Thoughts About the Nye/Ham Debate

Bunches of people have put out their thoughts about the debate already, so I thought about not writing. But Ken Ham himself has put up a great article today and there are a couple of points no one else seems to have mentioned, so here goes.

Ken Ham reminds me a lot of my dad, white beard and all. Because of this, I could tell he was really nervous during the debate. It’s not too often we know the things we say over the next hour are likely to end up in the history books. From the beginning of discussions about having the debate, Ham knew his words adding up to less than 60 minutes could affect the eternal destiny of untold numbers of people. But, he knew this was his task, much like Esther was given.

If you follow CS4K anywhere on social media, you’ve already seen the photo Buddy Davis posted from just before the debate. It was awesome to see Christians banding together around Ham; especially because we all know this is just a guy, willing to be a spokesman for Jesus in a position few of us will ever experience.

As many of us have known from the beginning, the debate couldn’t help but be frustrating. Decades ago, Dr. Duane Gish, an amazing creation scientist, did a bunch of debates with evolutionists. He had a habit of using his time to throw out so many problem areas for evolution, there was no way to respond to them all. It became known as the Gish Gallop. Eventually, most evolutionists decided it was always a bad idea to debate a creationist because they ended up fumbling around trying to deny accusations.

Of course, the same technique works both ways. And we saw it again on Tuesday night.

I would imagine a lot of you listening to Bill Nye were thinking, “that’s an assumption”, “but the truth points to a Creator there!” and such. It wasn’t fun knowing there was no way to deal with every detail in a convincing manner. In fact, as Grace With Salt points out, Ham was able to respond to, or even point out in advance, about half of Nye’s best arguments.

I’m going to send you on to Ham’s nice and chatty blog post from today. Most of what he explains I’d guessed had been part of his strategy. It is exciting to see things are already happening as a result and God is clearly working.

It was especially great reading how Ham relied on the vast amount of creationist material available online for people to search out themselves. Even a little site like mine saw this working out. Within a few months of starting my blog, I’d researched Ice Cores. Of course, just starting out, I’d had maybe a dozen people ever read those articles. That’s changed!

In fact, as soon as I saw people were finding the first post, I had to edit it since I’d forgotten to link up the rest of the series to it.

The point is, people are researching the scientific evidence for themselves. Ham was wise to focus on the worldview issues we have to be aware of first. He focused especially on the consequences for Christians who compromise with the world against the Bible. If even a fraction of people who didn’t care before think things through and decide to trust God in every area, God will have many more effective workers in His kingdom!

Oh, yes, I wanted Ham so badly to mention that Forensic Science is a subcategory of Historical Science. It would have been perfect to point again to The Eye Witness.  Plus, as every good mystery reader knows, just because it looks like the butler did it, doesn’t make it so!

And for the sake of those of us who know Jesus, it would have been nice if Ham had mentioned a sentence or two about how he’s experienced God in response to one of the questions. I know there are concerns about relying on experience, but you know a man like Ham has tasted that the Lord is good.

But, if I’d been in his shoes, I would have been a twitching heap on the floor from the beginning, so I’m very grateful God gave this opportunity to Ken Ham instead. 🙂

His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord. Matthew 25:21

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5 thoughts on “Thoughts About the Nye/Ham Debate

  1. creationclues

    I was disappointed that Ken Ham didn’t answer more of Bill Nye’s rather easily rebutted scientific arguments (like finding fossils out of place, creationists making scientific models and predictions, etc.). Personally, I very strongly thought he should have brought up the incredible amounts of helium that the RATE team found in granite because that addresses both predictions and the radioisotope dating that Bill Nye held so dearly. However, just like you said, I probably wouldn’t have the nerve to take on such a huge responsibility. Over all, Mr. Ham did an incredible job at being organized and keeping the debate friendly and intellectual.

    Reply
    1. Cheri Fields Post author

      It was tough. Did you catch the post debate talk with Dr. Purdom? Ham chose not to respond to more than he did on purpose. It’s a well known apologetics choice between the evidence based approach and the presuppositional one.
      If I’m speaking to someone who *wants* to trust God but wonders how this is reasonable, the facts are wonderful.
      If someone is already closed against God and trying to get us to “prove” He exists, pointing out this attitude is the way I go as well. When someone tries to push me to cough up evidence disproving evolution before they’ll listen, I do the same thing Ham did. Plus, I’ll mention how God designed the world to preserve our ability to choose. Science will never prove the Creator to those who don’t want it to, no matter how overwhelming the evidence. Isaiah 45:15

      Reply
  2. Pastor Todd

    “He focused especially on the consequences for Christians who compromise with the world against the Bible.” That was my thought after I watched it too. I’m not sure if I totally agree with it but he had a plan. Either way I support Ken Ham and the work he is doing.

    Reply
    1. Cheri Fields Post author

      I suppose it’s an inevitable thing that each of us would have handled things a bit (or a lot) differently than Ham chose to. Considering that he is a prophet/discerner type, I thought he kept things gentle amazingly well.
      It *was* off the main theme of the debate to hammer at theistic evolution, but how many other times would people who believe God guided evolution give him a hearing?
      One of my favorite things about the creation movement is how well we understand the importance of having a united front. Of course we don’t agree on everything and have pet theories and methods, but we’re serving in the same unit in the same battle, for the same Commander!

      Reply
  3. Lou Ann Keiser

    Thank you. I liked hearing your viewpoint and especially the verse you used at the end. I believe that the gospel and the arguments for a Creator will not return void. Praise the Lord for men like Ken Ham, who have stood up to present God to others.

    Reply

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