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October 9th, 2012
12:01 AM ET

Survey: One in five Americans has no religion

Editor's note: CNN recently won four first-place reporting awards from the Religion Newswriters Association. Read more about the awards here.

By Dan Merica, CNN

Washington (CNN) – The fastest growing "religious" group in America is made up of people with no religion at all, according to a Pew survey showing that one in five Americans is not affiliated with any religion.

The number of these Americans has grown by 25% just in the past five years, according to a survey released Tuesday by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life.

The survey found that the ranks of the unaffiliated are growing even faster among younger Americans.

Thirty-three million Americans now have no religious affiliation, with 13 million in that group identifying as either atheist or agnostic, according to the new survey.

Pew found that those who are religiously unaffiliated are strikingly less religious than the public at large. They attend church infrequently, if at all, are largely not seeking out religion and say that the lack of it in their lives is of little importance.

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And yet Pew found that 68% of the religiously unaffiliated say they believe in God, while 37% describe themselves as “spiritual” but not “religious.” One in five said that they even pray every day.

John Green, a senior research adviser at Pew, breaks the religiously unaffiliated into three groups. First, he says, are those who were raised totally outside organized religion.

Survey: Protestants no longer majority in U.S.

Second are groups of people who were unhappy with their religions and left.

The third group, Green says, comprises Americans who were never really engaged with religion in the first place, even though they were raised in religious households.

“In the past, we would describe those people as nominally affiliated. They might say, 'I am Catholic; I am a Baptist,' but they never went" to services, Green says of this last group. “Now, they feel a lot more comfortable just saying, ‘You know, I am really nothing.’ ”

According to the poll, 88% of religiously unaffiliated people are not looking for religion.

“There is much less of a stigma attached" to not being religious, Green said. “Part of what is fueling this growth is that a lot of people who were never very religious now feel comfortable saying that they don't have an affiliation.”

Demographically, the growth among the religiously unaffiliated has been most notable among people who are 18 to 29 years old.

According to the poll, 34% of “younger millennials” - those born between 1990 and 1994 - are religiously unaffiliated. Among “older millennials,” born between 1981 and 1989, 30% are religiously unaffiliated: 4 percentage points higher than in 2007.

Poll respondents 18-29 were also more likely to identify as atheist or agnostic. Nearly 42% religious unaffiliated people from that age group identified as atheist or agnostic, a number far greater than the number who identified as Christian (18%) of Catholic (18%).

Green says that these numbers are “part of a broader change in American society.”

“The unaffiliated have become a more distinct group,” he said.

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

Pew's numbers were met with elation among atheist and secular leaders. Jesse Galef, communications director for the Secular Student Alliance, said that the growth of the unaffiliated should translate into greater political representation for secular interests.

“We would love to see the political leaders lead on this issue, but we are perfectly content with them following these demographic trends, following the voters,” Galef said.

“As more of the voters are unaffiliated and identifying as atheist and agnostics, I think the politicians will follow that for votes.

“We won’t be dismissed or ignored anymore,” Galef said.

The Pew survey suggested that the Democratic Party would do well to recognize the growth of the unaffiliated, since 63% of them identify with or lean toward that political group. Only 26% of the unaffiliated do the same with the Republican Party.

"In the near future, if not this year, the unaffiliated voters will be as important as the traditionally religious are to the Republican Party collation,” Green predicted.

Green points to the 2008 exit polls as evidence for that prediction. That year, Republican presidential nominee John McCain beat President Barack Obama by 47 points among white evangelical voters, while Obama had a 52-point margin of victory over McCain among the religiously unaffiliated.

According to exit polls, the proportion of religiously unaffiliated Americans who supported the Democratic presidential candidate grew 14 points from 2000 to 2008.

In announcing the survey’s findings at the Religion Newswriters Association conference in Bethesda, Maryland, Green said the growing political power of the unaffiliated within the Democratic Party could become similar to the power the Religious Right acquired in the GOP in the 1980s.

“Given the growing numbers of the unaffiliated, there is the potential that that could be harnessed,” he said.

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • Politics • Polls

soundoff (7,763 Responses)
  1. clinky

    Sounds to me like you're a bit programmed yourself by your anger and intolerance for difference, Luis. You don't have all the answers. Sheila didn't say that she does and spoke humbly.

