A One-Time Beginning
The opening words of the Bible are, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”(8) However, since Aristotle, most scientists believed that matter and energy had always existed. Many scientists accused the Bible of being out of date and unscientific.
The Bible also contradicted scientific opinion which assumed time and space had always existed, by stating that time and space were created along with energy and matter. It says,
The whole scheme of time and space was created by God’s command—the world which we can see has come into being through principles which are invisible.(9)
Although leading scientists were convinced that everything, including time and space, had always existed, Einstein’s theory of relativity, pointed to a beginning of the universe. Unwilling to accept a beginning, Einstein, who many call the greatest scientist of all time, “fudged” his own equations to make it appear the universe had always existed.
But a decade later, astronomer Edwin Hubble discovered the universe is expanding. Rewinding the tape, he realized everything began in a massive cosmic creation event. Einstein admitted his error, calling it, “the biggest blunder of my life.”(10)
The highly regarded astronomer Fred Hoyle was also reluctant to admit the universe had a beginning. He sarcastically labeled the enormous creation event leading to our universe, “the big bang,” and the name caught on. Since then, scientists have referred to creation as the big bang.
In metaphorical terms, the Bible states that God “stretched out the heavens like a tent.”(11) After Hubble’s discovery, scientists acknowledged that our universe actually does “stretch out” from an infinitely tiny point (singularity).
Once the evidence for a one-time beginning was confirmed, many scientists recognized the obvious parallel between the Bible and science.
Astrophysicist George Smoot—the Nobel Prize–winning scientist in charge of the COBE experiment that confirmed the creation of the universe—admits to the parallel with the Bible. Although an agnostic, Smoot remarks,
There is no doubt that a parallel exists between the big bang as an event and the Christian notion of creation from nothing.(12)
Finely Tuned for Life
As if a one-time beginning of the universe weren’t enough of a pill for skeptics to swallow, even more shocking was the fact that dozens of laws and conditions needed to be finely tuned for life, especially human life.
For example, if the force of gravity were altered by an infinitesimal 0.00000000000000000000000000000000000001 percent, neither Earth nor our Sun would exist—and you would not be reading this.(13)
Altogether, over 100 essential conditions of our universe, galaxy, solar system, and planet require precise fine-tuning—or we wouldn’t be here.(14) Smoot compares the fine-tuning for life to the precision required for an archer on Earth to hit a bull’s-eye on Pluto, four billion miles away.
So what are scientists saying about such incredible fine-tuning? Fred Hoyle later admitted,
A common sense interpretation of the facts suggests that a superintellect has monkeyed with physics, as well as chemistry and biology….The numbers one calculates from the facts seem to me so overwhelming as to put this conclusion almost beyond question.(15)
Cosmologist Edward Harrison calls fine-tuning “prima facie evidence” of God’s existence.
Here is the cosmological proof of the existence of God.… The fine-tuning of the universe provides prima facie evidence of deistic design. Many scientists when they admit their views, incline toward…the design argument.(16)
However, scientists who don’t believe in God seek natural, rather than theological, answers for the remarkable fine-tuning of our universe.
Stephen Hawking, an atheist, admits that “these numbers seem to have been very finely adjusted to make possible the development of life.”(17) Hawking, has also admitted, “There must be religious overtones. But I think most scientists prefer to shy away from the religious side of it.”
In his effort to explain the fine-tuning apart from a Creator, Hawking argues that if an infinite number of universes exist (multiverse), one of them would have been lucky enough to have just the right conditions for life. Hawking supposes that we are that “lucky” universe.
But since no scientific evidence exists for Hawking’s multiverse hypothesis, many scientists reject it as too speculative. British astrophysicist Paul Davies, an agnostic, writes, “Such a belief must rest on faith rather than observation.”(19)
Astronomer, Robert Jastrow, speaks for many scientists who regard the beginning and fine-tuning of our universe as evidence for divine creation.
For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountains of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak; as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries.(20)
(For more on science and the Bible see http://y-jesus.com/more/scc-science-christianity-compatible/ and www.y-origins.com.)