Creation Day 4: The Big Stretch

The Hubble Deep Field, product of Creation Day 4.
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On Creation Day 1, God made the earth, and gave it light. But on Day 4, earth needed another lamp, before He stretched the universe. That “Big Stretch” would cool the ambient light to a level that could never support life by itself.

Creation Day 1 Recap

Recall that on Creation Day 1, God made the universe and everything in it, as so many elementary particles. These particles each began separate from the rest, hence in a high-energy state. As the particles “fell into place” to form atoms (and molecules), they gave off light. At first the light shone everywhere, but quickly the light on one side of the new earth dwindled to darkness. Thus God “separated light from dark.”

On Creation Day 3, God planted the earth, like a vast garden. The ambient light from creation still shone then, and bright enough to support photosynthesis. But now God was ready for His next step.

God makes the stars

The Hubble Deep Field, product of Creation Day 4.

The Hubble Deep Field, a picture of some of the farthest objects in the universe. Objects like these are the posters for the starlight and time riddle. Photo: Hubble Space Telescope Science Institute.

Genesis 1:14 tells why God made many more discrete lamps:

Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night, and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years.

The “expanse of the skies” is not the same expanse that God made on Creation Day 2. That expanse is the earth’s crust. This new expanse is the universe itself.

Conventional wisdom says that

the universe [began] growing from a patch as small as 10-26 m, one hundred billion times smaller than a proton.

Convention then says that the universe grew during 10-34 second. In that amount of time, the light in the universe cooled to its present very low temperature. This is the Cosmic Microwave Background that we know today.

But that implies that stars, galaxies, and larger objects formed after the expansion, not before. (Specifically, after five hundred million years.) The problem: the matter in the universe today is stretched too thin even for a new star to form. Conventional scientists assume that this matter exist as a vast dust cloud. But that cloud would disperse before it got dense enough for a star to form. Worse yet, if the cloud had any spin to it, it would spin too fast and fly apart as it started shrinking. (Any spinning object spins faster as it contracts. The Law of Conservation of Angular Momentum predicts this.)

Conclusion: the sun, moon, stars, and all the planets formed before the expansion. The universe was more dense then, but was not the infinitely hot “point” that the Big Bang assumes. Instead, the universe was about as hot as the Sun is today, with a density and volume to match.

The particular lamps that God made were:

  1. The Sun, to give daylight.
  2. The Moon, large enough to reflect part of the Sun’s light and to mark a twelfth part of the year.
  3. The stars.

But God did not set the stars in the sky at random. The patterns, or constellations, in the sky are no accident. They do mark the seasons in a temperate climate (or even a semi-tropical one like that in Israel).

The Big Stretch

After God made the stars, He stretched them out. The Bible says this eleven separate times. Furthermore, the universe has several stretch marks in it. Among them:

  • The universe seems to be accelerating. Conventional astronomers mark this down to “dark energy,” or a force that they cannot see, pushing the universe out. (They assume that gravity alone acts on the universe and is slowing it down or even trying to pull it back in.)
  • At the same time, galaxies and larger objects spin faster than they should. If they acquired this spin before the Big Stretch, they would keep it afterward. (Conventional scientists have a “dark” thought for this, too: “dark matter.”)
  • The loose hydrogen in intergalactic space is ionized. That means that it has no electrons. The Big Bang theory cannot explain that. According to it, hydrogen ions (free protons and deuterons) should have captured their electrons. So what made them lose those electrons all over again?
  • Many galaxies appear in long strings, something that should never happen under gravity alone. This might be the most obvious “stretch mark” other than the accelerated expansion.

Even more evidence shows that the stars must have formed before the great expansion, when matter was far more dense:

  • Black holes, the heaviest objects known, should never have formed after the Big Bang. What’s more, many of them are throwing out jets of matter, though nothing should escape them.
  • The larger any given galaxy, the larger its central black hole. Furthermore, a galaxy often has many stars in a close orbit around its center. In an already tenuous universe, this should not be. The black hole would stop that from happening.
  • Dwarf galaxies often appear in orbit around larger galaxies. (Our own galaxy has such a family.) How could any such object form in a less-dense environment?
  • Finally, the universe has many pairs of galaxies that literally ran into each other. That kind of crowding happened before the Big Stretch, not after.

Thus Creation Day 4 was at least as exciting a day as any in Creation Week. On this Day God made the universe in all its glory. And He already knew that He would make someone to appreciate it.


