By John Blake, CNN
(CNN) –True love doesn’t wait after all.
That’s the implication in the upcoming October issue of an evangelical magazine that claims that young, unmarried Christians are having premarital sex almost as much as their non-Christian peers.
The article in Relevant magazine, entitled “(Almost) Everyone’s Doing It,” cited several studies examining the sexual activity of single Christians. One of the biggest surprises was a December 2009 study, conducted by the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, which included information on sexual activity.
While the study’s primary report did not explore religion, some additional analysis focusing on sexual activity and religious identification yielded this result: 80 percent of unmarried evangelical young adults (18 to 29) said that they have had sex - slightly less than 88 percent of unmarried adults, according to the teen pregnancy prevention organization.
The article highlights what challenges abstinence movements face. Movements such as “True Love Waits,” encourage teens to wear purity rings, sign virginity pledges and pledge chastity during public ceremonies.
Yet many of these Christian youths eventually abandon their purity pledges, Relevant’s Tyler Charles concludes in the article. Tyler talked to people like “Maria,” an evangelical woman who said she wanted to wait until marriage to have sex.
CNN's Belief Blog – all the faith angles to the day's top stories
But she said she started having sex with her college boyfriend when she turned 20 because nearly everyone, even most of her Christian friends, were having sex.
It seemed everyone in my life, older and younger, had “done it.” In fact, I waited longer than most people I knew and longer than both of my sisters, even though we were all Christians and came from a good home.
Relevant theorizes about why it’s so hard for so many young Christians to wait, including the saturation of sex in popular culture, the prevalence of pornography and a popular “do what feels good philosophy.”
Yet the article also asks a question that rarely comes up in discussions about abstinence movement. Relevant notes that in biblical times, people married earlier. The average age for marriage has been increasing in the U.S for the last 40 years.
Today, it’s not unusual to meet a Christian who is single at 30 - or 40 or 50, for that matter. So what do you tell them? Keep waiting?
Scot McKnight, author of “The Jesus Creed,” and "One.Faith: Jesus Calls, We Follow," acknowledges that young, single Christians face temptations that their counterparts in the biblical age didn’t face.
He tells Relevant:
Sociologically speaking, the one big difference – and it’s monstrous – between the biblical teaching and our culture is the arranged marriages of very young people. If you get married when you’re 13, you don’t have 15 years of temptation.
So what should a Christian parent or youth pastor do? How do they convince more young Christians to wait until marriage, or should they stop even trying?
Religion is just enslavement of the mind, in a guise that it is doing you good.
Hello Frank Burnsf
It’s true that most religions have not been an example for many of us. I can honestly say that there is a lot of hypocrisy in most of them and many of them are being unmasked of all of their falsehood. The Bible warns us that there would be “false prophets that come to you in sheep’s covering, but inside they are ravenous wolves.” (Matthew 7:15) This applies to small or large religious organizations or whether it was founded centuries ago or just began. We cannot trust a religious organization just because it may have a long history of existence. Our Lord Jesus Christ conflicted with Judaism and it was a religion that had many years of existence. So what can we learn from this? It’s Bible principles that we should adhere ourselves to; not to religion. Though many may not like the laws of God but there are reasons for them. One of them is clearly written that we should refrain from fornication. (1 Corinthians 6:9, 10, 18; 7:2; 10:8; Galatians 5:19) If we look at history those that practice such sins have caused hardship amongst themselves; for example: venereal diseases, children without parents, etc. It’s obvious that Jehovah God does not want for his children to suffer and is why he has come up with his laws for our own protection. Please don’t be misled by those that speak without proving it to you with the Bible. This is why it’s important that we read our Bible daily.
Man is that he may know Joy, the Joy that comes through keeping the commandments.
Obviously young Christians should be forced to marry at the same age they were during biblical times. Otherwise they're heathens.
Everyone...watch this!!! and share...you wont regrett it!!! It will rock your world! let me know what you think...young children may not be ready to view certain images just to let you know.
Did it mention that Hitler was raised as a Catholic and believed in God?
he was, he said he believed in Jesus Christ, it does mention it.
It's good that they were so honest.
hitler was on crack
Dude this is awesome!
