RSR: Brought to You By the Number Three

* Made in God's Triune Image: After a couple science news items, Real Science Radio hosts Bob Enyart and Fred Williams talk about God who said, "Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness..." (Gen. 1:26). God exists as three persons in one Trinity. Man also, as it turns out, has a triune nature.

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* Three in the Bible: Consider the Bible's extraordinary use of this number. Christ was three days in the tomb, which Jonah’s three days foreshadowed, as did Abraham’s three days of thinking that he would sacrifice his son Isaac on that same hill called Golgotha, the Skull, and Mt. Moriah (Gen. 22:14; 2 Chron. 3:1). Israel's three patriarchs are Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The priestly tribe of Levi is from Jacob's third child (Gen. 29:34), as Leviticus is the third book of the Bible. And the day the law was given, the sons of Levi killed “about three thousand men” (Ex. 32:28), whereas the day the Spirit was given, “that day about three thousand souls" were saved (Acts 2:41; and see 2 Cor. 3:6 and The Plot).

The Hebrew Scriptures comprise three sections, the Law, the Prophets, and the Writings (Luke 24:44), and God created three archangels. The most noteworthy women are Eve, Sarah, and Mary. The magi brought gold, frankincense and myrrh. Three persons (one being the Son) started their public service at thirty years of age: Joseph (Gen. 41:46), a deliverer of his people; David (2 Sam. 5:4) seated on the messianic throne (2 Sam. 7:12-13); and "Jesus Himself began His ministry at about thirty years of age" (Luke 3:23). God could have led Esther to fast for two days, or four; and He could have kept Jonah in the whale for one day, or a week, but three days and three nights prefigures God’s plan of salvation for Christ’s time in the grave. For Jesus "rose again the third day according to the Scriptures" (1 Cor. 15:4). And thus, the triune Christian God, the mystery of the Trinity, Three Persons in One God, is the only true God. And even theoretically, unlike the unitarian Allah and any of the alleged pagan idols, the God of the Bible is the only one whose testimony we would be able to trust, for His triunity answers both the philosophical problem of the one and the many and it answers Socrates' challenge against theism titled Euthyphro's Dilemma. For, how could God Himself know that He is good, and not evil? Allah could not know that. But with the Triune God, the Son testifies that for eternity past, the Father has never wronged the Son, and the Father of the Spirit, and the Spirit of the Son, an eternal, threefold testimony, for by the testimony of three witnesses, the matter is established.

* Three in Nature: God has imprinted our world and even ourselves with His triune nature. The number three manifested in Scripture turns the Christian's attention outward to see that space itself exists in three dimensions, height, width, and length, as does time in past, present and future. The electromagnetic force operates in positive, negative, and neutral, and in light, red, green, and blue blend into the hues of the rainbow whereas in pigment the three primary colors are red, yellow, and blue. We human beings on this third planet from the Sun are made of atoms built of "just three basic particles", protons, neutrons, and electrons, which for millennia mankind knew only in three states, solid, liquid, and gas. When you look into those three particles that form the atom, you enter the triune world of quantum mechanics. Further, electrons are among the three "flavors" of leptons. Protons and neutrons are made of exactly three quarks of one of the three quark groupings, each of one of three "colors" and of multiples of one-third electrical charge. And exactly three generations of elementary particles underlie all matter. Physicist Richard Feynman in QED asked how many fundamental actions are there to account for nearly all phenomena in the universe regarding light and electricity to which he answered: "There are Three!" And in his Nobel prize lecture Feynman said, astoundingly, that there are three unique ways of "describing quantum mechanics". Unlike our arbitrary earth-based units of measurement, scientists so far have discovered "two natural units", Planck's constant, h, and the speed of light, c. A "still-unanswered question is whether a third natural unit awaits discovery", for such a triune "'all-natural' physics" would "form a basis of measurement as complete as, and much more satisfying than, the kilogram, the meter, and the second." And long before the advent of the theory of quantum mechanics, mankind's first known number system used the Sumerian term "man" for 1, "woman" for 2, and the word "plurality" for 3, with math itself happening in the realm of positive, negative, and zero. The strongest shape for building is the triangle. Writers often give three examples and artists group in threes as in interior design, sculpting, and even movie directors, as they have the word trilogy (1, 2, 3) but no word for any other number of films. Photographers use the rule of thirds. Genetic scientists discovered that the language of DNA uses only three-letter words. And so we humans are body, soul, and spirit (1 Thes. 5:23), made in the image of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.

Human beings live here, in heaven, and in hell. Those who love God cry, "Holy, holy, holy." For mankind is made in God's image and likeness, image referring to our form, and likeness to our essence as sentient, morally-responsible persons. Regardless of Charles Darwin's hope for evidence that apes eventually began standing erect, the thousands of kinds of animals made by God, along with all the four-footed beasts, have a stooped stance and look to the ground, whereas men and women stand upright with a heavenly gaze. For the first thing that God created was a form, that is, an image, for the eternal Son to indwell (Col. 1:15; Rev. 3:14: Heb. 1:3; 5:5; 10:5; 2 Cor. 4:4; John 1:14; Phil. 2:5-6; 1 Tim. 2:5; Rev. 1:13-18). And in that image "He made man," and not in the image of apes (see AmericanRTL.org/Darwin). But He made them "male and female" as Christ affirmed (Mark 10:6), "from the beginning of creation." Moses wrote in Hebrew and the Latin  translation is imago Dei: "So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them (Gen. 1:27). And because a fish is not made in God's image, one can eat another without guilt, and it is impossible to "murder" a tomato or a turkey, but murder can be committed only against a human being. For God prohibited the shedding of innocent blood, "for in the image of God He made man" (Gen. 9:6).

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* Bob Enyart to Speak on Creation in Denver: The Rocky Mountain Creation Fellowship group has invited Bob to speak Friday evening, October 11 at 7 p.m. The event is free and offers refreshments and the service of a creation library. Check out the details at DenverCreation.org and although it's not necessary, please RSVP to Bob@RealScienceRadio.com.

TELETHON FREE GIFT: RSR airs only by the financial support of our listeners! Make a one-time or monthly donation to keep Bob Enyart and Fred Williams on the air. To say thanks, we'll send you Ray Comfort's really fun and revealing DVD, Evolution vs. God.

Three Post-show Thoughts:
First, the claim above, of course, is not that only the number three describes reality. Rather, as known by architects, authors, and composers, a theme is most appreciated in the context of greater variety. If well designed, the greater the variety, the more appreciated the theme.  
Second, Kenneth Ford, retired director of the American Institute of Physics, wrote of the leptons, "No one knows why there are three flavors of particles." [Of course, statements like that imply near omniscience. While physicists have not published "how" it is that leptons come in three "flavors", readers of this page may know exactly why they do.] And Ford concludes, "Surprisingly, physicists feel confident that the third flavor marks the end of the trail-no more lie ahead."
And third, if you divide a triangle by a side, you get three sides and if you divide the Trinity by a person you get three persons. But if you divide anything by zero, the result is undefined for it is irrational to believe that anything can come from nothing. And it is especially irrational to believe that everything came from nothing. Bob Enyart informally debated theoretical physicist Lawrence Krauss, author of the admittedly mistitled book, A Universe from Nothing. For no matter how much one may not like it, nothing comes from nothing. So check out this 2-minute video of Richard Dawkins on his classic defense of Krauss and of the atheist creed that everything came from nothing: