When I logged on here tonight, I saw a good article called “How Hubble Killed God.” As you might have imagined, this article details how some of the data from the Hubble telescope disproves the notion that the earth is only about 6000 years old. You really should read it, since he explains his position much better than I ever could, but to give you the gist of it, his argument centers around the distance of the images the telescope has captured.
“Light speed, Mr Sulu…”
I’m sure most of you are familiar with the term “light-year,” but aside from old Star Trek episodes, do you know what it means? It’s pretty self-explanatory. A “light-year” is the distance that light is able to travel in a year. Light does not illuminate an object immediately. For instance, if you shine a flashlight at your wall, there’s a slight delay from the time you flip the switch to the point that you’re able to make shadow puppets (of course, you’ll never notice this delay). The average distance between the earth and the sun is 92,900,000 miles, and it takes light about 8 minutes to travel that distance. So when you see the sun finally sink below the horizon, it actually passed that point 8 minutes earlier. Pretty trippy, huh?
Stu (the blogger that posted this article) points out that the Hubble telescope has captured images from galaxies that are about 13 billion light-years away! Therefore, he concludes that the earth can’t be a measly 6000-ish years old (as far as the question of whether or not there’s a God, he’s pretty ambivalent; just thought the title was catchy). Well, I’d like to make a couple of observations.
The Chicken, or the Egg?
First of all, if you look at the creation account in Genesis, there are several interesting things that pop out at you. For one, creating this complex universe didn’t seem to be too difficult for God – he merely spoke it all into existence. Just as interesting is the fact that everything was fully formed. He didn’t make Adam and Eve into infants, they were adults. The four rivers mentioned in Genesis didn’t start out as tiny streams, they were rivers. Trees were trees, not saplings, etc.
So when God made the sun, I don’t believe he had to wait 8 minutes for its light to reach the earth. When God made stars (all of the stars, planets, etc were made on the 4th day, by the way), I don’t think he had to wait light-years before they showed up. God made everything as if it had already been here, so why couldn’t he have made something with its light already shining as far away as he wanted? After all, if he can speak things into existence, do you really think he’s going to be bound by the same rules of physics he created? Now, Stu would probably say that that’s a convenient copout. And since God created us all with a free will, Stu’s entitled to that opinion. But before you agree with him, check out the next section.
The coolest thing about all of this is that the Bible gives some actual proofs for its veracity. Archaeology has backed up many of the Bible’s claims, and history has as well. But sticking to the realm of science, there are some passages that mention things that weren’t common knowledge until relatively recently.
10 He drew a circular horizon on the face of the waters,
At the boundary of light and darkness – Job 26:10
22 It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, – Isaiah 40:22
These two passages show that the earth was round long before anyone knew that, and definitely long before many people maintained that it was a possibility.
7 He stretches out the north over empty space;
He hangs the earth on nothing. – Job 26:7
We know now that the earth hangs in empty space, supported only by gravity (which is invisible). There were countless theories back then about how the earth was supported. Very few would have believed that it was hanging in empty space, yet that’s what the Bible teaches.
16 “Have you entered the springs of the sea?
Or have you walked in search of the depths? – Job 38:16
People didn’t know there were “springs in the sea” until the last few centuries.
Bottom line: there are several things that science has only proven in the past few centuries that were written well before Christ’s birth. People who choose to follow God and the teachings in the Bible must do it based on faith. But it doesn’t have to be blind faith.
One Last Point
In my very first real blog post, I talked about the mystery God has revealed to us. This final point I want to make goes along with that first post very well. We need to be careful when we put too much stock in science or our own understanding. Plenty of people have made severe blunders in the name of science. Marie Curie helped discover radium, which has been very useful. However, she made the mistake of carrying it around with her a good bit too, and that stuff will make you glow in the dark…
The Bible comes right out and warns us several times about blinding ourselves with our own wisdom. Several of those passages are quoted in my first post. One of the most direct passages is this one:
9 The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, 10 and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 11 And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, 12 that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness. – 2 Thes 2:9-12
For those who don’t really want to believe in God’s word, there are other things they can choose from. Now that’s not to say that they’ve been led astray and can’t help it. 2 Pet 3:9 tells us that God wants everyone to be saved and do what’s right. But some people just aren’t interested, and so God allowed a way for them to do what they want. When people embrace evolution, the Big Bang, etc, etc, they’re looking for anything other than what God said, and they’ll find just enough substance to convince themselves, and therefore, blind themselves to the truth. Let’s not fall into the same trap. Let’s keep open minds and continually strive to find the truth, whatever that might be.