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Gerardus D. Bouw, Ph.D.


This paper was first published under the title of “Cosmic Space and Time” more than twenty years ago.  I came upon it in my files and was struck by its timelessness.  The criticisms leveled at the big bang model of the universe then, still apply today.  Though a couple of them some astronomers may claim to be solved, yet there is still deeply divided opinion on the nature of the solutions for those allegedly solved problems.


—G. Bouw, 12 November 2003



Abstract:  This paper critiques the big-bang theory of modern cosmology on the grounds of the initial value problem, entropy, initial expansion rate, matter and antimatter abundance, star and galaxy formation, interpretation of the cosmic redshift phenomenon, the missing mass, uncertainties in the Hubble constant, quasar distribution, synthesis of elements, and the Schwartzschild radius of the universe. 


          Pick up any contemporary review article by an evolutionist on the subject of cosmology and you will be impressed by the assured certainty with which the processes and ages of the universe and its constituents are known.  But below the popular surface, in the muddled language of the technician, there lurks a different story.  There are a number of problems with which modern cosmological theories, despite their sophistication, have been unable to cope.  Certainly, there is no comprehensive evolutionary view of the universe which can escape super-miraculous elements which point to the Creator.

          The most highly favored cosmological model today is the big-bang theory.  The theory itself resulted from the observation that almost all faint (and therefore, presumably distant) galaxies appear to be receding from the earth at speeds which increase with their distance (i.e., faintness).  Starting from trigonometric parallaxes and passing through Cepheid variable stars to brightest galaxy cluster members, man has constructed a cosmic distance scale.  The resulting distance scale involves billions of light years and it has allowed a more of less linear relation to be developed between a galaxy’s redshift (presumed a measure of the galaxy’s speed away from the earth along the line-of-sight) and the galaxy’s distance.  The slope of the resulting line is called the Hubble constant and its inverse, which has units of time, is taken as a measure of the age of the universe.  Such an extrapolation backwards in time implies that al the matter in the universe was once concentrated into a single point and that the universe expanded from that point.  This explosion of all matter from a single point (called the singularity) is called the big-bang. 


Initial value problem


          The most unmentionable of the problems associated with the big-bang is its ultimate origin.  Whence is all the material that makes up the universe?  The mathematical models avoid dealing with this most fundamental problem by starting the cosmos at some time (of the order of 10-44 second) after time zero, and starting it at some size (variously at either 10-33 or 10-13 cm) greater than size zero.  But this merely begs the question.  The Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle (that a particle’s position and momentum, or energy and time, cannot be known to utmost accuracy) is invoked as an excuse; but this means that the principle should exist independent of matter, since it existed before anything else existed.  Yet the uncertainty principle is expressible only in terms of created matter:

ΔE Δt ħ


where E is energy, t is time, and ħ is Planck’s constant, h/2π.  The uncertainty principle can also be expressed in terms of position, x, and momentum (mass times velocity) p:


Δx Δp ħ.


          Invoking the Heisenberg uncertainty principle to account for the origin of the universe is thus invoking the old question of which came first, the chicken or the egg and is devoid of any logical answer without the Creator.


Entropy problem


          Allied with the question of the ultimate origin of the universe is the problem of entropy.  Entropy, expressed as the Second Law of Thermodynamics, says that a disordered mess such as the initial state of the big bang should stay a disordered mess rather than become an orderly universe.  Evolutionists attempt to get around the problem of entropy by pointing out that the total entropy of the universe remains constant as long as the universe expands adiabatically; but this is trivial, since to assume that the universe expands adiabatically is to assume that entropy remains constant in the first place.  In other words, the evolutionist argument is: “Look, if we assume entropy stays constant, we find that entropy stays constant!”


Miraculous expansion rate


          Let us, for the moment, assume the big-bang model is correct.  In that case, the universe exploded into existence some ten to twenty billion (109) years ago.  Still we cannot escape the miraculous, for, as Robert Dicke has written:


          If the fireball had expanded only 0.1 percent faster, the present rate of expansion would have been 3 x 103 times as great.  Had the initial expansion rate been 0.1 percent less and the Universe would have expanded to only 3 x 10-6 of its present radius before collapsing.  At this maximum radius, the density of ordinary matter would have been 10-12 gm/cm3, over 1016 times as great as the present mass density.  No stars could have formed in such a Universe, for it would not have existed long enough to form stars.[1]


Considering that modern evolutionists maintain that the universe arose from a chance fluctuation, as mentioned above, then that had to have been some special fluctuation.  But then, there are those who maintain that if it had not happened that way, we should not be here to observe it.  Hypocritically, the same people will not allow creationists to argue the anti-parallel of that argument, namely, that the presence of design in the universe argues for the existence of the Designer. 


