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Is the black church guilty of spiritual hypocrisy in same-sex marriage debate?
Delman Coates at Mt. Ennon Baptist Church is among a minority of black ministers in Maryland who have endorsed gay rights.
May 12th, 2012
08:00 AM ET

Is the black church guilty of spiritual hypocrisy in same-sex marriage debate?

By John Blake, CNN

(CNN) - Some people wonder if the black church will punish President Barack Obama for announcing support for same-sex marriage.

Here’s another question:

Why would the black church cite scripture to exclude gays when a similar approach to the Bible was used to enslave their ancestors?

“It’s so unfortunate,” says James Cone, one the nation’s most influential black theologians and author of “The Cross and the Lynching Tree.”

“The literal approach to scripture was used to enslave black people,” he says. “I’ve said many times in black churches that the black church is on the wrong side of history on this. It’s so sad because they were on the right side of history in their own struggle.”

Call it historical irony: Black church leaders arguing against same-sex marriage are making some of the same arguments that supporters of slavery made in the 18th and 19th centuries, some historians say. Both groups adopted a literal reading of the Bible to justify withholding basic rights from a particular group.

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

Opposition to gay rights is not the standard position of all black churches. Still, while several predominately white mainline denominations have officially accepted gays and lesbians in various forms, the vast majority of black churches still consider homosexuality a sin.

Black church leaders recently helped lead a successful drive to amend North Carolina’s constitution to ban same-sex marriage. The Rev. Fred Robinson, a black pastor in Charlotte, says most black churchgoers aren’t hypocrites. They take scripture, and sin, seriously.

“Black people are not confused,” Robinson says. “If you look at the scriptures that oppose homosexuality, Old and New Testament, they are clearer cut than the ones people used to justify slavery.”

Yet there are other factors beyond the Bible that shape the black church’s resistance to same-sex marriage.

“It’s more than scripture – it’s history, culture, how we were raised,” says the Rev. Tim McDonald, founder of the African American Ministers Leadership Council.

Some black church leaders are still fighting hard just to persuade straight black couples to marry. Accepting same-sex marriage when so many black households lack a husband and wife makes McDonald uneasy.

“I am not comfortable performing a wedding ceremony of the same sex,” says McDonald, an Obama supporter. “That’s just where I am.”

Some black pastors, however, embrace a literal approach to the Bible not just to exclude gays but to get rid of competition, says Edward Blum, a San Diego State University historian.

Some black pastors cite New Testament passages such as Paul’s demand that women keep silent in churches to argue against black women in the pulpit.

That argument is harder to make when black women’s energy and donations form the backbone of the black church, Blum says, but some still get away with it.

“The biblical literalist reading has kept male leadership in power in a church that is hugely female,” Blum says. “It keeps power in men’s hands.”

The one book that mattered

Black churches also embrace a literal reading of the scripture because of its unique history, says Blum, author of “W.E.B. DuBois, American Prophet.”

During slavery and segregation, many blacks saw the Bible as the one document they could trust. The Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, state and local laws – all found some way to ignore their humanity, Blum says.

The Bible, though, was one book that told them that they weren’t slaves or three-fifths of a person, Blum says.

It said they were children of God.

“Throughout the 18th and 19th century, what document could they trust?” Blum says. “When the Bible says it’s so, it’s something that black people believed they could trust.”

Their enemies, though, used that same veneration of the Bible against them. Slaveholders had a simple but powerful argument when critics challenged them: Trust the Bible.

They cited scriptures such as Ephesians 6:5. (“Slaves, be obedient to those who are your earthly masters, with fear and trembling. ...”) And they said Jesus preached against many sins, but never against slavery.

Since the Bible is infallible, and scripture sanctions slavery, it must be part of God’s order, slaveholders concluded.

“Slavery is everywhere in the Bible,” Blum says. “When Americans who were in favor of slavery defended it with the Bible, they had a treasure trove of clear biblical passages that accepted enslavement.”

