Preliminary data and images from the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) challenge secular ideas of galaxy formation and the big bang, but confirm biblical creation. 

The James Webb Space Telescope is now operational, properly calibrated, and actively collecting new images of the universe.  On July 11-12, 2022, the first images from the $10 billion space telescope were released to the public.  These included infrared images of Stephan’s Quintet (a collection of five galaxies), the Southern Ring Nebula, and portions of the Carina Nebula.  Each picture is a stunning illustration of the glory of the Lord (Psalm 19:1).  But one of the most interesting images from a scientific perspective is a deep field image showing the most distant galaxies in the universe so far detected.  This deep field image shows thousands of “mature” galaxies at distances far beyond what secular astronomers had expected.  These images are consistent with what biblical creationists predicted. 

A Brief Review of Webb

The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) was launched on December 25, 2021.  This telescope is often considered the successor to the overwhelmingly successful Hubble Space Telescope.  But the Webb is significantly larger; this gives it greater light-gathering power, meaning it can take images of fainter objects than Hubble and in less time.  Most significantly, the Webb is designed to detect infrared wavelengths – those that are “below” red and therefore invisible to human vision.  This is because one of the primary purposes of the Webb is to collect images of the most distant galaxies.  And these galaxies are highly redshifted – meaning their visible light has been shifted into the infrared.  In this sense, the James Webb Space Telescope compensates for such redshifts, showing (roughly) what these galaxies would look like if they were nearby. 

In general, the farther away a galaxy is from us, the more its light is redshifted.  This pattern is called the Hubble Law and is thought to be due to the expansion of the universe.  Such an expansion would give all galaxies a tendency to move away from other galaxies as the entire universe increases in size.  Astronomers can measure the redshift of a galaxy very precisely using spectroscopy.  Basically, the light of the galaxy is broken into its constituent wavelengths and the shift of the wavelengths associated with known elements (like hydrogen) reveals the redshift.  There is a formula that gives us the approximate distance of any galaxy based on its measured redshift.[1]  Therefore, we know the distance to any distant galaxy if its spectrum has been measured.  In fact, there are online apps where you can enter a redshift value (z) and they will compute the distance.[2]

Since the JWST is designed to probe deep into infrared wavelengths, it can detect distant galaxies with very large redshifts.  By the Hubble law, these galaxies must be extremely distant.  So, the JWST is designed to probe galaxies that are too distant to be detected by Hubble.  This is very relevant to the issue of origins because creationists and secularists made different predictions about what the JWST would find in the distant universe.  These differences are due to our different ideas about the origin of the universe.

The Secular Story

The standard secular model of origins proposes that the universe began in a big bang approximately 13.8 billion years ago.  At that time, all of space and all energy within it were compressed into a point of essentially no size called a singularity.  This point rapidly expanded, carrying extremely high temperature energy with it.  As the energy filled an increasingly large volume of space, its temperature dropped, and particles were formed from the energy.  These particles include protons, neutrons, and electrons.  By 300,000 years after the big bang, the temperature of the universe cooled enough for electrons to bind to nuclei, forming the first atoms.  These would be hydrogen, helium, and small amounts of lithium.  The heavier elements did not yet exist.

According to the secular model, by around 300 million years after the big bang, gravity acted on small regions of higher density within the gas, causing these regions to collapse into the first stars.   These stars gravitationally attracted each other to form the first galaxies.  Such galaxies would be low-mass and irregular, but gradually matured with time into larger spiral or elliptical galaxies. 

In the secular story, the first generation of stars are called population III (population 3), and contained only the three lightest elements (hydrogen, helium, and lithium) because the heavy elements did not yet exist.  Some of these first-generation stars are said to be large enough to eventually fuse the lighter elements in their core into heavier elements, like carbon, oxygen, iron, and so on.  These stars exploded (an event called a supernova) and spread these heavier elements into space.  The next generation of stars (population II) therefore contain some of the heavier elements in addition to hydrogen and helium.

Secular astronomers believe that light takes billions of years to travel from the most distant galaxies to earth.  This is because they are using the Einstein Synchrony Convention (ESC).  While that convention is not objectively wrong, it is not the only convention.  For example, using the equally-legitimate Anisotropic Synchrony Convention (ASC), light takes no time at all to travel from the most distant galaxies to earth.  Under ASC, we are seeing galaxies as they are now.  But under ESC, we are seeing galaxies as they were long ago – when they emitted the light that is just now arriving at earth. 

