Thinking Cap # 20 - The Question: Big Bang & God.

For years there has been a war for the hearts and minds of men going on between the scientific world and Christians. Is this a young universe (measured in thousands) or an old universe (measured in billions of years). Some of the world's greatest people of faith started out as the world's greatest skeptics. Note the leery questions and doubts of Abraham (Ge. 15:8; 17:17), Moses (Ex. 3:18; 4:1-13), Gideon (Jud. 6:13-17, 36- 40), David (Ps. 22:1), Jeremiah (Jer. 12:1), all of the disciples and Paul (Acts. 9:1-5) to name just a few.

The question here is not "evolution." Not only is that bad theology, but also bad science. The question is did our universe originate in a precisely controlled beginning in a hot flash producing an ever expanding creation (refered to as the "big bang") billions of years ago. Or, was is just a few thousand years ago.

Those advancing the young earth view can pose a serious stumbling block to many who fear they must subscribe to it in order to believe the Bible. Reasonable people, the argument goes, who have some knowledge of science will tend to dismiss our gospel along with our geology.

This has got to be one of my tougher "Thinking Caps" in that it has been an area that I have struggled with for years. I am an avowed "trekkie" and have always had an interest in astronomy. In my High School Philosophy class and in an adult Discipleship 3 class I teach a series titled "The Gospel in the Stars." God's hand is clearly seen in the universe and the more we study the universe, the more it lines up with what the Bible says. That is why I have had these nagging questions in my mind all these years regarding the age of the universe. I can stand up and quote the "party line" and say that it is a young universe (several thousands of years) and all my Christian friends smile at me. But there has just been too much reliable data available (not on the earth, but in the solar system and beyond) that screams "billions" of years of age. This "Thinking Cap" is longer than usual, and still just opinion, but I couldn't find any way to make it smaller and still communicate the total concept.

1. Evidences of an old universe include:

2. There have been several theories floated to explain all this. Some of which are:

3. To proceed, I need to give you a couple definitions. I will greatly simplify this material for your sake and for my sake.

4. Assumptions that I would ask you to consider.

5. Some Scriptural background for the assumptions.

6. The heavens and earth God created in Ge. 1 consisted of 1) a large, mostly empty space (the heavens of heavens), and 2) a ball or ordinary water more than two light-years in diameter. This water contained within itself what would become a) the waters above the expanse, b) another heavens called the expanse and the stars within it, and c) the earth. Creation week can thus unfold.

Thus, a young earth, an old universe, an inerrant and consistent Bible and good science. Rom 11:33 "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!"

Pleasant Thinking,
Kent Haralson


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