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My Take: The danger of calling behavior ‘biblical’
The author argues that there are many meanings of the adjective 'biblical.'
November 17th, 2012
10:00 PM ET

My Take: The danger of calling behavior ‘biblical’

Editor's Note: Rachel Held Evans is a popular blogger from Dayton, Tennessee, and author of “A Year of Biblical Womanhood.”

By Rachel Held Evans, Special to CNN

On "The Daily Show" recently, Jon Stewart grilled Mike Huckabee about a TV ad in which Huckabee urged voters to support “biblical values” at the voting box.

When Huckabee said that he supported the “biblical model of marriage,” Stewart shot back that “the biblical model of marriage is polygamy.”

And there’s a big problem, Stewart went on, with reducing “biblical values” to one or two social issues such as abortion and gay marriage, while ignoring issues such as poverty and immigration reform.

It may come as some surprise that as an evangelical Christian, I cheered Stewart on from my living room couch.

As someone who loves the Bible and believes it to be the inspired word of God, I hate seeing it reduced to an adjective like Huckabee did. I hate seeing my sacred text flattened out, edited down and used as a prop to support a select few political positions and platforms.

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And yet evangelicals have grown so accustomed to talking about the Bible this way that we hardly realize we’re doing it anymore. We talk about “biblical families,” “biblical marriage,” “biblical economics,” “biblical politics,” “biblical values,” “biblical stewardship,” “biblical voting,” “biblical manhood,” “biblical womanhood,” even “biblical dating” to create the impression that the Bible has just one thing to say on each of these topics - that it offers a single prescriptive formula for how people of faith ought to respond to them.

But the Bible is not a position paper. The Bible is an ancient collection of letters, laws, poetry, proverbs, histories, prophecies, philosophy and stories spanning multiple genres and assembled over thousands of years in cultures very different from our own.

When we turn the Bible into an adjective and stick it in front of another loaded word, we tend to ignore or downplay the parts of the Bible that don’t quite fit our preferences and presuppositions. In an attempt to simplify, we force the Bible’s cacophony of voices into a single tone and turn a complicated, beautiful, and diverse holy text into a list of bullet points we can put in a manifesto or creed. More often than not, we end up more committed to what we want the Bible to say than what it actually says.

Nowhere is this more evident than in conversations surrounding “biblical womanhood.”

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Growing up in the Bible Belt, I received a lot of mixed messages about the appropriate roles of women in the home, the church and society, each punctuated with the claim that this or that lifestyle represented true “biblical womanhood.”

In my faith community, popular women pastors such as Joyce Meyer were considered unbiblical for preaching from the pulpit in violation of the apostle Paul's restriction in 1 Timothy 2:12 ("I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent"), while Amish women were considered legalistic for covering their heads in compliance with his instructions in 1 Corinthians 11:5 ("Every woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head").

Pastors told wives to submit to their husbands as the apostle Peter instructed in 1 Peter 3:1, but rarely told them to avoid wearing nice jewelry as the apostle instructs them just one sentence later in 1 Peter 3:3. Despite the fact that being single was praised by both Jesus and Paul, I learned early on that marriage and motherhood were my highest callings, and that Proverbs 31 required I keep a home as tidy as June Cleaver's.

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This didn’t really trouble me until adulthood, when I found myself in a childless egalitarian marriage with a blossoming career and an interest in church leadership and biblical studies. As I wrestled with what it meant to be a woman of faith, I realized that, despite insistent claims that we don’t “pick and choose” from the Bible, any claim to a “biblical” lifestyle requires some serious selectivity.

After all, technically speaking, it is “biblical” for a woman to be sold by her father to pay off debt, “biblical” for a woman to be required to marry her rapist, “biblical” for her to be one of many wives.

So why are some Bible passages lifted out and declared “biblical,” while others are explained away or simply ignored? Does the Bible really present a single prescriptive lifestyle for all women?

