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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. CT

    People should educate themselves on the 4million whites held as slaves in northern Africa...

    May 14, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
    • Tom, Tom the Piper's Son

      Lies!

      Every good black Christian knows only black people have been enslaved.

      May 14, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  2. Same but Different

    So why are 66% of black children being raised in single parent homes compared to 24%non-Hispanic white children?

    " it’s history, culture, how we were raised"

    Doesn't mean it's right...

    May 14, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
  3. FactsRBad

    This is what happens when you strictly adhere to a book written by uneducated nomads thousands of years ago.

    May 14, 2012 at 3:53 pm |
  4. JC

    What blows my mind about this article and the other slew of articles on CNN concerning this is that they are honing in on only Blacks and Black churches. What about all of the whites and white churches that are saying the same exact thing. CNN is making is seem like only blacks are the hypocrites here. This type of race baiting is unnecesary and ridiculous.

    May 14, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
    • Randall

      The same deserved negative attention was given to the Mormon church. You should come to CNN more often.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
    • Tom, Tom the Piper's Son

      For one this isn’t only cover on CNN. Secondly it’s about the hypocrisy.. not because they are black but because they claim discrimination on a daily bases then turn around and try to do the same some another MINORITY group.

      This isn’t rocket surgery capt.

      May 14, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  5. Joe from Kalispell

    We, as a people, are becoming more fragmented on almost every issue. I really don't see a way back to where we were 50 or 60 years ago.

    A major protracted war that fundamentally threatens our existence as a nation might get us to pull together but that is to awful to consider.

    Otherwise we need to start the discussion of how can sovereign states leave the union without starting the Second Civil War.

    May 14, 2012 at 3:50 pm |
  6. Vader

    That's the wonderful thing about the Bible. It can be twisted, interpreted, and used as a basis for rationalization for ANY position you want to take on ANY issue.

    May 14, 2012 at 3:47 pm |
    • Minny

      African Americans should take heed. The bible can and will be used to alter their position in society at any given time in the future.

      May 14, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
  7. JT

    I'm not a practicing Christian, but I'm fairly sure nowhere in his teachings did Jesus say to take The Bible literally (or probably the Torah, as The Bible wouldn't be written in its current form for several hundred years after his death).

    People who take The Bible literally, word for word, are stupid. I'm not sure there's a nice way to say it, but God gave you a brain to think for yourself.

    I think the church is determined to push as many people away as possible – probably their intentions all along, so that the few "chosen" among the congregation get all the benefits.

    If I were black, I'd have a lot harder time believing the literal accuracy of a book who's main supporters envision a blue-eyed brown-haired Jesus (and Virgin Mary, too).

    May 14, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • Serita

      We laugh when we hear things like Mohammed flying to the heavens on a winged white horse, but put our entire faith in someone walking on water or turning water to wine. That we would be so eat up with everlasting life as to actively thwart the life of a gay neighbor within this short lifetime is mind boggling to me. Mind your own black business. There is plenty to deal with in your own neighborhoods. Just look around. Stay out of my gay families struggle for equality under the law. I have praised your struggle, now move over and allow me the same courtesy.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:51 pm |
    • ttwp

      I would recommend going back and reading what Jesus had to say in the gospels. He took the Torah quite literally to include: the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, marriage between one man and one woman, Satan being real, the story of Jonah, etc.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
    • Tom, Tom the Piper's Son

      Umm.
      Show me were ‘Jesus’ (the bible is a lot bigger than just the parts about him) says hey..guys don’t that this literally.. but….my blood, your sins blah blah.
      Whether it should be taking literally is irrelevant. The bible (religion) should have no say at all.

      May 14, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  8. stacknef

    I guess since blacks got equal rights, no one else need apply.

    May 14, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
    • Raven

      African Americans should be focused on Child Protective Services, single teenage Mothers of five, dead beat dads, diabetes, unemployment, their unbelievably high incarceration rate, their recidivism rate, their drug infested neighborhoods and rap music. They have enough to worry about without pointing fingers at the disproportionately highly educated subgroup of gay Americans who are paying exhorbitant taxes to educate the endless conveyer belt of African American children.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • Dodd,T

      Raven, you sound angry. Perhaps you should go back to stuffing that thing in your mouth.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
    • iheartyou

      Caucasian Americans should be focused on Child Protective Services, single teenage mothers of five, dead beat dads, cancers, unemployment, their unbelievably high serial killer rate, their recidivism rate, their meth-infested neighborhoods and reality TV. They have enough to worry about without pointing fingers at the disproportionately highly educated subgroup of gay Americans who are paying exhorbitant taxes to educate the endless conveyer belt of Caucasian American children, and to fight corrupt politicians and crooked CEO's who are financially destroying this country.

