Jason Lisle Explains the Sun

Once again we visit Jason Lisle — the creationist astrophysicist — at his own website. After previously working for the Institute for Creation Research, and then ol’ Hambo’s Answers in Genesis, he’s now running his own show — the Biblical Science Institute.

He just posted Worlds of Creation: The Sun. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis, and occasional Curmudgeonly interjections that look [like this]:

“And God made the two great lights, the greater light to govern the day, and the lesser light to govern the night; He made the stars also.” (Genesis 1:16).

Yes, that’s what the Good Book says. In full context, starting with Genesis 1:14 (King James version, of course) it says:

14 And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years:

15 And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so.

16 And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.

17 And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth,

18 And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good.

19 And the evening and the morning were the fourth day.

That’s right, the Sun didn’t exist until the fourth day of creation. But don’t be confused, dear reader. Jason tells us:

The purpose of the Sun, the reason it was created, was to govern the day by setting its boundaries, to give light upon the Earth, and to separate light from darkness (Genesis 1:14-19). It is for our benefit! The sun is not a god, although many ancient cultures worshipped it as such. It is not the primary or ultimate source of life. Rather it is a creation of the God who is the primary, ultimate source of life. Perhaps this is why God Himself provided light on Earth for the first three days, delaying the creation of the sun until day 4. It shows that the sun is not primary.

Aha, that explains it! The Sun wasn’t needed to provide light, so it’s creation was delayed to emphasize its insignificance. Jason continues:

The sun is a creation of God to give light upon the Earth and to govern the day and separate light from dark. And the sun does exactly these things. It illuminates the Earth and governs the day by determining its boundary; if the sun is above the horizon, it is day, otherwise it is night. [Oh, that’s how it works!] But the way in which the sun fulfills its God-ordained role is fascinating, and altogether unexpected.

Unexpected? Let’s read on:

We might at first suspect that the sun is relatively small, close to the Earth, and circles the Earth every 24 hours. After all, that’s all it would take to accomplish its purpose. [Only an idiot would think that!] A human engineer would not waste resources by building something that is far in excess of its intended purpose. And indeed, many ancient cultures believed that the sun was an object much smaller than Earth and that it circled the Earth once every day.

Jason doesn’t mention it, but that’s precisely the biblical view of things. Everyone knows that Yahweh caused the sun and moon to stand still, so that during the conquest of Canaan, Joshua could finish a battle in daylight. Instead of that, Jason tells us:

But God is not an engineer; He is God. His thinking is infinitely superior to ours. And since He creates out of nothing, He is not limited by resources. So, we should not suppose that God must do things the way we would. That would be bad theology and bad science. And astronomy is full of counter-examples. The sun does all the things required of it, but it does far more than this. Not only does it illuminate and determine daytime for Earth, but for all the planets and moons of the solar system. [Why?] Furthermore, this greater light is far larger than the Earth – over 100 times the diameter of Earth. And it is not the sun that goes around the Earth, but the Earth that orbits the sun. [What about Galileo’s heresy trial?] The Lord certainly has a wonderful sense of irony. And He has ways of humbling us when we feel that the entire universe should revolve around us. It doesn’t!

It’s amazing that Jason can be aware of all this and still be a young-Earth creationist — but that’s what he is. Everyone remembers Jason Lisle’s “Instant Starlight” Paper. Anyway, after skipping several paragraphs of astronomical information about the Sun, we come to this:

The sun is designed to accommodate life on Earth. [Designed!] It is the right distance and right temperature for the Earth to have liquid water – an essential ingredient for life. Some stars are far hotter and brighter than the sun. In order for a planet orbiting a blue star to have the right temperature for life, it would have to orbit at a much greater distance. But blue stars emit far more ultraviolet radiation than the sun. Such radiation is destructive to life. Red dwarf stars are far cooler and fainter than the sun. To have liquid water, a planet orbiting a red dwarf would have to orbit much closer than Earth does. But red dwarf stars produce far less visible light in proportion to infrared radiation than the sun does. The sky of such a world would be considerably darker than that of Earth.

Ooooooooooooh! Everything is perfect, just for us! And now we come to the end:

The sun unusually stable. Many stars pulsate, drastically changing their size and brightness over time, sometimes in a matter of days. Such pulsations would produce extreme temperature variations on any planet in orbit, making life impossible. … The Lord designed the sun to do what it does; and it does it very well.

We don’t know what to say about stuff like this, from someone like Jason. What do you think, dear reader?