These were the questions that inspired me to take a page from A.J. Jacobs, author of "The Year of Living Biblically", and try true biblical womanhood on for size—literally, no “picking and choosing."

This meant, among other things, growing out my hair, making my own clothes, covering my head whenever I prayed, abstaining from gossip, remaining silent in church (unless I was “prophesying,” of course), calling my husband "master,” even camping out in my front yard during my period to observe the Levitical purity laws that rendered me unclean.

During my yearlong experiment, I interviewed a variety of women practicing biblical womanhood in different ways — an Orthodox Jew, an Amish housewife, even a polygamist family - and I combed through every commentary I could find, reexamining the stories of biblical women such as Deborah, Ruth, Hagar, Tamar, Mary Magdalene, Priscilla and Junia.

My goal was to playfully challenge this idea that the Bible prescribes a single lifestyle for how to be a woman of faith, and in so doing, playfully challenge our overuse of the term “biblical.” I did this not out of disdain for Scripture, but out of love for it, out of respect for the fact that interpreting and applying the Bible is a messy, imperfect and - at times - frustrating process that requires humility and grace as we wrestle the text together.

The fact of the matter is, we all pick and choose. We’re all selective in our interpretation and application of the biblical text. The better question to ask one another is why we pick and choose the way that we do, why we emphasis some passages and not others. This, I believe, will elevate the conversation so that we’re using the Bible, not as a blunt weapon, but as a starting point for dialogue.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Rachel Held Evans.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Bible • Christianity • Opinion

soundoff (4,657 Responses)
  1. Get Real

    Do I understand correctly?

    A good person who has never committed a crime but never accepted Jesus dies. Therefore, they go to hell and burn in pain forever.

    A mass murderer accepts Christ and asks for forgives through Christ just before he is executed for his crimes. He goes to heaven and is rewarded with eternal peace and happiness.

    Such is the belief of most American Christians who would say the above story is grounded in biblical "truth". Really?

    November 18, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • Doomed

      You haven't, nothing proves that the murderer will go to heaven, it is not us who decide, but God himself. If you don't feel comfortable with it then talk to him and tell him you don't like the way he work things out.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
    • was blind, but now I see

      @Get Real; "Do I understand correctly? A good person who has never committed a crime but never accepted Jesus dies. Therefore, they go to hell and burn in pain forever."

      Who is this person? Do you know him/her?

      November 18, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
    • wifemomchristian

      What Happens When You Die?

      Have you ever wondered what happens immediately following death? Most of us have thought about this at some time or other. There is an account in the New Testament which supplies us with much information about what happens to our souls immediately following death. This account was given by Jesus. It is recorded in Luke 16:19-31.

      Jesus told about two men. One man was very rich. He had everything he desired. The other man, Lazarus, was very poor. He was also sick. He lay at the gate of the rich man’s house and begged for the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table.

      After a time Lazarus died. The rich man also died. Just as there was a great difference in life between the two men, so there is also a great difference in death. However, the situation is now reversed. Lazarus was “carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom.” But the rich man “lifted up his eyes, being in torments.”

      There are many very valuable lessons which we can learn from this account. One lesson is that wealth, power, and social position do not extend beyond life on earth. The rich man had all of these, but he went to a place of torment. Lazarus had none of these things in this life, but he was in a place of happiness after death.

      Another lesson is that consciousness continues beyond the grave. Some think that when one dies, he is simply unconscious until the resurrection. This is not true! The body sleeps in the grave. The soul does not. Memory also continues beyond the grave. The rich man was fully conscious. He recognized Lazarus. He remembered he had five brothers back on the earth. He was concerned about them, and begged Abraham to send Lazarus back to preach to them, so that they would not come to the place of torment where he was.

      Many fathers and mothers after death will remember their children and how they failed to teach them about God when they had the opportunity.They will long for someone to teach them so that they will not come to be with them in torment. Many will remember with deep regret the opportunities they had to prepare for death while on earth, but did not take advantage of them.

