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Is the Big Bang Compatible with the Bible?

[Excerpt from Unreliable: The Science and Logic of Bill Nye by Heath Henning. This book can be downloaded for free here.]

During the debate, Bill Nye brought attention to the big bang theory. He said:

Edwin Hubble sat there at this very big telescope, night after night, studying the heavens. And he found that the stars are moving apart. The stars are moving apart, and he wasn’t sure why, but it was clear that the stars are moving farther and farther apart all the time. So people talked about it for a couple of decades, and then eventually another astronomer, Fred Hoyle just remarked, “Well, it was like there was a Big Bang.” There was an explosion. This is to say, since everything is moving apart, it’s reasonable that at one time they were all together. And there was a place from whence these things expanded. It was a remarkable insight. But people still questioned it for decades, conventional scientists, questioned it for decades.1)Bill Nye Presentation (30 minutes) during the Bill Nye Ken Ham debate, “Is Creation a Viable Model of Origin In Today’s Modern Scientific Era?” Feb. 4, 2014; transcript at http://www.youngearth.org/index.php/archives/rmcf-articles/item/21-transcript-of-ken-ham-vs-bill-nye-debate

It is interesting how selective Nye chooses to be with the information he presented. “In his 1950 BBC radio series, The Nature of the Universe, Hoyle mockingly called this idea the ‘big bang,’ considering it preposterous.”2)http://creation.com/big-bang-critic-dies-fred-hoyle#f2 Nye refers to Hoyle’s comment as if he were to leave us with the impression that Hoyle actually believed the big bang theory – but he did not. Hoyle wrote, “Big-Bang cosmology refers to an epoch that cannot be reached by any form of astronomy, and, in more than two decades, it has not produced a single successful prediction.”3)Fred Hoyle, Home Is Where the Wind Blows, University Science Books, Mill Valley, California, 414, 1994, as reported in The Skeptic, 16(1):52. Hoyle believed in the Steady State cosmological theory. He also ridiculed the idea of Darwinian evolution as the man who originated the now famous analogy of comparing the odds of a simple cell evolving randomly to how “a tornado sweeping through a junk-yard might assemble a Boeing 747 from the materials therein.”4)Hoyle on evolution, Nature 294(5837):105, November 12, 1981 Bill Nye should appreciate this analogy since he use to work for Boeing on the 747s.

Nye’s statement acknowledged that for decades after the big bang theory was in development, it was in no wise eagerly accepted by secular scientists. In fact, Edwin Hubble was well aware that observing stars expanding apart from each other does not necessarily prove the big bang theory. “As Hubble admitted, the observed cosmic expansion could equally well be explained by the fact that we really are near the center of the universe. In fact, features of the red shift are consistent with this but are a problem if the earth is not unique.”5)Jonathan Sarfati, Refuting Compromise, Master Books, 2004, p. 156 The big bang theory is still not eagerly accepted by “conventional scientist.” “By the end of the 1960s the big bang had become almost universally accepted, and it has now penetrated the popular consciousness so deeply that at times one forgets it is still just a theory.”6)Anthony L. Peratt, “Not With a Big Bang,” The Sciences (January/Februrary 1990), p. 26-27

This factor came out during a debate between Christian apologist William Lane Craig and atheist Michael Tooley at the University of Colorado in November of 1994. When Dr. Craig resorted to identifying God as the first cause using the big bang to create the universe, Dr. Tooley exposed the flawed science behind the theory. Dr. Michael Tooley said:

Dr. Craig also appeals to the Big Bang. Here my remarks are based in part on a paper, “Should We Believe in the Big Bang,” by Mark Zangari and Graeme Rhook read at the Philosophy of Science Association Conference about a month ago. For there are points in their paper which are very relevant to Dr. Craig’s argument.

First, the Big Bang theory has recently been criticized by a number of physicists who contend that it suffers some critical anomalies, such as the flatness problem and the horizon problem.

Secondly, there is evidence against the Big Bang interpretation of red shift, since there is evidence that nearby objects have intrinsic red shifts independent of their velocity relative to the earth.

Thirdly, the Big Bang theory is supported in part by its prediction of background radiation. That’s one of the main reasons it was adopted. But Zangari and Rhook point out in their article that the Big Bang theory predicts a background radiation of five degrees Kelvin, whereas the measured temperature is not five degrees but two point seven degrees Kelvin. If you consider Hoyle’s theory, which was published in 1946, it also predicted background radiation, and the method used there turns out to predict background radiation of a temperature of two point eight degrees Kelvin, almost exactly the observed temperature. So it’s a theory that does a better job of explaining background radiation than the Big Bang theory.

Fourthly, in order to avoid serious anomalies-such as the flatness problem and the horizon problem-the Big Bang theory had to introduce an additional hypothesis called the inflation hypothesis. But that hypothesis has recently come under serious attack.

