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My Take: Counting the Bible's words doesn't yield a Republican Jesus
How many times do hot-button issues come up in the Bible?
November 5th, 2012
09:43 AM ET

My Take: Counting the Bible's words doesn't yield a Republican Jesus

Editor's note: Stephen Prothero, a Boston University religion scholar and author of "The American Bible: How Our Words Unite, Divide, and Define a Nation," is a regular CNN Belief Blog contributor.

By Stephen Prothero, Special to CNN

(CNN) Over the last few days I have fielded hundreds of angry e-mails from pro-Mitt Romney evangelicals about a recent Belief Blog post in which I took Billy Graham and other white evangelicals to task for turning Jesus into a water boy for the Republican Party.

A disturbing number of these complaints about my alleged "evangelical bashing" have been hateful, ill-informed and explicitly racist. But the more intelligent responses have taken two tacks.

First, readers have told me that they are voting for Romney not because Mormonism is proper Christianity but because Romney is the lesser of two evils. Some in this camp, convinced (wrongly) that President Barack Obama is a Muslim, say they would rather vote for a Mormon than a Muslim.

Second, readers have argued that Romney's political views are more biblical. And repeatedly they have referred me to two central issues: abortion and same-sex marriage.

One pastor who reports he is working on a doctorate in theology says he believes “that the Bible is the literal word of God.” Because of this belief, he will vote for Romney: “ If you claim Christ as your king, how on earth can you justify the murder of God given life through abortion or any other means?" he writes. "If you accept Christ as your king, how on earth can you accept the moral deviancy of homosexuality as normal?”

In my book "American Jesus," I demonstrated how American views of Jesus, rather than adhering strictly to the unchanging biblical witness, have shifted with the cultural and political winds. Over the course of U.S. history Jesus has been a socialist and a capitalist, a pacifist and a warrior.

In other words, he has been used, by both the left and the right. Or, as I put it, “The American Jesus is more a pawn than a king, pushed around in a complex game of cultural (and countercultural) chess, sacrificed here for this cause and there for another.”

This problem of mistaking your God for the God the problem, that is, of idolatry was captured beautifully by Albert Schweitzer, who suggested that scholars on a quest for the “historical Jesus” were looking down into a deep well and seeing not the real Jesus but reflections of themselves.

This is what is happening, in my view, to my angry evangelical readers. In this case, however, they are looking down the well and seeing some mashup of Ronald Reagan and Romney. Instead of the biblical Christ, they are seeing the Republican Jesus.

There are many ways to support my argument that the preoccupations of the Christian Right today are not the preoccupations of the Bible.

One is to point out that abortion is never even mentioned in the Bible. (Yes, Jeremiah 1:5 reads, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,” but when did that formation happen? At conception? At quickening? At birth?)

Another is to point out that American evangelicals didn’t care about the abortion question until the GOP taught them to care.

As Jonathan Dudley observes in a recent Belief Blog post, U.S. Catholic leaders began to take on abortion right after Roe v. Wade legalized it in 1973, but American evangelical leaders continued to teach that life begins at birth until the late 1970s and early 1980s. If the Bible clearly teaches us that our politics should center on the abortion question, why did it take nearly 2,000 years for Bible believers to figure this out?

Here is my basic proposition: Bible-believing Christians who want to base their politics on the Bible ought to get the Bible straight, which is to say (a) correct and (b) directly from the page, rather than filtered through the spin of the GOP.

To this end, I would like to challenge them to look at an amazing website, part of “The Official King James Bible Online,” which lists each and every word in that translation of the Bible in order of popularity.

Not surprisingly, “and” and “the” are the top two.  But how do more meaningful words rank?

Abortion, of course, is not on the list. Neither is homosexuality, though there are, I will admit, perhaps a couple dozen references to what we now call male homosexuality (and either one or zero to lesbianism, depending on how you read Romans 1:26).

So these issues are not central. But which issues are? Well, faith, grace and salvation, for starters. (They appear 231, 159 and 158 times, respectively.)

