After watching last night’s debate, it’s clear that if you view origins from a creation science worldview, you feel that Ken Ham clearly won the debate; if you view origins from a molecules-to-man science worldview, you feel that Bill Nye clearly won the debate.
So, who won? Nye? Ham?
That’s the beauty of debates – they aren’t designed to have winners. Debates aren’t boxing matches in which there are decisions made by judges and champions are awarded world champion belts as trophies.
Debates are designed to begin more debates among those who watched. They’re ice breakers, conversation starters.
With that being said, I feel Ken Ham accomplished exactly what he needed to accomplish last night. But before we get there, some disclosure about my pre-debate biases:
I am a huge fan of Ken Ham and the team at Answers in Genesis (AiG). I have followed them for a while and am very impressed with their scientists and scholarly work, their museum (which I hope to visit in September), and the quality of material they produce.
I also love Bill Nye. He’s part of my childhood in a big way. It was Nye that gave me a passion for science and understanding my world through discovery. Strangely, if it weren’t for Nye’s influence on me as a young boy, I would have never embraced science the way I have and would not have researched this topic as thoroughly as I have and would not have embraced the worldview of creation science as firmly as I have. In short, thanks Bill Nye for leading me to embracing science from a Christian perspective. You changed my life.
With that said, why do I think that Ken Ham did such a great job last night?
First, we must look at the actual question that was debated: “Is creation a viable model of origins in today’s modern, scientific era?” This was the topic of debate – not specifically creationism versus naturalistic evolution.
If the question of debate was the topic being debated (which it was), then Ken Ham most definitely made the most compelling case that it is viable.
In case you need a definition of viable, here it is:
viable (adjective) – capable of working successfully
Ken Ham argued successfully that a scientist can do good work and achieve technological advancements as someone who rejects the molecules-to-man model of origins.
Here’s how he did it:
- He provided several examples of modern scientists who are well-known in their field who work from the worldview of creationism. Here’s a list of modern scientists and modern science professionals who boldly identify themselves as creationists even though it could cost them a lot.
- He provided examples of technologies that were invented by those working from a creation worldview like those of Raymond Damadian (the pioneer of the MRI) and Stuart Burgess (biomedical and engineering expert).
- He proved that the drive to discover and invent is as vibrant for those that hold a creation worldview as those who do not – for creationists, we want to discover the mysteries of the universe because we want to know how God did it – and it’s by these discoveries that we find helpful truths that drive us to invent and push technology forward.
Nye never discredited these three points, which spoke to the crux of the debate’s topic – science can be done and technology can be advanced by creationists.
I urge you to study both sides of this debate. I have done this extensively and will continue doing so. Don’t simply hold a dogmatic view, be someone who truly has an open mind and explore it for yourself. The AiG website is a great place to start.
Don’t take my word for it, here’s what one famous scientist said about it:
“A fair result can be obtained only by fully stating and balancing the facts and arguments on both sides of each question…” -Charles Darwin [Introduction to On the Origin of Species]