Secular Predictions

Since they are using ESC, secular astronomers believe that the very distant galaxies observed by the JWST will appear as they were billions of years ago when they were very young since the light we now see left those galaxies billions of years ago.  So, the most distant galaxies are also the youngest.  And since stars didn’t form until around 300 million years after the big bang, there shouldn’t be any galaxies beyond a certain distance.  300 million years after the big bang corresponds to a redshift of about 14 (using the standard cosmological parameters). 

Therefore, according to the secular model, there really shouldn’t be any galaxies beyond redshift 14, and relatively few at redshifts approaching that.  These early galaxies should be very low-mass since the stars gradually accumulate over time.  Secularists further expect that these first galaxies would have an irregular appearance as the stars collect, rather than the more mature and symmetric spiral and elliptical galaxies found nearby. 

Furthermore, since the secular model insists that the first generation of stars are pop III (no elements heavier than lithium), it follows that these early galaxies should not contain heavy elements.  The JWST has an instrument (a spectroscope) that can determine the composition of galaxies by analyzing the light they emit.  So, it is possible to test this prediction. 

Creationist Predictions

Biblical creationists reject the big bang and its billions-of-years timescale because such things are contrary to the recorded history of Genesis.  We hold that stars were made by God on the fourth day of the creation week, rather than self-assembling billions of years before earth.  Furthermore, we know that heavy elements existed before stars because the earth contains elements like oxygen (found in water molecules), and these existed on day 1 (Genesis 1:1-2) before the stars were created on day 4.  We do not believe the universe ever contained only hydrogen, helium, and lithium.  Although God could certainly have created stars with only these three elements, we have no particular reason to think that He did.  And so, we have no particular reason to expect that any pop III stars exist or have ever existed.

Since the stars were supernaturally created on day 4, and since galaxies are comprised of stars (and gas, dust, etc.), galaxies did not gradually self-assemble over billions of years.  We expect that they were created mature.  We therefore expect that even the most distant galaxies would be fully formed and substantially massive.  We expect lots of spiral and elliptical galaxies just as we observe in the near regions of the universe.

Although not all creationists agree with me, I am convinced that the Bible uses the ASC system in which we see the universe in real-time.  Therefore, in my view, we are not “looking back in time” as we peer into the distant universe, but are seeing it as it is now.  Consequently, I do not expect a lot of evidence for galaxy evolution.  I do not expect that the most distant galaxies are only partially formed, but rather I expect fully-designed galaxies including spirals and ellipticals.  And since I am convinced that galaxies were supernaturally created, I do not expect the deficit of galaxies at high redshift (that the secularists expect).

These are the predictions I published back in January before we had any data from the JWST.  You can read my original predictions here.  Namely: (1) I expected to find galaxies at higher redshifts than the secularists were expecting.  This would force secularists to conclude that galaxies formed earlier than their secular models had predicted.  (2) These galaxies would be fully-formed, not in the process of assembly.  (3) I expected evidence of some heavy elements in these galaxies, rather than pop III stars with no such elements.

Notice that these three predictions are essentially the opposite of what the secular astronomers were expecting to find.  They expected galaxies to taper off to zero by around redshift 14.   At lesser redshifts, they expected to see relatively few low-mass galaxies and in the process of formation rather than fully-formed spiral and elliptical galaxies.  And the secular model requires that the first stars would have no heavy elements. 

The JWST Observations

The JWST deep field image is centered on a cluster of galaxies called SMACS 0723.  This cluster lies at a distance of about 4 billion light years, corresponding to redshift 0.39.  Cosmically speaking, that’s relatively nearby. The reason the JWST team selected this target is because the gravity of all those galaxies in the cluster bends the light from far more distant galaxies.  This is called gravitational lensing.  Although lensing distorts the appearance of background galaxies and sometimes produces multiple images of the same galaxy, it also causes these galaxies to appear much brighter than they would otherwise.  So, if we want to see the most distant (and faintest) galaxies, using a galaxy cluster as a natural magnifying glass makes a lot of sense.  Amazingly, we can see thousands of galaxies in this image.  Some of these are from the foreground cluster, but many are much farther away.  Indeed, this deep field shows galaxies at unprecedented distances, far in excess of what most secular astronomers expected to find. 

