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 Where is God in Japan?
March 20th, 2011
01:00 AM ET

Finding faith amid disaster

By Jessica Ravitz, CNN

Around the world, people are still struggling to come to terms with the Japanese earthquake and tsunami, which have left more than 8,000 dead, thousands more missing and hundreds of thousand others homeless. The threat of a nuclear crisis only adds to the uncertainty.

In times like these, many people find comfort in their faith. But disasters can also challenge long-held beliefs. The CNN Belief Blog asked some prominent voices with different views on religion how they make sense of such suffering, where they see inspiration amid destruction and how they respond to people who wonder, “How could God let this happen?”

Rabbi Harold Kushner, author whose books include “When Bad Things Happen to Good People”

Whenever a disaster like this occurs, I go back to the Bible, to the First Book of Kings. Elijah, in despair over the situation in Israel, runs to the desert, back to Mt. Sinai to find the God of the Revelation to Moses.

"And lo, the Lord God passed by. There was a mighty wind, splitting mountains and shattering rocks, but the Lord was not in the wind. There was an earthquake but the Lord was not in the earthquake."

To me, that is the key: the Lord was not in the earthquake.

Natural disasters are acts of nature, not acts of God. God cares about the well-being of good people; Nature is blind, an equal-opportunity destroyer.

Where is God in Japan today? In the courage of people to carry on their lives after the tragedy. In the resilience of those whose lives have been destroyed, families swept away, homes lost, but they resolve to rebuild their lives. In the goodness and generosity of people all over the world to reach out and help strangers who live far from them, to contribute aid, to pray for them.

How can people do such things if God were not at work in them to lend a counterweight to a natural disaster?

The Rev. Tesshu Shaku, chief priest of Nyoraiji Temple, a Jodo Shinshu (True Pure Land sect of Buddhism) temple in Ikeda City, Japan

Buddhism is called a religion with no god. So we don’t think God caused this, according to the Buddhist way of thinking. We think of the law of cause and effect, searching for a cause. It is the same approach as science. The cause of this earthquake is the friction between the North American plate and the Pacific plate.

The Japanese are more focused on relationships as opposed to faith, feeling the pain of others. I have witnessed this at the time of the Hanshin Awaji earthquake. [In 1995, the Great Hanshin earthquake on the island of Awaji killed about 6,500 people.] There were many people who came to the affected area to help and volunteer.

There is a word, “earthquake children,” for people whose perspectives were affected by the disaster. They became very active in community service or became Buddhist monks. So people will be more spiritual, feeling the pains and joys of others.

The Rev. James Martin, Jesuit priest, culture editor of America magazine and author of “The Jesuit Guide to Almost Everything”

For the believer, there is no satisfactory answer for why we suffer. Each person has to come to grips with that. It’s not as if some magic answer can be found. But the idea of God suffering along with us can be very helpful.

The Christian believes that God became human and that God underwent all the things we do. Jesus on the cross cried, “My God, my God, why did you abandon me?” Christians do not have an impersonal God, but a God who understands what it means to suffer. People can relate more easily to a God who understands them.

Where is God? God is right there with the people who are grieving and sorrowful. In my own life, when I have felt great sorrow I have trusted that God is with me in this and that I’m not facing my struggles alone.

Oftentimes people become more religious in times of sorrow. They find that they are able to meet God in new ways. Why? Because when our defenses are down and we’re more vulnerable, God can break into our lives more easily. It’s not that God is closer, it’s that we’re more open.

Dr. Sayyid Syeed, national director of the Islamic Society of North America’s Office of Interfaith and Community Alliances

These sort of natural disasters become the collective responsibility of all mankind to mobilize our compassion and resources to ease the pain of the people who have suffered.

This disaster is not the result of any sins of these people; we need to be clear that there is no belief that these victims “deserved” it for any of their actions. Rather, Muslims see these kinds of tragedies as a test from God. Muslims believe that God tests those he loves, and these tragedies also serve as a reminder to the rest of us to remain grateful to God for all our blessings and cognizant that we must support those in need.

These kinds of calamities should push us in positive ways. They should strengthen our faith in God and in his goodness. We attribute the things we don’t understand to his limitless wisdom and comfort ourselves that he is with us and he loves us, so there must be some meaning in what has happened, even if it is beyond our comprehension here at this time.

