Fake News and the Truth

Fake news only has credibility when the sources are not checked and it appears that someone reputable was not actually present. in the digital age when things can be made to appear real, altering perceptions gets even easier. It is no different in things that appear scientific. Are they? Who was present?

We observed the moon with a class two days ago. For most students, it was the first time to look through a telescope. You can see the faces. They were excited on a cloudy night!  It cleared only briefly. While cloudy, I made a moon crater of mud, then used a flashlight to show light effects as the sun angle changed. It seemed simple enough, but a student came and asked, “Do the craters change?” She asked because it appears they do, but they don’t. They change in appearance, or what is apparent to an observer, but they do not change.

Last night we looked at the lunar eclipse. About 50-60 excited teenagers, 6 staff, and two of us with two telescopes looked at the sky, asked questions, laughed, and had a good time for three hours. I had to explain, repeatedly, that the moon does not change, but its appearance does. During the last two hours I did four sketches. They looked back and forth from the moon to the sketch a hundred times, and asked more questions.

During all that process I explained lunar origins. It is not hard. Genesis states the planetary body’s creation and purpose along with the sun. So, I explained the dance between the two. I explained the effects on the earth — down to the lovely effects of cleaning Manila’s harbor of the worst of its pollution because of ocean currents. But, this particular night, the beauty of a full lunar eclipse under rare clear skies was a sight they will not forget. And shouldn’t.

Fake news is effective if the description is detailed and the contrived graphics are superb, but no one checks if the authors were there and how they came up with their story. What are the assumptions by which they “see” things? A story has no such requirements. Hyper-extrapolation in most any direction is acceptable. But what if no one was even remotely considered to be present? Lunar beginnings (the stories made to explain its beginning, are a story, but the assumptions that delete God and extrapolate from present processes are simply not consistent nor plausible. The Author, a rather unknown but powerful figure, provided the first Person information. He cannot lie by definition.

Scientists and specialists that deny (not all do) the Creator’s explanation have a story of their own. It is just that: a story, a popular story. It is part of a bigger story — a story that goes from a sort-of bang to microbes to microbiologists. The graphics are superb on PBS, BBC, and various other broadcast media. Papers are replete with artists concepts. Descriptions are long and arduous. But, no one was there. Long ages make things supposedly more palatable, but it is still a very big swallow when all the fancy words are taken away and a person observes the inexorable decay on earth and the heavens that is taking place.

The incredible variety, complexity, law-abiding, measurable universe also keeps staring at us. It speaks for itself like a giant arrow that points to the One who began it all. That is what is echoed in Hebrews 1, John 1, Colossians 1;15 and many other places. They affirm Genesis 1. He did it. It was not an experiment. It did not take long. He liked what He made.

So, the joy of watching planetary bodies interplay so we could see the lunar eclipse was just dandy. There was no fake news, no claim of a self-arising universe or claims that an astrophysicist had great great great ancestors who trace back to primordial soup. I simply quoted Psalm 19:1.

The heavens declare the glory of God.

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  1. Great article, Roland…

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