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My Take: Is Tim Tebow performing miracles?
Tim Tebow’s penchant for kneeling in prayer has birthed a new word: Tebowing.
November 29th, 2011
12:01 PM ET

My Take: Is Tim Tebow performing miracles?

Editor's Note: Stephen Prothero, a Boston University religion scholar and author of "God is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions that Run the World," is a regular CNN Belief Blog contributor.

By Stephen Prothero, Special to CNN

(CNN)–In 1966, John Lennon famously claimed that The Beatles were "more popular than Jesus." Today that title may belong to Tim Tebow, the Denver Broncos quarterback more famous for praising Jesus than for throwing touchdowns.

As anyone who has visited Dallas or Atlanta on any recent weekend can attest, America’s two great religions are Christianity and football. In recent weeks, these two great faiths have come together in Tim Tebow, the new starting quarterback for the Denver Broncos and America’s latest merger of faith in Jesus and faith in the Almighty Touchdown.

When viewed from the perspective of “the world,” Tebow is, at best, a mediocre NFL quarterback. When viewed through the eyes of faith, however, he is something like the Second Coming of Joe Montana. And maybe Something More.

On this burning question of Tim Tebow, I must confess to being an agnostic. But I understand the fervor on both sides.

Skeptics generally concede that Tebow, an outspoken Christian, was an extraordinary high school and college football player. After all, he won the Heisman Trophy as a sophomore, and led his University of Florida team to two NCAA football titles.

But those who refuse to bow down before Tebow insist that NFL football is another game altogether, and when it comes to that game Tebow is a passing fancy. They attribute Denver’s near miraculous 5-1 run during his reign as a starter not to his offense but to the Broncos defense.

They point out that he throws about as well as Peppermint Patty, and that in one of his wins he completed only two passes more than Charlie Brown (which is to say two). His completion percentage (45.5%) is last in the league.

Skeptics are also turned off by Tebow’s public displays of religion. Tebow used to cite Bible verses on his eye black. And his tendency to be found praying while his teammates are strutting has added a new word—“Tebowing”—to the lexicon.

True believers say to hell with all that. What matters are the intangibles. Tebow is a winner. He may allow his team to fall behind, but in the end he leads the Broncos to victory, often in a fashion that can only be termed miraculous.

Which is to say, when it comes to the Almighty TT, you gotta have faith (or not).

In his book “Faith and Belief,” the Religious Studies scholar Wilfred Cantwell Smith describes how the notion of “faith” changed over the centuries from something like “trust” to its modern-day meaning of “belief in the unbelievable.”

And that, it seems to me, is what we are witnessing with Tebow.

It is simply not believable that a quarterback who cannot throw would turn a team from a 1-4 also-ran to a 6-5 playoff contender. But Tebow has done that, in part by running and in part, well, by faith.

There is, to be sure, Tebow's faith in Jesus. But perhaps more importantly, there is the faith of his teammates in him. Not to mention the adoration of legions of University of Florida alums, and of fans in Denver and beyond.

As a scholar of religion, I have little expertise in football, NFL or otherwise. But I cannot help weighing in on a few comparisons between TT and JC:

Jesus: turned a ragtag band of 12 apostles into the number one religion in the world

Tebow: turned a ragtag squad of 11 football players into an NFL juggernaut

Jesus: prayed a lot (to God)

Tebow: prays a lot (to Jesus)

Jesus: ran the money changers out of the temple

Tebow: runs the  spread option

Jesus: miraculously saved a wedding at Cana by turning water into wine

Tebow: miraculously led the Broncos to last-second victories against the Dolphins, the Jets and the Chargers.

Coincidence? You be the judge. As for me, I'm sitting back and waiting for Tebow to do something truly miraculous. Like winning a game without completing a single pass, or running back a punt for a touchdown, or kicking a 50-yard field goal to win a game.

Meanwhile, I am happy to report that Jesus is still more famous than Tebow. At least for now.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Stephen Prothero.

- CNN Belief Blog contributor

Filed under: Christianity • Opinion • Sports

soundoff (1,398 Responses)
  1. JT

    Would you jesus fanatics still support him praying all the time in puclic if he were praying facing Mecca like a good Muslim or is it because he's pushing your particular brand of mythology?

    November 29, 2011 at 8:12 pm |
    • BUMBLECLAD

      Keep it down I don't want to hear your tripe. It and you makes me sick

      November 29, 2011 at 8:25 pm |
    • TR6

      “Would you jesus fanatics still support him praying all the time in puclic if he were praying facing Mecca”

      Would they support him if his team wasn’t winning?

