Good Heavens!  The Human Side of Astronomy
COMETS! Part 1 - Did They Help Start Life On Earth?

COMETS! Part 1 - Did They Help Start Life On Earth?

January 9, 2021

Come along and ride a comet with Wayne and Dan as they explore the mysteries and intrigue of these celestial wonders!  Why are they so regular? Why are they so surprising? How do they behave? What are they made of? From where did they come? And could they have seeded life on our planet?  From Halley and ISON to the present day extraordinary accomplishment of the European Space Agency's Rosetta mission to Comet 67P, comets continue to fascinate us. Come and see what's up with comets and find out how you can catch one in 2021! 

To see a video trailer for this episode, go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MfHWqYxIaOo

 

See the book on The Greatest Comets in History on Amazon.

See the technical book, "The Mystery of Life's Origin" on Amazon

See Wayne’s article on comets and the origin of life at https://creationanswers.net/answersblog.

 

Podbean enables our podcast to be on Apple Podcasts and other major podcast platforms.  To support Good Heavens! on Podbean as a patron, you can use the Podbean app, or go to https://patron.podbean.com/goodheavens.  This goes to Wayne Spencer. If you would like to give to the ministry of Watchman Fellowship or to Daniel Ray, you can donate at https://www.watchman.org/store/donations. Donations to Watchman are tax deductible. 

 

Good Heavens! is a production of Watchman Fellowship, Inc. A 501 C (3) educational non-profit Christian research organization providing the body of Christ with resources on apologetics, world religions, cults, and non-Christian worldviews. Visit our main site at Watchman.orgIf you enjoy Good Heavens! be sure to check out our other podcast Apologetics Profile. We feature conversations and interviews about Islam, Mormonism, Jehovah's Witness, science and other apologetics topics from top-notch authors and guests! 

Image credit:  TRAPPIST/E. Jehin/ESO

The Harmony of Creation Part 2 with Dr. Christina George

The Harmony of Creation Part 2 with Dr. Christina George

December 22, 2020

We live in a fragmented world where everything seems to be classified, separated, divided and reduced to its subatomic bareness. Morality seems subjective, beauty is illusory and subjective, and we are confused about what is ultimately true about the world. 

We've lost or are barely holding on to the idea that it's not only possible, but absolutely necessary to see the world as being reconciled in Christ. Despite what appears to us to be a host of unending confusion and fragmentation, we are assured by God that He upholds all things by the word of His power (Hebrews 1:1-3; Col. 1:16-20; John 1:1-9). 

From stars to sparrows to the very hairs of our head, God's truth reigns and rules supremely and sovereignly. 

On part two of our discussion with Dr. Christina George, we further examine the role of music in our lives and how it helps us to recapture a holistic view of the cosmos and our place within it. Come and see. 

For more information on Christie's work, please visit her at http://cjgeorge.com

The quote mentioned in the introduction comes from James E. Dolezal's book, All That is in God, available on Amazon.

Podbean enables our podcast to be on Apple Podcasts and other major podcast platforms.  To support Good Heavens! on Podbean as a patron, you can use the Podbean app, or go to https://patron.podbean.com/goodheavens.  This goes to Wayne Spencer. If you would like to give to the ministry of Watchman Fellowship or to Daniel Ray, you can donate at https://www.watchman.org/store/donations. Donations to Watchman are tax deductible.

The Harmony of Creation Part 1 with Dr. Christina George

The Harmony of Creation Part 1 with Dr. Christina George

December 20, 2020

There is a music in creation for those who have the ears to ear it. From the singing stars present at the foundation of the Earth, to the song of Moses after the miraculous crossing of the Yam Suf, to the silent songs of nature, from stars to sparrows, as well as songs we make as image bearers of God, all point to a kingdom and country not of this world. 

Hearing this music helps us to understand the world more holistically, enabling us to perceive it all centered upon the risen Lord Jesus - from science, to poetry, literature, theology, & music - all things were created by Him and for Him. He upholds all things by the word of His power. 

