What Can Science Tell Us?

What Can Science Tell Us?

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Photo by Evgeni Tcherkasski on Unsplash

Who would have thought that the same force which tears open the grocery bag and tumbles the groceries onto the floor would also be responsible for the high and low tides on our shores? Or the orbit of our moon around the earth and the earth’s orbit around the sun, not to mention all the other planets within our solar system, our galaxy, and the entire universe.

Allan Rex Sandage, one of the greatest observational cosmologists of our time said about science influencing his beliefs, “It is my science that drove me to the conclusion that the world is much more complicated than can be explained by science.”1

In 1977 Nobel physicist Steven Weinberg of the University of Texas wrote concerning discoveries that pointed toward a creator, “The more the universe has become comprehensible through cosmology, he wrote, the more it seems pointless. But now the very science that “killed” God is, in the eyes of believers, restoring faith.”1

Not long ago, I finished ‘The Works of His Hands’ by Sy Garte Ph.D. Good read despite being a theistic evolutionist (a belief that God uses evolution), something I disagree with. Nevertheless, he addressed the Big Bang, “That explosion could be timed to about thirteen billion years ago. The later discovery of cosmic background radiation gave further confirmation to this theory, and alternative theories of a steady-state universe with no beginning, favored by Hoyle and others, were dropped. The idea that there was a single moment of creation is currently established science.”((Garte, Sy. “Origins” The Works of His Hands, Kregel Publications, 2019, p.100))

Many in the world of physics rejected this Big Bang theory because it seemed to confirm how the Bible describes creation. They began calling it a singularity, or a point where all physical laws are no longer independent, space and time are no longer interrelated realities. “Calling it a ‘singularity’ sounds very scientific, but it really just another word for a miracle: a mystery undetermined by the law of our universe and thus inaccessible to scientific investigation.”((Garte, Sy. “Origins” The Works of His Hands, Kregel Publications, 2019, p.100-101))

Charles Townes, Nobel Prize winner in 1964 for Physics, said, “Many have a feeling that somehow intelligence must have been involved in the laws of the universe.”1

Unlike some scientists who see religion and science as opposed, Sandage believes they are complementary. In an article he wrote for Truth Journal, Sandage said science should take religion seriously and religion should respect science. “Science makes explicit the quite incredible natural order, the interconnections at many levels between the laws of physics, the chemical reactions in the biological processes of life, etc.,” he wrote. “But science can answer only a fixed type of question. It is concerned with the what, when, and how. It does not, and indeed cannot, answer within its method (powerful as that method is), why.”2

Donald Johnson wrote a book titled, How to Talk to a Skeptic, [https://www.amazon.com/Talk-Skeptic-Easy-Follow-Conversations/dp/0764211226] in it he explains that some view God’s special revelation (Scripture) as the only way He will communicate with us, but this is counter what scripture teaches us. Johnson wrote, “They envision God’s revelation as a systematic theology textbook being dropped out of the sky and think that this is supposed to be all that God has ever done or will do in the way of communicating and disclosure.” He goes on to say, “According to these passages, people receive some revelation of God simply by living in the world he created. This knowledge of God is available to everyone through creation and our ability to reason. This is usually referred to as ‘general’ or ‘universal’ revelation.”((Johnson, Donald. “What Skeptics Need to Know About God.” How to Talk to a Skeptic, Bethany House Publishers, pgs. 129-130))

The heavens declare the glory of God;

the skies proclaim the work of his hands.

Day after day they pour forth speech;

night after night they reveal knowledge.

They have no speech, they use no words;

no sound is heard from them.

Yet their voice[b] goes out into all the earth,

their words to the ends of the world.

In the heavens God has pitched a tent for the sun. Psalm 19:1-4

In 2005 scientists aimed the Hubble Telescope at a patch of space that would be about 1/10’s the moon’s diameter. They kept Hubble gazing at that spot for one million seconds, or about 12 days. To date, this has been the longest exposure ever taken by a telescope. Why did they do this? Astronomers did not have an accurate measure of the number of stars and galaxies in the observable universe, but after 2005 they had some numbers which could be extrapolated and applied to our universe.

That small patch of sky revealed more than ten thousand galaxies which, when multiplied over the whole observable universe, totaled about 200 billion galaxies. On average, astronomers tell us there are about 200 billion stars in each galaxy which adds up to about 40 billion trillion stars in our observable universe. You can add in another 10 billion trillion stars in unobserved dwarf galaxies for a 50 billion trillion total.((Hugh, Ross. “Why Such a Vast Universe.” Why The Universe Is The Way It Is. Baker Books, 2008, pgs 30-31))

I do not know what I may appear to the world, but to myself, I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the seashore, and diverting myself in now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me. – Isaac Newton

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What Can Science Tell Us? by James W Glazier is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

  1. Begley, Sharon. “Science Finds God.” Washington Post, 1988. https://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/newsweek/science_of_god/scienceofgod.htm. 15 February 2022. [] [] []
  2. Staff. “Allan Rex Sandage” N.D. https://biography.yourdictionary.com/allan-rex-sandage. 15 February 2022 []
God’s Not Dead

God’s Not Dead

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Above image by Arek Socha from Pixabay

Did you see the movie God’s Not Dead? I watched God’s Not Dead several years ago when it first came out. I returned a few days later to watch it a second time with my son and several of his friends. This time I took notes, as well as anyone can take notes in a dark theater.

