Christianity Cross-Examined, philosopher Kenneth Samples shares seven scientific reasons why we can be confident the universe began to exist:
1. Albert's Einstein's theorems of general relativity suggest an expanding universe. Expansion implies a beginning or point of origin. Einstein initially "buggered" his equations to get rid of the implied expansion, but later realized his blunder.
2. Astronomer Edwin Hubble subsequently observed that the universe is indeed expanding from a central point of origin with galaxies receding away from each other at incredible speeds.
3. Catholic priest and astronomer Georges Lemaitre, using general relativity and the observed recession of galaxies, proposed a viable theory for the expansion of the universe, which implied a beginning.
4. The second law of thermodynamics involves a universe that is winding down (the amount of usable energy in the universe is continually decreasing over time), meaning the universe not only has a beginning but an end as well.
5. Given that the cosmos is winding down, if the universe were eternal and thus infinite in age, then the life cycles of stars would have already reached their completion and suffered heat death.
6. The discovery of the static noise or echo of the cosmic microwave background radiation that the big bang model had predicted would be left behind from the initial explosion serves to confirm the universe's beginning.
7. The oldest measured age of things observed in the universe clusters around 13.8 billion years, thus evidencing a temporal age for the cosmos.1
Samples then goes on to ask, "...if the data supports the universe having had a beginning, why are so many cosmologists seemingly doubtful about the cosmos having begun?"2 In response, Samples offers the assessment of physicist Michael Strauss:
"Everything that we do know about the origin of the our universe seems to indicate it had an actual transcendent cause consistent with the Christian God. Those who want to remove God from the equation must appeal to what is not known, rather than to what is known. I call this an 'atheism of the gaps"...It is ironic that atheists have for years claimed that Christians appeal to god of the gaps to explain things that are not known, but many of the current arguments from atheists against God can only appeal to gaps in our understanding."3
Courage and Godspeed,
1. Kenneth Samples, Christianity Cross-Examined, p. 85.
2. Ibid., p. 87.
Cosmology, the Big Bang, and the Beginning
Physics Professor Michael Strauss on the Origin of the Universe
Outline of the Kalam Cosmological Argument