    October 9, 2012 at 1:57 pm |
    • Luis Wu

      If I have anger, it's because I'm sick and tired of Christians trying to force their ignorant nonsense on me through legislation. I'm sick of their holding back science and trying to teach archaic mythology as science. And Christians invented the word intolerant. They are the most intolerant people on the face of the planet. They don't mind putting down all of the other religions of the world but let someone speak out against them and they scream bloody murder. Try using your brain for a change.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
    • clinky

      Luis, Doesn't Sheila's post demonstrate to you that there are all different kinds of Christian people? She was inclusive and tolerant. On the other hand, your slogan "Use a brain for a change" is arrogant.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
    • End Religion

      there is no higher act of arrogance than to pray to a god

      October 9, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
  2. liz

    Move to the Deep South. You will never meet so many who claim a devotion to an organized religioin yet never attend church

    October 9, 2012 at 1:57 pm |
  3. GOOD NEWS

    Jesus said:
    For this is the will of my Lord,
    that everyone who sees the Son (of Man) and believes in him
    may have eternal Life!
    And (my Lord said:) I shall raise him on the Last DAY (=MILLENNIUM)! (John 6/40)

    So that "Son of Man" has thus already come now to seek and save those who are lost,

    in the beginning of this most critical Third and Last DAY (=MILLENNIUM) now! (Luke 19/10 = John 6/27, 40)

    http://www.holy-19-harvest.com

    ==UNIVERSAL MAGNIFICENT MIRACLES!

    October 9, 2012 at 1:57 pm |
    • Luis Wu

      Blah blah blah blah blah to you too. Try THINKING for a change instead of blindly accepting ancient mythology and primitive superst!tions as fact.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:02 pm |
    • lamb of dog

      Or UMM?

      October 9, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
    • lamb of dog

      Umm.......umm........umm.....

      October 9, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
    • jesus christ

      1 Timothy 2:12

      I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
  4. robert

    The best news I've heard in a while. It has taken a while but we are finally coming out of the dark ages.

    October 9, 2012 at 1:57 pm |
    • PJ

      We will be out of the dark ages when Obama is out of the white house.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
    • djhbutler

      thank god we are losing our religion!

      October 9, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
    • The Truth

      @PJ – fvck you you racist pig. The "Dark" ages because Obama's black, ha ha, i get it, you mindless republican zombie. I'd give you some rope to hang yourself but i'm afraid you might try and start lynching anyone with dark skin again, so I guess it's a padded room for you.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
  5. hINDUISM RACISM OF hINDU'S, CRIMINALS BY FAITH EXPOSED

    Jean Lash-----–Explain your hinduism, absurdity please, what do you mean by begotten?

    October 9, 2012 at 1:56 pm |
  6. Mike D

    "When I do good, I feel good; when I do bad, I feel bad. That's my religion." – Abraham Lincoln

    October 9, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
  7. Gypsy

    The "Toilet Paper Religion" is the one true religion because it's written right here on this piece of toilet paper. The toilet paper says so, I believe it and that's all there is to it.

    That's how stupid quoting biblical quotes sounds to the sane.

    October 9, 2012 at 1:54 pm |
  8. Cari

    God is real! Jesus is real! It is the different religious demonminations that have separated us all. We are all trying to reach for a higher power. Each human being thinks their religion is the correct way.... As long as you develop a relationship w/ Christ that is all that matters. So, tonight when I go home & say my prayers I will make sure to say a special prayer for all of you who don't know him & pray that you find him soon.

    October 9, 2012 at 1:54 pm |
    • yeahalright

      So in other words you're going to hope really really really hard, maybe with your hands together even because I hear that helps with wishful thinking, that we all take up your fantasy?

      October 9, 2012 at 1:57 pm |
    • hINDUISM RACISM OF hINDU'S, CRIMINALS BY FAITH EXPOSED

      No one ever existed by the name of Jesus, but by hinduism, fabrication of hindu Jew's, criminal secular's, proven by history, Jesus is not a name by any account of language.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:58 pm |
    • mk

      Thank god you're going to pray for my poor pathetic self, Cari. I'm so, so lost!