Creation centered upon Jesus is the grandest of fairy tales and we are all characters and subjects of the King of king and Lord of lords. As followers of Christ, we live in what Tolkien and Lewis called the “true myth”, the true story to which all other myths point. Ours is a world alive with wonder, awe, and majesty, and we can know the Author Himself. 

Our very special guest on this two-part episode of Good Heavens! is professional musicologist Dr. Christina George. Through song and music, Christie strives to unites beauty, philosophy, and theology together to help people see creation more holistically. In our darkening world of fragmentation, isolation, and niche specialization, Christie’s ministry is a much needed encouraging and thoughtful light. 

For more on Christie’s work, you can visit her website, http://cjgeorge.com

 

Podbean enables our podcast to be on Apple Podcasts and other major podcast platforms.  To support Good Heavens! on Podbean as a patron, you can use the Podbean app, or go to https://patron.podbean.com/goodheavens.  This goes to Wayne Spencer. If you would like to give to the ministry of Watchman Fellowship or to Daniel Ray, you can donate at https://www.watchman.org/store/donations .

Donations to Watchman are tax deductible.

The Expanse of Heaven with Dr. Danny Faulkner (Part 2)

The Expanse of Heaven with Dr. Danny Faulkner (Part 2)

December 16, 2020

This is part two of our conversation with chief veteran astronomer of Answers in Genesis, Dr. Danny Faulkner. If you've not caught part one, you don't want to miss it!  On this episode Danny and Wayne answer questions we took from Twitter, we talk about the recent tragic news about the Arecibo Radio Telescope in Puerto Rico collapsing, and we talk about a some unusual objects that passed through our solar system in recent times. And of course, we discuss how we think all of this news about the heavens, as well as our fascination with the cosmos, all point to the glory of God in Christ. 

 

Dr. Danny Faulkner holds a PhD in Astronomy from Indiana University.  He taught at the University of South Carolina Lancaster for over 26 years.  He now works as a researcher, author, and speaker for Answers in Genesis (answersingenesis.org).  Check out Danny's blog.

 

Podbean enables our podcast to be on Apple Podcasts and other major podcast platforms.  To support Good Heavens! on Podbean as a patron, you can use the Podbean app, or go to https://patron.podbean.com/goodheavens.  This goes to Wayne Spencer. If you would like to give to the ministry of Watchman Fellowship or to Daniel Ray, you can donate at https://www.watchman.org/store/donations .

Donations to Watchman are tax deductible.

The Expanse of Heaven - with Dr. Danny Faulkner of Answers In Genesis (Part 1)

The Expanse of Heaven - with Dr. Danny Faulkner of Answers In Genesis (Part 1)

December 6, 2020

On day two of the Creation week, the Bible tells us that God created the "expanse" (raqia in Hebrew). For centuries, many have believed the "expanse" to be made of something solid. On day four, God creates the greater and lesser lights and the stars and places them all in the expanse. The translators of the Septuagint translated raqia as the stereoma, a solid, crystal sphere. Jerome translated raqia into the Latin firmamentum. In this special two-part episode of Good Heavens! Wayne and Dan chat with veteran astronomer Dr. Danny Faulkner about what he has come to understand raqia and how he is using this concept to create a biblical cosmology. We think you'll find his insights quite fascinating! 

 

Dr. Danny Faulkner holds a PhD in Astronomy from Indiana University.  He taught at the University of South Carolina Lancaster for over 26 years.  He now works as a researcher, author, and speaker for Answers in Genesis (answersingenesis.org).

Check out Danny's blog.

 

Wayne maintains Good Heavens! on Podbean. Podbean enables our podcast to be on Apple Podcasts and other major podcast platforms. If you would like to help Wayne defer the annual cost of maintaining Good Heavens! on Podbean, you can donate any amount at https://patron.podbean.com/goodheavens. Donations to Wayne are not tax deductible. 

If you would like to give to the ministry of Watchman Fellowship or to Daniel Ray, you can donate at https://www.watchman.org/store/donations/

Donations to Watchman are tax deductible. 

