I do not usually stray into the Creation versus Evolution debate. It is a fruitless discussion most of the time. Both sides present their arguments while talking circles around one another, never coming to a complete understanding of where the other person is speaking from. The problem is they are speaking from two entirely different planes. The Creationist argues from a point of view where God is the architect of all things—no thing exists without the direct influence of God’s creative hand. For the Evolutionist, the universe as we see it today is the result of eons of perfectly ordered events resulting in our current experience of reality.
Popular debates center on whether the origin of the universe was an event called the Big Bang or if it was simply the first day God spoke the universe into existence. Creationists have long fought against the idea of the Big Bang while the Evolutionist scoffs at them for their lack of intelligence. Both have missed the deeper implications of their defense of these positions. Now there are plenty of Theists, Christians included, who find no issue with evolution in relationship to their faith so I want to shift a bit. Instead of Evolutionist and Creationist I will refer to the opposing views as Atheist and Christian. I believe this will suit the discussion better and here is why.
Christians who have argued against the theories of evolution have missed an obvious problem Atheism is presented with when they claim the universe began 13.7 billion years ago with the Big Bang. A Prime Event, igniting all matter and energy from a Singularity, traps the Atheist in a universe that requires a Prime Mover; in other word, God. The reason is, it is impossible for a Big Bang to be the starting point of the universe because it requires there to be nothing before it. If there was in fact something before that Prime Event, then the Big Bang would not be the beginning; it would just be another step in the existence of the universe. Nothing (nihilo) is an impossible state of existence. If we remove something, the nothing that exists in its place will still be something, because it has existence, though different. Let’s take a break. While we take a break, remember that even though we are no longer doing something, we are still doing something else.
In the physical universe, a state of nothing (ex nihilo) is impossible. We will never reach a state ex nihilo and we cannot have begun with it. True nothingness is incomprehensible because it is outside of our experience of reality. We can’t go there. The only thing capable of existing outside of the physical universe, where nothing is present, is a being which is also incomprehensible since it would exist outside of our experience of reality. If that being exists it would not be bound by the physical laws ordering the universe, including space and time. Any attempts to use scientific research and study, which are bound by physical laws, to find that being, would be futile because “we can’t go there.” This is the problem the Atheist faces when claiming the universe began with the Big Bang. On the other side of that event there had to be something. Better educated Atheists understand this problem and I will touch on this later, but first I want to point out what should be obvious at this point.
First though I will clarify that I am not attempting here to disprove the cosmological event referred to as the Big Bang. I personally have no issues with this. I am only pointing out the problem an Atheist traps their self in when arguing that the Big Bang was the origin of the universe or for that matter when arguing for any Prime Event in general. If the universe was created ex nihilo, from true nothing, it would need to be set in motion by something outside of our physical universe. Aristotle called this the Prime Mover.
Almost since its beginning, Christianity has defended an idea called creation ex nihilo. The Christian understanding of the Deity is a being who exists outside of the physical universe in the way I described above. God, according to Christianity, is the Prime Mover. At some point, there was nothing occupying the realm we refer to as the universe. At another point, God filled that nothing with the universe. He created us out of nothing—creation ex nihilo. Without a Prime Mover, the theory of the Big Bang as a cosmological starting point of matter and energy is impossible. Even if you do not believe in the Christian God, something had to form then ignite that initial exploding Singularity. For Christians, that something is the first person of the Holy Trinity.
I will continue this in a later post.