Does Distant Starlight Prove the Universe Is Old?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Revmitchell, May 12, 2014.

  1. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell
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    ....The Assumptions of Light Travel-time Arguments

    Any attempt to scientifically estimate the age of something will necessarily involve a number of assumptions. These can be assumptions about the starting conditions, constancy of rates, contamination of the system, and many others. If even one of these assumptions is wrong, so is the age estimate. Sometimes an incorrect worldview is to blame when people make faulty assumptions. The distant starlight argument involves several assumptions that are questionable—any one of which makes the argument unsound. Let’s examine a few of these assumptions.


    1. The Constancy of the Speed of Light

    2. The Assumption of Rigidity of Time

    3. Assumptions of Synchronization

    4. The Assumption of Naturalism

    http://www.answersingenesis.org/art...al&utm_campaign=facebooktwittergooglelinkedin
     
  2. Winman

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    I believe the speed of light was much faster just a few thousand years ago. There are quite a few secular physicists that believe this as well. They theorize that light might have been billions (yes, billions) of times faster in the recent past. This would easily explain how light from the most distant part of the universe could be here today. It was almost instantaneous if this is true.

    Of course, this theory like others is not without its problems and critics.

    http://www.dailygalaxy.com/my_weblo...n-the-early-universe-todays-most-popular.html
     
  3. Aaron

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    Am reading Starlight, Time and the New Physics by John Hartnett.
     
  4. nodak

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    As ya'll know, I am OEC (not to be confused with theistic evolution) and believe time/speed of light have changed, have some warps in them, etc.

    But I have to say: any scientific theory supporting old earth creationism (and there are many) could also support young earth creationism just by saying the science proves the APPEARANCE of age.

    My personal belief is that God created just as Genesis says, but that time was not then as we know it now, and that in today's time it would have been much longer ago than 6,000 years or so. But it is true God could have created with the appearance of age. I don't think He did, but we aren't going to solve this with science OR with Biblical interpretation.

    All we can do is wait and let God answer our questions some day, if He so chooses.
     
  5. Sapper Woody

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    I personally subscribe to the apparent age theory. I realize that this has some limitations and problems, just like any other theory, the most prevalent is "Last Tuesdayism". But I personally believe that it helps explain the chronological events of the Bible and the geneologies in a simple timeframe while allowing for the appearance of a much older earth. At it's core, we know the earth was created with at least some form of apparent age (unless you believe in some form of theistic evolution), as Adam wasn't created as a baby. With that in mind, I don't believe it's a stretch to say that God created the stars with light having already reached earth.
     
  6. Winman

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    I agree that God could have created the universe to appear old, but my problem is that this seems to make God appear to be misleading. If stars are over about 6000 years light distant (assuming that is the age of creation), we should not be able to see them, but new stars should appear every day as the light finally reaches us. This would reflect the true age of the universe being very young.

    That is why I like the theory of light slowing. First of all, there is real evidence for it, the many hundreds of measurements taken of the speed of light have consistently shown it is slowing without exception. I believe it also fits the "curse" on creation. Just like everything else physical that is wearing out and fading away, light likewise is slowing down and will eventually stop, though that might take a very long time, the slowing of light has flattened out recently according to these studies.

    All interesting, and I am not sure if we will ever be able to prove any theory. I guess we just have to wait and ask Jesus in person. He was the one who created everything, he will be able to tell us how he did it.
     
  7. Greektim

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    I've always made 2 points in these discussions:

    1) the trigonometry used to determine distances is a bit far fetched for me. The angle is so minute, that w/o another form (and I'm not convinced that there are other good methodds) of measurement, the millions or billions are borderline absurd. Imagine 2 people standing next to each other and a 3rd point a mile down the road. the 2 lines leaving your body and running in to the 3rd point are so close to be parallel, that it would be extremely hard to find the slight variation in the angle of departure. They are so close to 90 degrees, that the variation is beyond miniscule. Compound that by a thousand and you have a star millions of light years away.

