"Who made God?" is the standard question of the new atheists. However, Edgar Andrews' latest book, Who made God? Searching for a theory of everything, is not another cynical atheistic diatribe. Although Andrews has a pile of initials after his name (BSc, PhD, DSc, FInstP, FIMMM, CEng, CPhys), he is a witty, engaging author and theologian, in addition to scientist. Although Andrews takes on the new atheists, the main thrust of Who made God? is an apologetic of how the Bible fits into modern science (or how the Bible predicted the discoveries of modern science). Edwards' "theory of everything" is a theistic version of M-theory or string theory.
Confronting the new atheists
Although Andrews did not write a book specifically to rebut the claims of the new atheists, he doesn't hesitate to confront them on their own ground. In particular, Andrews takes on Richard Dawkins' "ultimate 747" argument (The God Delusion), and numerous claims by Victor Stenger, who wrote God, the Failed Hypothesis. Andrews' critique of Stenger's logical fallacies, misrepresentation of history/theology/science, and slight of hand with word definitions, is nothing short of brilliant. No wonder Stenger responded (although inadequately) to Andrew's book (See Who made God blog).
Although Andrews is not an old earth creationist, his interpretation of Genesis, along with the evidence he considers compelling for the Christian faith falls almost exactly in line with those of the God And Science website. Andrews shows how the scientific data fits what the Bible says about thee creation.
One of the most fascinating chapters is on the origin of the laws of physics. Stephen Hawking and other atheists say that the universe can just pop into existence on the basis of the laws of physics alone. However, none of them bother to explain how those laws of physics came into effect and why they are so elegantly designed. Andrews points out how equations of mathematics beautifully describe the rules by which the universe operates. Andrews explains why the "inverse square" principle applies to gravitational, magnetic, and electrical forces. In order to "explain" the origin of the physical laws, Victor Stenger pulls a slight-of-hand by claiming they come from nothing, without defining that his "nothing" is not true nothing (void-zero), but empty space (void-one), which is actually part of the universe. Can true nothing really produce anything? Stenger misrepresents Noether's theorem claiming it shows the laws of nature originate from the universe's symmetries, although the theorem is actually dependent upon the existing laws of physics. So, Stenger's argument is essentially circular.
Over the moon
Richard Dawkins believes in miracles. i know this sounds strange, but it is true. However, he calls them "extremely improbable events." Dawkins believes "it is possible for a marble statue to wave at us."1 He also says "it is theoretically possible" for a cow to jump over the moon. As a professor with a Ph.D. in materials, Andrews shows that Dawkins is completely wrong about any possibility a marble statue could move its hand up and down. Although it is theoretically possible for all the air in a room to move to one corner, creating a vacuum in the rest of the room, it really is impossible for atoms in a crystal matrix to move out of that matrix. Dawkins is also wrong about the possibility to a cow jumping over the moon. The idea that any object could achieve escape velocity from the surface of the earth through an appeal to random molecular motion is absolute insanity. Ultimately, Dawkins is trying to convince people that anything that is theoretically possible will happen in the universe, given enough time. However, Dawkins doesn't have infinite time, since the observable universe has only been in existence for 13.8 billion years. Trying to apply the wave functions of quantum mechanics to massive objects, disregarding of the laws of the conservation of energy and momentum, amounts to scientific anarchy.
Who made God? contains a few chapters that examine the origin of life and biological evolution. Andrew's explanation of the chemistry, biochemistry and molecular biology principles is quite good, and should be understandable by the majority of readers. He has a chapter on information theory, but doesn't get too detailed or specific about how it could be applied to the question of macroevolution. One disappointing chapter is one that examines the role of mutation in possible evolutionary scenarios. At the end of the chapter, Andrews attempts to blame the condition of the creation on fall of mankind (as if that explains why God "messed up" His "perfect" creation). Although Andrews says the original creation was perfect, the Bible says only that it was "very good" and even says that one aspect of the original creation was "not good" (Genesis 2:18). In fact, the Bible indicates that this creation was not created to be perfect, but is only a partial representation of that which is to come (1 Corinthians 13:9-10), which will be perfect. The new creation will be the perfect tabernacle - the city "whose architect and builder is God" (Hebrews 11:10), which will not be of this creation (Hebrews 9:11). Andrews also blames the mortality of human beings on the fall, although the Bible says human beings were created mortal and would have become immortal only if they had eaten from the tree of life (which God prevented after the fall-Genesis 3:24). Likewise Andrews says that carnivorous activity began only after the fall, although the Bible suggests God created the carnivores and that animal death had occurred before the fall.
Good vs. evil and morality
Human moral behavior is an enigma to the atheist. On one hand atheists like Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris admit that human behavior is intrinsically selfish (since selfish behavior tends to be favored by natural selection). However, they also claim that altruism is also a selected trait. So, naturalism attributes the diametrically opposed behaviors—human depravity and human goodness—both to natural selection. Andrews does a good job pointing out that the duality of human behavior is better explained by the Bible rather than natural selection.
Who made God? is an excellent examination of the scientific evidence that supports the claims of the Bible. Edgar Andrews writes in a very understandable and entertaining way. Although not specifically aimed at the "new atheists," Andrews does not hesitate to point out where their arguments are logically fallacious. Andrews has a handle on a lot of different areas of science, but doesn't overwhelm the reader with excessive jargon. Much of the book is quite witty, although some of it is understated, so you need to pay attention. I found myself laughing out loud many times while reading. Enjoy!
- Who made God blog
- If God Created Everything, Who Created God?
- Is God Real? Does Science Answer "Is There a God?"
- Is Christianity True? Evidence for the Truth of the Christian Religion
- God, Science, and Reason: Finding the Light of God Amidst the Darkness of Atheism and Dogmatism Book Review
Last Modified August 26, 2011