Sandage Test Affirms Biblical Creation Model and Constant Laws of Physics

By Dr. Hugh Ross

More than fifty years ago, astronomer Allan Sandage proposed an assumption-free test for establishing which model for the creation and history of the universe is correct. The test can also determine the nature of dark energy, potentially uncover yet more evidence for supernatural, super-intelligent design, and establish an indisputable age for the universe. At the time Sandage suggested his test, instruments did not exist to perform it. Today, they do and the next generation of telescopes—scheduled to be operational within the next six to eleven years—will be able to perform the test within years rather than decades. As an added bonus, the Sandage test measurements have already demonstrated to a much greater degree that the biblical prediction of constant laws of physics is correct.

Allan Sandage, often described as the most influential astronomer of the last half-century, is credited with founding the discipline of observational cosmology. As Edwin Hubble’s star student, he took over Hubble’s mission to measure the universe’s expansion and, through those measurements, to determine the physics of the cosmic creation event. In his prime, Sandage published close to fifty papers per year in peer-reviewed astrophysical journals. Even in the last year of his life (2010), at age 84, Sandage published five papers. Throughout his career he won several awards for achievements in cosmology, including the Crafoord Prize (the astronomical equivalent of the Nobel Prize).

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Not all of Sandage’s discoveries were astronomical. I met Sandage when I was a research fellow at Caltech. A few years later, while serving as Sierra Madre Congregational Church’s minister of evangelism I noted Sandage’s name on one of the church’s registration cards. I paid him a visit. He told me he had just given his life to Christ after studying the Bible for 35 years. He then proceeded to ask me two questions: (1) Did I believe the Bible to be the error-free word of God, cover to cover, in all respects, including science and history? (2) How old did I believe the universe to be? After he heard my answers, Sandage told me ours was the only church out of sixty-six he had checked out that gave answers he felt he could endorse. Sandage not only got involved in our church, he also gave me access to library resources that greatly facilitated my writing of Creation and Time and The Creator and the Cosmos.

I first read a paper by Sandage while still in high school. In that paper Sandage proposed an elegant test, free of assumptions, that would definitely prove which of the following models for the universe is correct: steady state, oscillating, hesitating, and various ever-expanding big bang…


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