We are trained by our faith that every suffering, whether big or small, brings us closer to God’s mercy and forgiveness, to the extent that the Prophet Mohammad (peace be upon him) said, if you are walking and feel a thorn pierce your foot, you should know that even this little bit of pain brings you divine blessing and God’s forgiveness. These times of suffering give us an opportunity to demonstrate patience and faith, and therefore, become closer to God.

Every natural phenomenon challenges us as God’s trustees on this Earth, showing us that we should continue to study and explore ways of safeguarding humankind and all creatures from being subjected to this kind of devastation. It is the collective duty of all humankind to put resources in this and advance our understanding of how to respond to these disasters in a scientific way.

Thich Nhat Hanh, Vietnamese Buddhist monk, writer and activist who founded the Unified Buddhist Church in France, and Plum Village, a Buddhist community in exile

As we contemplate the great number of people who have died in this tragedy, we may feel very strongly that we ourselves, in some part or manner, also have died.

The pain of one part of humankind is the pain of the whole of humankind. And the human species and the planet Earth are one body. What happens to one part of the body happens to the whole body.

An event such as this reminds us of the impermanent nature of our lives. It helps us remember that what’s most important is to love each other, to be there for each other, and to treasure each moment we have that we are alive. This is the best that we can do for those who have died: We can live in such a way that they can feel they are continuing to live in us, more mindfully, more profoundly, more beautifully, tasting every minute of life available to us, for them.

Sam Harris, author of books including “The End of Faith,” and co-founder and CEO of Project Reason, dedicated to spreading scientific knowledge and secular values

Either God can do nothing to stop catastrophes like this, or he doesn’t care to, or he doesn’t exist. God is either impotent, evil, or imaginary. Take your pick, and choose wisely.

The only sense to make of tragedies like this is that terrible things can happen to perfectly innocent people. This understanding inspires compassion.

Religious faith, on the other hand, erodes compassion. Thoughts like, “this might be all part of God’s plan,” or “there are no accidents in life,” or “everyone on some level gets what he or she deserves” - these ideas are not only stupid, they are extraordinarily callous. They are nothing more than a childish refusal to connect with the suffering of other human beings. It is time to grow up and let our hearts break at moments like this.

The Rev. Franklin Graham,  president and CEO of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and Samaritan's Purse, an international Christian relief organization

I don’t believe God does want this to happen. I don’t think it was ever God’s intention.

We know that there are going to be storms in life. No matter what happens we need to keep our faith and trust in almighty God.  And I want the people of Japan to know that God hasn’t forgotten them,  that God does care for them and that he loves them.

We care and God cares, and we’re standing by them.

CNN's Carol Costello contributed to this report

- CNN Writer/Producer

Filed under: Belief • God • Japan

soundoff (1,886 Responses)
  1. Finding faith amid disaster

    Mr. Graham's statement sounds more hypocrite than others... so, reflect patiently folks!

    March 21, 2011 at 1:30 pm |
  2. Amyjo

    There's so much going on in the world today. Everyone's just trying to make sense of it all. Check out http://www.jamesbouvier.com

    March 21, 2011 at 1:03 pm |
    • Observer

      "The book describes a mysterious message delivered to planet Earth almost 2,000 years ago warning future generations to prepare for the end of the world."

      Amazing that it took him to figure this out after billions of people couldn't. Sure.

      March 21, 2011 at 1:49 pm |
    • Amyjo

      I always like to make sure I've researched ALL the facts before I decide for myself what to think

      March 21, 2011 at 1:58 pm |
    • Observer

      Good for you. More people should.

      March 21, 2011 at 2:33 pm |
  3. Amyjo

    There's lots of craziness in the world today. Go to http://www.jamesbouvier.com for answers.

    March 21, 2011 at 12:58 pm |
  4. Anthony Cimini

    We know Daddy didn't mean to kill your entire family, Billy. It wasn't his intention to take your mommy, brothers, and sisters away from you. There are going to be storms in life, Billy, and you must not lose faith in your Daddy, no matter how bad he hurts you. He doesn't mean to act in such a callous and capricious manner, that's just the way he is. Oh, Daddy didn't kill your family? He just didn't protect them when they needed him most? That wasn't his fault, Billy. He has a plan for you, for he believes this disaster will make you more faithful and trusting in him. Keep the faith, Billy!