      Still another lesson that Jesus taught in this account is that after death, there is no second chance. The rich man begged for Abraham to “send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue,” but Abraham refused. He pointed out that “there is a great gulf fixed” and that none could cross over it.

      God has given us the time that we have on this earth so that we can prepare for death: “The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is long-suffering to you-ward, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9). Once death comes, it is too late! There are only two possible places to go when we die. There is the place of the blessed where Lazarus went. This is the place where God’s faithful children go to await the resurrection and the Judgment. There is also the place of torment where the rich man went. This is the place where people go at death who have taken no thought for God and for doing His will during their lifetime on earth.

      What about you? Are you prepared for death? Life on earth is uncertain! We have no assurance that we will live to see tomorrow. Death is certain! The Bible warns: “Come now, ye that say, To-day or to-morrow we will go into this city, and spend a year there, and trade, and get gain: whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. What is your life? For ye are a vapor, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.” (James 4:13-14).

      The Bible also says, “behold, now is the acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2). Begin today while there is time. Believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of God (John 8:24). He alone is “the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6). Only through Christ can we be saved eternally (Acts 4:11-12). Repent of all your past sins (Acts 17:30-31). Confess your faith in Christ as the Son of God (Acts 8:37). Be buried with Him in baptism to have your sins washed away (Romans 6:4; Acts 22:16). Then serve Christ faithfully in His church for the rest of your life, and you will be blessed throughout all eternity. “Fear not the things which thou art about to suffer...Be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life” (Revelation 2:10). A place of peace and rest awaits faithful children of God at death.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
    • Evangelical

      Without God, no person can be good for He is the source of all goodness.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
    • RichardSRussell

      You understand SOMETHING correctly, namely that there are tons of people in America who believe that load of crapola.
       
      Do you understand correctly that it actually works that way? Zero evidence to support anything remotely like it. But you knew that.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
    • Get Real

      Fortunately god is imaginary, otherwise he would be an evil monster.

      Some examples of god's most evil ways:
      1. Murdering innocent children during the flood
      2. Murdering Job's family
      3. Telling Abraham to kill his son
      4. Killing the innocent first born children in Egypt
      5. Requiring a human sacrifice for the salvation of mankind

      November 18, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
    • End Religion

      I love the 3-4 responses from religious people that all danced around saying 'yes' to the OP. The machinations these people go through to cover for religious absurdity after absurdity is entertaining.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
    • Doomed

      @Getreal

      Why don't you wait the day you will die to tell God himself all that? If there is no God then you're safe, otherwise you're in trouble. There is nothing we can help you with here.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
    • Evangelical

      @Get Real

      What is the standard of morality that you use to call God evil? God cannot be evil. He is by definition good.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:37 pm |
    • What IF

      Doomed: "If there is no God then you're safe, otherwise you're in trouble. "

      This is another tired repeti.tion of Pascal's Wager -

      - What if the real "God" is Allah, or Vishnu, or Zeus, or Quetzalcoatl, or any of the other of thousands which have been dreamed up over the centuries? Some of them are very jealous and vengeful and will relegate you to nasty places for not worshiping them. You'd better cover your butt by believing in ALL of them and fulfill their wishes and demands.

      - What if the real "God" prefers those who use logic and reason and punishes you as a silly sycophant?

      - What if the real "God" detests those who believe something just to cover their butts in eternity?

      November 18, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
    • Get Real

      Reason is the moral compass. God who kills and tortures people is bad, but thankfully imaginary.

      Theocratic evangelical christians are scary and anti-American and would take away our rights to free speech and freedom of religion (or lack there of). Believe what ever you want, but do not force your beliefs upon me. As Patrick Henry said "I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it". I stand by this great American TRUTH. That said, I hope you give me the same basic American rights...