      November 30, 2011 at 4:53 am |
  2. Seek and you will find

    I admire Tebow for living out his faith. Are you tired of chasing after happiness, never being truly satisfied? Do you have a sense that there must be more to life? There is a God sized hole in your heart that Christ is longing to fill. If you would but humble yourself and consider that you were created. You are not an accident, not a result of time + matter + chance. Consider the human body, the amazing complexity of Dna, your feelings of love and of longing. Take a minute, think about it, humble yourself and ask God if he really does exist. Read Jesus in his own words and ask him humbly and honestly if he really exists. Give it a shot. If the Bible is untrue you've wasted half an hour maybe. But if it is true and Jesus really is who he said he was then you have gained is incalculable.

    November 29, 2011 at 7:21 pm |
    • HideAndSeekChampion

      Ok, I'll bite.

      Me: um....god, do you really exist?

      Vishnu: Yup, I'm real. Tell that delusional Christian above that they have the wrong god.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:24 pm |
    • HideAndSeekChampion

      Wait, you can read the bible in a half an hour? I spent the first 22 years of my life "seeking" God. Think another 30 mins will make the difference?

      I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:28 pm |
    • goddog

      Why do people who need crutches assume that those who do not, want them? What you are suggesting is that we should "give it a try". If I can't covince myself that there is a god... what makes you think I can convince a god? Wouldn't a fair god judge me on the merrits of my deeds rather than a selfishly motivated attempt to have my cake and eat it too?

      November 29, 2011 at 7:31 pm |
    • Seek and you will find

      "UNLESS YOU BELIEVE THAT I AM HE YOU WILL DIE IN YOUR SINS"-JOHN 8-24
      Jesus is crystal clear. People think God is so angry. But look, we don't have to die in our sins. We can believe in Jesus and be saved! That's really good news! But you must humble yourself and believe from your heart.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:35 pm |
    • goddog

      If I try really hard but I can't do it... can I still get in on a wild card slot or do I really have to be that sure? Nope, I'm out... going to h@ll. No matter how many burning buildings I ran into to save countless lives, I'm not good enough. That's not the god I'm looking for. The one I see is the one that smiles back at me in the mirror and tells me I'm a good person who will do good things... despite god telling me I'm a sinner because he made me that way. I say REVOLUTION!!!

      November 29, 2011 at 7:40 pm |
    • JT

      God-bots like you turn off more people than you are trying to convert. All one has to do is read how delusional you are and be glad they aren't infected as you are. Please stay away and seek treatment.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:41 pm |
    • Seek and you will find

      I KNOW where I'm going when I die. Do you? God wrote a book. Its called the Bible. I'm not calling you a fool for not abiding in Gods word. But he does. I suppose you think you're smarter than your maker.
      Look, you not believing in Jesus Christ has no bearing whatsoever on whether or not he exists.
      But if you are wrong......(
      "The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom, but fools despise wisdom" Solomon got it right 3 thousand years ago
      And it applies more than ever today.
      REPENT! AND BELIEVE THE GOOD NEWS AND YOU WILL BE SAVED FROM THE WRATH TO COME.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:54 pm |
    • Seek and you will find

      It doesn't matter how many good things or bad things you've done. Its not about you. Its about him and his sacrifice for us. Whatever you've done you can be forgiven for. This is the season we now celebrate. God gave man freewill, man
      did not honor God and lived a life of sin. Being holy, God cannot dwell with unholiness therefore sinners must be punished. But God loved us and made a way. God became a human. Lived a sinless life and was bore our sins on the cross so that anyone that believed in him will never perish.- This is really good news!

      November 29, 2011 at 8:06 pm |
    • goddog

      Seek... you need a history lesson. The bible is just one branch of a huge tree. Looking at the Abraham religions alone will show you what happens. The Jews had the Old Testament, the Christians added to it and it became Christianity, the Islamists added to it and it became Islam (and of course you have a buzillion Christian demoninations). These are all supposed to be the truth. How can you have a new truth and keep the old truths before it? Who is right? No-one. In science, if a new "truth" comes along it REPLACES the old one. If science, heck... if people used the same reasoning in their other responsibilities as they do on religion... we'd still be living in caves.

      November 29, 2011 at 8:06 pm |
    • goddog

      Seek, So I can be forgiven for the sins that I do and go to heaven but no matter how many good things I do i'm still going to H@ll? Does that make sense? You're lucky the Atheists don't just wipe you all off the earth. What does it matter? We're all going to H@ll no matter what and you get to your prized destination faster. Then we can have a bit of peace before we take the elevator down. Win win, yes? Oh, and we're gonna drink all your booze and go through your underwaer drawrs sooo....

      November 29, 2011 at 8:12 pm |
    • JT

      You admire him? I'm embarassed for him.

