“Thus says God the LORD, Who created the heavens and stretched them out, Who spread out the earth and its offspring, Who gives breath to the people on it and spirit to those who walk in it.” Is 42:5 (ESV)
Genesis is not a scientific document, but it does provide enough information to construct a conceptual model useful for scientific study. In addition to serving as a conceptual starting point, Genesis purports itself to be a written revelation given directly and personally by God to man. Since it is divinely revealed we can expect it to still be factually accurate as well as metaphorically true.
The creation account does not attempt to directly answer the technical details of quantum mechanics, cosmic background radiation or red shift. Unlike the naturalistic theories, however, the Creation account does address the profound and inescapable question: Why? If sufficient peace can be found with the “how” of Genesis, the “why” becomes much more acceptable to a rational mind.
God gave us the Creation account to reveal Himself and His love for us. Our purpose in constructing a scientific model is to seek Him, to better understand what He did and why, and to glorify Him. If we try to strip down God’s glory by gaining knowledge, we approach this subject with the wrong motivation. If our goal is to prove someone else wrong with the force of superior truth, we are wrongly motivated. Jesus made it quite clear: he did not come to bring condemnation – those who refuse to believe condemn themselves. It does us no good to be technically correct about Creation if we alienate those who need the Creator. Jesus did not tell anyone to know facts, he instructed us to believe in him and offered his life in exchange for our faith – his resurrection as a demonstration of his authority and worthiness to be our Lord and Savior.
There are several Creationist cosmological origin theories. With each theory we need to ask two critical questions. First, does the theory predict the evidence we observe? Second, does the theory contradict the plain text of scripture? We must assume supernatural action where scripture says, but we should not assume it where it is not justified by scripture just to make a theory work.
According to the Mature Creation theory, God created the light from distant stars so that they would appear mature and distant. This theory, like it geological counterpart theory that God created fossils to make the earth appear older, fails to explain anything. Scripture does not support this theory. It is untestable and it discourages further investigation. Worse still, it suggests God created the illusion that He did not create things according to His own revelation. The logic is circular and it essentially says God intentionally misleads us. This theory offers no technical merit because it excuses without addressing the problem of distant starlight and it does not address red shift or CMB.
The light shortcut theory was put forward by Moon and Spencer in the 1960s. It essentially says that distant starlight passes through shortcuts in space to appear here quickly. This theory is not supported by any scientific evidence and does not address CMB or red shift. It is generally discounted today.
In the 1980’s Barry Setterfield expounded on data from the 17th century and Paul Steidl’s theory that the speed of light was much higher in the past. More recent analysis and new test data show that light speed has not changed (beyond the margin of error of 17th century instruments) over time. Like the theories above, this theory does not address CMB or red shift.
The first Creationist theory to attempt to tackle the problem of cosmic microwave background (CMB) radiation suggested CMB was the result of heating of cosmic dust by starlight. This theory did not address the distance or red shift problems. It also fails to explain CMB outside the plane of our own galaxy.
The most plausible cosmological model available today based on scripture was published by Dr. Russell Humphreys. His model is more complex and comprehensive than previous Creationist theories. His model addresses CMB and red shift as well as distant starlight in scriptural context. The balance of this chapter is dedicated to outlining the major elements of Humphreys’ cosmology model.
Scripture provides a number of important ground rules that any comprehensive Creationist cosmology must adhere to. The following is deduced from the first chapter of Genesis and in many cases with additional support elsewhere in scripture: The universe started out as a rotating ball of water of finite size with boundaries and a center, beyond which is a heaven. Then there was light and a light cycle. Then an expanse formed in the water ball and the expanse was also called heaven. Matter that would become our planet was near the center of this water ball. Planet Earth was a distinct body with land, seas, and plant life by the end of the third day. The solar system was complete and starlight was visible on the surface of Earth by the end of the fourth day. Animal and human life formed on the fifth and sixth days and it was all “very good.”
Humphreys was the first to put forward a fairly complete cosmological model based on the above core propositions given in the first chapter of Genesis. His model is similar to the Big Bang model in that both rely on Einstein’s mathematics. There are two key differences. First, Humphreys’ model assumes a spherical shaped universe (with boundaries and a center) – one of the three possibilities allowed by Einstein. This difference has a profound impact on the approach to the model and fundamentally requires the other difference. The other difference is acceptance of a supernatural force intervening in natural law at specific times and places as described in scripture.
Humpreys theorizes that all natural laws (physics, chemistry, thermodynamics, etc.) were in place and operational the instant material reality (space, time, energy/matter) was created. Since the entire universe was a relatively small ball of water (perhaps 2 light-years across), The gravitational forces present in the water would have resulted in the material universe almost instantaneously forming a black hole. The gravitational forces would have immediately begun tearing the atoms apart in a furious storm of fission and fusion. The energy conversions produced intense natural light in some if not all parts of the ball. Large amounts of the water would be converted to other elements including a great deal of hydrogen, but also some fusion would produce heavy elements. In principle, this effect is similar to the explosion part of the Big Bang theory – at least as it is understood by most people. The rotational force described by Gen 1:2 (the spirit hovered over the face of the deep) was responsible for initiating the dark/light cycle.
On the second day, God intervenes in the black hole compression to produce what some scientists would all a white hole. A white hole is essentially a black hole running in reverse. Matter and light are ejected and space expands outward as the white hole collapses. Unlike events of other days, God does not say the expansion is complete at the end of the second day. The delay of stars’ appearance until the fourth day suggests space expanded for at least days 2 through 4. Since all stars are made up of the stuff from the original water, they all started out relatively close to what would become our planet. Their light did not have to travel far at all to reach Earth. Since they began emitting light at or even before the expansion started, their light was able to reach earth as soon as the white hole finished collapsing into (or very near) Earth.
