By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor
Washington (CNN) – A U.S. congressman is attracting attention and criticism for an online video that shows him blasting evolution and the Big Bang theory as “lies from the pit of hell” in a recent speech at a church event in his home state of Georgia.
“All that stuff I was taught about evolution, embryology, the Big Bang theory, all that is lies straight from the pit of hell,” U.S Rep. Paul Broun said in an address last month at a banquet organized by Liberty Baptist Church in Hartwell, Georgia. “And it’s lies to try to keep me and all the folks who were taught that from understanding that they need a savior.”
Broun, a medical doctor by training, serves on the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology.
Speaking at Liberty Baptist Church’s Sportsman’s Banquet on September 27, he said that “a lot of scientific data that I’ve found out as a scientist that actually show that this is really a young Earth.”
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“I don’t believe that the Earth’s but about 9,000 years old,” Broun said in the speech, which Liberty Baptist Church posted on its website via YouTube. “I believe it was created in six days as we know them. That’s what the Bible says."
Scientists say that the Earth is roughly 4.5 billion years old and that the universe dates back 13.7 billion years.
In his speech to the church group, Broun called the Bible the “the manufacturer’s handbook. … It teaches us how to run all of public policy and everything in our society.”
“That’s the reason, as your congressman, I hold the holy Bible as being the major directions to me of how I vote in Washington, D.C., and I’ll continue to do that,” he said.
A spokeswoman for the congressman, Meredith Griffanti, said that Broun was not available for comment on Wednesday and that the video showed him “speaking off the record to a large church group about his personal beliefs regarding religious issues.”
The congressman’s remarks about science have drawn attention online, with critics taking aim at his role on the science committee.
Bill Nye, the popular science personality, told the Huffington Post in an e-mail that "Since the economic future of the United States depends on our tradition of technological innovation, Representative Broun's views are not in the national interest."
"For example, the Earth is simply not 9,000 years old," said Nye, a mechanical engineer and television personality best known for his program "Bill Nye the Science Guy." Broun "is, by any measure, unqualified to make decisions about science, space, and technology."
Talking Points Memo reported on the church video over the weekend after being tipped off by the Bridge Project, a progressive group that tracks conservative activity.
Most creationists believe in the account of the origins of the world as told in the Book of Genesis, the first book of the Bible.
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In the creation account, God creates Adam and Eve, the world and everything in it in six days.
For Christians who read the Genesis account literally, or authoritatively as they would say, the six days in the account are literal 24-hour periods and leave no room for evolution. Young Earth creationists use this construct and biblical genealogies to determine the age of the Earth and typically come up with 6,000 to 10,000 years.
The Gallup Poll has been tracking Americans' views on creation and evolution for 30 years. In June, it released its latest findings, which showed that 46% of Americans believed in creationism, 32% believed in evolution guided by God, and 15% believed in atheistic evolution.
– CNN's Eric Marrapodi contributed to this report.
Believers have no beef with science - we use the fruits of science as much as anyone else - but we do NOT believe that science eliminates God.
As long as that science doesn't threaten your delusions...err...faith?
Hard to eliminate something that wasn't there in the first place.
Exactly. Yyou would USE DNA to get out of prison, and YOU know it. YOU believe in Evolution as much as the next man. YOU are just too ignorant to understand why DNA proves Evolution.
That may be true for you, but many many religious people indeed have a beef with science. Science does not eliminate god, but it eliminates quite a few religious claims, and that is not acceptable to many. They reap the benefits of science, but stubbornly remain ignorant enough to not even realize that they do.
there is so much that lies beyond the scope of our empirical knowledge - does it mean all that does not exist? our knowledge is relative as our capabilities are obscured and therefore it cannot never reach the Absolute with our imperfect senses and knowledge we gather through them.
Yep, the same argument can be used to pretend that Leprechauns actually exist. But, I find it less than convincing.
@Rufus T. Firefly
Only areas where believers do not like "scientific experiments" where they clash with the traditional theistic and moralistic view of the world. Atheists are blind but that does not mean we should let them drive the human civilization off the cliff.
Science is subordinate to truth absolute GOD, nothing can be manufactured or created without a constant, truth absolute, a medium, having no value of it's own.
How does your computer work? Care to explain?
Why speculate on what is beyond our understanding? Spiritual faith is fine for personal philosophy but stupid for determining "truth"
That fact that we are trying to know proves that our knowledge is incomplete and our capabilities are obscured - which proves our knowledge is inherently relative and will remain so - unless there is an intervention by a personal Absolute. Enough said - those who are intelligent will get it.
Your god lives within the gaps of knowledge that science is constantly squeezing together which is why religion is the enemy of science.
science creates more questions than answers every day - the space for God is not squeezing but expanding everyday.
