This is a rush transcript from the “Creation Today Show,” released August 25, 2011. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.


On this episode of Creation Today on August 25, 2011, Eric Hovind and Paul Taylor welcome special guest Sye Ten Bruggencate of The discussion is divided mainly into two parts, which, the first deals with master illusionist Penn Jillette. Sye Ten Bruggencate seeks to expose, answer and challenge the magician, who is busy trying to convince Christians that there is no God.

The second half of the show deals with a YouTube clip where an atheist poses a question to Christians about objective morality. Is there such a thing, and how does God and His character fit into the picture? Find out in this episode of Creation Today.


Eric Hovind: From the CTN studio in Pensacola, Florida this is Creation Today where we believe the Bible is literally true and scientifically accurate in every detail. I’m one of your hosts, Eric Hovind

Paul Taylor: And I’m Paul Taylor, and on today’s show we’ll be answering questions on the Bible and also we’ll be exposing a master illusionist’s greatest trick. Showing at a church near you.

Eric Hovind: Yeah [laughter] our guest today is Sye Ten Bruggencate of, and on the show you plan on challenging this illusionist to a debate.

Sye Ten Bruggencate: That’s right.

Eric Hovind: Ooh, can’t wait to check that out, right after this.


Eric Hovind: Joining us for another episode of Creation Today is Sye Ten Bruggencate from, a native of Canada, and we’re pleased to have you in the studio. Thanks for coming in.

Sye Ten Bruggencate: Glad to be here.

Paul Taylor: Of course we had Sye on the program a little while ago

Eric Hovind: That’s right, a couple weeks ago

Sye Ten Bruggencate: Except this time he’s actually here

Eric Hovind: It’s the real deal

Paul Taylor: Instead of on a little screen

Eric Hovind: Yeah, I think you look better on the little screen personally, but

Sye Ten Bruggencate: Thanks a lot

Eric Hovind: Sye’s been a great friend of the ministry. Sye and myself did a cd, an audio cd that we put together recently, called “Think”. And it’s what everyone knows about God, and if you haven’t checked that out, I’d encourage you to go to Where could they get this at

Paul Taylor: Let me think

Eric Hovind: Some stores that they could

Paul Taylor: How about

Eric Hovind: would be a great place to get that right there. So if you wanna get “Think – what everyone knows about God”, I’d encourage you to check that out. That’d be great.  Also, of course, man this is turning into a hot item, the “Unbelievable” debate series. If you have not heard this, it’s a debate series of three debates that Sye did with Paul Baird of the UK. And it started a little over a year ago, and did a series of three debates, wow! You like this one too, don’t you?

Sye Ten Bruggencate: Yeah, they explain the apologetic quite well and they show what happens when the atheist encounters a biblical apologetic, the biblical way to argue for God’s existence, to defend your faith.

Eric Hovind: It really, I mean, I don’t mean to be rude or cruel to Paul Baird but wow, he really gets..the floor is mopped with him. No doubt about it. It’s really bad what’s going on.

Sye Ten Bruggencate: Well, one thing I stress, too, is that we have to keep in mind that except for the grace of God that we’re in his shoes.

Eric Hovind: Mmm.

Sye Ten Bruggencate: So we have to pray for Paul. And pray for people who defend their faith in such a manner.

Eric Hovind: And he did give us permission, right, you remember that? He gave us permission to pray for him, so, Paul Baird

Paul Taylor: He did, yeah. On the early debate he’d said no, and the on the actual televised debate he changed his mind

Eric Hovind: Yeah So if you end up getting this, it will come with three cd’s, along with a dvd of the debate that we did right here on the show, that I just found absolutely fascinating is he would not defend his own world view. He kept jumping around to other worldviews, I found that interesting. Then, to top that off, you can go to and you’ll find a conversation that Sye and myself kind of got plopped into, got invited into, but they recorded the conversation and it really is a follow-up, it’s really round four of this three part debate called “Unbelievable”, and you can check that out on or at your website, you’ve got it posted there, right?

Sye Ten Bruggencate:, just navigate to the multimedia page and you can find that exchange.

