Now you may be asking and pondering after reaching the halfway point of this blog series, “But Chris, what about the Big Bang and the theory of Evolution? Does the Bible affirm these too? Are these compatible with the Creation Account?” Well, for some they do see compatibility with the Creation Account, while others do not see compatibility with the Creation Account. I happen to be in the middle where I can understand why one would affirm certain things such as theistic evolution (1), while on the other hand I cannot see how someone could hold a view like “The Cosmic Temple View (2),” as I find that one preposterous in light of the whole canon of Scripture.
Although in reference to the theistic evolutionary position, I find that one only slightly possible (5-10% confidence vs. 90-95% doubt/skepticism). If and only from the Molinist understanding of God’s Sovereignty interacting with us free agents out of our own libertarian free will to enact the progression of the Creation Account, in such a way as that theory entails. Besides that, I have zero confidence or affirmation for the theistic evolutionist view as I see too many holes in the belly of that ship.
Yet when it comes to the Big Bang Theory, I see a different and much more compelling side of things. For when we look at not only the Creation Account, but basic Cosmology I see a very much aligned view of the “how” of the Creation Account, although I am unsure on exactly how the “when” occurs in history. Specifically in Genesis Ch. 1, what we see is quite comparable to the Big Bang Model proposed by Belgian priest Georges Lemaître who was a physics professor at the Catholic University of Leuven and an astronomer as well. He theorized correctly that everything directly points back to a moment where the Universe began and was started somehow by something with his infamous Friedmann-Lemaître Model that eventually led to the Standard Model of the Big Bang Theory released in the late 1920s.
Of course, this discovery spun the academic community for a loop because the majority always assumed that the Universe was infinite without a beginning. Especially naturalists and atheists, for they thought that if the Universe had no beginning, then it must have had no beginner or creator of the beginning. Talk about a wake up call! So despite what others may say, the Big Bang model that Friedmann and Lemaître created came from the mind of a theist, Lemaître that is (3).
So how does the Big Bang Model fit with the Creation Account? Not quite sure on the logistics as I am a writer first and foremost, not an astronomer or cosmologist. But as I have investigated not only the Creation Account in-depth, alongside refreshing myself on the Standard Model of the Big Bang Theory, I find some simple similarities. First off, the Standard Model proposes that the Big Bang happened immediately. There was no pause from the beginning of the Model to where we are within the Model. According to more recent understandings of the Model, nuclear fusion begins and ends within the first ninety seconds of the Big Bang expansion.
Next, the first nuclei form, which are a fancy word for what is described as “the positively charged mass within an atom, composed of neutrons and protons, and possessing most of the mass but occupying only a small fraction of the volume of the atom (4).” In layman terms, this is the core or central part of what will eventually become an atom, as I believe it is to be understood and as always I can be mistaken in this respect concerning the sciences. Another way of understanding it is like saying that the nuclei is a seed and the atom is the tree.
Regardless, what we must conclude from Scripture and the Standard Model for the Big Bang is that they both began immediately from a non-material source. “And God said” plus phrases like “and there was light” combined with “it was so” verify this claim that a non-material source caused a material resource (i.e. the Universe) to exist. What non-material source could do such a thing as that? Well, a transcendent being like God who is outside of the boundaries of space, time, matter, and so on is the most probable source that could input non-material information (speaking things into existence) into what is now a material Universe (5).
But let’s go a step further and see other moments when God commanded something and it immediately happened. Like turning water into wine (6), parting the Dead Sea (7), or even healing various diseases simply by saying so (8). How does this immediacy then comply with the billions of years that the latest version of the Big Bang Theory proclaims? Well, I would argue that the Big Bang did not take the estimated time-span of roughly fourteen billion years, but instead within the time-span of four days. The first four days of the Creation account. How do I support this crazy claim? I have a thought in-line with what John Lennox has been saying for years, but taken to another level.
When we speak, there is an echo from the sound that our words make reverberating in our environment as sound waves. The Standard Model of the Big Bang Theory proposes that since the beginning of the initial cosmological singularity, the Universe has been steadily expanding in a consistent shift of space. This can be seen in the mysteriously unknown force known as ‘dark energy’ that, according to the theory, has been the main agent of this phenomenon and can be followed by the red shift seen in our Universe being stretched across space.
