1. origin of space, time, matter, and energy
2. origin of life
3. human exceptionalism
4. fine-tuning of the universe, Earth, and Earth’s life to make possible the existence and redemption of billions of humans
5. Genesis 1’s predictive power to accurately describe, in chronological order, key events in Earth’s history leading to humans More.
Ross defends each one, for example,
Origin of the universe: All our observations of the present and past state of the universe are consistent with a cosmic creation event that occurred 13.8 billion years ago. Some examples include (1) maps of the cosmic microwave background radiation; (2) past cosmic temperature measures establishing the universe has cooled from a near infinitely hot, compact state; (3) observed spreading apart of galaxy clusters and galaxies; (4) measures of the cosmic expansion rates throughout the universe’s past history; (5) absence of black dwarf stars; (6) abundances of radioisotopes; (7) stellar burning time measurements; and (8) white dwarf cooling curves. Space-time theorems establish that a causal Agent beyond space and time created the universe.
But cosmologist Sean Carroll, a multiverse advocate, disagreed with this (by now old) argument in 2008:
According to Reasons to Believe, the chance of life arising on a planet within the observable universe is only 1 in 10^282 — or it would have been, if it weren’t for divine miracles. (Don’t tell them about there are 10^500 vacua in string theory, it would ruin everything.) They get this number by writing down a long list of criteria that are purportedly necessary for the existence of life (“star’s space velocity relative to Local Standard of Rest”; “molybdenum quantity in crust”; “mass distribution of Oort Cloud objects”), then they assign probabilities to each, and cheerfully multiply them together. To the non-crackpot eye, most have little if any connection to the existence of life, and let’s not even mention that many of these are highly non-independent quantities. (You cannot calculate the fraction of “Sean Carroll”s in the world by multiplying the fraction of “Sean”s by the fraction of “Carroll’s. As good Irish names, they are strongly correlated.) It’s the worst kind of flim-flam, because it tries to cover the stench of nonsense by squirting liberal doses of scientific-smelling perfume. If someone didn’t know anything about the science, and already believed in an active God who made the universe just for us, they could come away convinced that modern science had vindicated all of their beliefs. And that’s not something any of us should sit still for.
Hmmm. Given that Sean Carroll relies for his attack on Hugh Ross’s view on string theory, his argument may be in worse trouble than Ross’s.
See also: Do science and philosophy offer more relief from grief than religion does? Sometimes it becomes clear to people that there is either no meaning in life or the meaning lies beyond this life.
Post-modern physics: String theory gets over the need for evidence