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My Take: The Christian case for gay marriage
The author backs same-sex marriage because of his faith, not in spite of it.
May 19th, 2012
02:00 AM ET

My Take: The Christian case for gay marriage

Editor's Note: Mark Osler is a Professor of Law at the University of St. Thomas in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

By Mark Osler, Special to CNN

I am a Christian, and I am in favor of gay marriage. The reason I am for gay marriage is because of my faith.

What I see in the Bible’s accounts of Jesus and his followers is an insistence that we don’t have the moral authority to deny others the blessing of holy institutions like baptism, communion, and marriage. God, through the Holy Spirit, infuses those moments with life, and it is not ours to either give or deny to others.

A clear instruction on this comes from Simon Peter, the “rock” on whom the church is built. Peter is a captivating figure in the Christian story. Jesus plucks him out of a fishing boat to become a disciple, and time and again he represents us all in learning at the feet of Christ.

During their time together, Peter is often naïve and clueless – he is a follower, constantly learning.

After Jesus is crucified, though, a different Peter emerges, one who is forceful and bold. This is the Peter we see in the Acts of the Apostles, during a fevered debate over whether or not Gentiles should be baptized. Peter was harshly criticized for even eating a meal with those who were uncircumcised; that is, those who did not follow the commands of the Old Testament.

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Peter, though, is strong in confronting those who would deny the sacrament of baptism to the Gentiles, and argues for an acceptance of believers who do not follow the circumcision rules of Leviticus (which is also where we find a condemnation of homosexuality).

His challenge is stark and stunning: Before ordering that the Gentiles be baptized Peter asks “Can anyone withhold the water for baptizing these people who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?”

None of us, Peter says, has the moral authority to deny baptism to those who seek it, even if they do not follow the ancient laws. It is the flooding love of the Holy Spirit, which fell over that entire crowd, sinners and saints alike, that directs otherwise.

My Take: Bible doesn’t condemn homosexuality

It is not our place, it seems, to sort out who should be denied a bond with God and the Holy Spirit of the kind that we find through baptism, communion, and marriage. The water will flow where it will.

Intriguingly, this rule will apply whether we see homosexuality as a sin or not. The water is for all of us. We see the same thing at the Last Supper, as Jesus gives the bread and wine to all who are there—even to Peter, who Jesus said would deny him, and to Judas, who would betray him.

The question before us now is not whether homosexuality is a sin, but whether being gay should be a bar to baptism or communion or marriage.

Your Take: Rethinking the Bible on homosexuality

The answer is in the Bible. Peter and Jesus offer a strikingly inclusive form of love and engagement. They hold out the symbols of Gods’ love to all. How arrogant that we think it is ours to parse out stingily!

I worship at St. Stephens, an Episcopal church in Edina, Minnesota. There is a river that flows around the back and side of that church with a delightful name: Minnehaha Creek. That is where we do baptisms.

The Rector stands in the creek in his robes, the cool water coursing by his feet, and takes an infant into his arms and baptizes her with that same cool water. The congregation sits on the grassy bank and watches, a gentle army.

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At the bottom of the creek, in exactly that spot, is a floor of smooth pebbles. The water rushing by has rubbed off the rough edges, bit by bit, day by day. The pebbles have been transformed by that water into something new.

I suppose that, as Peter put it, someone could try to withhold the waters of baptism there. They could try to stop the river, to keep the water from some of the stones, like a child in the gutter building a barrier against the stream.

It won’t last, though. I would say this to those who would withhold the water of baptism, the joy of worship, or the bonds of marriage: You are less strong than the water, which will flow around you, find its path, and gently erode each wall you try to erect.

The redeeming power of that creek, and of the Holy Spirit, is relentless, making us all into something better and new.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Mark Osler.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Episcopal • Gay marriage • Opinion

soundoff (15,115 Responses)
  1. Spangler

    The word 'abomination' is used 65 times in the OT and 2 times in the NT. The only named abomination in the NT is Luke 16:15 where Jesus calls the love of money an abomination. Many more speeches need to be given about this one.

    May 20, 2012 at 11:34 pm |
  2. southernsugar

    Prism, The book of Daniel is just a makebelieve story. Daniel is just the name of a little boy, in the story. The story is a fabrication. I just read it, last week. Nice story, but get real.

    May 20, 2012 at 11:25 pm |
  3. Reality

    ONLY FOR THE NEWCOMERS:

    Ho-mose-xuality in the 21st century:

    "Abrahamics" believe that their god created all of us and of course that includes the g-ay members of the human race. Also, those who have studied ho-mo-se-xuality have determined that there is no choice involved therefore ga-ys are ga-y because god made them that way.