Blum says abolitionists found it difficult to mount an effective counterargument. They couldn’t just say trust the Bible. They preached another approach to scriptures.

They said you couldn’t enslave people based on the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have them do to you. (Obama cited the Golden Rule and his Christian faith in supporting same-sex marriage).

“The abolitionist turned to the ethics and spirit of the Bible,” Blum says. “They were theological modernists before modernism.”

And what are black clergy and churchgoers today when they cite the Bible to oppose same-sex marriage?

Robinson, the North Carolina pastor, says they’re not homophobes.

“It says in the Bible that homosexuals will not inherit the Kingdom of God,” he says. “How do you explain that one away? A lot of honest Christians are not trying to hate homosexuals. They’re saying that if I take the Bible seriously, I’m not sure I can say it’s right.”

Robinson says that some opposition to homosexuality is actually based in compassion:

“If I’m concerned about your soul, I have to tell you the truth in love.”

Cone, who teaches at Union Theological Seminary in New York City, says black churchgoers opposed to same-sex marriage are instead mimicking their ancestors’ oppressors.

“I tell some people, ‘These people were against you.’ They would have lynched you. How are you going to now join them and help them lynch somebody else?’”

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Barack Obama • Christianity • Culture wars • Gay marriage • Gay rights • Homosexuality • Politics

soundoff (4,348 Responses)
  1. SciGuy

    Your root comment is nonsense, and my response shows why. This form of interaction is normal.

    May 12, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
    • preacherman

      Dear SciGuy,
      Making a nonsensical statement in order to expose the absurdity of a particular perspective is the essence of parody. It's encouraging that you at least recognize it as nonsense. Now you are encouraged to compare this absurdity to similar arguments made from the perspective that was being critiqued.
      Thank you again for your continued interest.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
  2. Rainer Braendlein

    In order to get the topic of gay marriage and gayness right, we have to understand the relation between God and natural human beings in general.

    Our basic problem is that we don't trust God. We are not utterly convinced that he loves us.

    Actually, if we would watch the stars, the sun and the moon, heaven and earth, sweet animals, plants and our fellow human beings, we should conclude that God is a loving God, which seeks our happiness. Although the Creation is not still in its perfect genuine state, it still shows us God's eternal power and godhead. Actually, we should regard the Creation as a kind of gospel (good news). God created a world for us, in which we should be happy in his presence. He made a wife for us and sweet animals, so that we might not feel lonely.

    We want to have got all goods, but don't seek the giver of the good gifts. The ancient Romans and Greeks worshipped their idols like Zeus, Hermes, etc. and we worship the Mammon, which is the God of materialism and capitalism. Then we wonder, why we have a lack of certain things, which we need to be happy. The Mammon is an evil demon, which doesn't seek our happy life, but our destruction and death.

    In a word, in order to become happy, we need to return to the Source of Life, which is God. We can be happy, only if we are connected with the Source of happiness and life, which is God himself.

    How can we know that God is a loving God, who seeks our happiness?

    God proved his love by a second revelation beside the Creation. God delivered his beloved Son for our sins and raised him from the dead for our justification. Ain't we sinners? We adore Mammon day by day, instead of the Lord, the Eternal God, which has made heaven and earth. Yet, this heavy sin can get forgiven and we can released from this sin by the gospel of Jesus Christ. The gospel of Jesus Christ convinces us of God's infinite love and we adore him instead of Mammor or any other idol (Mahomet, pope, cheap-grace-Jesus and the like).

    After we have returned into a confident relationship with the Eternal God by the gospel of Jesus Christ, we become able to trust him that he even may give us everything, which we need, even a wife.

    And this is, what the gays need. They need a restoration of their confidence in God. This could help them to control the lust of their body and wait up to the day, when they meet their wife, which God has predetermined for them.