Fifthly, the Big Bang theory predicts an enormous amount of matter that hasn’t yet been observed-something of the order of ninety-eight percent to ninety-nine percent-so-called dark matter. Physicists have been searching for this dark matter, and haven’t succeeded in finding it.

Finally, there are serious inconsistencies between estimates of the ages of the stars and the age of the universe. I noticed that Dr. Craig mentioned that the universe is about fifteen billion years old. According to the New York Times, October 27th, the best estimate now is that it’s between eight billion and twelve billion years old. And unfortunately, the best estimate of the age of certain stars is about sixteen billion years old. So the theory is hopelessly inconsistent at the present.7)Dr. Michael Tooley – first rebuttal, Does God Exist? William Lane Craig vs. Dr. Michael Tooley University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado, United States – November 1994 : http://www.reasonablefaith.org/does-god-exist-the-craig-tooley-debate

Tooley presented evidence that successfully diminished Dr. Craig’s argument which Dr. Craig was only able to recover from because Tooley identified with the multiverse theory which is even more speculative fantasy as Dr. Craig pointed out, “That is a postulate of pure faith which is no more scientific and no more rational than belief in the existence of God. And it is especially questionable in view of the fact that there is no independent reason to think that such a metaphysical hyperspace exists, whereas there are independent arguments for the existence of God.”8)Dr. William Lane Craig – second rebuttal, Does God Exist? William Lane Craig vs. Dr. Michael Tooley University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado, United States – November 1994 : http://www.reasonablefaith.org/does-god-exist-the-craig-tooley-debate

Sadly, Dr. Craig refuses to learn from his mistake of compromising the Bible as if it were compatible with the Big Bang. The second century Christian author Clement of Alexandria was correct to state, “it has been shown, that the knowledge of the first cause of the universe is of faith, but not of demonstration.”9)Clement of Alexandria, The Stromata, or Miscellanies, bk. II, chap. V, para. 5; The Ante-Nicene Fathers, ed. Alexander Roberts and James Donaldson; 1885-1887, Hendrickson, 1994, Vol. 2, p. 352 One must have faith to believe in the big bang or the biblical account of creation. Neither is scientifically demonstrable. For Craig to have faith in the big bang would negate his faith in the Bible’s account of creation since the two are not compatible. If he can admit there are independent arguments for the existence of God then he should simply put his faith in God’s word without synchronizing humanistic faith in the big bang.

The Big Bang simply does not abide within the realm of science. Jonathan Sarfati mentioned “Creationist cosmologist, Dr. John Rankin, also showed mathematically in his Ph.D. thesis that galaxies would not form from the ‘big bang.’”10)Jonathan Sarfati, Ph.D., Refuting Evolution, Master Books, 1990, p. 93 John Rankin wrote “So the question I tackled was: Would statistical fluctuation in the cosmological models currently believed to be realistic representations of the cosmological structure of the universe grow under gravitational laws of general relativity to the level of becoming statistically significant?… After five years of heavy mathematical research concentrated on this one question, the answer came back: No.”11)Dr. John Rankin, In Six Days: Why Fifty Scientists Choose to believe in Creation (ed. John F. Ashton), Master Books, 2001, p. 120 Rankin’s equation might be too difficult for most people to grasp, but Isaac Asimov expressed a simply mathematical problem. “Since matter and antimatter are equivalent in all respects but that of electromagnetic charge oppositeness, any force [i.e., the big bang] that would create one should have to create the other, and the universe should be made of equal quantities of each. This is a dilemma. Theory tells us there should be antimatter out there, and observation refuses to back it up.”12)Isaac Asimov, Asimov’s New Guide to Science, Basic Books, 1984, p. 343

Bill Nye wrote in his book Undeniable concerning the Big Bang: “In the 1960s, the two of them [Robert Wilson and Arno Penzias] found that the whole sky is glowing [from cosmic microwave background radiation], which is exactly what cosmologists who worked on the theory of the Big Bang had predicted.”13)Bill Nye, (ed. Corey Powell), Undeniable: Evolution and the Science of Creation, St. Martin’s Press (New York), 2014, p. 15 Once again he is guilty of a logical fallacy. In formal logic, the fallacy he committed is known as “Affirming the Consequent.” An example can be seen with the following formula:

If the big bang was true, we’d expect to see cosmic microwave background.

We do see cosmic microwave background.

Therefore, the big bang is true.

We have already seen Dr. Tooley refute this argument by expressing how the prediction and observation simply do not add up.

