Ken Ham: 5-Minute Rebuttal
- You can't observe the age of the Earth.
- We begin with the history in the Bible. (This is revelation--God speaking through the Bible. The other starting point is made-up stuff. No third starting point has come forward.)
- Radioactive decay dating doesn't work when it can be verified. It is claimed to work when it can't be verified or validated. Wood, dated at thousands of years old has been found encased in lava basalt dated at millions of years old. The molten lava encased the wood, so they should date the same, but they are way off. (Scientists Distrust Dating Methods)
- A lava dome from Mt. St. Helens was dated millions of years and the various dating methods conflicted with each other.
- There are many assumptions in radioactive dating. The initial conditions, a closed system--there is a lot of evidence this is a false assumption, a constant decay rate, and many other assumptions.
- There is no dating method that isn't based on assumptions. (If you change the assumptions, you can change the date to just about anything you like.)
- Some Christians believe in millions of years, but their worldview is inconsistent with the Bible and the Gospel. It puts death before sin and there are other things that contradict the Bible.
- Most of the hundreds of dating methods contradict billions of years.
- We know that the Earth is about 6,000 years old because God reveals that to us through Scripture.
- There is nothing in observable science that contradicts 6,000 years.
Bill Nye: 5-Minute Rebuttal
"If you find 45 million year old rock on top of 45 thousand year old trees, maybe the rock slid on top. Maybe that's it. That seems a much more reasonable explanation than it's impossible. As far as dating goes, actually, the methods are very reliable."
- "If you find 45 million year old rock on top of 45 thousand year old trees, maybe the rock slid on top." Bill Nye is using the straw man argument as a rescuing mechanism. The wood was embedded in lava rock. It could not have slid on top. That is a bizarre hypothesis disguised in a straw man argumen.
- "That seems a much more reasonable explanation than it's impossible." Bill Nye is using the logical fallacy of bare assertion. If someone states that one conclusion is "more reasonable" than another, don't be so easily taken in by that. The person has not said anything. They have only made an unsupported claim that one conclusion is more reasonable than another without any evidence. Even though there is no evidence for the claim, this phrase still sounds convincing, doesn't it? Rather than being deceived, ask what makes it more reasonable. In this case, Bill Nye's straw man was not only unreasonable, it was irrational--as straw man arguments are. It is interesting that Ken Ham never asserted that it was impossible for thousands-of-years-old wood to be engulfed by millions-of-years-old lava. Bill Nye figured that out on his own.
- “As far as dating goes, actually, the methods are very reliable.” Bill Nye is using the logical fallacy of proof by repetition of an unsupported assertion, having been just confronted with several examples (and there are many more) of how the dating methods are unreliable. He didn't even try to answer those but just ignored them and repeated his unsupported assertion.
"One of the mysteries, or interesting things that people in my business, especially at the planetary society, are interested in is why all the asteroids seem to be so close to the same date, at an age, 4.5, 4.6 billions of years. At first people expected a little bit more of a spread.” It's hard to determine what point is being made here. Probably that the asteroids test out at billions of years old using Uniformitarian assumptions. It is possible that Bill is trying to say that the Earth is the same age as the dating methods (which are based on assumptions) come up with for the asteroids. We do know that each time an asteroid comes close to the Sun it loses material, so they could not be as old as these dating methods claim.
". . . people in my business, especially at the planetary society . . ." Is Bill Nye trying to assert that he is an expert and should be listened to because of his status? That would be the logical fallacy of appeal to authority. Other than that, his remark proves nothing related to the claim of reliability of the dating methods. The rest of this statement and why Bill Nye chose to make it is a mystery in itself.
“So I understand that you take the Bible as written in English, translated countless--well maybe not countless, but translated many, many times over the last three millennia, as to be a more accurate, more reasonable assessment of the natural laws we see around us than what I and everybody in here can observe. That, to me, is unsettling, troubling.”
- “. . . written in English” Bill Nye is using innuendo in an attempt to discredit the Bible by implying that the English translation is a problem of some sort. This is an attempt to make the Bible seem as though it has gone through random change due to errors and the telephone game idea. This is done using several untrue premises. However, we have the Bible in the original language, and technology has allowed us to key every word of the English (or pick your language) translation to the original language from which it was translated. Furthermore, there are, and have been for thousands of years, scholars who fully understand the original languages. Here is an interesting video on this.
- “translated many many times” This implies that one translation was translated into another translation and that translation was translated into another translation, resulting in a loss of information with each successive translation. This is a false premise, an outright lie. Translations are created from the original text. As with English words, Hebrew, Greek, and Chaldea words can often have more than one meaning, and sentences can often be taken more than one way. Some translations are more accurate than others, but we have the original text and technology that allows anyone to check it out. The only way that anyone can understand what is written in the Bible is to ask God to reveal it to them.
