Long before the famous scientist Stephen Hawking gazed out into space and decided to be a physicist, we Christians knew. In fact, long before Einstein or Hubble or any of the giants of modern science even for a minute considered that the universe around us is expanding, people who studied the Bible knew. That’s right; the theory of the expanding universe is mentioned in the Bible, in texts that were written over 2,000 years ago.
Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity hinted at the expansion. But it wasn't until the astronomer Edwin Hubble took the light of distant galaxies and ran it through a spectrograph that he realized that the light rays were being stretched out. This stretching shifts the light towards the red end of the spectrum. Measuring this shift told him that the galaxies were moving away from us; in fact they were moving faster than the speed of light. The only explanation for this was an expanding universe. The laws of physics still work because light moves at a consistent rate, but light must travel more distance. The changing sound of a receding train is a good example of this principle.
Psalm 104:2 says; He (God) wraps Himself in light as with a garment, He stretches out the heavens like a tent.
There are ten other Old Testament passages like this one. In Biblical times tents were made from cotton or animal hides. Both can be stretched. God is seen by the writers as creating the heavens by expanding them to make room for God’s purposes. God stretches the fabric of heaven just enough to fill it with all of His creations.
And it’s a good thing that God’s universe is expanding. The early universe was so full of high energy materials, what we call radiation, that life as we know it could not have survived the constant radioactive bombardment. But as the heavens stretched out, the radiation stretched out with it decreasing the amount of high energy material that strikes us. God stretched out the tent of the sky just enough to make a safe place for us to live.
Thus the concept, though not the theory, has been sitting in the Biblical texts waiting for twentieth century people to apply them to science.
God bless you,