    March 21, 2011 at 12:54 pm |
  5. God is OK

    All this is quite interesting. But to no real end. We are clever people and are quite capable of believing or denying anything. Why do I beleive? Bottom line...bit of a mix. I will admit to some measure of "hedging my bet". After all, why put everything on the line for a cause that is guaranteed to lose. The second element in my soup is a simple openess to the possible. The key is to not beleive the Bible is a script from CSI and accept that science rules. (Where did all this matter come from? We learned that in science class – energy and matter and convertible). Why was there any earthquake – plate tetonics. Simple. The 3rd element is an inner voice that tells me that I am not in this for myeself. Let me explain. Earning my way to "Heaven" is not for me. I don't care for the idea. Think about it, endless time – the "tryanny of time" in my book. When my days are over, I would rather just call it a day. My passion to invest the relationships around me seem pointless unless they are guided by and driven by God. Without God, I would be satisifed to go off with a good novel to read and be avoid people entirely. Without God, relationships all seems pretty pointless. Bottom line. I buy into every argument an atheist puts forward. I have simply chosen to take a leap of faith into faith. I don't hate anyone for denying. So, don't hate anyone for beleiving. Just hate the them if they treat you with anything less than full respect.

    March 21, 2011 at 12:41 pm |
  6. MGT

    I feel sad for so many of you who not only don't believe there is a God that loves you, but, will outwardly curse him! If you are so smart, go and gather the evidence that shows the Bible is not God's Word and therefore God does not exist. I am certain after reading so many negative comments about God, that you are ignorant to what the Bible even says because you have never looked at it. WOW!! Like playing rush and roulette with a revolver and one bullet!! What if your ignorance does lead to eternal damnation for your soul?? Don't you think that with such POSSIBLE High Stakes for your eternal future, you owe it to yourself to at least have an open mind and investigate before drawing conclusions that there is no God?? Look how you are made...the design within that supports life....pure random chance?? Worst scientific theory I have ever heard!!!

    March 21, 2011 at 12:39 pm |
    • Observer

      A recent poll/test showed that the average atheist and average agnostic knows more about the Bible than the average Christian and also have higher educations.

      March 21, 2011 at 12:42 pm |
    • Jay

      As an atheist who has read the Bible cover to cover in at least four translations, I can assert that reading the Bible is the quickest path to non-belief. Who would wish to believe in the evil, capricious puppetmaster described in those pages?

      Also, the way you describe evolution betrays a complete ignorance about its most basic principles. It's ironic that you judge people for evaluating the Bible without reading it, and then immediately demonstrate that while you have a childishly incomplete knowledge of evolution, you are willing to dismiss it. Take your own advice, and read a little.

      March 21, 2011 at 1:00 pm |
    • Colin

      It's Russian Roulette actually, not Rush and Roulette. Also, the burden of proof does not, nor will it ever, fall on non-believers, as that would be trying to prove a negative. We say the thing that is invisible does not exist. By default, we are in the right. You, and believers, say the thing that is invisible DOES exist. So the burden of proof is on you. Prove that it does exist.

      March 21, 2011 at 2:08 pm |
  7. brad

    To the atheist, such suffering is only the result of natural chaos at work. Lion tears apart lamb in order to eat. Earthquakes kill people. End of discussion, right? But most people look for a higher or deeper meaning to suffering. "Why does evil happen to good people?" How did ideas about Evil and Good get into our human nature? Evolution maybe? Evolution might change our bodies, but where did the ability to ponder come from? If evolution did this, then evolution has produced a freak. It seems to me that some part of humanity is genuinely outside of "nature", regarding it, pondering it. Call it "spirit", "mind", whatever. I think that there is a Mind that our human minds participate in. Seems to me that the atheist is so busy looking through her microscope and doing calculations (with 10% of the brain !) that she misses some very subtle and important clues.

    March 21, 2011 at 12:34 pm |
    • Jay

      "With 10% of the brain"?

      I know that internet comment boards might make it *seem* as though people only use a fraction of our brains, but it's simply false.

      The internet is *right there.* You should do the tiniest bit of research before you make such a preposterous statement.

      March 21, 2011 at 1:15 pm |
    • Nonimus

      "Pondering" or thinking may very well be an evolutionary artifact through emergent properties of large brains. This could be supported by the evidence of self-awareness and limited abstract thought in lower animals such as primates, dolphins, elephants, crows, etc.

      Also, Jay is correct the, humans only use 10% of our brains, statement is a myth. Different areas of the brain perform different functions, e.g. speech, sight, hearing, motor control, etc., and it all gets used. Maybe not at the same time but it does get used.