      The bible is a book of myths and lies. God is imaginary and so is hell. If God were real he would be an evil monster. Who gives a rat's behind what the bible say's because it's pure fiction. How can you worship a god that has killed innocent children? If you worship the god of the bible you worship an evil murderer. Thank god that god is imaginary. Only a monster would make people knowing that they would eventually wind up in hell- especially when he had the choice to not make them at all, thus saving them from eternal torture.

      Satan good. God bad. But only from a mythological point of view, because they are both imaginary. Check out http://www.godisimaginary.com

      Praise Lucifer, the bringer of truth, light and reason! Hail Satan, the imaginary adversary to an imaginary god, who has the balls to fight against god's evil ways! Glory be to the mythical beings of Lucifer and Satan who shall slay the evil mythical God of Abraham!!!! Remember what I said about free speech? Are you American enough to accept this concept?

      November 18, 2012 at 4:49 pm |
    • Get Real

      Reason is my moral compass. The bible is a book of myths and lies and the god described therein does not have even a shrewd of moral decency.

      If god is all powerful and all knowing and perfectly good, he would not bring people into the world knowing that they would go to hell and be tortured forever- a perfectly good being would never do such a thing.

      If god is all powerful and all knowing and perfectly EVIL, then god would create people knowing in advance they were going to burn in hell forever. Therefore God is pure EVIL, so fortunatley he imaginary too.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:52 pm |
    • Bill

      @Evangelical
      What standard of morality are you talking about? The evil things are written in your sacred book! Do you believe in the Bible? Do you believe in every sentence of the Bible? If yes, then God is evil. If not you are not a true Christian and just cherry picking in what you believe from the Bible. Hundreds of Gods have been cherished over thousands of year at different times and by different peoples. You can't be serious that all of those Gods are real? Why not believe in Zeus? The Greeks believed in him as much as you do in Jesus! Who is right and on what basis, you or the Greek? If one has a little brain, it obvious that all this nonsense can't be true. And it's also dangerous when for example Bush thought that God told him to run over Iraq and many similar things that happened throughout history.

      November 18, 2012 at 6:20 pm |
  2. was blind, but now I see

    @Sue; "In the Bible, there are verses that clearly indicate that the unborn are not yet persons, and that harming the unborn is not murder. See the problem?"

    Please post them. Thanks.

    November 18, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
    • MashaSobaka

      If you beat a pregnant woman and cause a miscarriage (but don't kill her), you pay whatever fine the husband demands of you. If you beat a pregnant woman and kill her, the usual eye-for-an-eye, life-for-a-life laws are in effect and you are put to death. Exodus 21:22-24.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
    • was blind, but now I see

      You need to get a KJV Bible and concordance. Here is what it really says:

      If men 582 strive 5327 , and hurt 5062 a woman 802 with child 2030, so that her fruit 3206 depart 3318, and yet no mischief follow 611: he shall be surely 6064 punished 6064 , according as the woman's 802 husband 1167 will lay 7896 upon him; and he shall pay 5414 as the judges 6414 [determine]. And if [any] mischief follow 611, then thou shalt give 5414 life 5315 for life 5315,

      In other words, if the baby (H3206) flows out of her (H3318) yet no mischief follows (the baby does not die)..... but if mischief does follow (the baby does die)........then thou shalt give life for life.....

      November 18, 2012 at 5:15 pm |
  3. Evangelical

    If there is any doubt that atheists are immoral, just look at their behaviour on a blog for believers.

    November 18, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      So you are an atheist now?

      November 18, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
    • RichardSRussell

      If there is any doubt that atheists are immoral, just look at their representation in America's prison population.
       
      Not that I think you'll actually do it, so here's the spoiler: virtually none. Christians, OTOH, substantially over-represented.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
    • truth be told

      In prison the believer tends to have parole more readily available. The atheist not being bound by any moral sense is under no obligation to be truthful as to belief affiliation. A convicted atheist whose family is Christian or the fact that that same atheist once walked by a church is all the evidence required for an atheist to lie about its belief status. Not that unusual at all.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
    • Doomed

      Atheists it's not us believers that you hurts when you insults God or Jesus or the Bible. you're hurting yourselves only, there is nothing we can do to stop you from doing it. But if you are wrong and when you die you find out that indeed there is a God then you are in trouble and again there is nothing we can do to help you either.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
    • Evangelical

      @Richard

      LMAO. Most of the people in prison are atheists until they discover that finding Jesus will make it easier for them to get parole or avoid the death penality.

