The Science of God

Dr. Gerald Schroeder is a distinguished physicist and biblical scholar, earning undergraduate and doctoral degrees from MIT. In his book, The Science of God, he addresses, among other related topics, the “fine-tuning of the universe”. In the following particular pericope, he begins by quoting renowned physicist – and avowed skeptic – Dr. Steven Weinberg:

“Life as we know it,” writes Professor Weinberg, “would be impossible if any one of several physical quantities had slightly different values…One constant does seem to require incredible fine tuning.” This constant has to do with energy of the big bang. Weinberg quantifies the tuning as one part in 10(120). That’s one part in 10 to the 120th power. Scientific notation is an understatement and so I will expand that exponential into decimal notation. If the energy of the big bang were different by one part out of 10000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000 0000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000 0000000000 there would be no life anywhere in our universe…Michael Turner, the widely quoted astrophysicist at the University of Chicago and Fermilab, describes that tuning with a simile: “The precision,” he said, “is as if one could throw a dart across the entire universe and hit a bullseye one millimeter in diameter on the other side.”

In what C.S. Lewis describes as “the greatest poem in the Psalms and one of the greatest lyrics in the world” – Psalm 19 – David wrote, “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.” (19:1)

David wrote this some 3000 years ago. Modern science continues to affirm it.

Soli Deo Gloria, Nick

Pascal’s Wager

When we die, what do you think is on the other side?  (good question)

Recently, I read a story of a son (a Christian) asking his father (not a Christian) if he ever worried about what happens after we die.  “The next life?” the father said. “I’ll worry about that when I get there!”

But, what if “when I get there” is too late?

Blaise Pascal was a 17th century French philosopher, mathematician, scientist and inventor.  He was also a Christian who is famous for what is commonly known as Pascal’s Wager:

If Christianity is false, both non-Christians and Christians have nothing to gain and nothing to lose.  But what if Christianity is true?  For, if Christianity is true, the Christian has everything to gain (heaven) while the non-Christian has everything to lose (hell).

Does one really want to wager that Christianity is false and risk spending eternity in what the Bible calls hell?

Pascal’s Wager is not without its opponents.  Writing for Christianity Today, Michael Rota cites atheist, Richard Dawkins, who asked whether God might not respect a courageous skeptic “far more than he would respect Pascal for his cowardly bet-hedging.”

Fair enough.

Make no mistake though.  Christianity is not an unreasonable option when one is considering whether or not it is true.  Taking together the order of the cosmos, the intelligent design of the human body, the historical reliability of the gospels, and the historicity of Jesus of Nazareth, the cumulative evidence for Christianity is, to say the least, compelling.

Contrary to how Dawkins may respond, Pascal was not a coward but rather quite courageous, himself, in posing such a pointed question to whomever will pause long enough to consider the gravity of what he is asking: What if the Bible is true after all?

Certainly, Christianity requires faith.  But, make no mistake: so does atheism. 

In his article, Rota concludes, “If I find myself thinking that Christianity might be false, I remember that it [also] might be true.  Do I want to take a real risk of turning my back on Jesus?  Never.”

Nor do I.

Soli Deo Gloria, Nick