The three images circled in yellow are actually of the same galaxy. The light from this galaxy was split into multiple images by the gravity of foreground galaxies. [Pascale, M., Unscrambling the lensed galaxies in JWST images behind SMACS0723, Astro-ph/arXiv:2207.07102v3, July 26, 2022]

A number of articles and technical preprints have been published regarding these galaxies.  Caution is in order because many of the results reported below are based on preliminary estimates of distance with more detailed follow-up observations planned for the future.[3]  So, who made the better predictions?

(1) Galaxies at Extreme Distances

In January I predicted, based on biblical principles, that the JWST would detect “fully-formed (fully-designed) galaxies at unprecedented distances.  This will force secular astronomers to adjust their estimates of when the earliest galaxies formed, pushing them much closer to the supposed big bang.  We might see headlines like ‘Webb discovers that galaxies formed much earlier than previously thought.’”  So, let’s look at some of the published articles.  The references are available in the footnotes.

One article commented on an extremely high-redshift galaxy detected in the JWST deep field.  The author states, “If the finding is confirmed, it would be one of the earliest galaxies ever observed, and its presence would indicate that galaxies started forming much earlier than many astronomers previously thought” [underline added].[4]  An article in Nature states, “Another preprint manuscript suggests that massive galaxies formed earlier in the Universe than previously known” [underline added].[5]

Of course, it is always best to go to published peer-reviewed technical literature where the paper has been vetted by experts in the field.  But the peer-review process takes time, and therefore such results are not yet available for JWST data.  In the meantime, for the best preliminary results we look to the preprinted technical papers on  This is where many physicists and astronomers publish data for the purpose of having it peer-reviewed by a wide community.  So, these papers are in the process of being peer-reviewed and the final paper may have some differences from these preprints.  What do these papers reveal about the JWST data?

One such paper states, “The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) has discovered a surprising abundance of bright galaxy candidates in the very early Universe (<500Myrs after the Big Bang), calling into question current galaxy formation models.”[6]  The researchers tentatively confirm a redshift of 12.1 from one of the JWST deep field galaxies.

Another research team reports the unexpected detection of two bright, high-redshift galaxies in JWST data.[7]  They state, “This, in turn, suggests that future deep JWST observations may identify relatively bright galaxies to much earlier epochs than might have been anticipated” [underline added].[8]  They confirm that such detections are inconsistent with the predictions of secular models, stating, “Theoretical and empirical models of early galaxy formation predicted that a 10-100× larger survey would have been required to find one such bright galaxy at z = 11 (e.g. Waters et al. 2016; Mutch et al. 2016).”[9]  (A lowercase letter “z” is what astronomers use for redshift.)  In other words, the secular models predicted that galaxies at that distance (at a redshift of 11) would be so rare that it would require 10 to 100 times more JWST images to detect just one. 

Another technical paper states, “Should followup spectroscopy validate this redshift, our Universe was already aglow with fairly massive galaxies less than 300 Myr after the Big Bang.”[10]  That is, of course, inconsistent with secular predictions.  These researchers analyzed a galaxy at redshift ~14.  They compared the JWST data with predictions from several (secular) theoretical models and found significant conflict.  Namely, “Almost all of these models predict an expected source density much less than one, making the observation of even a single object at this redshift and magnitude surprising and potentially hinting at significant differences between the physical assumptions in these models and the real early universe.”[11]  Indeed, the real universe is quite different from the big bang story.

Commenting on the large number of galaxies at extremely high redshift in the JWST data, Yan et al. state, “We have a total of 88 such candidates spreading over the two fields, some of which could be at redshifts as high as 20. Neither the high number of such objects found nor the high redshifts they reside at are expected from the previously favored predictions” [underline added].[12]  Well, they were not expected from the secular predictions anyway.  Under the standard secular assumptions, a redshift of 20 works out to a time less than 180 million years after the big bang.  However, the secular model claimed that the first stars formed about 300 million years after the big bang (at a redshift of 14).  So, those distant JWST deep field galaxies just shouldn’t be there.  It’s almost as if they were just spoken into existence by God!