      November 29, 2011 at 8:15 pm |
    • Seek and you will find

      The old testament is filled with prophesy about a coming messiah. Check out Isaiah 53 which prophesies (predicts)
      Christ 800 years before he was born! The coming savior is the overarching theme of the whole OT. The detail of the prophesies of Jesus in the Ot are amazing! When I started to see them it really woke me up. Islam actually believes in Jesus, but like Jews they don't accept him as Messiah. Why? The Bible says that God blinded the eyes of the Jewish people. Muhammad came along about 600 years after Jesus and wrote a book about some
      dreams he had and called it the Quran. Mohammed didn't claim to be God. Neither did Buddha, Krishna Abraham or Moses. The only major religious figure to claim gust he was actually God was Jesus.

      November 29, 2011 at 8:23 pm |
    • TR6

      @Seek and you will find: “It doesn't matter how many good things or bad things you've done”

      So all I have to do is exactly what you tell me to… oops I mean what god tells me to and I can spend an eternity with adulterous televangelists, swindling mega church pastors, boy buggering priests and evangelical nut jobs like yourself (since you all “believe in Christ”). I don’t know how I could resist such an offer

      November 30, 2011 at 12:07 am |
  3. HideAndSeekChampion

    Tim Tebow. Leads a team prayer about honoring the ten commandments, doesn't keep the sabbath by playing football.

    November 29, 2011 at 7:21 pm |
    • goddog

      There is always an excuse or interperitation to explain these things. I'm telling you. If the bible was an instruction manual on how to build an entertainment center and 100 people bought it, you'd see 100 different looking entertainment centers. Don't get me wrong, I love entertainment centers, but when it comes to the salvation of my soul, i need something a little more clear and precise.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:35 pm |
  4. Ed

    Definitely & economically as well. He is doing what it takes to win no matter how it gets done. Expect Denver to win 10 games & reach the playoffs.

    November 29, 2011 at 7:18 pm |
  5. Deep North

    So when he loses, will that be an attack of Satan?

    November 29, 2011 at 6:53 pm |
    • dudley0415

      You think that the Broncos are God's Team?

      November 29, 2011 at 7:01 pm |
    • dudley0415

      I was told it was the Saints.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:02 pm |
    • Maggie

      I know a sure-fire way to find out if he can perform miracles - trade him to Dallas. If they suddenly become an actual football team, I'll be a believer.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:17 pm |
  6. Deep North

    Dumbest Article to date.

    November 29, 2011 at 6:49 pm |
  7. likealion

    This article has nothing to do with Tebow or miracles; it is Mr.Prothero's snide way of spitting in the face of Christianity. This "religious scholar" clearly has an Anti-Christian agenda; he should at least use his education and intellect to write reasonable arguments for his cause, until he does, I am left thinking he is nothing more than a silly coward.

    November 29, 2011 at 6:48 pm |
    • goddog

      As an Atheist I agree. There was an oportunity to write a decent article about Tim Tebows faith and what it means to him and how he lives his life through it. I would have probably enjoyed that read. This article is insulting to Atheists and the faithful alike. the picture alone is meant to look like a mega-church preacher and his body gaurd as they are about to step onto the stage. Sad.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:54 pm |
    • dudley0415

      goddog, I think you're an agnostic, not atheist.

      I have faith in that.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:56 pm |
    • JESUS

      and an UGLY one too.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:59 pm |
    • goddog

      I am an Atheist. i don't believe that there is a god. I was brought up in a Catholic family; Baptised, confirmed, parents were lectureres and religious education teachers. My Mom was a beautiful woman and practiced her faith with respect to all. I believe that spirituality can be a beautiful, personal experience. Organized religion to me is one big dogmatic joke. I respect people's faith, but not the way most choose to use it as a pedestal from which to look down at other people. I do believe that I am a better Christian, as an Atheist, than most Christians I know.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:16 pm |
    • goddog

      Jesus... you're the type I'm talking about. What faith are you that says you should judge me and call me names? Does that make you feel all warm and god-like inside? You don't know how I treat others, donate my time and money to help less fortunate (without the sermon). You need to take a good (and god) look at yourself. Pull the plank from your own eye before attempting to remove the speck from mine.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:20 pm |
    • dudley0415

      Go DDog – Well, brother, you know how we Christians are – our faith and prophesies are always right. (!) It won't matter if I pray for you anyway, right? I appreciate that even without the faith you bring forth the values. I imagine that your parents taught you that. Do well, man. I'm out for now.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:27 pm |
    • goddog

      I can't say that I have seen any prophesies that have come true but I wish you a good evening dudley.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:45 pm |
    • likealion

      goddog, I am a Christian and I think the remark made by the person posting under "jesus" is in the same category as the man who wrote this article; neither can argue their position without ignorance or hate.

      November 29, 2011 at 8:00 pm |
    • ha ha ha ha

      You mean you read the article? ha ha ha ha!

      November 30, 2011 at 4:52 am |
  8. HideAndSeekChampion

    The fact that a believer is happier than a skeptic is no more to the point than the fact that a drunken man is happier than a sober one.