    As the faith, which we can produce by reason, is very small, God gave us the sacramental baptism. At baptism we receive a person of the Godhead, the Holy Spirit, which gives us a strong faith in Christ and the Father. The Spirit is stronger than our sinful body and if we invite him day by day, he uses our body, which is dead in itself, as a tool of righteousness. By the impact of the Spirit sinners by nature become holy people, because the holy divine nature is stronger than our sinful human nature. Its only important that we daily remember our health in Christ.

    Conclusion:

    Gays should neither marry each other, nor go to church, but repent and believe in Christ, who has borne their sins, when he died for them on the cross. After they have started to believe, God will give them a wife and implant them into his holy Church.

    May 12, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
  3. Highland

    BLKS don't marry each other the regular way.

    May 12, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
  4. postedbygeo

    33 years old, no wife, no children, no girl friend, at a time and place when it was acceptable to have more than 1 wife. This information is in the many revised (6 I have read) versions of compiled writings called a bible. The man a lot of sheep call J.C. happily loved men. In-equality is a sin that is being dumped on J.C. a happy man. The eastern-Religion called -Christianity- is nailing it's founder back onto a cross.

    May 12, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
    • GauisCaesar

      Because you are seeing Jesus as a mere human, you will not see him as anything else. Of course he looks like a gay man to you

      May 12, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
  5. GauisCaesar

    The fallacy today seems to be how the Bible looks at slavery, which is not what these atheists are saying it does. In the Bible, man's relationship to God should be one of a graciuos slave. When Paul refers to slaves in the NT, he is symbolizing the relationship we should have to our Creator. Those who haev no understanding though dont understand this since they only are looking on the surface!

    May 12, 2012 at 3:31 pm |
    • Observer

      GauisCaesar,

      The real fallacy today lies in pretending that the Bible doesn't say it's okay to beat your slaves/servants.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      I am going to assume you believe the earth is only 6k years old, noah's ark and adam and eve, correct?

      May 12, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
    • Hitchens

      To be a so called atheist is to be a perfected liar. Truth has no place in an "atheists" lifestyle.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
    • edwardo

      I'm so sick of Christians using the word symbolizes. That's BS! It either means what it says, or it doesn't. It means what it says, literally. If not, then it is a puzzle not worth solving.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      @Hitchens
      "To be a so called atheist is to be a perfected liar. Truth has no place in an "atheists" lifestyle."

      How so?

      May 12, 2012 at 3:40 pm |
    • Truth7

      edwardo – ONLY the Holy Spirit can reveal the spiritual message. Jesus tells you that only some are meant to "hear". All of the lost tribes of Israel (Jacob) were made blind (without knowledge) and deaf (can't understand). So, only some can "hear" it. One day, everyone will be able to and you'll remember some people trying to tell you. But if you want to know, ask God to reveal Himself to you. When He does, study at Him with Him teaching you through the Spirit.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:42 pm |
    • GauisCaesar

      Edwardo...it does, but you have to actually read the whole passage, not just the one verse that people bring up!

      May 12, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • edwardo

      @Truth7 – For such a supreme being, he sure has a tough time getting his message out. He speaks in riddles, only reveals imself to certain people, loves being in the shadows instead of out in the open. He's elusive, and unavailable. Not fit for worship.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
  6. Rainer Braendlein

    In order to get the topic of gay marriage and gayness right, we have to understand the relation between God and natural human beings in general.

    Our basic problem is that we don't trust God. We are not utterly convinced that he loves us.

    Actually, if we would watch the stars, the sun and the moon, heaven and earth, sweet animals, plants and our fellow human beings, we should conclude that God is a loving God, which seeks our happiness. Although the Creation is not still in its perfect genuine state, it still shows us God's eternal power and godhead. Actually, we should regard the Creation as a kind of gospel (good news). God created a world for us, in which we should be happy in his presence. He made a wife for us and sweet animals, so that we might not feel lonely.