But if you turn to the political questions that beset us today, what does this quantitative approach to the Bible yield? First and foremost, a preoccupation with "war” (280 times) and “peace” (470). Second, a preoccupation with economics, and especially with the rich (109) and the poor (233).

The Bible also seems far more concerned with “prison” and “prisoners” (109) than we are in U.S. politics today. And, I might add, with famine (101).

Finally, the Bible mentions Israel a lot (2,509 times) even more than heaven (644). So that seems to be something that both candidates got right in the third debate.

To conclude, I have no problem with evangelical Christians voting for Romney. My complaint arises when they say they are doing so because the Bible commands them to vote for the candidate who is opposed to abortion rights and opposes same-sex marriage.

The Bible itself is relatively unconcerned with these matters. It is far more concerned with questions of poverty and wealth, war and peace, and (need I add?) theology.

If you think otherwise, it's not the Bible speaking. It's the political operative at the bottom of the well.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Stephen Prothero.

- CNN Belief Blog contributor

Filed under: 2012 Election • Bible • Economy • Evangelical • Jesus • Mitt Romney • My Take • Opinion • Politics • United States

soundoff (1,060 Responses)
  1. dave

    Personally, I've never understood why so many Evangelicals think Christians being in control of the government is a good idea. Our faith descends from a people who have been oppressed for most of their existence, our Savior and the Author of our faith held no political power (nor did he want it), the early Church was begun under persecution then exploded across Asia minor under even worse persecution, and finally, when the Church rose to political power, it became guilty of some of the worse atrocities in history. It seems to me that God doesn't need our political might to get things done–and perhaps we just get in the way.

    November 5, 2012 at 5:32 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Very well written dave. I am an atheist.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:37 pm |
    • Ronald Regonzo

      No sh it moby, get your one way boat ticket out of here Nov. 7th if you ain't got it already. Don't wait for Mitt to have to do it. Romney / Ryan 2012

      November 5, 2012 at 5:41 pm |
    • == o ==

      The only kind of "trickle-down" that actually works:

      "pervert alert" (who writes lovely things like "qu e ers the ones who gave aids to america" degenerates to:
      "Taskmaster" degenerates to:
      "Ronald Regonzo" degenerates to:
      "truth be told" degenerates to:
      "Atheism is not healthy ..." degenerates to:
      "tina" degenerates to:
      "captain america" degenerates to:
      "just sayin" degenerates to:
      "nope" degenerates to:
      "WOW" degenerates to:

      and many other names, but of course I prefer to refer to this extreme homophobe as
      the disgruntled Evangelical Fortune Cookie Co. writer boot camp flunkie.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:43 pm |
    • OdysseusV

      Bravo! well said!! True Christianity doesn't get involved in the worldy corruption called politics, they've already cast their vote for Jesus Christ when they got baptized as his slaves!!

      November 5, 2012 at 5:50 pm |
  2. Jt_flyer

    I voted already. I voted to maintain the Separation of Church and State. It's what separates us from our enemies.

    November 5, 2012 at 5:31 pm |
    • Rynomite

      So Gary Johnson eh?

      November 5, 2012 at 5:32 pm |
    • OdysseusV

      Christ said to love our enemies! Satan and death are our real enemies, not our fellowman and the sooner people wake up and realize this and stop making enemies of each other the sooner we all can all enjoy real peace!

      November 5, 2012 at 5:53 pm |
    • sam stone

      death is your enemy?

      November 5, 2012 at 7:44 pm |
  3. Kate

    Strange that conservatives worry so much about abortion, yet usually are gung ho on torture and capital punishment.
    The bible also tells us to help opur fellow man....and they aren't too big on that either.