    To wit:

    o The Royal College of Psy-chiatrists stated in 2007:

    “ Despite almost a century of psy-choanalytic and psy-chological speculation, there is no substantive evidence to support the suggestion that the nature of parenting or early childhood experiences play any role in the formation of a person’s fundamental heteros-exual or hom-ose-xual orientation. It would appear that s-exual orientation is biological in nature, determined by a complex interplay of ge-netic factors and the early ut-erine environment. Se-xual orientation is therefore not a choice.[60] "

    "Garcia-Falgueras and Swaab state in the abstract of their 2010 study, "The fe-tal brain develops during the intraut-erine period in the male direction through a direct action of tes-tosterone on the developing nerve cells, or in the female direction through the absence of this hor-mone surge. In this way, our gender identi-ty (the conviction of belonging to the male or female gender) and s-exual orientation are programmed or organized into our brain structures when we are still in the womb. There is no indication that social environment after birth has an effect on gender ident–ity or s-exual orientation."[8

    See also the Philadelphia Inquirer review “Gay Gene, Deconstructed”, 12/12/2011. Said review addresses the following “How do genes associated with ho-mose-xuality avoid being weeded out by Darwinian evolution?”

    Of course, those gays who belong to Abrahamic religions supposedly abide by the rules of no adu-ltery or for-nication allowed.

    And because of basic biology differences said monogamous ventures should always be called same-se-x unions not same-se-x marriages.

    From below, on top, backwards, forwards, from this side of the Moon and from the other side too, ga-y s-exual activity is still mutual mas-turbation caused by one or more complex s-exual differences. Some differences are visually obvious in for example the complex maleness of DeGeneres, Billy Jean King and Rosie O'Donnell.

    Yes, heteros-exuals practice many of the same "moves" but there is never a doubt who is the female and who is the male.

    May 20, 2012 at 11:24 pm |
    • clinky

      Reality, Since there's such a huge body of literature arguing that orientation is something partly, mostly or completely socialized, or otherwise socially constructed, I find it silly for one researcher with the wave of a hand to dismiss all of that work to the contrary out of hand. Not very scientific to claim there's nothing at all to speak for the opposing side. There are arguments pro and con.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:43 pm |
    • Reality

      Three recent references were noted. Added details:

      1. Philadelphia Inquirer review “Gay Gene, Deconstructed”, 12/12/2011

      2. Garcia-Falgueras A, Swaab DF (2010). "Se-xual Hormones and the Brain: An Essential Alliance for S-exual Ident-ity and Se-xual Orientation". Endocrine Development 17: 22–35. doi:10.1159/000262525. PMID 19955753.

      3. http://www.rcpsych.ac.uk/pdf/Submission%20to%20the%20Church%20of%20England.pdf – 2007

      Please cite your recent references that have opposite conclusions.

      May 21, 2012 at 7:26 am |
  4. Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

    It's so predictable. Self-aggrandizing "Christians" like Rob get their bloomers in a wad when others object to being told they must live according to some belief that is no more sensible than any other belief. The next number in such sanctimonious fools' repertoire is to threaten everyone who doesn't agree with them with eternal damnation.

    Get off it, Rob. You are just one in a long line of nuts who imagine your threats mean anything to people who have the brains you lack.

    May 20, 2012 at 11:24 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      "Self-aggrandizing"

      I give you credit to think anyone of these nuts would begin to understand.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:28 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      My point exactly. The most vociferous, obnoxious zealots here insist that they know exactly what every bible passage means and what god thinks. This, in spite of the fact that religious scholars who've studied all religions for decades disagree on matters of theology. Doesn't matter to them. They can't even figure out how to spell the words they like to use to denigrate those who don't believe exactly what they do and then get pizzy when anyone laughs at their incompetence. Invariably, they threaten eternal damnation and stomp off as Rob has just done.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:34 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      Any insight to as why they behave and think the way they do?

      May 20, 2012 at 11:40 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Most of them are dumber than trout.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:42 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      Actually I know trout are smarter.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:44 pm |
  5. clinky

    Question for straight guys: If a lesbian zombie bites you, do you become:

    a) Gay

    b) Zombie

    c) Girl

    d) Dead

    Do you have any post-bite preference?

    May 20, 2012 at 11:06 pm |
    • TPN51

      I hope it's a girl cause two girls going at it is so hot. LOL

      May 20, 2012 at 11:09 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      All of the above

      May 20, 2012 at 11:11 pm |
    • clinky

      V of R, Swinging not bi, not tri, but quadro.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:14 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      You got that right baby!

      May 20, 2012 at 11:18 pm |
    • Man

      Girl

      May 20, 2012 at 11:32 pm |
  6. rosemarie robson

    Read the holy book of GOD, THE BIBLE, according to GOD in the book of LEVITICUS CHAPTER 18 VERSE 22, THOU SHALT NOT LIE WITH MANKIND, AS WITH WOMANKIND: IT IS ABOMINATION. For whosoever sahll commit any of these abominations, even the souls that commit them shall be cut off from among their people. Therefore shall ye keep mine ordinance, that ye commit not any one of these abominable customs, which were committed before you, and that ye defile not yourselves therein: I AM THE LORD YOUR GOD.. Read LEVITICUS CHAPTER 20 VERSE 13, IF A MAN ALSO LIE WITH MANKIND, AS HE LIETH WITH A WOMAN, BOTH OF THEM HAVE COMMITTED AN ABOMINATION: THEY SHALL SURELY BE PUT TO DEATH; THEIR BOLLD SHALL BE UPON THEM..Read DEUTERONOMY 22 VERSE5-THE WOMAN SHALL NOT WEAR THAT WHICH PERTAINETH UNTO A MAN, NEITHER SHALL A MAN PUT ON A WOMAN'S GARMENT: FOR ALL THAT DO SO ARE ABOMINATION UNTO THE LORD THY GOD. Mark Osler your reading into the BIBLE wrong!!!!!!