If you have watched this movie or plan on watching it, then take a moment and read this. It will help explain some of the arguments used by both the atheist, Professor Radisson, and the Christian student, Josh Wheaton. This review (if you can call it that) is far from exhaustive in covering the logical fallacies and apologetic arguments, but it may be useful for the layman.

The Most Intelligent People are Atheists

The first argument Professor Radisson used when he walked into his philosophy class was to point to a list of famous, intelligent, if not brilliant, people who were all atheists. This is a logical fallacy called an appeal to authority. If you come up with a list of famous, educated, or influential people who support your cause, your cause must be essential and intellectually just.

Every year in politics, you see candidates endorsed by famous actors or actresses. They do this because the Hollywood spotlight holds a position of influence over us. If a famous actor or actress supports someone, more people will vote for that individual. Both the Republicans and the Democrats use a Hollywood face or well-known sports figure to promote their campaign. The fact that both sides take part in this should tell you something. It works.

Christians could also come up with a list of brilliant minds that believed in God or the Christian worldview. In popular culture, we have Tyler Perry, Ryan Gosling, Patricia Heaton, Chris Pratt, Denzel Washington, Mel Gibson, Martin Sheen, Angela Bassett, to name a few in the Hollywood circles. They all believe in God or profess to be Christians. We could also list those famous for their towering intellect. Copernicus, Kepler, Galileo, Pascal, Newton, and Mendel, to name a few.

Appealing to authority can be persuasive, but it does not make something true. Even if everyone I listed above thought that the world was flat, it would not be true. And when Professor Radisson shows off a list of brilliant and famous people that were, or are, atheists, it does not make atheism true any more than the lists I offered make Christianity true.

The prompting is that only intelligent people are atheists, but you can see that is not the case. The suggestion is that science trumps faith, and that science and faith are at odds. Or more specifically, that knowledge and faith are on opposite ends of each other. Many atheists and even some Christians believe the less knowledge you have, the more faith you need. Please give it some thought. This is obviously not true; the opposite of faith is unbelief, not knowledge, and the opposite of knowledge is not faith, but ignorance. Throughout history and today, brilliant minds have excellent reasons and evidence for their faith.

Atheists do not have the market on knowledge, reason, and science. In my readings on apologetics, I have found tremendous support for my faith in Christ. As my knowledge has increased, so has my faith/confidence. As Josh researched the Christian worldview, no doubt his faith also increased.

I want to address two apologetic arguments Josh Wheaton used in the movie. This will help those watching the film for the first time understand the philosophy behind them. It is also important for every Christian to be familiar with them because they commonly come up when talking to skeptics or atheists.

The First Cause

The first argument Josh brought up was the Big Bang Theory.

In 1929, Edwin Hubble noticed what he called a ‘red shift’ in the color of very distant galaxies. This turned out to mean that the galaxies were moving away; in other words, the universe was expanding. Why is this significant? If we dial back time a thousand years, the universe would be smaller than it is today. If we were to go back a million years, it would be smaller still. So we could go back to the beginning and find the universe compressed into a single point that science calls a singularity. What caused this singularity? We call that God. As Greg Koukl puts it, to have a Big Bang, you must have a Big Banger.

Just a few years later, Albert Einstein came to peer through the telescope at the Wilson Observatory to confirm, at least in his own mind, the findings of Hubble. Since then, science has continued to confirm this, and the Big Bang Theory is widely accepted in the scientific community. 

I know many Christians that have been uncomfortable with this, but it plays into the hand of those who believe in God. Simply put, if the universe had a beginning, it must have been created. For centuries, scientists believed that the universe had always existed, but Genesis says, “In the beginning God created…”

One form of the cosmological argument is called the Kalam Cosmological Argument, and essentially it states the following premises and conclusion:

1. Whatever begins to exist has a cause.

2. The universe began to exist.

3. Therefore, the universe has a cause.

Someone might ask, “Then who caused God?” but God is an uncaused, eternal being. He stands outside of his creation, much like the author of a book stands outside of his novel. Time is inexorably tied to our universe, and God stands outside it. He is not bound by his creation any more than Thomas Kinkade is bound to live in one of his idyllic country cottage paintings.