      Works both ways.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
    • Tom, Tom the Piper's Son

      @iheartyou
      It’s is disproportionate by race and therein lies the difference genius.

      May 15, 2012 at 8:10 am |
  9. BICARO

    1 TIMOTHY 4:1 Now the Spirit(HOLY SPIRIT) speaks expressly(POINTEDLY), that in the latter times(THE TIMES IN WHICH WE NOW LIVE,THE LAST OF THE LAST DAYS,WHICH BEGIN THE FULFILLMENT OF ENDTIME PROPHECIES) some shall depart from the Faith(ANYTIME PAUL USES THE TERM "THE FAITH," IN SHORT he IS REFERRING TO THE CROSS;SO,WE ARE TOLD HERE THAT SOME WILL DEPART FROM THE CROSS AS THE MEANS OF SALVATION AND VICTORY), giving heed to seducing spirits(EVIL SPIRITS,I.E., "RELIGIOUS SPIRITS," MAKING SOMETHING SEEM LIKE WHAT IT ISN'T), and doctrines of devils(SHOULD HAVE BEEN TRANSLATED, "DOCTRINES OF DEMONS"; THE "SEDUCING SPIRITS" ENTICE BELIEVERS AWAY FROM THE TRUE FAITH,CAUSING THEM TO BELIEVE "DOCTRINES INSPIRED BY DEMON SPIRITS");

    May 14, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
    • David

      Wow, I'm gonna put down my George Bush voodoo doll and come over to your group, Party Central, burn baby burn....

      May 14, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
  10. reasonableone

    I'm glad this is getting out into the open. I would add that if "the people have spoken" really were the last word in policy, blacks would still be slaves and women would not be voting.

    May 14, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
    • Javier

      We are finishing up our bible next week as well. I'm so glad we decdeid to join you and start in January. It has brought me and my husband so much closer since we started reading out loud every night. It has been so much fun!Emily[]

      October 10, 2012 at 2:03 am |
  11. Jessica White

    🙂 When I read these comments, its very easy to determine who has more than one book under their belt.

    I ❤ Reading!

    "Books are weapons in the war on Ideas."

    For anyone interested in media and activism, there is an annual conference that draws people (intellectuals and advocates) from all over the world; Its the Allied Media Conference.

    Fabulous and eclectic organizing and collaborations occur at this event. Human Rights work in action, international social dynamics around every corner. Its a wonderful and diverse meeting of the minds.

    If you're going to bring your bible to beat the rights out of people though... Be weary, Its called "Allied Media" for a reason. Your intolerance will make you famous.

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

    Oh, how stupid people are. I am not black, so I have never been enslaved or mistreated in any aspect of my life except for a very SMALL portion of what makes me who I am, gay.
    I don't think that these people realize that they are more than just being black and really should support other HUMAN BEINGS! They are perpetuating discrimination. Would they like it if I perpetuated discrimination against blacks? Or decided to say that they did not deserve their rights because they are in fact black and should be stripped of rise rights as if I were to support the "lynching tree" again, slavery?
    I wouldn't do that. Then again, I am not black, so I have no need to perpetuate another minorities lack of human rights. Enough said.

    May 14, 2012 at 3:38 pm |
    • Polgie

      You're trying to equate the lack of gay marriage with a lynching? If you don't get married, you get a civil union and go on with your life. If a black guy is lynched, he dies. Get the difference?

      May 14, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
    • bama

      "Human Rights" really? for a man to marry a man or a woman to marry a woman is a human right? Wow! pretty bold statemen! Perhaps you should do some study on the Law of nature.

      May 14, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
  13. RT

    For claiming to be so oppressed, black people sure can be ignorant. It's embarrassing.

    May 14, 2012 at 3:37 pm |
    • calkosine

      Ha ha, right?

      May 14, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
    • RdWhtNBlu

      Chris Rock: "Who's more racist, white people or black people? Black people because we hate black people too!" It's the definition of urban sprawl. We keep running from them, they keep running from them too, eventually we are gonna have a two hour commute back to the city for the job coming from the safe mansions we keep building as they keep turning old white neighborhoods into ghettos.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:42 pm |
  14. charles

    I believe only one rule applies. A good person goes to heaven...and a bad person goes to Hell. As far as I know
    only 1 person makes that decision God.