    May 20, 2012 at 10:54 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      Hey rosemarie robson! Do you realize that you have a mental disorder?

      May 20, 2012 at 10:58 pm |
    • Edwardo

      Go have another bite of shrimp! Your self-righteous mentality you gleened from a 2,000 year old paperback, written by peyote button eating psychos, is nauseating.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:01 pm |
    • TPN51

      You are so lost sweetie. You are doing a great job of quoting Mosaic Law but have no understanding of the Bible or what your quoting. People like you that use the Bible as a crutch make me glad I gave up religion.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:02 pm |
    • tony

      You can not be a Christian and be for gay marriage. IF so you need to go and re read the BIBLE and find a new church

      May 20, 2012 at 11:06 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      When did God die and put you in charge, tony baloney?

      May 20, 2012 at 11:07 pm |
    • Casey

      rosemarie robson – You quoted Leviticus as condemning h o m o s e x u a l i t y because the Scripture says, "Thou shalt not lie with mankind as with womankind; it is an abomination." As a gay man, I do not have s e x with women, I have s e x with men. Thus, I do not lie with mankind as with womankind. This Scripture was not intended to condemn h o m o s e x u a l i t y.

      By the way, Leviticus also forbids wearing clothes made of two fabrics and says we should stone children who disrespect their parents. You had better check your closet and supply of stones.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:20 pm |
    • Edwardo

      Casey – good post! When Xtians quote Leviticus, I just about crap my britches. Leviticus also said bats were birds. Leviticus was a womanizing P.O.S., and his chapter, added to that horrid book.. really really was its weakest link.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:24 pm |
    • Rob

      Voice of reason just has their own reasons and is not that reasonable really...just another critic..Tom Tom is just another waste of oxygen banging anyone and anything he cannot believe or refuses to believe...so much for a free country it seems...no right to free speech if you believe in a God.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:35 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Robby, didn't you say you were leaving? How can we miss you if you don't go away? Take your ball and go home. While you're there, look up a few words in the dictionary so you can look like something other than a fool when you try to use them to argue a point.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:38 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      "No right to free speech if you believe in God." You moron, nobody said you couldn't speak or write whatever you want. Who's stopping you? You can continue to write about "principals" and "hypocracy" if you want, but others have every right to ridicule you for being dumb when you do.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:40 pm |
    • George A. Klein

      Why do Christians always quote the OLD testament when they can't find the hate and discrimination they seek in the NEW testament? The original Christians REJECTED the old testament, that is why there is a new testament.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:42 pm |
    • GodFreeNow

      2 problems here rosemarie,

      1) there is no biblical edict against lesbians, god must be okay with women marrying each other... in fact, that brings me to point 2...

      2) if you cannot lie with mankind as you do womenkind, then by that reading women MUST lie with womenkind because they are forbidden to lie with mankind.

      Seems like god enjoys watching lesbians as much as the rest of us.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:44 pm |
    • DeeCee1000

      RoseMary, you should go picket or burn down all the Red Lobster restaurants in this country. . . your "bible" clearly states that your God really hates it when us lowly humans eat shellfish! It's an "abomination" to your God! Quick, gather up the congregation and go picket Red Lobster! If they refuse to shut down, burn their dens of iniquity down to the ground! That'll show 'em! . . .but hurry! For the time is nigh!

      May 20, 2012 at 11:47 pm |
    • GodFreeNow

      @DeeCee1000, Don't tempt her... this girl's about 1 bible study short of an abortion clinic bombing.

      May 21, 2012 at 12:21 am |
    • DragonSlayer Lights Your Fire

      this is getting so comical now. Every time some quotes the same lame bible scripture get better back lash from the opposing team. This is great.

      ***Breaks out the Popcorn***

      May 21, 2012 at 1:10 am |
  7. bibi

    No human being, principality or power will forever be able to deny Christ and his teachings without consequence.

    May 20, 2012 at 10:52 pm |
    • Wrath of Zeus

      Fvck god, Jesus and the bible. I will suffer no consequences for it. You imaginary deity has no power. So eat a sh•t.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:54 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      Hey bibi! Do you realize that you have a mental disorder?

      May 20, 2012 at 10:59 pm |
    • Edwardo

      So your god feels loved, by holding a gun to someone's head, then forcing them to profess their love to him? Your god is psychotic!

      May 20, 2012 at 11:02 pm |
    • TPN51

      Show me actual proof Jesus existed. Not some mind game to control the masses.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:05 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      You go TPN51!

      May 20, 2012 at 11:09 pm |
    • Beastlymaster

      TPN51, Prove to me there is no God.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:15 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Prove there are no unicorns, sh!twit. When will you dolts buy a clue?

