This argument dovetails nicely with the Kalām argument that I mentioned earlier. My little brother (who is 14, by the way), mentioned it to me, and he got it from St. Thomas Aquinas, more or less. It’s based on the argument from contingency, and the easiest way to explain it is this: given enough chances, anything that happens just by chance will happen. Successfully guessing a random number between one and a billion is virtually impossible the first time, but if you live for a billion years, and every few minutes you try a new round of “Guess the number between one and a billion,” you’re bound to nail it. In fact, it would be virtually impossible not to – and that’s with the other party choosing a new number each time. It’s like the popular saying: a thousand monkeys at a thousand typewriters will eventually make Hamlet by sheer chance (insert obligatory Simpsons reference).
So here’s the argument:
- Given an infinite number of chances, anything that may happen as a result of chance will happen.
- The universe, as a system capable of producing environments capable of life, can be irreversibly destroyed. Whether this is through “heat death” or a million other ways, it’s possible for the universe to collapse or explode so completely that the conditions to self-correct are impossible. To use the monkey analogy, a thousand monkeys in a room with the big red button will eventually push it.
- Therefore, the universe cannot be an infinite number of years old.
The reasons’ simple. Since this could happen, over an infinite number of years, with an infinite number of chances, it would have. #2 is as true for one universe as for a billion universes, so the multiverse theories. All of this serves to show that the universe has a starting date. And that ties into the earlier argument that anything with a start date has a creator/Creator.
One argument I foresee against this is the argument that since God is infinite, this applies to Him as well. But God isn’t a series of random chances, nor is He governed by chance, so it doesn’t apply. Or to put it another way: if you’re firing a gun wildly in the air, with a 1% chance of hitting someone, you’ll eventually hit them. But even given an infinite series of chances, someone dead-set on not shooting someone won’t. That’s because the first is governed by chance, and the latter by will. So the only Infinite must have a will.