 

String Theory and Faith with Dr. Tom Rudelius

String Theory and Faith with Dr. Tom Rudelius

November 25, 2020

What is string theory? In the field of physics, it's a relatively novel idea that suggests at the very smallest level, subatomic particles are made up of tiny, vibrating filaments, rather than point-like particles. These filaments are known as "strings", each with particular resonances, like strings on a musical instrument comprising different notes. The vibrations of the strings produce the particles physicists understand today. 

But string theory is still theoretical and somewhat counterintuitive to common sense, as the mathematics proposes that there are extra dimensions in our universe. But neither the strings or the extra dimensions have been detected and our technology is not powerful or sophisticated enough to detect them. 

So is string theory really science or just philosophical and mathematical speculation? And what does such a unique theory of the physical world have to do with the Christian faith? 

Come and see! Our guest this week is Dr. Tom Rudelius, a theoretical physicist whose field of expertise is in string theory and early cosmology (the study of the very early universe). Tom is also a follower of Christ. Come and hear his remarkable testimony and how he sees & understands the intersection of science and faith. 

For more about Tom, you can check out some work he has done with the Veritas Forum below. Some of the scientific and theological views expressed in our guests work do not necessarily reflect the views of Watchman.org, but we do strive to find common ground with our guests in the wonders of creation, in the glory of God and the person of the Lord Jesus. 

https://youtu.be/8R_TTp5c4iI

http://www.veritas.org/multiverse-podcast/ 

https://veritaschristoetecclesiae.wordpress.com/author/rudelius/

The blog by Aron Wall Tom mentioned, Undivided Looking. 

Brian Greene's work on string theory. (He is not a Christian, so far as we know, but he is a leading expert on string theory.)  Part 1 of a NOVA video on string theory here: 
https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/video/the-elegant-universe-part-1/

This podcast is provided through Good Heavens on Podbean.com.  To support this program go to https://goodheavens.podbean.com/  (or the Podbean App) and look for the Become a patron link in the upper right.

God, Black Holes, and the End of the Universe with Sarah Salviander

God, Black Holes, and the End of the Universe with Sarah Salviander

November 4, 2020

A special Good Heavens!/Apologetics Profile presentation of Dr. Sarah Salviander's chapter on God and black holes from The Story of the Cosmos - How the Heavens Declare the Glory of God.   TheStoryoftheCosmos.com

What is a black hole? Where are they? How were they discovered? How does the majesty, mystery, and enigma of black holes point to the glory of God? Come along on this special episode and find out!  Dr. Sarah Salviander received her PhD in astrophysics from the University of Texas at Austin. She was a researcher at UT for sixteen years, where she specialized in the study of quasars, supermassive black holes, and galaxies. She is the author of several peer-reviewed journal papers and a comprehensive Astronomy & Astrophysics homeschool curriculum. She is currently writing books about the remarkable confluence between Christianity and modern science. 

Author Website: https://sarahsalviander.com.   

You can follow Sarah on Twitter at @SarahSalviander.  

Sarah presented her talk at LifePoint Church in League City, Texas (South Houston) on October 21st, 2020, as part of their Wednesday Night “Unfiltered. Conversations that Matter” apologetics ministry. Thanks to Trevor Shakiba and Pastor Josh Sharpe for coordinating the event and for the assistance in the production of the video. You can visit the church’s website at https://golifepointchurch.org.   LifePoint provided the audio and video. Daniel Ray of Watchman Fellowship edited and produced the final video.

 

For more information on the ministry of Watchman Fellowship, visit our website at https://Watchman.org

You can also see the video of this presentation here.
https://youtu.be/xi0CwpY5ICg

 

This prodcast is provided through Good Heavens on Podbean.com.  To support this program go to https://goodheavens.podbean.com/  (or the Podbean App) and look for the Become a patron link in the upper right.

 

The Wardrobe at 70 with Dr. Michael Ward

The Wardrobe at 70 with Dr. Michael Ward

October 28, 2020

C.S. Lewis's The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe turned 70 this month (October 2020). In the midst of a difficult year of pandemics and politics, now is the perfect time to reacquaint yourself with C.S. Lewis's timeless classic. What's in your "spare oom" that can lead to adventures undreamt and unsought? 