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Terry A. Hurlbut has been a student of politics, philosophy, and science for more than 35 years. He is a graduate of Yale College and has served as a physician-level laboratory administrator in a 250-bed community hospital. He also is a serious student of the Bible, is conversant in its two primary original languages, and has followed the creation-science movement closely since 1993.

28 Responses to Creation Day 4: The Big Stretch

  1. Fergus Mason says:

    This is so riddled with nonsense that I barely know where to start. However a couple of points:

    There is plenty of molecular hydrogen in interstellar space. Where do we find it? In the cool regions, of course. Where do we find ionised hydrogen? That would be in the hot regions. Does heat cause ionisation? Well yes, which is why hot ionised hydrogen doesn’t recapture electrons: the electrons are too energetic to stay in the shell.

    Black holes are not throwing out jets of matter. This is just absurd. Google “accretion discs” to find out what’s REALLY happening.

    The moon doesn’t mark a twelfth part of a year, except in primitive calendars. A year is 365.25 and a bit days. Twelve orbits of the moon is only 354.37 days. Are you arguing for a god who failed O-Grade arithmetic?

    The idea that the Earth, Sun, moon etc were formed before the expansion is so deeply, deeply ridiculous that it nearly made me void my bowels laughing. I mean really, they wouldn’t fit! This makes the hydroplate rubbish look sane.

    “the matter in the universe today is stretched too thin even for a new star to form.”

    Oh is it? *Sigh* Save some pennies and spend $150 on a small telescope; a Newtonian reflector would be best. Try Amazon; you can probably get a small Celestron newt for that kind of money. Go outside on a nice cold, clear winter night and find Orion. Look at his belt. Between the middle star of the belt and the horizon is a line of three stars. Look through the telescope at the second of these. Oh look! It’s NOT a star! It’s a nebula, a dense cloud of interstellar medium where NEW STARS ARE FORMING.

    This is why creationism fails: because the harder it tries, the more ridiculous it looks. Stick to ribs and arks, Terry; real science is now WAY beyond anything creationism can hope to deal with.

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      I will only bother to reply to one part of your screed, specifically regarding the Moon. Your argument assumes that the day has never shortened, nor the month either. I reply that both have shortened, in consequence of the Global Flood. You will see a detailed treatment later on, but in brief: the Flood produced gravitational settling, and that settling caused the earth to spin faster. What part of “Law of Conservation of Angular Momentum” don’t you get? Furthermore, at least seven very large objects struck the Moon all on one side, and slowed it down. With the result that it dropped into a lower orbit with a shorter period. From thirty long days to twenty-nine-point-five-odd short days.

      Originally, three hundred sixty days made one year, and thirty days made one month. The Flood ruined this symmetry.

      • Fergus Mason says:

        You mean you don’t have answers for any of the rest? Predictable.

        OK. Days on Earth are getting LONGER as the planet’s rotation slows. Far from its rotation speeding up through gravitational settling (note: what gravitational settling?? All Brown’s flood story would have done is make a rock layer and a water layer swap places; Earth wouldn’t have got smaller and denser.) This has been verified by a number of means, including growth patterns of various corals. Months are just a human construct except in primitive calendars that use the lunar year.

        You don’t have any evidence for any of this rubbish, do you?

  2. Fergus Mason says:

    OK, so let’s look in a bit more detail at the claim that “the sun, moon, stars, and all the planets formed before the expansion” when “the universe was about as hot as the Sun is today, with a density and volume to match.”

    Now, if this was actually the case (don’t worry, it wasn’t) then how exactly did the Earth, moon and all the other planets avoid being reduced to plasma, which is certainly what would happen to them if they were exposed to solar temperatures now? How did the Jovian planets, which are essentially balls of gas with small rocky or metallic cores, survive without having most of their mass stripped away?

    No, this is just fantasy, and anyone with any scientific knowledge whatsoever will instantly reject it as the nonsense it is.

  3. Steve Kelly says:

    The “expanse” on Creation Day 2 was NOT the earth’s crust between layers of water. I happen to like the hydroplate theory a lot, and am using it extensively in a novel I am writing, but the text of Genesis 1:8 specifically says God called the expanse “sky” or “heavens.” I can’t find any alternative translations for the Hebrew samayim here that can be construed to mean the earth’s crust. It is consistently translated as heaven or skies throughout the Old Testament.

    Gotta be careful that we make our theories fit the Scripture and not the other way around.

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      Look again at the Day Two article for further details. See also the “Fire in water” article.

