‘Dark matter’ is an essential ingredient to form stars naturally given only standard known physics. ‘Dark matter’ is a hypothetical exotic form of matter, unknown to laboratory physics, which does not interact with or emit light in any way, hence it is invisible to all forms of detection within the electromagnetic spectrum, from radio-waves to gamma radiation. ‘Dark matter’ itself, therefore, is outside of standard known physics. It is made-up stuff that has been given one special property, which is that it gravitates, that is, unlike normal matter, it is a source of gravity only.
Detection of ‘dark matter’
Figure 1: Image of dark matter detected using advanced methods.
But has dark matter been discovered by any direct measurement? That is apart from inferring its existence due to anomalies like galaxy rotation curves where the motions of stars and gases in the arms of spiral galaxies do not follow the expected Keplarian law in line with standard Newtonian physics? No, it has not and that is after 40 years of searching in laboratory experiments. Yet it is believed to exist—a ‘god of the gaps’—and is essential, otherwise many astrophysical observations just do not agree with those expected by application of standard laws of physics. See Fig. 1 for image of dark matter.
Theoretical physicist Mordehai Milgrom has proposed an alternative to dark matter, called Modified Newtonian Dynamics (or MOND) wherein he slightly changes the law of gravitation on the very large-scale of galaxies to solve the problem of galaxy rotation curves and dynamics of galaxies on larger scales. Continue reading
Another reason the Flood could not have been local
Published in Creation magazine 37(4):22-24, 2015.
About 1656 years after the creation of the world, God destroyed all humans, except for eight1 on the Ark that Noah built, and all air-breathing land animals (except those on the Ark) in a great global judgment. Many marine creatures were also destroyed—some 95% of all fossils found are the remains or impressions of creatures who once lived in the sea. We see evidence of this deluge all over the earth, including on the highest mountains. Mt Everest has marine fossils at its peak.
Scripture tells us,
“… when once the long-suffering of God waited in the days of Noah, an ark having been prepared, into which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water. Which antitype now also saves us, baptism (not a putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God through the resurrection of Jesus Christ … .)” (1 Peter 3:20–21, KJ3).2
The Apostle Peter describes our being baptized into Christ’s death as an antitype of the saving of eight in the Ark. The original Greek word ἀντίτυπος (antitypos) has the meaning of a ‘representative’ or a ‘figure’. The dictionary definition of the English word ‘antitype’ is ‘something that is represented by a symbol’. It comes from ‘anti’ meaning ‘opposite’, as well as ‘in place of’, and ‘typos’ an impression like from a die or stamp. So an opposite to the die is a representation or symbol of the original. In short, the Bible makes it clear that the Ark, which saved eight souls through the deluge, is a figure, or ‘type’, of Christ and His salvation. Through entering the Ark, all who responded to Noah’s preaching could be saved from the waters of judgment. Even so, by entering into Christ, the ultimate Ark of salvation, we are saved from the judgment to come. Continue reading
According to some people, denying evolution and believing biblical creation is like saying that NASA faked the Moon landings.
That’s how I sometimes hear people speak of my biblical creation worldview on origins. However, to say that 6-day biblical creation, also known as Young Earth Creation, has any correspondence to the moon-landing-hoax theory, by any measure, is beyond all reason.
NASA did land astronauts in the moon in 1969, and after that. That is a historical fact. The conspiracy theory claims that it was all faked in a Hollywood film studio. This hoax had developed to such a point that NASA used its Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) to take new photographs in 2011 from an altitude of 50 km (31 miles) of the surface of the moon that clearly show astronaut footprints, the lunar rover tracks and spacecraft scorch marks.1
Figure 1. Four images from NASA clearly showing the surface of the moon with astronaut footprints, rover tracks, and scorch marks from the spacecraft used. Source: Ref. 1.
The fact of the moon landing is an historical question for which there is strong supporting evidence. To add to this is the testimony of probably a hundred thousand people involved in the Apollo missions. To cover that up would take a massive deception of gigantic proportions. Continue reading
First it was dark matter,1 then came dark energy,2 followed by dark fluid,3 dark flow,4 and dark radiation5; and now a new entity is suggested for the dark sector of particle physics—dark photons. The dark sector is full of hypothetical entities designed to save the big bang story but it is really just a lot of cosmic storytelling.6
Previously I have argued that dark matter is a sort of ‘god of the gaps’, the ‘unknown god’,7 in astrophysics. It is an unknown invoked to explain the inexplicable,8 which, if you follow the chain of logic, is required to maintain a belief in the big bang paradigm. Its existence is only inferred from the application of known physics to certain observations in the universe.9 Without assuming the existence of some exotic unknown dark matter comprising about 25% of the matter/energy content of the universe10 the standard big bang model would have to be discarded as a total failure.
