THE COSMOS, ITS CREATOR, ITS CUSTODIANS: WHY REVISING REALITY WAS WRITTEN

THE COSMOS BEGINS BY GOD CREATING

 “Cosmology: the study of the nature, origin, and evolution of the universe.”
OXFORD DICTIONARY OF PHYSICS

WHY COSMOLOGY AND THE MEANING OF HUMANITY ARE LINKED

The most popular scientifically-themed public television program ever produced was the 1980 program featuring the famous astronomer Carl Sagan. The program was entitled Cosmos.  It remains the most popular public television program in history and has been watched by 500 million people worldwide.

AUTHOR AND COSMOLOGIST, CARL SAGAN
AUTHOR AND COSMOLOGIST, CARL SAGAN

Sagan begins the book that accompanied the TV show by declaring: “The Cosmos is all that is, or ever was, or ever will be”.

He goes on to offer a perspective that seems elegant, innocent, and to the scientifically-minded, obvious. But for those who believe in the Judeo-Christian understanding of origins, it offers immediate challenges to our way of thinking.  Says Sagan:

Today we have discovered a powerful and elegant way to understand the universe, a method called science; it has revealed to us a universe so ancient and so vast that human affairs seem at first sight to be of little consequence. We have grown distant from the Cosmos. It has seemed remote and irrelevant to everyday concerns. But science has found not only that the universe has a reeling and ecstatic grandeur, not only that it is accessible to human understanding, but also that we are, in a very real and profound sense, a part of that Cosmos, born from it, our fate deeply connected with it. The most basic human events and the most trivial trace back to the universe and its origins. This book is devoted to the exploration of that cosmic perspective.[1] [Emphasis mine]

On the surface, Sagan expresses a sentiment most can’t help but echo. When we see pictures of the nebulae, the galaxies, even the planetary bodies in our own solar system, we are overwhelmed with wonder.  But the question is whether this sense of wonder constitutes an adequate foundation to base our identity as a race, our reason for being here, and a knowledge of who God is and whether we are or are not aware of Him. It was enough for Carl Sagan and his present day protégé Neil deGrasse Tyson.  But is it really enough to justify such optimism?  Sagan’s earnest passion was to find meaning in the universe and the place of human beings in it. His fundamental premise is that the universe comprises a COSMOS – implying it has a knowable design. Sagan’s basis for humanity’s purpose is our “connection” to the Cosmos. For Sagan, humanity must explore and comprehend it, learning what it contains and how it functions. We have meaning because we are a part of it.  But that is it.

HOW CAN WE JUSTIFY HUMANITY MATTERS AT ALL?

My point is this: Sagan’s quest comes from a leap of faith – an optimism and enthusiasm that is neither logical nor realistic.  While I may share Sagan’s sense of the creation’s grandeur and be awed by it, I don’t draw conclusions about the meaning of humankind just because we find ourselves in a grand universe and we have a sense of its beauty.  There has to be more to it than that.

BILLIONS AND BILLIONS OF STARS
BILLIONS AND BILLIONS OF STARS

I appreciate the vastness of God’s creation, His design, and am in awe for His power to create. Sagan and I agree that the creation is fabulous.  But we have very different reasons for believing that humankind matters.  I believe, and the authors writing with me believe, that we matter most because God has placed us at the center of the story of the Cosmos. This provides the foundational point of this book. The symbol of Da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man is used throughout this book to reiterate human beings (as God created them) are at the center of the Cosmos.  God placed us here just as Psalm 8 testifies. The story arc of the Bible is the story of the Adam and Eve placed in the Garden of Eden to be its caretakers. Humankind fell and that fall greatly impacted the Cosmos. The rest of the story arc then becomes how God redeemed human beings and will put them back into a paradisiacal setting in the New Jerusalem in a recreated Cosmos.

