Taking Back Astronomy: Part 3
This month’s book review is the final part of the three part review for the book, “Taking Back Astronomy,” written by Jason Lisle.
If you haven’t read Part One and Two, then I would encourage you to do so, before reading this post, Part Three.
What is the book about?
The back cover says the following: This book is meant to be an introduction only - a starting point to a biblical world view of the universe. Who knows what amazing truths are waiting to be discovered if only the shackles of secular thinking are removed. Now is the time of discovery…
Take a breathtaking look at the universe in this comprehensive guide to the heavens! Sit back and explore the world at your fingertips in this book which:
Explains the scale and size of the universe that is hard for our minds to imagine - yet can indicate the Master’s hand at work.
Over 50 full-colour, rarely seen photos of stars, nebulas, and galaxies.
Filled with facts that challenge secular theories and models of the universe - how it began and how it continues to amaze the scientific community.
Explores numerous evidences that point to a young universe: magnetic poles of planets, the spiral shape of galaxies, comets and how long scientists think they can last, and much more.
With a doctorate in astrophysics from the University of Colorado, Dr Jason Lisle is your guide to the universe beyond our world in this remarkable book. Step out among the stars and experience the truly awesome power of God through this glimpse of His vast creation.
Part Three covers Chapters Four and Five.
Chapter four focuses on addressing several other matters where the majority of astronomers today disagree with what Lisle calls, “the straightforward reading of the Bible.” He assures that his investigation will reveal evidence that very much supports the Genesis record of creation. Lisle addresses two topics:
Naturalism - its concept and the philosophic and scientific problems with it
The question of the uniqueness of the earth and the concept of extraterrestrial “alien”life.
Lisle gives clear and concise definitions of naturalism and goes on to give an equally clear definition of the biblical worldview and how it contrasts to naturalism. His discussion deepens into the laws of nature, how Christians and naturalists agree that they are predictable and that experimentation can be used to probe these laws.
Lisle points to how scripture gives us reassurance of the laws of nature, since God created them. He references Jeremiah 33:25, Malachi 3:6 and Numbers 23:19.
In contrast, Lisle asks questions concerning naturalism that reveals the contradiction in their philosophy. For example:
What reasons does the naturalist have for expecting the universe to be consistent and predictable?
If the universe has not been designed by God, then why should it obey any laws of nature?
Where did the laws of nature come from, and why do they obey logical mathematical relationships?
Lisle points out that trying to find naturalistic explanations for things that have been supernaturally created, as stated in Genesis 1, is a futile exercise and causes numerous scientific problems and inconsistencies for naturalists.
Lisle addresses some of the inconsistencies on a basic level for people like me, and includes an in-depth section for those who can understand a more complex explanation. Nevertheless, I did read the in-depth section on anti-matter, as I had no idea what it was and was very curious how it caused a huge problem for the ‘big bang’ theory.
Lisle also provides both basic and in-depth information on the solar system formation and why the diversity of different solar systems is a devasting blow to secular system formation scenarios.
Lisle points out that the seamless blend of uniformity and diversity observed in the created universe is a mark of the God of the Bible.
The other topic - uniqueness of the earth addresses the secular view of the earth - it’s just another planet that happened to be there, an accident. I like how Lisle points out that five out of the six days of creation were spent creating things on the earth - providing all that God intended for the earth. Only one day was spent on creating the other objects. Earth is truly special. Genesis 1:31 says, “And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.”
Lisle goes on to describe the other planets in our solar system and how they differ immensely from earth. He references Isaiah 45:18, a wonderful verse that confirms God’s intention for earth: “For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else.”
In addition to God’s intention for the earth, Lisle puts focus on how sin and redemption has led us to the Messiah - Jesus Christ and how the Bible tells us that there are no other beings in the universe.
Lisle references 1 Peter 3:18, Hebrews 9:27, 10:10, Romans 8:20-22 and I think of John 3:16-17. I love how our Father’s Word is very clear in this area and shows how much we are loved and created in uniqueness, for our Father’s glory.
But what about UFO’s some might ask? Lisle gives an explanation as to why many people, even people who profess to be Christians and know the word of God, might believe that UFOs are indicators of life elsewhere in the universe. Lisle’s answer on pages 98-99 points directly to scripture and when I read it, I wanted to weep. Just like I want to weep, when scripture speaks of Jesus lamenting for those who reject the Lord. Matthew 23:37: “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing!
What is written on pages 98-99 is beautiful, giving the Lord glory, in it’s heartbreaking and simple reasoning as to why man insists on going in any direction, except that which leads to its Creator and heavenly Father. Lisle references Romans 1:18-25, Colossians 2:3, John 17:3 and John 14:6. I will refrain from reading passages from these pages - I think it’s better read first hand.
The title for Chapter 5 is ,“War of the World Views”, which is a very appropriate title, because not only is there war, silent or otherwise, between believers and non-believers, but the Bible tells of a spiritual that is the big picture, that mankind is a part of. The Bible says we can’t see this war and quite frankly I am thankful God has spared us from seeing it. Ephesians 6:12 says: For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.
I like how Lisle points out that the Bible is not to be deemed a mere science textbook. It’s a historical book that shows us our place in the God’s universe and how to draw close to our heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ.
At some point, unfortunately, Lisle mentions the trinity, a doctrine that claims Jesus, God the Father and the Holy Spirit are all the same person. This doctrine is not found anywhere in the Bible. Fortunately, Lisle goes on to correctly explain how we can accept the free gift of salvation through Jesus Christ’s sacrifice, which restores our relationship with God, our heavenly Father.
Lisle mentions an obvious fact from the Bible, that nevertheless caught my attention - it only took one sin to ruin Eden, and ultimately the world that Adam and Eve were banished to, the world we live in. I would not want a tally of how much I have sinned and the total number doesn’t matter, because it needed only one sin to get us into the mess we are in today. According to world population figures from 2020, there are 7.7 billion people in the world. Even if each person has only sinned once the entire time they have been alive, that is still 7.7 billion sins. That obviously is not the case- so it’s humbling and amazing to know that Jesus has that victory and we can live for an eternity with God the Father, if we want to, due to Jesus’ victory over sin, by the grace of the Father, for His glory.
Lisle gives a reflection on eternal life with God and revisits the choice we have to reject the free gift of salvation - thereby rejecting God and His perfect character. It is a good way to round off the book, because although the book contains many facts about the works of God, it all comes down to our relationship with God, through Jesus Christ. As beautiful as the night sky is, we won’t find answers about Jesus, who we have to go through to get to to God the Father (Acts 4:12). We won’t find answers about why the world is drowning in sin, or Jesus’ second coming and the resurrection. These things can only be found in the Bible - our guide that tells the entire history from start to finish of mankind.
Taking Back Astronomy opens up the door to seeing astronomy through a biblical worldview. This enables those, who acknowledge God, our Creator, to see His works glorified through scientific data, that reflects His Word. It also offers the opportunity for those with a secular world view to question the false doctrine that is being spoonfed to the world by misled, secular scientists.
Thank you for reading this review. Until next time, peace be with you.
Book source: www.bookdepository.com
NB! The link I list for the book review is not an endorsement of the publisher, bookshop, book club, etc.
Thumbnail source: www.bookdepository.com