Monday, 23 January 2012

Reaching the top of the mountain

It is not a science book, but it is interesting that when the Bible touches on issues of science and the natural world it is always right, often long before science confirmed it, and long before they could have naturally known it!

A few examples:
The universe had a beginning and was created out of nothing (Genesis 1 v 1; Hebrews 11 v 3);
The expansion of the universe (e.g. Zechariah 12 v 1; Isaiah 42 v 5; 45 v 12; Psalm 104 v 2);
The earth hangs on nothing (Job 26 v 7);
The earth is a sphere (Isaiah 40 v 22);
There are numberless stars (Jeremiah 33 v 22);
Light is in motion (Job 38 v 19-20);
It is day and night at the same time (Luke 17 v 34-35);
Wind blows in cyclones (Ecclesiastes 1 v 6);
There is a water cycle (Ecclesiastes 1 v 7)
The life of the flesh is in the blood (Leviticus 17 v 11).

This list could be added to, but enough has been listed that really ought to make the unbeliever think.  How could these primitive people without access to microscope or telescope have known these things?  Perhaps what they said was true...?  Maybe they were speaking from and for the Creator of all things.

The agnostic astronomer, physicist and cosmologist, Robert Jastrow, faced up to this, and had to confess:
Now we see how the astronomical evidence supports the biblical view of the origin of the world....the essential elements in the astronomical and biblical accounts of Genesis are the same. Consider the enormousness of the problem : Science has proved that the universe exploded into being at a certain moment. It asks: 'What cause produced this effect? Who or what put the matter or energy into the universe?' And science cannot answer these questions.
For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountain of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak; as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries.
There is a strange ring of feeling and emotion in these reactions [of scientists to evidence that the universe had a sudden beginning]. They come from the heart whereas you would expect the judgments to come from the brain. Why? I think part of the answer is that scientists cannot bear the thought of a natural phenomenon which cannot be explained, even with unlimited time and money. There is a kind of religion in science, it is the religion of a person who believes there is order and harmony in the universe, and every effect must have its cause, [but still believes that] there is no first cause... "This religious faith of the scientist is violated by the discovery that the world had a beginning under conditions in which the known laws of physics are not valid, and as a product of forces or circumstances we cannot discover. When that happens, the scientist has lost control...

The scientist shouts with triumph at the magnitude of his discoveries, while the simple Bible believer says about many of them, "Yes, I knew that, it says that in my Bible!"