Aliens, Faith, and the Universe

Dec 12, 2018

Do scientific discoveries prove God doesn’t exist? If the universe is complex and must have a creator, then by the same logic, mustn't God have been created as well? If alien life exists, what does that mean for the gospel story? This week on Ask Away, Drs. Vince and Jo Vitale discuss questions submitted by listeners on science and faith.

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Transcript



Note: Ask Away is produced to be heard, not read. We strongly encourage you to listen to the audio. Transcripts are generated using a combination of speech recognition software and human transcribers, and may contain

Michael Davis: Hello and welcome to another episode of Ask Away with Vince and Joe Vitale. I am your host, Michael Davis. We are learning more and more about the workings of the universe at a pace that would boggle the mind of a person born only a hundred years ago. As we uncover more and more, the biblical account of creation and the makeup of the universe seems to be at odds, at best, or contradictory, at worst. A large study of 26,000 people conducted in 24 countries found that 47 percent of people believe that there is life on other planets. Many believe that the discovery of extraterrestrial life would be the death nail for Christianity. Is this true? Does a deistic view of God make much more sense in light of science and in light of a growing belief that we are not alone in the universe. But before we get started, Vince, could you tell us a little bit about our upcoming Understanding and Answering Islam conference happening January 11th through the 12th of the Zacharias Institute in Atlanta, Georgia.

Vince Vitale: This is always one of our annual highlights. We host an understanding and answering Islam conference every year. This will be the sixth year that we're doing it and I'm especially excited about the theme of this year. It's the theme of freedom. Such a timely topic and the understanding of freedom within an Islamic worldview and a Christian worldview is very different. So, we'll be looking at that both theoretically, but we'll also really be looking at that in terms of the practical implications of living out these different world views with respect to freedom and what it can look like to talk about these things in a way that's effective, in a way that's respectful, in a way that builds good relationships with people that think differently than you. So, that's January 11th to 12th, right here at the Zacharias Institute. Very much hope you can join us.

Michael Davis: Okay. Let's jump into the first question. This question comes from Dan. Is it true that the universe is expanding and accelerating currently at a very high speed? I think that the Bible doesn't explicitly mention this, that it is currently expanding, the Bible actually seems to be silent about it, but science has proven this to be true. If science is right, does this discredit the Bible?

Vince Vitale: Dan, I'm really glad you asked this question, both about the specific point you're asking about, but also in general, this last part of your question, if science is right, does this discredit the Bible? I feel like that's something that many of us have worried about before. You're watching the news, there's some sort of new scientific discovery and our instinct can sometimes be to think, oh no, will this scientific discovery be bad for God? I've actually come to have the exact opposite reaction and I'd like to commend that to you. Generally, whenever science is right about something, whenever science finds out something new about the universe, for me, that actually confirms the reality of God rather than in any way pushing against him. I think only God explains why we have an ordered regular universe that can be explored in a scientific way and can, therefore, lead to us finding out scientific truths.

So, whenever you see a new scientific discovery in the papers, on the news, you shouldn't be thinking, oh no, this might be bad for God. You should be thinking, wow, how awesome is my God that he could create a universe that's so ordered and so regular that we could actually investigate it and through the scientific method and, looking at patterns, we can perform experiments that lead to truth. In a random, unordered universe, you would never expect that to be possible, but you would if you have a God who ordered the universe in a way that would allow it to be coherent and for us to investigate it. So, next time you see a new discovery on the news and it's scientific, praise God and say this points to him, not the opposite.