- “the last three millennia” Bill probably made this error because of his ignorance rather than maliciousness. It is kind of like presidential candidates who go to all 56 states of the United States. It may, however, have been a poor attempt at ridicule or an attempt to confuse some people. It was not a slip of the tongue, because Bill Nye repeated this idea several times. Millenia means a period of 1,000 years. Bill made this statement in 2014 A.D. Christ was born about 4 B.C. Three millennia would make this 3014 instead of 2014. The Old Testament was written, mainly in Hebrew, by a number of authors over a period of several thousand years before Christ was born. The New Testament was written, mainly in Greek, by a number of authors beginning shortly after Christ ascended and the Holy Spirit fell on them at Pentecost and continuing until about 80 A.D. when the Revelation of Jesus Christ was written down by John. But Bill is speaking of translations into English. There was no English language 3,000 years ago or even 2,000 years ago. The first hand-written English translation of some parts of the Bible were created around 1380 A.D. by John Wycliffe. He translated from Latin Vulgate rather than the Textus Receptus, since that was all that was available to him. The Pope was so infuriated by his teachings and his translation of the Bible into English that, 44 years after Wycliffe had died, he ordered the bones to be dug-up, crushed, and scattered in the river. Wycliffe's translation is not in general use today. So, there were no translations into English until several hundred years ago, and they are not translations of translations.
- “to be a more accurate, more reasonable assessment of the natural laws we see around us than what I and everybody in here can observe.” Bill Nye repeated this fallacy continually throughout the debate in order to drive his point home. This constitutes the fallacy of proof by repeated assertion. He kept repeating the accusation that those who follow Christ either deny the laws of nature or else say that the laws of nature changed after the Flood. Bill Nye’s assertion is false and was clearly answered, and yet Bill kept making the accusation in the same way a nasty political campaign ad repeats the same lie over and over. It is actually a straw man fallacy. It is a known false claim, an outright lie, since no one can observe big-bang-billions-of-years-molecules-to-man. Both Bill Nye and the millions of Christ-followers throughout the world are observing the same things. Bill Nye is interpreting these observations using arbitrary assumptions (which he will defend as being based on experience, but these assumptions are actually pulled from Bill's worldview, his inner fake-reality), and made-up stories (which he calls “science.”) The millions of Christians are learning to hear God’s Voice as God speaks to them through Scripture and through the inner experience they have with the living Christ, and they are receiving revelation from God concerning what they are observing. Anyone can verify this since everyone who seeks Christ (in sincerity, respect, and a will to do His will) finds Christ. That is the difference. Assumptions and stories versus Divine revelation. The difference is not the straw man that Bill Nye has constructed.
- “That, to me, is unsettling, troubling.” This is the logical fallacy of appeal to emotion. Bill Nye may be troubled about many things, but his troubled mind has no impact on reality. He must be reasonable and bring true premises, sound reasoning, and true conclusions. His troubled mind means nothing.
"And then, about the disease thing, are the fish sinners? Have they done something wrong to get diseases? That’s sort of an extraordinary claim that takes me just a little past what I’m comfortable with."
- "about the disease thing, are the fish sinners?" This is an appeal to contempt rather than really dealing with the issue. If Bill Nye is trying to prove that disease is not the result of sin, he needs to bring some evidence, not simply speak disrespectfully about the concept. We know, by revelation, that it is sin that brought death. Our proof is the Divine revelation that God gives. This is checkable. Anyone who comes to Christ in willing submission, respect, and sincerity will find Him. Christ will inform him or her that the Bible is His Word without error. Anyone can check this out. And God will demonstrate that every argument against the Bible is based on some combination of made-up stories, arbitrary assumptions, outright lies, or irrationality. All followers of Christ have experienced His leading personally. Every person to comes to Christ in sincerity does find Him. There is no way to verify Bill Nye's assumptions or made-up stories. If Bill could do that, he would not have to resort to made-up stories and assumptions. He would not have to resort to flimflam. So, Divine revelation can be verified but arbitrary assumptions and made-up stories cannot be verified.
- ". . . are the fish sinners? Have they done something wrong to get diseases?" Bill Nye is displaying his ignorance. He asked the ad ignorantiam question thinking it was unanswerable, but it is easily answerable. There is a spiritual principle: Whoever you yield yourself as servant to obey, that's whose servant you are. Adam was set with authority over all of Creation. When Adam and Eve obeyed Satan instead of obeying God, Satan became his master. This affected everything. We have no idea what the Creation was like previous to the Fall except that it was very good. We do know that the Fall, this obedience to Satan and the slavery to Satan that followed, had a profound effect on the whole of Creation. Because Adam was set over all of Creation, when Adam became slave of Satan, all of Adam's dominion also fell. This is no different than what happens when one country is taken over by another country, except this takeover affected everything. And, not only were fish affected and put under the unkind despotism of Satan, but all of Adam's and Eve's descendants were also slaves of Satan. This doesn't mean that God has stepped out of the picture. God is still sovereign Lord over the Universe, and we know, by revelation, that Satan can only go as far as God allows for God's good ultimate purpose. And, when those descendants of Adam, including all who are alive today, fail to acknowledge their God and decide to stay as slaves of Satan, they receive justice from God Who is fair and just. And, right from the Fall, God gave humanity a way out. All of the Old Testament shows how the ones who decided to acknowledge God were looking forward to Christ. They came to know God in an intimate way just as we are also able to do. And furthermore, God has a plan. "For all Creation, gazing eagerly as if with outstretched neck, is waiting and longing to see the manifestation of the sons of God. For the Creation fell into subjection to failure and unreality (not of its own choice, but by the will of Him who so subjected it) Yet there was always the hope that at last the Creation itself would also be set free from the thraldom of decay so as to enjoy the liberty that will attend the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole of Creation is groaning together in the pains of childbirth until this hour. And more than that, we ourselves, though we possess the Spirit as a foretaste and pledge of the glorious future, yet we ourselves inwardly sigh, as we wait and long for open recognition as sons through the deliverance of our bodies." Romans 8:19-23, Weymouth
- "That’s sort of an extraordinary claim . . ." This is certainly a fallacy of unsupported assertion, where Bill asserts that the claim is extraordinary, a claim that Bill Nye rejects without taking even a moment to examine. A reasonable man would have found out something about this to see whether he could have proved that God did not say, "Let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the Earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the Earth." A reasonable man would have found out that anything that he said against the historical accounts in Scripture would just be based on assumptions or lies. For these reasons, a reasonable many would not have made this statement.