Another paper states, “Early observations with the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) indicate an overabundance of bright galaxies at redshifts z ≳ 10 relative to Hubble-calibrated model predictions.”[13]  Again, a lowercase letter “z” is what astronomers use for redshift.  So, these researchers honestly report galaxies at redshifts higher than 10 in far greater numbers than the secular model predicted.  This is a problem for the secular view because it should take significant time for stars to form, and thus the number of galaxies should taper off strongly with increasing redshift.  The paper states, “Theoretical models robustly predict a sharp decline in the abundance of such objects, simply because the halo mass function is evolving rapidly at these times. Indeed, Boylan-Kolchin (2022) and Lovell et al. (2022) point out that the most extreme detections (from Labbe et al. 2022) appear to have much larger stellar masses than allowed by the standard cosmological paradigm, even if they have perfectly efficient star formation!”

Another research team states, “Early results of JWST observations have delivered bright z ≳ 10 galaxy candidates in greater numbers than expected, enabling construction of the rest-frame UV luminosity functions (LFs).”  Yet another paper states, “As a result, we report the discovery of two galaxy candidates at z∼16, only 250 million years after the Big Bang.”[14]  That is 50 million years before the first stars formed according to the big bang model.  The authors emphasize this obvious discrepancy, stating, “Again, these two candidates do not align with theoretical models which predict a significantly lower density of such bright galaxies at 𝑧 > 10” [underline added].[15]

So, regarding the detection of large numbers of galaxies at high redshifts, the creation predictions were correct, and the secular predictions were wrong.  Indeed, secularists are now claiming that galaxies formed much earlier than previously thought – the exact prediction I made back in January

(2) Mass and Structure

But what about the mass and structures of these galaxies?  Are they all low-mass, clumpy, irregular galaxies just starting to form as the secularists predicted?  Or are they fully-formed (highly structured and massive) galaxies that I predicted back in January?

A recent Washington Post article states, “The first scientific results have emerged in recent weeks, and what the telescope has seen in deepest space is a little puzzling. Some of those distant galaxies are strikingly massive. A general assumption had been that early galaxies — which formed not long after the first stars ignited — would be relatively small and misshapen. Instead, some of them are big, bright and nicely structured.”[16]

In other words, the most distant galaxies are fully formed just as creationists expected to find.  They do not show any evidence of the gradual mass-accumulation and evolution that the secularists predicted. The article continues with a quote from astronomer Garth Illingworth who states, “The models just don’t predict this.”[17] Regarding the large mass of these distant galaxies, Illingworth states, “How do you do this in the universe at such an early time? How do you form so many stars so quickly?”[18]  Well, “you” don’t.  And a “big bang” can’t.  But God can and did.

Moreover, these galaxies are nicely structured with many (spiral) disk and elliptical shapes.  The article then quotes Dan Coe of the Space Telescope Science Institute saying, “We thought the early universe was this chaotic place where there’s all these clumps of star formation, and things are all a-jumble.”[19]  But that isn’t what Webb found.  Many of these most distant galaxies have disk structure, implying that they are spirals, just like the Milky Way.

An article from New Scientist is entitled, “JWST finds galaxies may adopt Milky Way-like shape faster than thought.”[20]  The article states, “Astronomers thought that galaxies in the early universe would mostly be shapeless blobs, but an analysis of data from the James Webb Space Telescope suggests around half are disc-shaped like the Milky Way.”[21]  Of course, the article fails to mention that it was only the secular astronomers who predicted shapeless blobs; creationists predicted fully-formed galaxies, such as spirals and ellipticals.

The article continues to correctly describe the secularists’ dilemma.  “Astronomers analysing [sic] some of the first scientific data released by the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) have already seen something they weren’t expecting. A deep view of the early universe appears to show a surprisingly high number of disc-shaped galaxies, rather than a large number of clumpy, irregular ones. This suggests that the disc structures in certain galaxies, including the Milky Way, may have formed more rapidly than current theories predict.”[22]  According to the Bible, God spoke the stars into existence on day 4.   So, they needed no time to form.