The other thing I would say, just as we get started here is always be cautious of ever letting a scientific discovery or a scientific conclusion have a big impact on your theology or in any way undermine or change your theology. Hear me when I say this, the vast majority of scientific conclusions, throughout history, that, at one time, have been understood to be the consensus of the scientific community have now been overturned. That doesn't mean that some element of truth from those previous theories hasn't made their way into new theories, but the reality is that science is constantly disproving itself. That is the nature of the scientific enterprise. And so whenever there's a scientific discovery, it is very likely that that scientific hypothesis in its current form is not going to withstand the test of time, however, the Bible, the theology that you find in the words of scripture, which are given by a God who is the same yesterday, today and forever, they stand the test of time in the way that a finite scientific conclusion made by fallible human beings never could. So, never let your science lead your theology. Sometimes science will help to clarify theology and we thank God for it, but we never let it lead our theology and we never have theology following science.

Jo Vitale: I also think your question is a fascinating one. You know, just assume it's true. Assume the universe is expanding, would that discredit the Bible? Like you say, this is a claim that the Bible seems to be silent about. It raises some interesting questions for us. Firstly, I think the only sense in which a claim like that could actually discredit the Bible would be if the Bible was claiming the opposite, not if the Bible was silent on the question. Now, when you look at the text of the Bible itself, I don't think that is what we find. You know, some people will point to Psalm 104 where it says the Lord wraps himself in light, as with a garment, he stretched out the heavens like a tent.

And you know, people debate around this language, what does it mean when it says he's stretched out the heavens? Does that mean ... You know, is that referring to expansion or is that talking about a sort of permanent state in which the stars are held in one place. Fascinating questions about the use of language and poetry here, but I think to try and draw upon this text to make scientific conclusions is actually to miss the point of the Psalm entirely, because this Psalm, like many other texts in the Bible is not intended as a scientific textbook to tell us the precise mechanisms through which God has created the universe. Rather, this is poetic language to tell us, hey, there's a creator God who set things up in the first place and who's in control of the universe and we don't need a God of the gaps that we plug in every time we don't understand something, because God is the agency behind everything that we see in the universe and the same way that later on in that Psalm he says ... It says, he set the earth on its foundations, it can never be moved.

Now, should we read that and think, oh my goodness, but we know that the earth is spinning, so how can this be? It contradicts Psalm 104 where nothing is moving, but that's obviously not the point is it? It's saying that God is the one who established it and it's within his control and nothing can shake the earth that God isn't ultimately allowing to happen. It's talking about a bigger framework of a God, who's who's behind the mechanisms that we find in our naturalistic world, not a God who is deistic or doesn't care about them or is removed from our reality and things just happen to us randomly. Now, secondly, not only would I say the Bible doesn't disagree with this idea of universe expansion, but also the fact that the Bible is silent about something and I think we need to be very careful to read more into silence then we should.

So, we really need to ask that bigger question of what is the Bible intended for? Should it be the case that the Bible has something to say about everything that relates to the life that we're living and the world that we're in? I don't think so. I don't think the Bible is intended to be an encyclopedia for us, where we go and can look up everything about the natural world. You know, the Bible doesn't mention Koala bears, which, in one sense is kind of a shame, because I love Koala bears. They're awesome. Recently ...

Vince Vitale: They make a real cute sound too. I didn't know that.

Jo Vitale: Right? They do. They're just adorable. Recently got acquainted with a Koala bear. Tried to smuggle it home, but I wasn't allowed to take it from Australia. But that's besides the point. The point is like Koala bears are great. And the Bible could've said something about Koala bears, but it doesn't. Why? Because it doesn't have bearing on the particular story that is trying to be communicated.

Vince Vitale: Did you mean that pun?

Jo Vitale: What pun?

Vince Vitale: That it doesn't have ...

Jo Vitale: Bearing?

Vince Vitale: Bearing.

Jo Vitale: Oh. No, I didn't, but it's so good. My dad would be so proud.

Vince Vitale: You've inherited it from your dad. You don't even mean to do it.

Jo Vitale: Oh, wow. That's just amazing. Anyway, sorry listeners, I'm so sorry. The point is, what is the Bible for? It's to tell us about the purpose of life as God intended for us to live it. It tells us about the one who made us. It tells us what we were made for. And it gives us a story of how God has been at work throughout history in the world with the ultimate revelation of Jesus Christ. There's a lot that's not gonna be included in that, but that's okay. The Bible isn't trying to do everything, but it's trying to give us enough to lead meaningful lives by and to point us towards the one that we were made for, God.

