News that U.S. cosmologists might be on the the verge of confirming that they have detected 'primordial gravitational waves', supporting the big bang theory, has led some Southern Baptist scientists to cite such a discovery as more evidence of a divine creator.
According to the Baptist Press, scientists at Baptist universities are hailing the discovery as both a giant step forward for science as well as more proof that the universe is the product of intelligent design rather than blind chance.
"The recent purported detection of gravitational waves serves as further confirmation of Einstein's theory of general relativity and of the nature of the Big Bang itself," Bruce Gordon, an associate professor of the history and philosophy of science at Houston Baptist University, explained to the Baptist Press. "If corroborated by the scientific community, this is a hugely important discovery, and there will probably be some ... Nobel Prizes associated with it."
Gordon, who is a senior fellow at the Discovery Institute, a Seattle-based think tank that plays a leading role in the Intelligent Design movement, explained that the theory of 'inflation' - a sudden enlargement of the universe as envisioned in the big bang theory - requires so much fine-tuning which increases the likelihood that the universe was created by an intelligent designer.
"The energy of the inflationary field has to be shut off with tremendous precision in order for a universe like ours to exist, with inflationary models requiring a shut-off energy precision of at least one part in one hundred thousand trillion trillion trillion trillion and perhaps as much as one part on one hundred billion trillion googol," he explained.
"In short, it's intelligent design no matter which way you turn, and theophobic scientific materialists, once they get past knee-jerk denials, will have to come to terms with this fact."
Gordon did concede that not all Southern Baptist scientists agree on the age of the universe - including those who believe that universe is only thousands of years old and that God created it with the appearance of age - and said that the recent revelations strengthen the position of scientists like himself who believe that God created the universe billions of years ago, but did not bring about life through Darwinian evolution.
Speaking for the younger universe camp, Answers In Genesis (AiG), argues that the Bible does not allow for a Big Bang and that other mechanisms could have produced gravitational waves.
"This announcement undoubtedly will be welcomed as the long-sought proof of cosmic inflation so necessary to the big bang model," an AIG online commentary said. "Biblical creationists know from Scripture that the universe did not begin in a big bang billions of years ago. For instance, from God's Word we understand that the world is far younger than this. Furthermore, we know from Genesis 1 that God made the earth before He made the stars, but the big bang requires that many stars existed for billions of years before the earth did."