by Allen Hainline
It is quite common in Internet circles to attack the intelligence and even sometimes the integrity of anyone believing in creation. An unfortunate strategy among some leading atheists is to group all opposition to solely naturalistic origins theories into one category, perhaps the one they think can most easily be refuted – young earth creationism. They like to ignore that God can also use processes and that many scholars (both now and in the early church) don’t think that the Bible teaches the age of the universe. Clearly some creationist claims are mistaken but is it ridiculous to hold to any belief in creation at all?
In evaluating this question, first consider how creation is defined according to the Oxford dictionary: “The action or process of bringing something into existence.”
By this definition, everyone should agree that the following were created:
- Our universe
- All species
Even atheists agree that none of these are eternally existent. Atheism entails though that there has been no intervention by a supernatural Creator in the origin of these entities and that is the notion of creation to which they object.
Let’s consider the most foundational type of creation that atheists must deny – the creation of the universe. The second definition in the Oxford dictionary actually highlights this particular aspect by defining creation as “the bringing into existence of the universe, especially when regarded as an act of God.” However, it is a well-established scientific fact that our universe has a finite age and most scientists agree that its early history is characterized by an expansion out of an incredibly dense and tiny state in what is now known as the Big Bang. So our universe was created! But does that necessarily mean there was a Creator?
Nobel prize winners who have contributed to the confirmation of the Big Bang have noted how it appears quite similar to a creation event:
“The best data we have are exactly what I would have predicted, had I nothing to go on but the five Books of Moses, the Psalms, the Bible as a whole.“ Arno Penzias
“There is no doubt that a parallel exists between the Big Bang as an event and the Christian notion of creation from nothing.” George Smoot
Edwin Hubble’s successor, long-time atheist Allan Sandage, became a Christian late in life and notes that “it was my science that drove me to the conclusion that the world is much more complicated than can be explained by science… It is only through the supernatural that I can understand the mystery of existence.” Sandage also notes that “Astronomical observations have also suggested that this creation event, signaled by the expansion of the Universe, has happened only once. The expansion will continue forever, the Universe will not collapse upon itself, and therefore this type of creation will not happen again…
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