Vince Vitale: Dan, getting to your specific question about is it true that the universe is expanding and accelerating at a high speed? Science does seem to be implying that the universe is expanding in size. You can kind of think of it like a balloon being blown up. And not only that, but that it's expanding more rapidly, the more it expands. It's kind of an amazing thought, but the cosmological constant or sometimes known as dark energy, it's known as a kind of anti-gravity force and it makes the universe expand at a faster rate the more that it expands. And unless scientists are radically wrong about the amount of mass in the universe ... And, again, scientists have been radically wrong plenty of times before, so we don't wanna take this as definitive, but unless they're wrong about that, then by natural means the universe is not going to collapse back in on itself and contract at any point.

And so the picture that results from this, is that you have this increasingly expanding universe, but if you trace that expansion back in history that you eventually wind up with an utterly dense singularity, a single point at the beginning, which exploded into the universe. Now that's interesting that there was a beginning according to what science is saying right now. A hundred years ago, most scientists did not believe that. They thought the universe was just always as it was. They didn't think that at some point it came into existence, but actually this doesn't point against the Christian faith, it actually points to the Christian faith, because this idea of, in the beginning, seems to go here really well with the first words of the Bible and, actually, Stephen Hawking, explaining about how some of the scientific community initially opposed these findings about the universe having a beginning.

He writes about a physicist, Fred Hoyle, in particular, one of the 20th century's most significant scientific thinkers. He originally resisted this idea of the universe having a beginning because it seemed to cohere so well with the Bible and in an interview, he actually related it to the idea of a party girl, he said, jumping out of a cake. He said it just wasn't dignified or elegant, right? He didn't necessarily have a strong scientific argument against it, but it couldn't be that actually the Bible had been right all along, that there had been a beginning to the universe and Robert Jastrow, NASA astronomer and physicist puts this extremely well. He says, "For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the mountains of ignorance. He is about to conquer the highest peak. As he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries." And interestingly Hoyle later began to look at the design and the universe in particular, the fine tuning of the universe, and I don't know that he ever came to faith, but he did say that it left him greatly shaken.

Michael Davis: So, let's get to our next question. This is from Benji. The watchmaker argument states that, like a watch, the universe is complex and therefore must have a creator. By the same logic, mustn't God also have been created?

Vince Vitale: Thanks for raising this Benji. I really like this argument because it's just so simple and accessible. You know, William Paley, 18th century Christian, British apologist, and he said, you're walking through a field and you stumble upon a watch and you open up the watch and you see all the gears turning and you see the intricacy of the way the functionality of it works. He says, it wouldn't be rational to think that that watch was just there forever or that it just somehow emerged naturally. No, you would think someone intelligent created this watch and then he said, when you look at the universe, when you look at the world as a whole and all the different features of the universe, we should have the same reaction. And I find that many people do have that reaction. Many people, when I ask them, do you believe in God, they may not have a good understanding of who God is or what God has done, but they look around at the universe and they're able to say, well, yes, of course I believe in some type of God, otherwise how did all this get here and how did it get here in such an intricate and well designed way?

Now this argument, this watchmaker argument that you're referencing, it came under some attack after the writings of Charles Darwin, because then people said, well, maybe the world is not so much like a watch. Maybe it's more like a plant. See, if you were walking through that field and you stumbled upon a plant, you wouldn't initially, immediately say, oh, it must have been designed here specifically. You might have said, well, maybe it just emerged from the natural processes and people said, well, maybe that's the way to think about the universe and so maybe you don't need a designer in the same way.