    2) I always thought of theory of time as relative was intriguing. Since speed is simply the measurement of distance over time, then either the distance changes (?) or time is relative. Some have made that theory based on gravity. It seems as far fetched as light being relative, but some great minds have made this theory seem reasonable based on authoritarianism.
     
    #7 Greektim, May 13, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: May 13, 2014
  8. Winman

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    Yes, they say anything over 60 light years away they are just guessing. They do estimate the average size of galaxies, they believe our galaxy the Milky Way is about one hundred light years across. If this is accurate, then with some accuracy they can estimate the distance to galaxies. The closest galaxy to us besides the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds is Andromeda, which they estimate is 2.5 million light years away.

    [​IMG]

    If you are in really dark unpolluted skies, Andromeda is one of the few galaxies you can see with the naked eye if you know where to look. It is quite easy to see with a pair of binoculars.
     
  9. Sapper Woody

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    I've never had a problem with this. We know that there was some apparent age (again, barring theistic evolution, which I do not subscribe to). We know that God created full grown plants and animals, and even if he made babies and seeds, he didn't start off at conception. Knowing this, there is no difference (IMO) between God making it look as if the earth was just a few years old, and making it look like millions or billions of years old.
    It's all interesting, and I love to study the creation account and theories tied to it. Granted, I typically study it from an apologetic creationist (which is the course title of the course I used to teach in a christian high school), so normally my studies are more geared towards taking information and using it to "prove" creation (why that's in quotations is because I don't believe either creation or evolutionary theory can be proven, a discussion for another day), and less from a simple academic viewpoint. But I still do love learning for learning's sake.

    I am looking at becoming a physics major. When I get my PhD, I'll have all the answers, and I'll let you all know them. :laugh:
     
  10. Revmitchell

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    No it doesn't.
     
  11. just-want-peace

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    Sapper Woody:"(why that's in quotations is because I don't believe either creation or evolutionary theory can be proven, a discussion for another day)"

    My belief exactly! Same evidence, so it just depends on whether you believe God, or science(?)!!

    And if you choose to trust science instead of God, why trust any thing else He said?????
     
  12. Winman

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    Yes it does, because light from a galaxy 2.5 million years away can be seen. We should not be able to see stars more than 6000 light years distant, because the light would not have reached here yet.

    Now, if we saw new stars appearing every day, this would support that the universe was very young, the light just arriving.

    You can say light from galaxies millions of lights years away is not misleading, but that is obviously wrong because it is the very argument science uses against us. It certainly has misled them.

    That's why I do not support this theory. The slowing light theory is much better, because science would have to admit that light could be here from billions of light years away. Much better.
     
  13. Revmitchell

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    Just because our perception is wrong does not indicate God is misleading. That is absurd.
     
  14. Winman

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    Our perception is just what it is, galaxies appear to be millions of light years away. That alone is not the problem, we see stars exploding that are tens of thousands of light years distant. This would mean they exploded before they existed! That is why this theory is said to be misleading.

    Believe me, smart folks have thought this stuff out. The appearance of age is not a real good argument, other arguments are much better.
     
  15. Revmitchell

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    I don't care how many people who think they are smart have thought this out. People have their agenda. Most of it does not include God or wants to understand scripture through the lens of science. I give neither of those agenda's credit.
     
  16. Winman

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    It is not just secular scientists that have difficulty with this theory, people who believe the Bible have difficulty with this theory, that is why there are so many Christians who believe in an old age for creation.

    http://www.godandscience.org/youngearth/appearance.html

    We have lots of folks right here at BB who believe in old age creation, and the distant starlight is one of the major problems that prevents these folks from believing in young earth creation.

    I am on your side, I am a firm young earth creationist, I believe everything was created in six literal 24 hour days as we know them now, and that the universe is about 6000 years old. Nevertheless, I accept the difficulty of this problem.
     