- ". . . takes me just a little past what I’m comfortable with." Bill Nye uses a logical fallacy of appeal to emotion here. How comfortable Bill Nye is has no effect on reality whatsoever. This is an irrational argument.
"As far as, ‘You can’t observe the past, I have to stop you right there.” That’s what we do in astronomy. All we can do in astronomy is look at the past. By the way, you’re looking at the past right now, because the speed of light bounces off of me and then gets to your eyes. And I’m delighted to see that the people in the back of the room appear just that much younger than the people in the front. So, this idea that you can separate the natural laws of the past from the natural laws that we have now, I think, is at the heart of our disagreement. I don’t see how we’re every going to agree with that if you insist that natural laws have changed. It’s, for lack of a better word, it’s magical. I have appreciated magic since I was a kid, but it’s not really what we want in conventional, mainstream science." Bill's rationalism here is so bazaar that it's difficult to comment on. We would prefer to be kind to the man, and we will attempt to be as gentle as possible. The most bazaar part is the faulty comparison/red herring fallacy. To assert that the fact that light takes some time to travel is not the same going back into time for a very simple reason. (If this is confusing to you, it is because Bill's statement is on the verge of insanity. Most people would react by just saying that they can't believe anyone would say that.) On the Earth, we see star light that took a certain length of time to get to Earth. You cannot go back in time and see the light that hit your eyes last night. You can only view the light that is hitting the Earth in the present. So, in no way are we looking into the past when light hits our eyes.
- "As far as, ‘You can’t observe the past, I have to stop you right there. That’s what we do in astronomy. By the way, you’re looking at the past right now, because the speed of light bounces off of me and then gets to your eyes." Bill Nye is using the logical fallacy of equivocation, using a different meaning for the phrase, "observe the past" than could ever be taken from what Ken Ham said about the problems of observing the past. Bill Nye is also using the logical fallacy of appeal to extremes, taking an extreme position that was never intended by Ken Ham. This is a form of straw man fallacy. So, Bill Nye sets up his straw man, falsely claiming taht Ken Ham says (Ken didn't say it, though.) that we don't have to account for the time that it takes light to get to us. Then, having constructed his straw man, Bill Nye can easily knock it down. The fact is that when we look at stars we are not engaging in time travel. We are seeing them as soon as the light hits our eyes. We are not seeing the same light from those stars that hit Adam's eyes 6,000 years ago. We can only see the light that is hitting our eyes in the present. We could make up stories about the light that hit Adam's eyes, and those stories might be true or they might be false. Any assumptions are arbitrary. If you allow yourself just one assumption, you can prove anything to yourself. Anything! Assumptions and stories add to or take from what God is saying through the Bible and through Creation.
- Giving some detail to this issue of assumptions, let's look at a quote from the Berkley website: "Much as we might like to avoid it, all scientific tests involve making assumptions — many of them justified. For example, imagine a very simple test of the hypothesis that substance A stops bacterial growth. Some Petri dishes are spread with a mixture of substance A and bacterial growth medium, and others are spread with a mixture of inert substance B and bacterial growth medium. Bacteria are spread on all the Petri dishes, and one day later, the plates are examined to see which fostered the growth of bacterial colonies and which did not. This test is straightforward, but still relies on many assumptions: we assume that the bacteria can grow on the growth medium, we assume that substance B does not affect bacterial growth, we assume that one day is long enough for colonies to grow, and we assume that the color pen we use to mark the outside of the dishes is not influencing bacterial growth."
- Let's examine these so-called assumptions.
- "we assume that the bacteria can grow on the growth medium" Would they not have tested this to make sure it was true so they would not have to assume it? Of course, this is the case.
- "we assume that substance B does not affect bacterial growth" So, do they just grab some random substance B, not knowing what it is so that they have to assume? Of course not. They use a substance that has been tested repeatedly using scientific method so that they can be sure that it doesn't affect bacterial growth.
- "we assume that one day is long enough for colonies to grow" They actually might have to make an assumption like this if this is the first pass at this experiment and they know nothing about the bacteria. More likely, they set the time to a period that they know is long enough because they have already shown this to be long enough before they start adding other variables. To introduce too many unknowns at once is sloppy science.