There's an interesting back and forth here between different worldviews, but this prompted further pursuit of different types of design arguments about the universe and one of the ones which is most significant at the moment is called the fine tuning argument. This looks, not just at features of the universe within the history of the university, but it goes all the way back to the fundamental parameters of the universe, at the beginning, that allowed for this universe to ultimately be one that could produce life. And when scientists, not just Christian scientists, but scientists in general, begin to look at what it must have taken in order for those parameters to be precisely tuned in such a way that life could be possible, not just life on the planet earth, not just life as we know it, but any form of life, anywhere in the universe, they come to some incredible, incredible probabilities.

Sir Roger Penrose, emeritus professor at Oxford, he estimates that the overall difference that you could have is less than one part in 10 to the power of 10 raised and turned again to the power of 123. I mean, that's such a ridiculous number. It's like barely worth even talking about. But to give you an idea, if you were to write out all of the zeros that would be necessary in order to print that percentage, even if you turned all the matter in the universe into paper, you would have far too little paper to write the required number of Zeros. You would need more zeros than there are particles in the universe. And then Sir Fred Hoyle, the late Cambridge astronomer, I really liked this analogy that he gave. He said, the probabilities are something like a tornado blowing through a junk yard and just happening to produce a perfect Boeing 747 airplane.

The question is, could that have really happened by chance? Or, must that have been the design and the intention of an intelligent being? The analogy I often like to give is imagine that somebody won the lottery like 20 straight times, 40 straight times, 100 straight times. At some point, if you were being rational, you would have to say this couldn't just be by chance. You would start an investigation into fraud. You would think that in some way someone must be arranging this system. And what scientists are telling us is that this is exactly what's going on in the universe. One winning of the lottery after another, after another, after another. At some point, and I think we're well beyond that point, we have to say this could not have just been chance. This must've been the intention of an intelligent being who arranged the system.

Jo Vitale: Benji, I really liked where you've connected this argument around the watchmaker and fine tuning to the question of where does God then come from. Actually this question of who created God, if you go online on Google, it is the most googled questions about God and so it's the one that everybody's asking. I guess the logic would be, well, you know, if we say that God is uncreated, how is that any different from a scientist saying, well, maybe the universe is uncreated. Like, why plug God in there if you can't plug the universe in there? What Vince has been arguing is that actually the point is no one's particularly holding to that theory anymore, that the universe just exists and has existed eternally. Everything seems to point towards a beginning in the first place, but I also think using the same logic here doesn't actually work, because when we do that, we're making a category mistake, because the thing about the universe is everything within the universe, the things that make it up, they're all contingent, which basically means that they all are caused by something else and therefore we need to account for what has caused them.

The difference with God, if God exists, is that he isn't a contingent being. He's actually a necessary being. Within his nature, he's outside of time. He's not made up of things that need accounting for and therefore we don't have to give an account for him. And that's not actually just ... It sounds like a cop out, but actually it's a completely different category that we're talking about. That's why Christians are very clear on the fact, we don't believe in a created God, we believe in an uncreated God, and that's not just a sort of new response Christians are trying to come up with to wiggle their way out of the most popular question on Google. This is what the ancients understood going way back. You know, even when you look at the Athanasian creed and the early Christian creeds, we talk about the Father who was neither made nor created nor begotten by anybody.

He's not a dependent God. He himself is the source of life. And when we think about a God like that, a God who is beyond contingent things, who is necessary, who is complete within himself, not made up of pieces that need explaining away, it begins to make sense of why not just the bigger picture of the universe, why it's finely tuned the way it is, why we see the sort of systems and regularity that we see within it, but, also, it makes sense of us as well. If we're made in the image of a God like that, suddenly things about ourselves begin to make sense. So, for example, if he is an eternal God, it makes sense of the fact that we, as beings, are beings that long for eternity because we believe in a God who set eternity within the human heart.