Professor Hugh Ross, who has written several books on cosmology and lectured at over 300 campuses, wrote, “Consider the way parents prepare their children to explore and relate to the world and the rest of humanity. Step-by-step, as the little one matures, father and mother allow the world of exploration and relationships to expand. Likewise, according to the Bible, God will allow his children to move beyond their smallish playground (planet earth) into the expansive realm (the new creation) he always intended for them to experience and enjoy.”((Ross, Hugh. “Why Such a Lonely Universe.” Why The Universe Is The Way It Is, Baker Books, 2008, p.78))

Problem of Evil

Another argument Josh addressed is the problem of evil. The argument goes something like this: how can an all-powerful, all-loving, all-knowing God allow evil? David Hume put it this way, “Is he willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is impotent. Is he able but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Whence then is evil?”

Let me ask you, what is your purpose in life? If you hold a Christian worldview, you must understand that your purpose in life is not your happiness but to commune with God. This life does not end with our last breath but spills over and opens up a door to an eternal ocean of God’s presence and love.

The old woman in the nursing home toward the end of God’s Not Dead spells it out nicely when she says to her son, “Sometimes the devil allows people to live a life free of trouble, because he doesn’t want them turning to God.”1 Some of you may have the same experience I do when I say the times I have been the most active in prayer are when I have been going through difficulty. No doubt many of you have experienced the same thing. How many have cried out to God when encountering a sudden life-threatening experience? In times of difficulty, most everyone recognizes we turn toward God, but sometimes the answer is no, and we suffer great pain or loss. For many of us, this brings us closer to God, and a greater understanding of the purpose to our life.

Timothy Keller wrote, “For many years, after each of the morning and evening Sunday services, I remained in the auditorium for another hour to field questions. Hundreds of people stayed for the give-and-take discussions. One of the most frequent statements I heard was, ‘Every person has the right to define right and wrong for himself or herself.’ I always responded to the speakers by asking, ‘Is there anyone in the world right now doing things you believe they should stop doing no matter what they personally believe about the correctness of their behavior?’ They would invariably say, ‘Yes, of course.'”2

We are all free to do good, and we are all free to do evil. The same freedom allows us to do one or the other, but we could not measure evil without good. Without God, evil is just a behavior that some don’t enjoy, and it becomes a subjective feeling. 

Timothy Keller pointed out that without a grounding objective morality we get from God, then evil is just a point of view. If we each decide what is right and wrong, then evil is just a matter of opinion. 

Volumes have been written on the problem of evil, and it is one Christians should be familiar with because it can be one of the most challenging questions to answer when the suffering does not offer any rhyme or reason. 

See God’s Not Dead if you have not seen it. I would have enjoyed more classroom debate and apologetic arguments in greater detail, more character development. Still, it has raised awareness in Christians who might otherwise never have considered intellectual and philosophical arguments for their belief in Christ. 

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God’s Not Dead by James W Glazier is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

  1. God’s Not Dead. Dir. Harold Cronk, Perf. Kevin Sorbo, Shane Harper. Pure Flix Entertainment, 2014. Film []
  2. Keller, Timothy. The Reason for God. New York: Penguin Group, 2008. Print. []
Who Made Chase?

Who Made Chase?

Reading Time: 3 minutes

The other day I was having lunch with a friend and her 4th-grade son named Chase. In all regards, he is like any other 4th grader you might come across, but he asked me a question that astounded me. We talked about God, and I don’t remember the specifics of the conversation, but he started questioning the claim that God created everything. My phrasing, not his. Then he asked, “If God created everything, who created God?” Wow, how many 4th graders do you know even think about that question and can even articulate it? I have a count of one.

My reply was less than satisfying because some of the concepts are hard to wrap your head around, and I did not explain them well. I should have given him more credit and stopped reminding myself he was only a 4th grader. He certainly is thinking about concepts that most adults don’t even reflect on. As it was, I think I just muddied the waters, but I felt better after we played hangman and I won. Of course, I was adding eyeballs, eyelashes, and any other body part I could think of to continue guessing the letters.

I tried to explain to him; it is really the wrong question. When someone asks who created God, they are assuming that God was created. Let’s face it if some other being made God, then the obvious follow-up is who created that God? And then, who created the God that created God? So on and so on. You have an impossible infinite regress. Time cannot go back forever without end, or we would never have reached this moment in time.

Something, I will call it God, must have started the clock. Something that is outside of the universe and is not in any way dependent on it. They have an argument for this, and it is called the Kalam Cosmological Argument, which actually has its roots in Islam.

  1. Whatever begins to exist has a cause.
  2. The universe began to exist.
  3. Therefore, the universe has a cause outside of itself.

Look at premise 1 for a moment. We have two kinds of things that exist, things that exist necessarily and things that have a cause outside of themselves. Numbers are an example of something that exists necessarily. Many mathematicians think numbers exist fundamentally, and it is impossible for them not to exist. Can you imagine a reality that does not have numbers? I can’t. That leaves things that exist due to other things that exist. In other words, things exist because of other things. For example, puppies, turtles, trees, rocks, mountains, the moon, sun, and stars all exist because of something else. In premise 1 above, God falls into the category of existing necessarily.

Concerning premise 2 the scientific community overwhelmingly agrees that the universe began to exist. Most call that beginning the Big Bang. Space, time, matter, and energy all started when the universe began because they are one in the same.

