In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. (Gen. 1:1)
Or did he? Scientists in the 20th C. assumed there must be another explanation for the origins of the universe. Many adopted the worldview of materialism, and believed it was their duty to relieve mankind of primitive notions about origins. That’s why Edwin Hubble’s discovery of the red shift set many scientists on edge. They knew it had theistic implications.
The red shift indicated that stars are moving outward, expanding the universe. As physicist Robert Jastrow put it, imagine filming this expansion, then running the film in reverse. Eventually all mass, energy, and space would be reduced to a finite singularity, i.e. a beginning called the big bang in popular parlance.
Jastrow founded NASA’s Goddard Institute. He was agnostic about the existence of God. But he didn’t mind pointing out the surprisingly theistic implications of the big bang. He calls it “an exceedingly strange development, unexpected by all but the theologians. For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountains of ignorance; he is about to conquer the highest peak; as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries.”
One of his contemporaries, Stephen Hawking, posited a mathematical explanation in the field of quantum cosmology as the cause of material world. Those who look for reasons to dismiss the God explanation put their faith in Hawking, who was no doubt a brilliant scientist. But Hawking himself identified the problem with his proofs. He asked, “What is it that breathes fire into the equations and makes a universe for them to describe?” In other words, equations do not create. He may have the right equation, and equations exist in minds. For quantum cosmology to have explanatory power, it needs a mind predating the material world. And that mind had to have the power to breathe fire into it, to make something (the big bang) happen!
Jastrow supposed Albert Einstein shared his thoughts about science pointing to God. He quoted Einstein, “the harmony of natural law…reveals an intelligence,” and commented, “The beauty and simplicity of those laws…suggest a design. A design suggest a designer. That was (Einstein’s) back door approach to the question of belief in God.”
Here is what theologians know: “In the beginning was the Word…All things came into being through Him…And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1). Jesus, God the Son, is that Word. Those who looked into His face saw the One who spoke the universe into existence. Those who believe in Him will not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16). And science keeps pointing us to that same Creator!