None of the predictions of the background temperature based on the Big Bang were close enough to qualify as successes… without a realistic quantitative prediction, the Big Bang’s hypothetical “fireball” becomes indistinguishable from the natural minimum temperature of all cold matter in space. But none of the predictions, which ranged between 5°K and 50°K, matched observations. And the Big Bang offers no explanation for the kind of intensity variations with wavelength seen in radio galaxies.14)“The Top Thirty Problems with the Big Bang,” http://metaresearch.org/cosmology/BB-top-30.asp

When Tooley mentioned this during the 1994 debate, William Lane Craig’s comeback was “The temperature background for the microwave radiation is certainly within the margin of error that would normally be allowed for scientific theory prediction.”15)Dr. William Lane Craig – second rebuttal, Does God Exist? William Lane Craig vs. Dr. Michael Tooley University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado, United States – November 1994 : http://www.reasonablefaith.org/does-god-exist-the-craig-tooley-debate However, Jonathan Sarfati commented that “this nice story is undermined by the fact that later in the 1950s, [Georgi Antonovich] Gamow and his students made a number of estimates of the background temperature ranging from 3 to 50 K.”16)Jonathan Sarfati, Refuting Compromise, Master books, 2004, p. 155 With such a range, they still got it wrong and Hoyle’s calculated a closer figure based on his “Steady State theory” which “is a now-obsolete expanding universe model alternative to the Big Bang theory of the universe and its origin.”17)https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steady_State_theory

Further ramification revolving around the cosmic microwave background radiation is evidence against the Big Bang theory.

A number of other issues are frequently downplayed when the Big Bang theory is suggested which a growing number of secular scientists are willing to identify. For instance, An Open Letter to the Scientific Community published in New Scientists, May 22, 2004 stated:

The big bang today relies on a growing number of hypothetical entities, things that we have never observed– inflation, dark matter and dark energy are the most prominent examples….

But the big bang can’t survive without these fudge factors….

Today, virtually all financial and experimental resources in cosmology are devoted to big bang studies. Funding comes from only a few sources, and all peer-review comities that control them are dominated by supporters of the big bang. As a result, the dominance of the big bang within the field has become self-sustaining, irrespectively of the scientific validity of the theory.18)Lerner, E., Bucking the big bang, New Scientist 182(2448)20, 22 May 2004

This open letter originally had 33 signers and within the first years it increased to 28619)The original letter was published in May 22, 2004; the updated number of signers is dated as March 29, 2005,and can be read in full at http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-chat/1372828/posts

Dr. Tooley referred to the “flatness problem” meaning that if the universe expanded from a big bang, all matter should be evenly dispersed throughout space. Richard A. Swenson observed, “The galaxies are spread across the expanse of the universe, yet not evenly. In some areas that are Great Voids, regions containing few galaxies. In other areas, however, there are clusters of galaxies together, and even superclusters. The Great Wall, discovered in 1989, is the largest structure in the universe, with a huge concentration of galaxies. No one knows how or why it could have formed in the way that it did. Another area of note is called the Great Attractor. This mysterious region, only recently discovered, is so massive that it is pulling other regions rapidly toward it…”20)Richard A. Swenson, M.D., More Than Meets The Eye: Fascinating Glimpses of God’s Power and Design, Navpress (Colorado Springs, Co.), 2000, p. 144-145 Eric J. Lerner wrote:

In the past five years astronomers have discovered still larger clumps: huge aggregates of matter that span a billion light-years or more, stretching across a substantial fraction of the observable universe.

These observations conflict with all current versions of the Big Bang theory, which do not explain how a smooth explosion could have produced clumps of such size. Moreover, if such clumps exist, Einstein’s equation do not require the universe to have once been confined to the head of a pin.21)Eric J. Lerner, “The Big Bang Never Happened,” Discover, vol. 9 (June 1988), p. 72

If the universe was once confined to one central point of which it expanded from; physics would demand that all objects that share a common source should rotate in the same direction. Observation reveals (1) entire galaxies are known to spin backwards,22)http://www.spaceanswers.com/deep-space/why-does-ngc-4622-spin-backwards/ (2) 27 planets orbit backwards outside our solar system,23)http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2010/04/100414-new-planets-backward-orbit/ (3) Jupiter has 52 out of 67 moons that orbit backwards,24)Jason Lisle, Ph.D. 2013. The Solar System: Jupiter. Acts & Facts. 42 (12). https://www.icr.org/article/7834/256 and (4) Venus rotates backwards.25)http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/why-venus-spins-the-wrong/ Such anomalies baffle Big Bang evolutionists. Also noteworthy is the fact that the inner center of spiral galaxies spin faster than the outside arms which prove young ages since they remain orderly, not twisted beyond recognition.



Heath Henning
Heath Henning
Heath heads the Set Free addictions ministry on Friday nights at Mukwonago Baptist Church and is involved in evangelism on the University of Wisconsin Whitewater campus, offering his expertise in apologetics at the weekly Set Free Bible Study every Tuesday evening. He currently lives in East Troy, Wisconsin with his wife and nine children. Read Heath Henning's Testimony

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