Eric Hovind: Man, I’m telling you, it really is, really is good stuff. Okay, so, couple different things that are available there. We said at the introduction that you wanted to challenge this illusionist to a debate. You said this is his greatest trick, and you wanna expose what that trick is on this show.

Sye Ten Bruggencate :  That right. Now, I wanna ask you a question, Eric. If you profess atheism, do you think it would be possible for you to get into churches and tell people that there is no God?

Eric Hovind: Is there a way for me to ask a pastor to let a pastor in? What do you think Paul?

Paul Taylor: Well, it sounds very unlikely

Eric Hovind: I don’t think that would happen

Paul Taylor: You would’ve thought that churches would be wanting people to believe that there is a God.

Eric Hovind: I can understand maybe in certain circumstances where they were putting that down and they were really exposing the truth, like what we’re gonna do here, but just somebody to come here and preach there is no God? No, I can’t imagine that.

Sye Ten Bruggencate: Now, there’s a fellow who actually..Christians and churches ask permission to post his video in their churches. And he’s telling people that there is no God. Now you’d think that would be a great trick, wouldn’t you?

Eric Hovind: That’d be a really good trick.

Sye Ten Bruggencate: Well, Eric, I give you Penn Jillette.

Eric Hovind: He that’s exactly what he’s done.

Sye Ten Bruggencate: Mmhmm.

Eric Hovind: Penn Jillette, if you don’t know, was approached by a believer and handed him a bible after one of his shows.  And Penn made a video about this conversation that he had, and said he was really deeply touched by it.  And it really moved him.

Sye Ten Bruggencate: Yes.

Eric Hovind: But in the video he professes his atheism and says, “I know there is no God.”

Sye Ten Bruggencate: That’s right, and Christians are being duped. I think this is his greatest trick.  Because what first of all what he’s saying is that there is no God, and of course we’ve discussed on this show previously that everybody knows that God exists.

Eric Hovind: That’s exactly right.

Sye Ten Bruggencate: And in another respect too, I think it’s kind of patronizing.  Because can you imagine somebody saying, “Well, if you really believe in Santa Claus, you should be putting milk and cookies out for him.” Or “If you really believe in the tooth fairy, you should be putting your teeth under the pillow.”

Eric Hovind: He’s relating Christianity to that, isn’t he?

Sye Ten Bruggencate : That’s right, and not only that, he’s getting this message into churches.  And I watched a video later on where he actually he’s happy about a woman who saw this video in a church, went and looked at some of his material, and started doubting the existence of God now.

Paul Taylor: Wow.

Sye Ten Bruggencate : And I think that is his trick. That he’s telling people that this is a good thing that Christians are doing, so that they love his message, they put it in their churches, and people actually pursue what he’s saying, and they start to doubt God.

Paul Taylor: There is a logical fallacy, isn’t there, called bait and switch, which is in a sense what he’s doing. Because to some people what he would appear to be giving a nice honest open argument, but what you’re saying is that there’s something deeper behind that people really should spot if they’d just stop and think. Now the trouble is so often, unfortunately, Christians do not always stop and think We don’t stop and think  [laughter], I mean, why would a church want to use his video? I think it’s probably because there’s a place in the video clip where he’s talking about the attitude of a Christian who doesn’t want to evangelize or [00:06:54] thinks he’s putting it..or proselytizing it I think that’s what Christians perhaps are picking up on. Do you want to comment on that bit, that he’s saying if a Christian believes that there’s a God, believes that there’s a heaven and a hell, and that an atheist is going to hell, then, if they don’t actually share their faith, then they must really hate that person.

Sye Ten Bruggencate : That’s right

Paul Taylor: And that is perhaps the bit that the churches are picking up on. So

Sye Ten Bruggencate : That’s right

Paul Taylor: Why is, Sye, then it not ok for the churches to talk about?

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Well, that’s the bait. And he looks like a very reasonable, kind man. And actually, you know, I’ve seen some of his stuff and it’s apart from the vulgarity, and apart from the blasphemy, I think that I could get along with Penn quite well. But I’ve seen some of his stuff, and what he does, he gets this into the churches, makes it looks like he’s a friendly fellow, but then he slides in the “there is no God.” He names a definitive statement. So people start to like him, people start to cozy up to what he’s saying, and he throws in his “there is no God”, and I think that he wants to seed doubt into them.