    November 5, 2012 at 5:30 pm |
    • Ronald Regonzo

      Torture helps a miscreant see the error of their ways, execution solves the problem. Mitt will be on the switch. Romney / Ryan 2012

      November 5, 2012 at 5:37 pm |
    • == o ==

      The only kind of "trickle-down" that actually works:

      "pervert alert" (who writes lovely things like "qu e ers the ones who gave aids to america" degenerates to:
      "Taskmaster" degenerates to:
      "Ronald Regonzo" degenerates to:
      "truth be told" degenerates to:
      "Atheism is not healthy ..." degenerates to:
      "tina" degenerates to:
      "captain america" degenerates to:
      "just sayin" degenerates to:
      "nope" degenerates to:
      "WOW" degenerates to:

      and many other names, but of course I prefer to refer to this extreme homophobe as
      the disgruntled Evangelical Fortune Cookie Co. writer boot camp flunkie.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:44 pm |
  4. poohcorner

    “If we are not governed by God, then we will be ruled by tyrants.” William Penn (1644-1718)
    Thomas Jefferson, Letter to John Adams, April 11, 1823 "And the day will come when the mystical generation of Jesus, by the supreme being as his father in the womb of a virgin, will be classed with the fable of the generation of Minerve in the brain of Jupiter. But may we hope that the dawn of reason and freedom of thought in these United States will do away with this artificial scaffolding, and restore to us the primitive and genuine doctrines of this most venerated reformer of human errors."

    November 5, 2012 at 5:30 pm |
    • Ronald Regonzo

      Problem solved ! As a Mormon, Mitt is halfway to being a God. Romney / Ryan 2012

      November 5, 2012 at 5:38 pm |
    • == o ==

      The only kind of "trickle-down" that actually works:

      "pervert alert" (who writes lovely things like "qu e ers the ones who gave aids to america" degenerates to:
      "Taskmaster" degenerates to:
      "Ronald Regonzo" degenerates to:
      "truth be told" degenerates to:
      "Atheism is not healthy ..." degenerates to:
      "tina" degenerates to:
      "captain america" degenerates to:
      "just sayin" degenerates to:
      "nope" degenerates to:
      "WOW" degenerates to:

      and many other names, but of course I prefer to refer to this extreme homophobe as
      the disgruntled Evangelical Fortune Cookie Co. writer boot camp flunkie.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:44 pm |
  5. OdysseusV

    First and foremost the idea of Christ getting involved in politics is ridiculous. This is the same Jesus that when they tried to make him king he withdrew into the mountain. Same Jesus that when on trial before pilot said that his attendants would have fought for him only if his kingdom was part of this world, but it is not! He told Peter to return his sword after cutting off the high priests slaves ear , because those that take up the sword will die by the sword. Also note when Satan offered Christ all the kingdoms of the world he turned him down because his father was the only rightful King, but he did not deny that those kingdoms were under Satan's control. So that is why the 1st century did not get involved in politics. They saw that it was corruption and under the influence of the devil!! So any pastor that tells his flock to vote for any candidate is actually going against pure Christianity which recognizes only one true King!

    November 5, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
    • Chuck C

      OdysseusV – Beautifully said. One king and ruler of all nations, of heaven and earth. Who ever this country elects God has total control.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:37 pm |
  6. Rummy Pirate Times-Dispatch

    "In Greed We Trust"

    In 1994, Bain invested $27 million as part of a deal with other firms to acquire Dade International, a medical-diagnostics-equipment firm, from its parent company, Baxter International. Bain ultimately made nearly 10 times its money, getting back $230 million. But Dade wound up laying off more than 1,600 people and filed for bankruptcy protection in 2002, amid crushing debt and rising interest rates. The company, with Bain in charge, had borrowed heavily to do acquisitions, accumulating $1.6 billion in debt by 2000. The company cut benefits for some workers at the acquired firms and laid off others. When it merged with Behring Diagnostics, a German company, Dade shut down three U.S. plants. At the same time, Dade paid out $421 million to Bain Capital’s investors and investing partners.

    Marc Wolpow, a former Bain partner who worked with Romney on many deals, said the discussion at buyout companies typically does not focus on whether jobs will be created. “It’s the opposite—what jobs we can cut,” Wolpow said. “Because you had to document how you were going to create value. Eliminating redundancy, or the elimination of people, is a very valid way."