In stark contrast, the atheist existentialist would demand much more than what Sagan offers. The atheist existentialist would not find meaning by being awed by the wonders of the universe.  Sagan was awed.  But the famous existentialist Jean Paul Sartre wasn’t. An existentialist like Sartre who adheres to the principles of science without religious belief, declares that humanity has no hope or sense of purpose because there is no God to have made it so.  Humankind finds itself here but cannot make any reference to God in order to certify human meaning, because God does not exist.  There is no grand design. The universe is NOT a Cosmos.  It is what it is. The universe remains meaningless because (in essence) human beings are accidents. We are merely the result of evolutionary principles and “chance”. According to Darwinism, we are nothing more than a carbon-based canister of accumulated mutations – one mutation based upon another, and another, and another – until arriving at our present form. We have been millions of years in the mill.  It’s marvelous we wound up this way, but it means nada.

Then there are those like atheist Richard Dawkins who would make the evolutionary process itself “God”. [2]

EVOLUTION - DOES MEANING MATTER TO MANKIND?
EVOLUTION – DOES MEANING MATTER TO MANKIND?

Dawkins finds meaning in its “principles”. But evolution with its principles of “natural selection” and “survival of the fittest” dismisses love and compassion. If God advances His creation through Darwinism, God is the devil. Humanity has no meaning.

Altogether, atheism, existentialism, and Darwinism created despair. This despair dominated culture during much of the twentieth century. Just as Carl Sagan possessed a peculiar sense of hope in “awe”, Dawkins had a peculiar sense of hope in evolution. But for the vast majority, evolution was “found out” to be much less than a hopeful dynamo advancing the species; it did not inexorably promote progress as Herbert Spencer (1820-1903) the English evolutionary philosopher had proclaimed.  And as if that was not enough, optimism and hope collapsed once the view was established that morality had no basis in reality. The German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche (who died in an insane asylum as the end of the nineteenth century), proclaimed the death of God. With His death morality died too, for God had always been the basis for morals. From then on, any meaning for humanity must be achieved when the Übermensch (“overman”) would surpass conventional thinking (mostly Jewish ways of thinking according to Nietzsche) and establish new values – a transvaluation (or reevaluation) of values – based on stoic virtues lacking in compassion.[3]

Therefore, without God, morality doesn’t really exist. If we determine morality matters, it is our choice to assert it so.  We can “talk morals” but we mustn’t imagine that God exists to undergird them – that is, to ensure “the good guys win” or rewards await the moral person – for only man, finite man (with his flaws) exists.  But through his successor, Nietzsche argued the Übermensch, (mistranslated “superman”), can and would reinforce a new type of morality based upon a humankind that forsakes the delusion of God – a humankind that shoulders all responsibility.

Subsequently, unfettered from the old anachronism of religious faith, Germany would become the primary belligerent starting two world wars to exert its will. The German “will” must overpower all others.  Henceforth, for Hitler and his accomplices, the Teutonic Race would guide humanity forward.  Of course, we know that after twice failing to achieve its “Aryan destiny”, Germany proved convincingly that when all compassion vanishes from human action, when morality is not grounded in the realm of absolute truth, reality turns into nothingness.  Meaning is annihilated.  Thus, the ruins of post-WWII Europe well illustrate the consequence of humanity serving as the sole basis for morals.

THE EMPHASIS UPON THE CUSTODIANS OF THE CREATION AND THEIR CREATOR

The Bible says, “In the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth.” (Genesis 1:1).  As to how God created it exactly, whether with a Big Bang or through some other method less explosive, the Bible remains quiet.  And yet, Moses the author of Genesis, moves rapidly through the steps of creation to underscore the making of humankind. “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.” (Genesis 1:27) The Bible begins with much more than the mere fact that men and women find themselves in the universe – as part of it – owing their existence to it.  Rather, the Bible declares that the Cosmos begins with the Creator creating, and specifically, creating humanity.  It is this fact –God created us – within which we find our purpose and can experience true meaning.  Three times in a single verse Moses underscored God created us.  Moreover, as we soon learn, the fact that God created us was in order to have a relationship with us. This declares unequivocally we matter because we matter to Him!  And since we matter to God, human beings are significant.  But there is more to it still, much more.

Although fallen creatures, Jesus died for us.  In His vicarious death, God reinforces this yet again, He loves us.  As Paul says, It is rare indeed for anyone to die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8, NIV) God created us for a high purpose – God redeemed us for this same purpose. We are to be the custodians of the Cosmos. These are the purposeful postulates upon which Christianity builds Cosmology.  We begin this book founded upon these premises.