- "we assume that the color pen we use to mark the outside of the dishes is not influencing bacterial growth" This would not be an assumption. What kind of lab would through an untested pen into the mix so they wouldn't know if the experiment is bringing meaningful results or not?
- Note that every one of these so-called assumptions is testable. None of these things requires assumption.
- So, this definition of assumption is confusing. What is even more confusing is calling these testable facts "assumptions" while calling untestable, often impossible, proclamations to also be "assumptions." This is the logical fallacy of equivocation.
- Here are some real arbitrary assumptions: "Natural processes are sufficient for understanding the natural world." "Nature operates uniformly throughout the universe in space and time." "It’s impossible to know if we have considered all possible alternative explanations." "Scientific knowledge is the most reliable knowledge we can have about the natural world and how it works." "There was no Genesis Flood." "There is no God. God cannot be known. God cannot reveal anything." "Science is the only way to know anything." "There is no spiritual realm." "God cannot have any affect on any scientific inquiry." "We can make valid assumptions without any proof or any way to test those assumptions." "All processes continue at the same rate from the beginning unless this assumption causes problems for the big-bang-billions-of-years-molecules-to-man story, in which case, other assumptions must be made to make the observation fall in line with the story."
- Here are some revelations that conflict with some of those assumptions: "God is the cause of all of what we call natural processes, and He is faithful but unrestricted." "In the beginning, God created the Heavens and the Earth--in six days, He created them." "The world as we know it will be destroyed and replaced with a new Heaven and New Earth." "God judges sin because He is just." "There is a spiritual realm." "It is possible to know God." "Everyone who keeps seeking to know Christ in sincerity, humility, submission, and respect will find Christ." "Everyone who follows Christ is led by Christ." "God works with us in unfolding revelation from glory to greater glory." "God has an order for everything that He has created; when we violate that order, we work against the purposes of God." "The big-bang-billions-of-years-molecules-to-man story is a lie."
- "And I’m delighted to see that the people in the back of the room appear just that much younger than the people in the front." Bill Nye is using the logical fallacy of appeal to ridicule. This plays well to those who want to believe in Atheism, but it doesn't answer the question about historical science in a reasonable way. Bill is actually making a irrelevant point, which is a red herring fallacy.
- "So, this idea that you can separate the natural laws of the past from the natural laws that we have now, I think, is at the heart of our disagreement. I don’t see how we’re every going to agree with that if you insist that natural laws have changed. It’s, for lack of a better word, it’s magical. I have appreciated magic since I was a kid, but it’s not really what we want in conventional, mainstream science." Bill Nye is re-framing the argument (framing fallacy) to a straw man that he used earlier and that Ken Ham answered. By repeating what Bill Nye knows to be a straw man fallacy, Bill is using the logical fallacy of proof by repetition. Ken Ham never talked about separating the natural laws of the past from the natural laws of the present. Bill Nye doesn't want anyone to understand the heart of the disagreement. The heart of the disagreement is this: is arbitrary assumption more valid than Divine revelation? That is the question. When talking about the past, both use the same science, the same observations, the same recording, and the same instrumentation. And all of these must be performed in the same present. However, Bill Nye interprets the evidence by arbitrary assumptions like Uniformitarianism (no-Floodism), Naturalism (Atheism), and Materialism (Atheism). Ken Ham interprets the evidence by Divine revelation that He receives from God primarily as God speaks to him through the Bible.
- ". . . for lack of a better word, it’s magical." Bill Nye is using the logical fallacy of special pleading in that he is saying that nothing created everything from nothing magically, but this is not magical, though it would require a change in natural laws. However, the natural laws would be part of what God created, and the worldwide Flood would in no way require a change in natural laws. Looking at this from the real question at hand: is arbitrary assumption a better basis for thought than Divine revelation, this is the old, old argument of rationalism. Rationalism is a philosophy that states that the human mind is capable of generating information without the benefit of either revelation or observation. That is what arbitrary assumption is. Of course, a true proponent of rationalism regards such assumptions, not as arbitrary, but as a sort of revelation from the god of self. So this is the logical fallacy of special pleading, since Bill Nye is saying that Divine revelation from the Almighty Creator God is magical, but revelation from the god of self is not magical. The real question: "Which one is the real god, the god of self or the Almighty Creator God?" Can you see the framing fallacy in what Bill is saying?
- "what we want in conventional, mainstream science." Circular reasoning, implying as a presupposition the thing that Bill Nye is trying to prove. He is trying to prove that Creation is not science. By repeatedly creating a false dichotomy of "science versus Biblical Christianity." There is no such choice to be made. There is nothing observed in science that in any way conflicts with a rational reading of Scripture. However, Bill has to define science as including all the assumptions, poor logic, and made-up stories of the elite while filtering out any information that contradicts those with political power. When he uses this phrase, "conventional, mainstream science" as opposed to the same scientific method applied without the arbitrary assumptions of the ruling scientific elite, Bill Nye is actually using circular reasoning. In other words, the fact that Bill Nye has a presupposition that the concept of Creation, a young Earth, and a global Flood never happened is not proof that the Creation, a young Earth and a global Flood never happened. In addition, this is also the logical fallacy of appeal to tradition.