    • Fergus Mason says:

      Here’s a radical idea: why not try making your theories fit the FACTS?

  4. Ironic word choice.

  5. Alex says:

    You have claimed yourself to be an expert of medicine (this one I might actually buy based off your biography), politics, economics, geology, biology, physics, ecology, and hydrology. I had no idea you were so skilled in astrophysics as well!

    What I find so amusing is that somebody who worked as a hospital administrator for a few years can consider themselves better versed in EVERY branch of science than the MILLIONS (yes, millions) of scientists across the globe who have been working on these questions for years.

    Im not going to wade through all of this nonsense piece by piece, but you ought to know that ionized does not mean that an atom is missing all its electron. Apparently while becoming an expert in everything science you missed the first class in introductory chemistry, one that I (and most people I know) took in high school.

    Here’s a question for you: where did God come from? There must be some sort of scientific explanation to explain His origins.

  6. Alex says:

    Another question: are you suggesting that the many stars in the universe are inherently different from our Sun? We have observed hundreds of planets orbiting stars outside of our solar system. Do those actually not exist? When did God create them? And why are there different sizes and masses of stars if they were all created uniformly?

    Also, when did God create any of the other planets in the solar system? Oh wait, according to the Bible he didn’t. It was for this reason that up until Galileo the Church had decreed that the Universe only had 7 things in it (Sun, Venus, Earth, Moon, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn), and as a result labelled the telescope the work of Satan since it found things other than those seven (the Galilean Moons).

    Obviously you dont believe that trash (I hope). But your way of thinking goes exactly in line with theirs. That only whats direct from the Bible can be true. If everybody thought the way you did our understanding of the cosmos would still be as it was in medieval times.

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      Actually, no two stars are alike. Did you really think you could legitimately infer, or imply, that all stellar spectra were comparable, or even equally capable of lighting a planet to help that planet support life?

      God made the planets on the same day that He made the stars. The word translated as star could be any bright object in the sky, whether it was fixed or wandered. (That’s exactly what a “planet” is: a wandering “star.”)

      • Fergus Mason says:

        “no two stars are alike”

        Correct. Many, however, are very similar and a very large number are almost identical to our Sun.

        “God made the planets on the same day that He made the stars.”

        Evidence please.

        “The word translated as star could be any bright object in the sky”

        How can you even pretend to base science on such an ambiguous and imprecise text?

        “That’s exactly what a “planet” is: a wandering “star.””

        Oh FFS. No it isn’t.

      • Alex says:

        I never said that all stars were the same, you implied that they were being how your formation mechanism has them all being formed at the same time as part of the exact same process. Conventional wisdom tells us that obviously no two stars are the same, being how they formed in a different place, at a different time, from a different gas cloud.

        Planets are wandering stars? WHAT??!! No! Now that is just absurd! Stars are objects that contain so much mass that the force of gravity is high enough to overcome to atomic bonds within the atoms and fuse those atoms into new elements. In other words, a fusion reactor. Planets are not.

        And then why do they have vastly varying ages (based off of isotope dating and crater density counts)? Or I suppose your response could be that “God made it that way.” So if that is your answer, then what made God?

        You (or anyone for that matter) haven’t provided any evidence for this young-Earth creation “theory.” Your best pieces of evidence are holes within accepted science, holes which have to exist because science isnt science if it is 100% proveable.

        • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

          I was strictly discussing semantics, and etymology. Did you, or did you not, know that the English word planet comes from the Greek word planaomai, which means “I wander”? The ancients knew only two kinds of bright lights: “fixed” and “wandering.” Therefore, the planets are in the same class of objects, “objects made on Day Four,” as what we today call the stars. That we have a somewhat different conceptual definition for what we once called “the wanderers” doesn’t matter in this context.

          Now about those widely differing ages: you have just fallen into a very common trap of circular reasoning. You are judging the theory I am advancing by how it fits into your theory. I don’t make the assumptions you make. I say that all the craters were made at once, about 4400 years ago. The meteoric bombardment was due entirely to objects that escaped the Earth’s gravity and fell on the other planets and their satellites, or got captured by the larger planets and became the satellites, or else became “asteroids.” (And explain near-earth asteroids if you can. Conventional wisdom has a very serious problem with asteroids like, for example, Asteroid 3753 Cruithne. But if Cruithne was a conglomeration of ejecta from earth, then of course it wound up in an orbit very close to that of earth around the sun.)