A recent article from Nature states, “Some early galaxies are surprisingly complex.”[23]  Again, secularists were expecting that the most distant galaxies would be small and not yet organized into disk-shaped spirals.   “But the Webb observations suggest there are up to ten times as many distant disk-shaped galaxies as previously thought.”[24]  The article quotes astronomer Allison Kirkpatrick saying, “With the resolution of James Webb, we are able to see that galaxies have disks way earlier than we thought they did.”[25]  The article continues, “That’s a problem, she says, because it contradicts earlier theories of galaxy evolution.”[26]  “Another preprint manuscript suggests that massive galaxies formed earlier in the Universe than previously known.”[27]  Another article states, “One of the young galaxies even shows evidence of a disklike structure.”[28] 

The technical preprint papers also confirm massive, fully-formed galaxies at distances much greater than the secular predictions claimed.  One such paper is entitled, “A very early onset of massive galaxy formation.”[29]  That pretty much says it all.  The paper states, “The stellar mass density in massive galaxies is much higher than anticipated from previous studies based on rest-frame UV-selected samples: a factor of 10-30 at z∼8 and more than three orders of magnitude at z∼10.”  Three orders of magnitude means that these galaxies are more than a thousand times more massive than the secular predictions.

Another paper states, “Early data from JWST have revealed a bevy of high-redshift galaxy candidates with unexpectedly high stellar masses.”[30]  The author elaborates, “If these massive galaxies are spectroscopically confirmed and/or if other galaxies with similar properties at 𝑧 ≳ 10 are found, they will present a serious challenge for ΛCDM structure formation with parameters given by Planck Collaboration et al. (2020) because they signify the existence of a significantly larger reservoir of collapsed baryons than is possible in ΛCDM.”[31]  In other words, if these JWST galaxies really are at the distances they seem to be, then the big bang is in real trouble because it cannot account for this.  (ΛCDM is the term for the standard big bang model with the standard parameters).[32]

Another technical paper also reports the inconsistency (“tension”) of the mass of these galaxies compared to the predictions of the standard (big bang) model.  The authors state, “Either these galaxies are in tension with ΛCDM or there are unaccounted for uncertainties in their stellar mass or redshift estimates.”[33]

The JWST data refutes the secular notion that the most distant (earliest in secular thinking) galaxies would be largely irregular, not having had sufficient time to collapse into disks.  Indeed, spiral and elliptical galaxies are common at high redshifts.[34]  And the technical preprints show this.  “We discover the surprising result that at z >1.5 disk galaxies dominate the overall fraction of morphologies, with a factor of ∼10 relative higher number of disk galaxies than seen by the Hubble Space Telescope at these redshifts.”[35],[36]  Note that only secularists find this “surprising.”  We predicted mature galaxies at extreme distances (although we did not predict any specific ratio of disks to ellipticals to irregulars.)

The paper continues, “We demonstrate that these early galaxies have a more normal morphology than expected, with classifications showing that disk galaxies are much more common than previous observations suggested (e.g., Conselice et al. 2005; Margalef-Bentabol et al. 2022)….  We in fact find that at the highest redshifts probed by HST there are in fact up to 10 times more disk galaxies than we had thought, based on the JWST visual morphologies.”[37]

This is again contrary to the secular models.  The authors state, “This would challenge our ideas about mergers being a very common process, and it might be the case that mergers are only a dominant process for forming the stellar masses of certain types of galaxies, namely spheroids, which have a relatively constant merger fraction at z > 2.5 at around 10%” [underline added].[38]

So, regarding the kinds of galaxies that have been detected at extreme redshift, the creation predictions were correct.  Fully-formed galaxies exist at extreme distances: most of which are disk-shaped, implying spiral galaxies much like those found in the local universe.  The secular predictions of extremely low-mass, not-yet-structured galaxies were simply wrong.

(3) Heavy Elements or Pop III?

Finally, biblical creationists recognize that at least some heavy elements existed before the stars were created.[39]  Astronomers refer to elements heavier than helium as “metals.”  The quantity of heavy elements in a galaxy is called its metallicity.  Thus, I proposed back in January that the most distant galaxies would have detectable levels of heavy elements such as oxygen – that such galaxies might have low, but non-zero metallicity.  Conversely, big bang supporters believe that the first stars were population III stars consisting only of hydrogen, helium, and lithium – and no heavy elements whatsoever.  Thus, the most distant galaxies should have only those elements.  What did the JWST find?

