astronomy Creation/evolution Physics

Missing matter mostly missing in lensing galaxy

Figure 1: An irregular ring of radiation can be seen around the distant galaxy in the center of this 2.2-micron CCD photograph, made with the 10-meter Keck telescope on Hawaii. Just below the lensing galaxy a neighboring galaxy can be seen, which also contributes to the lensing effects. Sometimes these are called an Einstein ring. Credit: ESA and the W. M. Keck Observatory

Gravitational lensing is a prediction of Einstein’s general theory of relativity. It describes the situation where a foreground galaxy (or cluster of galaxies) acts like a light lens and focuses the light of a more distant background galaxy and hence magnifies it like a normal lens would do.  According to the theory the lens distorts the galaxy image often looking like a cross or a ring around the closer “lensing” galaxy.

Several earth-based radio and optical telescopes and the Herschel Space Observatory were used to image an object. Shown here, in Fig. 1, is where a gravitational lens is claimed to image a very distant galaxy that is apparently still in early formation.

The central “lensing” galaxy is a strong source of radio-frequency emissions, and it was found to radiate too much far-infrared radiation. As a consequence, the online Astronomy Magazine reported,1

“Modeling of the geometry of the lensing situation for instance demonstrated that the lensing galaxy which hosts the radio source contains an unexpectedly low fraction of mysterious dark matter compared with that predicted for large radio galaxies.” [emphasis added]

Here is a situation where according to the standard big bang model and the theory of galaxy formation more unseen dark matter should exist in the lensing galaxy than the lens indicates from the theory of lensing (derived from Einstein’s general relativity in this case). No dark matter is actually seen but the missing matter is mostly missing.

Figure 2: The Bullet Cluster from wikipedia.  X-ray photo by Chandra X-ray Observatory. Exposure time was 140 hours.

The irony here is that gravitational lensing is used as part of the claimed “best evidence” of the existence of dark matter in the now-famous Bullet Cluster.2  Shown here in Fig. 2 is the Bullet Cluster where one smaller sub-cluster (the bullet) appears to have passed through a larger cluster.

Figure 3: Mass density contours superimposed over photograph taken with Hubble Space Telescope. Image from wikipedia.

In Fig. 3 we see the claimed mass density contour lines which were determined totally from gravitational lensing. It was claimed that the spatial offset of the center of the total mass from the center of the visible normal mass (matter that emits light) was evidence that dark matter is real. Though this interpretation of the gravitational lensing results is disputed.

The proposer of MOND (Modified Newtonian Dynamics), Mordehai Milgrom, offers an alternative explanation and refutes3 the claims that the Bullet Cluster proves the existence of dark matter.

Others4 cautioned against “simple interpretations of the analysis of weak lensing in the bullet cluster”, leaving it open that even in the non-symmetrical case of the Bullet Cluster, alternative explanations to dark matter could apply.

In this new study we have something quite different. The gravitational lensing is describing a galaxy in the background imaged by a foreground galaxy that needs to have much less dark matter than expected by the standard theory for the formation of galaxies. The theory involves dark matter producing the needed gravitational well to ‘seed’ the initial condensation of normal matter. So again the lensing is used as a method to detect the invisible dark matter, only in this case, to detect its non-presence. Quite a conundrum?


The answer is simple, the dark matter never existed in the first place. That is why it is missing. It is invisible because it is not there. The standard big bang universe formation theory is wrong. Galaxies don’t form naturalistically by themselves. They can’t.

The Bible says,

“…he made the stars also”  (Genesis 1:16)

That means God created them, and hence by inference the galaxies also, on Day 4 of Creation week.  No dark matter is needed when you have the Creator.


  1. Herschel Space Observatory is key to discovery of spectacular gravitational lens, June 13, 2014,
  4. G.W. Angus, B. Famaey and H. Zhao, 2006, “Can MOND take a bullet? Analytical comparisons of three versions of MOND beyond spherical symmetry,” MNRAS 371(1): 138–146;


By John Gideon Hartnett

Dr John G. Hartnett is an Australian physicist and cosmologist, and a Christian with a biblical creationist worldview. He received a B.Sc. (Hons) and Ph.D. (with distinction) in Physics from The University of Western Australia, W.A., Australia. He was an Australian Research Council (ARC) Discovery Outstanding Researcher Award (DORA) fellow at the University of Adelaide, with rank of Associate Professor. Now he is retired. He has published more than 200 papers in scientific journals, book chapters and conference proceedings.