Why did God create the universe so big?

Category: Bible/Christian Worldview 446 4

One of my favorite things to do is to look up at the stars on a clear night. For me, and many people throughout history, the stars are a confirmation of the existence of God. However, there is a trend among the non-Christian community that says that the vastness of the universe proves that God does not exist. The very fact that the universe is so big makes it unlikely that God made it. Why would God create something so big? What would be the purpose of all those stars and galaxies?

Even Christians with a strong faith will sometimes ask, “Why did God create the universe so big?” Before I answer this question let me go over exactly how big the universe is. The planets in our solar system revolve around the sun (which is a star). There are maybe 400 billion stars just in our galaxy, the Milky Way. There are possibly billions of galaxies each with billions of stars.

To help us understand the size of the universe let’s take a look at how long it would take for us to travel across it. The maximum speed possible according to Einstein’s theory of special relativity is 186,000 miles per second. That’s fast! “Taking off, you could circle the earth seven times in one second. Leaving our planet, you would pass the moon in two seconds and Mars in just four minutes, and it would take you only five hours to reach Pluto.”[1]

Once we leave our solar system, the next closest star is Proxima Centauri, which is 4.2 light years away. Traveling at 186,000 miles per second you would reach this star in 4.2 years. To reach the edge of the Milky Way, it would take you about 100,000 years. However, it would take you, after leaving the Milky Way, another 2.3 million years to reach Andromeda, the next closest galaxy.[2]

It would take 20 million years to reach the next galaxy after Andromeda. And all of this is only a very, very small fraction of what is out there. Remember there are billions of galaxies. If you were to do nothing but count the stars you would not live long enough to finish.[3]

http://christianworldviewpress.com/2013/04/28/why-did-god-create-the-universe-so-big/
NML Cygni, the largest known star in the universe, with VY Canis Majoris, another large star. The little dot in the top left hand corner is our sun. NML Cygni is about 1,650 times the radius of our sun.

So, why did God create all this, especially when most humans throughout history never knew they existed? First, I would like to turn the question around for the atheists. What if the universe was very small? Of course, an atheist would answer with something like “if God is so great and powerful, then why didn’t he create the universe bigger?” If God created the universe small, atheists would complain; if God created it big, well, they will still complain. They are simply looking for something to argue about.

However, the original question (why God would create the universe so big) is still a great one. Let me start with Psalm 19:1 which says, “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.” The very size of the universe should make us stand in wonder and awe of God. The universe shows us just how creative and powerful God really is. In fact, to God, the universe is probably rather small. Author Gary Bates says:

“Logically, the universe is not big to God. After all he’s the one who made it. Size is only relative to us as inhabitants of this universe. And size and time are related somewhat. Because the universe is big to us we consider how long it would take us to travel across it, for example. But God is ‘outside’ of the dimensions that he created (the universe), thus he is not bound by it.”[4]

This should make us even more worshipful of the Creator. And it doesn’t stop there. The vastness of the universe also shows us how important the earth is in God’s sight. Stars are technically just giant balls of gas. The simplest life form on this planet is more complex than the biggest stars. DNA has the structural complexity that makes the stars look like nothing. Plus we must remember that it doesn’t take God any more energy to create billions of galaxies than it does to create an ant. Isaiah 40:28 says, “Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom.”

In fact, God’s love really becomes clear when we think of how small we are. We are tiny dots on a tiny speck in a gigantic universe that is so large it boggles our minds. However, to God size and distance are nothing compared to the value of a human soul.[5]


[1] Gary Bates. Alien Intrusion. Powder Springs: Creation Book Publishers, 2004. Pg. 63-64.

[2] Ibid. 64.

[3] Ibid. 64.

[4] Ibid. 406.

[5] Ibid. 406.

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4 thoughts on “Why did God create the universe so big?

  1. 6169

    Wow, what a terrible question. The reason why neither scenario makes sense, neither a small universe nor an extremely large one, is because THERE IS NO GOD. Atheists aren’t looking for an argument, it’s just a fact that the existence of a god makes no sense whatsoever in light of all we know. A god is simply not necessary to explain the current configuration of the universe or the evolution of life. The universe is not small, so god makes no sense. Had the Universe been small, still, god would make no sense. Did it ever occur to you that maybe the reason none of the evidence makes sense when you superimpose a god on it is because there is no god?

    Reply
  2. mmcclellan2

    Thanks for the comment. Whether or not the universe is small or large does not prove or disprove the existence of God. Atheism is also not a fact, it is a faith. See here:

    http://christianworldviewpress.com/2013/11/05/is-atheism-a-religion/

    Considering your comment “all we know,” here is a good article for you to read: http://creation.com/arguments-evolutionists-should-not-use

    What about our “current configuration?” Here’s another excellent article for you to read:

    http://creation.com/refuting-evolution-chapter-9-is-the-design-explanation-legitimate

    And another:

    http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/nab/why-does-creation-include-suffering

    Personally I think the evidence makes perfect sense for the existence of God. See here: http://creation.com/15-questions

    After reading these articles, you need to ask yourself a question. Does the universe make any sense in an atheistic worldview?