      March 21, 2011 at 1:27 pm |
    • brad

      @Jay "The internet is *right there.* You should do the tiniest bit of research before you make such a preposterous statement." You jumped right to the sarcasm. Are you always this easy to offend? Be careful you don't let your emotions cloud your reasoning ability.

      March 21, 2011 at 2:03 pm |
    • brad

      @Jay
      Yes, the internet is right here. Do blindly believe everything the internet tells you? Elsewhere, you state that you've read the bible four times and reject it because of God's cruelty. You are taking a literalist view of the bible – the same thing you probably accuse Christians doing. Live up to your own standards.

      March 21, 2011 at 2:09 pm |
    • NL

      Brad-
      I'll help you out. Try reading "Do People Only Use 10 Percent Of Their Brains? :What's the matter with only exploiting a portion of our gray matter?" Scientific American By Robynne Boyd, February 7, 2008

      http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=people-only-use-10-percent-of-brain

      From the article:

      "Though an alluring idea, the "10 percent myth" is so wrong it is almost laughable, says neurologist Barry Gordon at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore."

      But maybe the idea comes from this:

      "Another mystery hidden within our crinkled cortices is that out of all the brain's cells, only 10 percent are neurons; the other 90 percent are glial cells, which encapsulate and support neurons, but whose function remains largely unknown. Ultimately, it's not that we use 10 percent of our brains, merely that we only understand about 10 percent of how it functions."

      Now, a question for you, do you think that a soul could exist in a human without a fully functional brain?

      March 21, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
    • Observer

      @Brad,
      You said "You are taking a literalist view of the bible", so are you saying that Christians shouldn't believe everything in the Bible? So it wasn't true that God killed every person on the face of the earth except for 6? So it isn't true that God issued all kinds of commands to kill people like unruly children, etc.?

      March 21, 2011 at 2:25 pm |
    • brad

      @NL "Though an alluring idea, the "10 percent myth" is so wrong it is almost laughable, says neurologist Barry Gordon at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore." This is another "scientists now think" moment. Science is supposed to displace religion. Yet science displaces itself all the time. It was not religion that first suggested we use only 10%.

      Your question about whether I believe a soul can exist outside a fully functional brain. Well, NL, you already know I'm no neuroligist, but here goes. I believe you and I are more than just biochemistry. We can observe the processes of our bodies. But whatever else there may be to us is to close to observe. In this regard, we cannot be under a microscope and looking through it at the same. I allow for the possibility that some part of us can exist outside of our wiring.

      "Now, a question for you, do you think that a soul could exist in a human without a fully functional brain?"

      March 21, 2011 at 2:49 pm |
    • NL

      brad-
      " then evolution has produced a freak"
      No more than God produced a freak when he created man separate, and better than all his other creations, right?

      If we are 'freaks' within the natural world, then we are only 'brain freaks' because other creatures beat us in the other body systems. Hawks have better vision, rabbits better hearing, wolves a better sense of smell. Some creatures have senses that we do not have. Many, if not most, large mammals can run faster than us, and have better natural weapons like claws and fangs. By any of these criteria each of these is also a 'freak' because they have an advantage, an advantage that still sees thousands of people still being killed by animals every year, right?

      So, in a sense, we are all freaks in our own particular way. The jury is still out, however, about the exclusiveness of our particular gift. Until we can actually 'talk' with dolphins, other apes, and even cats and dogs, we can't gage for sure how intelligent they actually are. We may also discover that they have 'minds' more equal to our own that our egos are willing to now suspect.

      Is a lion tearing apart a lamb for food 'cruel'? Is it any more cruel than one person eating an apple that another person could have also eaten, or one company taking business away from another, benefiting one set of employees, and hurting the other set? One person becomes a rich woman because of her talent in business, driving other women to close their less successful businesses because these women did not have her same talent. Point is, we all need to survive and often that means that we need to struggle for limited resources. Perhaps even down to the struggle to find mates where being gay could be misunderstood by others as an unfair source of competi.tion. With this in mind what is commonly thought of as a struggle between 'good' and 'evil' becomes rather subjective in many cases, depending on how 'evil' someone's actions are for me personally, right?

      March 21, 2011 at 2:57 pm |
    • NL

      brad-
      "It was not religion that first suggested we use only 10%."
      Nor did science. I suspect that it sprang from the new age belief in the paranormal movement that was really active early in the last century.