When God created the heavens and the earth (the Universe and all that is within it), did His words have an echo similar to ours as humans when we speak? Is that the effect that we observe with dark energy, the expansion of the universe, and red-shift? Is the action of God causing the Universe into existence evidenced by the reaction of this ‘echo’ observed in His Creation (9)? Not quite sure, but it is a different way to think of the effect that God has on His own Creation. I refer to this idea of mine as the “Echo-Expansion Theory” and will be something later developed as I find it to be a fascinating way to consider the evidences of God within His own Creation.
Also, I think that if the rate of initial expansion of the Big Bang Model were to be increased, while the timeline were to be condensed, then it could be a possible new perspective on the days of Creation in light of the Big Bang discovery. One more thought and that is this: I believe this expansion of the Universe can be displayed in the cycle of every living thing and would argue that it is another evidence for a single architect of the Universe with a single vision for a sole purpose. This one just happens to be a bigger fingerprint than the others left behind by God. For instance, a human newborn displays this expansion I’m talking about.
During the initial first few years of its lifespan, the human newborn will grow immensely at a rate that the rest of the child’s life will never meet again. The first 9 months for the human newborn have the most growth due to the compound growth of human cells (1 cell to 2 cells to 4 cells, etc.) just like the proposed first 90 seconds of the Big Bang (nuclei to atoms). It’s development from childhood into adolescence will be constant, yet less noticeable (like the Universe) then when it was first conceived (i.e. the rate of expansion within the first 90 seconds of the Big Bang versus the current rate of expansion of the Universe in its current form).
Eventually, the adult human will slowly deteriorate and die, which is the unwinding of their lifespan. Now the Universe is said to have a similar experience from those who know the Big Bang Theory well. It started out growing and expanding rapidly (an infant), the rate of expansion remained consistent for a while before picking up again because of a unknown phenomena dubbed ‘dark energy’ (a child going into puberty, which leads to mature adulthood), and then will level out once more at a consistent rate (adulthood), before finally expanding past the point of life (old age until death).
In a concise way, the expansion of the universe is the echo of creation. Is it just a thought of mine? Sure, but I find it to be an interesting parallel that can be seen in plant, animal, and other life cycles. Or maybe this jump to my Echo-Expansion Theory is completely wrong? Which could absolutely be the case. Is there another Model I may be open too? Yep, as a matter of fact there are two: one proposed by John Lennox and one proposed by John Sailhamer (Genesis Unbound). We will look at both briefly before moving on as I find them to be saying very similar things concerning the Big Bang Theory and the Creation Account that do not need further explanation to understand what they are saying.
Lennox suggests that based off of the initial Creation Account’s Day 1 starting in verse 3 and an indeterminate time-frame for versus 1-2 we can conclude that “it would be logically possible to believe that the days of Genesis are twenty-four-hour days (of one earth week) and to believe that the universe is very ancient” (10). The other view from Sailhamer, conjectures that Genesis 1:1 is the period of time that the Universe was created, whereas Genesis 1:2-2:4 refers to an earth-week where divine preparations were made to establish humanity as the primary creatures that inhabited Earth. I believe that the Model proposed by Lennox to be more probable, but Sailhamer may be onto something.
And that right there is a summary of my beliefs on the Big Bang Theory and all topics discussed above there in. The last blog-post of this series will focus on death and its effect on the Creation Account. With that, Godspeed and Jesus bless!
- John Walton, The Lost World of Genesis One
- Alexander Friedmann was noted for being very irreligious, although his marriage ceremony was very religious. Possibly due to family tradition and familial ties. He contributed to the Friedmann-Lemaître Standard Model of the Big Bang Theory with a series of mathematical equations that led to similar findings as Lemaître did in his own respective field.
- Seven Days That Divide The World (P. 101). John Lennox originated this idea of a non-material source inputting non-material information (i.e. language) to create a material resource in many of his respective books, debates, and lectures. The one I drew from was his previously mentioned work footnoted above.
- John 2:1-11
- Exodus 14:13-31
- Matthew 4:23
- Job 38:18, Psalm 19:1-6 (Do these passages of Scripture infer my theory or do they infer other truths about our Universe?).
- Seven Days That Divide The World (P. 53)