The scientific discovery of the Higgs Boson, also known as the "god particle," has produced a new theory about the end of the universe, and a prominent Christian Bible scholar says it might shed light on how God will bring about the new heavens and the new earth.
"Maybe there is an implication of Higgs Boson in terms of how the universe will end," Hendrick (Hank) Hanegraaff, president and chairman of the board of the North Carolina-based Christian Research Institute and host of the Bible Answer Man radio broadcast, told The Christian Post in an interview on Tuesday. Hanegraff compared a Higgs Boson End Times theory to the theory of the Big Bang, which "seems to correspond to reality but doesn't in any way undermine a biblical worldview."
"Taken at face value, the result implies that eventually (in 10100 years or so) an unlucky quantum fluctuation will produce a bubble of a different vacuum, which will then expand at the speed of light, destroying everything," wrote Joseph Lykken, a theorist at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, and Maria Spiropulu of the California Institute of Technology.
"The idea is that the Higgs field could someday twitch and drop to a lower energy state, like water freezing into ice, thereby obliterating the workings of reality as we know it," The New York Times reported.
This method of universal obliteration could be the way God destroys and recreates the universe as promised in Revelation, Hanegraaff explained. "Romans 8 says that the universe now groans in travail for its liberation from decay."
Nevertheless, the "Bible Answer Man" did not wholly endorse this theory. "The caveat is that it assumes no divine intervention," Hanegraaff pointed out. "We can say yes, just as modern cosmology does not control the hand of the designer, so modern scientific theory does not preclude that it is divine intervention that brings the universe to an end." In other words, while science may predict the way the universe is destroyed, it cannot say that God was not behind it.
All science is contingent on something already existing, Hanegraaff argued. Although it "assumes there's no divine intervention," it does not explain the fundamental reason for the world around us. The "Bible Answer Man" listed four logical possibilities to explain the existence of the universe – that it is a figment of our imagination, that it sprang from nothing, that it existed from all eternity, and that God created it.
The first theory, Hanegraaff explained, is dismissed as "solipsism." The idea that everything came from nothing without a creator also "flies in the face of common sense," and the argument that the universe existed from eternity is not scientifically viable, since the expansion of the universe shows it would have died a cold or hot death by now.
"It stretches credulity to the breaking point that nothing can create everything so there has to be an uncaused first cause that creates everything." The only viable option, Hanegraaff argued, is God's creation ex nihilo.
But "this god particle, does it explain away God?" the "Bible Answer Man" recounted his children asking. This very question, he explained, shows a misunderstanding of the scientific theory.
The Higgs-Boson theory merely states that "everything consists of fermeons and bosons," Hanegraaff explained. Before the discovery of the "god particle," scientists thought everything was made up of protons, electrons and neutrons. The Higgs Boson theory instead says that all matter is composed of particles called Fermeons and field of force are made out of Bosons.
When it comes to God, "nothing's changed because you still have something from which everything else comes as opposed to the supposition of the naturalist that nothing creates everything," the radio host explained.
While Hanegraaff acknowledged that the Higgs Boson theory of End Times may accurately predict the way the universe will end, he disagreed as to the timing. "The numbers that are being proposed are so extreme that they probably don't correspond with reality," he argued. "We know from a biblical standpoint that human beings are going to be around when Jesus comes a second time, when the universe is to be restored and the dead raised incorruptible, as 1 Corinthians 15 says."
The "Bible Answer Man" noted that many Christians have falsely prophesied when the end of the world would occur, and on each date they are proven wrong. There is no certainty that the scientific prediction of 10100 years is accurate. It is, after all, an estimation.