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Maxwell’s Being

Romans 8:20-21
For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope, because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.”

The second law [of thermodynamics] cannot be violated, never, in no situation, under no circumstances”, said one scientist. What is that second law? It states that in any energy change, although no energy has been destroyed, some energy has always been converted into a “useless” form, such as low-temperature heat. This useless energy is called entropy. We say that entropy increases. Entropy is, therefore, a measure of disorder. If you have two children, and each has a bedroom, the more untidy bedroom has more entropy – more disorder – than the tidy child’s room. To undo the entropy of the untidy child’s room requires a large input of energy – by someone expending work energy to tidy it!

James Clerk Maxwell assumed that he had found a theoretical way where the second law could be broken. He imagined two rooms, with a door joining them, both containing the same gas. The gas molecules are random, with slow and fast molecules. Maxwell imagined a being guarding the door. He quickly opens the door to allow fast molecules from one to the other – or slow molecules in the opposite direction. Therefore, the second law is violated. But his thought experiment was flawed. The doorkeeper creates more entropy (disorder) by opening and shutting the door than is reduced by the process. So the second law is not violated. In fact, the second law is biblical – creation is currently in “bondage to corruption” (Romans 8:21) but will one day be set free.

Prayer: We know that all the laws of science are in place because You are a God of order, Lord God and Heavenly King. Amen.

Author: Paul F. Taylor

Ref: Brooks, M. (2019), The universe tends towards disorder. But how come nobody knows why?, < https://www.newscientist.com/article/mg24432590-200-the-universe-tends-towards-disorder-but-how-come-nobody-knows-why/ >, accessed 11/30/2019. Image: Maxwell’s thought experiment, CC BY-SA 3.0 Unported.

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