      October 9, 2012 at 1:59 pm |
    • Luis Wu

      You live in a fantasy world.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:03 pm |
    • Ooooh

      Ooooh, a "special" prayer, Cari?... as opposed to all of the other blah and humdrum ones, eh?

      October 9, 2012 at 2:07 pm |
    • freeman

      Luis Wu,

      David Niven called....

      October 9, 2012 at 2:07 pm |
    • End Religion

      @cari: "God is real! Jesus is real!"

      Please provide the video, photo and textual evidence to support your claim. Before you begin, please know that we've already established the bible is a fraud and jesus likely did not exist.

      ***
      "It is the different religious demonminations that have separated us all."

      Every denomination and each religion. Do you realize what you're saying? You're admitting religion is divisive and the root cause of our inability to get along. Thank you for helping support the cause to abandon all religion.

      ***
      "We are all trying to reach for a higher power."

      Your wild assumption is false. If you'd read the article you'd see there many who are not reaching for any higher power.

      ***
      "Each human being thinks their religion is the correct way...."

      Again, false. First, not all humans have a religion. Of those that do some do not feel theirs is correct but seek out other options. Some may feel there are multiple paths to "the correct one". I will grant you that firm believers of a faith likely do feel theirs is the only correct one. None of these deluded folks is correct however.

      ***
      "As long as you develop a relationship w/ Christ that is all that matters."

      That is not all that matters. That may be what you believe, however, perhaps unbeknownst to you, Christ has a set of rules you need to follow or you will be eternally waterboarded in a lava lake. The rules are called commandments. You are commanded to obey them or pay his price. This is called extortion.

      ***
      "So, tonight when I go home & say my prayers I will make sure to say a special prayer for all of you who don't know him & pray that you find him soon."

      Thank you for your concern but you'd best spend all your praying on yourself. Sounds like you have likely been breaking a few commandments without realizing it.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:09 pm |
    • jesus christ

      1 Timothy 2:12: I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:14 pm |
  9. cdavidchurch

    Wohoo! how wonderful is that news! I've successfully educated my two kids to be atheists, yet to also be compassionate and honest. You don't need made up Gods and religion to be a good person.

    October 9, 2012 at 1:54 pm |
    • Gorsh

      What do you base you beliefs in right and wrong? Of course on the prevailing cultural norms of western society. Where do you think these came from?

      October 9, 2012 at 1:57 pm |
    • yeahalright

      Congrats! Of all the theists' arguments, the one saying "how can you have morality without g g g god?" irks me the most. I say if you only act morally because you know there's a god who's gonna give you a report card at the end, then you're only acting out of fear of punishment, not any real desire to do good.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:59 pm |
    • djhbutler

      yeahalright: thank god we are losing our religion and while I agree with you and the argument you make is a good one...the fact also remains that we are often concerned with the consequences and not the intention...so if fear creates a better world why not take it...

      October 9, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
    • yeahalright

      djh – yeah good point. I guess there will always be those who need to be scared into acting decently, be it by cops, neighbors, pastors or imaginary friends.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
    • Mom of 4

      cdavid,

      Good. I raised 4 that way. The Catholics' procreate & multiply scheme sort of backfired on them. After I had these 4 innocent babes who were trusting me to tell them the truth, I just could not, in good conscience, delude them with those myths, legends, fantasies and superst'itions.

      They are now 4 healthy, upstanding, productive adults.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
  10. chris

    You are conditioned thru learning. Regardless of your age or belief, you have been bombarded with messages of what is represents good morals. These morals have been based off the religions and the majority offer the tenet of "treat people as you wish to be treated". i agree that religions cause the majority of war and stated as much but the world would be worse off without the religions of the past because the moral teaching would not have been learned to provide any type of "stop" button. As for the person who mentions the MMO principle, it is you who needs to better understand the full thesis. take an unbiased class. the only way to learn is to be exposed to all opinions and remove your own bias before you attend

    October 9, 2012 at 1:52 pm |
    • QS

      "These morals have been based off the religions and the majority offer the tenet of "treat people as you wish to be treated"."

