Newsletter No. 10

Newsletter No. 10

Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

On 25th December 2021, the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) was launched with its first images of distant objects being received in July 2022. This is the successor to the highly successful Hubble Space Telescope that has vastly extended astronomical knowledge. The JWST is designed to operate mainly in the infra-red spectrum because in the assumed expanding universe, the spectrum of light is shifted toward the infra-red region (called red shift). The assumption being the greater the red shift, the more distant is the object observed. The plan is for the JWST to observe stars and galaxies in the higher red shift areas, these being more distant, and if the speed of light is constant, then these are assumed to be older.

The secular model of the ‘big bang’ theory assumes everything started some 13.8 billion years ago, with the lighter elements – hydrogen, helium and possibly lithium being formed at the initial explosion.  Postulations have been made relating to formation of heavier elements, leading to stars which come together to form galaxies evolving with time over an assumed period of some 300 million years.  Applying this model, they anticipate that further back in time (nearer to the big bang) very few galaxies should exist.  In theory, the more distant the object (in astronomical terms), the older is the image, and the greater is the red shift.  Therefore, applying Hubble’s Law (an approximate correlation between red shift and distance, hence time) at a red shift greater than 11 very few fully formed galaxies should be visible.  JWST is well capable of detecting objects at this distance and beyond.

The first JWST results from the area around a collection of five galaxies known as Stephan’s Quintet has proved quite startling. It is true to say: ‘the heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims His handiwork’ (Psalm 19:1) when such remarkable images are seen, but what is more startling has been the abundance of fully formed galaxies at high red shift distances. The model of the ‘big bang’ theory does not fit with what is seen in these early JWST results.

What does the Bible tell us in Genesis 1? ‘God created the heavens and the earth’ on day 1 (vs. 1) along with the waters (vs. 2). This implies that hydrogen and oxygen (in the water) and the naturally occurring elements (in the earth) all existed from the beginning. The sun, moon and stars were made on day 4 (vss. 14-19). All the heavenly bodies were fully formed in the middle of creation week. Isaiah 40:22 says: ‘It is He (God) … who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, and spreads them like a tent to dwell in’. Similar thoughts are expressed in Psalm 104:2. Job, speaking about God in chapter 9 speaks of how He overrules creation (vss. 8-9) ‘who alone stretched out the heavens … who made the Bear and Orion, the Pleiades and the chambers of the south’.

There may be great distances in space, but if God ‘stretched out the heavens’ then the light we observe from distant objects did not have to take billions of years to reach us. An alternative theory to that used by secular astronomers is the ‘Anistropic Synchrony Convention’ which says that no (or minimal) time is taken for light to travel from distant objects, meaning we are seeing these galaxies in real time (as they are now). This fits in with the appearance great timeframes by the ‘stretching out’ process.

What could we expect to see from a ‘creationist’ model? God completed His creation in 6 days and each day’s work was a job fully done. All the stars, galaxies and constellations were therefore fully finished on day 4, and no matter how far back we look (if that is indeed possible), we expect to find everything in its place and in full order. The JWST observations should not surprise us in the least because they are what we should have expected.

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To read more about JWST findings in a very informative article by Dr Jason Lisle visit:

Planned meetings for 2023

Saturday 4th March 2023.  Andy McIntosh (Answers in Genesis) has agreed to take our Spring 2023 meetings.  This will be held at Emmanuel Church, Workington.  His proposed subjects are:

  • 4 pm – The wonder of hearing
  • 6 pm – The wonder of migration

Saturday 7th October 2023.  Dan Peters (Newcastle) has agreed to take our Autumn 2023 meeting.  This will be a preaching meeting at Grace Evangelical Church,  Carlisle.

  • 6 pm – The importance of a right understanding of Genesis