The starlight-travel-time problem has been a difficult issue for biblical creationists for a long time. Big Bang cosmologists also have their own starlight-travel-time problem but creationists have proposed various solutions to this problem in the past decade or more. Recently I proposed an expansion on a solution, first proposed by Jason Lisle, in an article entitled “A biblical creationist cosmogony.” It is somewhat technical so I thought I’d write a very short layman summary here.
Hubble Deep Field: Extremely distant galaxies on the edge of the visible universe. Credit: NASA/Hubble
When God said He created everything in order that He did according to the Genesis 1 account then all those events occurred as the Bible describes on those consecutive 24-hour days about 6000 years ago. Lisle proposal is that those events were timed when the light first arrived, or when a hypothetical Earth-bound observer might have first observed them happening. And the main issue is the creation of the stars and galaxies, some of which lay tens of billions of light-years distant. So if we only consider the language of appearance, the light from those galaxies, and all stars, first arrived sometime during Day 4 of Creation week. Therefore travelling at constant speed of light (c), which means light travels 1 light-year per year, then it would have taken billions of years to get to Earth. Therefore such a view of the universe requires that all galaxies were created at a time long before God created the Earth on Day 1 of creation week. But this is just language of appearance. A constant speed of light (c) assumes a certain convention of synchronizing clocks. We could equally have chosen another convention that simply times all events when they are observed. So when the light of the ‘newly’ created stars and galaxies arrives at the Earth on Day 4, it is truly the first light from the creation of those galaxies. In my view, the only question to answer with this model is: Is it compatible with Scripture? Continue reading
If the universe is only 6000 years old according to Moses (Genesis chapters 5 and 11) then biblical creationists have a starlight-travel-time problem. The universe is tens of billions of light-years across. There are good scientific grounds to believe that is the case. So shouldn’t it take at least billions of years for light to reach us from the distant galaxies? How do you reconcile the size of the Universe with only the 6000 years or so available since the Creation, according to Genesis chapter 1 in the Bible? I once listed five possible areas that we might find a solution.1
I believe that within the following options or categories explanations may be found that are consistent with the text of Genesis and so maintain the interpretation of 6 × 24-hour literal earth-rotation days of creation, about 6000 years ago. They are briefly discussed here in no particular order.
1. A timing convention
One possibility is that the language of Genesis is phenomenological language (describing appearance). In this case, stars were made billions of years before Day 4,2 but in such a manner that the light from all stars (and galaxies), no matter how far away, all arrived at the earth on Day 4 and so their light could have been seen first at that moment. This is reference frame ‘time-stamping’ events from the moment they are seen on Earth.
Lisle’s timing or clock synchrony convention3,4 describes this idea. He presented two possible interpretations: One is phenomenological language and the second has to do with the physical nature of the created universe. Continue reading
This is a video segment, with added text subtitling, taken from the documentary film “The Heavens Declare” Part 2 where in I describe the new physics of how light from the most distant galaxies could have reached Earth in just 24 hours during the Creation by God 6000 years ago. My model is based on Carmeli’s cosmology and where the Universe was rapidly stretched out by the Creator on Day 4 of Creation week when He made the stars and galaxies. This provides a solution to the creationist light-travel-time problem.