      May 20, 2012 at 11:16 pm |
    • TPN51

      Beastlymaster, Your God DEMANDS NO OTHER GODS. If he is the creator there would only be one following. But there is not. Many different religions, many different beliefs, all too contradictory to ONE GOD. Science has more proof of the beginning then any church on the planet and without getting into quantum mechanics here, go look it up. Sorry pal, no god, no Jesus and of course we have good old Noah who in the Bible lived 800 years, right they got me sold on that one.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:22 pm |
    • DeeCee1000

      Oooooo. Your all-powerful god is so scary! Just look at how he's punishing all those evil little babies all over the world by making them starve to death. That'll show 'em! Your god is so awesome!

      May 20, 2012 at 11:51 pm |
    • DragonSlayer Lights Your Fire

      guess I'm not human now because God doesn't exist to me and I don't care :(

      HAHAHAH
      Sit down Zombie

      May 21, 2012 at 1:11 am |
  8. nokat

    Mark Osler, professor of law ??

    his laws ARE NOT in the BIBLE

    May 20, 2012 at 10:44 pm |
    • Wrath of Zeus

      And the bible is not the law, never should be.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:52 pm |
    • DragonSlayer Lights Your Fire

      See!! Christians want to fight with everybody, including their own people

      Gotta Love-to-Hate Christians

      Just a bunch of clowns in a circus.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:13 am |
  9. Wrath of Zeus

    Jesus started the trend of inserting rods in the urethra. True story, its in the bible.

    May 20, 2012 at 10:44 pm |
    • Old Timer

      He probably learned it from the Egyptians:
      (It has been suggested that he spent time in Egypt learning magic and stuff)

      The earliest precursor to the present day Foley catheter is doc'umented in 3000 B.C. It is believed that Egyptians used metal pipes to perform bladder catheterizations.

      http://www.madehow.com/Volume-7/Catheter.html

      May 20, 2012 at 10:51 pm |
  10. Ramon F. Herrera

    Which is the party where hatred is most concentrated and distilled, one wonders?

    The only ones qualified to make a statement are the victims of prejudice, discrimination, persecution and racism themselves. Let's ask them, shall we?

    Here's their response:

    – Black folks voted for Obama, by a 98% margin.
    – Jewish folks voted for Obama, by a 75% margin.
    – Hispanic folks voted for Obama, by a 66% margin.
    – Asian folks voted for Obama, by a 63% margin.
    – Gay folks voted for Obama, by an unknown margin.

    ps: Oh, I almost forgot the largest minority of all:

    http://patriot. net/~ramon/misc/GOP-Hates-Women-and-Feeling-is-Mutual. jpg
    http://www. usatoday. com/news/politics/story/2012-04-01/swing-states-poll/53930684/1

    (remove spaces)

    May 20, 2012 at 10:42 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      Ramon, I'm trying to connect your thoughts, can you just make a statement that we can understand?

      May 20, 2012 at 10:45 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      That would likely be a first.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:05 pm |
  11. Disgusted

    I wish they would just turn comments off on news sites. The media made a very foolish error when they assumed the opinions of 99% of Americans were worth hearing.

    May 20, 2012 at 10:36 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      Don't put your head in the sand bro!

      May 20, 2012 at 10:38 pm |
    • Ramon F. Herrera

      I just saw this in the Website Disclaimer:

      "Anybody who disagrees with the CNN editorial lines or forum policies, can go to Faux themselves:

      http://www. foxnews. com

      May 20, 2012 at 10:43 pm |
    • DeeCee1000

      Whaaaahhh? You don't like social media? What's wrong with people discussing things?. . .as long it isn't a "news" media that's being run by neo-nazis like "Fox Nation". THAT website should just go ahead and change it's name and logo to include a swastika and pictures of Hitler Youth.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:44 pm |
    • Ramon F. Herrera

      Let's make a deal, Mr. Disgusted:

      You don't click, we do not publish. Fair?

      Signed: CNN and the rest of INTERACTIVE media

      May 20, 2012 at 10:44 pm |
    • tallulah13

      The First Amendment of the United States Consti.tution protects freedom of speech in this country. I'm glad that CNN provides a forum where opinions can be aired, even opinions that disagree with my own.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:51 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      @tallulah13

      Spot on!

      May 20, 2012 at 11:01 pm |
    • Lily

      I agree. They re d e l e t i n g mine, anyway.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:44 pm |
  12. Todd