- "So" Bill Nye is again using a Neuro Linguistic Programming technique, tying two ideas that have nothing to do with each other with the word, "So." This type of hypnotic technique can be used to deceive, as it is in this case. Let's restate the argument without the misleading vividness, so it can be processed mentally, and you will understand how this works. Bill Nye: " And I’m delighted to see that the people in the back of the room appear just that much younger than the people in the front. So, this idea that you can separate the natural laws of the past from the natural laws that we have now, I think, is at the heart of our disagreement." Breaking down Bill's logic, it goes like this: the light that is reflected off people who are closer to me comes to my eyes first; therefore, the heart of the disagreement is whether or not you can separate the natural laws of the past from the natural laws we have now. When you see what Bill is really saying, his unreasonableness becomes obvious. We are now focusing on the use of the word, so, which implies that what comes before the so proves what is after the so. How can light taking time to travel prove that the disagreement is about whether or not natural laws have changed? Had Bill Nye used the word, "therefore," instead of the word, "so," it would have still been an irrational conclusion, but it would not have worked as Neuro Linguistic Programming because we think of "therefore," as preceding a conclusion. The word, "so," also precedes a conclusion but doesn't flag it to the conscious mind. Bill is probably as confused as he is confusing. That is, he is probably sincerely wrong. All of this happens to execute a framing fallacy, making the question something that is not the question. The question is simple. Is God to be relied on or is the human mind to be relied on? Another way to put this: is God the God or are humans gods? Does science, of necessity, have to be based on the Secular Humanist religion, or is there room for the Almighty Creator God? The heart of the disagreement is this: is arbitrary assumption more valid than Divine revelation?
"Your assertion that all the animals were vegetarians before they got on the Ark, that’s really remarkable. I have not spent a lot of time with lions, but I can tell that they’ve got teeth that really aren’t set up for broccoli. That these animals were vegetarians until this Flood is something that I would ask you to provide a little more proof for. I give you the lion’s teeth. You give me verses translated into English over 30, what, centuries? So, that is not enough evidence for me. If you’ve every played telephone, I did, and I can remember very well in kindergarten, where you have a secret and you whisper it to the next person, to the next person, to the next person, things often go wrong. So it’s reasonable to me that instead of lions being vegetarians on the Ark, lions are lions and the information that you use to create your worldview is not consistent with what I as a reasonable man would expect."
- "Your assertion that all the animals were vegetarians before they got on the Ark . . ." Bill Nye is using a straw man fallacy. Specifically, it is the logical fallacy of appeal to extremes. Ken Ham never said that all the animals were vegetarians before they got on the Ark. In fact, all the animals were vegetarians before the Fall--and there is evidence that the Fall into sin did something that changed that a long time before the Flood. There were changes that took place with the Fall, but we only know what has been revealed. Ken often says that the very good Creation was not so good after the Fall. The change that took place after the Flood was that God gave the animals to mankind for food, and God put the fear of man into the animals. We really don't know if there were any other changes, except for the scientific evidence for the continental sprint that caused the separation of the Americas, which appears to have taken place during the Flood.
- ". . . that’s really remarkable" Bill Nye is claiming victory before presenting his argument. The arguments that followed were not reasonable, but he was claiming victory to sway the crowd and make his arguments seem as if they were credible.
- ". . . they’ve got teeth that really aren’t set up for broccoli." Bill Nye is using the logical fallacy of appeal to ridicule. At the same time, he is using the logical fallacy of unwarranted extrapolation in two ways. First, he is extrapolating the present state of the lion into the past, when we have no way of checking what the cats were like 4,500 years ago. Keep in mind that a representative of the cat kind was brought on the Ark, not every species of cat. Second, he is extrapolating the idea that sharp teeth equate to carnivorous animals. Ken Ham pointed out that there are many animals that are plant eaters that have very sharp teeth.
- "That these animals were vegetarians until this Flood is something that I would ask you to provide a little more proof for. I give you the lion’s teeth. You give me verses translated into English" Bill's logical fallacy goes this way: You didn't give me evidence that the animals were vegetarians until the Flood came; therefore, the Biblical account of the Flood is not true. First, this whole thing is a straw man, since no one said the animals were vegetarians. Second, that conclusion doesn't follow from the premise. Third, Bill pretends that the lion's teeth are evidence, but they don't prove anything. And Bill implies that Ken has no evidence for the Flood using appeal to ridicule as proof. There are two kinds of evidence for the Flood, physical and direct Divine revelation through the Bible. Both are overwhelming. Bill has presented no credible evidence against the Flood. Bill Nye repeats the same mantra about the Bible being translated into English, an argument which has been adequately refuted. Suffice it to say that the reason that we know that the Bible is the utterance of God and that it is without error is because of Divine revelation. God reveals this to us. The English translations may have their problems, but we do have the original text and there is much physical evidence that the Bible is intact and that the statements in the Bible are accurate, backing up the revelation that comes from God. Not only that, but there is no way to rationally read the Biblical account of the Flood and come up with any interpretation other than that the Flood was catastrophic and devastating to the Earth.