    We want to have got all goods, but don't seek the giver of the good gifts. The ancient Romans and Greeks worshipped their idols like Zeus, Hermes, etc. and we worship the Mammon, which is the God of materialism and capitalism. Then we wonder, why we have a lack of certain things, which we need to be happy. The Mammon is an evil demon, which doesn't seek our happy life, but our destruction and death.

    In a word, in order to become happy, we need to return to the Source of Life, which is God. We can be happy, only if we are connected with the Source of happiness and life, which is God himself.

    How can we know that God is a loving God, who seeks our happiness?

    God proved his love by a second revelation beside the Creation. God delivered his beloved Son for our sins and raised him from the dead for our justification. Ain't we sinners? We adore Mammon day by day, instead of the Lord, the Eternal God, which has made heaven and earth. Yet, this heavy sin can get forgiven and we can released from this sin by the gospel of Jesus Christ. The gospel of Jesus Christ convinces us of God's infinite love and we adore him instead of Mammor or any other idol (Mahomet, pope, cheap-grace-Jesus and the like).

    After we have returned into a confident relationship with the Eternal God by the gospel of Jesus Christ, we become able to trust him that he even may give us everything, which we need, even a wife.

    And this is, what the gays need. They need a restoration of their confidence in God. This could help them to control the lust of their body and wait up to the day, when they meet their wife, which God has predetermined for them.

    As the faith, which we can produce by reason, is very small, God gave us the sacramental baptism. At baptism we receive a person of the Godhead, the Holy Spirit, which gives us a strong faith in Christ and the Father. The Spirit is stronger than our sinful body and if we invite him day by day, he uses our body, which is dead in itself, as a tool of righteousness. By the impact of the Spirit sinners by nature become holy people, because the holy divine nature is stronger and our sinful human nature. Its only important that we daily remember our health in Christ.

    Conclusion:

    Gays should neither marry each other, nor go to church, but repent and believe in Christ, who has borne their sins, when he died for them on the cross. After they have started to believe, God will give them a wife and implant them into his holy Church.

    May 12, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
    • edwardo

      Conclusion: You are psychotic! You live in a fairy tale existence. Good for you! Utopia without drugs. I'm stuck in reality. It's harsh, but I'm an adult, so I can cope.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      "In order to get the topic of gay marriage and gayness right, we have to understand the relation between God and natural human beings in general."

      there is no god. like any other diety, he is made up. the relation between god and man is that he is a figment of the deluded minds of cult members.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
    • Observer

      Rainer,

      Now please tell us all about the talking serpents and unicorns that you apparently believe in.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
    • Marti

      Gays SHOULD go to church.
      The churches should adopt them and love them.
      How else will they learn the teaching of the One who loves us.
      We do not have to approve of their choice, but we can love them.
      No scientific research has found that they are BORN that way.
      Who will show them the way?

      May 12, 2012 at 3:42 pm |
      • Rainer Braendlein

        Of course, they can attend single services, but a fixed church member they can only become after repentance.

        May 12, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
    • edwardo

      @Marti – "you're going to show me the way"? How superior you must feel !! If you really think I have some burning desire to follow your way, your delusional brain is lying to you once again.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:50 pm |
    • athought1

      "We have to understand the relationship between God and natural human beings." The common delusion is expressed in your first sentence. There is no "me" here and "God" there as separate beings. That separation is the creation of the ego – self. We sense the truth of Presence but to live that truth means the obliteration of ego. THAT was Christ's message!

      Rather than face extinction we imagine God, turning the mystery of Presence into a God that is out there somewhere, and endowing our creation with human characteristics. Then we have a relationship with our imaginary God. The Source, as you describe it, is not separate from who and what we are at our core. The "gospel" Christ taught is the same message that every ancient wisdom teacher has expressed (albeit distorted by humans almost immediately). It is what Aldous Huxley called the Perennial Philosophy – although it is not a philosophy. It is a way of being in the world that dissolves ego. Rather than face this terrifying prospect, the ego creates a belief system that actually completely disguises what is true. For anyone who wants to know the truth of Spirit (Awareness, Consciousness, and the various ego-versions we call God, Allah, etc.) the lesson is always the same. Be still and listen. Stop believing, stop imagining, stop trying to shove some tiny concept of what and who God is into your's and everyone else's conceptual mind.