Then again, I'm always one for stirring things up a bit ;)
I'd like to hear what people have to say on the articles topic of "why young Christians aren't waiting". I find this an interesting failure that seems to be ignored by the Christian community.
We already know 75% of Christian teens that graduate from a non Christian college do not come back to church. We do not know if or when they will return but, it says something. Pastors are aware of the trend and there seem to be lots of possible reasons. These numbers include Catholics hit hard on many fronts.
It may not be a bad thing. All societies go through cycles, we are at the end of that period when a successful nation gets fat. We then get taken over from within or by the outside sliding back into some hard line dictatorship. After a great deal of pain we will again head towards some degree of freedom. Is this what the anti God forces are pushing for?
"We already know 75% of Christian teens that graduate from a non Christian college do not come back to church."
This may be the result of a liberal education where people are encouraged to think for themselves.
The reality of the prevalence of sins within the Christian Church should be critically evaluated. We find that within every religion upon our planet that there are deviants to the social norms which each faith tradition attempts to maintain. The prevalence of the Christian Church's sinful behaviors is not due to a refutation of their faith, but merely a lack of proper doctrinal education. It is the lack of discipline and consistent regurgitation of the basic messages that have come off so negatively. The true response of the Christian Church should be to call for a re-evaluation of the audience which the preachers, pastors, and theologians are attempting to meet. It is the disconnect between the trained disciple and the un-trained disciple that becomes the biggest hinderance towards any correct, doctrinal praxis.
I doubt you're able to 'think' at all. But you have every right to call it what you wish.
Observer you have a lot of hot air and empty rhetoric. You claim to be an agnostic. Do you know what that means? Im not sure you do. But what it means to me is that you like to play both sides of the field without weighing the evidence and making a committment to one or another. Even Christopher Hitchens laughs at your kind because you're wish washy and stand for nothing. You know verses from the Bible but you don't know the Bible or the story it tells. Keep pretending to live in your little world where there is no consequence for seeking the God that created you.
You obviously are out of facts for rebuttal so you have resorted to insults. Try again with some FACTS.
So stating the FACT that neither believers nor atheists can prove their point makes me "wish washy and stand for nothing"? LOL. Guess again.
What an amazing concept...nothing exists unless I see it with my own two eyes. So atoms didn't exist prior to humans FINDING what God had already created. And your right, there is no way of knowing God exists. Unless that God has chosen to reveal himself, which he has through nature, scripture, Christ, and the people who have actually taken the time to seek him instead of convincing themselves that either God didn't exist or there is just no way of finding out. I think I would rather follow a truth that has transforming power and has proven itself in my life than some guy who a few decades old.
Sorry Observer. You have found your wait out of the argument because you stand for nothing. You believe in nothing. No one wants to follow that kind of guy because you have no answers. What do you say to the person who you telll God might exist? "Well he might but don't bother looking for him." LOL! Your the guy people turn to and ask, "What should we do?" Uhm...nothing I guess, well I just don't know. I give atheists credit for seeking and coming up with a conclusion or a faith person for doing the same, but guys a like you have little value in their rhetoric. Call it what you want ad hominem or not but you still stand for nothing LOL!!!
If God ACTUALLY revealed himself, this would not be a discussion and there wouldn't be any atheists. Again, he could easily take 5 seconds to announce "I am God. Follow the Bible". It's kind of a trivial task for him when compared to flying in hundreds of thousands of animals and food for months on a boat ride. It would end the discussion and save billions of lives. FIVE SECONDS.
Your argument about a cause for the existence of atoms, etc. even if true PROVES NOTHING about the existence of God. A committee of zombies might have created the universe for all you can PROVE.
NO argument here will prove or disprove the existence of God. As I stated to fred, my arguments here are to get hypocritical believers to have a more open mind when they use their religion as an excuse to condemn other people and deny them equal rights.
@ JeremyJK and Observer et al,,,
Look you two, Did not Christ Jesus himself say that our world is not and I repeat, is not the kingdom of God? Did He not also say to seek first the Kingdom of God? Go seek it out and then when ya'll find it, we all 3 can then talk. Until then, quit bickering about God showing or not showing Himself to us, a people that do not live within the Kingdom of God!
I must a s s u m e that the JK stands for just kidding, right? Otherwise, you would just be confirming what any sane person knows by reading your statements, that you are a moron.