    BAIN'S INVESTOR "SUCCESSES" WERE PRIMARILY CONTINGENT ON MASS LAY-OFFS OF WORKERS

    November 5, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
    • Ronald Regonzo

      Laying off peasants all the way to the bank and you thought Republicans didn't have a heart. You gotta love Mitt. Romney / Ryan 2012

      November 5, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
    • == o ==

      The only kind of "trickle-down" that actually works:

      "pervert alert" (who writes lovely things like "qu e ers the ones who gave aids to america" degenerates to:
      "Taskmaster" degenerates to:
      "Ronald Regonzo" degenerates to:
      "truth be told" degenerates to:
      "Atheism is not healthy ..." degenerates to:
      "tina" degenerates to:
      "captain america" degenerates to:
      "just sayin" degenerates to:
      "nope" degenerates to:
      "WOW" degenerates to:

      and many other names, but of course I prefer to refer to this extreme homophobe as
      the disgruntled Evangelical Fortune Cookie Co. writer boot camp flunkie.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:45 pm |
  7. link

    MORMONS are not Christians.... PERIOD "THOU SHALL NOT Bear Witness to the FALSE PROPHET.....
    3 “You shall have no other gods before me. 7 “‘You shall have no other gods before me.
    2 2 1 4 “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. 8 “‘You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.
    2 2 1 5 You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the LORD your God am a jealous God,visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, 9 You shall not bow down to them or serve them; for I the LORD your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me,
    2 2 1 6 but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments. 10 but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.

    November 5, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
    • Madtown

      How would you know who the false prophet is? What's your test?

      November 5, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
    • Ronald Regonzo

      Mormons can become their own God, until Kolob, Washington is as close as Mitt will get but it will be great practice. Romney / Ryan 2012

      November 5, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
    • == o ==

      The only kind of "trickle-down" that actually works:

      "pervert alert" degenerates to:
      "Taskmaster" degenerates to:
      "Ronald Regonzo" degenerates to:
      "truth be told" degenerates to:
      "Atheism is not healthy ..." degenerates to:
      "tina" degenerates to:
      "captain america" degenerates to:
      "just sayin" degenerates to:
      "nope" degenerates to:
      "WOW" degenerates to:

      and many other names, but of course I prefer to refer to this extreme homophobe as
      the disgruntled Evangelical Fortune Cookie Co. writer boot camp flunkie.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:28 pm |
  8. ElvisPerez

    According to scripture Christ cared about the poor and would never have considered voting for Romney. Please, Romney would have been like a Roman and crucified Jesus. Behold, the bible is being misused in a sacrilegious way to elect someone who is far removed from its teachings.
    I do like the Unicorn post also.

    November 5, 2012 at 5:20 pm |
    • Ronald Regonzo

      You ain't seen poor until Mitt gets a crack at it. Uncle Mitt will show America what poor is all about. Romney / Ryan 2012

      November 5, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
    • Huebert

      @RR

      Was that supposed to be an endorsement of Mitt?

      November 5, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
    • == o ==

      The only kind of "trickle-down" that actually works:

      "pervert alert", degenerates to:
      "Taskmaster" degenerates to:
      "Ronald Regonzo" degenerates to:
      "truth be told" degenerates to:
      "Atheism is not healthy ..." degenerates to:
      "tina" degenerates to:
      "captain america" degenerates to:
      "just sayin" degenerates to:
      "nope" degenerates to:
      "WOW" degenerates to:

      and many other names, but of course I prefer to refer to this extreme homophobe as
      the disgruntled Evangelical Fortune Cookie Co. writer boot camp flunkie.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
    • Ronald Regonzo

      You're with the money or against us. Romney / Ryan 2012

      November 5, 2012 at 5:27 pm |
    • OdysseusV

      Actually the Jews had Jesus impaled by the Romans.Roman Governor Pilot wanted to free him twice but caved into the pressure of the Jewish mob led by their wicked leaders!

