• Welcome to Christian Forums
  1. Welcome to Christian Forums, a forum to discuss Christianity in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to be able to join in fellowship with Christians all over the world.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon and God Bless!

  2. The forums in the Christian Congregations category are now open only to Christian members. Please review our current Faith Groups list for information on which faith groups are considered to be Christian faiths. Christian members please remember to read the Statement of Purpose threads for each forum within Christian Congregations before posting in the forum.
  3. Please note there is a new rule regarding the posting of videos. It reads, "Post a summary of the videos you post . An exception can be made for music videos.". Unless you are simply sharing music, please post a summary, or the gist, of the video you wish to share.

Remarkable concordance between the narrative of the 1st 2 days of Gen ch. 1 and modern cosmology

Discussion in 'Physical & Life Sciences' started by Johannes.Ar, Oct 13, 2019.

  1. Johannes.Ar

    Johannes.Ar New Member

    10
    +2
    Argentina
    Catholic
    Single
    I will show the remarkable concordance between the narrative of the first two days of creation in Genesis 1:1-8 and the current conceptual framework of inflationary relativistic cosmology. First of all, some background on the exegetical and scientific levels is required.

    On the exegetical level, I am not saying or implying that it was only after Aleksei Starobinsky proposed the theory of cosmic inflation in 1979 that the narrative of Gen 1:1-8 could be correctly understood. Clearly the "deep" teaching of that narrative was available to readers of all ages. What I am saying is that the conceptual framework of current cosmology allows an additional layer of interpretation of Gen 1:1-8 that, while much less important than the "deep" sense of that narrative, can provide some marginal apologetic value and, for believers, is quite aesthetically pleasing.

    On the scientific level, it is well known that there are no observable "imprints" or "signatures" of the time before the inflationary epoch. Therefore, from the theistic perspective that God created the universe out of nothing in some initial state, it is perfectly consistent with current science [0], and at the same time maximally parsimonious, to postulate that said initial state was at the start of the inflationary epoch, empty of matter and radiation and with only the "inflaton" scalar field that drives inflationary expansion. (Moreover, when compared with the non-scientific mythology of the multiverse undergoing eternal inflation, this view enjoys the advantage of Occam's razor.)

    With this background, let's examine the concordance between the biblical narrative, quoted verse by verse from the English Standard Version, and modern cosmology.


    Day 1

    1:1 In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. = Creation ex nihilo of both the spiritual (heavens) and physical (earth) universes.

    1:2 The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. = In the inflationary epoch there was neither matter (therefore the universe was void) nor electromagnetic radiation ("light", therefore the universe was dark), but only the "inflaton" scalar field, which was probably the Higgs field (not the Higgs boson).

    1:3 And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light. = At the end of the inflationary epoch, the inflaton scalar field decayed in the particles of the Standard Model (event conventionally but, in my assumption of initial state, improperly called "reheating", because there was no previous "hot" state), including the photons of the electromagnetic radiation, i.e. "light". These particles were initially mixed in a homogeneous hot plasma, in which photons were constantly colliding with protons and electrons, so that the universe was opaque, a "luminous fog".

    1:4 And God separated the light from the darkness. = The ongoing expansion of the universe caused the gradual cooling of the hot plasma to the point in which protons could capture electrons to form electrically neutral hydrogen atoms (event conventionally but improperly called "recombination", because there was no previous state when protons and electrons were "combined"). Shortly after, photons ("light") decoupled from matter and started to travel freely (event called "photon decoupling", properly for once!). At that time, part of the initial electromagnetic radiation was still in the visible region of the spectrum, but the greatest part had alreadly redshifted into the infrared.

    1:5 And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. = As is well known, in the Israelite reckoning of time a day starts at sunset, so that each day is comprised of evening/night and then morning/daylight. This was strictly fulfilled in the "first day", when the universe started to exist in darkness ("there was evening"), and then "there was light" ("there was morning"). Duration of day 1: 400 thousand years (Ky). (For cosmology nerds: 378 +/- 1 Ky [1]).


    Day 2

    1:6-8 And God said, "Let there be an expanse in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters." And God made the expanse and separated the waters that were under the expanse from the waters that were above the expanse. And it was so. And God called the expanse Heaven. = This reflects the initial formation of structure, during which dark matter (a misnomer, as the correct name should be "transparent matter") started to collapse into the marginally denser regions by way of gravitational attraction, attracting in turn ordinary matter and giving origin to dark matter halos and then galaxies, leaving a void space ("expanse") between them.

    1:8 And there was evening and there was morning, the second day. = Since the ongoing expansion of the universe causes a continual increase of the wavelength of the "background" electromagnetic radiation (that which started to exist at "reheating" in day 1), very shortly after "photon decoupling" that electromagnetic radiation went completely into the infrared region of the spectrum, so that the universe went back into "darkness" (from the viewpoint of hypothetic human observers) for at least 400 million years (My) ("there was evening"). Then, after the formation of structure, the massive and short-lived first-generation stars (Population III, or extremely metal-poor stars) were formed and started to emit visible light ("there was morning"). Duration of day 2: 450 My.

    For cosmology nerds: day 2 ends at "reionization" [2]. Using Ho = 67.7, Om = 0.31 & zre = 10, all consistent with Planck 2015 [3], as input in Ned Wright's calculator [4], you get 472 My. Given the margins involved, 450 My is OK. If you don't know what I am talking about, congratulations, you're not a cosmology nerd.

    References

    [0] Paul J. Steinhardt, "The Big Bang Cannot Be What We Thought It Was", 2016 01 01. (Added as an edition to the article.)

