17 February 2013

A Sceptic Meets Hubble

Science and Technology have come a long way in recent years. Especially in Astronomy. The Hubble Telescope and the Gravity Wave Telescope for example are two of the most impressive instruments ever created by human hands. In fact, these two telescopes are said to be the most precisely tuned instruments ever made. The degree of specificity to which the Gravity Wave Telescope can be adjusted is 1 part in 10 to the 23. Or, the number 1 with 23 zero’s after it. If you’re like me and that kind of number doesn’t quite compute, suffice it to say that these telescopes can be adjusted up to approximately one trillionth of an inch. Beyond comprehension.

But the Creator of the Universe makes the best of our machines look like kids craft day at your local Home Depot. Our God has fine tuned the Universe to a degree of accuracy that is a trillion x trillion x trillion x trillion x trillion x trillion x trillion x trillion times more accurate than the Hubble Telescope or the Gravity Wave Telescope. Yes, that’s a trillion to the eighth power. If this insane level of fine tuning is off just slightly, our earth would not be fit for life.

This fine tuning data is terrible news to the sceptic, especially the Atheist, according to Dr. Hugh Ross, an astrophysicist from Glendora California; Ross explains in a speech given at Azusa Pacific University several years ago, that when the Space Energy Density Term (which is the result of recent scientific data about our universe) was confirmed by both believers and Atheists alike, a few of the Atheist Physicists expressed their disappointment with the following words;

Lawrence Krauss wrote “we are now forced to accept that we live in a universe with this space energy density term. This has profound negative implications.” Of course it’s only negative if you’re an Atheist.

Ross quoted the comments of 2 unnamed Jewish Atheists as was published in the British Journal Nature; “This type of universe requires a degree of fine tuning of the initial conditions that is an apparent conflict with common wisdom.” The common wisdom they’re referring to is Atheism.

A Swiss astrophysicist, also unnamed by Ross, was quoted as to having said; “We are now confronted with a disturbing cosmic coincidence problem.” Again, it’s only a problem if you’re an atheist.

For the first time in History perhaps, it has become impossible for an honest Atheist to deny an intentional creation by a divine hand. But for those of us who are believers, it’s a confirmation of what our faith has already allowed us to know.

Our God has lovingly fine tuned the universe in which our planet resides so that life is possible. And if God can fine tune the vast and complex cosmos to the degree he has, how much more is he capable of fine tuning every aspect of our lives down to the slightest detail. And what little we’re able to see of the universe has a way of speaking to that issue in a unique way.

After getting a glimpse of how our universe may have come together and just how accurate and deliberate its design is, I now view the stars from a different perspective. Astrophysicists tell us that if humanity had been created any earlier, we would not be able to see the stars. And if we had been created later in the timeline of creation the stars would be out of viewing range. Our path of view simply will become too narrow to see a single star as the universe expands over time. Humanity was created at the optimal time to see Gods vast array of lights scattered throughout the sky. And I would not suffer the suggestion of mere coincidence in the parallel existence of humanity and the stars.

I recently went star-gazing on a cold night as inspired by my research for this blog. All I could think about was God’s glory, his beauty and the level of excellence he’s capable of. The stars themselves seemed to evoke such quiet praise. And as I continued to meditate on his greatness, my mind would occasionally jump back to my current struggles, worries and wants. And they seemed petty compared to the expanse of the blanket of stars I was engaging.

As I continued to take in a small glimpse of our own galaxy, my spirit was elevated as if to the stars themselves. And all seemed in perspective, at least for a while. And I couldn’t help but ask; if God can create such a universe with the skill that makes the smartest among us scratch their head, shouldn’t I trust him with my life? And to think that this brilliant God is love at his core, is almost too much to take in. But I gladly took it in.

I walked away from star-gazing that night with something of profound value; that God simply is. And somehow that is enough. And the longer I pondered our God in the stillness that night, the more alive I felt. I knew in my heart that whatever we’re struggling with, it cannot affect us beyond God’s will. And his will is that ultimately we know his faithful love without a hint of doubt. That we bear fruit. That we prosper. Especially in the vein of trust, hope, peace, contentment and gratefulness. And that filled me with an overwhelming joy. My heart was settled. My fear again waned.

As the Psalmist wrote;

“When I consider your heavens,
the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which you have set in place,
what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
human beings that you care for them?” Psalm 8:3-4 NIV

When God wanted to encourage Abraham and give him a vision for the promises he had made, he asked him to go outside and look up at the stars.

He will encourage you with the same stars that Abraham saw. So keep looking up, he made them for you.