A February 4th debate between Ken Ham and Bill Nye puts the origins of the universe in the spotlight, once again.
On February 4 th a debate, sponsored by the Creation Museum located in Kentucky will be conducted by Ken Ham, a biologist and founder of the museum, and Bill Nye, a mechanical engineer, scientist and well-known public figure. The event has created a lot of media noise and debate, even before the official debate has begun.
Some supporters of evolution postulate that the debate will legitimize creationism by giving it equal standing with the theory of evolution. Others feel that Nye has a limited educational background from which to argue for the theory of evolution. Likewise, some feel that, whatever the outcome, it will do little to dissuade anyone from their previously held beliefs, creationist or evolutionist (Michael Gryboski, “ ‘Evolution Weekend’ Organizer Says Ken Ham-Bill Nye Debate Has ‘No Intellectual Purpose,’” The Christian Post at ChristianPost.com, January 31, 2014).
Despite the naysayers there appears to be significant interest in the event, with many tickets selling out quickly and livestreaming to be available during the debate.
The surrounding media interest is reminiscent of the Scopes Trial which took place in Dayton, Tennessee in 1925. It was a publicity stunt that drew significant attention to the possibility of human evolution being taught in public schools. Interestingly both sides were religious, and it was really a debate over how religion would deal with the theory of evolution.
In the case of the Ham-Nye debate, the sponsor, The Creation Museum, stands for a “young earth” form of creationism, in which the universe and earth were all created within the past 7,000 or so years. Most notable is their belief that dinosaurs and humans co-existed. Conversely, there are also “old earth” creationists who believe in a more reasonable, longer time-frame for the existence of the universe and the earth, with humankind coming in the past 7,000 or so years.
For a more in-depth look at this subject, please read, Creation or Evolution – Does It Really Matter What You Believe?
However the debate concludes, it should be a reminder to us to establish our understanding of God’s way and of what we believe because if we don’t, there will always be someone ready to fill the void in our minds with a false philosophy.