Sunday, December 22, 2013

Infinity and relativity

Math is a beautiful theoretical framework that helps us describe the messy world.  But I think that its lack of "real-world-ness" also gives us some insight beyond this world.  The Bible says that God is boundless, that he exists outside of time and space.  So lets say that God is infinity.

Infinity is interesting because you can't do a lot to mess with it.  What is infinity + 1?  Infinity.  What is infinity divided by 3?  Infinity.  The last problem is particularly interesting because of the Trinity.  God is three persons, and yet each is fully God.  At first glance this seems ridiculous, and yet God behaves just like the infinite being that He is.  Weird, huh?

Now think about Einstein's theory of relativity.  I can hardly pretend to know how to explain it, but I can say that one key consequence is that time does not always move forward at the same rate for all observers in the universe.  I always struggled with the idea of God living outside of time because such a concept is so far from our daily reality, but once I realized that experimental data has confirmed the non-uniformity of time, it became much more palatable to assume that God had a totally different reference frame.  I think this concept provides some explanation on how God can be all-knowing of what will happen in our lives and yet we are given free will with our choices.

Regardless of whether I turn out to be dead on or laughably far off, it helped me open my mind to the fact that scripture can be correct in what it teaches without waiting for humanity to figure out the scientific truths that explain how He did it.

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