This week there was a lot of buzz about the debate between Bill Nye (the science guy) and Ken Ham (founder of Answers in Genesis and the Creation museum in Kentucky). I watched the debate, and I learned a few things.
The most important thing I took away from this debate is that if you aren’t answering the questions you’ve been given with straightforward answers then you seem like you don’t know what you are talking about.
One other thought I left with is that science and the bible are not mutually exclusive of one another. They go together. The bible is not a science textbook. In fact, the first few chapters of Genesis are written in poetry form – not as a scientific treatise on the creation of all things. But that doesn’t negate the fact that there are many ideas that have been discovered by science that the bible mentioned thousands of years before their discovery.
Let me give you some examples of things mentioned in the bible hundreds and thousands of years before they became known facts proven by science. These predictions are the very thing that Ken, in my opinion, should have been using to answer Bill during the debate.
1. The earth is round. Isaiah 40:22 This wasn’t proven or even accepted as anything other than heresy until the 1500s.
2. The earth isn’t held up by some mythological creature. Rather it is suspended in space by seemingly nothing. Job 26:7 Job is the oldest book in the bible.
3. The universe is expanding. Isaiah 45:12. Edwin Hubble discovered this in 1929.
4. There are deep canyons in the ocean floors. 2 Samuel 22:16. This was discovered in the 1900s.
5. There are springs on the ocean floor. Job 38:16. This was discovered in 1977 (the year I was born) yet written about in the earliest book of the bible.
6. There are currents in the oceans. Psalm 8:8. This was discovered in the 1800s.
7. Water evaporates from bodies of water and turns to clouds then condenses to form rain and eventually goes back to its sources. This is known as the hydrologic cycle. Job 36:27-28. Bernard Palissy is credited with this discovery after he wrote his explanation of it in the 1500s.
8. The law of entropy. This is part of the second law of thermodynamics. Psalm 102:22-26. This was explained in the 1800s.
9. Some constellations are held together by gravity and move as a unit. Others wander in the sky with a unique “pattern” unlike other constellations. Job 38:31-32. Scientists now say that the stars in Orion’s Belt are all moving in different directions – thus the loosing. The Pleiades contain 250 stars that travel together in grouping held together by gravity. Arcturus is in a class of stars unique in the universe. They don’t travel like other stars. The sun travels at about 12.5 miles per second. Arcturus travels at a whopping speed of 257 miles per second. Who will guide him? Can you even catch him?
10. We are made up of atoms and molecules which can’t be seen with the naked eye. Hebrews 11:3. The light microscope which allows us to see at the cellular level wasn’t invented until 1590.
11. The sun isn’t stationary. Rather it moves at a high rate of speed. Psalm 19:4-6. People used to think this was talking about the sun revolving around the earth when in fact it was talking about the sun warming all things it is near as it moves through the galaxy. This movement of the sun was discovered around 1800. It is interesting to note that many people still didn’t consider the sun a star at this point in history.
12. The earth once had a main land mass that we call Pangea. Genesis 1:9; 10:25. It is thought that the continents began to drift during the flood, but continental drift wasn’t seriously suggested until the 1800s.
These are only a sampling of scientific facts mentioned in the bible. It’s more than just a moral folk tale. It is the Word of the Creator who systematically patterned everything. That’s why it says in Romans 1,
“For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities–his eternal power and divine nature–have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.”
Don’t ignore science in the name of “science”.