Paul Taylor: Yes

Eric Hovind: And you brought a clip about that, right?

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Right.

Eric Hovind: Okay, so you’ve got a clip, and this is Penn saying there is no God, and this is something that’s being shown in churches?

Sye Ten Bruggencate : That’s right.

Eric Hovind: Alright, let’s take a look at that clip.

[Video clip playing]

Now, I know there’s no God. And one polite person living his life right doesn’t change that.”

Eric Hovind: So, here in churches, Penn is saying “I know that there is no God”?

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Right.

Eric Hovind: Is that true?

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Absolutely not. We know from Romans 1 that everybody knows that God exists. Now keep in mind, Penn is an illusionist. So this is his biggest trick.

Paul Taylor: It’s incredible really that the church would want to do that, and want to have this there. But they’re doing it because they haven’t really thought through the issues. And that’s the sort of thing that you’re trying to challenge them on, isn’t it?

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Exactly, I want to expose this.

Eric Hovind: And he does this on multiple occasions with lots of videos saying look, I appreciate what you’re doing, and you should be doing it, and relating it’s just the marketplace of ideas, this is what happens out there, in the marketplace. Everybody presents their ideas. But he’s assuming, of course, that his is right. And that ours is wrong.

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Right.

Eric Hovind: And he’s preaching that in the church.

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Exactly.

Eric Hovind: Alright, well I know you’ve got a challenge for Penn. We’ll take you…and let you present that challenge to him right after this.


Paul Taylor: Welcome back. You’re watching Creation Today with me, Paul Taylor, and Eric Hovind, and our special guest for today, Sye Ten Bruggencate. Now we were looking just before the break at the greatest illusionary trick of the master illusionist Penn Jillette. And how he is getting into churches, a video that actually states there is no God. And I know that we’ve got some things to say about that. And Sye, you’re going to be particularly wanting to say something about that. And you have something

Eric Hovind: Yeah, I know Sye you wanted to challenge Penn specifically here. I have really enjoyed the debates that you’ve done. The “Unbelievable” debate you did with Paul Baird, and so if Penn is watching this I’d encourage him to check that out, because you can actually expose the trick, pull the mask off, so to speak, from what he is saying he believes to what he really believes.

Sye Ten Bruggencate : I’d encourage people who are watching this to actually tweet Penn, to send this to Penn, because I’d really like to talk to him and offer this challenge to him. Now, this isn’t the first time that Penn has been challenged to a debate. And he’d declined them in the past, and I actually look at some of these challenges, and I agree with Penn. Because a lot of times that these are presented as an anonymous Christian on a YouTube thing, and it wants to be a written debate. But, Penn, I’m just an average guy. I don’t have a PhD, I don’t know all of these evidences, and I would like to debate you. And I’d be happy to fly to Vegas, and have a debate where we discuss the existence of God. My website is You’ve just written a book called “God, no!” We have polar opposite views. And, it doesn’t have to be a formal debate, but I would like to just on a stage with you, and in front of an audience, where we can express our views and I’d love to be able to meet you and you know what, Penn? Even if we just go for lunch, and not have a debate, I’d like to do that. But I think it would be a great idea if the two of us got together and debated these issues. You can look at my website, you can look at my qualifications. I am just a dude with a website, and you have no reason to be intimidated by what I say, and I don’t have any reason to be intimidates by what you say. Let’s just get together and debate this issue.

Eric Hovind: Wow, so an open debate there to Penn Jillette. Penn, I’d encourage you to take him up on that. I wanna come. I wanna come check that out. Penn, I’d love to meet you, and I’d love to come to your show. Man, you guys do some really neat stuff, and then you do some stuff obviously that I wouldn’t wanna take my wife or family to. [Laughter]

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Yeah I think I’d be rocking out of that show unfortunately.

Eric Hovind: Hey, we’ll be we’ll watch all the magic tricks and learn illusions, and learn how to do those, cause I love that stuff. Growing up I’ve always been involved in that. Okay, so, why is it so important, and why don’t churches see exactly what’s going on here? What is it that they’re getting deceived by? How are they so easily deceived?