WHY REVISING REALITY WAS WRITTEN

The purpose of our book is to revise our reality, the awareness of Christians, concerning the Cosmos.  We need this revision for two very important reasons:  One, we have been brainwashed with the secular, atheistic version of reality all of our lives.  We have been taught the Big Bang is the truth, as an incomprehensible and chaotic origin all for matter and energy.  The brainwashing goes to far as to extol the virtues (I say this sarcastically) of an inexorable

expansion of the universe until it dies a death of entropy despite the inherent contradiction that there exists an evolutionary advance of our species “built into” the Cosmos. However, we cannot stress enough that progressive evolution and death by entropy are incompatible.  Scientific atheism can’t have it both ways.  Ironically, believers must be realists!

could-a-supernatural-cinematic-universe-work-511465

Likewise, we need to revise our reality because although we are a people of faith, we have drifted far from the biblical premise that we live in a supernatural universe, an understanding of the Cosmos where there are unseen superhuman creatures that directly influence our lives, as well as from the assumption that God can and does intervene in the affairs of men and women.  God participates as an actor on the stage as well as serving as its writer and director, because He built the playhouse, He maintains it, and He produces the play itself.

We serve a God that is all-powerful and compassionate.  He is not “the Burger King God” (i.e., “have it your way”) for He has a greater plan for us. Our desires – our wishes and wants – may not be what is best for us.  And yet, as Jesus said boldly, I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly” (John 10:10).  Even in the Old Testament, God’s sovereign oversight of our individual lives was understood.  Below is but one example where the Psalmist sings praises for God’s loving foreknowledge for each of us as individuals:

 15 My frame was not hidden from you 

when I was made in the secret place,

when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.

16 Your eyes saw my unformed body;

all the days ordained for me were written in your book

before one of them came to be. (Psalm 139-15-16, NIV)

NO MATTER HOW OLD YOU BELIEVE THE EARTH IS

However, the very next verse, Genesis 1:2 poses a controversy to all of us who believe in God as the Creator.  It reads, “And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.”  The issue where earnest believers may part company has to do with whether or not the earth was initially created by God in a formless state, in a state of chaos and then further enhanced to today’s form, or whether it was a Cosmos instantly when fashioned by God’s hand.  The latter view asserts that something happened to change it from a Cosmos to a chaos.  This view is better known as the Gap Theory.  Those who believe in this point of view contend that something happened between Genesis 1:1 and Genesis 1:2 to cause the earth to become a “wasteland” (be formless – a void). Something transpired, presumably the fall of Satan and one-third of the angels from Heaven, that radically altered what had been created from the very first instant as a perfect Creation (or in steps not disclosed to us) to render the Creation chaotic.  On the other hand, the former view – the Young Earth position – supposes that the author of the Creation account offers a pregnant pause in his description.  God made the raw elements of creation first and then He assembled then into their final form. There is no gap – but there were steps. No matter which view you hold, it asserts a huge cosmic premise.  God was the Creator – the world is not an accident.  It was designed.

DESIGN AND THE DISCOVERY INSTITUTE
DESIGN AND THE DISCOVERY INSTITUTE

In the book before you, however, we will not take a particular position on this debate.  We are creationists, generically speaking.  We assert that God created the heaven and the earth. Thus, we embrace believers in three distinct camps regarding the age or nature of Creation: (1) those who advocate a “young Earth”; (2) those who support the notion of an old earth that invokes “the gap” of time between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2 allowing for the possibility God’s creation is billions of years old; and (3) those who simply believe in the anthropic principle [4] – that the universe was created in such a way that human life could exist… and as humans we could understand the complexity as well as unity within what is. For this third group, the age of the earth and its precise formation remains beside the point. The creation was designed for us to live in it. Scientific investigation underscores this fact again and again. Indeed, scientific investigation itself proves it was designed in such a way that we could observe and measure it. The Discovery Institute, a think tank in Seattle, Washington, focuses great minds on this endeavor.  I am privileged to know a few of them.

