Neil Shenvi - Apologetics

III. Evidence for God from science

B. The beginning of the universe

Second, the vast majority of modern astronomers now believe that the universe is not eternal; instead, they believe it had a beginning about 14.3 billion years ago in an event known as the Big Bang. What most people aren't aware of was that this model was resisted for decades because it contradicted the prevalent belief of physicists that the universe was eternal (which went back at least as far as the ancient Greeks).

Indeed, as recently as 1989, John Maddox the editor of Nature magazine -one of the most prestigious scientific journals in the world- wrote that the Big Bang is "philosophically unacceptable" and that "Creationists and those of similar persuasions seeking support for their opinions have ample justification in the doctrine of the Big Bang" ["Down With the Big Bang", Nature, 340 (1989)]. And you can see why the Big Bang was problematic to naturalists. If the universe was eternal, then there was no need for it to have a cause. But if the universe began to exist, wouldn't something or someone have to have caused it to come into being? And if the all of time, space, matter and energy came into being at the Big Bang, then wouldn't the cause of the Big Bang have to be immaterial, outside of time, and outside of Nature? While this observation doesn't prove that the cause of the universe had to be God, it certainly seems to be suggestive.

Top: Science and religion

Back: Mathematics

Next: Fine-Tuning

If anyone reading this essay has questions about it or about Christianity in general, feel free to e-mail me at Neil -AT- I also highly recommend the book The Reason for God by Tim Keller. It is phenomenal. Free sermons treating many of the topics covered by this book can be found here.

Back to home Back to Essays