      Also, there is more to morality than just not committing crimes. Far more.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
    • Mickey1313

      Hay, it is a blog ABOUT belief, not FOR believers. And at least the non believers don't waste there lives worrying about an imaginary after life

      November 18, 2012 at 4:37 pm |
  4. GetReal

    I wish she had posted pics of her camping in the front yard, That had to be nasty!

    November 18, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
  5. John 3: 16

    Christians, the Bible is its own defense. Look at the Middle East, the prophecies in the Bible are coming true. Goto bed in peace knowing you have the Word of God by your side as a Sure Guide, don't argue with the unbelievers, no need wasting hours and days about a Living Bible. It's ALIVE, don't doubt it. It work in my life. Unbelievers will definitely realize it whether on earth on afterlife. God I pray they realize it in this life.

    November 18, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      My Word Which Lays Upon Truths' Opening the Door

      Mathew 6:33 "But seek ye first the kingdom of God!"

      Luke 17:21, "The kingdom of God is inside you!"

      John 18:36 Jesus answered, "My kingdom is not of this world!"

      1Corinthians 3:9 "For we are labourers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, [ye are] God's building!"

      The troubles with trinitarians, those who belly-up to one god times three is, they read but only into it and get very little out of what they make 'go-spellingly' in amplifications of unblessed pleasings. Their preaching in devilish tongues beatifies only the dumb-hearted relics of their christiandumbness's idiosyncratic marmoset-like redundancies. Their godly moralisms are but self-centered and self-censored upon redundant principles that are remorsefully archaic in cultured relics being those old fuddy duddies who fumble ever for their next glass worth of wine! Drunk and in tempormental stupors are the emotionally fallen in christiandumbs folds becoming sciatic pragmatisms unworthy of even one toasting for, but rather against!

      Godless and the ungodly, for these are the choices from which commonwealth atheists do make felt upon their habitual senses denying the goodly of ever moving ways of Godly intent. Many young-bucks of godlessness and the ungodly tender to avail themselves with the nailed doldrums' sciatica and do abound with much societal unpleasantries toward the abaters of wanton deniabilities against them, those ungodly and godless beings of smirked vials of randomized intention-abilities. Their deniabilities are not without compromising or so they do entail and also do weave upon the where-with-alls laments.

      The mockeries of these godless and ungodly against the goodly who do themselves believe upon Godly importance may well live on past all and onto every garden's Aged endings. How else could Life Truly End and Real Living thusly Begin? To believe or not believe for these are Life's choices. Christ Jesus came to this world to condemn it and yet did He come here to also show how tenderly His mercies upon those being most merciful to others who did so to deserve mercy to be freely given by Him! To believe or not believe for these are Life's choices. Still yet are found mercies, for the mercifilled are one of Life's greatest treasures and livings' sweetest unending rewards.

      God does never change His spiritualism for His Holy Spirit is the Great Sea of Absolute Nothingness! Always was and is and will ever be no matter what matters of materialized shapes do tend to seemingly clutter up His spiritual abundancy It is truth that God has troubles within the fractal paradigms of inter-cellular cosmologies as protruding 'activists' are sometimes revolting against the grains of our embodied sanctifications creating many undulations of travesties not uncommonly being viewed by us celestial beings as being viral and bacteriological in the way we understand things to be and become. What was first made can never again become that which was made first for only in varying differential constructs can another thing be made to be outdone against that which was firstly made. The pillars of one's DNA, the spirals of all celestial life forms and formations is where God's Sons and their given wives are taken in as residents there abouts.