"You believe in nothing. No one wants to follow that kind of guy because you have no answers." This shows how little you understand about the word Agnostic. A simple Wiki search would have garnered you far more understanding – "Agnosticism is the view that the truth value of certain claims—especially claims about the existence or non-existence of any deity, but also other religious and metaphysical claims—is unknown or unknowable." (wiki) This is not a belief in nothing, nor a block preventing answers, it's merely a recognition that anyone who has decided there is or is not a God is relying on nothing but faith to sustain that belief since there is NO definable proof either way.
I'm glad you have chosen your path and trust the men who led you down it, but to get angry at someone else just for waving to you and pointing out that there is no path and we are all just meandering along the same plane of existence is more than a little ignorant.
Look you two, Did not Christ Jesus himself say that our world is not and I repeat, is not the kingdom of God? Did He not also say to seek first the Kingdom of God? Go seek it out and then when ya'll find it, we all 3 can then talk. Until then, quit talking about God showing or not showing Himself to us, a people that do not live within the Kingdom of God!
You are certainly welcome to your OPINION. Just like ours, there is no proof for any side. I could read the Star Wars Trilogy and quote wisdom from Yoda and swear it's true because my book says so.
@ Observer,,, et al,,,
A 2,000 plus year old book does not a quite young Star Wars Saga make! Although I am in league with the Force in that "midichlorians" are beings that inhabit our bodies as the Saga does so state. Lucas and I are one! :-)
Even if we hypothesize that the universe was created by something, that in no way proves the existence of God. The source could have been a committee of zombies for all we know. There is ZERO validation there for the existence of a single God from the Bible.
Still looking for God to prove himself to you? Your knowledge of the Bible is greater than mine so you know He never shows himself to those who demand a sign (except for the sign of Jonah 3 days in the belly of the Fish). Just as Ninivah heard and repented have you not heard the voice of Jesus..............I know my sheep and they hear my voice?
Like EVERYONE else, I can neither prove nor disprove the existence of God. My goal is to try to give Christians something to think about when so many hypocritically use the Bible as an excuse to condemn others and deny equal rights.
Well, you do know the Bible inside and out, do you believe in the God of the Bible?
"The source could have been a committee of zombies"
I'm pretty sure it would be a "Zeal of Zombies". Either that or a Bloat of Zombies...
I am certainly not an expert on the Bible. I would never claim to be.
Since no one can prove nor disprove the existence of God, I am an agnostic. Both the believers and the atheists could be wrong. There may be a God, but one who, for instance, is far more like the peaceful Jesus in the Bible than the mass-killing God in the Bible.
Based on the condition of the world, I'll still vote for it being a committee.
I only know God as He revealed himself through the Bible. The Bible is the story of God redeeming a people for Himself. This process has taken generations and generations. God as He has revealed Himself gives me a good picture of all other gods and the purpose of our existence. I like this God. I know I should say love but, I still have a hang up using that word. The most important being in my life at the moment.
Zombie does not describe this being very well as I can chock a zombie or perhaps kill one with a wooden cross or something.
Everyone should be free to choose whatever religion they want to practice in their homes or places of worship as long as they don't infringe on rights for other people. You seem to be an honest, sincere person and I respect you for that. Your mind is more open than that of many believers.
My thoughts can be somewhat summed up as: if your religion has made your life better, then don't use it to make someone's life worse.
@fred – "Still looking for God to prove himself to you?" It's funny how many Christians have this view, and look with disdain on anyone who would question their God regardless of the fact that there is absolutely zero evidence that not only your God exists, but that any god's exist. To me this is much like the sneers that were thrown at anyone who did not believe the world was flat at a time when that was the fashionable belief, and one backed by the Holy Church who supposedly got it's info on how flat the earth was from the divine creator of said flat world. And the proof they use to make the claim is the same as Christians use today to prove God. They said "Just look around you, it's obvious that we don't live on the side of a ball where we would fall off, duh!!" or the more recent "Just look around you at the complexity of life, this obviously means there is an infinitely more complex being that always existed outside our time/space that created it all, duh!!" Sometimes I do think back with fondness when such simple answers took care of my complex questions, no need for science when you add a "duh!!" to the end.