The Vastness of Creation - From the Earth to the Sky to the Stars Beyond
The Vastness of Creation – From the Earth to the Sky to the Stars Beyond

In any event, all profess this truth: God created us to be in fellowship with Him. The Westminster Catechism of the Reformed Church proclaims,

Q: What is the chief end of man? A: Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.

In all three of these cases (and probably in any permutation of these that the reader may hold), there resides a shared belief in design – that there was “a chief end in mind” when the Creator made us.  In philosophy, it is called teleology, coming from the Greek telos (“end”) and logos (“reason”), meaning an “explanation by reference to some purpose, end, goal, or function” (Britannica Dictionary).  God’s end goal was to design and create by His Word a world for humanity to inhabit. 

What happens in this world ultimately is, as I say in my other books, “cosmically decisive”.  What happens here matters. And it matters to the entire Creation, not just our little blue planet on an outer spiral arm of the Milky Way Galaxy. 


REVISING REALITY:  A BIBLICAL LOOK INTO THE COSMOS, VOLUME 1

Is available in paperback and eBook formats.  Click Here to Visit Amazon.com to review information about the book.

 

REVISING REALITY:  CONSISTENTLY LISTED AMONG THE TOP TEN BEST SELLERS ON AMAZON.COM IN ESCHATOLOGY AND COSMOLOGY

 

The most recent reviewer…

on December 2, 2016

As a scientist myself, my perspective is that this compilation is a product of some of the best minds regarding the unfolding and hidden events facing us NOW in this incredible time that we live in. Do not miss this incredible resource and “mind food” for your consideration.

“Test all things: hold fast to what is good.” (1 Thess 5:21) is one of my favorite verses in the Ancient text of the Bible.
Quoting a non-Biblical scientist whom I also follow regarding events unfolding on the planet…”Skeptical? Do your homework.”

After doing my homework, I have become more convinced that Anthony Patch is right on track, and I so appreciate the work that he and others have compiled for our edification.

 


NOTES

[1] Sagan, Carl. Cosmos (p. xvi). Random House Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

[2] Citing blogger Albert Mohler (2011) “In The Greatest Show on Earth: The Evidence for Evolution, Dawkins sets out to present his most compelling case for evolution. He is — make no mistake — an ardent enthusiast for his argument. Seldom do we read a book written with such fervor and certitude, with an amazing amount of condescension and anger added to the mix, as well.  “Evolution is a fact,” he asserts. “Beyond reasonable doubt, beyond serious doubt, beyond sane, informed, intelligent doubt, beyond doubt evolution is a fact. The evidence for evolution is at least as strong as the evidence for the Holocaust, even allowing for eye witnesses to the Holocaust.”

Note that this means, by obvious implication, that all objections to evolution are insane, unintelligent, and uninformed. Read his words carefully. Richard Dawkins is so bold as to assert that anyone who disagrees with him on such a controversial issue is insane, unintelligent, and uninformed”.  Of course, anyone in the world who holds to any religious belief would disagree.

[3]  “Elaborating the concept in The Antichrist, Nietzsche asserts that Christianity, not merely as a religion but also as the predominant moral system of the Western world, inverts nature, and is ‘hostile to life’. As ‘the religion of pity’, it elevates the weak over the strong, exalting that which is “ill-constituted and weak” at the expense of that which is full of life and vitality.” Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transvaluation_of_values. This view of “compassionless love” would be exalted in the occult teachings of Aleister Crowley and The Brotherhood of Saturn, the most impactful German occult secret society that will figure into our story later.  This Brotherhood was formed in the same era as Nietzsche.

[4] The Oxford Dictionary of Physics defines the anthropic principle in this way: “The principle that the observable universe has to be as it is, rather than any other way, otherwise we would not be able to observe it. There are many versions of the anthropic principle. The weak anthropic principle is specifically concerned with the conditions necessary for conscious life on earth and asserts that numerical relations found for fundamental constants, such as the *gravitational constant, have to hold at the present epoch because at any other epoch there would be no intelligent lifeform to measure the constants.” A Dictionary of Physics (Oxford Quick Reference) (pp. 17-18). OUP Oxford. Kindle Edition.

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