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How do I answer these atheist claims?

Full Question

How should I respond to an atheist who denies creation, claims there has been an infinite number of universes before this one, and believes that the universe was made not by God but through the “Big Bang,” part of the universe’s endless cycle of expansion and contraction?

Answer

There are several points you could make. First note that in order for the universe to fall back in on itself there would have to be enough mass for gravity to overcome the outward force of the expansion. But according to the best estimates scientists have, there isn’t enough matter to cause such a contraction. Consequently, if the universe cannot contract, there could have been no previous big bangs and no endless cycles. At most you could posit one big bang.

There is nothing that would cause the universe to expand again after it had collapsed. If such a collapse occurred – a big crunch, so to speak – the universe would remain in an unimaginably compressed state, never capable of expanding again. The tremendous gravity exerted by such a great mass would prevent any expansion. Black holes, which are most probably collapsed stars, are an example of this phenomenon on a much smaller scale. A black hole’s gravitational pull is so strong not even light is able to escape from it.

If all the matter in the universe were compressed into a single black hole or something like a black hole, the gravitational forces would be incalculable, and it is hard to imagine anything that could overcome them. If they couldn’t be overcome, nothing could escape in the form of another big bang.

Even if there were a mechanism to re-expand the universe, each cycle of expansion and contraction would lose energy because of entropy, the tendency to of matter run down, much as a spring-driven clock runs down. The extent of the universe’s expansion would diminish with each cycle – consider how swings of a pendulum slowly diminish – and eventually the universe would cease expanding entirely, its mass remaining collapsed. There could never be an infinite number of successive expansions and contractions.

Keep in mind that the idea that the universe came into existence as a result of a cataclysmic explosion of highly compressed matter is not inconsistent with the Catholic teaching that God created the universe. A big bang could have been part of his method of creation.

But an atheist has a problem here. If there really was a big bang, and if there could not have been an infinite series of big bangs before the present one, then there are only two possibilities: Either God created matter out of nothing and (arguably) set things going through a big bang – this alternative destroys atheism – or matter existed for an infinite amount of time in a primordial black hole state. But if it existed that way for an infinite amount of time, it never could have exploded in the big bang.

If an infinite amount of time passed without a big bang, then every combination of protoplasmic matter and energy would have existed at one time or another within that black hole, without any one combination leading to the big bang. All the combinations would have been tried, and none of them would have produced the explosion. (Remember, this presumes an infinite amount of time.) If none of the combinations could have produced a big bang, and if a big bang occurred anyway, it could have arisen only from outside intervention, not from anything inside the black hole.

Since the whole of the universe – all matter and energy, even space Itself – was compressed into the black hole, “outside” must imply a non-natural force, a force above nature, and that is the definition of supernatural. No matter which alternative an atheist takes, he ends up with God.










7 comments

  1. Ed Castillo Reply

    Beautiful. Science and religion proves God’s creation true.

  2. Zi Tok Victor Reply

    Please I will Like to know more about Monstrance, and why is it shaped like a sun, cause someone (Protestant) believe that is another form of worshiping the sun-gun.

  3. Kae Verens Reply

    Lots of misunderstandings here.

    First, stating that there was a “before” before the beginning of the universe, is like saying that there is a “north” that is more north than the north pole. The universe’s beginning was the beginning if space /and/ of time.
    https://briankoberlein.com/2014/02/15/north-north-pole/

    You state that the initial state of the universe, being equivalent to a black hole, would be unable to explode because a black hole by definition is strong enough to stop everything, including light, to escape; no explosion would be strong enough to explode a black hole.
    However: black holes can evaporate through a process called “Hawking radiation”
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hawking_radiation
    Also, the beginning of the universe was not an explosion in the usually understood manner – it was an expansion of space itself.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metric_expansion_of_space

    You also describe the big bang as “a cataclysmic explosion of highly compressed matter”. This is /wrong/. There was no “highly compressed matter” to explode. It was an expansion of space, which then resulted in the creation (through quantum effects) of sub-atomic particles which eventually combined and cooled to form matter.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Bang

    “If there really was a big bang, […] then there are only two possibilities: Either God created matter out of nothing […] or matter existed for an infinite amount of time in a primordial black hole state”
    No. Space expanded rapidly, and particles were created from nothing through Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle, resulting in a universe full of matter.
    http://www.newscientist.com/blogs/nstv/2011/07/how-the-universe-appeared-from-nothing.html

    Your entire article is based on a complete misunderstanding of physics. Please try again.

    1. Eric H. Reply

      The authors complete understanding of the Big Bang Theory is indeed somewhat lacking, but his theology is correct. However, the last example you gave is nothing short of a religion in and of itself. It is not based in science, but pseudo-science. Wishful thinking on the part of a staunch atheist without any solid evidence to support his claim. The church on the other hand has always taught that there is only one truth, and that science and authentic faith cannot contradict one another. Faith as well as science is the pursuit of understanding the vast wonders of the universe. Do not make the mistake of confusing Catholics with Evangelicals. We do not throw out good science for the sake of religion.

  4. Mary Bloom Reply

    I find that I can drive an atheist insane when they try to drive home the “Big Bang Theory” and that God ( who they don’t believe exists) was not responsible for the universe-earth-mankind. I ask where did the comet/meteor come from that exploded to bring about the earth, they answer ” dust particles accumulating in space over millions of years. Question: Where did the dust come from? Answer: “the atoms present in the universe ( I am paraphrasing here & condensing so that the post isn’t too long lol) I ask “Where did the atoms come from ” and then challenge them to create an atom, since they believe God didn’t create anything they should have NO trouble doing it themselves. I usually get the response by this time of “Oh you’re just talking nonsense now” and walk away. Argument won!

    1. Garrett Llewellyn Reply

      P1: “My dog is skyscraper!”
      P2: “What?!”
      P1: “That’s correct–foot is horse tail! Can you make sunset? I don’t think so!”
      P2: “Okay, this person is clearly out of their mind. I’m just going to walk away now…”
      P1: “Argument won!”

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