    November 29, 2011 at 6:37 pm |
    • Francis Balliardo

      Us sober people don't have to worry about getting a DUI or being made fun of for being stupid and believing in Santa.

      Drunk = believer.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:38 pm |
    • Francis Balliardo

      By the way, is "HideAndSeekChampion" a reference to "god?" As in, people think it exists, but it's been hiding forever and no one has ever seen it? Excellent play on words. Excellent. And true! There is no god.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:40 pm |
    • HideAndSeekChampion

      Yes, I figured the believers wouldn't catch that though. 😉

      November 29, 2011 at 6:41 pm |
    • goddog

      The Christians on this post are very mean and angry. They are supposed to be like Jesus but they put me down. The Christains are making me so sad I could jump off of a bridge. I was so close to converting too.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:50 pm |
    • Wholly Mary

      Everyone has to believe in something and I'll believe I'll have another drink!

      November 29, 2011 at 9:36 pm |
  9. Lucas

    Yeah, Tebow is performing miracles all right. Millions of children die each year from starvation and this God of his does nothing. But the Broncos are down a score in the fourth quarter and God comes to the rescue.

    What a disgusting insult to people everywhere that have real problems (remember those starving children dying that I mentioned?). Either accept the fact that god, if he exists, doesn't give a damn about the plights of mankind (big or small), or accept the fact that his priorities are completely backwards.

    November 29, 2011 at 6:37 pm |
    • JESUS

      Hey Lucas. God has given the earth plenty. It's the GREEDY that don't give to the starving so stop blaming God for the world's troubles. Man is the one who was left in charge of this earth by God. Get some faith Lucas and maybe you'll stop blaming GOD for the wrongs on this planet.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:56 pm |
    • Lucas

      I assume you're a troll, JESUS? If not, let me clarify something since you obviously don't get it:

      I am not blaming god for anything. I don't even believe in god. What I am saying is that it's an insult to people who experience real, horrible suffering on a daily basis and die in conditions that you couldn't even begin to comprehend, to suggest that god is helping Tebow and the Broncos win a meaningless game of football. If god exists and cares about some millionaire quarterback winning a few games of football but doesn't care to do anything to alleviate the suffering of millions of starving children, then that god isn't worthy of being worshipped by anyone.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:04 pm |
    • dudley0415

      Luke – "If there is a God why isn't life wonderful?" is a question asked when some folks don't consider that God did not make puppets. Also, everything that happens is not the specific will of God. God doesn't care whether you have fish or chicken for dinner. Christ himself once said that, "It is not the will of the father that any of these little ones be hurt." Whether Jesus was speaking about children or new Christians the fact of the matter is that children (and even new Christians) ARE hurt. Why is this? Take a look around and see what a mess we have made of things. But we can't help it. It is our nature to screw up, be greedy, and self-centered. The nice part of this is that God understands and gives us a way out. How not?

      November 29, 2011 at 7:20 pm |
    • Lucas

      Dudley – I am not asking god to make life wonderful. Like I said, I don't believe in god. What I'm saying is that the notion that Tebow is performing miracles on the football field, that god somehow cares whether Tebow wins or loses, is a slap in the face to everyone that has real, serious problems that god does nothing about. If you believe that god meddles in the affairs of mankind to help a football team but isn't willing to help those who really need the help, then a serious re-evaluation of the merits of that god is in order.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:44 pm |
  10. chilliepepper

    I love Jesus but the real miracle is the Broncos defense. What a turn around. Tebow is winning because the Broncos defense doesn't give up points.

    November 29, 2011 at 6:36 pm |
  11. Brandon

    What a worthless article! Regardless of how you feel about Tebow and his convictions, comparing him to Jesus seems both pointless and inappropriate. I realize that the author was trying to be tongue-in-cheek for parts of the article, but I have to say I felt like I wasted 5 minutes of my time by reading it. I think this was a cheap attempt by the author to cash in on all the hype surrounding Tebow just so he could get his article read. I say let the kid play football, give him a chance to prove himself over an entire season, and quit bugging him about what he believes in.

    November 29, 2011 at 6:30 pm |
    • SaraD

      i like the authors comparison, he did it realistically. It has gotten a lot media attention and is deserving of a response.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:33 pm |
    • ha ha ha ha

      I can't believe you guys actually read the article! That's like reading the one on how Twilight has Biblical parallels. ha ha ha ha!

      November 30, 2011 at 4:54 am |
  12. Frank Cardenas

    Tebow is a fundamentalist nut job and the author of this article is just too lame. Can't believe that CNN actually prints this crap.