Dark matter has never been observed in space or in any laboratory experiment.
Now a new observation of four colliding galaxies in the Abell 3827 cluster apparently may shed new light on the conundrum.11 See the four galaxies in the centre of the figure here.
Figure: Approximately real-colour image from the Hubble Space Telescope, of galaxy cluster Abell 3827. The galaxy cluster is made of hundreds of yellowish galaxies. At its core, four giant galaxies are smashing into each other. As the topmost of the four galaxies fell in, it is proposed that it left its dark matter trailing behind, separated from the normal matter. You can’t see the dark matter in this picture because it is ‘dark’; meaning invisible. But its position is allegedly revealed by the gravitational lensing of an unrelated spiral galaxy behind the cluster, whose distorted image is seen as a blue arc, around the group of four central galaxies. Credit: Dr. Richard Massey (Durham University) image. Ref. 12.
Is the big bang evolution story of the Universe really science? And is the big bang a valid starting point to argue that science supports the biblical narrative history from the Genesis account and elsewhere? Can we consider a big bang creation in our apologetics?
Foundations for our apologetics
In apologetics1 we are engaged in a spiritual war, which we fight on a daily basis. We win some battles, we lose some, but we know that the war will eventually be won by God. He has told us that fact. Often however our comrades in arms, i.e. other Christians, may themselves not clearly see the enemy’s tactics. That does not mean they cannot see the enemy but may be they are too close in battle to see the whole war.
Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful. Proverbs 27:6 (KJV)
Sometimes we must criticise what our friends have said in an effort to prevent the enemy from developing a breach in the wall of truth and eventually destroying the foundations. In this case our friends are our fellow Christians who have gotten off the track by absorbing too much of the pagan culture in which they live. Continue reading
Discovery of Kepler-452b
The news media is currently full of the news of the discovery of Kepler-452b, the planet that is supposed to be Earth’s twin.1,2 It was discovered using the satellite-borne telescope, Kepler, where the exoplanet was found to be at a distance of about 1400 light-years. It has a mass about five times that of Earth and diameter about 60% larger, hence a gravity nearly double that of Earth. It has a year3 about 20 days longer than Earth. That makes it the most similar planet to Earth yet and it is located in the habitable zone around its parent star, which is a G-class star, the same class as our sun.
You see pictures (e.g. Figure 1 here) of a planet with oceans and land masses and some even with green vegetation drawn in. But none of these are actual images of the planet. It is too far away for such a thing, even with man’s best telescopes.
Figure 1. Artist conception of the planet Kepler-452b. Clouds, continents and oceans are included, for which there is no evidence. Credit: NASA
Why all the hype? Well, it is the hope of life being found elsewhere. The way it goes is: find an Earth-sized planet in the habitable zone, called the Goldilocks zone—not too hot, not too cold, but just right—the distance from the parent star where water is in its liquid form—detect the presence of water in its atmosphere and that gives you a good chance of finding life.4 Continue reading
Notes of a lecture on starlight and time. Do they present an insurmountable problem for biblical creationists? The lecture was given August 1st, 2015. See Age and Reason Seminar Adelaide for details.
Here is the problem. The universe is truly vast in size, in fact, tens of billions of light-years in size. One light-year is about 10 trillion kms. It is the distance light travels in one year. By taking a literal history from Genesis chapters 5 and 11 you can calculate that the universe is only about 6000 years old. If so, how does starlight get to earth from a distance greater than 6000 light-years? Shouldn’t we only be able to see to a distance of 6000 light-years in the universe?
Is this a brick wall? Does it mean the bible must be wrong? Distances are billions of light-years. Surely that must mean light took billions of years to travel here from the distant cosmos? How do you explain that?
Ok, lets first look at some simple maths.
Distance = Speed x Time
So if you drive your car a distance of 100 kms and travel at 50 km/hr it will take you 2 hours. 10 billion light-years represents a distance in the Universe to some of the most distant galaxies like those pictured here in what is called the Hubble Ultra-Deep Field 2014. Continue reading