Evolution vs. Creationism: Bill Nye Joins the Debate

Bill Nye, the Science Guy, joins Ask Science to discuss the concepts of evolution. Turns out, there’s no reason that science and religion have to be mutually exclusive. Click to check out an exclusive audio excerpt of Bill Nye's new book, Undeniable: Evolution and the Science of Creation.

Lee Falin, PhD
3-minute read
Episode #122

I've never understood why so many Christians get hung up about evolution, nor why so many scientists seem to get so hung up on creationist beliefs. It seems to me that so much resource and effort is wasted on this argument.

The famous chemist and Christian Henry Eyring was once asked to join in a debate to "dismantle evolution once and for all." His response was:

"...the important fact for me is that the Lord is directing the affairs in His Universe, not exactly how he does it. Whether or not some organic evolution was used or is operating seems to me to be beside the point. He is infinitely wise. I just work here. If He told me in detail how He works I'm sure I wouldn't understand much of it. The effort spent on the crusade you envision would be better spent trying to understand a little better how God works. Sorry if we see things a little differently.”

Evolution is science and has nothing to do with religion or belief.

I've never understood why people think that it is impossible for a scientist to believe in God or that a sound understanding of science somehow helps you to prove that religious belief is merely superstition.

The Nobel Prize winning physicist Richard Feynman once said:

“I do not believe that science can disprove the existence of God; I think that is impossible. And if it is impossible, is not a belief in science and in a God - an ordinary God of religion - a consistent possibility?”

Again, I think there is so much effort wasted when we see evolution as an attack on Christianity and an equal amount of waste when scientists feel they need to attack religion in retaliation. There is plenty of blame on both sides. 

To again quote Feynman:

“Western civilization, it seems to me, stands by two great heritages.  One is the scientific spirit of adventure - the adventure into the unknown, an unknown which must be recognized as being unknown in order to be explored; the demand that the unanswerable mysteries of the universe remain unanswered; the attitude that all is uncertain; to summarize it - the humility of the intellect.  

The other great heritage is Christian ethics - the basis of action on love, the brotherhood of all men, the value of the individual - the humility of the spirit...How can we draw inspiration to support these two pillars of western civilization so that they may stand together in full vigor, mutually unafraid?  Is this not the central problem of our time?”

Undeniable: Evolution and the Science of Creation, the new book by Bill Nye, takes an approach similar to Eyring and Feynman. He explains the concepts of evolution in a thoughtful way, careful to point out that there’s no reason that science and religion have to be mutually exclusive. 

We have a special treat for Ask Science listeners today. An exclusive audio excerpt from Bill Nye's new book Undeniable.

Click the player above to listen or download the episode from iTunes or Stitcher to listen to a free audio selection from Undeniable.

If you have a question that you’d like to see on a future episode, send me an email at everydayeinstein@quickanddirtytips.com. If you liked today’s episode, you can become a fan of Ask Science on Facebook or follow me on Twitter, where I’m @QDTeinstein.

Please note that archive episodes of this podcast may include references to Ask Science. Rights of Albert Einstein are used with permission of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Represented exclusively by Greenlight.

About the Author

Lee Falin, PhD

Dr. Lee Falin earned a B.S. in Computer Science from the University of Illinois, then went on to obtain a Ph.D. in Genetics, Bioinformatics, and Computational Biology from Virginia Tech.