      November 5, 2012 at 5:46 pm |
  9. John

    The bible doesn't say to give everyone a welfare check and tell them to sit on a government sofa and watch government TV
    in groups large enough to pool their checks to pay for a place to live, eat, and pay the bills so their kids can owe $250,000 each
    to the goverment when they're born. The USA has been driven right into the ground. It's time to dig our way out, fix up the vehicle, start the engine, and get back on the road again. Get EVERYONE working, maybe cut the hours some, and double the pay. Do it right... we don't need welfare checks, we need jobs and pay for work done well.

    November 5, 2012 at 5:14 pm |
    • JM

      You're right.

      Jesus says to sell all our possessions and give the money to the poor.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:17 pm |
    • Ronald Regonzo

      And that is exactly what Mitt will provide ! How do you feel about commuting to China or India for your job? Romney / Ryan 2012

      November 5, 2012 at 5:18 pm |
    • GAW

      @ JM Most Christians laugh when they read those verses.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:18 pm |
    • John

      If you were going to follow him, right then, yes.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:19 pm |
    • == o ==

      The only kind of "trickle-down" that actually works:

      "pervert alert" degenerates to:
      "Taskmaster" degenerates to:
      "Ronald Regonzo" degenerates to:
      "truth be told" degenerates to:
      "Atheism is not healthy ..." degenerates to:
      "tina" degenerates to:
      "captain america" degenerates to:
      "just sayin" degenerates to:
      "nope" degenerates to:
      "WOW" degenerates to:

      and many other names, but of course I prefer to refer to this extreme homophobe as
      the disgruntled Evangelical Fortune Cookie Co. writer boot camp flunkie.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
    • Jim in Georgia

      “If this is going to be a Christian nation that doesn't help the poor, either we have to pretend that Jesus was just as selfish as we are, or we've got to acknowledge that He commanded us to love the poor and serve the needy without condition and then admit that we just don't want to do it.”

      November 5, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
    • Wraith

      Jim,

      We are a *secular* nation founded on *deist* beliefs. If you want to see, first hand, what it's like to live in a theocracy, move to Iran.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:35 pm |
  10. MagicPanties

    allah allah in free !!!!

    oops, this isn't the hide & seek forum, is it?

    November 5, 2012 at 5:13 pm |
  11. Chuck B

    The evangelicals are the religion of greed and hate! They bible to justify their actions like killing every muslim in the mid east to protect Israel, but the is they want to destroy Israel for themselves in the name of Jesus, Revelations.

    November 5, 2012 at 5:13 pm |
    • GAW

      Not all are. But enough to cause them major embarrassment. Plus the extremists get most of the attention these days.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:15 pm |
    • JM

      They haven't bothered reading the Bible apparently. They are supposed to love their neighbors/enemies, according to Jesus.

      Unfortunately, they can't tell the difference between a few Muslims who seek us harm and the countless others who are just living their lives/raising their families.

      If a white American attacks his fellow citizens (Timothy McVey), they don't consider all white Americans terrorists.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:19 pm |
    • Ronald Regonzo

      Are you saying greed and hate like they are bad things? Wait for president Mitt, you will get to see what greed is all about. Romney / Ryan 2012

      November 5, 2012 at 5:20 pm |
  12. Sly

    Which ticket would get the most votes:

    ___ Jesus-Allah
    ___ Moroni-Jesus
    ___ Allah-Moroni
    ___ Bonds-Aaron

    November 5, 2012 at 5:12 pm |
  13. Reality

    AND THE INFAMOUS ANGELIC CONS CONTINUE TO WREAK STUPIDITY UPON THE WORLD

    "prof" P has his Boston U angels?

    Joe Smith had his Moroni. (As does M. Romney)

    "Latter-day Saints like M. Romney also believe that Michael the Archangel was Adam (the first man) when he was mortal, and Gabriel lived on the earth as Noah."

    Jehovah Witnesses have their Jesus /Michael the archangel, the first angelic being created by God;

    Mohammed had his Gabriel (this "tin-kerbell" got around).