          Now about those isotopes: again you assume, totally without warrant, that initial concentrations of daughter nuclide are zero, that nothing but radioactive decay changes the compositions of mother and daughter nuclide over time, and most of all, that the rate of radioactive decay is constant over time, or even averages out constant from year to year. Absolutely none of these assumptions are safe.

          Holes in established science? Bank on them. Holes big enough for a meteor to shoot through, at sufficient speed even to escape the sun. And that’s a literal observation.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “The meteoric bombardment was due entirely to objects that escaped the Earth’s gravity and fell on the other planets and their satellites, or got captured by the larger planets and became the satellites, or else became “asteroids.””

            Nonsense. Do you have even the remotest idea how much matter would have had to be ejected to cause the amount of cratering we see on other planets, never mind to explain their satellites and the asteroids? And do you have any conception of how much energy that would have dumped into Earth’s atmosphere?

            “And explain near-earth asteroids if you can”

            They’re asteroids near Earth. There’s nothing even remotely difficult about that.

            “Conventional wisdom has a very serious problem with asteroids like, for example, Asteroid 3753 Cruithne.”

            What are you talking about? 3753 is in a horseshoe orbit. What problem does “conventional wisdom” have with that?

            “of course it wound up in an orbit very close to that of earth around the sun”

            3753’s orbit is nothing like ours. At closest approach it’s 0.8 AU away from us, its orbital plane is nearly 20% off the ecliptic, the centre of its orbit is 30 million miles from the centre of ours…

          • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

            The energy wouldn’t get dumped into the earth’s atmosphere. It would meain as the kinetic energy of the released objects. You have never once grasped just how violent an event the Flood was.

            Now then: by conventional wisdom, the asteroids are the remains of an exploded or tidally ruptured planet. Now how does such an object as 3753 Cruithne drift into a “horseshoe orbit” and quietly settle into it? Not if it came from earth, that’s believable. But if it came from outside, it would drop into a near-cometary orbit, not a near-circular one with respect to the sun.

            As to the configuration of its orbit: you need to look at an animation of the path of 3753 Cruithne, and the earth, with respect to the sun, not merely an animation of the path of 3753 Cruithne with respect to the earth. When you look at 3753 Cruithne strictly as a satellite of the sun, its orbit isn’t all that strange. It just has a slight inclination with respect to the ecliptic. (That’s why 3753 Cruithne hasn’t fallen to earth in all this time—or fallen back to it.) Except that an object falling in from the asteroid belt would not likely settle into a near-circular orbit.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “that the rate of radioactive decay is constant over time”

            That’s not an assumption, Terry. It’s an observed fact.

          • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

            No. That is merely the latest you have heard, and the thing you insist on believing in. Larry Vardiman and company have observed otherwise. Look up “polonium halos” and ask yourself how they formed, if not by accelerated nuclear decay.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            No Terry, it’s an observed fact: decay rates are constant to within the error bars of our measuring equipment, and there are well understood reasons why they’re constant. As for polonium halos they’re well understood too, and Gentry’s work was discredited long ago.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “That’s why 3753 Cruithne hasn’t fallen to earth in all this time—or fallen back to it”

            Nonsense, Terry. The reason 3753 hasn’t fallen to Earth is that it comes nowhere near us. At its closest point of approach it’s 7.5 MILLION MILES AWAY. As for it falling “back” to Earth, you have no grounds whatsoever to claim that it came from Earth, except your desire for Walt Brown’s unpublished, unreviewed work to be true in defiance of all the evidence.

            The hydroplate “theory”, complete with its mad tales of ejected asteroids and moons, is bunk. He won’t publish it and he won’t debate it. That’s because it’s transparently false and he knows it won’t stand up to an examination of the physics.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            By the way, there’s a typo in my comment from 4.38pm. “0.8 AU” should of course read “0.08 AU.”

  7. Fergus Mason says:

    “You have never once grasped just how violent an event the Flood was.”

    On the contrary: YOU haven’t grasped how much energy an event as violent as you claim your flood to have been would have released. It would have STERILISED THE PLANET. This is why your mate Brown won’t publish his work; because he knows that real geologists would rip it apart, as I would have done if he hadn’t avoided a debate. His numbers fail by orders of magnitude. I also note that you completely avoided my point about the amoount of matter involved. I wonder why?

    “by conventional wisdom, the asteroids are the remains of an exploded or tidally ruptured planet”

    Rubbish. There’s no other word for that claim that you’ll let me use; it’s just utter, steaming rubbish.