    I must say that the Church has missed the point here. As a follower of Jesus, I agree with many points that the author makes but disagree with his conclusions. The Lord's table IS open to ALL, His grace is given for ALL, His blood was shed for ALL, etc. And it is the work of the Holy Spirit to convict and work in us went we stray from God's will and plan. Jesus was not a nice guy, offering good advice and doing nice things for people. He was God sent from Heaven, made man to show us a better way-God's way. He came calling people to repent-to return to God. He offered forgiveness of sin through belief in His death and ressurection. I don't care what your story is, what sins you've committed or burdens you bear-if you truly accept Jesus into your heart and He is now your Lord of ALL of your life. Then you have died and are born again in Christ alone! The old is gone. There is no believer that would not struggle with powerful conviction knowing that there actions continued to effectively put Jesus back on the cross!
    Every bible believing and teaching church should have their doors open for ANYONE but ANYONE entering should be ready to deal with their sin as God is Holy and cannot be in the prescence of sin. God wants to santify you, to make you holy and reedem the relationship between you and Him.
    Marriage will always be between God, a man and a woman. The government has no place in it, none. That's the mistake that has been made. Unless we all agree that we want a theocracy in this country (which I would be totally for-everyone is a believer and saved!!! God would certainly manifest Himself here!) we will continue as a democratic republic that is open to all beliefs BUT separates the powers of church and state, i.e. the King is the head of the church-England or the Pope is the head of the Holy Roman Empire-Catholics. So truly the government needs to get out of the way-no more marriage licenses issued, no more tax breaks. If two men or two women want to live together and even find a "church" that would "marry" them, they can do that but where does it stop. I want to marry my dog, I want to have three husbands, a 30 y.o woman with a 14 y.o. man. As a society we have to have boundaries and structure or we cease to be a society, it is just chaos. Certainly not of God.

    May 20, 2012 at 10:34 pm |
    • Colin

      Todd, I'm sure you"ve noticed that God seems to love all the same things you love and hate all the same things you hate. Ever wondered why?

      May 20, 2012 at 10:38 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      Does this Todd guy make any sense?

      May 20, 2012 at 10:42 pm |
    • Todd

      Colin-to be honest, it wasn't always like that. The majority of my life I keep saying to myself "Why can't I just have things my way?" I used to have no problem with abortion or capital punishment-I do now, my eyes have been opened and my heart is no longer hard. I don't want to see people lost in a world without hope or feeling alone.
      I'm not a 100% sure where you're going with your reply, I don't really see everything in black and white. Right and wrong, yes. God's will and my will, yes I must admit God's ways to me are a mystery to me, can't quite wrap my head around them sometimes. BUT I have seen Him work in my life, I've asked Him for help and mercy and He responded-directly. I have heard and read others accounts and testimonies to the same. I have read it in His word, how He keeps his promises.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:50 pm |
    • Todd

      Voice-where did I lose you? Perhaps I could clarify...

      May 20, 2012 at 10:50 pm |
    • Edwardo

      Todd – You really, truly are brain-washed. Your comment about us living in a theocracy, and assuming "we all need/want to be saved", is just bizarre. I wouldn't worship your blood=thirsty god, even if you proved he existed (which you won't, because he doesn't).

      May 20, 2012 at 10:52 pm |
    • Todd

      Edwardo-I'm sorry you feel that way but honestly I came to this on my own-Jesus was knocking for a long time and I finally opened the door to let him. I struggled with Jesus's divinity too but I couldn't deny what has occured in my life after surrending to Him. My comment about a theocracy was making the point that America was not set up as such but that a country which lived to love and honor God would be-Awesome! I assure you that the Living God is not blood thirsty but HE is jealous. He desires a relationship with you (and everyone) because we were created to serve and worship Him. Yes, we live in a broken world and need salvation. We are lost if we do not return to the Creator who loves us. Tell you what, ask God to prove it to you. Humbly and respectfully ask Jesus to reveal Himself to you-You too will see how real He is and how He Lives!

      May 20, 2012 at 11:02 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      Wow Todd, you really are into this stuff. I really don't know what to say, but maybe you should go see a medical professional.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:08 pm |
    • Edwardo

      Todd – Jesus was knocking on your door? What does that mean? You were hearing voices? Your mentioned "surrendered". So, you had to surrender, because you were beaten to submission? Why does your narcisstiic god desire worship and praise? A perfect being desires nothing, it needs nothing. He "wants a relationship" with me? How about stopping all the riddles, and just popping by my house, and tell me what he wants. He can do anything, right? Your god drowns babies in great floods, he destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah (you don't think there were babies in that city? OH, he's blood -thirsty all right.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:09 pm |
    • PRISM 1234

      Todd, thank you for posting....

      Peace and blessing of our Lord be with you!

      May 20, 2012 at 11:10 pm |
    • DeeCee1000

      Todd. . .what. the. hell. is going on with you? It looks like you need to go make an appointment with a good therapist. First of all, my marriage has n.o.t.h.i.n.g to do with you "beliefs". You can worship spaghetti for all I care. I really don't care what or who you choose to worship. There is a very long list of "gods"; some uncannily similar to "Jesus" btw, take your pick. If you feel like you need an invisible friend. . .not that big of a deal. We all deal with life's problems in one way or another. . .but don't expect everyone to believe what you believe and definitely don't expect for gays to have to give up their civil rights for your fairy tale friend. Good luck. People like you will need it.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:19 pm |
    • Todd

      Voice-You are spot on, I am really into Jesus! I was really sick with sin for a long time in my life, did a lot of really bad things. I'm sorry that you are at a loss for words but I respect where you are coming from. Your name on here "Voice of Reason"...I believe is an insight into who you are-you're looking for truth and are a skeptic. That's a good place to be it tells me your searching for what is REAL and I hope you find it, I really do. The world has become dark, the truth traded for a lie. Very sad but there is hope. I will be praying for you in your seeking out the truth. Have a good night!

