Wonder Wanderings 3: Fine-Tuning

Wonder Wanderings is a weekly blog series at Melody+Theology, where I point out fascinating things I’ve come across in my reading wanderings. These amazing things show us an amazing God and yet another reason to marvel at His power and creativity.

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Imagine covering the entire North American continent in dimes and stacking them until they reached the moon. Now imagine stacking just as many dimes again on another billion continents the same size as North America. If you marked one of those dimes and hid it in the billions of piles you’d assembled, the odds of a blindfolded friend picking out the correct dime is approximately 1 in 10^37–the same level of precision required in the strong nuclear force and the expansion rate of the universe.

Imagine stretching a measuring tape across the entire known universe. Now imagine one particular mark on the tape represents the correct degree of gravitational force required to create the universe we have. If this mark were moved more than one inch from its location (on a measuring tape spanning the entire universe), the altered gravitational force would prevent our universe from coming into existence.

Imagine trying to fire a bullet at a one-inch target on the other side of the observable universe. The accuracy required to accomplish such a feat has been calculated at 1 in 10^60. Compare this to the precision required in calibrating the mass density of the universe (fine-tuned to within 1 unit in 10^59).

Imagine comparing the universe to an aircraft carrier like the USS John C. Stennis (measuring 1,092 feet long with a displacement of 100,000 tons). If this carrier were as fine-tuned as the mass density of our universe, subtracting a billionth of a trillionth of the mass of an electron from the total mass of the aircraft carrier would sink the ship.

Starting to appreciate the level of fine-tuning in the foundational particles and forces in the universe?

— J. Warner Wallace, God’s Crime Scene: A Cold-Case Detective Examines the Evidence for a Divinely Created Universe, Kindle Location 628.

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