But if this were true, we could never arrive at today. If you don’t have an initial and definite place from which to begin time, you can’t measure your way up to the present moment.
Or as world renowned British physicist/ scientist Stephen Hawking, puts it in his book A Brief History of Time: “Many people do not like the idea that time has a beginning, probably because it smacks of divine intervention.”
And as everyone will eventually get to find out sooner or later:
For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else (Isaiah 45:18).