      May 20, 2012 at 11:26 pm |
    • Todd

      Edwardo-I sincerely apologize if I angered you, that was not my intent. Yes, Jesus was knocking at the door to my heart. Mine was certainly closed and guarded. Too much hurt, loss and pain in this world. Yes, I certainly did submit and yes just like a MMA fight. You see I pressed on and on to do everything myself and for myself, the only narcassist was me.
      God doesn't so much desire praise as He deserves it. You're right He certainly doesn't need me but you know what He wants me. He wants to love me, like no one else has or can. He loves me unconditionally, He wants to help me be more, be better.
      Yes, Edwardo, He really wants a relationship with you? No riddles, no tricks, no hype. HE WANTS YOUR HEART! He wants you to stop everything else, put everything else in your life aside, stop looking at everything through your eyes and start living your new life for Him.
      God has certainly judged others before and He will continue to do so. I accept that He is God. If i die tonight, I too will seat in the judgment seat but Jesus will stand and defend me, He will tell the Father in Heaven that I am His and how my sins have been washed away by Jesus' blood-I will stand before God righteous not because of what I did or didn't do but because I believed and trusted in Him!! You see I don't want to keep this too myself, in fact I don't even know you but I know what I've done and what is in the hearts of people and I believe you are no different than me-I sincerely point you to the Cross-where there is peace, salvation and hope. If I never meet you here, I hope to in heaven...

      May 20, 2012 at 11:44 pm |
    • DeeCee1000

      Todd. . .what does your belief in your invisible friend have to do with my civil marriage?

      May 20, 2012 at 11:54 pm |
    • Bet

      Todd, you bring up the same ridiculous argument that all christians regurgitate. "What if a man wants to marry his dog?" Have you ever heard of consent? Two consenting adults should have the same human rights no matter if they are the same gender or not. A dog cannot consent. A child can't consent.

      And Solomon had 700 wives and 300 concubines, but apparently your god didn't care about that.

      May 21, 2012 at 1:55 am |
  13. Mia

    What does baptism have to do with any of this? One can be just as close to God as a single person than as a married person. No one is trying to deny anyone else salvation. The bible is very clear on what marriage is, "Jesus replied. “But at the beginning of creation God ‘made them male and female.’ ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” Mark 10:5b-9. Quit trying to confuse the argument by saying that Christians want to deny people access to God! It's simply not true.

    May 20, 2012 at 10:33 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      How do you know all of this?

      May 20, 2012 at 10:37 pm |
    • Edwardo

      Oh, I believe you want to get me access to your god. Oh yeh! You Xtians are always ready to recruit someone. That's what religions do.. they must infect others, or they would perish like all the religions that came before them.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:54 pm |
  14. Rob

    I guess it is perfectly okay for everyone to hate, condemn, criticize and insult Christians in this country...what a bunch of hypocrites you are...and you call Christians that? Go look in the mirror and practice what you preach!

    May 20, 2012 at 10:33 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      Care to expand on that thought?

      May 20, 2012 at 10:34 pm |
    • Rob

      just look at the hate filled comments that fill this comment page...it is disgusting what many of the posts say...in addition, it is very acceptable to post what Christians would consider blasphemous statements on this. Despite what many of the people out there want to think, the country was founded on Christian principals and just because today the selfish, self destructive, hate filled, drug addled heathens seem to rule, it does not change that foundation. Go ahead and blaspheme, enjoy it while you can...enjoy your hypocritical ravings of hatred laced filth against Christianity and anyone who opposes your limited world view...one day you will be on the ground bowing before God and wondering where you went wrong and how you can manipulate things into your arriving in some sort of reward...you will get a rude awakening. God is a God of love, but also of justice and judgement. He has stated what His truth is and if you want to mock it, prepare for your own judgement.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:46 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      Rob, I think you should read your last post to me and see the love that god has given you.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:50 pm |
    • Edwardo

      Nothing like using anger, to condemn anger!

      May 20, 2012 at 10:56 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      @Edwardo

      All I did was ask Rob to expand on his post and he flipped!

      May 20, 2012 at 11:03 pm |
    • DeeCee1000

      Rob is still p o'd that Christians are no longer allowed to hold Inquisitions or use instruments of torture on the non-believers. Jeeez Rob. . .don't you think it's about time you move on? The good old days of the Inquisitions AREN'T coming back! If you can't stand watching your religion being criticized in a free society by free thinking adults, go live in a church without any access to the public or something. Have you thought about monastic life?

      May 20, 2012 at 11:10 pm |
    • Edwardo

      @Voice of Reason – hey voice... that means you have successfully called this Rob person on the carpet for some of his comments. Good job!

      May 20, 2012 at 11:15 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Hey, Rob, what "principals" would those be? Was it Principal Skinner from the Simpsons?