    November 29, 2011 at 6:26 pm |
    • A4mrtheist

      And I guess jesus has taken away his blessing since turning pro.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:31 pm |
    • DeeCee1000

      It's a little hard imagining the Jesus in the Bible taking the time to perform miracles for a football millionaire so he can win a football game. It even sounds twisted when you think about it, considering what football is and how much money Tebow makes.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
    • JESUS

      So sorry Frank you have no faith or sprit. You produce no fruit, and therefore you shall be plucked out.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:38 pm |
    • Seek and you will find

      "The chaff will be burned in unquenchable fire"

      November 29, 2011 at 6:42 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      "Burned in an unquenchable fire." Yeah, there's that loving father. I'm so bored with you fundies.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:47 pm |
    • dudley0415

      Unquenchable fire – a horror of an existence in a universe without the control of the Creator – the absence of God.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:52 pm |
    • Hear This

      @Seek and you will find
      "The chaff will be burned in unquenchable fire"

      One can tell so much about a person by the behavior that he attributes to his "God". You sir, are a monster.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:02 pm |
    • Seek and you will find

      IS God a monster because he punished evil? What would happen if a judge failed to punish a criminal? GOD Is just.
      He must punish evil. WE ARE all sinners. We all deserve death. But God loved us so much that he made a way to save us.
      Believe in his son Jesus Christ and you will not perish but have eternal life. BUT there is a cost, you must humble yourself before Christ and believe in him. Ask him to open your eyes to the truth.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:14 pm |
    • ha ha ha ha

      What an idiot. That's how I became an atheist. I guess your "god" and "Jeesus" wanted it that way. Good call.

      November 30, 2011 at 4:55 am |
  13. jboh

    They need a copy of Notre Dame's touchdown Jesus in Denver.

    November 29, 2011 at 6:25 pm |
  14. Jerry

    No, Prothero, Tebow is not performing miracles. Tebow is a football player and a Christian, not God.

    November 29, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
    • HideAndSeekChampion

      You can't prove that Tebow isn't a god. And that sir, means checkmate.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:22 pm |
    • dudley0415

      Neither can you prove that you love your mother since love cannot be measured, only imitated.

      Proof is a matter for technicians and scientists. Faith is a matter for the faithful.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:28 pm |
    • DeeCee1000

      Yeah, Jesus was all about performing miracles for millionaires who play football.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:28 pm |
  15. dudley0415

    Faith in one's teammates, spouse, children, family and friends all come from the same root inasmuch as that 'faith' (or love) hopes all things and believes all things, puts the best spin on all things and never fails. In this Tim evangelizes without words as he lives this creed.

    His unashamed public confession of specific belief in Jesus as Messiah is important, doctrinally. While some may say that Tim needs to consider that he may be turning off those who may potentially come to an understanding of a saving grace, stumbling blocks are attributed to believers, and to the vast majority of them he is not one.

    He is the tip of the spear for Christians who have an evangelical faith. Some say (even Christians) that if Tim were truly humble he would not pray publicly. I am pretty sure that he does not pray publicly so that people can see him do it.

    I have faith in him.

    November 29, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
    • goddog

      But he does pray in public, and people do see him. A lot of people do... Jesus said not to. Also faith does not equal love. Faith is and old term for trust. I personally need good reasons to trust someone, especially with my soul.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:27 pm |
    • dudley0415

      Jesus also said that the public prayers of the tax gatherer, "Be merciful to me – a sinner!" was justified and to be appreciated because of its sincerity.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:48 pm |
  16. goddog

    Do any believers care to answer why they think it's OK for Tebow to act as he does in light of this?
    “Whenever you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, because they love to pray while standing in synagogues and on street corners so that people can see them. Truly I say to you, they have their reward. But whenever you pray, go into your room, close the door, and pray to your Father in secret. And your Father, who sees in secret, will reward you” (Matthew 6:5-6).

    November 29, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
    • dudley0415

      The real question is not, "Why does he pray in public," but, "Why does he pray?"

      Jesus was talking about those men in the Sanhedrin who loved the respectful public greetings of "Rabbi," and who loved the best seats at banquets, bequeathed by the appearance of their piety. He was not saying that no one should pray in public, he was talking about WHY you pray and about the content of your heart as you pray.