  17. Inspector Javert

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    The light was there before the stars:

    Day ONE: Gen 1:3
    And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
    God creates light itself

    Gen 1:4
    And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.
    Gen 1:5
    And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.
    Evening and Morning are identifiable created realities.

    Day TWO:God creates a firmament to divide the waters above the earth from the waters below the Earth.
    Gen 1:6
    And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. Gen 1:8
    He calls the firmament dividing the two waters "heaven"...and that is the end of another day......
    Gen 1:8
    And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day.


    There is still NO SUN...NO MOON....NO STARS...
    The LIGHT exists,
    "Evening and Morning" exist...

    No celestial bodies to rule them exist.

    Day THREE:God causes dry land to appear along with grasses and the herb bearing seed:
    Gen 1:9
    And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so.

    There are no celestial bodies
    There are no stars
    Gen 1:12
    And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good.
    Gen 1:13
    And the evening and the morning were the third day.
    Light itself exists...
    "Evening and morning exists"...

    There is no Sun, no Moon, no stars at all....none whatsoever.

    Day FOUR:Gen 1:14
    And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years:
    Gen 1:15
    And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so.
    Gen 1:16
    And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.
    Gen 1:17
    And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth,
    Gen 1:18
    And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good.

    We finally have celestial bodies to "rule" the light..........

    light which already existed.
     
    #17 Inspector Javert, May 13, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: May 13, 2014
  18. Inspector Javert

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    What????:confused:
    Who have you been talking too?
    Do you think only godless people think that the notion of God making the Earth "appear old" is unpalatable?

    The argument that God's giving an "appearance" of age is not solely disliked by Godless people...

    Many Y.E.C. (of which I am also one) dislike that and maintain it does indeed make God appear somewhat deceitful...

    Who did you?
    Who made you think that disliking the idea that God would give an "appearance" of age is solely the realm of non-believers????

    I think it makes God seem somewhat distrustful...

    I just conclude instead that the Universe doesn't "look" old at all.
    It actually "looks" (to me) like it's less than 10,000 years old...

    just like the Scriptures say it is....but I tend to agree with Winman. I don't think God gave the Earth the "appearance" of age. I think he made it 6-10 thousand years ago....and it doesn't "LOOK" appreciably older than that.
     
  19. Winman

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    I simply believe everything was happening super quick when God said, Let there be light. It was so fast it was everywhere at once. And this is what even many secular physicists are starting to believe, that light was billions of times faster at the "big bang".

    And the big bang is not completely against scripture, in fact, many scientists objected to the big bang theory at first because it seemed to agree with the Bible. The Bible says God "spread out" the heavens. This is that instant expansion that scientists call the big bang.

    Now, that said, the creation story does not agree with so called "science" in many areas. It says the Earth was created before the Sun, Moon, and stars, there was light before the Sun existed, etc...

    I tend to agree that the appearance of age is a perspective. The Grand Canyon looks old to an evolutionist, he believes it took millions of years for the Colorado River to erode the canyon, I believe it happened in a matter of weeks when the great flood of Noah drained off the Great Plains.

    http://www.creationtoday.org/grand-canyon-proof/
     
    #19 Winman, May 13, 2014
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  20. Inspector Javert

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    ^^^agreed^^^^

    I think the Universe only "looks" old to those who either assume it is, or who accept the premise that it does "look" old.

    When I look at the grand canyon (as you said) I "see" a catastrophic flood, which as near as I can tell took place about 4,500 yrs. ago.

    It doesn't "look" old to me at all.

    In the same way, since God made the light BEFORE the respective stars....than I don't care how fast the speed of light is or whether it is a constant or not....they still "look" to be about 6,000 years old to me :thumbsup: Maybe the speed of light has always been a constant...mayber it hasn't. But the stars will never "look" to be older than 4-days younger than the Universe itself and 3 days younger than the firmament to me.
     

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