      Stop indulging in the fantasy that your thoughts and feelings are God's thoughts and feelings and what everyone else should be thinking and feeling. The idea that the human race could ever possibly fit the Vastness of Being into a belief system is patently ludicrous. These beliefs only become one more thing that the ego uses to make itself special and superior and others wrong and inferior (and therefore okay to misuse and abuse).

      May 12, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
  7. Harry

    LOL @ The Bible as a moral authority guide. Considering some of the stuff that is in there would be considered a crime against humanity now a days I think not.

    May 12, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
    • Marti

      Some of the greatest scientists were believers. Read history.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
    • Drew

      @Truth7: how do we identify false prophets?

      May 12, 2012 at 3:40 pm |
    • Drew

      sorry, wrong thread

      May 12, 2012 at 3:40 pm |
  8. Dennis

    Once again CNN has an article against religious views.Atheists must love this website.

    May 12, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      you kidding? CNN kisses christianities @ss all day every day. so bias toward christians it unbelievable.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
    • edwardo

      Yeh we love it. A site not afraid to tell the truth. It sugar-coats nothing. It makes people deal with reality.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
    • Drew

      All this article does is ask you to actually examine your beliefs.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:31 pm |
    • Fufu

      Bootyfunk you are so skewed. I see the OP's point almost daily on CNN.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:31 pm |
    • Truth7

      Every article they have is written by, or quotes, false prophets. As Jesus said "you will be deceived".

      May 12, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
  9. Truth7

    People need to ask God to wake them up out of their blindness. The only reason someone wants a person to break their faith in God is so that they too won't inherit God's kingdom. Most of us in this country are of the lost tribe of Israel and THAT's what they DO NOT want you to know. Why do you think that out of all the time in the world, this country was settled last? Why some slaves came over? So that their descendants would live here as well. Evil is trying so hard to make all of us break the commands that God placed in our hearts, so that we fail. Most of us are brothers with some weeds mixed in. Turn to your neighbor and treat them well instead of letting evil deceive you. Choose right over wrong.

    May 12, 2012 at 3:27 pm |
    • edwardo

      Gee whiz.. you're really nutty man. I gotta tell ya. Not sure if you actually believe what you post... but if you do, you are truly nutty.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      Absolutely choose right over wrong! Lose the god and religion thing and you'll be on your way!

      May 12, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
    • n8362

      South America was settled last, the rest of the comment is so ridiculous it is not worth responding to.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
    • athought1

      "The kingdom of God is within you." (Luke, 17:21). Is = right now. Not to be "inherited" after you have done something to deserve it, in some imaginary future. Right here, right now, with no qualifications. Is.

      "Within you" as in, not to be found outside of you in some belief system, in an imaginary future, in the teachings of someone from the imaginary past, in a place over there or a heaven to come. Within you. Not to be cultivated or taught about or understood. Within you. You were born with it, it has been with you all of your life and it is here right now.

      When his disciples asked "when will the kingdom come" Christ responded "It will not come by waiting for it. It will not be a matter of saying 'here it is' or 'there it is.' Rather, the kingdom of the father is spread out upon the earth, and men do not see it." (from the Gospel of Thomas, one of the Gnostic Gospels, or early Christian gospels hidden near Nag Hammadi so that they would not be destroyed by the orthodox Christian Church that emerged between 150-200 AD).

      May 12, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
  10. Drew

    I've yet to see any Christians on here actually address the point of the article; scripture promotes slavery, so surely it isn't literally infallible, right?