Come along with us on this special combined episode of Good Heavens! and Apologetics Profile as we celebrate the imaginative, cosmological, literary, and apologetic wonders of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe with C.S. Lewis scholar Dr. Michael Ward. 

Dr. Ward served as Daniel Ray's master's thesis advisor at Houston Baptist University in 2016. Daniel is the first to have written a master's thesis on Dr. Ward's 2008 book (Amazon), Planet Narnia - The Seven Heavens in the Imagination of C.S. Lewis.  

Michael is the author of several published works and scholarly articles about Lewis, the imagination, and theology. He has lectured in 30 of the 50 states, holds a doctorate of divinity from St. Andrews, and has made numerous radio, podcast, and television appearances. More on Michael's work can be found at https://michaelward.net/

Michael Ward with Eric Metaxas in conversation about Planet Narnia.  

Michael and others from around the world reading from The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.  (on narniaweb.com)

Laura Miller's book mentioned in the broadcast (Amazon). The Magician's Book -  A Skeptic's Adventure in Narnia  

Image credit:  Refuge31 Films

The Constellations - Leo the Lion

The Constellations - Leo the Lion

October 21, 2020

This is the second episode in our series on the constellations from a biblical perspective. Leo is our featured constellation on this episode. We talk about Leo's kingly nature, a little bit of its legend and lore, and explore a few of the sights you can see within this ancient pattern of stars. 

 

The Bible says that the heavens declare the glory of God, they do not predict the future nor tell anyone what their fortune is. But they can and should remind us of God's glory and His faithfulness to us. 

 

So enjoy stargazing! Learn all you can about the heavens and all their hosts and how they point us to the glory of God in Christ Jesus. Here are some references mentioned in the broadcast. Not all sources mentioned specifically endorse the Christian faith, but they are good references for astronomy and the history of star and constellation lore. 

From the International Astronomical Union

https://www.iau.org/public/themes/constellations/

Burnham's Celestial Handbook
https://www.amazon.com/Burnhams-Celestial-Handbook-Observers-Universe/dp/0486235688/

Constellation Guide website

https://www.constellation-guide.com/constellation-map/zodiac-constellations/

Good Heavens is a ministry of Watchman Fellowship

https://www.watchman.org/

 

 

Let There Be Science! Why God Loves Science and Science Needs God

Let There Be Science! Why God Loves Science and Science Needs God

October 13, 2020

Join us as we have a lovely chat with physics professor and Fellow of the Royal Society, Dr. Tom Mcleish and physics & science teacher David Hutchings, both from the UK. We discuss why science and the Christian faith are not only not incompatible, but that science truly needs God, specifically the Lord Jesus. 

Their book, the the title of this podcast episode, is not a superficial Christian sticky-note attached to a highly secularized scientific methodology. No! Rather, it is a very easy-to-grasp, edifying, Christ-centered, tour-de-force from which readers of all ages and backgrounds can appreciate and learn something about the intersection of science and Christianity. They have written an excellent and accessible book on this topic and give us the confidence and encouragement to see how God is for "good science" and why good science must have Christ as its foundation. 

Jesus came to reconcile man with God, but that reconciliation includes reorienting our minds (Rom. 12:1-2) to see all of creation as a reflection of God's nature, of His invisible attributes, expressions of his wisdom (Job 28; 38-41). Creation as seen through the lens of Scripture, gives us reason for exploring and investigating it (Ps. 111:2) and is what inspired many of the great scientists of the past, as Tom and David point out through the many stories and examples in their book. 

So come and have a listen to our fascinating discussion about God and science, for the glory of God! 

Find out more about Dave and Tom's  book - "Let there Be Science, Why God Loves Science and Science Needs God".  Available at  https://www.amazon.com/Let-There-Be-Science-science/dp/0745968635/

Image credit:  NASA/JPL Caltech (Galex mission)

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