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Well, I think that they’re relieved in having somebody from the other side, an atheist, actually telling Christians what they should be doing. And they’re so excited by this message that they put it out there, not realizing the undertone in that message is that there is no God. So like I say, he’s really mocking us when he does this. He’s complimenting us, and then he’s, you know, taking our trying to take our feet out from under us by saying yes, you should be doing this, but there really is no God. You know, and what I wanna stress is that everybody knows that God exists, and that’s the kind of thing that I wanna talk about him in this debate. Because he is saying that everybody’s an atheist. We’ve seen other videos where he’s said stuff just like that.

Eric Hovind: Right.

Paul Taylor: Yeah.

Sye Ten Bruggencate : So we have polar opposite views and surely two average guys can get together in front of an audience and discuss these issues. And people can actually see which worldview has a foundation.

Paul Taylor: What’s his motivation when he says that Christians should proselytize? What does he think then..what message is he putting across that their motivation should be in order to proselytize?

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Well, I, you know, I think that he doesn’t mind getting that amount of truth out there. Because it’s absolutely true that Christians should be proselytizing.

Paul Taylor: Yeah.

Sye Ten Bruggencate : And he’s actually proselytizing for atheism

Paul Taylor: Yes

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Which is inconsistent with atheism.

Eric Hovind: Right, that’s what I keep wondering is if atheism is true, and this world does not matter, and our thoughts are just a bunch of random chemicals that just, you know, do whatever they do, and that’s what produces our thoughts, then ideas don’t matter. Thought you know this whole “where do we come from?” it doesn’t matter, you’re gonna die and that’s the end. I mean, if everything really came from a big bang, if everything really evolved and we’re just evolved primordial soup, then nothing you do or say will ever matter at all. You’re not gonna you’re not gonna do some great thing with your thoughts or your ideas and why change somebody who’s religious to try to convert them to atheism? If that’s something that they think helps them, and that’s the way their brain is fizzing, then just let their brain fizz that way.

Paul Taylor: Yeah, so but of course that’s not the attitude that the new atheist would recall  [indiscernible 00:15:17]the attitude of the atheist in the past but the new atheists are a whole breed of, well, [indiscernible 00:15:23] fundamentalist atheists in a sense [laughter] and that do believe in proselytizing. So Dawkins says well, you can believe in what you’d like, but what actually matters is the truth. [Laughter] And of course as far as he’s concerned, the truth is that there is no God. But in one sense we’re then saying that Penn Jillette is within that new atheism, because he’s proselytizing for atheism. But he’s doing it in a manner that is very very different from the likes of Hitchens and Dawkins and so on. Would that be fair?

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Absolutely, he’s cozying up to the Christians, to try and get his message across. And, you know, the thing is, these new atheists, they don’t mind spreading their message. But what they do seem to mind is debating people on this. And, you know, I can understand why people wouldn’t wanna debate a PhD in Philosophy or in Logics [?], or something like that. But I’m just an average guy, so I don’t see any reason why Penn wouldn’t want to take up this challenge and get together and actually talk about these issues.

Eric Hovind: I’ll pay for the tickets.

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Oh, that’s fantastic, you heard that? [Laughter]

Eric Hovind: We will get the tickets to head out there. Now I know there was another another challenge recently put out on YouTube saying “Hey, Christians, I want to understand, I’m really just trying to understand what objective morality is. You say objective morality comes from God, here’s my problem with that, let me know what you think.” And so, I wanna get into that, and I wanna show a little bit of his video and what he’s trying to do. And really expose for those of you out there what’s really going on. Do they really believe in an objective morality, and do we believe in an objective morality? What is it that we really believe? And, so if it’s alright, after this next break I’d like to I’d like to do that, would that be ok?

Sye Ten Bruggencate : That sounds good. I think that that’s a thing that a lot of new atheists are starting to do. I see it creeping more and more into what they’re saying is that they’re actually trying to trick Christians

Eric Hovind: Mmmm

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Into believing that they don’t actually believe in absolute morality, and say can you please give us some evidence for this absolute morality? When in fact they do know that absolute morals exist. So I found that trend to be the case that they’re saying things that they don’t believe in order to try and convince Christians to enter into the debate, and we’re saying that you cannot even debate without starting with God.