      If it were otherwise there would be no Christian prayer in church or anywhere else but prayer basements.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:25 pm |
    • Ray Martinez

      ah! Finally someone who has actually read the bible. Why is it that it is usually the doubter and/or non-believer that actually takes time to read the damn thing? And I say – it is because they read the damn thing that they are doubters and non-believers.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:26 pm |
    • ed

      because that particular scripture is talking about the hypocritical observances of the Pharisee Jews and not talking about Tim Tebow playing football?

      and because the point of those verses is masking hidden sin in public displays of religion and not a condemnation of overt displays of Christianity? unless you have some secret information of Tebow molesting kids like Jewish Syracuse coach Bernie Fine or other hidden transgressions, Tebow praying during games has nothing to do with that scripture. you sound like a clueless noob. it's unlikely you even understood the distinctions explained to you in this post.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:27 pm |
    • ed

      lol Martinez that's why "non-believers" quote the same verse 1000x over weeks without understanding what it even says.

      the typical aggressive "non-believer" is 13 and a moron who can't even comprehend the theology he's crying about. he rampages on the internet with the 2-3 talking points he does know and spams that in lieu of actually advancing an argument.

      look at the scripture he quotes. if he had actually read the Gospel there wouldn't be any question what that passage means. he has no clue.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
    • goddog

      I'm sorry... you seem to be doing a lot of editorializing. Not only did he say where not to pray... including street corners, but he tells you where, specifically, exactly... and with door closed. From an outsider's view Christians have ultimately become those whom he was fighting against. He said "I am the way" and then the dogma just found it's way back. You know why? Because people will find any excuse to go on with their vanity and self serving ways... in spite of what Jesus said.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:34 pm |
    • dudley0415

      Ray – faith is a gift that not all believers have in the same amounts; some very much less, some very much more. Faith is such an enormous word that most of us cannot wrap our heads around it since it encompasses so much in life. It takes faith to read the Bible for its intended purpose, instead of reading it for the sake of literature or argument. As Jesus also said, not to say that some were actually deaf but that some cannot understand him due to a lack of faith, "He who has the ears to hear, let him hear."

      November 29, 2011 at 6:37 pm |
    • SaraD

      that would be funny if it were true Ed, heck it's funny anyway. I am a non believer and 35. Plenty of the people in my nonbelieving group are my age and older. They agree with Lincoln, Einstein, twain, and many of our founding fathers that this is a far fetched fairytale, nothing more. Certainly no guide for morality.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:38 pm |
    • dudley0415

      goddog – I hear and agree with some of your observations. It is true that Jesus warned his followers about pride, as in this instance. I also agree that today it can appear that Christianity has turned into an extrovert-centered faith. It is also true that He warned them against being lukewarm, especially when you are because others tell you to – like society today – yourself included.

      If you would actually entertain a chapter and verse discussion without, as you say, editorializing, I can be available.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:45 pm |
    • Ray Martinez

      pretty sure it was talking about anybody claiming to be a follower. parable – you're familiar with that, right? It's how the writers of the bible speak so that when they're proven wrong, they can conveniently claim another meaning for the same statement. don't go away mad, Ed. just go away...

      November 29, 2011 at 6:54 pm |
    • dudley0415

      Ray – I am familiar with all the references used above. The references of eyes to see and ears to hear are more ancient than the words of Jesus in the New Testament. I could be wrong about the book, but I believe it was either Isaiah or Jeremiah that first penned the notion that some could hear and understand while others could not. It is very true today with those who have 'faith,' in many things, like politics, or even football. A conservative cannot make sense out of the argument of a Liberal, and vice versa. It is not because they are stupid, but because the personal logic and interpretation is so different to what they now believe. They just can't make sense of it. The idea of God or a Savior is so alien to some that they neither can nor will ever have faith in God.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:12 pm |
    • sam

      @ ed – wow. "Our speshul book so speshul takes a certn awsum unnerstandin! lol" What a pompous d!ck.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:14 pm |
    • TR6

      @dudley0415: “As Jesus also said, not to say that some were actually deaf but that some cannot understand him due to a lack of faith, "

      Yup, and the UFO freaks will tell you that you can’t really understand UFOs until you believe in them

      November 30, 2011 at 1:27 am |
  17. Cris

    To all atheists and otherwise,

    The scripture that you are referring to about his followers not dying and witnessing his second coming is such:

    Mark 9:1 And he said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That there be some of them that stand here, which shall not taste of death, till they have seen the kingdom of God come with power.

    The kingdom of God he is referring to is within (as in it being an internal structure, state of mind)...so yes his followers finally got the point that he was making that the kingdom of God is within before they died.

    Luke 17: 21 "nor will people say, 'Here it is,' or 'There it is,' because the kingdom of God is within you."

    The kingdom of God is an internal structure which has a King (Jesus Christ) also has laws (llove God, love neighbor, do not lie, do not commit adultery, and many more) and moreover is eternal so I assure you those who are subjects of this kingdom will live forever. The kingdom of God can be accessed right now, at this moment. People who are not subjects of this kingdom on earth will spend eternity in torment and will experience death continually, no way around it, the creator (Owner and King of the Universe) says it to be so. This is His reality we are living in.