      Too bad this is not actually what religion teaches people, and those who think it is are naive beyond comprehension.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:56 pm |
    • The Truth

      "These morals have been based off the religions "

      You are basing your conclusions on a false premise. There is no evidence that morals came from religion but instead much evidence that morals came from social evolution that was then stolen and claimed by religion and structuralized.

      Your conclusion is that we are better off with religion because it gave us morals, but in reallity we are better off with social groups and community where the moral evolution has taken place over the past hundred thousand years or so of our ancestors living in small social groups for protection and survival that functioned better when there was some moral stability and shared empathy. Religion was just that moral evolution being standardized and given a name and shape, which wasn't wrong in of itself, but when it usurped empathys role and replaced it with it's own God, that was where it went wildly off the tracks and has been crashing into humans ever since.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:07 pm |
  11. freeman

    As an atheist, one thing I am glad to see is that networks have begun including openly atheistic characters in television shows. More importantly, they have treated these characters with respect.

    One example is Constance Bones in the series Bones. They openly discuss her atheism in an honest manner, without trying to insert a religious message. Another popular show, Dexter – maybe not the best example, since he is also a serial killer – has shown him try and struggle with religious thought – again treating both his atheism and religions openly and fairly.

    It helps for people to be able to see atheists as just other, ordinary people, and not as some shocking category.

    October 9, 2012 at 1:52 pm |
  12. Donna in Arizona

    Okay, now that it's been established that most of America's citizens exercise their right to "freedom from religion," will you please stop trying to legislate morality because of YOUR warped religious beliefs. Religion is the source of most of the problems on the planet and I'm tired of having it pushed on me as "the truth." Grow a brain already and start thinking for yourselves all you religious self-righteous zealots!

    October 9, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
    • Andrew

      Who are you talking to? Everyone is different, even within specific religious groups. Within races, political groups, age groups, hair color. Trouble happens when you hate on groups of people.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:56 pm |
    • QS

      "Trouble happens when you hate on groups of people."

      I think that's the point Donna was making – religion only teaches people how to hate certain groups of people. Don't fool yourself into thinking that religion is actually inclusive just because any given religion makes that claim. Every religion, every one of them, has at least one group of people they teach their followers to either hate, shun, avoid, condemn, etc...not one of them is exempt from this.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:59 pm |
  13. JW

    If this report is true then why has the GOP become more, even, huber religious? In addition, we are about to vote in the first Mormon president. Something doesn't add up here. We may be coming into the Age of Mormonism. How scary is that. We could become the United Christian States of Mormon America and Americans don't seem to care. Americans are just pathetic. They deserve to loose the civil & human rights won over the past 50 years. All hail the Mormon prophet !

    October 9, 2012 at 1:50 pm |
    • Gorsh

      We have lost more rights under Obama than any president before, except maybe Bush. But even Bush never claimed the right to indefinitely detain Americans without charges or trial.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:52 pm |
    • Luis Wu

      Republicans want to take away your right to choose, use birth control, be gay etc. etc. They also want to force Christianity on you. No thanks. I'll stick with Obama.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:57 pm |
    • freeman

      Republicans and Democrats are both very selective about whose rights they are willing to violate.

      Democrats will willingly abrogate everyone's personal liberty to achieve the social goals they place as more important than basic individual rights.

      Republicans, influenced by the religious right, are willing to abrogate the personal liberty of pregnant mothers and gay people, because a large enough voting bloc of Republicans place as more important certain religious goals.

      Whenever you see the word "social" in front of the term "Democrat" or "Republican" – run fast in the opposite direction. These are the two groups which are doing the most to destroy individual rights in this country.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:59 pm |
    • Donna in Utah

      Americans are too smart to vote Nitwit Mormon Romney as POTUS! I've said for years, screw the middle east, let's do something about Utah, where the separation of church and state does NOT exist! Read the history of the Mormon church, people, before you cast a ballot for Romney or you will be inviting the Mormon church's "living prophet" to run the show in all of America, not just Utah! Most people have NO idea what Mormons are REALLY like - it's a divisive, intolerant social club with members who think they are "saints" and it doesn't matter how many lies have to be told or blood that has to be shed, they're so brainwashed they'll do anything the church dictates (and it dictates regularly)! This is one scary religious sect!