  8. kip says:

    Serious question (not as if the rest weren’t)

    If god can do anything he or she wants, why in heaven’s name make actual stars, billions of light years away, and then make the light “appear” as if it had been on route for billions of years, just to give us a map or a calender. (he could have quite literally made a canopy over earth, and placed small lights there.

    How do you read this text, and not understand that it was written by people who’s best understanding was that the sky was not far away, and lights were placed on it.

    Also, why would god make stars we cannot even see?

  9. Alex says:

    If you call in God to explain things that we do not understand about the universe, then you must also be prepared for the next logical question: where did God come from? And with that question we are now back to essentially the exact same question that we were at in the first place. So if we are to try and figure out how the universe is the way that it is today, there is no reason to add God into the equation. It is just an extra unnecessary step.

    So the ancients thought that stars and planets were the same thing. Great. The ancients didn’t know about a lot of things, but we can’t really blame them. They had no way of knowing everything that we understand today about the universe we live in. Which is precisely why I, unlike you, don’t believe in the mythological nonsense that they wrote.

    Now I do make the assumption that physical processes have remained relatively consistent through time, because it is a logical assumption. Everything that has ever been observed on human timescales has been relatively constant. By this I mean erosion rates, continental movement, planetary orbits, and so forth. There is no evidence that proves otherwise, so the logical assumption would be that over the long term these processes have been constant.

    With regards to Dr. Larry Vardiman, allow me to quote from ICR: “With the assistance of several members of my church and a lot of soul searching, I finally made a decision in 1972 to believe the statements about creation and the Flood, even if it flew in the face of the conventional science that I was being taught.” He willfully ignores science just because it doesn’t agree with the pages of a book that is 3000 years old. A book that was written by people who though that the planets were just moving lights in the sky and that the universe orbited around the Earth.

    Regardless of that, all that has been found to refute isotope dating is that there are certain traces within granitic rocks that may or may not come from a variance of nuclear decay rates. That does not make isotope dating proven wrong., And as Fergus puts it, all observational evidence has shown that decay rates are incredibly constant on measureable timescales.

    Asteroid 3753 Cruithne could also have been ejecta from Venus, the Moon, or Mars. Or it could be a dead comet. Or one of many other possibilities. What exactly is your point about this asteroid? There are many asteroids with Earth crossing paths: see And there are hundreds of models that have been used to successfully show how asteroids could migrate into various orbits due to gravitational interactions with other bodies. Some of these have already hit the Earth, leaving behind craters (which reminds me, by the way, how exactly does your theory explain craters on Earth? Craters that have been shown to exist with seismic data but have existed long enough to be completely filled in by material)

    Question: did all craters on every planetary body come from the Earth? Could you please explain the observed differences in crater densities on different planets and moons? How is Europa so devoid of craters? Shouldn’t it have very similar crater densities as Ganymede and Callisto? Same goes for the satellites of Saturn and Uranus.

  10. M. Aire says:

    “On Creation Day 1, God made the earth, and gave it light.”

    How would a being of infinite existence, power and omnipotence experience “days” let alone any measure of time? Would he not exist outside time? If he is bound by time, then who or what created time? Does God experience side-effects of time like boredom, anxiety, or restlessness?

    “But on Day 4, earth needed another lamp, before He stretched the universe.”

    Why would earth “need” anything if it was created by that aforementioned being of infinite wisdom? And why did God “wait” three days to “give” it?

    “That “Big Stretch” would cool the ambient light to a level that could never support life by itself.”

    So God created the universe, found his creation somehow unsuitable for his divine gift of life, and had to correct himself? Why would a being of infinite power need to do anything in measurable stages? Couldn’t he just ‘snap his fingers’ (a visual approximation) and make it so?

    “Recall that on Creation Day 1, God made the universe and everything in it, as so many elementary particles.”

    Why did God bother to make particles? Wouldn’t he just make “people” (or asteroids, or stars, or anything) as single-unit constructions? What was the point of making particles or atoms or DNA or any other indications of building material in the first place if he, of that infinite power, had no real need to use them?

    I’m only four sentences in, but you get the idea. Creationism defeats itself by proclaiming the universe shows signs of design, than answering that perfectly reasonable assumption with “a Christian God.” By your own text this God is a being of immeasurable power, knowledge, love, and existence.

    Such a being would not need to “design” anything, he would simply will it into existence. The fact that science has revealed such evidence of design renders your own bible illogical and irrelevant.

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