    November 29, 2011 at 6:16 pm |
    • Ray Martinez

      I don't care what your little book of mythology reads. That is fairy tale nonsense. DON'T YOU KNOW THAT?? Grow up, idiot.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
    • goddog

      Hahahahahaha! What Christain apologist website did you get that from? If you read everything in context it is obvious that he was telling them that there were people alive that day who would witness the physical end. Of course, he wasn't speaking in parables then so I'm not sure... haha.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:22 pm |
    • HideAndSeekChampion

      Hey, that book of fairytales gets most americans through their days and gives them a complete understanding of the world. Who are you question this particular fairytale? Other fairytales, yes. But the Bible is special. It's the one book of fairytales that are real.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:24 pm |
    • Ray Martinez

      Fairy tales are not real by definition... Damn you people. So stupid. Sick of all of you.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:28 pm |
    • Francis Balliardo

      So.... what we are required to do in understanding the bible, is take scripture from one book, and then figure out where to magically tie it to another scripture in a completely different book in order to justify our interpretations of the bible? So THAT'S what christianity is about?

      Here, read this:

      http://ebonmusings.org/atheism/2000years.html

      Try wiggling out of that one. Using the bible to prove the bible wrong. Welcome to the truth. Amen.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:28 pm |
    • SaraD

      that circular logic friend. The Qaran also says its true because it's in it's book which is holy. They both claim that and have equal amounts of horrors. The only reason you are posting this instead of stuff about the Qaran or some other religon is because you were indoctrinated as a child.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:28 pm |
    • Francis Balliardo

      Hide, and what part gets them through their days? The parts about killing babies, beating slaves, putting gays to death or r@ping women and then paying them like streetwalkers? The bible has all of that in it. You know, instructions for every day warm household living. Martha Stewart keeps it in the kitchen for recipes.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
    • cb

      you people really need to stop quoting the bible to prove your point. there is SO much wrong within the scriptures that any quote taken at face value is just ridiculous. According to the bible, you would be just in killing your wife if she publicly disobeys you. Sure, it's from Genesis, but Christians can't just choose which passages they choose to embrace and which to ignore.

      Hypocrisy runs rampant with these fundamental christians . . .

      November 29, 2011 at 6:35 pm |
    • HideAndSeekChampion

      Francis, I get the sense that believers just ignore all those bits.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:40 pm |
    • Cris

      To all who responded to my post,

      Say what you will, I love God and choose to accept Christ sacrifice on the cross for the forgiveness of my sins. I will lve forever with God my eternal comfort. You guys...I am actually afraid for you guys.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:51 pm |
    • Francis Balliardo

      Cris, of course you fear. That's what the bible teaches you. How to be afraid : )

      November 29, 2011 at 6:57 pm |
    • Ray Martinez

      I'm sorry HASC I replied to your post without fully grasping the satire. Hilarious – you sounded just like one of them. You are good, my man. Viva FFRF and reason.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:59 pm |
    • Cris

      Yes, I am afraid for you, Francis.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:00 pm |
    • Ray Martinez

      I'm afraid for your children, Cris. You're actually going to raise them on this tripe? That's sick.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:03 pm |
    • Cris

      @ Ray Martinez

      Sorry, no satire there. I am one of "them". My children are going to have the freedom to choose...just like the rest of us. I suggest you carefully consider your own desicion because you are going to stand alone before the God you are mocking.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:08 pm |
    • Ray Martinez

      you are worshiping a man made god. it's ok to feel stupid. don't be too hard on yourself though- there's always tomorrow. wake up and live.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:10 pm |
    • Hear This

      Cris,

      Same comment to you as to that other poster:

      You have ZERO proof of what your god thinks, does, or will do...

      One can tell so much about a person by the behavior that he attributes to his "God". You sir, are a monster.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:12 pm |
    • Cris

      No, I worship the God who created all things, including you, merely a man. There might not be a tomorrow for you. Wake up and live.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:12 pm |
    • Ray Martinez

      haha I've shat on your "god" time and time again and I am still here, a confident non-believer. actually – if you don't believe what I believe – YOU'RE going to hell. so there.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:14 pm |
    • Cris

      @ hear this

      I have sufficient proof. I require no more proof of His existence. Also, it is not something I feel I need to prove to you.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:14 pm |
    • Ray Martinez

      because the simple fact is that you can not.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:15 pm |
    • Cris

      @ Ray Martinez

      He is patient with you, Ray. He is patient with everyone but you have NO idea who you are addressing when you speak about or to Him. You are wasting your opportunity.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:17 pm |
    • Ray Martinez

      You, Cris, are a myopic fool. Have fun feeling guilty for masturbating. hahahaha

      November 29, 2011 at 7:18 pm |
    • Cris

      @ Ray Martinez

      I am not required to prove the existence of God to you. I am only required to tell you that that we as humanity require salvation from our sins against God. God had made a way by Christ's sacrifice on the cross to pay ransom for your sins. Believing that and putting faith in Jesus Christ will save you from an eternity of torment. Do what you will with that information.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:22 pm |
    • Ray Martinez

      I toss it aside without much thought to it at all. Just like I didn't really head Santa's warning of be good or no presents. You're adorable..