      The Kingdom Domains of God lay where the inner structures of celestial Life do share in the abundancies of Living Fractals in Inter-Cellular Cosmological Paradigms. As mankinds' continual hunting for the Codifying of Life's laws in Cellularized Confinements continues onwards, many folks will ever become unendingly complacent upon our societal grandeurs for wanting sakes, trying valiantly never to be outdone by those who tend to be in broadest simplifications' adjuring. May we be merciful upon those who deservidely aspire to be merciful toward others.

      A scattering is upon us in these trying days and Age. Leave therefore your harshest wantings behind and never take wind of one's longings for the weightiness of one's longings will smite even the most influential. Carry away nothing and leave. Head to the places inside one's being and do not keep ajar your door for many will want to enter in and should not. Your loving this Life is for the world to have needs of and you should not heed the rumors from others as to just what is truly right. It is therefore best for mankind to simmer in their yet unfinished juvenile pottages never rationalizingly 'assaying' one's diffuse detriments, the very smallest of life's grains. As smitten breeds, our splendors reveal one's characters to be traitorous to one's analogous fold. Where then does true life really end and real living truly begin?

      Who before this day's Age is found those worthy of Goodly praises? Who after us will find peace set before them? Who in today;s timeline is this "son of man" that many should fear him for his worthiness stance? Who above can see the below? Who that is below can see what be above? From the very smallest crevice to the most high chasms, the Sea of Nothingness is the Holy Spirit. May the elemental gods find favor in this found son of man that he may not be afflicted with this world's power but rather he should carry upon him the angst from his manhood till his natural death.

      What I spiritually believe in is that the Families of God including God Himself lives upon the very first created Cosmos which is the Inner Cosmos. Our being but upon this celestial cosmos is due our being cast out of the Inner Cosmos for many reasons. Some were cast out of this Inner Cosmos for faulterings of waywardness and some for willingly wanting to continue to do the Lord's Will here upon this celestial realm of gigantic life forms whereupon their insides are living many families of God's members. We live upon this realm doing what we want while many of us unify ourselves in the communal. My way is not your way and yet when we cross paths we receive each other and after a spell do walk on and are parted.Therefore, walk placidly amid the noise and waste ever being mindful of the peace one finds in finding peace there about.

      Is God to be made a mockery by those who tend to instill anti-leveraged pragmatisms? Are we to believe in the godless and the ungodly who care little about the piecemeal subjectives' ordinates?

      Jesus, was the very first of many immeasurable 'elemental beings' and was in the Beginning an elemental king of all the elemental Gods. Jesus, in His cunning, did thru Chaos' manueverings, established the gravimetrical waves for the elementals to gather in broods thusly was formed the beginnings of celestial nebulas.

      As time did force the nebulas to progressively surround the gravimetric oscillations where from did come about galactic formations of the elementals' soundness. As systems of photonic elementals, the infinitesimal finite elemental Gods did shower the solarized systems with their embodied beings. And in the Now, we are but made from the photonic elementals' stillnesses, the stardusts of the Ages.

      My "Physicist" knows very well the quantum physicalities of natured atomic stimulations. I call this "Physicist" God. He has strewn His Sea of Nothingness with 'photogenitisms' or the stillness of the photons creating all manner of the first materials needed to become thru timeliness all the elementals' members of our declared Periodic Table of Materialized Photogenitis.

      Microbiologists are today's inner-seeking astrophysicists for they are searching among our embodied core-roots to find answers regarding biological fractals of inner cosmological paradigms. We truly are God's buildings! Some of our bodies are condominiums and some are for storage purposes and some are the temples where God's family members and His servants do pay homages in. 1Corinthians 3:9 "For we are labourers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, [ye are] God's building!"