@fred – "Zombie does not describe this being very well as I can chock a zombie or perhaps kill one with a wooden cross or something." lol
Anyone else see the problem with this statement? So you can choke a zombie eh? You went to Zombie med school and learned their anatomy and that they require air to function I guess? Or that they will have pain inflicted by a wooden letter "T"? I'm glad it seems you have frequented enough movies to think you will be able to fight your non-existent zombie with your non-existent holy power of a lower case t.
@Observer – How about a "congress of zombies"? Here are a few more fun collectives:
shrewdness of apes
sleuth of bears
lodge of beavers (sounds like something you might find in Nevada...)
dissimulation of birds
rabble of butterflies
congregation of crocodiles
storytelling of crows
murder of crows
convocation of eagles
horde of hamsters
p r i c k l e of hedgehogs
sneak of weasels
shiver of shark
and my personal favorite:
implausibility of gnus
You're right. A "congress of zombies" sounds the best to me.
Thanks for your contribution. I have collected hundreds of facts on what I call "Weird Common Words" for years and have thought about publishing them. You have supplied some more.
Jesus, the Holy Spirit and God are one. Backing up a few thousand years I assume mans thinking or thinking process was not as evolved as it is today or will be down the road. Would these old guys have the ability to comprehend the deep attributes of God as expressed in Jesus? I think not. God revealed Himself in fire, earthquakes, thunder and normally high on a mountain top. The Joe and the volcano type of human could grasp this. The chosen ones whom the Bible chronicles and addresses could but grasp rituals (blood sacrifice and the like) to honor this God. Then a promised land (a physical understandable place) of milk and honey could be understood. God shows them how to get there and of course they reject Gods ways. Time and time again they do not fear God and reject Him. It did not matter how horrible the consequence for this rejection was shown to them. These examples of floods and violent killings of the ungodly would not make a lasting impression and only served for the temporary correction of a few. From Adam to Jesus we see only a small remnant of the chosen being carried through by Gods strength alone. That is the God of the old testament and the people of old. None of these old guys could say God did not make himself clear as to fear God, obey God and worship God. Man revealed himself also by rejecting God, discounting His resolve and refusal to worship / love God .
Man and civilization finally “evolved” to the point where God could be revealed in Christ. Love God, love neighbor, love your enemy. Becoming one with Christ in mind, body and spirit we acknowledge our sin, repent and ask for forgiveness. Those who believe are now back at the same point as the beginning of the Old Testament. We are one with God in that perfect place He prepared for us.
Note the same loving God who desires that perfect existence for man throughout eternity. Since Christ we can speak of what is righteous anger/ wrath of God and how it relates to Gods perfect Justice. 3,400 years ago that would never make sense to most so God demonstrated it physically in Nature and even on humans (from adults to babies) whether literal or metaphor matters not. Knowing Gods loving nature this was for the best. Christ could never be one with the Father if this was not the case and certainly would not reveal a false impression of God to us.
"God revealed Himself in fire, earthquakes, thunder and normally high on a mountain top." I might reveal myself to if I was high and on a mountain top...
check out rinkworks.com/words/collective for more
Thanks. users.tinyonline.co.uk/gswithenbank/collnoun.htm has a load of plural words, too. English is batty.
Ok, you have a better handle on zombies that I do.
But, since we are fact checking keep in mind it was Isaiah in 750 BC that said the earth is a sphere. Much latter science said it was flat. Now, the scientist may have been paid off by the church back then. Today we have scientists’ being paid off by our secular government to promote global warming as the fault of big bad oil companies. Keep in mind we need god types running around and non god types running around to keep us from running off the cliff.
So let's give a cheer to Christians and agnostics everywhere !
@fred – " keep in mind it was Isaiah in 750 BC that said the earth is a sphere." Try fact checking again and you might get it right eventually. You would be right if the word that was translated sphere actually meant "sphere" to ancient Israelites. The word is a translation of a Hebrew word that meant compass, a tool used to draw a circle, but had no spherical context at that time. So keep at it fred! Don't give up! You're bound to get it right some day!!
Isaiah 11:12 “And He will lift up a standard for the nations And assemble the banished ones of Israel, And will gather the dispersed of Judah From the four corners of the earth.”
Isaiah 40:22 “God sits above the circle of the earth.”
