12 Aug Darkness and Light: Cosmology Intersects the Bible
It may surprise one to know that cosmologists today understand the universe to be composed of two basic kinds of energy, usually described as matter and light. These experts believe this energy exists in two primary “sectors” of the universe—the dark sector and the light sector. The light sector (comprised of roughly 25% of the universe) is defined as that in which mass interacts electromagnetically and thus becomes visible to us. The dark sector (comprised of approximately 75% of the universe) is an expansive area in which the mass there is invisible to us. The dark sector of the universe is a theoretical aspect based on gravitational implications in which the amount of visible energy, matter, and light is not sufficient to explain certain observed gravitational phenomena.
This issue of dark and light plays a curious role in our modern era of humanistic relativism and materialism. I say “curious” because the Bible begins at this very point of dark and light, as does the Gospel of John. It is the lead issue-pairing of the history of Creation in the Bible.
In Genesis 1, during the very first day-era of Creation, the Bible tells us that the cosmos included a primal condition in which “darkness was upon the surface of the abyss.” If we read the nouns of the passage, we can see where modern science approaches an intersection with the Bible:
1 In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. 2 The earth was unformed and void, darkness was on the face of the deep, and the Spirit of God hovered over the surface of the water. 3 Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. 4 God saw that the light was good, and God divided the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. So there was evening, and there was morning, one day” (Genesis 1:1-6 Complete Jewish Bible – CJB).
“Be’reshit” 1 “In the beginning…” Literally, the onset of time (the structuring of that which followed (or “instantly coincided”) so as to cause it to exist in a state of motion, by which is meant that the material aspect of what followed would move through the spatial aspect of what followed in a sequential manner that becomes discerned by sentient observers as “time.”
“Shamayim” “…God created the heavens…” Technically, “sky” or “heavens” (a noun with a dual suffix meaning “pair of”). From a purely physical standpoint, the duality of upper and lower aspects of the “spatial cosmos”* from which we can infer that there is a duality of the cosmos relative to earth (“mass” as shall be described below). From such a supposition, we can fit the modern cosmological concepts of “Light Sky” and “Dark Sky” into the Biblical scenario of the physical heavens. But beyond physical cosmology, we also know from this revelation of Scripture that there is a non-physical reality of Spirit that is included in and distinguished from matter in the word “heavens.”
“Aretz” “…and the earth.” Corresponding to the science-cosmology concept of “mass” (matter). These can be understood to be energy clusters that we know as physicality in the ordinary sense of “objects” (down to the smallest atomic quantity that can be measured as being material in nature rather than simply an electrical charge or a wave function of some quantum phenonemon).
“Tohu va’Vohu” 2 “The earth was unformed and void,…” A descriptor of the initial condition of the primal creation that could be seen from a modern view of early expansion theoretics as the initial state of the cosmos. A state in which there was only raw energy blasting from the originating geometric point of the space-framework before there was even a hydrogen atom that emerged from that singularity. (Some cosmologists are seeking to avoid the idea of a singularity per this description since it leads to the concept of a Creator.)
“V’choshek al-penei tehom” “…darkness was on the face of the deep, and the Spirit of God hovered over the surface of the water.” The primordial condition of darkness as the state of mass, light, and energy.
“Va’yomer Elohim, Ye’hi Ohr” va’ye’hi Ohr” 3 “Then God said, Let there be light”; and there was light.” The startling moment in which visible light manifested from the primordial darkness and thus sentient biological life began to have a home in which it would come to dwell.
“Va’yar Elohim et ha’Ohr ci tov” 4 “God saw that the light was good, and God divided the light from the darkness.” The cosmic observer made the theoretical cosmos reality by way of observing it and giving it an ascription of goodness. Thus, from the metaphysical and philosophical realms of thought concerning quantum reality, the function of God as “Observer” was performed to make the history of quantum possibilities not only real and particular, (from the infinite range of possibilities!) but also observably tangible and ongoing.
From this grand beginning, the Bible goes much farther to demonstrate that dark and light are spiritual realities as well as they are physical realities. To begin a study on this concept, I encourage you to read John 1 and the letter of 1 John in the New Testament.
Isn’t it curious that modern cosmological science is just now coming to the starting point that the Bible narrated long ago? For now, let it nourish us to know that science is like a growing child only just beginning to understand the realities listed succinctly in the opening two verses of the Word of God.
Love and blessings to all,
* The use of “spatial cosmos” as I intend it in this article refers to the non-time aspect of the cosmos in the widest sense. Such an ascription therefore necessarily includes gravity, mass, energy, and all the quantum aspects of theoretical physics. My purpose in the above “intersections” of science with the Bible is not to try to make their descriptions of reality identical but rather to demonstrate simply that the Bible contains everything that science has attained but that the Bible goes much farther than science so that what is contained in the Bible has relevance for the totality of man’s existence and destiny, not only that which is temporal and physical but also that which is eternal and transcendent.