Faraday rotation


          Most of the big-bang models predict that equal amounts of normal matter and antimatter arose from the initial creation.  Yet the universe appears to be constituted almost entirely of normal matter; at least, that is the evidence from radio astronomy.  If a radio wave travels through a magnetic field, then the wave’s plane of polarization is rotated by that field.  Such a rotation is termed Faraday rotation and occurs in such a way that the polarization plane is curled in one direction if the field is due to koinomatter (normal matter) and the opposite direction if the field is due to antimatter.  Reinhardt[2] observed that the rotation of the plane of polarization of radio waves from celestial sources was primarily in one direction.  This indicates that the universe is made up primarily of one type of matter; presumably, normal matter.  There are some theories, however, which have been proposed to account for the apparent lack of antimatter in the universe.  The best of these require that the universe be expanding evenly in two directions and at a different rate in the third direction,[3] but this is not observed to be the case.[4]


Star formation


          The big-bang has other problems, too.  Evolutionary models have never been successful in accounting for the formation of a single star, let alone a whole galaxy or even a cluster of galaxies.[5]  Virtually every model in vogue today, which attempts to account for such objects, assumes that they were formed from the collapse of certain density irregularities postulated to be present in the early stages of the big-bang.  Without such an assumption, the physics of collapsing gas clouds would not allow for the formation of objects even remotely resembling the major constituents of the universe.  A number of explanations have been proposed to account for such density irregularities, including magnetohydrodynamical “pinch” effects,[6] but the existence of the required cosmic magnetic field is in doubt and the 3-degree Kelvin black body radiation reveals no evidence for any significant clumps of matter at the time believed to be about a million years into the evolution of the big-bang.4 


Red shift problems


          Each of the above speculations on the part of evolutionists has assumed that the Hubble constant is indicative of a real expansion.  But for more than three decades Halton Arp has been finding objects which contradict the Hubble expansion.[7]  Arp found a statistical correlation between the sky positions of quasars and bright, nearby galaxies.  Furthermore, he has noted that if quasars are local objects, then they cannot result from being thrown out of the nuclei of galaxies.  Otherwise, we should then observe as many blue shifts as redshifts; but only redshifts are observed.  Arp also found cases such as NGC 1199 where an object with a redshift amounting to 13,300 km/sec is found located in front of a galaxy with a red shift of only 2,600 km/sec.[8] 


Missing mass


          Another assumption that is buried in the Hubble relation is the assumption that the cosmic distance scale is known.  Underlying this is the assumption that all parts of the universe look alike (the Cosmological Principle).  But if the distance scale, as presently adhered to, is even remotely correct, then there is the problem of the missing mass.[9]  

          The rotation-curves of galaxies are non-Keplerian, indicating that there is 10 to 30 times as much matter in a galaxy than can be accounted for by its luminosity (the amount of light emitted).  For a cluster of galaxies, the discrepancy between the two mass estimates is even worse, ranging from factors of 100 to 500 or more.[10]  If Bouw’s detection of the rotation of the Virgo Cluster of galaxies is correct,[11] (and he now has evidence for rotation of the huge Coma Cluster, also), then from the shape of the resulting rotation-curve, either Newton’s law of gravity breaks down at large distances or else there is a tremendous amount of undetected mass in galaxy clusters.  All in all, considering that there are about nine steps involved in setting up the current cosmic distance scale, each step of which is claimed to be accurate to ten percent; and considering that the pressure is on for huge ages and huge distances to agree with the evolutionary theories of biology and geology, it appears likely that the individual steps may be overestimated and so the actual distances may be only forty percent or less of the quoted distances.11 


Hubble trouble


          Even if the Hubble constant (red shift) is accepted, evolutionists are still not without problems.  The actual value of the constant is tremendously uncertain.  Modern estimates range from 20 km/sec/Mpc[12] to 125 km/sec/Mpc.  For the last several years, any paper quoting a value other than 50 km/sec/Mpc has been rejected for publication in the Astrophysical Journal; but recently, the trend toward a declining value for the Hubble constant has suffered a setback when observations indicate that its value appears more likely to be about 95 km/sec/Mpc.[13] This means that the Hubble age of the universe reverts back to ten billion years as opposed to the 20 billion inferred by the Astrophysical Journal’s figure of 50 km/sec/Mpc.[14] 

          The higher value for Hubble’s constant leads to further problems because, if we assume as do evolutionists that uranium and thorium were produced by some unknown process when the galaxy formed, then using the same argument that is applied to dating of terrestrial rocks and extraterrestrial meteorites, it appears that the Milky Way must be at least 12 billion years old.[15]  Even some stars and star clusters are claimed to be “older” than ten billion years.  Furthermore, the universe should be at least 20 billion years old according to Browne and Berman, who applied the usual age determination assumptions to the rhenium-187 to osmium-187 abundance ratio.[16]  Actually, an age or 29 billion years would more comfortably fit the abundance ratio, according to theory. 