      You people are hilarious, pretending to be scholars of the bible when you can barely manage to write a simple sentence.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:18 pm |
    • Rob

      this is what I expected...to get flamed...well, tired of casting pearls before swine...enjoy your own hypocracy and your petty lives, your continued hatred is expected, but very sad, you will never try to protect a Christian;s life, you will rather try to end it.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:27 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      It's "hypocrisy", you stupid git. Why should anyone take you for anything but a joke?

      May 20, 2012 at 11:30 pm |
    • Rob

      You would know Tom, you do it so well!

      May 20, 2012 at 11:37 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      You make bowling balls look brilliant, Robby.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:41 pm |
    • DragonSlayer Lights Your Fire

      we call it like we see it

      May 21, 2012 at 1:15 am |
    • Bet

      This country was not founded on christian principles. That is a lie. The First Amendment states "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof ...."

      The founding fathers were adamant that the government would be wholly secular. Thomas Jefferson wrote, "I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should 'make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,' thus building a wall of separation between Church & State.

      May 21, 2012 at 2:11 am |
  15. Ramon F. Herrera

    When it comes to child abuse and molestation -specially of their own- Republican politicians have a Guinness World Record:

    http://www.republican6offenders.com/ (replace the number 6 with the obvious 3 letters)

    Feel free to Google the list above, one name at a time, and I dare you to compile an equivalent list composed of liberal politicos.

    May 20, 2012 at 10:27 pm |
    • Wrath of Zeus

      They learned it from Jesus. He molested a ton of children. Michael Jackson learned to drug kids with wine from Jesus.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:30 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      Ramon, While I can appreciate your sentiment, let's make sure when claiming absolutes that we can prove them.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:32 pm |
    • Ramon F. Herrera

      "let's make sure when claiming absolutes"

      I'll make sure to verify it, next time I speak with God!

      More seriously, why can't far conservs (aka hatters) even consider that God created home6 for a reason?

      May 20, 2012 at 10:36 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      You just proved my point:

      "More seriously, why can't far conservs (aka hatters) even consider that God created home6 for a reason?"

      May 20, 2012 at 10:39 pm |
    • Ramon F. Herrera

      "let's make sure when claiming absolutes that we can prove them."

      Just Google that list one at a time – Can you find any made-up person?

      Where is your list of liberal politicos? I cannot compile it for you, one reason being it does not exist (not this long, anyway). Just prove me wrong!

      May 20, 2012 at 10:40 pm |
  16. revbates

    Excellent. Most Christians overlook the fact that Jesus was a spiritual genius and understood the intertwining of spiritual law and the laws of nature. Which is why He stated that "it rains on the good and the evil" because both good and evil are man-made opinions, not of the Love of God.

    May 20, 2012 at 10:23 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      ?

      May 20, 2012 at 10:25 pm |
    • True Story

      What kind of spiritual genius would kill a tree because he wanted fruit and it wasn't in season?
      Sounds more like a stupid vicious brat than a spiritual genius.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:27 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      That da*mn fig tree will do it every time!

      May 20, 2012 at 10:29 pm |
    • DeeCee1000

      Your "spiritual genius" Jesus was a copy-cat big-time. He copied other gods big-time. You should look it up some time. . .if you dare!

      May 20, 2012 at 11:01 pm |
  17. n8263

    Christians think Sharia Law is immoral but impose their own Sharia Law in America. No matter what version, it's immoral to impose your religious superstition and deny others civil rights.

    May 20, 2012 at 10:22 pm |
    • Wrath of Zeus

      Or shoot hot loads into a horses butt orifice.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:27 pm |
  18. Alien Orifice

    Flip Flop
    I consulted my 11 year old daughter on Flip Flop today. This morning, Flip Flop was feeling good today. Later however, Flip Flop was sad. Not sure why. But we do know that Flip Flop is in Alabama and will be coming to California this summer.

    May 20, 2012 at 10:20 pm |
  19. PON

    Could someone please tell me how in the world baptism and marriage are the same??? They are not comparable in any way shape or form! Apples and oranges anyone? Or is that too deep for this guy? C'mon, the whole article is a farce because its based on the premise that baptism and marriage are similar, they are not. Baptism is indeed for all believers, Marriage is for individual couples of believers, providing one of them is female and one of them is male. There, pretty simple really. My 5th grade Sunday School students understand this better than Mr Osler, amazing!

    May 20, 2012 at 10:20 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      I was baptized when I was just weeks old, do you think I knew? Child abuse.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:22 pm |
    • True Story

      when a post has the phrase "pretty simple really" in it, you can bet the poster will be an idiot.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:24 pm |
    • BamaDaniel

      I believe my girl donkey will love me long time, good enough

      May 20, 2012 at 10:25 pm |
    • Truth7

      Voice of unreason – your rejection of God and your hatred of Him reveal that you live in the darkness and have accepted it. God can heal.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:26 pm |
    • revbates

      Marriage is a "sacrament" just as baptism is. And not all religions use the one-man-one-woman Christian rule for administering this sacrament. The history of marriage is filled with diversity. Even presidential candidate Mitt Romney's grandfather had 5 wives and his great-grandfather had 6 and this happened in the U.S.A.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:27 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      @Truth7

      Heal what?

