A Christmas Story for the Cognoscenti
A String Theory Christmas Part One
Stephen Hawking says, “M-theory is the only candidate for a complete theory of the universe.” 1
Michio Kaku believes M-theory to be “so concise that its underlying formula would fit on a T-shirt.” 2
M-theory tells us that time is made of tiny loops of 6-dimensional energy vibrating at a specific frequency, and space is made of tiny loops of 6-dimensional energy vibrating at a specific frequency. Likewise, gravityand matter and light are made of similar loops of energy vibrating at their own, specific frequencies.
According to string theorist Brian Greene, these loops are so small that if an atom were enlarged to the size of our solar system – with the sun as the nucleus and Pluto as the nearest orbiting electron – a single loop of energy would be the size of a small tree.
Brian Greene calls our universe “a silent symphony of string.” 3
So if Hawking, Kaku, Greene and all the other string theorists are correct, you’re no longer silly to see our space-time continuum as the continuing echo of the voice of God.
You remember the story, don’t you?
In the opening chapter of Genesis, the only information we’re given about the creation of the universe is that, “God said, Let there be light: and there was light.” And God continued to say this and that and things continued to appear. 4
God spoke our universe into existence. Scientists call that moment “the big bang.”
Later, in the book of Isaiah we read:
My thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven
and do not return there but water the earth,
making it bring forth and sprout,
giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth;
it shall not return to me empty,
but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it. 5
And in the next verse, immediately after God says that his word “will succeed in the thing for which he sent it,” he makes a promise to his word:
For you shall go out in joy
and be led forth in peace;
the mountains and the hills before you
shall break forth into singing,
and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. 5
Later, in the book of Hebrews we read:
“For the word of God is living and active… and no creature is hidden from his sight, but all things are naked and exposed to the eyes of him…” 6
I was fascinated that the writer of Hebrews declares the subject of that sentence – “the word of God” – to be alive and refers to it as “him.” But when we go back and read the opening sentence of chapter one of that book, we see it plainly written,
“In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe…” 7
But what does this have to do with the Christmas story?
Ah. I’m glad you asked.
In the second chapter of the Good News of Luke we read,
“And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; You shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.’” 8
And then in the first chapter of the Good News of Matthew we read that Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judas and his brethren, and these “begats” continue for 39 more generations until we get to Mary and Joseph and
“…there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.” 9
But John skips the begats.
John doesn’t look toward Bethlehem, but casts his gaze back to when God spoke the universe into existence in Genesis chapter one.
John’s Gospel – his “Good News” – begins thusly:
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; (the Word) and without him was not any thing made that was made…” 10
John recalls that God spoke a universe into existence: His living word went out from him and “accomplished that which he purposed, and succeeded in the thing for which he sent it.” 5
A few verses later John says,
“And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us.” 11
Think of it. Each of us is the father and mother of his words. Our words exist altogether within us, but they also go out from us.
And reveal us.
For we are made in the image of God, an echo of him.
And he gave us free will, the ability to look him in the face and say “No.” 12
The living force that went out from God continues to echo as the space-time continuum. The book of Acts goes so far as to say, “In him we live and move and have our being.” 13
And now we return to that opening chapter of John’s gospel where he tells us plainly,
“He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.” 14
Jesus was not a philosopher. He didn’t come to teach us. He came to build a bridge back to God.
He didn’t need our help and he didn’t need our permission and what he said to his friends when it was finished was, “Go tell the good news.” 15
Roy H. Williams
“Then I saw Heaven wide open, and before my eyes appeared a white horse, whose rider is called faithful and true, for his judgment and his warfare are just. His eyes are a flame of fire and there are many diadems upon his head. There is a name written upon him, known only to himself. He is dressed in a cloak dipped in blood, and the name by which he is known is the Word of God.” – Revelation 19:13
“…and to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ.” – Ephesians 3:9
1 Hawking, Stephen (2010). The Grand Design. Bantam Books. ISBN 055338466X.
2 Kaku, M. “M-Theory: The Mother of all SuperStrings”. Retrieved 2013-08-06.
3 The Elegant Universe – A Three-Hour miniseries with Brian Greene by NOVA (original PBS Broadcast Dates: October 28, 8-10 p.m. and November 4, 8-9 p.m., 2003). Various images, texts, videos and animations explaining string theory and M-theory.
4 Genesis 1:3-31
5 Isaiah 55:
6 Hebrews 4:12-13
7 Hebrews 1:1-2
8 Luke 2:8-14
9 Matthew 2:1-2
10 John 1:1-3
11 John 1:14
12 Genesis 3:1-6
13 Acts 17:28, This is echoed in Colossians 1:15-17 “The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible… all things have been created through him and for him… and in him all things hold together.
14 John 1:10-12
15 Mark 16:15