          All this casts doubt on using the Hubble constant as an indicator of age, but as Akridge suggested, the Hubble constant may be purely a measure of the initial density of the universe at creation and thus cannot legitimately be extrapolated backward to give any meaningful age.[17] 


Varshni’s results


          As if the redshift’s problems were not bad enough, the assumption that quasar redshifts are cosmological in scale leads to an interesting conclusion.  Varshni states it this way in his abstract:


          It is shown that the cosmological interpretation of the red shift in the spectra of quasars leads to yet another paradoxical result: namely, that the Earth is the center of the Universe.[18] 


Vashni found 57 groupings among a sample of 384 quasars.  But his groupings are not groups in terms of position in the sky (i.e., clustering); on the contrary, some of the members of Varshni’s groups are located in opposite parts of the sky.  His groups are based on similarities in the appearances of the spectra of the quasi-stellar objects, and coincidentally, their redshift values were similar.  From his study, Varshni concludes that:


assuming the cosmological red shift hypothesis, the quasars in the 57 groups … are arranged on 57 spherical shells with Earth at the center.[19]


          After considering two other alternatives, Varshni finds that he is forced to conclude that if the redshift hypothesis is accepted for quasars, then:


the Earth is indeed the center of the Universe.  The arrangement of quasars on certain spherical shells is only with respect to the Earth.  These shells would disappear if viewed from another galaxy or quasar.  This means that the cosmological principle will have to go.  Also it implies that a coordinate system fixed to the Earth will be a preferred frame of reference in the Universe.  consequently, both the Special and the General Theory of Relativity must be abandoned for cosmological purposes.[20]


          A chance occurrence, you say?  Varshni puts the odds against it at 3 x 1086 to one.  (Note that Varshni’s figure of 3 x 10-85 on his page 4 should be corrected to read 3 x 10-87.)[21]  But removing the cosmological redshift hypothesis for quasars does not necessarily help the evolutionists or the modern acentrists, for the groupings will still exist—in phase space.[22]  Varshni thus concludes that the spectral lines in QSOs are not redshifts at all.

          Perhaps the bulwark for the evolutionist’s evidence for the big-bang is the 3-degree Kelvin black body radiation [now called the cosmic background radiation —Ed.]  The radiation is believed to be due to the light released when electrons and protons combined to form atomic hydrogen about a million years into the course of the big-bang.  The temperature of the universe at the time is calculated to have been about 3,000° Kelvin (about 3,000° C or 5,000° F), and what is purportedly observed today is that 3,000-degree flame redshifted by a factor of z=1,000.  Yet here another curious factor arises.  The redshift of the hydrogen flash is thus 1,000, but the highest redshifts observed thus far are far below ten (and that for a quasar).  Where, then, are the objects with redshifts between 5 and 1,000?  Was the universe devoid of objects for all those billions of years?  And what of the curious “coincidence” mentioned by Clayton,[23] who echoed Hoyle, et al.,[24] that if all the elements were created in situ by nuclear fusion from hydrogen, and if the resulting photons were somehow thermalized, then the temperature of the resulting black-body spectrum would be 3°K?  Actually, Hoyle and his colleagues considered only hydrogen to helium fusion and that not necessarily in situ, but their estimate for the mean density of the universe is probably low, meaning that the error resulting from ignoring these two factors would roughly cancel each other out. 


More miraculous coincidents


          A miraculously-balanced big-bang, a miraculous unexplainable origin, a miraculously-placed earth, contradictory values for the age of the universe as inferred from its expansion rate: is there not end?  Hoyle points to another “coincidence” which happens to be a particular favorite of his.  The nuclei of atoms exhibit energy levels much the same as electrons exhibit in their placement about the nucleus.  Now it happens that carbon-12 has a nuclear energy level at 7.655 MeV and oxygen-16 has a level of 7.119 MeV.  If we accept nuclear fusion to account for the elements (even fusion in situ some 6,000 years ago), then the placement of these two energy levels is noting short of miraculous.  The energy levels themselves are due to properties of the strong nuclear force and the electro-magnetic repulsion between protons.  Change these latter two quantities only slightly and there would result a drastic change in the two aforementioned energy levels.  The change would be such that almost all the atoms that are now carbon-12 would have gone on to become oxygen-16.  The implication is clear, no carbon, no life as we know it.