And the fact that our knowledge is limited doesn't mean it's reasonable to believe whatever carte blanche. Things still need evidence.
@Fluffy the Gerbil of Doom
we do not see DNA as separate from God's creation - it is part of His creation. So whats is your point?
So No Atheist, are you actually arguing that as long as we are ignorant, there may still be a God? LOL!
there is a complete system of descending knowledge, a process and a goal - read Srimad Bhagavatam:
no i am arguing we will remain ignorant until we become God-realized. God by definition is the personal Absolute, only by knowing Him everything else will become known.
So, it Infinite Regression, then is it ? You can *say* anything you want. The fact is, there is no basis for your belief.
The moon is made of green cheese. I believe it. My book says it's true. I'm willing to die for it. Therefore it's true.
You can't reason someone out of a position they weren't reasoned into. There is exactly as much reason to believe in a god as there is to believe in a leprechaun. However, the irrational are forever beyond reason.
Fluffy the Gerbil of Doom
these is a basis if there is a practicable process to directly realize the Absolute Truth - but most are too deluded to try. Enough said - those who are intelligent will get it.
No Atheist, sorry kid, I'll stick with trying to figure things out on my own. After all, historically speaking, that is the only way we have ever actually gotten results.
Bullsh1t. Intelligent enough ? 85% of the National Academy of Science is atheist, AND why did your idiot god make it so hard to understand ?
who says 85% of National Academy of Science is Intelligent? None of them know the truth - all are at various relative stages of ignorance.
That in no way addressed my post. Congrats.
NA. So by your reasoning you're more intelligent than 85% of the National Academy of Science and if only they were as intelligent as you, they'd get it. Not all intelligent people are scientists but scientists do tend to be on the right side of the intelligence bell curve. They study and experiment and make informed opinions about various topics. The creation of the universe, creation of life on earth, and evolution of species on earth is well explained by science. No god or gods required.
in a maths problem solving - if you get the first step wrong - then even if you do the rest of the steps right very intelligently - you will not solve the problem. That is the problem with the scientists - they are working off of some basic false premises.
moreover, trying to capture Shakespeare's genius by analyzing arrangement of alphabets and words in one of his masterpieces is not exactly a sign of intelligence. Similarly you cannot get to the essence of the creation by analyzing the arrangement of particles in it - again the first step is wrong - you may be very intelligent at analyzing the arrangement of particles but since you are looking at the wrong thing - the intelligence is wasted.
I suspect that most (oh god I hope so) frothing at the mouth evangelical taliban christians posting comments on this blog are actually trolls who are really just spewing their shit to get a rise. I hope that's the case and they don't really exist except at Westboro Baptist.
"No one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American people." -P T Barnum
When religious dolts start running off their mouths about their creator you can feel their fear as science cuts to the core of their delusions.
Science has not and will never be able to eliminate God - for it is nothing more than study of physical phenomena in God's creation.
That's a FINE example of the logical fallacy known as "Negative Proof".
science can NOT eliminate God and that is a FACT. you atheists can cry about it all you want.
He made science but not evolution which is the lies of sinners when they don't listen. His Truth shows the way in the Scriptures. Evolution is an excuse when others won't accept His Truth and wonder why their evolution is not working. ROMNEY/RYAN 2012.
Gadflie, Unicorns exist because you can't prove they don't.
Also, my I have a 17" dingaling and my wife is Minka Kelly.
Both these things are facts because you can't prove otherwise.
I can also fly.
No Atheist, look up the fallacy I mentioned. It shows why your argument is laughable.
Everyone knows you're a troll. No one intelligent enough to argue that well believes in flying spaghetti monster.
Science cannot eliminate god because there is no way to erase stupidity.
Funny how these so called "CONservative Christians" don't talk about helping the poor and downtrodden or show any love to their fellow man.
Check out the tax returns. Obama and Biden's returns prior to the 2008 election showed less than 1% of charitable deductions. Palin's was 7%. McCain's was 28%. Conservatives tend to give their own money to help others, not take OPM (Other Peoples Money) to do the same. Get a clue and do your homework before you post your nonsense.
it's all b-s, there is no god look around at all the problems in the world, if there is a god
why has he forsaking us when nature kills millions, or a children/people suffers with cancer or
a manic just kills people or unarmed people are killed in a war. all u idiots out there please explain
this ????? how can anyone say this is god's will.....
This is temporary place of suffering for us to learn our lessons and return to our real home. God has purposefully designed this as an imperfect world so we may give up our ego to become independent Gods and seek path back to our home with our Father.