So, I was playing a beatle album backwards for encouragement when I noticed you spelled your name backwards. duh
So why the tribute to an old Paul Newman movie in your last word or was it for Housing and Urban Development? :)
Jesus was 2,000 years ahead of hud and I am looking forward to my new diggs. "In my Fathers house are many rooms I have gone before you to prepare a room. If it were not so I would tell you.
Make the most out of your current "digs". There are an incredible amount of things to see, do, and learn. Enjoy.
"and my personal favorite: implausibility of gnus"
That's not really new is it? I've always heard that no gnus is good news.
Don't listen to the main stream media, get it all at Fox Gnus!! They always have good gnus!!
Well Rick could you have created this? Have you created anything? Not made but created. Has any human created anything? No! We merely find and discover what God has already created. Wow a scientist finds an atom. "Good job mister scientist." Where did that atom come from? It came from something more powerful than humans. And there seems to be a degree of order. So we are dealing with an intelligent being, more intelligent than us. Is this being silent? Or does he communicate and reveal himself? He is trying to reveal himself. How? Through creation, humans, scripture, but most of all through Jesus Christ.
Your view that this being is trying to reveal himself, and the nature of this being is based on your religious views. This is fine for those who believe it, not it is an opinion nonetheless
What makes the "scripture" that you believe in more valid than the "scripture" of other beliefs?
The scripture I believe in has a solid worldview that explains things far better than any other religion or ideology.
It is ancient and yet applicable to contemporary life and has withstood the test of time.
It has been treasured and handed down from one generation to the next even in the face of much danger.
I have experienced its transforming power in my life and seen it work powerfully in the lives of individuals I know who were functioning atheists, murderers, and even jolly old joes who have lived nothing but a good life and have nothing to be sorry about, yet turned to God and were still transformed.
God doesn't play by your rules but his. He doesn't show himself to arrogant slugs who think they are smarter and more powerful than he is anyhow. He reveals himself to the humble and the seekers on his terms. Seek and you will find is the name of the game. If you were to set aside this ignorance you choose you would indeed find him. But I can imagine you will allow your pride to be your master and you its slave and continue to resist God.
Any pragmatist that would seek would indeed experience God.
"Any pragmatist that would seek would indeed experience God."
Why would a pragmatist believe in talking serpents and unicorns?
Arrogant slugs? Sounds like a self-assessment, Jeremy.
And which god they experience depends a great deal on the culture in which they were raised.
"The scripture I believe in has a solid worldview that explains things far better than any other religion or ideology."
Genesis is NOT a solid worldview and explains nothing at all.
It is ancient and yet applicable to contemporary life and has withstood the test of time.
The same can be said of the Epic of Gilgamesh, which predates your mythology by thousands of years.
Given that you're absolutely sure of the superiority of your book over all the others, can I as.sume that you've studied Tanakh, Talmud, Midrash, Quran, Sunnah, Nahjul Balagha, Avesta, Vedas, Upanisahds, Bhagavad Gita, Puranas, Tantras, Sutras, Vachanas, Adi Granth, Purvas, Samayasara, Niyamasara, Pravacanasara, and Pancastikaya; Anupreksa; Samadhishataka of Pujyapada; Tattvarthasutra of Umasvati, Tattvarthasutra, Pali Tripitaka, Jataka,, Visuddimagga, Tripitaka, Lotus Sutra, Garland Sutra, Analects; the Great Learning; the Doctrine of the Mean; the Mencius, Tao Te Ching, Chuang-tzu, Kojiki, Nihon Shoki, K-oki, Ofudesaki, Mikagura-uta, Michi-no-Shiori, Johrei, Goseigen, Netarean Shower of Holy Doctrines, Chun Boo Kyung, Kitab-i-Iqan, Epistle to the Son of the Wolf, Book of Mormon, Dianetics, and Revelation X?
If you haven't read the above Holy Books, how can you dismiss them out of hand?
why aren't young people in the church "waiting"? Umm... it's called worldliness creeping into the church?
This is why the apostle Paul wrote to the Corinthian church. Christ, nor his message, is not swayed by popular opinion or what is thought to be cool. He doesn't change based on the whims of man.