If this is a God who is relational and personal in his very nature, it makes sense of why we, too, are relational and personal in the way that we make meaning out of life and relate to one another. If this is the God who has a rational mind in order, it makes sense of why we are always looking for patterns in nature, even as scientists, where we're expecting things to go by a certain order. It's why we trust our minds. We believe them to be truth orientated. So, there's so much about the way that, not just the big picture universe is set up, but the way we're set up as well that coheres with this idea of a God who is necessary in his being, who is eternal, who is personable, who is rational.

Vince Vitale: And one other thing to say about this part of the question and, listen carefully to this, because it gives a slightly complicated, is you don't actually need an explanation of your explanation in order for your explanation to be a good explanation.

Jo Vitale: Can you say that one more time?

Vince Vitale: You don't actually need an explanation of your explanation in order for your explanation to be a good explanation.

Michael Davis: Do you have an Advil? My head hurts.

Vince Vitale: But I'll make it very simple though, right? Like, Newton is performing experiments and he had really good experimental evidence for gravity. So, he posits gravity and he says, I believe gravity exists. That's the explanation of what he was seeing. But if someone then came to him and said, well, where did gravity come from? He could just say, I have no idea. I don't have a clue. I have no idea where gravity came from. It's still a really good explanation of what I'm observing, so I should believe in it.

Michael Davis: Right.

Vince Vitale: If you actually needed an explanation of your explanation in order for your explanation to be a good explanation, you would always need that. So, you posit something, you have a piece of data, you find an explanation for it, but then you need an explanation of that explanation and an explanation of the following explanation, et cetera, going back to an infinite regress of explanations, meaning that the entire scientific enterprise would be undermined, because you could never adequately explain anything unless you went through an infinite series of explanations of the explanations for that thing. So, just because you have a good explanation of something doesn't mean you need a further explanation of that. So, you actually, as a Christian, you don't even need to answer this question. If we look at the universe we see it's incredibly, finely designed. God is an excellent explanation of that fact.

If someone then says, where is God from? You can just say, I have no idea, and that's a rational explanation to say. Now we have more to say, as Jo has said, and, one of the things we have to say, is that we don't posit that God had a beginning. It is things that had a beginning that require an explanation. The universe had a beginning, therefore, it must be explained. God never had a beginning, therefore he doesn't require an explanation in the first place. So, we have more to say, but it's interesting also to note that the question itself is a little bit unfair because you don't need an explanation of your explanation in order for that explanation to be a good explanation.

Jo Vitale: Gotta love philosophy, hey.

Vince Vitale: Other thing I think is interesting here, not to dizzify anymore, but, you know, this idea of creation, Ex nihilo, we talk about God creating out of nothing and I think sometimes those who don't believe in God think that's a really odd concept, but, again, criticism without alternative is empty. Something I often say, you have to think about it from an atheistic perspective as well. If science is showing that the universe had a beginning, then what's the alternative? As a Christian, I think God created out of nothing. In other words, I don't think he used prior material in order to create the universe. He created out of nothing material and then material universe came into existence, but from an atheistic perspective, what would I have to say? I'd have to say he not only created out of nothing, but he created from nothing. That there literally not God, but there literally was nothing and then out of the nothing erupted this enormous, intricate universe. To me, creation from nothing is even more radical than the idea of creation out of nothing.

Michael Davis: Could you explain that to me? I'm joking. Sorry. Okay. Let's get to our final question from Joey. I was wondering what it would mean for Christianity if you introduced extraterrestrial intelligent life. Let me provide context. A friend who went to a Christian college asked a theology professor what it would take for him to doubt his faith. He replied, if humanity met intelligent life, it would mean, for him, that humanity wasn't special and that a God that would assert that it is, yet there are other special beings out there, would prove to him that the Bible would be false. So, how's the Bible account for a circumstance like this?

