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David Lifschultz

In a reply to my paper previously published in the Biblical Astronomer, Dr. Bouw writes that "it is doubtful from the start that the size of the universe can be accurately determined," and that was the main point I was making. Nevertheless, to reinforce that point, I will make a number of comments on Dr. Bouw’s piece.

Genesis 1:16 tells us that at first God created the two great lights, the sun and the moon, and thereafter, it appears, the stars and the planets with their moons. It is very possible that Dr. Bouw’s contention that lights refer to the brightness in relation to the earth, that is they are brighter than stars and planets, is true, but it does not necessarily mean that the sun is smaller than the stars. I could say, however, that if the sun and moon were created first, then they were the greatest lights then, and thereafter when the stars, and planets with their moons were created, the moon was smaller in physical size than other heavenly bodies. These are matters of interpretation and Dr. Bouw’s is a good one. It opens up as a corollary that the sun could be smaller than the stars, as the moon is of the planets, but the Bible does not tell us this.

Dr. Bouw talks about the fact that very sophisticated photographic techniques are used with a telescope to measure the angle of the star in relation to the earth, and that this angular measurement repeats itself in every photograph. I accept that. But even though it repeats itself, our contention is that it could merely be repeating the error of the previous measurements because the margin of error at such a distance is great, and the distance is otherwise unverifiable. But in any event, from a geocentric sense, the measurement is useless, because the line of the triangle used can only be the longest distance measured in a straight line on the earth, and no one says that this small distance is sufficient to accurately shoot the star. (See figure below.)

The heliocentrists maintain the unprovable assumption that the earth revolves around the sun and then uses a line the distance of the earth to the sun doubled, or about 186 million miles. Astronomers believe that angles shot by the telescope are sufficient to measure the stellar distance of the nearest stars. But as I have said, the operating premise of the heliocentrists is unprovable, that the earth revolves around the sun, and the angular measurements at the end of a line drawn on the earth are not wide enough apart to accurately shoot the star.

As I pointed out in my earlier article, it is the trigonometric technique of measuring the closer stars that provides the foundation for making measurements to the stars too far away to measure trigonometrically. The technique used for these farther stars is to establish relationships between the absolute magnitude of the nearest stars’ luminosity in relation to its apparent magnitude, and its distance as measured trigonometrically, and those same magnitudes for those more distant that still can be measured trigonometrically. Now, if these relationships in magnitude were constant, then you could determine distances to those stars that you could not measure trigonometrically but whose absolute and apparent luminosities could be measured. See the previous article for a lengthier description of this process. But, how can we be sure each star’s apparent and absolute magnitudes are equal or constant? We can’t, so this technique of measurement is arbitrary also.

One of the points I made in the last article was that most modern ideas in science, especially where they are unprovable, are not really modern as the high school text books make you think, but were drawn from antiquity. The mentioned oedipal complex came from the play by Sophocles entitled "Oedipus Tyrannus," where Oedipus unknowingly fulfils a curse by killing his father and marrying his mother. It was the bizarre interpretation of Sigmund Freud to assert that this was an unconscious paradigm for all humanity which thought is as unique as it is monstrous. The equality of result in material goods was not originated by Karl Marx but found earlier in Plato’s "Republic."

I also would like to point out in another area of my piece that the calculus of Sir Isaac Newton, which through its use of infinity is logically absurd, was no more accurate than Euclidean geometry but symbolically more complex. It is a fact that Sir Isaac used Euclidean geometry in his projections of the heavenly bodies and not the calculus he invented.

Once again, the point of these papers is to demonstrate that the size of the universe is unprovable, and it could be small as well as large. And the weight of Scriptural references to the sun as the chief heavenly light (Ps. 84:11) could be both in size as well as brightness.