@No Atheist: You are right... God does exist. The proof is in you. He designed you as the perfect imbecile.
no atheist, who planted that ego in us? We're being punished for having something that your god forced us to have? You have plumbed the depths of irrationality.
Except the joke is on us. I'm not laughing.
This 'Belief Blog' is run by biased atheists and non-believers like Gilgoff. So much for fair and balanced. Shame on dishonest CNN!
Welcome to 2012.
Go to Fox then
I don't suppose you have any evidence for that assertion, EITHER.
Republicans continue with their war on science, women and math.
There is no war on science. But there is war on scientists who claim science 'eliminates' God. God by definition includes everything including the study of physical phenomena (created by Him) called science.
Do believers say 2+2 = 5?
No Atheist, Paul Ryan says 14,400 seconds = <3 hours.
There is no war on science. But there is war on scientists who claim science 'eliminates' the Tooth Fairy. The Tooth Fairy by definition includes everything including the study of physical phenomena (created by Her) called science.
Our country doesn't need this kind of ignorance. We need people with innovative ideas, not people hard wired to personal beliefs. Jesus won't solve our nations problems and political leaders like this will absolutely destroy it.
And he's a doctor? You mean a witch doctor who believes that a stomach ache is caused by evil spirits! LOL!
Typical liberal - start name-calling, hating and character-assassinating anyone who disagrees with them. So much for the mask of tolerant and peaceful. NOT!
What a nut! As a scientist you would think he could apply some objectivity.
OK I've heard fundamentalists whine about the big bang theory and evolution, but what's their beef with embryology?
I guess by "Pit of hell" he means the minds of free thinkers? Those gutsy enough to think outside the book? So, those that cannot be controlled through faith are demons? I think what he really means is yes, evolution and big bang makes sense but that threatens everything I've been taught. Loose translation, but I think that's the gist.
Consider that if there is a creator, all the information in the universe is the work of the creator. To deny the knowledge that is put there for us to learn is to deny the creator. Evolution happened, it is the work of the creator.
So are you saying that evolution, the work of the creator, is a lie from the pit of hell?
If we can merely accept that the bible didn't give EXACT numbers, (how could Adam and Eve understand the concept of a BILLION?) as to how long it took to create the universe, (remember a thousand years is but a day to God) then you can get behind the idea that creation was a gradual process rather than a finger-snap and BANG! everything is right there. I have no problem accepting that evolution was God's method of creation. Why cry because you can't stand the idea that you may be descended from an ape, when the Bible says you were formed from DUST? I'd take the ape ancestors and day, thank you very much. God created our bodies, and that includes our minds. Let's not spurn God's gifts of our marvelous brains and stop rejecting what we discover about our world and universe just because a 4000 year-old book had to be written in a manner that could be understood by primitive peoples. Sheeesh!
Textbook example of narcissistic christian arrogance.
or...maybe it's because the book WAS written by primitives.
yet another spin on the silliness that is creationism. If it doesn't make sense just MAKE IT make sense and create your own story. One of 100 million stories of how it all started...lol. Can we get a Christian consensus here on creation?
BTW, Broun went to med school. He never did any "training. He has no board certification. He was a concierge MD, who could not get hired or a residency. He did "house-calls". That's it. Look him up. He's a quack doctor.
Vicious propaganda. Liberals have gone off the deep end.
Like the inane drivel coming out of the religious fvcks.
Prove it then, idiot. Where was he "trained" ? Oh wait. He wasn't.
What a stupid thing to say especially by somebody who should know better. I suppose he also believe that Adam & Eve really existed and we all descended from them. As nobody knows exactly who Adam & Eve looked like, we must assume that somehow they produced offsprings that are white, black, brown, yellow. Or more likely. he believes that Adam and Eve were white, blue-eyed and blond. Then, explain the other aces on this earth!!!
At least he believes in something that wise have passed on to us. What do you know? Nothing. Except some lies.
For more details study the Vedic literature - specifically the Srimad Bhagavatam:
They got it all from tv like perverts in comedy shows. We need more leaders like Mr Broun to teach the real science of His truth to these sinners since when ever they get a chance they will. ROMNEY/RYAN 2012.
This man is a medical doctor by training. Have some respect! It only shows that evolution and bing bang are just theories - not facts.
Just a theory... you dumb fvck.
The only -just- is your delusion and want of a god. Fear – fear your death. That is all your religious freaks are about.
Actually there is much information that supports both the Big Bang and evolution. Pieces of the concepts are confirmed, it's some of the details that are unconfirmed. In comparison, creationism and the young earth theroy are shown to be wrong by much information. If you look at the concept ot a creator and the universe in the most direct terms, every pieve of the information is the work of the creator. To deny all the knowledge that is put there and cling solely to a human interpretation of a book is to deny the creator.