This argument has two premises that lead to a logical conclusion. If the premises are true, then a logical and sound conclusion follow. Once we conclude that the universe was caused by something we can look more closely at what that cause could be. I call that cause God.

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Genesis 1:1

Creative Commons License
Who Made Chase? by James W Glazier is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

 

Sources:

Craig, William Lane. Reasonable Faith. Wheaton: Crossway, 2008, Print

D’Souza, Dinesh. What’s So Great About Christianity. Carol Stream: Tyndale House, 2007. Print.

Ell, Douglas. Counting to God. Attitude Media, 2014, Print

Craig, William, L. On Guard. Colorado Springs: David C. Cook Publishing, 2010. Print.

What if…?

What if…?

Reading Time: 5 minutes

Image by Genty from Pixabay

I came across an article on space.com that makes three common errors skeptics and atheists may make when you have conversations about the existence of God. The first is we can’t trust our own judgment because we have been wired for survival, not necessarily to have an accurate understanding of reality. The second is ‘what if…’ stories. Some may suggest alternative options or reasons for something by asking you, “What if this or that was true?” Most of these ‘what if’ questions have no foundation in scientific facts. The third mistake is a misunderstanding of how Christians view God, an eternal, all-powerful being who created not only space and matter but time itself. They often ask, “If God made the universe, then who made God?” This just pushes back the initial cause of the universe, when we as Christians view God as the Alpha and Omega. Let’s look at each one briefly. 

The first is we can’t trust our intellect, our judgment, or instincts. In an article on cosmology or the beginnings of the universe, Mike Wall wrote, “Our universe could have popped into existence 13.7 billion years ago without any divine help whatsoever, researchers say…That may run counter to our instincts, which recoil at the thought of something coming from nothing. But we shouldn’t necessarily trust our instincts, for they were honed to help us survive on the African savannah 150,000 years ago, not understand the inner workings of the universe. Instead, scientists say, we should trust the laws of physics.”1

Wall does not recognize the inherent contradiction in what he suggested. We can’t trust our instincts or our understanding of how things work, but we should trust the laws of physics? I would ask, how did we come to understand the laws of physics? By our instincts, our senses, and our reason. That in turn, enables us to draw natural conclusions on how the world works, which includes physics. How is it we can’t trust our senses and reason, but we can trust physics, which we have come to understand via our senses and reason? Yes, that confuses me too. 

In other words, don’t believe everything you read, but you should read and believe this… It is a self-defeating statement. 

We function every day having to trust what we have learned from the world around us. Don’t smoke near gasoline. Don’t stand in the middle of a busy highway. Sharp knives can cut you, loaded guns can kill you, and mullet haircuts make you look stupid. Ok, maybe the last one is subjective, but you get my drift. Not only do we trust our instincts and senses, but we also have to function daily, relying on them, that is if you want to survive. Funny how survival and a proper understanding of reality go hand in hand.  

Further on in the article, the ‘what if’ stories come into play, which is a 2nd error Christians let others get away with. You have heard them. The skeptic or atheist spins a tail and asks you to consider a view that has no foundation in reality. They come in several forms, and when you pay attention, you will begin to spot them in a conversation or article. Here are a few that will probably sound familiar. 

  • What if…
  • You could say…
  • Imagine if…
  • It could be… and if that is true…
  • If you could say… then you might…

The above ‘what if’ claims are hollow and do not offer any hard evidence or science to back them up. Frankly, they are simply a waste of time because we can ‘what if’ each other all day and make zero progress in an intelligent and thoughtful discussion. See if you can recognize any in the paragraph from the article below.

“If you would just, in this room, just twist time and space the right way, you might create an entirely new universe.”1

Or how about this one from the same article. “So it could be that this universe is merely the science fair project of a kid in another universe,” Shostak added. “I don’t know how that affects your theological leanings, but it is something to consider.”1

They are easy to spot when you know what to look for. When someone spins a ‘what if’ tail or story, you should have a question for them. And the evidence for that is?  How did you come to that conclusion?  Can you share with me the research that supports that suggestion? What if stories are just that, stories. Anyone can spin a story, and some can spin a tale that sounds thoughtful and reasonable but is not backed by any science or facts. 

Finally, Wall addresses the question ‘If God made the universe, then who made God?’ This question shows he clearly doesn’t understand what we mean when we say God. He writes, “The question, then, is, ‘Why are there laws of physics?’ And you could say, Well, that required a divine creator, who created these laws of physics and the spark that led from the laws of physics to these universes, maybe more than one. But that answer just continues to kick the can down the road, because you still need to explain where the divine creator came from. The process leads to a never-ending chain that always leaves you short of the ultimate answer…”1

Has God been created? Is that what scripture teaches? Not at all. Isaiah 40:28, Psalm 90:2, Hebrews 3:4, and Hebrews 13:8 are just a few examples. God has always existed, and He began creation (space, time, matter). Science supports a beginning moment for all creation. If time did not have a beginning, then we could never have reached this moment in time. 