- "So, that is not enough evidence for me." Bill Nye is using the logical fallacy of personal incredulity. The real question is this: When interpreting what we can observe in the present in order to extrapolate that information to determine what happened in the past, is arbitrary assumption more reliable (Bill Nye's approach) or Divine revelation and historical accounts more reliable (Ken Ham's approach)?
- "If you’ve every played telephone, I did, and I can remember very well in kindergarten, where you have a secret and you whisper it to the next person, to the next person, to the next person, things often go wrong." Bill Nye is using circular reasoning, assuming the very thing that he is trying to prove. He is assuming Naturalism to prove Naturalism. He is assuming no God to prove no God. When he was in kindergarten, there was no Divine providence to keep the message correct. Bill Nye is assuming that the Bible was preserved by natural means, and that would seem to make sense to him seeing as he assumes that God doesn't exist. But to think this way is circular and not reasonable. In addition, the kindergarten students were not trained in keeping an oral tradition, but the Hebrews were.
- "So" Again, Bill Nye is using the word, "so," for Neuro Linguistic Programming. Here is the logic in simple form. Bill Nye: We played telephone in kindergarten and information was lost; therefore, lions were carnivorous going back in time 4,500 years. When read that way, it does not follow, but your mind doesn't process it that way. It almost seems to make sense when you hear him say it this way. Even if we take the entirety of what Bill Nye said--which is not the way the mind naturally processes information, but someone may say, well, you took it out of context--Even in context, it the conclusion doesn't follow from the premise. Bill Nye: We played telephone in kindergarten and information was lost; therefore, The Bible has errors. The Bible has errors; therefore lions were carnivorous going back in time 4,500 years. Both those statements are logical fallacies of non sequitur. The conclusion doesn't follow from the premise--the proof doesn't prove what is claimed.
- "So it’s reasonable to me that instead of lions being vegetarians on the Ark, lions are lions" First, one of each kind was on the Ark. What the cat looked like, we don't know. By presupposing a lion, Bill is committing a fallacy. OK. Let's imagine for a moment that it was a lion. Bill Nye is using the logical fallacy of unwarranted extrapolation. This is not what a reasonable man would do. We have no idea what these particular lions were like before the Flood or on the Ark. They would probably have been young, but we don't know. We have no idea the extent to which God intervened to keep the animals in control. We have no idea of the design of the cages that Noah build, but we know that God gave the design for the Ark and that God did it in such a way that it would work. We know this by revelation. Skeptics tend to use a mindset that says, "If I can make any assumptions that would make something in the Bible impossible, that proves that the Bible has an error." That is the depth of their irrational thinking. It is illogical.
- ". . . and the information that you use to create your worldview . . ." Bill Nye is using innuendo to cover a fallacy of unsupported assertion. Bill Nye is assuming that this is really about a comparison of Ken Ham's worldview versus Bill Nye's worldview--except that Bill thinks that his own worldview is real reality and not a worldview/fake-reality at all. Everyone has a worldview, a fake-reality. We all have the problem that our fake-reality seems more real to us than real reality. However, the comparison is between Bill Nye's fake-reality and what God is revealing by Divine revelation. And, the fact is that the physical evidence supports Creation and the Flood much better than it supports the notion that everything made itself. Bill Nye's fake-reality has to explain away several scientific laws. The revelation that God gives has no such problems. There is nothing that is observed scientifically that in any way conflicts with a young Earth, Creation, and the Flood.
- ". . . is not consistent with what I as a reasonable man would expect." Bill Nye is using the logical fallacy of unsupported assertion. Just claiming to be the reasonable one and claiming that Ken Ham is not reasonable doesn't make it so. In fact, it's a bit childish. This is the same as saying, "I, Bill Nye, am a reasonable man because I say that I am; therefore, believe me. And anyone who disagrees with me is unreasonable; therefore, don't believe them."
"So, I want everyone to consider, If we accept Ken Ham's point of view . . . that the Bible, as translated into American English, serves as a science text and he and his followers will interpret that for you, I want you to consider what that means ... It means that Ken Ham's word, or his interpretation of these other words, is somehow to be more respected than what you can observe in nature, what you can find in your backyard in Kentucky. It’s a troubling and unsettling point of view and it’s one I very much would like you to address when you come back."
- “Mr Ham’s point of view” Bill Nye is misrepresenting the situation. Here's what we know by revelation. The truth is that Jesus Christ uses His followers, His Creation, and the Bible to reveal Himself to us, to make Himself obvious to us. God speaks to us through these, while Satan speaks through the corrupted human mind, skeptics, etc. And God is to be more respected than the arbitrary assumptions, made-up stories, irrational statements, and outright lies that a powerful elite group of people use to try to convince us of their false interpretations of what we can observe in nature. What we can clearly see in nature is evidence for the invisible God, and not only His eternal power but also His Godhead. Those who love light and righteousness acknowledge God as creator. His sheep hear His voice. Whoever is on the side of truth listens to Him. Those who love darkness and unrighteousness refuse to acknowledge God as Creator, and they are without excuse. And even as they did not think it was important to be closely joined to God in their knowledge, God completely put them into the custody of their depraved minds to do those things that should never be done. Throughout the debate, Bill Nye continued to imply that Ken Ham and a few other people believe that Bible and what it says about the Creation. This is a combination of several logical fallacies. It is trying to imply a bandwagon fallacy, but God doesn't care about the bandwagon. Whoever will may come, but God has no problem of working with a remnant of people. However, the majority in the U.S. aren't deceived by the big-bang-billions-of-years-molecules-to-man hoax.