    Jesus and his family had/has Michael, Gabriel, and Satan, the latter being a modern day demon of the demented. (As does BO and his family)(As do Biden and Ryan)

    The Abraham-Moses myths had their Angel of Death and other "no-namers" to do their dirty work or other assorted duties.

    Contemporary biblical and religious scholars have relegated these "pretty wingie/horn-blowing thingies" to the myth pile. We should do the same to include deleting all references to them in our religious operating manuals. Doing this will eliminate the prophet/profit/prophecy status of these founders and put them where they belong as simple humans just like the rest of us.

    Some added references to "tink-erbells".

    newadvent.org/cathen/07049c.htm

    "The belief in guardian angels can be traced throughout all antiquity; pagans, like Menander and Plutarch (cf. Euseb., "Praep. Evang.", xii), and Neo-Platonists, like Plotinus, held it. It was also the belief of the Babylonians and As-syrians, as their monuments testify, for a figure of a guardian angel now in the British Museum once decorated an As-syrian palace, and might well serve for a modern representation; while Nabopolassar, father of Nebuchadnezzar the Great, says: "He (Marduk) sent a tutelary deity (cherub) of grace to go at my side; in everything that I did, he made my work to succeed."
    Catholic monks and Dark Age theologians also did their share of hallu-cinating:

    "TUBUAS-A member of the group of angels who were removed from the ranks of officially recognized celestial hierarchy in 745 by a council in Rome under Pope Zachary. He was joined by Uriel, Adimus, Sabaoth, Simiel, and Raguel."

    And tin-ker- bells go way, way back:

    "In Zoroastrianism there are different angel like creatures. For example each person has a guardian angel called Fravashi. They patronize human being and other creatures and also manifest god’s energy. Also, the Amesha Spentas have often been regarded as angels, but they don't convey messages, but are rather emanations of Ahura Mazda ("Wise Lord", God); they appear in an abstract fashion in the religious thought of Zarathustra and then later (during the Achaemenid period of Zoroastrianism) became personalized, associated with an aspect of the divine creation (fire, plants, water...)."

    "The beginnings of the biblical belief in angels must be sought in very early folklore. The gods of the Hitti-tes and Canaanites had their supernatural messengers, and parallels to the Old Testament stories of angels are found in Near Eastern literature. "

    "The 'Magic Papyri' contain many spells to secure just such help and protection of angels. From magic traditions arose the concept of the guardian angel. "

    November 5, 2012 at 5:12 pm |
    • GAW

      You must love the attention.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:13 pm |
  14. Mark

    GOP=Gods Own Party=Christian Right. So so glad I am an Atheist Democrat

    November 5, 2012 at 5:09 pm |
  15. jerseykris

    Once again, i don't trust grown ups with imaginary friends. Even worse, I don't trust grown ups who create laws based on what their imaginary friends tell them to do!

    November 5, 2012 at 5:05 pm |
    • Art

      Yeah!! Legalize everything

      November 5, 2012 at 5:10 pm |
  16. Reality

    Only for the new members of this blog:

    prof" P noted:

    "One is to point out that abortion is never even mentioned in the Bible. (Yes, Jeremiah 1:5 reads, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,” but when did that formation happen? At conception? At quickening? At birth?)"

    Hmmm, somewhere in the bible in notes: "THOU SHALT NOT KILL" (human life in any of its forms) and injuring a pregnant woman (and her womb-baby) as per Exodus 21: 22-24 warrants significant punishment.

    New International Version (NIV)

    22 “If people are fighting and hit a pregnant woman and she gives birth prematurely[a] but there is no serious injury, the offender must be fined whatever the woman’s husband demands and the court allows. 23 But if there is serious injury, you ARE TO TAKE LIFE FOR LIFE, 24 eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot,"

    Considering, however, the "prof" P never professes what he believes, he may not even believe in the bible so why is quoting from it??