      Sciences are but the dreams dreamt and are atheists' treasure troves of good books they hardly ever do read, for many atheists aren't too bright yet they stand by these scientists without one iota of deniability to question science books that even the commoner seldom reads nor truly understands. Who among us knows about that 'Self-Similar Cosmological Paradigm' lays open the doors to Cosmologies of the Fractal kinds? Who among us truly understands that energy equals mass times light squared and its' true potential? What is the point in adoring scientific reasoning when one's IQ level can be counted on ten fingers?

      1Corinthians 3:9 "For we are labourers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, [ye are] God's building!"

      Inside of the Fractals within Bio-Cosmological Paradigms lays all inter-cellular activities only just recently becoming known by mankinds' Sciences. All religions have been left in the dustiness sideroads where Truth does prevail upon many of mankind's teachers students of Bio-Technicalities wanting to willingly know about the kingdoms of God which lay upon the insides of all celestially nomenclatured biological life forms and life formations.

      As this Age of Great Enlightenments upon the Kingdoms of God does progressively teach one is taught from its outward creviced distances toward almost absolute finiteness or the very very smallest of distinguishable degrees, God will allow our students and teachers of such studies to meaningfully create biologic mechanisms for the better welfare of all our physical needs and trade orientated desires.

      What I believe is; "The Cosmos is immeasurably full of ever unkowable to us universes." The 'analogous' variabilities of moving universes is so slow in their plights that trillions upon trillions times triliions of our years will pass by before any other universe will gain entrances onto any other universe. As our Ages of tenureships figuratively coalesce in the extemities ponderances, the forlorn and the 'un-abled' will ever need others to carry them along and alongside the tapestries of Life and its garnered adaptabilities. Love therefore and do never 'not' love for one would be wasting away their love for living and the need for loving is tantamount and above reproach.

      I feel a compelling want to tell you about some verses in Gospel scripture. Is it not written to above all things to seek firstly the "Kingdom of God". This said, have you ascribed to doing so? Where does one look to or towards in order to find that which we are told to seek as scripture does declare one to do?

      Mathew 6:33 "But seek ye first the kingdom of God."

      I've searched the Gospel writings and have found a single verse telling all who have found it as to the true and literal location of God's Kingdomly Domains!

      Luk 17:21 "The kingdom of God is inside you."

      I take Luke 17:21 quite literally and so should all who believe in One God and His One Son of perhaps oodles upon oodles of otherly Sons and Daughters too numerous to really expound upon! Christ is special because he was born to take upon his being the sins of those who were and then were also and of times yet to come! God's Kingdoms being inside us and within our ownliness bodies can also be associated with another verse of scripture ,,,,

      ,
      1Corinthians 3:9 For we are labourers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, [ye are] God's building.

      The just above verse does tell much more than just glimpsing over it could proclude! Our being labourers with God may well seem to give us all an equal footing with God and his aspirations for our betterment's sakes! His being our husbandry may well regard God as having a firm footing in our conceptions of childbirthing beyond mere genetic understandings!

      But in the aboveness verse, the very understanding that we or our bodies are God's buildings may well inspire one to disavow such a claim due one's foresightedness sakes and lacking of rationalisms' of credible resources. Yet, as I see things, we, our bodies are not only God established and God created buildings for the benefits of the Godly who reside inside of us, but are for our benefits for learning and understanding the precepts of "Fractal Cosmologies"!

      We have seen that which our bodies are made up of and they are of cellularized structures not "unlike" nebula structures in outer space places! These celestial nebula structures are yet a work-in-progress and our body-like buildings are a progress in the works!

      While the charge is truthful that Christ will never come back, our problems regarding life after death does ever remain. If one does so believe that nothingness is one's finality, then, so be they, however if one faithfully believes in a hereafter, they may well be faithfully rewarded no matter how small their faith is bequeathed upon them. The Great Sea of Nothingness does not come about without perilless underpinnings whereupon the common atheist concerns are afforded them. Freezing Cold is this Great Sea of Nothingness and colder still may well become of the atheists who declare upon nothingness to be their finalities' End means. Like hell's fury does Nothingness's cold strike out! Only the very devoted atheists might garner the freezing bitter cold of Nothingness for Christ was never of them even though words were said to them being those ungodly and godless souls of deniabilities aggressions!