- "the Bible, as translated into American English" Bill Nye again uses this red herring fallacy. Whether the Bible is translated into King James English or American English or Canadian English is immaterial. We have the original Textus Receptus, consisting of thousands of matching ancient texts, and we have the dead sea scrolls to confirm that these are accurate going way back in time. Nothing that can be observed using scientific method in any way conflicts with the details that exist in the Bible, which is not true of other texts that deal with science, not even a five-year-old science text book. And, most importantly, the Holy Spirit informs us that the Bible is the Word/Utterance of God and that it is without error, that it cannot be broken. Atheists love to imply that the Bible could not possibly have been preserved,. However, this is based on the logical fallacy of failure to look at the evidence. The evidence clearly shows that the Bible has been preserved intact, and much has been written on this subject. But skeptics tend NOT to do their own research. They go to Atheistic sites that post thousands of previously refuted arguments, including the ones that Bill Nye is using repeatedly. Perhaps that's where Bill got his material.
- “Ken Ham's point of view ... that the Bible serves as a science text” Bill Nye is using an old straw man fallacy that is frequently used by Atheists. Of course, Ken Ham never said this, and God obviously didn’t write the Bible as a science text. Keep in mind, that logical fallacies are lies. In debates, where someone is trying to drive politics in their direction, skilled persuaders like Bill Nye often purposely use fallacies to deceive. We can't read Bill's mind as to motivations or his ethics or lack of ethics, but we do observe him pushing an anti-Christ political agenda. He is politicking.
- “that the Bible serves as a science text and he [Ken] and his followers will interpret that for you,” Bill Nye again uses this ad hominem fallacy and innuendo to try to convey an idea that Ken Ham is some sort of little cult leader, but God's Spirit is much bigger than Ken Ham. What God is doing in the Earth is much bigger than a single person. There are no big shots in the Body of Christ. Some have more responsibility, though. As far as Bill's false innuendo that very few believe God as He speaks through Scripture, according to recent polls, about 45 percent of Americans say they believe in Creation. Most Americans don't believe the big-bang-billions-of-years-molecules-to-man story. (source) (source) These are productive contributors to society and many are scientists in such fields as chemistry, physics, engineering, medicine, etc. (source) Bill Nye is attempting to demonize and marginalize, to paint Ken Ham as some sort of cult leader with a few misguided followers. Both demonizing and marginalizing are logical fallacies meant to play to the crowd rather than to deal rationally with the issue at hand. In addition, Bill Nye used the fallacy of the outright lie by implying that Ken Ham is the leader of those who believe the Bible. Jesus Christ is the leader and always will be, and Ken Ham is a follower of Christ. In fact, the reason that people believe what they read in the Bible is because they led by the writer of the Text on a moment-by-moment basis. And Jesus Christ speaks to them through the Bible. A lot of people know about Ken because of the work that he does, but there are many other people who are also serving Christ in various ways who do equally important work, believing God as He leads, and knowing that the history that God wrote into the Bible through His holy prophets is without error. Bill Nye is also committing the logical fallacy of appeal to emotion, trying to incite emotion against Ken Ham by implying that Ken Ham is trying to control them. This is a form of hate mongering. What Ken Ham said was that it is reasonable to compare the big-bang-billions-of-years-molecules-to-man story, which is based on arbitrary assumptions, to the revelation that God is speaking to us through the Bible. And the revelation fits the scientific facts, while the big-bang-billions-of-years-molecules-to-man story does not fit the facts. In fact, God speaks to us through Creation. The scientific facts are revelation. Those who believe the big-bang-billions-of-years-molecules-to-man story have simply added to what God says through Creation or taken from what God is saying through Creation, and added and subtracted from His words using assumptions.
- “I want you to consider what that means ... It means that Ken Ham's word is to be more respected than what you can observe in nature, what you can find in your backyard in Kentucky.” When Bill Nye asks "you to consider what that means," he is asking you to presuppose it and let it become part of your worldview. This is a Neuro Linguistic Programming hypnotic technique. Bill Nye has distorted Ken Ham's point to something that can be easily defeated--a straw man fallacy, a fallacy of extension, misrepresenting what Ken said. Then, he wants you to pound his (Bill's) distorted version into your mind and consider what this distorted version means. In case you don't get it, he gives you the false answer. This is what he did throughout the debate in quite an obvious way, which makes it very difficult to think that he has any desire to find truth but is rather simply politicking. The actual question: "Is Creation a viable [feasible] model of origins in today's modern scientific era?" In other words, "Is it possible to create a model of Creation in today's modern scientific era?" The Creation Model doesn't conflict with any known scientific law. The big-bang-billions-of-years-molecules-to-man model falls apart on the laws of science, which must be explained away with ad hoc hypotheses to be believed.