William Lane Craig explains it this way, “When we say that God is infinite, we mean, for example, that God is uncaused: he doesn’t depend on anyone or anything for his existence. Rather everything else depends on him. He is utterly distinct from his creation: we are creatures; he is Creator. We also mean that God is eternal: he never began to exist and will never cease to exist…as the evidence suggests, time and space began to exist in the Big Bang, then God transcends time and space in the sense that he existed without time and space and then brought them into being at the moment to creation.”2

Melissa Travis in her book ‘Science and the Mind of the Maker‘ points out that a Muslim philosopher Al-Ghazali was one of the first to lean against the idea of an eternal universe. Al-Ghazali recognized that many of his contemporaries began to adopt a Greek or Aristotelian view that the universe always existed, which undermined the need of a creator.3

In his book ‘On Guard‘ William Lane Craig formulated this syllogism. 

  1. Everything that begins to exist has a cause outside of its self.
  2. The universe began to exist. 
  3. Therefore the universe has a cause outside of its self.4

We call that cause God, who has no cause. When someone asks who caused God, they assume He has a beginning; we know He does not. 

The Christian faith is on solid ground. Those willing to do the homework will not only find historical grounds for their faith, but scientific reasons also. 


What if… by James Glazier is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

  1. Wall, Mike. “The Big Bang Didn’t Need God.” Space, space.com, 24 June 2012, https://www.space.com/16281-big-bang-god-intervention-science.html [] [] [] []
  2. Craig, William Lane. “How to Know God as a Personal Reality in your Life” On Guard For Students, Colorado Springs, David C. Cook, 2015, pg. 275 []
  3. Travis, Melissa. “The Origin and Structure of the Cosmos: Finite and Finely Tuned” Science and the Mind of the Maker, Harvest House Publishers, 2018, pgs 53-57 []
  4. Craig, William Lane. “Why Does Anything At All Exist” On Guard For Students, Colorado Springs, David C. Cook, 2015, pg. 33 []
If God created the universe, who created God?

If God created the universe, who created God?

Reading Time: 5 minutes

Above image by Raphael from Pixabay

One of the men attending our early Sunday morning apologetic class, Anthony, shared with me that someone actually asked him this specific question.

We started watching the six week Greg Koukl DVD series on Tactics. At the end of the 2nd session, I made eight statements, or claims, that I wanted those attending to think about. The second one on my list was, “If God created the universe, who created God?” So when Anthony heard that one, it reminded him of someone asking him that question.

This question has been around for a long time. What some of you may find interesting is that the response, at least in part, comes from Muslim philosophers. It is called the Kalam Cosmological Argument. I know it sounds like a mouthful and would not come up when you’re fishing with your buddies, but let me explain.

It is a philosophical argument for the existence of God, which has become popular with Christian apologists in the last 40 years or so. Part of its popularity has to do with the Big Bang theory, which dovetails perfectly with this philosophical argument. The Kalam Cosmological Argument comes in many forms, but a nut shell, goes like this:
1. Everything that begins to exist has a cause outside of itself.
2. The universe began to exist.
3. Therefore, the universe has a cause outside of itself.
What do we call that cause? God.

If you were to look at a tree in your yard, you could start tracing its cause back, starting with the tree that dropped the seed which sprouted the one in your yard. Then back to the tree that seeded the one which seeded the first. Then to the one that seeded that one, and the next, and the next…you get the idea. Your tree, and everything else that begins to exist, traces its cause to something outside of itself. Nothing that has a beginning can be the cause of its own existence.

Think about it. Not only trees, but cars, dogs, books, flowers, the sand on the beach, and the very earth we stand on.

Genesis 1:1 Over the centuries, most monotheistic religions believed that God was the cause of the universe.

Over time, many began to believe that God was unnecessary for the universe because the universe was static, it always existed. If that was true, then there was no need for God. He could not have created something that was always there. Even Einstein believed the universe always existed and in the process of working out the Theory of General Relativity, his equation reflected the view of a static, eternal universe. But Einstein was wrong.

Einstein was uncomfortable with the thought of an expanding universe. Obviously, if it is expanding, as we move backward in time the universe is smaller. The further back in time we move, the smaller the universe, until we have a point from which we say the Big Bang emerged. This theory is widely accepted among the scientific community today. Not only is it expanding, but the further out we study distant galaxies, we find they are moving away faster than the ones closer to our own Milky Way.

There are other indications to the universe having a beginning. The example of our own sun points out that as time passes, the fuel declines. Eventually, (several billion years from now), our sun will burn up the supply of hydrogen and swell to a red giant. So large in fact, that the orbit of the earth will intercept the sun. 1

If our universe had always existed, then we would have run out of usable energy long ago. Our own sun could not have have been burning forever. D’Souza put it this way, “…if the universe can be compared to a clock, the fact that the clock is continually running down leads to the conclusion that there was a time when the clock was fully wound up. The universe originated with its full supply of energy, and that is the fund that has been dissipating ever since.”2

So the universe began to exist, and we consider the cause God. So the question remains, who created God? If another super being created God, then who created the super being that created God? And who created that being, and on we go, spiraling backward into an infinite number of causes.