Jo Vitale: Joey, this is a great question. You've always got to love a question about aliens. So, thank you for bringing that in. In some ways I find this a really fascinating question because it reminds me of the question that actually I hear a lot in Q & A's, which is that there's something off or limited about God's love for an individual because there are so many other human beings. So what I hear people say all the time is, well I know that, you know, people say God loves me, but how can he really love me when there are so many billions of people in the world, as if it's sort of watered down the love or made it less special because it's shared out between everyone. And I ... It reminds me a little bit of how, you know, kids, like if there's another child born, the first child really reacts badly or lashes out because they feel like I'm not special anymore, I'm not special to my parents, but I think we look at it that way because our own ability to love is so limited.

As human beings, we're not very good at love. We can't even love another single person perfectly. We don't have the capacity or the time or the ability to do that. But God's love is different. God's love is not limited. God himself defines love. God is love. And, therefore, as a Christian, one of the things we hold to that's so beautiful about the message of the Christian faith is that God's love for you isn't watered down in any sense just because he loves other people. He can perfectly love you. His love for you can be very intentional and unique and distinctive and special between the two of you, even while he's loving everybody else at the same time and, therefore, if that is true of other human beings, I also don't see why that couldn't be the case, hypothetically, if there were other intelligent life out there.

Now I'm not saying one way or another whether there is, I have no reason to particularly think there is given the probability of how miraculous it is that life even exists on this earth. Maybe, probability wise, there's a very slim chance of that. On the other hand, I also believe in a God of the miraculous, a God who is creative, a God who sustains life and does wonderful things with it all the time. So, another part of me says, well, why not? Why couldn't God, if God desired to create other beings? Would that have any reflection on his love for me or make humanity less special just because he creates other special beings? I don't really think so. I also think, biblically, if you want to talk about the fact that God creates other beings, we already know he has, because he's made angelic beings. There's a spiritual realm. So, we're already saying there's more than just humanity out there anyway. So, if there's other forms of intelligent life in terms of the spiritual and angelic beings, then hypothetically, why not? Now, I'm not saying one way or the other, I just don't know, but I don't think the existence of aliens one way or the other would lead me to throw out the Bible or my Christian faith or say that, therefore, it means that humanity isn't special to God.

Vince Vitale: That's really good. I think we think of love as comparative. So our instinct is that we're only special if we're better than others. And it's really a lack of understanding of the idea of grace, that God's love for each of us is unique and extravagant and is not comparative. God's love for me or for you doesn't mean that he thinks we're better than other beings that do exist or that might exist and, like Jo said, the same as a loving parent looking at the children, that love for each child is unique and is special and it's not because one child is better or worse than the other or because the parent is comparing the relative merits of the different children. I think there's an interesting bias in this reasoning, sometimes, this idea that intelligent life would discount or disprove God. Sometimes people want to say that, if intelligent life is out there, then that would disprove God. Then God doesn't exist, but if there's not intelligent life out there, the same folks are not as quick to say that that confirms God's existence.

There's actually something called the Fermi paradox. And what it says is that, given that we do live in a fine tuned universe, given that we do live in a universe that is conducive to life and, given how big that universe is, there actually should be quite a lot of life, just probabilistically in the universe and if that's the case, there's no reason to think that our level of technology would be the highest of them. Say you put us somewhere in the middle, the probability of us not having encountered that other intelligent life is quite low. So, there's this paradox that emerges where, scientifically, many people think probabilistically, given the fact that we live in a life conducive universe, there should be a lot of life out there, therefore we should have encountered some of that life, but, in reality, we haven't encountered any of that life.

I actually think that, if that is true, it's quite confirming of God's existence. If it's just a natural universe and all we have to work with is the probabilities, then what this is saying is that there should have been a lot of intelligent life that we've encountered, but if God exists, then he's able to arrange things however he wants and he can arrange things such that he created this universe for a specific type of being, a specific type of people and maybe he put just those people, finite and fragile as they are, on this little corner of the universe, in part to show them that amidst all of the grandeur of the universe, his love can still be for things that are very small and even fallen and finite and fallible. That's quite a beautiful story to me and that's something you can explain if God exists because he can choose for there to be one life form, just like he could choose for there to be many life forms, whereas actually if you take the science seriously and just think about it probabilistically, you might think that the opposite would be the case.

