Let’s go back to the year 1916. A young and brilliant Albert Einstein was developing his greatest theory, one which would explain the universe, its natural laws and effects. He did not like, however, where his calculations were going. If his theory of General Relativity was true, it meant that the universe was not always around, not eternal. The universe rather, was a certain “age”, and that meant it had a “birthday”, a beginning!
Up until Einstein's theory, most scientists and philosophers assumed the universe had simply, “always been there”, which meant there was no need for a God to create it. But that was all about to change. Einstein later called his own discovery “irritating.” Einstein would have preferred the universe to be self-existent, no beginning, no end—not reliant on any outside cause for its existence. Einstein couldn’t escape the logical implications of his theory:
Anything that has a cause has a beginning.
The universe had a beginning.
Therefore the universe has a cause.
Einstein deduced that the universe was not static, a theory later confirmed by Edwin Hubble who found physical evidence to support Einstein’s theory. Ok, so the universe is expanding. So what?
Now rewind the tape. As we go back in time, the universe begins to get smaller and smaller until you reach a point (which science refers to as the singularity) where there is nothing—not even physical space to put something into! Einstein’s theory, so it seems, left room for two options to choose from: 1. The universe and everything in it simply exploded out of nothing, or 2. Something or someone created the universe.
Einstein knew his theory had great theological and philosophical implications. Since the universe arose from nothing, the cause for the universe must lay outside the realm of space, matter, energy, time. This cause must have unimaginable powerful to create the universe from nothing. This cause must also be self-existent, uncaused, eternal.
This fits exactly what Scripture teaches us, “By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visable” (Hebrews. 12:2). In other words, at God’s command, He made everything without anything to start with!
If you ask them, most people would say they’d have a hard time believing that something could actually appear from nothing. It goes against common sense and everything we’ve learned through science. But, most people are not familiar with the tremendous discovery that Einstein made, and that scientists have reconfirmed this theory over and over again. If more people really gave the origin of the universe serious thought, they might be more inclined to take the idea of God much more seriously. The next time someone asks you why you believe God exists, one simple thing you can say is, “I just don’t believe the universe can appear from nothing. Do you?”
Pastor Adam Barton,