Eric Hovind: Wow. Well, after this break we will take a look at a little clip from that, and expose the truth of objective morality. Be right back.


Eric Hovind: Welcome back to Creation Today, we’re talking with Sye Ten Bruggencate and Paul [laughter] I almost called you Paul Baird and Paul Taylor about this whole idea of the greatest illusion ever told with Penn Jillette. Wanted to get into a..really a video that I found interesting. Somebody was questioning objective morality. Theists say there is an objective morality, there’s an objective law and that comes from God.  He is saying in this video, isn’t that just a isn’t that just a larger scheme subjected morality to whatever God wants. So let’s talk about this. Also, Sye, you did a program recently, with an atheist, Justin Schreiber[Spelling?]?

Sye Ten Bruggencate : That’s right, not Justin Bieber.

Eric Hovind: Not Justin Bieber, no. Justin Schreiber, and you’re whole thing on this video is a great dialogue pretty deep though into the intellectual level. Tell us about that and where people can watch that, or you wanted to mention some things

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Well they can also watch that on my website, it’s the multimedia page, and it’s my exchange with Justin Schreiber. Now, the interesting thing about my exchange with Justin is that he has the same problem that the fellow from this clip that we’re about to play has.

Eric Hovind: Mmm Okay.

Sye Ten Bruggencate : He’s trying to disassociate the standard of morality with the character of God. He wants to know if God is subject to the standard. And what I say is that God is subject to his character. But perhaps we can play that quote, and

Eric Hovind: Okay

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Listen to that fellow, and give him an answer.

Eric Hovind: Here’s the question that he asked. Let’s check this out, and then we’ll come back and talk about is there objective morality or just a larger picture subjected morality. Watch this.

[Video clip playing]

“Is God bound to anything? Or bound by anything? Is there an absolute morality that God is incapable of breaking?…”

Paul Taylor: Now that video was produced by someone on YouTube called “Non-stamp Collector”, that’s his very very interesting name [Laughter]. It comes from the idea that I’ve seen on other atheist websites and videos. People accuse atheists of being atheism of being a religion. And they claim it isn’t a religion in the same way that non-stamp collecting is not a hobby.

Eric Hovind: Yeah except they go around telling people “don’t collect stamps, don’t collect stamps.” [Laughter]

Paul Taylor: That’s right.

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Yeah, they have conventions in places like Copenhagen, and they come up with manifestos on morality.

Eric Hovind: Wow. So, “Non-stamp Collector”, we disagree. You do have a non-stamp collecting religion. [Laughter]

Paul Taylor: Yes, we think they protest too much.  But the question that’s being asked there is really to do with this question of morality. And whether God is justified in certain actions, and he gave us an example, places in the Bible where, I supposed he’d be thinking about where Elisha sets the wild bears on people…[indiscernible 00:22:19] Yeah, and so that’s just about the most vicious and cruel way of being killed. What’s God doing in that particular situation? And, is God actually submitting to His own level of morality.

Eric Hovind: Saying that, okay, if God did it there, then what’s wrong with the Romans loosing wild animals on the Christians? That’s not immoral, because God did it. Therefore it is morally okay. And we were talking about this the other day.  And, really, you brought up a point, Sye, that said you know, if that person’s daughter had been raped and murdered, would they think that that was an okay way for the murderer, or for the one who did those acts, to die? Would th nothing would be too bad! Would that be would releasing wild animals on Hitler, if we were able to do that, would that be too bad for Hitler? And really, I know we wanna bring out a couple points here, but really, one of the things we do in this, we are underestimating our sin before a holy and righteous God. All of us we deserve way worse than being ripped apart by wild animals. We deserve hell.

Paul Taylor: Yes

Eric Hovind: That’s how bad it is, that’s how bad our sins are before Almighty God. So, I see what he’s saying here, but you wanted to bring up another point about this

Sye Ten Bruggencate : People are confusing the action with the justice of God. Now God of course is just in doing whatever He chooses to do. But what God chooses to do is within His character, and God is bound by His moral character. And we discussed this on the debate with Paul.