A research team led by physicist Jonathan Trump analyzed the spectra of certain high-redshift galaxies in the JWST data.  Trump states, “The Universe starts out with only hydrogen and helium and every other element on the periodic table is slowly produced by nuclear fusion in stars and distributed by supernovae over the 13.7 billion years from the Big Bang to the current time. Our new paper finds that infant galaxies are surprisingly enriched by oxygen and other non-primordial elements, suggesting highly efficient stellar fusion and explosions in the early Universe” [underline added].[40] 

An article from Nature reports, “One analysis of the first deep-field image examined the light emitted by galaxies at a redshift of 5 or greater. (Spectral lines that appear at various wavelengths of light correlate with the chemical elements composing the galaxies.) It found a surprising richness of elements such as oxygen” [underline added].[41]  The article continues, “Astronomers had thought that the process of chemical enrichment — in which stars fuse hydrogen and helium to form heavier elements — took a while, but the finding that it is under way in early galaxies ‘will make us rethink the speed at which star formation occurs’, [astronomer Allison] Kirkpatrick says.”[42]

An article in Quanta Magazine reports on the search for population III stars using the JWST.  “Now scientists are hoping the telescope will find an absence of heavy elements in even earlier galaxies — evidence that these galaxies contain only Population III stars, the hypothesized first stars in the universe, thought to have been monstrously huge and made entirely from hydrogen and helium….  The telescope took a closer look at one distant galaxy in the image, a smudge of light that dates to 700 million years after the Big Bang. With its spectrograph, JWST detected heavy elements, particularly oxygen, in the galaxy” [underline added].[43]

In the secular view, galaxies increase in heavy elements over time.  So, there should be a straightforward increase in heavy elements from higher redshift (z) galaxies to lower redshift galaxies.  Yet, several researchers found that this is not the case.  “The [redshift] z > 5 metallicities are broadly consistent with z ∼ 2 galaxies of similar stellar mass, although our interpretation is limited by highly uncertain stellar masses and upper limits in metallicity.”[44] 

Many high-redshift galaxies showed a similar range of metallicities to nearby galaxies (called “Green Peas”), in contradiction to the secular predictions.  “The JWST data show striking further similarities between these high redshift galaxies and nearby Green Peas. The z∼8 galaxies span the metallicity range covered by Green Peas.”[45]   Many technical preprints have also confirmed the detection of heavy elements like oxygen in the most distant galaxies that have been spectroscopically analyzed.[46],[47],[48],[49] 

So, the secular predictions regarding the steady decrease in metals with increasing redshift with the earliest stars being pop III were simply wrong.  The observations match the creationist prediction of heavy elements in high-redshift galaxies.  I have also made predictions that the JWST will detect exoplanets with orbital or chemical properties that are inconsistent with the secular model, but consistent with God’s creativity.  These would include planets that orbit their star at high inclination or in the opposite direction of the star’s rotation, or with strong magnetic fields, and so on.  Currently, the James Web Space Telescope has observed only two exoplanets.[50]  So this prediction may take several years before it is either confirmed or refuted.


It is always exciting to see creation predictions confirmed, and secular predictions refuted by data.  The ability to make correct, specific predictions is a key characteristic of a good scientific model.  So perhaps the current creationist understanding of cosmology is on the right track.  We have a tremendous advantage because we build our models on the infallible Word of God.  This doesn’t ensure that the details of our models are always correct since such details go beyond the text of Scripture and in many cases are educated guesses.  But it does allow us to eliminate many false leads – those that are contrary to Genesis.

I would like to make an additional prediction – not about the astronomy, but about the secularists’ reaction to all these exciting new discoveries.  The Bible not only gives accurate information about the universe, it also gives accurate information about people.  Apart from the regenerating power of the Holy Spirit, the Bible says that people love darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil (John 3:19-20).  The Bible teaches that all people know God, and that they are hardwired to recognize creation as His handiwork (Romans 1:19-20).  Yet they suppress the truth in unrighteousness (Romans 1:18).  People would rather believe a lie than accept the truth about creation. 

Therefore, I predict that the secular community (as a whole) will not be moved by these amazing results from the James Webb Space Telescope.  Despite all evidence to the contrary, they will continue to believe in a big bang, and that stars and galaxies spontaneously formed over millions of years.  They will simply push these stories to a much earlier time, so that they are beyond verification (or falsification) by our current technological limits.  They will not give up the big bang or evolution – no matter what evidence is found.  This confirms that the big bang is not really science at all, but a philosophical precommitment in light of which secularists interpret all data.[51]

And yet, the Lord can give a person a new heart that loves Him and the truth of His Word.  Perhaps the Lord will use some of these exciting new discoveries as part of the means by which He illuminates the mind of unbelievers as His Spirit regenerates their heart unto salvation.  In any case, we pray these new results are encouraging to believers.  We extend our thanks and a hearty congratulations to those at NASA, ESA, and CSA who made the James Webb Space Telescope possible.  We look forward to what the JWST will reveal in the future, including many wonderful new images and data that will continue to confirm biblical creation and glorify God.             