My husband and I both waited until we were married. I was 27 and he was 29. It was not always easy but certainly worth the wait. I would not trade the intimacy that we have now for anything. I never have to wonder if he's thinking of another woman or if someone else was "better" in bed. We've developed this relationship together and it's incredible to have no hurt or loss associated with it. I would encourage those of you still "waiting" to continue to ignore what pop culture and those around you are telling you. Be true to yourself and you God and your will reap the rewards later.
Well said Angela!!! Its refreshing to hear a story like that.
Although I'm happy you're in a good relationship, I am not sure that intimacy with someone else prior to marriage in any way takes away from the bond one can develop in a marriage. Fears of being better or worse in bed are quite easily gotten over when one is in a loving relationship, and broken hearts heal.
Wow, that is the most naive thing I've ever read.
I think the wisdom in God's plan to wait until marriage is to save us from the heartache and need for that healing process. There is also a peace and joy that comes from the fact that you are sharing something special with one person on this planet that you will never share with anyone else. Thats not to say there cant be great intimacy in a marrage otherwise or healing, but its is because of God's great love for us that he offers a better plan.
How does this mean he is not thinking of other women?
Angela like you I am also waiting but I am finding it very frusterating to meet so many guys who haven't waited or won;t even date me because I won't do it when they want to it isn't even just a question religeon it is also like u say a sense of intimacy that no one gets anymore.....I really am over the lies and crap....But I am with you and more people should hear stories like that from people like yourselves.....
I love the people who bash christians for not being perfect. I love the people who bash christians because they only understand 1/10th of the belief system. As a well educated, well versed christian, I find the ignorance of their statements laughable. "you only have a set amount of time to find god." Yes, it's true. However, if you've ever heard of the millenium, it's understandable why you only have this much time to find god. The answers are all in the scriptures, one only needs the desire to read and understand. However, it is human nature to fear what we do not understand, so in that respect I understand the hatred toward religion.
They bash Christians because they are trying to convince themselves that they are okay in rejecting God. They are trying to find comfort in numbers. The truth of the matter is: it takes more faith to believe in no deity that is the artificer of all things than it takes to believe in a deity. They laugh at us for saying God has no beginning but is eternal, yet they claim the same about the universe (preexistent matter). Really? Or better yet, that the universe came into existence ex nihilo. Matter came from No Matter. Wow that's bright. There is no question if there is a God, the question is: did God choose to reveal himself? As Christians we say YES!
JeremyJK: And Christians don't find comfort in numbers?
Rick you're a master at missing the argument and focusing on side topics. Yes we find comfort in our community. But it seems to me that if you guys actually believed in the non-existence of God, you would be at peace about it and wouldn't need to come on blogs like this to interact with people of faith. Nor would you need to find councilation in other atheists. But the fact of the matter is you do believe, you have no choice, its staring you in the face everyday. You can't account for existence of anything without a deity of some sort.
JeremyJK: Tell me how you make the leap from a creator to a "god". Something created us, so He/She/It is the judge of human actions? How does one make that leap of logic?
Jeremy: If you were comfortable with your faith, why are you here?
What exactly is staring me in the face? That many people attribute the words of bronze age sheepherders to a deity?
I am here because this is a faith blog Rick. We commune because we are told to in scripture. In our community we are strong and are taught that we need each other. We are taught that when we gather Christ is there in our presence. We commune because that is what the Church does and has always done.
Fair enough. Now tell me how you make the leap from a creator to a judge of human interaction.
So God made matter from no matter. As you stated, "Matter came from No Matter. Wow that's bright.". Ooops!
Yes Observer! I think you got it Ace. A deity is the only logical answer. God is incorporeal and created matter. That makes sense. what doesnt make sense is that matter created itself or came from nothing. Have you ever seen such a thing. Can science support that? No not even with its own laws. If you want to believe such a thing go ahead. If you want to believe that or perhaps the universe was created by your committee of zombies, be my guest. But God did choose to reveal himself. But you choose to ignore it. You choose to put so much weight in your short little life, on a little planet out in the middle of no where. You are a speck on that planet with a brain smaller than a watermelon. Im not impressed.