You are trolling, right? nobody can possibly be that stupid, except a christian repub.
Wow - emotional name calling is perfect way to concede a debate. The truth is that 'fear of death' is real. The reason is that we are eternal but holding onto these temporary frames. That incompatibility causes the fear we experience - we know deep inside we are more than these mortal frames.
Scientists have no solution for fear - or for death, old age and disease. They themselves are helplessly experiencing these and perishing - how can they save us.
It's clear that you don't have a clue about, in science, what a theory is. You're assuming it's a hypothesis which is basically just an idea about something. In science, a theory is something that has been tested repeatedly and so far holds up to scientific scrutiny. There's as much evidenced that Spider-man is real, maybe even more, than God. Your belief is base on one book. At least Spider-man has been in several.
Evolution and big bang have generated more questions than answers.
"Theories" are all science EVER has. Do YOU take antibiotics ? The germ THEORY, is "just a theory". Idiot. The Theory of Evolution has attained "fact-hood", (except in the Bible Belt, which is about 500 years behind the times).
No Atheist, it is clear that you have no idea what the word "theory" means in a scientific context. Here's a clue, like gravity and plate tectonics, evolution is both a fact AND a theory. The fact is that we know it obviously happens. The theory is our best explanation how.
No Atheist. What arguments do you have for Creationism and/or against Evolution that are not either an obvious misuse of math (specifically statistics) or an equally obvious logical fallacy?
He thinks the "Theory of Gravity" is "just a theory". Let's hope he jumps from somewhere high.
That is because as our science knowledge base grows, it brings to light even more questions to be answered – questions we never knew existed.
Will science ever have a Big Book of Everything? That is hard to say... At this point in history, the quest for a complete understanding about the natural world seems hopeless and eternal. To which I say... HOORAY!!!!
Just another wackadoddle only difference is that we call him congressman most of the time we just call them terrorist
Wow just wow! Now you get labeled terrorists for rightly calling 'evolution' and 'big bang' theories and not facts. You liberals have gone off the deep end. You are the bullying terrorists by throwing such hate labels.
The plague that is religion will be buried and wiped from the face of the earth.
Do you even know what a theory is within the realm of science?
“If moral absolutism is true, then why is slavery wrong? Slavery is condoned in the bible”
=>no, slavery is not condoned in the Bible. God warned the Hebrew never to forget what it was like to be a slave under the Egyptians for 450 years. In the beginning God put order into the creation which was a formless empty darkness. Total freedom was experienced in God until man took of the fruit of good and evil. At that point man was a slave. God did not condone this and kicked them out of the Garden so they would not be slaves to death forever.
“the coveting one.”
=>Coveting is a sin against a Holy God as is treating people wrong (this include slaves specifically as slavery was common in the surrounding communities)
“2000 years ago slavery was right.”
=>never, not in Gods eyes. In the Old Testament instructions were given as to treatment of slaves that gave them rights not take them away. These were bond servants not slaves and from a justice view it was to the benefit of this class to be a slave to the Hebrew rather than the Cannanites. Yes, God could have said no slaves for you guys but, what to do with those that had no land or rights living in starvation presented a problem to the culture.
Jesus referred to being a slave to sin. Reference of slave and master was used in parables and examples because everyone knew what that was. Just because I refer to Justin Bieber as a singer does not mean I am a fan or even like his music.
“200 years ago in the southern states slavery was right.”
=>many people confuse the African Slave Trade with the common slavery and bond servant usage in the Old Testament. They are not the same.
Many Christians twisted parts of the Bible to justify wrongful acts of slavery in the south 200 years ago. It was wrong then and now.
“Morality is what changed. It is inescapably relative.”
=Immorality is inescapably relative and has not changed since the days of Adam and Eve. Morality is fixed by Divine Word of God without gray areas.
“Surely the bible says that adulterers should be stoned? “
=>that was a tradition of the Sanhedrin and other Jewish sects and as you recall Jesus called them on that hypocrisy and all the other harsh laws and traditions made by Priests not God.
“The "Laws of Moses" are not absolute.”
=> Jesus referred to the Scripture and the laws of the prophets as being absolute. They did not change. Jesus fulfilled several of them so that we no longer need to follow them. A good example would be the fact Christ was the sacrificial Lamb of God who was sacrificed for our sins. Based on this final atonement we no longer need to go through the sacrifice rituals.
oopps does not belong here.
Oh look .. the vermin bible pumper.
There is no "moral absolute". Murder is ok if you're a soldier, or the State puts someone to death. Try harder moral "absoluters"
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.