    Reply
  3. Dennis

    Hello,

    All my life I’ve been told I’m an atheist, since I’ve never been forced into a religion when I was a helpless, manipulable little kid. Questions as to “Why is the universe so big” or “Why is the universe so small” and “How big is the universe” always seemed pointless to me, because it is only big to us, and it is an opinion, not a measurement – using a distance measured by humans; so it is only applicable to us, here on Earth, for survival reasons. Outer space is not designed for us to live in so distance is not a measurable factor there, distance does not even exist there as it exists on Earth, we are comparing lemons to oranges. It’s like weighting yourself underwater, without knowing there is any water, and without even knowing what water is! The results of weighting yourself without the knowledge of what water is and does, are confusing… For centuries people thought the world was flat. The mere thought you ended up in the same place where you started if you move around drove people mad with confusion. Unfortunately, today it still drives people mad that due to a curvature in space-time you’ll end up in the same place you started in if you fly straightforward in outer space. . As for “How big is space”, that seems a pointless question to me, since space outside all existence is an absolute vacuum and cannot be measured. People often see the universe as a big balloon that is vacuum, and has some objects randomly flying around only themselves, but to me it is different, because the balloon has measured distances between the edges and space just doesn’t have an edge, it is endless void. Impossible? How much vacuum can you fit in a balloon? The vacuum is not IN the balloon, it just points out something ELSE is NOT in it, you cannot measure a vacuum by quantity (weight, size, volume), only its force by pressure (Or complex measurements using Planck’s Constant).

    As for “The universe is not big to God”, that sounds logical, because even if there is a supernatural being controlling everything, it wouldn’t be, think or act like a human being. If you believe in the loving God, It will love you just as much as that annoying fly you just swat. (Note that I just can’t use “He” for God, it feels wrong, I use a capitalized “It”, because to me God is not a being, it is a deity, a concept… I still have the greatest respect for any possible ultimate force, so I capitalize it).. Ahum… God will not punish you for swatting the fly and you will not be punished by God for swatting a baby either. (I do not justify swatting babies here, and I DO think it’s immoral to swat babies) I just think God (or whatever you believe in) does not and will not care what you do or judge you. And if God is sad if you hurt another human being, It will be equally sad if you hurt a fly, or a rat, or a cockroach, or a blade off grass… God does not favor humans, and the mere fact we humans think It does, makes us all sinners in my opinion. I think it is egocentric and mad. Not one human soul is worth more to God than a cockroach’s soul is. Believe what you want but I don’t think that God judges. And It may love you, but just maybe it is your own love you are experiencing. Your respect and human values. God or whatever ultimate force you believe in, may have made that all possible, but how you fill it in is your own ultimate-force-damned choice.

    Oh and before sentencing me to death by fire, I said I’ve been TOLD I’m an atheist, but atheists believe only what their eyes see, yet our eyes deceive us in but the simplest optic illusion. I don’t see a difference between an atheist and a believer in a deity, they both believe in different things, but neither of them is truly open-minded. Neither am I, because I am just a simple human being, who is living his life in the best way he can, just like you.

    Reply
  4. mmcclellan2

    Dennis, Thanks for the comments. I’ve italicized some of the things you said in your comment and have placed my own comments to them below.

    “I’ve never been forced into a religion when I was a helpless, manipulable little kid.”

    You say this like everyone else (or Christians at least) are forced into believing in God because of their parents or society. Some people do come to a religious belief because of these things. However, this doesn’t happen with everyone. Besides, this doesn’t make a particular religion (Christianity in this case) automatically wrong. It is also worth to note that even adults can be manipulated into things – such as atheism or any other religion (or even certain kinds political thought).

    “Questions as to “Why is the universe so big” or “Why is the universe so small” and “How big is the universe” always seemed pointless to me, because it is only big to us…”

    Just because it is big to us does not make it a pointless question.

    “distance does not even exist there as it exists on Earth”

    There is distance in space. The sun is 93,000,000 miles away from us. That is quite a distance. You can try to use some kind of philosophical argument to try to explain that away, but in any case, the sun (and everything else) is some kind of distance away from us. We will eventually reach these places over time if we travel towards them.

    “For centuries people thought the world was flat.”

    This is a common misconception. Some people did believe that, but educated people believed that it was round (including both Christians and non-Christians). See this article:
    http://creation.com/the-flat-earth-myth-and-creationism

    You also mention other things like: Someone will not be punished by God for swatting a baby, but that swatting that baby is immoral; God does not care what you do; Human life is equal to the life of a fly or cockroach; God does not favor humans; to think that God favors humans is a sin; life is our choice; and our eyes deceive us

    You ended your comment by talking about how the eye deceives us, but if it deceives us than how can you know anything that you said? I’m assuming that you believe in Darwin’s theory of evolution. If so, than you are correct that our lives are equal to an animal’s.

    But you also mention things like morality and that favoring humans is a sin, and that life is our choice. If life is nothing but evolved pond slim then morality does not exist. Morality would have had to evolve, but morality goes against survival of the fittest, which is a major component of evolution. Morality brings goodness into the world, but morality has no place in an evolved world based on “red in tooth in claw.” How can favoring humanity be a sin when sin does not exist? Are murder and rape sins (especially in a world where morality is relative)? They cannot be (along with swatting a baby) because killing and raping are mechanisms to survival in a world without morals. How can life be our choice if we are governed by our animal instincts, which forces us to do certain things for our very survival? How can swatting a baby be immoral if the “it concept” you speak about doesn’t care what we do?

    Reply

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