      October 9, 2012 at 1:59 pm |
    • yeahalright

      Please do list those rights Obama has taken away, and the ones in your imagination (or fox news' imagination) don't count. Is it like when all you gun nuts just absolutely knew the socialist muslim demon worshipper was going to take away your guns? You know, and then he didn't do a thing to touch em? Like that?

      October 9, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
    • ME II

      @JW,
      Fear mongering.
      Did JFK usher in the PSA (Papal States of America)? Inquiring minds want to know?

      October 9, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
  14. Shelia B

    As a Quaker, I understand many of the reasons are drawn to spirituality rather than religion. Unprogrammed Liberal Friends Meeting are usually full of folks who are former this or that as well as agnostics and atheists who like being part of a spiritual community. There is no pastor, no emphasis on the Bible, but an emphasis on being loving, practicing simplicity, encouraging peace, speak with intregity (truth), and embracing equality among men/women/race/religion etc. It fits some but not all. Evangelical Christians highjacked Christianity just as Radical Muslims highacked Islam. None of their vitrolic arguements have anything to with practicing the tenents of Jesus or Mohammed.

    October 9, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
    • Luis Wu

      Unprogrammed? You're programmed by an ancient book of mythology to believe that Jesus was a god.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:53 pm |
    • clinky

      Good post

      October 9, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
    • Jude

      You hit the nail on the head. Some people are atheists and it is good that people are feeling that they can declare it openly now. But their are many people who are spiritual but are disalusioned with the politicalization of the pulpit.

      I don't want to know that you disagree with gay marriage or that you like Rick Santorum. Ministers are supposed help us in our quest to live our faith not judge others on their lives. They have polluted Christianity with their craven political ambition.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
  15. tonyw

    What upsets me about some people being atheist, is they look upon others who do believe in a religion as somehow beneath them in intelligence. Am I to believe that if I believe in God and go to church with others that believe the same as I do and not harm anyone, then I have a lower IQ? I wish more families went to church and brought up their kids with morals that are defined as, how can I help my neighbor instead of the "screw you before you screw me" mentality. People say others have died because of religion, yet I find very few religions that preach any harm to anyone. Once you add the human factor into religion, then sure people will do stupid things for and say it was for religion. Put it to you this way, I would rather my neighbor be a Mormon, Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, or Hindu, etc..... then be someone who believes in nothing. I am not saying all atheist are bad people, but I find more atheist attacking my religion then my religion attacking atheist!

    October 9, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
    • mk

      See here is your problem:

      " I wish more families went to church and brought up their kids with morals..."

      You, claiming that people who don't go to church have no morals, is the problem. Pretending that since you go to church, you are better behaved. Thinking that a god likes you best because you go to church. If you claim to be better than someone else, you're bound to be attacked.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:53 pm |
    • lamb of dog

      I'm just glad I'm not your neighbor. Because you are clueless. If you think I have no morals you're a moron.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
    • SnYGuY

      Your religion simply believes we will all burn in hell...

      October 9, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
    • freeman

      No, Tony, it doesn't mean you have a low IQ. It only means that you have a very high level of denial.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:02 pm |
    • RE: TONYV

      Not all religious folks have a rock bottom IQ and not all atheists lack morality.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
    • Twirlgrl

      What upsets me about some people being atheist, is they look upon others who do believe in a religion as somehow beneath them in intelligence. Am I to believe that if I believe in God and go to church with others that believe the same as I do and not harm anyone, then I have a lower IQ? I wish more families went to church and brought up their kids with morals that are defined as, how can I help my neighbor instead of the "screw you before you screw me" mentality. People say others have died because of religion, yet I find very few religions that preach any harm to anyone. Once you add the human factor into religion, then sure people will do stupid things for and say it was for religion. Put it to you this way, I would rather my neighbor be a Mormon, Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, or Hindu, etc..... then be someone who believes in nothing. I am not saying all atheist are bad people, but I find more atheist attacking my religion then my religion attacking atheist!