      "I allow for the possibility that some part of us can exist outside of our wiring."
      So, what happens to somebody who suffers a major brain injury? Does their soul just lie dormant until the rest of their body dies. Is it already in heaven/hell? If a person's personality changes due to a tumor or drug use does that translate to an equal change in their soul, one that they will be judged by God for?

      As the article I shared with you states we may only understand about 10 percent of the brain. Of that 10 percent much of what we understand involves how our brains can distort reality and be fooled by illusions, and create ideas out of the imagination. I suspect strongly then that any 'feeling' that you may have that your mind can transcend your physical body, like a shaman believes he can, for example, is purely an illusion.

      March 21, 2011 at 3:13 pm |
    • Jay

      "Yes, the internet is right here. Do blindly believe everything the internet tells you?"

      –Not at all. But the most cursory search will reveal the preposterousness of the 10% idea. Science has never suggested that we only use 10% of our brains, any more than it said that honeybees can't fly or that swimming after eating will give you deadly cramps. These are urban legends, one of the many kinds of myths that we humans cling to irrationally.

      "Elsewhere, you state that you've read the bible four times and reject it because of God's cruelty. You are taking a literalist view of the bible – the same thing you probably accuse Christians doing. Live up to your own standards."

      –Sorry, this doesn't make any sense to me, so I can't respond to it other than to say that the cruelty of God doesn't depend on a literalist interpretation of the Bible. It is certainly a cruel and immoral book, but all I have to do is look around to see that every person I've ever met or heard of is more moral than a God who drowns children with tsunamis. I don't need to ponder the details of the Old Testament—all I need to postulate is that the horrors in the world around us occur with God's knowledge and consent.

      If you always get touchy when someone points out that you've made an obvious and easily-avoided mistake, the internet must be a pretty rough place for you.

      March 21, 2011 at 9:29 pm |
  8. anon

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=49VG92RueT4&w=640&h=390]

    March 21, 2011 at 12:31 pm |
  9. tallulah13

    Fredrika, please don't waste any time praying for me. I am very happy with my life. It took me a while, but I finally freed myself from the habit of belief I had gained from the culture I grew up in. I feel liberated, because I realized that my belief in a higher power was simply a child's fear of growing up. I am a happy adult now, dealing with my own problems and creating my own joys.

    My hope for you is that you open your mind to the wonder of the world. Put aside your bible for a moment and learn about the history of the universe and this planet from those who have dedicated their lives to studying those things, correcting and/or building on the knowledge of those who came before. I get such joy and wonder from learning, and I think if you open your mind to it, you could do the same.

    March 21, 2011 at 12:25 pm |
  10. Mercy

    The rapid succession of recent global catastrophes should give cause for all thinking (and believing) persons to pause think, and reflect. As for me I believe in the total message of bible, That, these catastrophes are going to increase and worsen so that per chance a loving God can get the attention and draw his creation back to Him instead of them ending up in eternal damnation. But reading these message boards makes me understand Revealation 16; especially...v11 'and cursed the God of heaven because of their pains and sores but they refused to repent of what they had done'.... v21 'from the sky huge hailstones of about 100 pounds each fell upon men. And they cursed God on account of the plague of hail'....So we can warn people till we are blue in the face and some people will still not listen, hiding behind high-minded arguments. But who knows.. maybe one will listen and hear....

    March 21, 2011 at 12:04 pm |
    • Amyjo

      check out http://www.jamesbouvier.com!!

      March 21, 2011 at 1:00 pm |
  11. Troll

    Derp...Oh lordy lordy. For I have seen the herpty light. Godf is real herpa derpa.

    ^Okay, now look at all the serious religious nutjobs on here. Look familiar? Well that's because religion is the single largest troll in the history of civilization. You kids are losers. Go Atheists.

    March 21, 2011 at 11:54 am |
  12. aginghippy

    It's times like this that I am especially glad to be an atheist. I don't have to waste a single minute of my day wondering why some egomaniacal, ill-tempered, vengeful skydaddy makes a sudden decision to wipe out thousands of people. Perhaps all of the people of different religions should be debating whose god is responsible for this incident. Was it the Christian God (or is he called Jehovah?), Allah, Krishna, Brahman, Jah or Shiva? Perhaps it is one of the ancient Greek or Roman Gods: Zeus, Poseidon, Ceres or Neptune?
    Of course the Christians will say that any god other than theirs is a myth. Right back at you!