    May 14, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
    • LinCA

      @charles

      You said, "I believe only one rule applies. A good person goes to heaven...and a bad person goes to Hell. As far as I know
      only 1 person makes that decision God.
      "
      What amazes me is that there are adults that believe there is a hell, yet continue to worship the monster that created it.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:39 pm |
    • bama

      Charles you have a major falacy in your argument. There are no good people. We are all rotten to the core; if not for what Christ did on the cross we would all be doomed.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
    • David

      bama- you mean to tell me that religious conservatives know they're rotten to the core? I did not know that they knew that. What a time saver.

      May 14, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
  15. Just me

    If the bible "makes the point" of enslaving blacks, then it makes the point that blacks are the original jews. do they really want to go there, and as for gay marriage, who cares? strait marriage is a mockery it'self.

    May 14, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
    • Raven

      African Americans should be focused on Child Protective Services, single teenage Mothers of five, dead beat dads, diabetes, unemployment, their unbelievably high incarceration rate, their recidivism rate, their drug infested neighborhoods and rap music. They have enough to worry about without pointing fingers at the disproportionately highly educated subgroup of gay Americans who are paying exhorbitant taxes to educate the endless conveyer belt of African American children.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
    • RdWhtNBlu

      Love the Raven post! So true...

      Chris Rock: "Who's more racist, white people or black people? Black people because we hate black people too!" It's the definition of urban sprawl. We keep running from them, they keep running from them too, eventually we are gonna have a two hour commute back to the city for the job coming from the safe mansions we keep building as they keep turning old white neighborhoods into ghettos. Have a nice day!

      May 14, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
    • but...

      What's wrong with rap music? I hope no one out there is wearing polyester...Leviticus has something to say about that.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
    • iheartyou

      Caucasian Americans should be focused on Child Protective Services, single teenage mothers of five, dead beat dads, cancers, unemployment, their unbelievably high serial killer rate, their recidivism rate, their meth-infested neighborhoods and reality TV. They have enough to worry about without pointing fingers at the disproportionately highly educated subgroup of gay Americans who are paying exhorbitant taxes to educate the endless conveyer belt of Caucasian American children, and to fight corrupt politicians and crooked CEO's.

      Works both ways.

      (*see – I can repost vile vitriol too)

      May 14, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
  16. Dennis

    Hypocrisy...How about Romney saying "It's always been between one man and one woman." Says the MORMON!

    May 14, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
    • calkosine

      Don't they typically have like twelve women?

      May 14, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
    • Pat F

      So you are seriously promoting the view is that every Mormon today believes in polygamy, even though it has not been Mormon doctrine for 100 years?

      You are completely busted – you are nothing but a DNC puppet, spreading their filthy lies, religious bigotry and hatred. I hope you can live with yourself, Nazi.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • Flip Romney

      That's what I said last week. Or maybe that was the week before. You know how it is with me, flip flop flip flop until I flop.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • Sting

      PatF, so how come the doctrine had to be changed? God had it wrong again? Although the Christians seem to get away with that one a lot. Look at the wool they pulled with the OT NT thing.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
    • Snow

      ".. even though it has not been Mormon doctrine for 100 years" tell me, how did the doctrine change? did god change his mind? or did the prophet who originally preached it was proven wrong?

      In either case what kind of god/doctrine do you follow that changes its tone at every whim? and how true is the doctrine about every other thing mentioned in it?

      May 14, 2012 at 3:50 pm |
    • Lisa B.

      Grandfather had multiple wives.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:55 pm |
    • AverageJoe76

      LOL – I thought the same thing, myself. Didn't he mean, "one man and multiple women"?

      May 14, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
  17. Gustavo Flores

    This religious people sound so ridiculous, I see the strategy in Mr. President, to make people sound so ridiculous in the 21th century.

    May 14, 2012 at 3:26 pm |
    • James AL

      I think you are wrong, the president did not want anything like this happen. No sound man would upset a major supporting block just to see what happens. He did not want this issue.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
  18. n8263

    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 14, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
    • Dondie

      I'm still floored that a story like this was ever written. Black churches would have been untouchable not too long ago. I guess they are getting their comeuppance.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
    • Sneaky boy

      Good luck with that argument – that's religion as a whole... that IS religion!

      May 14, 2012 at 3:36 pm |
    • Polgie

      Without faith, morality is a relative concept and a tiny bit irrelevant since it's just another one of those "man made inventions". So far, every country that's adopted the official atheist concept have figured that out. The Soviets, N Koreans, and Chinese don't give a flying frack about morality, or human rights vs. the needs of the state. The only reason western atheist get to enjoy such a luxury is that the concept of morality(doing the "right" thing) was forged by people who's morality was sourced from their religions. Atheist just try to remove the deity from the concept. Unless you're an atheist that rules a nation, in which case you just remove the concept entirely and open gulags.