      I am an atheist. I don't believe in "nothing". I believe in beauty, truth, justice, honesty, love and many other things. I do not think believers are less intelligent than me. I DO think that they are not applying logic and critical thinking to their beliefs. You only say that religion does not attack atheists because you have never been an atheist and experienced the discrimination that an atheist experiences. I would rather my neighbor be a decent human being regardless of their faith or lack of it.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
    • QS

      "I wish more families went to church and brought up their kids with morals that are defined as, how can I help my neighbor instead of the "screw you before you screw me" mentality."

      Here's your other problem – that mentality you say you don't like is precisely the philosophy that conservatives believe is a viable economic plan....and conservatives just happen to be the party that is more beholden to religion.

      See, it's all well and good to make all kinds of random claims about one's preferred religion, but simply making claims such as "religion teaches all of us to be better people" does not make those claims true and the longer people willfully accept being blind to that, the longer religion will continue to be a negative influence in this world.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:14 pm |
    • ZFairplay

      I am a Muslim turned "unaffiliated" type. Thanks for including Muslims in your preference of neighbors. Most of the "unaffiliated" ones that you don't want as your neighbor were once part of the religious community. Our morals have not changed, we believe in peace, treating others as we want to be treated, and speaking the truth. A "moral" life is not the exclusive domain on the religious. That is a false and egocentric belief.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
    • tonyw

      @mk I also live by the old saying, Little John went to church every Sunday, but went to hell for what he did on Monday. Going to church alone is not enough, being apart of a community and contributing and sacrificing is what builds character.

      October 9, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
  16. oydela

    Thank god!

    October 9, 2012 at 1:48 pm |
  17. Tricia

    I can see the trend to non religious increasing. I grew up very religious and for myself have realized I no longer believe in god. I have found a surprisingly large group of formerly religious people who no longer believe. Its liberating.

    October 9, 2012 at 1:48 pm |
  18. Gorsh

    If there is a god, I highly doubt that any specific religion will have a monopoly on his love. If there is no god, we will never know. One thing to think about, if near death experiences are real they are the only hint of evidence for an afterlife and atheists have them as often as religious people. All but the nastiest of humans have pleasant experiences, so if there is a god, relax, be good.

    October 9, 2012 at 1:47 pm |
  19. Sally Wells

    If we could only get 20% of the Islamic world to go non-believer!!
    Wait, they kill non-believers. Oh well, another 1000 yrs of Islamic ranting and screaming.

    October 9, 2012 at 1:45 pm |
    • Luis Wu

      Well, it took several centuries for Christians to give up burning people at the stake, crusading wars, witch trials etc. So maybe there's hope for Islamics. Maybe they'll be civilized in a few hundred years.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:50 pm |
    • ZFairplay

      Shame on you Sally for beholding to propaganda news rather than seeing the truth. 99% of muslims are non-violent peace loving human beings. I am one of the ones that are more comfortable with the "unaffiliated" tags, but having been a practicing muslim before I see the ignorance in your comment. A lot of muslims are also now more secular in nature and that number is growing as more people apply logical thinking. Look at where christianity has been with all the witch burning and what not.

      October 9, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
  20. Jean Lash

    For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotton son, that whosoever believeth in Him, should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved:
    John 3:16, 17

    October 9, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
    • hINDUISM RACISM OF hINDU'S, CRIMINALS BY FAITH EXPOSED

      Explain your hinduism, absurdity please, what do you mean by begotten?

      October 9, 2012 at 1:48 pm |
    • OOO

      Thanks Jean,
      That bible verse was the missing piece. I now believe!!!!

      October 9, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
    • Gypsy

      Ridiculous.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:50 pm |
    • Luis Wu

      Blah blah blah nonsense from an archaic old book of mythology. Grow a brain.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
    • nonconformist

      An old myth.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
    • Joe Zamecki

      Interesting. So where is this god? Why don't you just produce him? I find it very telling that most Christians don't finish the sentiment that Jesus was trying to express in John 3:16, right after that, in John 3:18. He condemns everyone who doesn't want to follow him – and blames THEM for being condemned. Jesus was a total jerk...if you read the rest of the story.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:52 pm |
    • lamb of dog

      So if he gave us his son to help out why is the world still messed up. Seems like he wasted a son.

      October 9, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
    • Bible not the word of God

      Your statement means nothing to those of us that don't see the bible as a word coming straight from the mouth of some "humanized" god

      October 9, 2012 at 1:56 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.