That does not work, because if time always existed we would never have reached today. High Ross in his book, Why The Universe Is The Way It Is wrote, “…the universe was brought into existence by a causal Agent with the capacity to operate before, beyond, unlimited by, and transcendent to all cosmic matter, energy, space, and time.”3

In other words, God created time, space, and matter. He is not limited to his creation. He is a transcendent uncreated being. He has no creator and has no need of one, because He created time as we know it. A hard concept to wrap your mind around, but that is the answer to the question, “Who created God?” No one. He never began to exist, unlike our universe.

Scripture confirms this belief. Deuteronomy 33:27 talks of God being eternal. Job 36:26 says his years can’t be discovered. Psalm 103:17 says He is everlasting to everlasting. John 1:1-3 says that all things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made. There are other verses in Scripture that attribute God for having made all that exists and that He is eternal.

Ross also wrote, “Such complete freedom to compress or expand time is only possible for a Being who is completely free to operate beyond, or transcendent to time.”4

Finally, in his book Surprised By Meaning, Alister E. McGrath explained how the Christian World view fits nicely to our current observations of the natural world. Christians have never had to adjust to a created universe, or a uncreated Being. “Yet it must be emphasized that Christian theology has never seen itself as charged with the task of inventing an explanation for these observations; rather, they fit within, and resonate with, an existing way of thinking, which proves capable of satisfactorily incorporating such observations.”5

 

 

Sources:
1. “What Will Happen to Earth When the Sun Dies?” livescience.com. Live Science, 1 December 2010. Web. 18 August 2015
2. D’Souza, Dinesh. What’s So Great About Christianity. Carol Stream: Tyndale House, 2007. Print.
3. Ross, Hugh. Why The Universe Is The Way It Is. Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 2008.
4. Ibid.
5. McGrath, Alister E. Surprised by Meaning. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2011.

 

 

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If God created the universe, who created God? by James Glazier is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at http://www.dev.christianapologetics.blog/.

A book review – The Physics of Heaven

A book review – The Physics of Heaven

Reading Time: 9 minutes

I was asked, by someone at my church, to read ‘The Physics of Heaven’ by Judy Franklin and Ellyn Davis. Judy Franklin is on staff at Bethel Church in Redding and Ellyn Davis is a published home school author and researcher of quantum mysticism. According to the Senior Associate Leader at Bethel Church, Kris Vallotton, “This book is a foretaste of things to come.”

I found it disturbing on multiple levels. It embraces New Age mysticism and encourages Christians to explore the truths of other religions and New Age beliefs. To quote Johathan Welton, “I have found throughout Scripture at least 75 examples of things that the New Age has counterfeited, such as having a spirit guide, trances, meditation, auras, power objects, clairvoyances, clairaudience, and more.” Johathan Welton, one of the contributors to this book, is a teacher, author, and seer (quoting his web site) with his own supernatural Bible school.

As I read The ‘Physics of Heaven’ I encountered logical fallacies that would frustrate Spock, leaps of reason that looked more like a startled gazelle, and stretches of truth that would make a giraffe envious. I could not read more than a page or two without noting something I found questionable and wanted to investigate. I am a copious note taker when I read a book and when I come across something questionable, I research it for validity. I had so many notes in the first few chapters that it would have taken me weeks to research it. I noted that Franklin and Davis do not have a single citation in their book The Physics of Heaven; that in itself should be a red flag to anyone reading this book.

I noted over 50 details or questionable references, within this book, I wanted to look up and research for truth. All of them were examples that were intended to support their New Age views, insights, and prophetic visions. But due to my personal time constraints and desire to spend my energy elsewhere, I will just share three examples out of this book and what I found.

One example is the authors sharing the invention of Dr. Royal Rife, which came after a chapter by Beni Johnson where she explores and discusses sounds (Pentecost wind) and vibrations that can bring us to new realms.

Dr. Royal Rife invented a machine, in the 1930’s, which used currents and frequencies to cure a wide range of diseases, including cancer. Franklin and Davis wrote, “The total recovery rate using Rife’s technology was 100%.” 1 When I hear or read about claims like this I can’t help but ask myself, why are we not using this cure today if it was so successful? Well, the truth is, Dr. Rife’s claims could not be duplicated and he was discredited by the medical profession in the 1950’s. 2 So his use of vibrations, sounds, and frequencies to cure cancer was discredited and unsubstantiated. Why the authors would use an example so easily refuted raises a host of other questions.

I also came across an article in the Seattle Times, “Rife machines are named after inventor Royal Rife, who in the 1930s created a device that purportedly destroyed disease with radio frequencies. There is no credible scientific evidence to substantiate that Rife devices work, according to the National Institutes of Health.” 3 The Times went on to report these supposed miracle machines are popular in the underground market where individuals without any kind of medical license sell to unsuspecting individual’s who are desperate for healing.