[1] The relationship between distance and redshift is approximate because galaxies can move through space producing a doppler effect.  The doppler effect cannot be separated from cosmological redshift (there is no way to observationally distinguish one from another).  Therefore, the formula relating distance to redshift works best for very distant galaxies where the expansion of the universe far exceeds any doppler shift.  But the formula is not very accurate for very nearby galaxies such as M31 because the doppler shift overwhelms the meager expansion of space over such a small cosmic distance.     

[2]  <<9/1/2022>>
The above link allows the user to specify the redshift (z), then press “general” and the resulting distance is computed.  Note that there are several definitions of distance in cosmology, such as luminosity distance and comoving distance.  These go beyond the scope of this article.  But they are all essentially the same for very low redshifts, and diverge for high redshifts.

[3] Most of the preliminary estimates of JWST deep field galaxy redshift are based on the Lyman-break method.  This method uses the fact that ground-state hydrogen atoms readily absorb light with wavelengths shorter than 912 Angstroms in the rest frame – the energy necessary to ionize the atom.  Thus, shorter wavelengths are not observed.  By measuring the relative brightness of a distant galaxy in several wavelength filters, the redshift can be computed by observing at which wavelength the galaxy “winks out.”  This is actually a very good method, but is less accurate and less precise than the more time-consuming method of direct spectroscopic measurements.

[4]  <<9/2/2022>>
Hancock, E., Early JWST Survey Sheds New Light on the First Galaxies, UConn Today, August 9, 2022.

[5]  <<9/2/2022>>
Witze, A., Four revelations from the Webb telescope about distant galaxies, Nature News, July 27, 2022.

[6]  <<9/1/2022>>
Bakx, T., et al., Deep ALMA redshift search of a z~12 GLASS-JWST galaxy candidate, Astro-ph/arXiv:2208.13642, August 29, 2022.

[7]  <<9/2/2022>>
Naidu, R., Two Remarkably Luminous Galaxy Candidates at z≈11−13 Revealed by JWST, Astro-ph/arXiv:2207.09434, July 19, 2022.

[8] Ibid.

[9] Ibid.

[10]  <<9/2/2022>>
Finkelstein, S., et al., A Long Time Ago in a Galaxy Far, Far Away: A Candidate z ~ 14 Galaxy in Early JWST CEERS Imaging, Astro-ph/arXiv:2207.12474, July 25, 2022.

[11] Ibid.

[12] <<9/1/2022>>
Yan, H., et al., First Batch of Candidate Galaxies at Redshifts 11 to 20 Revealed by the James Webb Space Telescope Early Release Observations, Astro-ph/arXiv:2207.11558, July 23, 2022.

[13]  <<9/1/2022>>
Mirocha, J., and Furlanetto, S., Balancing the efficiency and stochasticity of star formation
with dust extinction in z & 10 galaxies observed by JWST, Astro-ph/arXiv:2208.12826, August 30, 2022.

[14]  <<9/1/2022>>
Atek, H., et al., Revealing Galaxy Candidates out to z∼16 with JWST Observations of the Lensing Cluster SMACS0723, Astro-ph/arXiv:2207.12337, July 25, 2022.

[15] Ibid.

[16] <<9/1/2022>>
Achenbach, J., Webb telescope is already challenging what astronomers thought they knew, Washington Post, August 26, 2022.

[17] Ibid.

[18] Ibid.

[19] Ibid.

[20]  <9/2/2022>>
Gater, W., JWST finds galaxies may adopt Milky Way-like shape faster than thought, New Scientist, July 25, 2022.

[21] Ibid.

[22] Ibid.

[23]  <<9/2/2022>>
Witze, A., Four revelations from the Webb telescope about distant galaxies, Nature, July 27, 2022.

[24] Ibid.

[25] Ibid.

[26] Ibid.

[27] Ibid.

[28]  <<9/2/2022>>
O’Callaghan, J., Two Weeks In, the Webb Space Telescope Is Reshaping Astronomy, Quanta Magazine, July 25, 2022.

[29]  <<9/2/2022>>
Labbe, I., et al., A very early onset of massive galaxy formation, Astro-ph/arXiv:2207.12446, July 25, 2022.