          Finally, there is one aspect that has not been dealt with in either the evolutionary or the creationist literature as far as the author is aware.  The current literature in astronomy has, for the last ten years, been abuzz with rumors and speculations about black holes.  A black hole is defined as a clump of matter that has been so compacted that its gravitational field has overwhelmed all other forces so that its escape velocity exceeds the speed of light.  Nothing can escape a black hole; at least, not a massive black hole.  For a mass, M, the radius, R, to which it must be compacted in order to become a black hole, termed the Schwarzschild radius is given by:


R = 2 G M/c2


where G is the gravitational constant and c is the speed of light.  According to Dirac’s large number cosmology, there are about 2 x 1078 nucleons in the universe.[25]  At 1.67 x 10-24 gm/nucleon, this yields a total mass for the universe of about 3 x 1054 grams.  The black hole radius of the universe is then about 500 million light years, far less than the currently held radius of 10 to 20 billion light years.  In order to save the big-bang theory, are we then to believe that the universe is exempt from the physics of black holes?  Or else, if we, for example, accept the missing mass as being above and beyond the Dirac cosmology’s mass, giving us a factor of 100 to 500 more to play with, can we conclude anything at all from the Dirac large numbers?  In particular, can we conclude anything then about the age of the universe?




          We have considered only a few of the fundamental problems which modern evolutionists are struggling with in order to hold on to their naturalistic views.  Much of what is critiqued here will be outdated in the years to come.  Such is the nature of science, especially modern science where a theory is considered fruitful if it raises more questions than it answers.  Truly “science falsely so called” (1 Tim. 6:20) is a great description of the knowledge of a natural man:


But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.  ( 1 Corinthians 2:14.)

Ever learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.  (2 Timothy 3:7.)

[1] Dicke, R. H., 1969.  Gravitation and the Universe, (Philadelphia: Am. Philosophical Soc.). 

[2] Reinhardt, M., 1971.  Astrophysical Letters, 8:181. 

[3] Zeldovich, Ya. B., 1970.  J. E. T. P. Lett., 12:307. 

[4] Muller, R. A., 1978.  Scientific American, 238(5):64. 

[5] Jones, B. J. T., 1976.  Rev. of Modern Physics, 48:107. 

[6] Fennelly, A. J., 1980.  Phys Rev. Lett. 44:955. 

[7] Arp, H., 1970.  Astronomical Journal, 75:1.  Also, 1971.  Science, 174:1189. 

[8] Arp., H., 1978.  Astronomy, 6:15. 

[9] This is no longer called the missing mass, it is now known by its various “solutions,” such as “dark matter,” for instance. 

[10] Bouw, G. D., 1977.  Creation Rsrch. Soc. Quarterly, 14:108. 

[11] Bouw, G. D., 1977.  Ibid., p. 17. 

[12] The measure Mpc, megaparsec, amounts to 3.2 million light years.

[13] Hartline, B. K., 1979.  Science, 207:167. 

[14] The value after about 1995 is held to be 75 km/sec/Mpc, which is about twelve billion years. 

[15] Hoyle, F., 1975.  Astronomy and Cosmology, (San Francisco: W. H. Freeman & Co.), pp. 574-577. 

[16] Browne, J. C. and B. L. Berman, 1976.  Nature, 262:197. 

[17] In the opening years of the twenty-first century, astronomers now regard the Hubble constant, resulting from the observed redshift, as indicative of a local expansion rate which is assumed to be higher than average and thus gives a lower age, locally, than is true for the universe as a whole.  This accepts the evidence for a Hubble cosmic expansion value too “young” to produce the “oldest” stars, while taking on faith that if we could determine the Hubble constant our far enough, then we would find that there was enough time, after all. 

[18] Varshni, Y. P., 1976.  Astrophysics and Space Science, 43:3. 

[19] Ibid., p. 8. 

[20] Ibid., p. 8. 

[21] Bouw, G. D., 1980.  Bulletin of the Tychonian Society, in press.

[22] Phase space is a seven-dimensional view of physics.  The usual three dimensions plus time, the fourth dimension, are joined by the momentum of a body expressed along the first three dimensions. 

[23] Clayton, D. D., 1969.  Physics Today, May, p. 28. 

[24] Hoyle, F., N. E. Wickramasinghe, and V. C. Reddish, 1968.  Nature, 218:1124. 

[25] Roxburgh, I. W., in The Encyclopedia of Ignorance, R. Duncan & M. Weston-Smith, eds., 1977.  (N. Y. C.: Pergamon Press), p. 39.