Eric Hovind: Yeah

Sye Ten Bruggencate : That stealing is not wrong because your neighbors get mad, or because you deprive them of property. Stealing is wrong because God is not a thief, and we’re created in His image. So it’s not some arbitrary command that makes stealing wrong, that makes sin wrong. These things are wrong because they’re based on the unchanging character of God.

Eric Hovind: Now that’s something that Justin kept bringing up. He was saying well hold on, is it God’s character that makes it wrong, or is it whatever decides God whatever God decides is wrong?

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Right, and I’ve tried to I tried to stress to him that these things are inseparable. It’s just like saying, is wat wetness subject to water, or is water subject to wetness? They’re inseparable. God is moral. God is logical. And in that discussion there’s a fellow named Chris Bolt of, and he took apart this conversation in six parts and he did a podcast about it. And he’s a lot smarter than I am, so he can explain the issues that Justin was having, and explain the points that I was trying to make, better than I do. And, the beautiful thing about this is that exchange you and I had on Paul Baird’s podcast, Chris Bolt is doing the same thing right now.

Eric Hovind: I’m loving that he’s gone through two parts so far, so if you wanna check out his podcast, six episodes, on the talk you had with Justin, and two so far on the round four, I guess you could call it, of that “Unbelievable” debate where we talked to Paul Baird

Sye Ten Bruggencate : I love it, cause Chris Bolt is making us sound smart..[Laughter].

Eric Hovind: I know, he’s I remember listening to the first part, and he goes “What Eric just did here was reductio ad absurdum.” [Laughter]

Paul Taylor: That’s exactly what you were thinking

Eric Hovind: What did I do? But basically he was saying, hey, that’s the technical term for reducing that argument to absurdity. And, really, that’s

Paul Taylor: What you quote is Proverbs 26:5.

Eric Hovind: Yeah. Answering the fool according to his follies, so that he is not wise in his own eyes, showing him how foolish he is, exposing that foolishness. Which is what we wanna do with Penn Jillette, and we don’t mind doing that with Mr. Non-Stamp Collector either, do we? [Laughter] Okay, so, is there an objective morality? Answer that question. Here’s his question: Is God bound by anything, and is there an absolute morality?

Sye Ten Bruggencate : Absolutely.

Eric Hovind: Of course there is. Even in his video, if you watch it in its entirety, he’s assuming that ripping people apart by wild animals is wrong.

Paul Taylor: So he’s making a value judgment based on his presupposition.

Eric Hovind: Yes.

Paul Taylor: And that’s quite important into with the episode for the [indiscernible 00:26:20] with Elisha, because at first sight, you know, one of the accusations thrown is, well, Elisha set the bears on the [indiscernible 00:26:27] this, this this, is a punishment from God because they shouted “baldie” at him. [Laughter]

Sye Ten Bruggencate : I think that’s just. [Laughter]

Paul Taylor: But of course, what they were actually doing because of the particular status that Elisha had at that time, or it was known, is that they were really mocking God, and it’s very clear when you read the context, that that’s what it is. It’s an actual attack on God that was being dealt with. Not an attack on the person of Elisha and his particular physical appearance. But it was an actual mockery of God and His Word.

Sye Ten Bruggencate : One thing I stress with unbelievers, too, if you think that was bad, stick around. Wow. See this is an indication of God’s wrath towards those who reject Him.  So, I mean, this is an indication that people should be afraid of what’s to come.

Eric Hovind: Wow. So, is there an objective morality?  Of course there is an objective morality, and we are going to be judged by God’s objective moral standards, the ten commandments. If you’ve never seen how you’re gonna do on that quiz, go to, and check out “Are you a good person?” I encourage you to do that. Well that is our show today, I wanna thank Sye for joining us again, coming down to Pensacola and joining us. If you have questions, you can send them into .  Of course you can follow us on Twitter @creationtoday, and Facebook

Paul Taylor: Well, do remember please to tune into each episode podcasted on iTunes or wherever you get hold of them. There archived online at Well, this has been a production of God Quest Ministries.

Eric Hovind: Thank you so much for joining us. Sye, I hope they enjoy checking out your website,, and of course, there’s some great resources available at God bless.