    November 5, 2012 at 5:05 pm |
    • GAW

      Because Christians don't have a monopoly on the Bible.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:06 pm |
    • ElvisPerez

      You believe what you want to believe and then you find a justification and reason.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  17. eeyore

    the bible metion of not killing? even in defense...well, i guess christians dont need the expasion of the military or weapons of mass destruction...

    November 5, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
  18. Ken

    Abortion is american word. A word study of " innocent blood " will show God's opinion on the issue.

    November 5, 2012 at 5:03 pm |
    • itsallaloadofbollocks

      When will the right work to stop starvation, traffic accidents, gun violence etc. Seems like a good opportunity to save innocent life.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:11 pm |
    • Len

      That's a pretty big strech there sparky!

      November 5, 2012 at 5:14 pm |
    • Romnesia

      Is this the same god who supposedly killed all inhabitants of earth apart from Noah and family?

      November 5, 2012 at 5:16 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      The Catholic Church feeds more hungry people than anyone, works for immigration rights, opposes the death penalty, is pro-science, promotes education, staffs hospitals, advocates for peace, lobbies for social juctice AND opposes killing the unborn.

      So, it's a straw man to claim that pro-life supporters are either/or.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:17 pm |
  19. eeyore

    human arrogance and feeling of supremecy...monolithism...the source of evil and downfall of mankind...karma eventually reap what they sow...

    November 5, 2012 at 5:02 pm |
    • Art

      monolithism?

      November 5, 2012 at 5:11 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Yeah, you know, like in 2001 A Space Odyssey.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:18 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Art,

      the worship of Easter Island Moai.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:18 pm |
  20. Will

    The Bible also doesn't explicitly state that we shouldn't stick our hands into a sink disposal while it is on.... or to stare at the sun.

    The author dismisses the literal pastor with a literal argument and then stops short of addressing the actual pro-choice arguments: whether or not abortion is murder.

    How many times does the Bible mention that we shouldn't kill? I know of at least one major mention off the top of my head. Way to attack the straw man.

    November 5, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
    • Madtown

      What about the point that evangelical leaders said life began "at birth" until relatively recently?

      November 5, 2012 at 5:16 pm |
    • dave

      @Will, that's his point–that whether or not abortion is wrong may not be the issue. The issue may be, in light of the messages of the Bible, what is abortion's importance in relation to other issues? Evangelical Christians–or more specifically, middle class suburban Christians–tend to put it way at the top, when perhaps it ought not be there.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:17 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      dave, can you propose a system of social justice, a free society and personal property rights that does not include the right to life as foundational?

      November 5, 2012 at 5:20 pm |
    • Huebert

      Bill

      The question is not weather or not the right to life is a good thing. The question is when does one acquire their rights.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:23 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Huebert you are correct! According to Joe Biden, he believes that life begins at conception but he is unwilling to defend that life because it might cost him votes. If life begins at conception, then we have to admit to the murder of 50 million plus innocents. If we legalistically do not grant them rights of personhood until birth (or what, sometimes thereafter?), then we have merely constructed a state sponsored convenience to dispose of those who inconvenience us. If the state can establish when personhood begins, then they can change that condition and that is the point at which your personhood becomes a gift from the state and not a gift from the Almighty. Thank God for the Church which defends the rights of personhood from conception against the violence of the state. You might be interested to study the concept of personal property as found in the theology of the catechism. You might be surprised to discover that the right to life is fundamental to the right to property which is the basis for freedom and the dignity of the individual. So you see, when we allow abortion to exist, we are not enhancing the freedom of women. We are diminishing the freedom of all mankind.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
    • Rynomite

      Well if your a bible literalist:

      "And if it be from a month old even unto five years old, then thy estimation shall be of the male five shekels of silver, and for the female thy estimation shall be three shekels of silver. - Leviticus 27:6"

      Since there no other verse covering conception to one month, it's pretty clear that God (since this is HIS word ..if you are a literalist) thinks that human life has no value until a month old.

      November 5, 2012 at 5:50 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 and Eric Marrapodi with daily contributions from CNN's worldwide newsgathering team.