I ask this after seeing a documentary on BBC TV, the evening of 27 October 2021, where Professor Brian Cox started a new series on the universe. This first episode dealt with the way the universe created the birth of stars, how the death of stars gave rise to heavier elements (vital for life) so that when our sun had been around for a few billion years, there were enough heavy elements to create life on a planet at just the right distance from it, where an atmosphere could retain them. (The eminent physicist used the word ‘created’, not the phrase, ‘gave rise to’.)
But then he said (several times) that, in a sense, the stars did create life, so it was understandable that people used to worship the sun as a god, for to them the sun WAS a god! It had given rise to life.
He combined this with claiming there was no intelligent, creator God, but that we owe the marvel of our life to our second-generation sun, which, in turn, had been created by the universe which had been a nursery for billions of suns. He could have concluded, “Let us gaze in wonder at our god-like sun!” I’m a bit surprised that he did not, though the concluding shot seemed to have him doing just that.
I want to ask Christians who (like me) don’t object in principle to theories about the Big Bang and developments thereafter, if such a naturalistic INTERPRETATION of life and meaning is pseudo-science that should be flagged up as potentially dangerous in going beyond the remit of science. Further, does this not actively seek to undermine peoples’ faith in an intelligent creator God, substituting him for things the Creator created? And have not Christians been warned centuries ago about those who worship the creation rather than the Creator (Romans 1:25)?
On the point about stars giving meaning to life here on earth, that claim was also repeated more than once by Professor Cox. Yet the atheist philosopher Thomas Nagal has written this in his book “Mind and Cosmos – why the Neo-Darwinian view of the world is almost certainly false”:
“But if the mental is not itself merely physical, it cannot be fully explained by physical science. Evolutionary naturalism implies that we shouldn’t take any of our convictions seriously, including the scientific world picture on which evolutionary naturalism itself depends.” (OUP, 2012) p14.
The point here is that naturalism, and therefore atheism, undermines the foundations of the very rationality that is needed to construct or understand or believe in any kind of argument whatsoever, let alone a scientific one.
That is why I’m asking why a documentary such as this seems to have an agenda of replacing belief in an intelligent Creator God with a view of stars being god-like creators of life and meaning. Is that not a star too far?
Please note that I am NOT asking for stuff about the age of the universe, or seeking attacks on science. I just want to know if other Christians who appreciate science (as I do) have points to make about where science should end, and speculation based on atheistic interpretation begins – the latter being a subtle danger to watch out for. Additional Source: Can Science Explain Everything, pp 47-49, John C. Lennox, 2019
EDIT in view of concerns about this Q being off-topic: I am merely using the BBC documentary and Prof. Cox's comments as an example of what I'm asking about. As one answer shows, such a pseudo-scientific trend was spotted back in 1968. Have Christians who appreciate science got other examples, or would you disagree that this is happening at a subtle level?