Now, you may be a Bethel fan or supporter. I’ve know several over the years who have attended the church or the classes they offer in supernatural ministry and worship, who have nothing but good to say about Bethel Redding. These are people I trust, respect and admire. I myself have never attended any of their services, nor have I even listened to a single sermon from Bill Johnson. I have viewed some worship services and some guest speakers of Bethel on You Tube, and read some blogs or online columns about the church, but that is the extent of my Bethel exposure. Maybe I was asked to read this book because I had no opinion of Bethel, other than being somewhat skeptical.

I have to say after reading this book, and the message it represents, I do have some concerns when Bill Johnson, Beni Johnson, and other Bethel staff contribute to or endorse this book.

Another example is their mention of spontaneous healings in the presence of dolphins. They then mention the Upledger Foundation and their study to “…investigate the effects of providing CranioSacral Therapy to patients while in the presence of dolphins.” So I first looked up the Upledger Foundation and then CranioSacral Therapy.

The Upledger Foundation mission statement is to “…perpetuate the therapeutic treatment and education of CranioSacral Therapy.” 4 They offer online courses with over 100 certified instructors in CranioSacral Therapy, and have clinics all over the United States. Dr. John E. Upledger passed away recently, but his son, John M. has picked up the banner and is now heading the institution.

So, the Upledger Foundation promotes CranioSacral Therapy, no surprise since that is how they make their income. The next question, what is CranioSacral Therapy? The Upledger Foundation says, “CranioSacral Therapy (CST) is a gentle, hands-on approach that releases tensions deep in the body to relieve pain and dysfunction and improve whole-body health and performance.” 5 When they say gentle they are talking about the weight of a nickel, only a few grams of pressure.

CranioSacral therapy is simply a holistic treatment or alternative medicine, as some of the supporting articles call it. It involves manipulation of the skull bones and the sacrum, (I had to look that one up too) which is a triangular bone at the base of the spine consisting of several vertebrae, which become fused after the age of 18.

SacrumPelvis

Craniosacral therapists say they can detect a certain rhythm in the cranium and sacrum spinal fluid which is required for good health. If this rhythm is out of balance a trained CST therapist can alter the flow to the desired rhythm and improve over all health and well being of the patients being treated. “The rhythm is measured by the therapist’s hands. Any needed or effected changes in rhythm are also detected only by the therapist’s hands. No instrument is used to measure the rhythm or its changes, hence no systematic objective measurement of healthy versus unhealthy rhythms exists.” 6 Without any viable scientific measurement, I would be very wary of this alternative medicine.

Another disturbing find was what Upledger, in his own book, ‘CranioSacral Therapy:Touchstone of natural Healing, wrote, “By connecting deeply with a patient while doing CranioSacral Therapy, it was possible in most cases to solicit contact with the patient’s Inner Physician. It also became clear that the Inner Physician could take any form the patient could imagine —an image, a voice or a feeling. Usually once the image of the Inner Physician appeared, it was ready to dialog with me and answer questions about the underlying causes of the patient’s health problems and what can be done to resolve them. It also became clear that when the conversation with the Inner Physician was authentic, the craniosacral system went into a holding pattern.” 7

Every step is subjectively based. The need for the treatment is determined by the CST, the changes in the rhythms are determined by the CST, and the subsequent improvement of the rhythm is determined by the CST. Hard to believe that Judy Franklin and Ellyn Davis reference this to support their views on healing energy and vibrational frequencies.

Throughout The Physics of Heaven are examples of legitimate, medically, and scientific proven examples of corrective treatments, surgery, and care for the health and well being of individuals. Inserted among them are other more dubious examples that have as much to do with proven science as crop circles prove the existence of aliens. Oh yes, they do mention crop circles in The Physics of Heaven.

My last example is their reference of magnets and tuning forks to promote healing. “There are many well established uses of energy fields in the diagnosis and treatment of disease. Some of these include: magnetic resonance imaging, laser eye correction surgery, cardiac pacemakers, radiation therapy, and UV light therapies for psoriasis and seasonal affective disorder. There are also a few less-researched therapies that use energy fields such as music therapy, using magnets to increase blood flow, and the use of tuning forks to produce healing sound frequencies.” 8

Less-researched? That’s an interesting way to put it. How about, just researched enough for those in the medical field with any credibility to realize it’s snake oil.