[30]  <<9/2/2022>>
Kolchin, M.B., Stress testing ΛCDM with high-redshift galaxy candidates, Astro-ph/arXiv:2208.01611v1, August 2, 2022.

[31] Ibid.

[32] The lambda (Λ) represents dark energy (the possibility that empty space has a tiny amount of mass) and CDM standard for “cold dark matter.”  Cold dark matter is anything that has mass, moves at non-relativistic speeds, and cannot be detected by direct observations.  The standard big bang model assumes a flat universe (the total mass/energy matches the expansion energy) with Λ = 0.7, and matter (most of which is cold dark matter) = 0.3. 

[33] <<9/2/2022>>
Lovell, C., et al., Extreme Value Statistics of the Halo and Stellar Mass Distributions at
High Redshift: are JWST Results in Tension with ΛCDM?, Astro-ph/arXiv:2208.10479, August 23, 2022.

[34] This contradicts early Hubble evidence that irregular galaxies dominate at high redshift.  Apparently, Hubble had not imaged these galaxies in the right wavelengths to properly discern their morphology.

[35]  <<9/2/2022>>
Ferreira, L., Panic! At the Disks: First Rest-frame Optical Observations of Galaxy Structure at z>3 with JWST in the SMACS 0723 Field, Astro-ph/arXiv:2207:09428, August 31, 2022.

[36] The title of the paper in the previous reference is a play on words.  It is a not a concession by the authors that there is any reason to panic. 

[37] Ibid.

[38] Ibid.

[39] The Earth was made on day 1 of the creation week and had water from the beginning (Genesis 1:1-2).  The water molecule is two parts hydrogen to one part oxygen, and oxygen is a “heavy element” in terms of astronomy – one that cannot have been produced in a big bang.  The stars are made on day 4 of the creation week (Genesis 1:14-19).  Thus, stars were made after elements like oxygen already existed.  This is in contrast to the big bang model.

[40]  <<9/2/2022>>
Hancock, E., Early JWST Survey Sheds New Light on the First Galaxies, UConn Today, August 9, 2022.

[41]  <<9/2/2022>>
Witze, A., Four revelations from the Webb telescope about distant galaxies, Nature News, July 27, 2022.

[42] Ibid.

[43]  <<9/2/2022>>
O’Callaghan, J., Two Weeks In, the Webb Space Telescope Is Reshaping Astronomy, Quanta Magazine, July 25, 2022.

[44]  <<9/5/2022>>
Trump, J., et al., The Physical Conditions of Emission-Line Galaxies at Cosmic Dawn from JWST/NIRSpec Spectroscopy in the SMACS 0723 Early Release Observations, Astro-ph/arXiv:2207.12388, July 26, 2022.

[45]  <<9/5/2022>>
Rhoads, J., Finding Peas in the Early Universe with JWST, Astro-ph/arXiv:2207.13020, July 26, 2022.

[46]  <<9/5/2022>>
Taylor, A.J., et al., Metallicities of Five z > 5 Emission-Line Galaxies in SMACS 0723 Revealed by JWST, Astro-ph/arXiv:2208.06418, August 16, 2022.

[47]  <<9/5/2022>>
Tacchella, S., JWST NIRCam+NIRSpec: Interstellar medium and stellar populations of young galaxies with rising star formation and evolving gas reservoirs, Astro-ph/arXiv:2208.03281, August 5, 2022.

[48]  <<9/5/2022>>
Arellano-Cordova, K., et al., A First Look at the Abundance Pattern – O/H, C/O, Ne/O, and Fe/O – in z > 7 Galaxies with JWST/NIRSpec, Astro-ph/arXiv:2208.02562, August 5, 2022.

[49]  <<9/5/2022>>
Sun, F., First Peek with JWST/NIRCam Wide-Field Slitless Spectroscopy: Serendipitous Discovery of a Strong [O III]/Hα Emitter at z = 6.11, Astro-ph/arXiv:2207.11259, August 30, 2022.

[50] One planet (HIP 65426 b) was directly imaged.  The other (WASP-96 b) was analyzed spectroscopically. 

[51] My goal here is not to criticize secularists for having philosophical precommitments.  We all have these and we all use them as the lens through which we interpret data.  I would encourage secularists to think through the implications of their presuppositions, and consider whether they justify the very existence of scientific endeavors.