Your contempt for liberals and those against religion is poorly masked. True there are some who do truly hate religion, perhaps because of things like, hmmmm, the Crusades, the Conquistadores, Aryans, and things like that. They can be just as ignorant as the people they bash. However, most people who've actually seen both sides and taken time to read and form opinions generally are turned off by religion. Their beef is justified. But remember it's against "religion" not God or Jesus. American evangelism is what most people have a problem with. You say all the answers can be found in scripture, and that's great, truly. Whenever another human has found literature that inspires them to become a better person that's a good thing. But why should you assume that the conclusions you've drawn from the Bible are the same conclusions everyone else has? This is what's truly incendiary about modern Christians, you go into conversations thinking you already have the answers. Of course you always cite the Bible, the book that has the "answers". You take those answers and cling to them like they are set in stone. You don't think any of the messages or lessons taught in the Bible are context sensitive. American Christianity is based on motivating people to believe uniformly. Jesus did not travel the middle east telling people what to believe, he showed them HOW TO LIVE. He gave people an example to follow, not words to get caught up with.
"As a well educated, well versed christian, I find the ignorance of their statements laughable".
-- The prefacing of this statement alone is beyond arrogant. It reminds me of all those times in the Bible where Jesus laughed at non-believers, oh, wait..... no he didn't, he forgave them and befriended them (see tax collector, Magdalen, et al). You just completely missed His point. This could almost be a word-for-word quote of a Pharisee from the Bible. Remember the Pharisees?
"The answers are all in the scriptures, one only needs the desire to read and understand."
-– What about high school or college English class when you read the classics and then discuss and debate what the author meant? Remember that? Remember how different people thought different things ? Well now it's a different book, but people still have their own opinions. Only this book has multiple authors, was compiled by a Roman emperor desperate for religious unity during his reign, and has many books written decades after the time of Jesus, most of which were political allegories. Moreover, if you're reading yours in English, you're reading translations from Greek transcriptions of events that took place in Aramaic. So you have to excuse the "ignorant" folks who think they need other sources of information before they form their opinions.
"However, it is human nature to fear what we do not understand,...."
-– Ah yes, what a beautifully smug way to group all "anti-religious" people together. We just don't understand. We're just not as smart as those who've chosen American Christianity. Try this. NOBODY understands! The only difference is that liberal minded folk are ok with not understanding. There are still big questions out there that we will never understand, and that's fine. Liberal minded folk think that all the answers to life probably can't be found in one book. American Christians think the answers are the same as they were 2000 years ago, and that all who want in the club have to believe the same. This is the isolationist, morally superior stance that American Christianity has endorsed from the get go and it's why level-headed people don't go to church anymore and it's why the church (notice I didn't say spirituality) is dying too. It's not Jesus, it's his fan club that bothers me. My advice, read the Quran, read some Dante, read some C.S. Lewis, read the Dao, read some Joseph Campbell and then reevaluate.
"But God did choose to reveal himself."
Not exactly, Ace. There is zero proof. It would be easy to do for God. Christian athletes constantly assure us that God watches their games and decides whether to answer the prayers of the Christians on offense or the Christians on defense. Certainly God could take five seconds between plays to make an announcement to the world saying something like "This is God. Obey my Bible". FIVE SECONDS and the controversy would be over and BILLIONS of people would be saved.
"You choose to put so much weight in your short little life, on a little planet out in the middle of no where. You are a speck on that planet with a brain smaller than a watermelon."
Don't Christians believe that they are the predilect object of Creation, made in God's own image?
Popular culture romanticizes fornication. Young Christians must have their mids "set like a flint" to resist the temptation to fornicate.
Abstinence will prevent unplanned preganancies and the transmission of STDs. Support young Christians intheir quest to remain pure until marriage.
Good Grief.....that about covers it......
As a truely commited christian female myself, i'm waiting. I have a purity ring that emphasizes this, and i'm not going to say that it's so easy because I have Jesus because it truely isn't, but that is why I must rely on God for the comfort and encouragement that my future husband would give me. But until then I will wait until that day comes.
Good job! Don't let people talk you out of waiting either. What they decided to do, is their choice, you stand by yours. My wife and I waited for each other. And it's made our intimate relations (general too) so beautiful. My wife has repeatedly expressed that she loves that she's the only girl I've been with, and that it makes her feel beautiful and special. And the feeling is mutual. I feel like a million dollars every time I'm with her. It's become something very sacred and special to us. So, keep waiting. Definitely worth it!
