I was captivated by the recent Ken Ham/Bill Nye debate that we witnessed via live video stream here in our church auditorium on Tuesday, Feb. 4. The first thing that hit me was this: why don’t we see more debates like this in the public arena? Surprisingly, Bill Nye was highly criticized for even participating in the debate. Apparently, according to his colleagues, discussing a topic with someone who disagrees with you is dangerous because it appears to give equal validity to both viewpoints. This, modern secular science elites cannot suffer! Well, I for one want to stick up for Bill Nye and thank him for having the courage to buck the system and allow someone to question his position – even in public! I don’t agree at all with his current theory of origins, but I respect him for at least discussing it!
The other thing that hit me was this: Christians have NOTHING without the Word of God! Our faith and worldview would absolutely crumble if the Bible were not true. To secularists who deny the supernatural and spiritual realm, this is at the root of why Christians cannot be taken seriously. As Bill Nye asked Ken Ham several times during the debate (my paraphrase), “How can you put so much trust in a 2000 year old book that has been translated into American English?” This is THE watershed issue that separates Christians from everyone else. It was pretty obvious that Ken Ham believes the Bible, and Bill Nye doesn’t. Until a person crosses the bridge from unbelief to belief IN GOD’S WORD and burns the bridge behind them, they will never accept the Creationist viewpoint, much less come to salvation through faith in Christ! Any discussion of a supernatural creation of the universe just doesn’t compute to someone on the far side of the bridge.
What I find really cool is that, in an almost autobiographical moment, the Bible explains the reason why many people do not believe and accept it as truth. 1 Corinthians 2:14 says, “But people who aren’t spiritual can’t receive these truths from God’s Spirit. It all sounds foolish to them and they can’t understand it, for only those who are spiritual can understand what the Spirit means.” Those who do not have the Spirit of God working in their lives, will not understand or accept the Word of God. This confirms the truth that salvation is initiated and completed by God. Ephesians 2:8 states that salvation is “by grace, through faith”. Romans 10:17 reveals the origin of this saving faith when it states that “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.” Therefore, the saving faith that results from believing God’s Word, is the result of the gracious work of the Holy Spirit in a person’s life! This proves that God chooses those He would save. He initiates and completes the entire process. Ephesians 2:8 confirms that the grace that leads to salvation is actually a “gift” given by God. It’s all from Him. This is amazing, especially when I think that, for reasons unknown to me (other than His great mercy and love!), His Spirit opened my mind and heart at age 9 to believe and accept His Word! That work of the Spirit enabled me to understand the Gospel and trust Christ for the forgiveness of my sins and eternal life….praise God!
For many people, like Bill Nye, who do not accept the Bible, there is nothing we can humanly do to change their minds. But, what we can do is continue to build and nurture relationships with these people, live a compelling life of truth balanced by love, and pray that God, by His grace, would send His Spirit to open their hearts and minds so they can accept and believe the Word of God and the saving truth of the Gospel! Ken Ham knew that he could never debate Bill Nye into the Kingdom. But, taking the time to discuss and debate important issues and concerns in a respectful manner may give Ken the chance to continue the dialogue with Bill. Let’s pray for Bill and for all those in our lives that reject God’s Word and are living on the far side of the bridge. Pray that the Spirit of God would change their hearts and minds, by His grace, and lead them over the bridge from unbelief to belief! Until then, keep the relationship and the dialogue going. Maybe someday we’ll hear about “Bill Nye – The Bible Guy!”