    May 12, 2012 at 3:26 pm |
    • SciGuy

      Scripture is the infallible word of God; slavery is not inherently sinful.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
    • Fufu

      It does not promote slavery, it tells people that ARE enslaved how to act. And it never says black people should be slaves.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
    • Truth7

      Scroll down, there are some truthful answers. Slavery in the Bible is NOT the slavery that some evil men did here. If one truly understood what the Bible said, they would know that. Religion is led by so many false prophets leading people astray.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
    • edwardo

      @Truth7 – slavery is slavery! No matter how you sugar-coat it. The bible is filled with incest, murder, death of innocents, slavery, and torture. Quit trying to change its meaning. It means what it says.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
    • Drew

      @SciGuy: I think most moral people will disagree with you

      @Truth7: Fine, but doesn't that just affirm the need to take historical context into consideration when interpreting the bible?

      May 12, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
    • SciGuy

      Drew, you are likely correct, since most so-called moral people routinely value their opinion above God's word.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:42 pm |
  11. Helen

    Sorry, It is Gian Carlo, (spelling error)

    Love you by any name!

    Please do not discriminate against ME for MY beliefs! I do believe that marriage is between one man and one woman.
    And do read Called Out by Janet Boynes, (a former lesbian's discovery of freedom)

    May 12, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      "Please do not discriminate against ME for MY beliefs! I do believe that marriage is between one man and one woman."

      Why do you believe marriage is between one man and one woman?

      May 12, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
  12. Drew

    Remember that the bible is a philosophical tome, not a ****ing rule book. The intellectual and spiritual shallowness of evangelicals just kills me

    May 12, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
  13. Observer

    NO ONE believes every word of the Bible. They just pick and choose whatever agrees with them

    Why not pick the Golden Rule rather than mindless hatred?

    May 12, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
    • Seen it before

      If you are not religious why are you trolling around a religious blog? Miracles do happen, I hope that your heart can be healed and that you can learn to feel God instead of trying to prove that your brain is smarter than the Creator's.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      @Seen it before

      We are smarter than the creator because we are absent of a god.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:26 pm |
    • Observer

      Seen it Before,

      Good thinking. You think my heart needs to be healed of advocating the Golden Rule.

      Well done.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:27 pm |
    • Frances

      He loves everyone of us!
      God loves you, it's that simple.
      And you will lead your life accordingly.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
    • Seen it before

      Advocating the Golden Rule and soapboxing about the Bible are two different things, I have seen all this before 100's of times, it's called philosophy.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:31 pm |
    • Observer

      Seen it before,

      Passing judgment on others and IGNORING the Golden Rule is the height of Christian HYPOCRISY.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
  14. n8362

    It is immoral to impose your religious superstition on others.

    You do not believe in religion because you honestly think it is true, you believe in it because you fear mortality or are seeking meaning in your life. It does not take a genius to figure out all religion is man made, so for humanity's sake, please stop lying to yourself.

    Deluding yourself in religion does not change reality. Lying to yourself is probably the worst possible way to try to find meaning.

    May 12, 2012 at 3:19 pm |
  15. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things .

    May 12, 2012 at 3:19 pm |
    • Observer

      Spamming a mindless comment won't fool God into brownie points.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
    • just sayin

      Two wonderful Truths, First that atheism is useless and second a heartfelt call to prayer, talking with a God who has made Himself available to us. Simple True statements of fact. God bless, third Truth added no extra charge.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:25 pm |
  16. Bob

    I am not religious a least bit nor am I an animal but I know enough about theology to know that God in Judeo-Christian beliefs is not a he or a she, nor a deity.

    Stop trying to act like you understand or can use logic to boost your as to evidence what God believes. Go back to school.

    You are most likely an atheist who is using your uneducated logic as evidence while at the same time acknowledging the existence of God and that would be hypocritical.