Concerning the use of magnets in the medical profession, Steven Novella from Science Based medicine puts it this way, “The history of health claims for magnets goes back as far as knowledge of magnetism itself. In the last decade there appears to have been an upsurge in this old scam – a plethora of products promising to treat arthritis, improve healing, or just give extra energy by placing a magnet over the target area. The magnets used are typically very weak and have a field that barely penetrates the skin, let alone reaching down to the joints or the area of pain.” 9

Over the years magnets and magnet devices such as bands, bracelets, necklaces, etc have been promoted and sold as pain reducing and cancer curing gimicks. “The FDA has prosecuted a number of cases involving magnetic devices promoted for the relief of pain. Devices involved in these cases include a tiny, permanent magnet on an adhesive bandages called Acu-Dot, the Inductoscope; magnetic bracelets alleged to provide a longer and more active life, relieve arthritis, and inhibit bacterial growth; and the Magnetic Ray Belt. There is no scientific evidence that permanent magnets have a beneficial effect upon any form of cancer or that they will relive pain beyond a placebo effect.” 10

The use of tuning forks was another “less-researched” therapy. According to Michele Averard and Nestor Kornblum, “The stem of the activated fork can be placed on the bones and articulations to restore movement and flexibility, and aid the development of connective tissue. They stimulate the flow of lymph and blood to the area of application thereby speeding up the healing process, and promote deep relaxation and the elimination of built up stress and toxins from the joints.” 11

7 chakraswebThere are no scientific studies that show, “Unhealthy vibrations in the body of a living thing can be brought into a healthy vibratory state by being influenced by objects emanating healthy vibrations. (Again, there is no scientific evidence for this belief; it is pure metaphysical fantasy).” 12 In reality the tuning forks use this non-existant, universal life force within us all that can become out of balance or off frequency. So alternative healers or holistic therapists use tuning forks to correct the organ or chakra (energy points or channels of life force) that is out of balance or harmony with the earth’s frequency.

Tristin Hopper from How Stuff Works puts it this way, “a patient lies motionless on a table while a healer passes vibrating tuning forks over their body — the idea being that the vibrations improve mental clarity and physical energy. There’s no scientific evidence for this, but hanging out in a room filled with gently-humming tuning forks could put anyone in a good mood.” 13 Swimming with dolphins while my wife very gently massages my craniosacral would also put me in a good mood.

I have only scratched the surface here. There is so much more questionable material in this book that I have not even mentioned. If anyone reads this, put on your thinking cap, your skeptic cape, and don’t hesitate to ask, ‘How did you come to that conclusion?’

I will end this with another quote from Helen Davis who was responding to one of her many duped fans on her blog. This woman was commenting on UFO’s, Extra Terrestrials, and the fallen ones of Genesis 6 and how both God and Satan are concerned with DNA. Helen replied, “Yes, I have also studied the Nephalim and the different beliefs that many of the human bloodlines are now “infected” with non-human DNA and that has caused a genetic modification and that these non-human influences have an agenda to control humankind and all of earth’s resources. Scripture doesn’t clearly speak of such thing, but extraBiblical texts like the Book of Enoch do.” 14

If this book is a foretaste of things to come and Christian belief, I can understand why scripture says in Matthew 24:24 “For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.”

 

Sources:
1. Franklin, Judy. Davis Ellyn. “The Physics of Heaven” Crossville: Double Portion Publishing, 2012 Print.
2. (1994), Questionable methods of cancer management: Electronic devices. CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians, 44: 115–127. doi: 10.3322/canjclin.44.2.115
3. Willmsen, Christine. Berens, Michael J. “Pair indicted on fraud charges in medical-device probe.” The Seattle Times [Seattle] Dec. 2007, nwsource.com Web. 22 Dec. 2014.
4. Upledger, John “Who We Are.” Upledger Foundation. Upledger.com, 2011. Web. 22 Dec. 2014.
5. Ibid
6. Carroll, Robert T. “Craniosacral Therapy” Skeptic’s Dictionary. Skepdic.com, 21 Jan. 2014. Web. 23 Dec. 2014
7. Upledger, John E. “CranoSacral Therapy: Touchstone of Natural Healing” Berkely: North Atlantic Books, 1999. Print.
8. Franklin, Judy. Davis Ellyn. “The Physics of Heaven” Crossville: Double Portion Publishing, 2012 Print.
9. Novella, Steven. “Magnetic Healing Through the Ages” Neurologica Blog. Theness.com, 14 June 2010. Web. 23 Dec. 2014
10. “Questionable Methods of Cancer Management: Electronic Devices” Cancer Journal for Clinicians Volume 44. Issue 2 1994:44:115-127 Wiley Online Library Web. 21 Dec. 2014
11. Averard, Michele. Kornblum,Nestor. “Tuning Forks and Harmonics for Health” Harmonic Sounds. Globalsoundhealing.net, 2012. Web. 22 Dec. 2014
12. Carroll, Robert T. “Vibrational medicine” Skeptic’s Dictionary. Skepdic.com, 21 Jan. 2014. Web. 23 Dec. 2014
13. Hopper, Tristin, “Non-musical Uses for Tuning Forks” How Stuff Works, howstuffworks.com, 1 March 2011. Web. 23 Dec. 2014
14. Davis, Ellyn. “Chapter 2: Extracting the Precious From the Worthless” Heaven’s Physics, heavenssphysics.com 2012. Web. 19 Dec. 2014

 

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A book review – The Physics of Heaven by James Glazier is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at http://www.dev.christianapologetics.blog.

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