    Edge.org

    "The failure to detect the B-mode pattern means that there is something very wrong with the picture of a violent Big Bang followed by a period of high energy-driven inflation. Whatever processes set the large-scale structure of the universe had a to be a gentler, lower-energy process than has been supposed.

    Simply lowering the energy concentration at which inflation starts, as some theorists have suggested, only leads to more trouble. This leaves more time after the Big Bang for the non-uniform distribution of matter and energy to drive the universe away from inflation. Starting inflation after the Big Bang and having enough inflation to smooth the universe becomes exponentially less likely as the energy concentration is lowered. The universe is more likely to emerge as too rough, too curved, too inhomogeneous compared to what we observe.

    Something more radical is called for. Perhaps an improved understanding of quantum gravity will enable us to understand how the Big Bang and inflation can be discarded in favor of gentler beginning."

    Which fits perfectly my postulate that the universe began to exist at rest at the start of the inflationary epoch, with no previous Big Bang. Whereby quantum gravity is not needed, Big Bang is discarded, and inflation kept.

    [1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recombination_(cosmology)

    [2] Reionization - Wikipedia

    [3] http://xxx.lanl.gov/abs/1502.01589

    [4] http://www.astro.ucla.edu/~wright/CosmoCalc.html
     
    We teamed up with Faith Counseling. Can they help you today?
  2. SkyWriting

    SkyWriting The Librarian Supporter

    +5,565
    United States
    Non-Denom
    Married
    US-Others

    There is no Latin, Greek , or Hebrew "Creation ex nihilo".
    I checked.
     
  3. Johannes.Ar

    Johannes.Ar New Member

    10
    +2
    Argentina
    Catholic
    Single
    Whereas I know that creation ex nihilo is not the only way in which Gen 1:1 can be interpreted, I do interpret it that way, in line with 2 Macc 7:28, the Apostolic Tradition reflected in the writings of the Fathers, and the Magisterium of the Catholic Church.
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2019
  4. Dave-W

    Dave-W Welcoming grandchild #7, Arturus Waggoner! Supporter

    +15,734
    United States
    Messianic
    Married
    US-Others
    Why are you trying to explain something purely supernatural using modern physics terms?

    I find the attempt wrong-headed at best and sacrilegious at worst.
     
  5. Michael

    Michael Contributor Supporter

    +1,087
    Christian
    I'm curious as to why would you interpret it as "ex nihilo" when even you said:

    It seems to me that if the inflation scalar field or Higgs field existed, then the universe was created out of *something*, rather than "nothing". Even if matter as we understand it didn't exist, something is 'inflating".
     
  6. public hermit

    public hermit Well-Known Member Supporter

    +1,197
    United States
    Christian
    Single
    US-Others
    Lawrence Krauss tried to make a similar argument that the "nothing" out of which the universe came are quantum fields. Which, contrary to his opinion, are something and not nothing.

    Is Lawrence Krauss a Physicist, or Just a Bad Philosopher?
     
  7. Johannes.Ar

    Johannes.Ar New Member

    10
    +2
    Argentina
    Catholic
    Single
    I did not mean that space with the inflaton scalar field existed from an indefinite past, but that it started to exist at t=0. Before t=0 there was nothing, neither space nor time. It was quite clear in my first post:

    "Therefore, from the theistic perspective that God created the universe out of nothing in some initial state, it is perfectly consistent with current science [0], and at the same time maximally parsimonious, to postulate that said initial state was at the start of the inflationary epoch, empty of matter and radiation and with only the "inflaton" scalar field that drives inflationary expansion."
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2019
  8. FrumiousBandersnatch

    FrumiousBandersnatch Well-Known Member

    +4,329
    Atheist
    Amazing! I'm convinced!

    It's so accurate - if you take days to be variable periods of up to hundreds of millions of years, and waters to be dark transparent matter, and Heaven to be intergalactic space, and the big turtle to be our galaxy, and the elephants... oh wait, that's a different one.
     
  9. FrumiousBandersnatch

    FrumiousBandersnatch Well-Known Member

    +4,329
    Atheist
    To be fair, he did go to considerable lengths to define his terms - including a discussion on the various ways 'nothing' is used, what he meant by his uses of it and why he was using it that way.
     
  10. public hermit

    public hermit Well-Known Member Supporter

    +1,197
    United States
    Christian
    Single
    US-Others
    I agree that he did and I don't want to be unfair to Krauss. What is fair to say about Krauss is that not only will he not listen to philosophers, even those with similar background knowledge as his, but he treats them with disdain. And yet, he co-opts one of the oldest philosophical questions (How does something come out of nothing?) and then sets out to redefine nothing.

    None of that would be an issue if his redefinition was even a little bit convincing. But, of course, his nothing is something, and it is something because it entails one thing more than nothing.

    Philosophy under attack: Lawrence Krauss and the new denialism
     
  11. FrumiousBandersnatch

    FrumiousBandersnatch Well-Known Member

    +4,329
    Atheist
    OK; he's not everyone's cup of tea ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
     
  12. Michael

    Michael Contributor Supporter

    +1,087
    Christian
    Having read his book, and having been very disappointed by it, I'd say he's a bad philosopher and his book essentially misrepresents the meaning of quantum fields. "Nothing" would be the complete absence of such fields in the first place, and yet that's not the premise he began with, so the title of his book is *highly* misleading IMO.

    ‘A Universe From Nothing,’ by Lawrence M. Krauss
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
    • List
Loading...