There are some fundamental ideas that point away from a exclusively materialistic closed universe, towards a universe existing as a result of intent.Current evidence based thinking supports the idea of the universe existing from the moment of a singularity;described by Hoyle mockingly as the ‘Big Bang’.Either the universe had a initial agency cause or it has existed eternally there are no other options available as far as I can see.An eternal universe has several problems -one that is new to me is the idea of heat death as expounded by William Lane Craig – :

‘According to the second law of thermodynamics, processes taking place in a closed system always tend toward a state of equilibrium. Now our interest is in what implications this has when the law is applied to the universe as a whole. For the universe is a gigantic closed system, since it is everything there is and no energy is being fed into it from without. The second law seems to imply that, given enough time, the universe will reach a state of thermodynamic equilibrium, known as the “heat death” of the universe. This death may be hot or cold, depending on whether the universe will expand forever or eventually re-contract. On the one hand, if the density of the universe is great enough to overcome the force of the expansion, then the universe will re-contract into a hot fireball. As the universe contracts, the stars burn more rapidly until they finally explode or evaporate. As the universe grows denser, the black holes begin to gobble up everything around them and begin themselves to coalesce until all the black holes finally coalesce into one gigantic black hole which is coextensive with the universe, from which it will never re-emerge. On the other hand, if the density of the universe is insufficient to halt the expansion, as seems more likely, then the galaxies will turn all their gas into stars and the stars will burn out. At 10[30 ]years the universe will consist of 90% dead stars, 9% supermassive black holes, and l% atomic matter. Elementary particle physics suggests that thereafter protons will decay into electrons and positrons, so that space will be filled with a rarefied gas so thin that the distance between an electron and a positron will be about the size of the present galaxy. At 10[100] years some scientists believe that the black holes themselves will dissipate into radiation and elementary particles. Eventually all the matter in the dark, cold, ever-expanding universe will be reduced to an ultra-thin gas of elementary particles and radiation. Equilibrium will prevail throughout, and the entire universe will be in its final state, from which no change will occur.

Now the question which needs to be asked is this: if, given sufficient time, the universe will reach heat death, then why is it not now in a state of heat death if it has existed for infinite time? If the universe did not begin to exist, then it should now be in a state of equilibrium.’

The problem with an eternal universe that has always existed is that we have an infinite regress, that is we’d have an infinite series of moments to surpass in order to arrive at this moment. The infinite past would never catch up with the present so that no causality would be effected. That leaves the idea of an agent causing the universe to exist,further to this idea I came upon this idea from a guy on a forum called forhisglory which I like :

1.The universe, and everything in it, is contingent ,that is it does not have to exist (it is not certain to exist-it is not logically necessary)

2.This contingent nature of the universe gives it the potential to not exist or to change its nature .

3.Something that has potentiality is by definition an effect of some cause.

4.Contingent entities cannot cause there own existence .

5.Therefore, there must be pure actuality, that exists as a necessary being, to actualize all that is contingent. We could call that pure actuality God.

  1. Paul says:

    Well, yes, I agree with you. But on the other hand, we could call it the multiverse, or a quantum fluctuation.

    Materialism has had a hard time of it recently, though. The universe is not eternal. Life isn’t fundamentally simple, or common in the universe. The earth isn’t just a pale blue dot. None of that proves logically that there is a god of the sort talked about in the Bible, but what has happened is that materialism has failed to prove that such a god is unlikely, “God Delusion” notwithstanding. In fact, as a demonstration of the intellectual bankruptcy of materialism, Dawkins’ book hits the spot nicely!

    So philosophy and what we might call “general revelation” open the possibility up that there might be an external agent which transcends the universe. But if you want to know God is there, you have to look for evidence that he/she/it has made himself known.

  2. Mike Godfrey says:

    Hi Paul,
    Yep we could use the multiverse idea as a means of explaining away the anthropic principle- which I think is why the multiverse idea was postulated in the first place.
    There are problems with it apart from its speculative nature -William lane craig says :

    ‘Roger Penrose of Oxford University has calculated that the odds of our universe’s low entropy condition obtaining by chance alone are on the order of 1:1010(123), an inconceivable number. If our universe were but one member of a multiverse of randomly ordered worlds, then it is vastly more probable that we should be observing a much smaller universe. For example, the odds of our solar system’s being formed instantly by the random collision of particles is about 1:1010(60), a vast number, but inconceivably smaller than 1010(123). (Penrose calls it “utter chicken feed” by comparison [The Road to Reality (Knopf, 2005), pp. 762-5]). Or again, if our universe is but one member of a multiverse, then we ought to be observing highly extraordinary events, like horses’ popping into and out of existence by random collisions, or perpetual motion machines, since these are vastly more probable than all of nature’s constants and quantities’ falling by chance into the virtually infinitesimal life-permitting range. Observable universes like those strange worlds are simply much more plenteous in the ensemble of universes than worlds like ours and, therefore, ought to be observed by us if the universe were but a random member of a multiverse of worlds. Since we do not have such observations, that fact strongly disconfirms the multiverse hypothesis. On naturalism, at least, it is therefore highly probable that there is no multiverse.’

    There are so many things to my mind that show that God is there from looking at natural theology,apart from special revelation,that there is a coherence between special revelation and the world around us.

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