Jo Vitale: I think, again, this question is another one that rotates around that question of if the Bible is silent about something, does it therefore discredit the Bible if it's shown to be a reality. You know, the Bible doesn't say anything about even intelligent life outside of this planet earth, but I don't think the existence of that life one way or the other would discredit the Bible anymore than the existence of Koala bears does. I have to get them back in there. So, you know, great question. Fascinating, hypothetical question for us to wrestle with, but I don't think one way or the other it's gonna make a difference to the reality of a God who loves us and made us.

Michael Davis: What do you guys think or do you think that the origins of this comes from a ... I know in Contact, Carl Sagan's novel, he has the kind of crazy fundamentalist Christian that blows himself up trying to prevent the spaceship from going to make contact. It seems like the scientific side feels like that all they need to do is find life on Mars and then said, okay, Christianity has been disproven. There we go. And even Carl Sagan's fiction said that we would rebel against it by blowing ourselves up. I think it's a really interesting, but, in a sense, funny way of looking at it because as Jo said, not only are we open to the possibility of other intelligent life, we absolutely believe in it. It is ... If we believe in the Bible, we believe in it.

We believe there are angels and demons. So, you know, not only are we open to the possibility of it, we're willing to put our hands up and say yes, there is other intelligent life. We're not sure exactly where it is, but we're willing to affirm the proposition. So, the idea that coming to find out that something we already believe is true in some way wreck our faith is quite funny. And it's also interesting to me how, maybe I've mentioned this before, but when I was a grad student in Oxford, I lived with other grad students, incredibly brilliant people. Three out of four of them believed in ghosts. We had this conversation one night, I couldn't believe it. And three out of four of them believe in ghosts. They didn't think there was anything particularly odd about believing that they were intelligent beings other than the type that we normally interact with. But as soon as a Christian, I make the claim about angels and demons, I'm the weirdo. But the reality is that if you're getting into those deep conversations with people, we all have some of these beliefs. We all have this instinct that maybe we're not alone in reality and, you know, I think, first and foremost, that points to the existence of God himself.

Jo Vitale: I think it's sad that that's the assumption now because I think it's playing off this idea that Christians have a fear based faith. And I just think, you know what? We don't have anything to be afraid of. God is bigger than all these things. We don't need to panic about the next big discovery and if it's gonna shake everything up. I'm excited for the things that we're discovering, because I think we're thinking God's thoughts after him. God is the ultimate scientist and we have the privilege of getting to explore and discover so many awesome things about His universe. But as Christians we don't need to be afraid like, oh, the foundation that we're standing on I think is firm and solid and so, yeah, let's not be people who are afraid or let those in the scientific community believe that of us either, because we have ... There's so much we stand for and there's good reasons why you believe and so we don't need to let other people tell a narrative about ourselves that just isn't true.

Michael Davis: Well guys, we are out of time. Vince, sum it up for us.

Vince Vitale: Well, I hope this episode has been affirming to you out there who really enjoy science and also to those of you out there who maybe sometimes get daunted by science and scientific discoveries. The next time there's a scientific discovery, get excited about it, grab that paper as fast as you can, praise God for it, praise God for his creativity and know, with confidence, that science itself, the very enterprise that allowed for that discovery is only made possible because we have a God that cared enough about us to order the universe with regularity. Only God explains that. Only God explains how this universe could be conducive for life and maybe even only God explains why there is potentially so little life in this universe. We might expect there to be much more, but maybe it is the case that God loved us so much that he created a universe that would have us in a meaningful place in it so that we can know that with the great expanse of what could be created, he could still love beings as small and finite as us, such a wonderful thing and something to take much joy in.

Michael Davis: Vince and Jo, thank you guys so much for joining me. Thank you all for listening and we will catch you next time.

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