      November 29, 2011 at 7:24 pm |
    • HideAndSeekChampion

      "You guys...I am actually afraid for you guys."

      Fear is a powerful tool. Do you wonder why everyone is mocking you since you wrote that? Let's try this. Hey Cris, I'm afraid if you don't bow down to Allah, the one and only god, you're going to go to hell.

      Once you understand why that threat doesn't work on yourself, you'll understand why your childish threat doesn't' work on a critical thinker.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:33 pm |
    • ha ha ha ha

      No, Cris, you ARE required to prove your god exists. You really are stupid. You know you can't so you pretend it doesn't matter.
      You couldn't be more wrong if you tried. ha ha ha ha!

      November 30, 2011 at 4:58 am |
  18. User

    This article just simply seems like a mockery of Christianity and another attempt at bashing Christians secretly. THIS ARTICLE SHOULD BE REMOVED IMMEDIATELY AND CNN AND THE WRITER SHOULD APOLOGIZE!

    November 29, 2011 at 6:15 pm |
    • Ray Martinez

      haha – why you so sad? Don't worry, after you graduate high school (if you graduate) you'll have life experiences and see things, do things. It is after you have experienced life, that you will deny the silly notion of "God."

      November 29, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
    • sam

      Don't be so cranky. It's an opinion piece t!tled 'my take'. Also, capslock does not make you more sincere.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:22 pm |
    • SaraD

      if your faith cannot withstand any questioning how faithful are you really?

      November 29, 2011 at 6:24 pm |
    • Francis Balliardo

      Apologize to whom exactly? The idiots that wrote the bible and couldn't keep the fairy tales of christianity straight? Or god for not being able to hire a decent editor to fix all of the contradictions and lies in the bible? Or the moronic idiots that believe in the bible? Which is it?

      November 29, 2011 at 6:33 pm |
    • nostradoofus

      You seem to b e suffering from 'religious paranoia'. Try and relax. It was a very good(tongue in cheek) article.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:34 pm |
    • Get Real

      User, "... a mockery of Christianity and another attempt at bashing Christians ..."

      Quit being so mockable and so bashable then. Nobody mocks the fact that the sun rises in the east. Nobody mocks the fact that viruses cause disease. You have no facts - only fantasies.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:43 pm |
    • ThisIsWhy

      Ray, most people who constantly bash a subject, people, or idea repeatedly are usually at their core in denial about their own self and beliefs. Insults, especially the juvenile ones are hurled to distance themselves from what they are afraid of or afraid they are. After a while no one takes you seriously or listens. These comment threads are supposed to be for intelligent adult and mature discussion. If you cannot do so please keep your juvenile biases and lack of knowledge to yourself.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:56 pm |
    • ThisIsWhy

      Same goes for you Francis, clean it up.

      November 29, 2011 at 6:58 pm |
    • ......

      "especially the juvenile ones are hurled to distance themselves from what they are afraid of or afraid they are. After a while no one takes you seriously or listens. These comment threads are supposed to be for intelligent adult and mature discussion. If you cannot do so please keep your juvenile biases and lack of knowledge to yourself."

      Pot meet Kettle....Kettle meet Pot

      November 29, 2011 at 6:59 pm |
    • Ray Martinez

      @thisiswhy – I don't have any idea what you're talking about. I am firmly entrenched in a loving family, I have a great job, my kids love and respect me and with good reason and I treat them the same way. One of my sons is a marine who will be fighting for your right to believe in whatever crap your mammy taught you, while simultaneously fighting for my right to think freely. Your saying that I'm reaching or searching for something or running away from some hidden scary truth is inane ramblings from a believer of Bronze Age fairy tales. Your argument is completely invalid, you are awarded NO points and may Zeus have mercy on your soul.

      November 29, 2011 at 7:07 pm |
    • Copenhagun

      How about no?

      November 29, 2011 at 7:07 pm |
    • JT

      This guy sounds like a Muslim upset at a cartoon of Mohammad in a newspaper.

      November 29, 2011 at 8:03 pm |
    • Wholly Mary

      You sound like a muslim.

      November 29, 2011 at 8:17 pm |
  19. Sarah55

    12 symbolizes completeness. 11, on the other hand, symbolizes arrogance. (two number 1's put together, and 1 signifies only one person matters)

    November 29, 2011 at 6:15 pm |
  20. ......

    "Tim Tebow doesn't know what he believes in as he follows after an image of a false god and false Christ (Matthew 24:24)."

    TROLL ALERT – click the report abuse link to get rid of this TROLL – their book and website is supporting a CULT.

    November 29, 2011 at 6:14 pm |
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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.