      May 20, 2012 at 10:28 pm |
    • tallulah13

      Marriage is older than christianity, therefore any comparison to other christian rites is moot.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:44 pm |
  20. jerry brandt

    The bible says that in the last days deceivers will come. Mr. Osler would like to lead you away from God's truth. Nice try but I'm not willing to be my soul on mr. osler's lies.

    May 20, 2012 at 10:15 pm |
    • blah blah blah

      the bible's a big stack of horse sh!t.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:19 pm |
    • BamaDaniel

      Don't bet your soul on anybodies lies.PS your misinformed pastor

      May 20, 2012 at 10:20 pm |
    • Wrath of Zeus

      Jesus was the only man during his time able to fit a man's fist and forearm all the way in his stretched out butt hole.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:23 pm |
    • Voice of Reason

      So, Jerry, the bible is your truth and reality?

      May 20, 2012 at 10:23 pm |
    • Ramon F. Herrera

      Dear Son Jerry:

      This is the 11th. Commandment:

      Thou Shalt Not Use My Name to Spread hatred.

      - God

      May 20, 2012 at 10:23 pm |
    • tallulah13

      Christians have been claiming that the end times are near for about 2000 years. Jesus himself said that those he preached to would still be alive at the time of his return. Maybe your sky is falling, jerry, but there is no rational reason to believe that the world will end any time soon.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:47 pm |
    • PRISM 1234

      Wee are seeing things foretold in the Bible being fulfilled before our very eyes. I am amazed at the corruption of human character I have witnessed in my short lifetime only..... I've never thought in my early that humans are capable of being so corrupt and brazenly unashamed, calling evil good, and good evil as we are seeing today. But our Lord said it would be so. By observing of the world stage on God's timeline, with all the man's advancements in tech and science, yet such corruption of human character, it only points to the fact that the time for the "man of sin" is at hand and his army is being prepared, for time of his arrival. We are seeing in our day history in the making!
      I believe this generation of people will see what was foretold In the Book of Daniel ......

      "And in the latter time of their kingdom,
      When the transgressors have reached their fullness,
      A king shall arise,
      Having fierce features,
      Who understands sinister schemes.
      His power shall be mighty, but not by his own power;
      He shall destroy fearfully,
      And shall prosper and thrive;
      He shall destroy the mighty, and also the holy people.
      “Through his cunning
      He shall cause deceit to prosper under his rule
      And he shall exalt himself in his heart.
      He shall destroy many in their prosperity.
      He shall even rise against the Prince of princes;
      But he shall be broken without human means.

      “And the vision of the evenings and mornings
      Which was told is true;
      Therefore seal up the vision,
      For it refers to many days in the future" (Daniel 8:23-26)

      And he said, “Go your way, Daniel, for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end. 10 Many shall be purified, made white, and refined, but the wicked shall do wickedly; and none of the wicked shall understand, but the wise shall understand" (Daniel 12:9,10)
      And this is the Word of the LORD which shall not fail!

      May 20, 2012 at 10:52 pm |
    • DeeCee1000

      That's fine Jerry, you just stick to your hatred, bigotry and ignorance. . .so what if you're on the wrong side of history. . .as long as you have the right to be a hateful, bigoted ignoramus, that's all that counts.

      May 20, 2012 at 10:52 pm |
    • DeeCee1000

      Prism, was that before or after the talking snake?

      May 20, 2012 at 10:53 pm |
    • DeeCee1000

      Prism. . .that's really tired and really old. You people have been saying the same exact thing for 2000 yrs now. Yawwwwwwwn. Have you thought about getting a life?

      May 20, 2012 at 10:55 pm |
    • PRISM 1234

      P.S Notice second line of Scripture is Daniel

      ******When the transgressors have reached their fullness******
      He will let them have their way!

      That's WHY God in His wisdom is patiently waiting....

      May 20, 2012 at 10:58 pm |
    • PRISM 1234

      You can't outdo the wisdom of God. When you think you've got it all figured out in your own lame intellect, on the end of your every path, He'll be there waiting for you! And when is all said and done, you'll know that you messed up very badly, friend!

      May 20, 2012 at 11:02 pm |
    • DeeCee1000

      Oooooh Prism, you make your God sound so scary! THAT will surely draw people to him. Come worship my scary sadistic god! All are welcome! He's the biggest mass murderer in the history of the world. . .just look at how he killed almost all of humanity during the time of "Noah"! He takes great pride in being all-powerful and all-knowing. . .and crushing those little humans as if they were ants. That's the sign of a really good God! All are welcome to come worship him! He's AWESOME!

      May 20, 2012 at 11:27 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      They always remind me of the abusive pet owners who call their dogs and offer them treats, and then proceed to kick them because the poor dog didn't run back to them fast enough to suit them.

      May 20, 2012 at 11:28 pm |
    • DragonSlayer Lights Your Fire

      @PRISM 1234

      I'm shaking in the boots now

      I'm scared...God will judge me when I do

      HAHAHAH
      Sit down Zombie

      May 21, 2012 at 1:49 am |
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About this blog

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