Bill Nye: The (Pseudo-)Science Guy

An interesting read from the latest AP Newsletter:

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Bill Nye: The (Pseudo-)Science   Guy 
In light of the coming debate between Bill Nye and Ken Ham on February 4th, we wish to recall your attention to Bill Nye’s statements several months ago regarding Creation and evolution.

Many of us who are scientists grew up watching “Bill Nye the Science Guy,” and learned to love science in the process. Sadly, Bill Nye came out in 2012 with a video that indicates he is vehemently opposed to parents who teach children that evolutionary theory is false. In a YouTube video posted by BigThink.com, Nye said:

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#apologetics-press, #creation, #debates, #evolution, #science

Thomas Warren chart on atheism

Bro. Warren used this chart in his debate with Anthony Flew, says a brother on FB.

#atheism, #debates

The Challenge of Disproving the Mythological “Straw Man” Argument

“Expert” debaters on the WordPress forum, especially when it comes to defending atheistic evolution, love to throw around the “straw man” accusation at Theists.

More often than not, especially when an accusation of the mythological “straw man” gets thrown around, people feel misrepresented because they are misrepresenting themselves. They fail to nail down their position to anything except for the ole’ “I don’t believe and I don’t have to prove why I don’t believe” line. Then they bemoan any other attempt to get the conversation beyond the point of “I can’t disprove the existence of God any more than I can disprove a unicorn, a one-eyed purple people eater or a flying spaghetti monster.”

Well, I can’t disprove that a giant spruce tree didn’t light the fuse to set off the multicolored atomic bomb that created the mother of all black holes which then led to the stretching of alien DNA thus resulting in life on Earth 43.298347 years later, and neither can you! But then again, that’s not my proposition. My proposition is that life was created by the Supernatural Being who can be seen through nature and whose will can be understood through the Bible.

in modern philosophy the straw man lives

(Photo credit: Templestream)

So let’s the put the proverbial shoe on the other foot for a moment.

There are those who contend for and hold to the proposition that says life is nothing but a chemical process and that we’re nothing but “higher thinking” animals with no soul and no ultimate responsibility, but to that I say, “PROVE IT.” Prove to me that life can come from non-life. Until that can be proven, any atheistic evolutionist debater and “believer” is sidestepping the exact thing that they require from Theists – the burden of proof through scientific testing.

But then answer of, “I don’t have the answer(s) because we’re still learning” will be given as if that’s a proper permission slip to keep from being “pigeon-holed” into anything.

So let me get this straight – the only thing that you will say is that you don’t believe in God, but you can’t disprove that He exists, yet you’re still sure that He’s not out there. Talk about circular reasoning!

Let’s try it like this: You (as an atheistic evolutionist) believe in a-biogenesis, but can’t prove that it exists, yet you’re still sure that it’s out there.

A belief in one is chosen over the other with the later lacking as much supposed scientific proof as the former yet still receiving the scientific benefit of the doubt! And to say such a thing is a “straw man” argument??? How does that misrepresent the argument?

The mythological “straw man’s” life didn’t even come from “nothing” but rather something to which people hold on to when they believe in something that can’t be nailed down. So before the next “straw man” accusation gets propped up out in the debate garden, please remember to be equal and rational with the “prove it” challenge.

Now if I could only disprove that the “straw man” even exists…wait a second, I can’t disprove something that I don’t believe in! Right?

#atheism, #debates, #evolution, #existence-of-god, #straw-man, #theology

Deaver-Vick debate begins tonight

Debate on Holy Spirit

Weylan's photo from the debate site

The debate begins tonight, at 7 p.m. Eastern time. Johnny Robertson said on Facebook that it can be seen on several spots:

The Debate is now being re-streamed from several websties and or blogs. OABS is going to have it up live, Gospel Of Christ, and Biblical Notes. See it from face book here.

Weylan will be tweeting during the debate, apparently. He has a preview up of the debate on Biblical Notes.

We trust this debate will contribute to a better understanding of the work of God’s Spirit and his presence among his people.

#debates, #holy-spirit, #indiana, #mac-deaver

What A Compliment! (3)

In truth, debates are actually good and productive, and the words of the Baptist preacher should encourage reconsideration. When the Lord walked on this earth he forthrightly challenged the error that was preached in his day. While the Lord exhibited much compassion, his confrontational approach is something to be emulated. The people of Jesus’ day were amazed at the authority by which he spoke (Matthew 7:28-29), and they took note that the religious leaders were frightened by him also (John 7:26, 46; 12:42-43). They had good reason to be for when a person hears the truth, the purveyors of error lose influence. Truth has nothing to fear. Now, more than ever, is the time to preach the word (2 Timothy 4:2) and “reason” publicly and/or privately with those that hold positions that are contrary to the Scriptures (Acts 20:7; 17:2-5). Let us encourage this effort.