- "It means that Ken Ham's word is to be more respected than what you can observe in nature, what you can find in your backyard in Kentucky.” Bill Nye is using the logical fallacy of distorted evidence. No one has observed the supposed big bang, not even in their back yards in Kentucky. No one has observed matter and energy popping into existence from nothing, not in Kentucky or anywhere. No one has observed a slow process of molecules turning into people over a period of billions of years, not even in the back yards of Kentucky. In fact, there is no evidence, that is not dependent on arbitrary assumptions, that the big bang happened and that molecules-to-man happened or that the Flood did not happen. On the contrary, the evidence that God created the Heavens and the Earth, that the Bible is accurate, that the worldwide Flood occurred, and that God exists is absolute, both in the material world and also in the personal Divine revelation that every person who comes to Christ in submission, respect, and sincerity receives from Christ. This is so obvious that God says that those who fail to acknowledge Him are without excuse and those who deny this history are willingly ignorant. God says that we are not to listen to them.
- "Ken Ham's word, or his interpretation of these other words, is somehow to be more respected than what you can observe in nature" Bill Nye is using the logical fallacy of false comparison. Bill Nye paints it as a comparison of Ken Ham's interpretation of the Bible as opposed to actual observations--note that his examples of observations have all failed because they were Bill Nye's interpretations of what could be observed, and Bill Nye was interpreting those observations based on arbitrary assumptions and made-up stories. Bill's assumptions and stories came out of his worldview/paradigm/fake-reality, which seems, to Bill, to be more real than reality itself. In fact, both Bill Nye and Ken Ham have the same observations--as Ken Ham has repeatedly stated, but Bill Nye keeps using the logical fallacy of repetition as proof, failing to acknowledge the fact that Ken Ham has exposed Bill Nye's fallacy. There are a few real comparisons that could be made. This is a comparison between Bill Nye's interpretation (based on assumptions and fanciful stories, which are based on a deep-rooted fake-reality) of the observations as opposed to Ken Ham's interpretation (based on Divine revelation that is received from the Holy Spirit flowing through the Bible). This is a comparison the human ability to make up stories and assumptions (to lie) as opposed to God's ability to reveal reality.
- "It’s a troubling and unsettling point of view" Bill Nye is using the logical fallacy of appeal to emotion again. There is no question that God is troubling to a person who wants God to not exist, who doesn't want to acknowledge God. It can be very unsettling to them. And they tend to be troubled and unsettled whenever they find out about anyone who personally knows Jesus, the real, living Christ. However, the emotion that Bill Nye is feeling has no impact at all on reality. This is why appeal to emotion is a logical fallacy.
- "It means that Ken Ham's word, or his interpretation of these other words, is somehow to be more respected than what you can observe in nature, what you can find in your backyard in Kentucky. It’s a troubling and unsettling point of view and it’s one I very much would like you to address when you come back." Bill Nye said, knowing that the format would not allow time for an answer to Bill Nye's obvious logical fallacies. Bill is using this tactic of tossing the elephant repeatedly, asking questions knowing that there won’t be time to answer. This tactic can take many forms. In this case, Bill Nye knew that the format was going to change and that there would be questions from the audience. He repeatedly asked unrelated questions so that Ken Ham would not have time to answer those questions in this format. In this way, Bill Nye could create the false impression that Ken Ham didn't have answers to his many questions. The questions were foolishly easy to answer, though. Tossing the elephant is a clever tactic that works to fool people, but it is dishonest communication.
Last updated: Aug, 2014
Answers for Witness
Stories Versus Revelation
Creation, Flood, Etc.
Is Creation a Viable Model of Origins?
Creation Debate: Rebuttals
Toons & Vids
Creation Debate Issue #1: Assumptions Versus Divine Revelation
Creation Debate Issue #2: Historical Science/Observational Science versus Just Science
Creation Debate Issue #3: The Topic of the Debate
Creation Debate Issue #4: Predictability
Creation Debate Issue #5: Personality and Other Irrelevance
Creation Debate: Each Man's Purpose in Debating
Creation Debate: Opening Statements
Creation Debate: Presentations
Creation Debate: Rebuttals
Creation Debate Counter Rebuttals
Creation Debate: Questions from the Audience
Answer to Critic
Appeal to Possibility
Argument to the Future
Love Between a Man and Woman
Righteousness & Holiness
Proof by Atheism
Scriptures About Marriage
The Reason for Rejecting Truth
Witness on the Internet
Flaky Human Reasoning
How Do You Know?
The Real Purpose of the Church
The Real Purpose of Life
From Glory to Glory
REAL Faith--What it IS & IS NOT
REAL Love--What it IS & IS NOT
How to be Led by God
How to Witness
Wisdom: Righteousness & Reality
Holiness & Mind/Soul
Redemption: Free From Sin
Stories Versus Revelation
Circular Reasoning-Who is Guilty?
How Can We Know Anything?
Mind Designed to Relate to God
Answers for the Confused
Fossil Record Says: "Creation"
Avoid These Pitfalls
Public School's Religion
Public School Failures
How can we know anything about anything?
That's the real question