    March 21, 2011 at 11:53 am |
  13. Valdemir

    Which death causes a family more suffering: one caused by a tsunami, a car crash or a desease? In fact, death will always exist and make us suffer for the ones we love and will never have by our side again. Our role is to cry with those who are crying, so that we will be laughing together again, one day. If you believe in God, like I do, stop using your time to answer questions. Pray for the families who have lost beloved ones and help through any other ways that you can. God bless you all!

    March 21, 2011 at 11:52 am |
  14. Alan

    Ask an eager young child what happens when a drinking glass is dropped on a hard floor and she will answer correctly. Ask her to explain why and she will give you a silly, irrational, or insufficient answer.

    March 21, 2011 at 11:47 am |
  15. anon

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j7yNwEDtqjA&w=640&h=390]
    IF GOD EXIST WHY IS THERE EVIL IN THE WORLD??!!!!!

    March 21, 2011 at 11:46 am |
    • Observer

      That was a pathetically weak argument. It's ridiculous to claim that it takes a God to tell people what's right and wrong. People can figure that out for themselves. Atheists certainly have morals like other people. The pure nonsense here is shown by all the civilizations that were not based on God and yet were not composed of wild animals.

      March 21, 2011 at 12:08 pm |
    • TruthintheBible

      Because God gave man freewill:

      "I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live,"

      Deuteronomy 30:19

      Unfortunately, man sought out many inventions like the "Flying Spaghetti Monster" of the Atheists and worshipping of graven images by the Catholics; this, despite the fact that God created man upright:

      "This only have I found:
      God made mankind upright,
      but men have gone in search of many schemes.”

      Ecclesiastes 7:29

      May I also make a correction on the statement of the other blogger that Atheists may have morals of their own. Such statement may hold true if, we now define "morals" to also include perversion and wickedness. Someone who does not acknowledge that there is a God is always toward doing whatever he/ she pleases, even if such act is wrong and immoral.

      "The fool says in his heart, "There is no God."
      They are corrupt, doing abominable iniquity;
      there is none who does good."

      Psalms 53:1

      March 22, 2011 at 7:45 am |
  16. anon

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YgJmsK2s0uI&w=640&h=390]
    HOW DO WE KNOW GOD EXIST??!!!!

    March 21, 2011 at 11:44 am |
    • TruthintheBible

      Look at yourself and look around you and think, "Can I even create a bonfire whose flame may endure billions of years like our sun, and other stars, does?". Look around you and know that even if you are the most intelligent of all creatures in this earth, you will never know what God knows.

      "For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse."

      Romans 1:19-20

      We know that there is a better place called heaven because we have witnessed how astounding most places on earth are. We know deep inside us that there is a place where sorrows end, where weeping will be taken away by God, because we have experienced how it is to be happy. The measure of the things unseen are the things seen themselves. And these unseen things will not end. You just have to learn how to look beyond what is seen.

      "as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal."

      II Corinthians 4:18

      May God bless you my friend..

      March 22, 2011 at 7:28 am |
  17. john316

    I like how the religious somehow separate God from nature..........it makes things much easier to hype....so I'm guessing we are to assume that God did not create nature and has no control over it? Does that make sense? Or did he just put all the pieces of the puzzle out there and sit back and watch to see what happens....does that sound like an intelligent being to you ...or a beiing just having some fun with his toys......or maybe there is no being who would participate in such nonsense.....I'm guessing the latter.....

    March 21, 2011 at 11:41 am |
  18. macuy

    In the Christian religion, we believe we are made in the image and likeness of God. Therefore acts of compassion, sympathy, generosity, concern and empathy makes the image of God apparent to all. When we speak words of support and encouragement we make God heard. God created man in his imaged. God is good. Therefore, all mankind is inherently good.

    March 21, 2011 at 11:38 am |
  19. Paul

    My favorite bible passage is from the book of Jack. When he trades his cow for some beans that he plants and miraculously grow up to the heavens. It has a happy ending even though he steals and kills while he's up there.

    March 21, 2011 at 11:37 am |
    • Hal

      HA HA HA HA!! That too is my favorite passage!

      March 21, 2011 at 11:39 am |
    • txhumminbird

      LOL...too funny! As John Prine sings "your flag decal won't get you into heaven anymore"

      March 21, 2011 at 12:20 pm |
  20. Hal

    When we say "God": Whose God? The Christian "God"? Because apparently only Christians have the RIGHT God!

    March 21, 2011 at 11:37 am |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.