Some think that public oral debates are of little to no value for today’s society, but I have never subscribed to that way of thinking. Debates and debate books have been very influential to me in my own growth. It is difficult to have our individual ways of thinking challenged; it is for you, it is for me, and it was for those who lived during the first century. As we seek to know the truth of God’s word and help others to make an application, let us be strong enough to allow our ways of thinking to be critically examined. What does truth have to fear? Debates are an honorable venue for the investigation of truth. As men of God we must controlled by God’s truth (Galatians 2:20); The Lord’s truth needs men who will be firm and Christ like in ALL regards.

#baptist-preacher, #debates

What a Compliment! (2)

In this apology, he stated a reason why some refuse to debate any longer. It is the opinion of some that debates have declined in frequency because there is no interest in them. Perhaps this true, but is there another reason why debates have waned over the years? In accordance with the sentiments of the apology, there is another reason; maybe we can call this the real reason. Some potential participants in the debate setting do not want what is considered true to be put through critical examination alongside an opposite view. When the truth is held up for discussion and an opposite view is the opponent, the opponent will be shown to hold a position not true. When such occurs, it is not long before the error loses influence with people interested in truth.

Preachers who proclaim error, especially after it has been exposed, care little for debates any longer. Their congregants, after the hearing of truth, become more interested in truth and the influence of the preacher wanes. The Baptist preacher, apparently, did not want to take his conviction into this environment and allow it to be critically examined. He did not want another to have an opportunity to show him to be mistaken in his view. In the apology he offered for his withdrawal, he actually paid a compliment to the process and those who support the process. Since truth holds firm when attacked, those who hold positions contrary to truth decide it is in their best interest to no longer enter controversial engagements. The Baptist preacher who withdrew from the debate actually concedes that our debates are doing much good in that many are converted to the truth of the Bible by these discussions. “As I said, I had reservations after considering that putting my name to this debate would draw people to the CoC [church of Christ] organization’s doctrine. Most up north do not know of your group, and I do not want to introduce them to it.” This, in effect, says that the position he once held to could not hold up when scrutiny came from biblical examination. Again, this compliment (although backhanded) given to the Lord’s people is worthy of note. Some may think that discussions of this sort hold the interest of few people anymore; in truth, however, there is another reason why these types of discussion no longer continue as they once did, and the remarks of the Baptist preacher makes this clearer.

The last in the series will be tomorrow.

#baptist-preacher, #debates

What A Compliment (1)

Each person has a particular way in which he learns best. Some learn best by way of visuals such as power point presentations, images on a television screen, and things of this sort. Others learn best by shear effort at perseverance in reading difficult material and others, still, learn best through controversy (debates). This latter is a good way for me to learn. I learn when issues are analyzed and proponents of issues are put through the “crucible” of controversy or critical examination. Oral debates and debate books are very useful tools in learning because we learn not only what particular issues divide people, but also how the individual issues stand up to scrutiny. I value the debates I have in book form, and when I am old and gray, these books will still be on my shelf for they will certainly keep my mind active.

Not long ago (April 2009), I traveled to the Chicago area (Schaumburg) for a public oral debate on an issue that divided two religious men; that issue was the nature of man in relationship to God’s saving grace. Before I arrived, I received a courtesy call from the local preacher about one of the participant’s withdrawal from the debate (a Baptist preacher). I learned that he withdrew because he could no longer defend the proposition he signed to defend. After receiving the call, I reflected on two things: first, it was disappointing that he withdrew on a Thursday before the debate was to begin the following Monday; second, it was good that the denominational preacher had actually learned that the position he agreed to defend did not measure up to the truth of God’s word, and thus was indefensible.

Because the debate was so near to time of start, the Baptist preacher sent a letter of apology to the local preacher and the other participant in the debate. I was fortunate enough to read that letter of apology, and took special note of what he said. As it turns out, the Baptist preacher was strongly encouraged by another Baptist preacher not to be involved in the debate, and it was not because of the weakness of the proposition he signed on to defend. The reason he was encouraged strongly against participation was along this line: “…my reservations about the debate were confirmed when he [his preacher friend] warned me not to go through with the debate. He pastored down south where your group is larger, and he said one method for drawing converts is through these debates. I spoke with others who cofirmed [sic] this.”

First of three parts

#baptist-preacher, #debates

Learning Styles

I am currently writing an article on a debate I attend that never took place. My wife just rip me up in proof-reading (which is what I asked her to do). In the course of the article I mentioned that I learn by critical examination. I want my position critically examined in order for me to get a better handle on what is correct. I try to defend my position, but I am aware enough that when I am on the short end, I must rethink. This benefits me a lot.

How about you? How do you learn best or, perhaps, to ask differently, how do you prefer to learn?

#debates, #learning