      As for the fear of death or whatever its a flimsy argument. There are faiths that exist that do not really focus on the afterlife much at all. The Jewish torah for example, hardly makes any mention to the afterlife. In Buddhism, you're actually trying to end existence. It's the common argument of Christan-Athiest who spent too much time listening to fire and brim stone speeches by their pastors before they rejected faith. It's a silly argument to make that text that encourages a people to live a certain way is actually all about dying.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • n8263

      @Polgie

      Religous morality is the ultimate in subjectivity because all organized religion comes from man. Everyone takes away his or her own interpretations of the Bible or prayers.

      You are confusing communism with atheism. There are European countries that have non-religious majorities and are doing fine, and that is the trend around the world.

      Even if an afterlife is not discussed much in scripture does mean it is not a major factor for those people.

      Over and over when I talk to Christians about their religion, especially when the topic of doubt comes up, almost always the first thing that comes back is how he or she can not imagine living life believing it will all come to an end when they die, and then how meaningless they think life would be if that was the case. Over and over, West Coast, East Coast, Midwest, young, old, male or female, it does not matter.

      May 14, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
    • Polgie

      That only points to one religion with it's own history and development. Yes, a common theme in Christianity is death and many of those concepts were forged in medieval Europe were untimely death was a frequent occurrence. During that period, the concept of death was pervasive in nearly every form of art and was a common theme explored by all aspects of society. It's only logical that the religion would reflect that focus as well. Other faiths place varying degrees of importance on the after life. In Buddhism, for example, the soul is just another illusion and the actual goal is to release yourself from existence. No doubt many Christians would be against such a concept as that is the exact thing they fear about death. Yet here it's the corner stone of Buddhist beliefs and it's a continued existence that is hell.

      What is common in all faiths is presenting a way to live. A set of rituals and concepts that, when practiced en mass, forms a cohesive society. Concepts of morality are defined within the values of the culture and cemented by it's faith. Yes, there is leeway in beliefs that lead to changes overtime, but the morality forged by faith serves as a starting point for those changes. Even if you're an Atheist American, chances are good you want one spouse. Why? Because the common theme in the American Christian church is that monogamy is good, polygamy is bad. So even if you're an atheist, chances are you'll think it's not right if your wife wanted another husband. However, in other countries it wouldn't be an issue. Even the European nations you have mentioned they've only maintained what they had by continuing to rely on the concepts of morality that were developed when the nation was religious.

      May 14, 2012 at 4:44 pm |
  19. CNNthe best

    It is 100% a civil rights issue. God didn't write the bible, people did. It expresses their beliefs and opinions, not Gods. Only those that have met God can make any judgements about him. No one on earth has met him. The bible is wrong on so many issues, slavery being one. These same arguments were used against ending slavery, interracial marriages, women's role in the world and on and on and on. I'm a Christian but am embarrassed by the Christian rights attack on this subject. We are all God's children and every one of us are made in God's image and it should only be left for God to judge. So during our time here on earth we should do everything we can to treat each other as equals,help and love each other. Why does anyone care what another person does so long as it doesn't harm anyone.

    May 14, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
    • GE

      A Christian who says God didn't write the Bible...talk about a major birdbrain...a Christian who says the Bible is WRONG?!?!!...wow that's serious..

      May 14, 2012 at 3:28 pm |
    • Max

      Life is short. Why would you waste a second on it trying to deny all of its wonder to your neighbor. Christianity is evil.

      May 14, 2012 at 3:30 pm |
    • GE

      @Max....I would believe you when you say "Christianity is evil" when you tell me when has Jesus brought evil on anyone's life......

      May 14, 2012 at 3:54 pm |
    • Tom, Tom the Piper's Son

      @ GE
      This very article shows how Jesus (not his real name btw) is bring used to bring evil upon others. Yet.. he sits up in heaven and doesn’t othing…I mean he is alive right?

      May 14, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
    • GE

      Well why did Governor Pilate find no evil in Jesus at trial?...lemme guess trying to play politics huh like Obama doing huh?....I guess Governor Pliate let declared an "evil" man not guilty letting him get away with blasphemy huh...

      May 14, 2012 at 4:52 pm |
    • Tom, Tom the Piper's Son

      @GE
      The statement was Christianity is evil. Jesus’s direct participation is not required.

      Also the name you are looking for is Pontius Pilate. Using your own mythology to justify itself is par for the course with Christians but hold no water in the real world. Furthermore.. I think a few things have happened in the 2000ish years since the trial… don’t you?

      May 15, 2012 at 8:16 am |
  20. Lila

    Yes and what is up with the comment section?

    May 14, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
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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.