    May 12, 2012 at 3:19 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      I wish that made some sense.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
  17. Christina

    Anybody who would try to use the Bible to justify slavery is a hypocrite in for it from Christ himself. The New testament was written centuries ago and offers a glimpse into life during that time not to be used as a literal
    example for now . The deeper meaning is supposed to be gleaned from its passages. Living the gospel as best you can. It's not to be used to justify harming another person. What a bunch of idiots.

    May 12, 2012 at 3:19 pm |
    • toosliq

      Do not call someone a fool A.(Matthew 5:22) – "But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be guilty before the court; and whoever says to his brother, 'You good-for-nothing,' shall be guilty before the supreme court; and whoever says, 'You fool,' shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell."

      May 12, 2012 at 3:23 pm |
    • Marti

      Amen!

      May 12, 2012 at 3:31 pm |
    • ME II

      " It's not to be used to justify harming another person. "

      Unless it's for a holy reason like war, blasphemy, adultery, and especially if God himself tells you to harm someone and he's done it before, right?

      May 12, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
  18. pervert alert

    Lets do something for the folks that gave the world AIDS !

    May 12, 2012 at 3:18 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      It is very clear you do not know anything about the origin of aids. Typical.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
    • Observer

      Yep. Fortunately heteros have never spread any STD's.Sure.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
    • mandarax

      You want to get rid of chimps?

      May 12, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
    • pervert alert

      Nope, qu -eers. Chimps are innocent.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:29 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      stop promoting ignorance. no one "gave the world aids". dummy.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      In your world view your god created aids didn't it?

      May 12, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
    • mandarax

      "In February 1999 a group of researchers from the University of Alabama2 announced that they had found a type of SIVcpz that was almost identical to HIV-1. This particular strain was identified in a frozen sample taken from a captive member of the sub-group of chimpanzees known as Pan troglodytes troglodytes (P. t. troglodytes), which were once common in west-central Africa.
      The researchers (led by Paul Sharp of Nottingham University and Beatrice Hahn of the University of Alabama) made the discovery during the course of a 10-year long study into the origins of the virus. They claimed that this sample proved that chimpanzees were the source of HIV-1, and that the virus had at some point crossed species from chimps to humans."

      Dang science! Not only can we not use AIDS as a convenient excuse to defame the gay community, it also looks like it wouldn't exist if not for the fact of evolution.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
  19. Voice of Reason

    It gets to the point where it is just so incredibly ludicrous and shameful that some people actually have a world view so far from reality it places them in a zone of intolerance. They refuse to seek change and exploration. It is such a waste of a precious life as there is so much to be in awe of. There was no god, there is no god and there will never be a god.

    I need to go out and talk to a tree as they make more sense than those religious types do!

    May 12, 2012 at 3:18 pm |
    • Brianna

      Have you not read? Some of the greatest scientists believed in God.
      Galileo.....
      reason is not opposed to faith

      My brother is a physicist and is in awe of the universe....and has a strong belief in God. Please read history. Please read.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
  20. preacherman

    IF GOD HAD INTENDED A MAN TO MARRY A MAN HE WOULD HAVE CREATED MEN WHO ARE ATTRACTED TO MEN!!!

    wait.......

    May 12, 2012 at 3:18 pm |
    • SciGuy

      So, I think I see what you are saying. If a man wants it, it must be ok.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
    • preacherman

      Dear SciGuy,
      The root comment consti.tutes a parody of common arguments made by religious persons who do not approve of something they don't understand. Please note that this form of social critique is common in contemporary discourse.
      Thank you for your interest.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
    • SciGuy

      Preacherman, your comment is nonsense and my response shows why. This is normal discourse.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
    • Miriam

      I thik SciGuy got your point better than you got his.

      The parody was simplistic and unfair to believers who are not.

      May 12, 2012 at 3:42 pm |
    • preacherman

      Are you claiming that this is not a common statement? "If God had intended (x) he wouldn't have (y)?

      I never claimed that every believer says this, but are you really saying this isn't a common argument?

      May 12, 2012 at 3:49 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.