Scientists at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics claimed to have identified gravitational waves that rippled through space right after the Big Bang, causing the universe to expand by 100 trillion trillion times in a fraction of a second 13.8 billion years ago.
The images were thought to be captured by a telescope called BICEP2. By observing what they believe to be a faint glow left over from the Big Bang, the scientists said small fluctuations gave them new clues about conditions in the early universe. The experiment, however, raised doubts by other scientists as to whether what the telescope picked up really came from the first moments of the universe’s existence.
The team recently released its conclusion in the journal, Physical Review Letters, one of the most prestigious publications in scientific discipline. In part it stated, “These models are not sufficiently constrained by external public data to exclude the possibility of dust emission bright enough to explain the entire excess signal.”
Paul Steinhardt, the director of Princeton University’s Center for Theoretical Science, told the British journal “Nature” in June, “Serious flaws in the analysis have been revealed that transform the sure detection into no detection. The search for gravitational waves must begin anew.”
David Spergel, a theoretical astrophysicist also at Princeton, pointed out, “It is not certain whether polarized emissions come from galactic dust or from the early universe. We know that galactic dust emits polarized radiations. We see that in many areas of the sky, and what we pointed out in our paper is that pattern they have seen is just as consistent with the galactic dust radiations as with gravitational waves. I think in retrospect, they should have been more careful about making a big announcement.”
Another surprising headline followed about scientists at King’s College in London announcing that the current Big Bang model cannot account for the existence of the universe and Higgs boson physics cannot account for the universe’s existence. Scientists at King’s, one of the world’s leading research and teaching universities, came to this conclusion after modeling hypothetical conditions of the universe immediately after the Big Bang.
“During the early universe, we expected cosmic inflation — this is a rapid expansion of the universe right after the Big Bang,” Robert Hogan, a physicist with King’s College, told “LiveScience.” “This expansion causes lots of stuff to shake around.”
However, Hogan added, the “shaking around” caused by the Big Bang would have brought catastrophic consequences to the early universe. Some scientists now believe these findings are evidence that the Big Bang theory is a flawed model.
Is there a lesson for us? yes. Do not be quick to believe every scientific conclusion. Today, we are seeing some scientific theories announced as facts prematurely, while other scientific “facts” are being recalled, rebooted or revised. There are two truths gone unnoticed in these reports: 1. We do not know everything. 2. We will know more in the future than we know today.
Could the problem with many scientists be their seeking to understand the origin of the universe without giving much thought to an Intelligent Designer, a Creator of science? Is it possible that by embracing the concept of God, a better understanding of how the universe started, why we are here, where we are going and what is our purpose in life can be achieved?
Experimental physicist Wenlong He, who works for Scotland’s University of Strathclyde, said, “What the Bible says about God set me to wondering again whether the universe could have been created. As a physicist, my job is to understand nature. So I decided to give the facts some careful thought.
“First, I knew that a closed system cannot become more organized or remain organized unless acted upon by an external agent. That is the second law of thermodynamics. Since the universe and life on earth are highly ordered, I concluded that they must be products of an external agent, a Creator.”
As a youth, he said he believed in evolution, but after weighing the evidence, this physicist whose job is to explore ways of accelerating charged particles to speeds close to the speed of light in order to study the structure of atoms, said he is convinced, “Someone designed the earth to sustain life.”
That comment fits with words in the oldest book in existence which tells us, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” at Genesis 1:1. Exactly how it was done remains a mystery. We live in a universe where the impossible has happened — and more than once. Some call it science. Others call it a miracle. But to the God of science and miracles they are manifestations of a mystery already solved.
It is a mystery that can best be understood by those humble enough to admit mistakes, look to a Higher Power and try again. That includes scientists and anyone else who would seek to know this awe-inspiring Creator or understand His magnificent universe.