Copyright © 2020. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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17 responses to “Jason Lisle Explains the Sun

  1. How does he know that the Bible is not to be taken literally in saying that the Sun (usually) goes around the Earth daily? The way that everyone read from the Bible for a couple of thousand years.
    As you point out, the Bible tells us that among the purposes of the motion of the Sun and Moon is to make the distinction between day and night, and for the passage of days, seasons and years. How, then, were there three days and nights before there were the Sun and Moon in the firmament?
    And why make the fine tuning for the placement of the Sun, when God can ignore the laws of nature in making life on Earth look like it has been evolving for billions of years?

  2. BTW a quibble. The Sun going around the Earth and the Earth going around the Sun are not the contrasting alternatives. The one is about explaining the day, the other is about
    The year (and seasons). It is possible to have a daily rotation of the Earth fixed in place at the center of the universe.

  3. Michael Fugate

    Not to mention what does a day mean without a fixed reference. When it is day in LA it is night in Mumbai. And what about the seasons? Did God create in the summer when he had extra time?

  4. Reading Jason’s gibberish, a newfound respect for 6th century Irish monks who lived in stone beehives has arisen. They could not possibly have realized how indescribably mad some of the people who inherited their work would be.

  5. @TomS: Yeah, I always wondered how there were evenings and mornings before the sun was invented. If Jason hasn’t abandoned his training as a physicist, maybe he’ll figure out how his favorite god managed to have days and nights without the sun, and why he bothered to make the thing if he didn’t need it. I’d love to see the differential equations!

  6. Theodore Lawry

    What Jason “The Oblivious” Lisle describes, in some detail, is how the sun “fulfills its purpose” using only natural laws and forces. That is exactly why atheists say that science has proved that we don’t need God, at least as far as the sun (and many other natural phenomena) are concerned. “There are none so blind as they who will not see,” and Jason (PhD in astronomy) is one of them!

  7. “since He creates out of nothing”
    The fatal flaw of naturalistic explanations is supposed to be that nothing can comes from nothing …..

    “He is not limited by resources.”
    An excellent argument for Intelligent Falling! Nobody needs Newton.

    “It is the right distance and right temperature for the Earth to have liquid water – an essential ingredient for life.”
    Suddenly Jason’s god does limit himself by resources.

    “We don’t know what to say about stuff like this”
    Simple. Jason is arguing for the well known predetermined conclusion. In other words: business like usual.

  8. @Theodore Lawry
    Thank you.

  9. Sun and earth both go around the common centre of gravity. Does that get Galileo off the hook?

  10. @hans435
    Nothing in astronomy makes sense except in the light of heliocentrism.

  11. TomS: “BTW a quibble. The Sun going around the Earth and the Earth going around the Sun are not the contrasting alternatives.”

    I love you, man.

    Even allowing the center of the earth to be arbitrarily chosen as the center of the universe in some circumstances (geocentrism), it is a totally separate question whether to consider the earth itself motionless (ie, no rotation).

  12. Galileo pointed out that the Aristotle-Ptolemy model of the heavens was inconsistent with the Biblical account of the Sun and Moon standing still for Joshua.
    In that model, the daily motion of the fixed stars takes about 4 minutes less than 24 hours. (See the discussion about “stellar day” and “sidereal day” in the article “Rotation of the Earth” in Wikipedia”.) The proper motion of the Sun is west to east which makes the day 24 hours long. If the Sun ceased its motion, it would make the day four minutes shorter, rather than usefully longer for Joshua.
    Technically, the Church was accepting the science of the day – the Aristotle-Ptolemy model – over the literal text of the Bible. Today’s geocentists generally use Tycho Brahe’s model. I don’t know how that model deals with this technical detail.

  13. Michael Fugate

    So is the sun just a marker and not a light producer? Light comes from the unknown source when God said “Fiat lux”? Or did the sun’s role change?

  14. Genesis 1 does not use the words for Sun and Moon, but I think that everyone knows that they are meant by the “lamps” in the firmament. And they are described as giving light to the Earth.

  15. Michael Fugate

    Then was the light on day one metaphorical?

  16. I am not aware of any modern explanation of what the authors and audience made of these rather obvious difficulties. I find it difficult to understand the lapses in continuity.

  17. We don’t know what to say about stuff like this, from someone like Jason. What do you think, dear reader?

    Ok, so here’s what I think. Jason’s Biblical Science Institute should be shortened to simply the BS Institute.

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