I waited till I was 27, my wife too, she was 26 when we got married. We've been married for 13 great years now. If I had to do it all over again I would wait again.. Neither of us have to worry about broken relationships, herpes, genital warts or even cold sores. We enjoy one another and we are missing nothing. The reason God gave us the commandments is because it's best for us.
That's Awesome!!! Its worth the wait! My wife and I both waited and we were 22 years old when we got married! We grew up in the church and had been serving God and following his principles most of our life...As you stated it was difficult at times...but now when we look back we thank God for his grace and allowing us to make it...b/c its worth it!!! Be encouraged! your future husband and kids to come will be glad you took a stand!
@ Lindsey...That's Awesome!!! Its worth the wait! My wife and I both waited and we were 22 years old when we got married! We grew up in the church and had been serving God and following his principles most of our life...As you stated it was difficult at times...but now when we look back we thank God for his grace and allowing us to make it...b/c its worth it!!! Be encouraged! your future husband and kids to come will be glad you took a stand!
Christianity does not mean you are perfect – it means you need a savior.
We are all born in sin. That sin has separated us from God, our creator. When you accept Christ, you accept forgiveness, and a way to God through the Holy Spirit.
It does not mean that you are perfect when you believe. It means you know you are not perfect.
We all strive to live by His word, but if you cannot realize you are a sinner till you die and that you need His sacrifice to cover your sins everyday then you just don't get it.
We are not hypocrites! We have just found peace and understanding.
Any Christian who judges you and says you are going to Hell because of your actions IS WRONG! Those who are separated from God will not enter into heaven.
Read His word, search yourself and make up your own mind based on your heart and not the misconceptions.
I bet all you non-believers are going to love this post, so I'm signing off now. You can sit in your own negativity.
nice story, god is real.
Well put. I recognize a real Christian when I hear one. Church is supposed to be full of sinners.
Oh Lordy Jesus help us!!!!!! We're all going to hell in a hand basket.
"There was only ever one Christian, and that God we crucified him before things could get much out of hand." Mark Twain
so Jesus had an infatuation with 1 woman. On top of that he spent a fair amount of time with "unclean" women alone...hmmm sounds like he was just like every other man to me.
Keep up the hypocrisy Christians! That's what you're best at!!
You only have hypocrisy when someone shares their personal beliefs and values. If they don't stand for anything its hard to be a hypocrite. So unless you have no back bone... Christian or Not every human has been a hypocrite as some point in their life.
Christian youth aren't waiting because they aren't hearing Jesus' words from their pastors:
"If ye love me, keep my commandments."
Pastors have painted themselves so far into the "faith alone" corner that there is no room at all for the commandments of Jesus Christ.
Here's another quandary: Are all of these Christian youth "saved?" Or are they kidding themselves?
There is a lot of trouble for "confession alone" theology.
And one more point about heaven and hell. Hell must have tons more room because only 20% of the world's population is Christian. Somewhere (in hell I can only presume) are billions of buddists who never in their life have hurt a fly but yet just because they don't believe that Jesus Christ is the world's saviour, they are therefore in hell. Note to the Dalai Lama, "You're screwed. See you in hell."
Yeah, actually I never got into the fanatic Christian thing either. I believe in Christ, but I believe in the Christ who was kind to Samaritans (even though they believed differently, and taught everyone not to "judge others") Ironically enough the only people Christ openly condemned were the self-righteous pharisees and hypocrites.... the accepted "religious authorities" of his day so to to speak.
I actually find Christ to be in many ways the quintessential Taoist sage (as described in the DaoDeJing) as well as a proponent of the 8-fold path of Buddhism. He certainly taught a form of Karma and Dharma, so to speak. I think if people could stop pointing fingers we could see how similar our beliefs really are.
Speaking as an outsider, Christians make up about 33% of the Earth's population. Islam is close behind at 31%.
You can still be a Christian and just not believe in Hell. I believe in a lot that Christianity has to offer, but also believe that the search for God is continuous and does not end at death. Its hard to believe that you only have a set amount of time to find God or you lose. Sounds so trivial and quite frankly I would rather have not existed if that is the meaning to life.
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.