An important part of Einstein’s relativity is something called gravitational time dilation. This means that clocks run at different speeds depending on where you are in a gravitational field. Lower in the field (closer to the center of gravity) the clock runs slower. Near the edge, the clock runs faster. If you are near the center of gravity, it seems like the edge is running faster than what you perceive to be “real” time. If you were at the edge looking at the center, it would seem like the center was running slower than “real” time. In reality, one second is one second regardless of where you are in the gravity field. Suppose a clock at the center and one at the edge both start out at exactly the same time (12:00). When the clock at the center reads 1:00, the clock at the edge might read 1:15. The difference is not compression or stretching of time per se, but a difference in the rate of time passage due to relative position in the gravitational field.
Gravitational time dilation has been document by synchronizing two extremely accurate clocks at different elevations and observing that time passes slightly faster at the higher elevation. Interpretation of time dilation measurements allows us to understand black hole time and gravity mechanics. Once we understand how a black hole works, we can then understand how a white hole (black hole in reverse) might work. Then we can begin to understand how time dilation would operate on the scale of the universe.
In Stephen Hawking’s A Brief History of Time, he describes what an astronaut entering a black hole would observe (pretending the astronaut is not crushed by the gravity). He also describes what a distant astronomer watching the astronaut would observe. Humphreys quotes Hawking, then goes on to add more. For the sake of simplicity I will paraphrase. Since no light can escape the gravity of the black hole, the closer the astronaut gets, the more of the horizon appears to be empty. If the astronaut is scheduled to arrive at the event horizon (the point beyond which gravity is so intense light cannot escape) at 12:00, the astronomer’s watch would register an hour passing while the astronaut’s watch ticks off the span from 11:57 to 11:58. In the minute it takes the astronaut to get from 11:58 to 11:59, the astronomer’s clock advances a full day. The astronomer never sees the astronaut’s watch reach 12:00. Instead, the light from the astronaut grows redder and redder until he disappears. If the astronaut were looking out, back toward the astronomer’s location, it would seem like the astronomer is running fast-forward, getting faster as the astronaut gets closer to the horizon. Very near the horizon the astronomer would seem to grow old almost instantly. As he crosses the horizon, the astronaut does not sense any change in the rate of time locally, but suddenly he would be able to see light from inside the horizon. At the event horizon, time would seem to nearly stand still compared to objects far from the center of gravity.
In white hole mechanics, the process runs in reverse. As the event horizon collapses to and through the earth, vast ages of time would be passing while only hours or even a day or so passed on earth. Since time would seem nearly stopped on Earth, there would be more than ample time farther out in space for light to reach Earth from the most distant reaches of expanding space. The bible describes the passage of time from the perspective of Earth – the place God created for us to view the universe from. While only a few days passed on earth (Creation days 2 to 4), the universe expanded and light from distant stars and galaxies reached Earth.
White hole cosmology with gravitational time dilation applied to a bound universe with a near-center Earth explains more than distant red-shifted starlight. It also explains CMB. The terrible atomic forces at work on Creation Day 1 generated a great deal of heat. This heat was being generated uniformly throughout the ball. As space expanded out, the residual heat expanded. Space and matter cooled, but a small residual still remains. The heat was generated uniformly from within the original ball of matter, so it is not a reflection back from edge, so there is no cosmic microwave shadow. White hole cosmology better predicts the observed nature of CMB than Big Bang cosmology.
Red shift is the result of the expansion of space. White hole cosmology predicts Earth is near the center of the universe and so we expect to see approximately equal red shift from all galaxies of approximately distance from us. Big Bang cosmology predicts a similar observation, but it requires an additional fourth dimension of space with space being curved like a Pringles.
The Hebrew term translated “expanse” in most modern English translations was translated “firmament” in KJV. Regardless of the English term used, the Hebrew term suggests a flattening or spreading. The concept carries with it the idea of something physical being pulled thin. The phrase “fabric of space” comes from common explanations of Einstein’s relativity where three-dimensional space is viewed as if it were matter. There is no biblical or scientific reason to believe the expansion stopped at the end of Day 2. This is the only day missing the phrase “it was good.” The expansion would have continued at least through the end of the fourth day, probably through the end of the creation week, and very likely continues even now. The expansion of space is also described in numerous other parts of the bible (Job 9:8, Ps 104:2, Is 40:22, 42:5, Jer 10:12, Zech 12:1).
The “Pioneer anomaly” is startling evidence for the current expansion of space. Pioneer 10 and 11 were launched in the early 1970s. They visited outer planets then left our solar system in essentially opposite directions. Telemetry data from the craft indicated they were decelerating at a constant rate as they got farther away. The gravitational pull of our solar system does not account for this deceleration. Scientists have spent years researching the data and considering any and all possible explanations. The rate of slowing is approximately equal to the speed of light times the Hubble constant, a figure that is used to calculate the relationship between cosmic distance and red shift. The Pioneer Anomaly is the first hard data that supports the biblical proposition that the expansion of the universe which began on Day 2 continues. The “waters above” are ever increasing the tension on space-time. Looking backward, the rate of tension increase seen today in the Pioneer data indicates that only a few thousand years ago the time dilation would have been very strong. The Big Bang theory does not explain or predict the Pioneer Anomaly, however the Anomaly is predicted by the creation model.
Galactic organization, whether our own Milky Way or any distant galactic cluster, begs the question of organizer. The problem of galactic organization is really no different from the question of molecular organization in living tissue. It is simply too complex to be explained away by chance. The order we observe must have been put in place on purpose – the second law of thermodynamics rules out the possibility of natural self-organization.