With more than 3 million others, I watched the February 4th debate between Ken Ham of “Answers in Genesis” and Bill Nye “the Science Guy” online. The topic of debate: Is creation a viable model of origins in today’s modern, scientific era?
Like me, Ham subscribes to the “Young Earth” position, believing the book of Genesis gives an accurate, intentional, historical account of the origins of the universe and of humankind. Also like Ham, I believe that personal faith in Jesus Christ, not in the creation account, is what is necessary for salvation. With that stated, the inconsistencies and conundrums that disbelieving the book of Genesis presents to people who claim to believe the gospel are manifold.
Unlike me, Nye is a naturalist and evolutionist. Moreover, he is an antagonist toward creationism. According a CNN reporter, just before the debate Nye said, “I will remind Kentucky voters that this is a serious issue and that it is inappropriate to include creationism as an alternative to … the body of knowledge and the process called science.” Nye also stated, “I’m here for the U.S. economy. See, what keeps the United States in the game for the world economy is our ability to innovate, to have new ideas, and those inventions come from science.”
Remarkably, Nye believes that creationism and, therefore, biblical Christianity, is a threat to the US economy. He has even gone on record stating that parents should not teach their children creationism.
Nye’s message isn’t simply, “You Christians take your Bibles and go home.” Rather, his message is, “And keep those Bibles out of reach of your children.” Apparently we need warning labels and protective covers on the Sacred Book.
If biblical Christianity is the great enemy of scientific progress Nye believes it to be, how has the discipline of science progressed on the backs of so many Bible-believing Christians? To quote Ham, “The Bible and science go hand-in-hand.”
Dealing with questions about how matter and energy became life, the origin of consciousness, or what existed before the theorized Big Bang, Nye could only say, “It remains a mystery.” Ken Ham kept referencing the Book that sheds light on those mysteries.
While neither debater changed his opponent’s position, the debate itself shed light upon the essence of disagreement. In the words of Al Mohler, “The reality and authority of divine revelation…was what the debate was all about.” Mohler also observed, “The central issue was really not the age of the earth or the claims of modern science. It was about the central worldview clash of our times, and of any time: the clash between the worldview of the self-declared ‘reasonable man’ and the worldview of the sinner saved by grace.”