      What is the reasoning for Life? Are we to believe that nothingness is the ultimate conclusion of Life? Just how long did it take Life to create mankind? Kindly consider all the nuances and reasonings for the world's establishing of a biosphere wherein to place mankind upon. Why should such a sphere ever be needed if not for a sound reason? To stand upon the premise that 'naturalistic' phenoms made the world what is now is so falsely unreasoning that it puts assunder the amazing feat that creation itself did play out here amid a rock being at just the right place within the sun's solar system to give rise to mankind! Who'd have guessed we were made right, right here upon this rock?

      These words are revelations of my Faith as to my Godly understandings regarding the Kingdom Domains of God, his Sons and his Daughters-in-law and all forms and mannerisms of Life-ever-lasting principles and principalities of ever living progressives!

      Written by God's Oldest Dreamer

      November 18, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
    • RichardSRussell

      Biblical prophecies are coming true, eh? You can't get out of the very 1st chapter of the very 1st book of the New Testament without a giant whopper of a failed prophecy: Matthew 1:23,25. And the irony is that this verse is read from practically every Protestant pulpit on the planet every year at Xmas, and NOBODY EVER NOTICES! Talk about yer willful ignorance.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • was blind, but now I see

      @RichardSRussell; "Biblical prophecies are coming true, eh? You can't get out of the very 1st chapter of the very 1st book of the New Testament without a giant whopper of a failed prophecy: Matthew 1:23,25. And the irony is that this verse is read from practically every Protestant pulpit on the planet every year at Xmas, and NOBODY EVER NOTICES! Talk about yer willful ignorance."

      Ok. Humor me. Nobody notices what?

      November 18, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
    • RichardSRussell

      Duly humored:

      "(23) Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name IMMANU-EL, which being interpreted is, God with us. ...
      "(25) and ... she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS." —Matthew 1:23,25

      November 18, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
    • End Religion

      "was blind, but now I see" – why do non-believers have to keep pointing out verses to you? Don't you know your book of rules?

      November 18, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      John 3: 16,

      For this world knows not the time nor the place for the 'son of man' and his coming upon this world to make judgement upon the world's governance. Behold you now the time is upon mankind for this 'son of man' is now placed in mankind's midsts. He does see much goodness upon many lands and he does also see much bitterness as well. This son of but a simple minded man knows well the bitterness of torments and much of the social egress. The tears that flows from this man's son is bitter with much consolations gathering together as wasted nuptials being leveraged by time's undoing. The angst of one man's son is but now the two-folded spark of leavened thanks giving and no more trickeries to be unfolded upon mankind!

      November 18, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
  6. Mark

    She says "The Bible is an ancient collection of letters, laws, poetry, proverbs, histories, prophecies, philosophy and stories spanning multiple genres and assembled over thousands of years in cultures very different from our own." True enough, but also forgeries and fabrications. It was in 1807 that Schliermacher first said Paul couldn't have written Ephesians. The syntax, style and content were too different from other of Paul's. There are two creation stories (Gen 1 and 2) and two nativity stories (Matt. and Luke). They don't agree. Did a guy really live in a fish for several days? did 3 guys survive in a furnace. Sound like mythology? Read Bart Ehrman and Albert Schweitzer before you decide for your self.

    November 18, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
  7. tony

    "Pro-Life" = anti-abortion + pro Israel precision bombing a man's civilian home, so as to kill his wife young children.

    November 18, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
    • tony

      (and nine) young children

      November 18, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
    • Doomed

      And they all did that because your science have invented weapons of mass destruction. Way to go atheists you're views and goals are creating a better world to live in don't you think?

      November 18, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
    • J

      Fortunately your assertion is unfound in the facts: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hamas#Proximity_to_civilians_during_warfare

      November 18, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
    • .

      I don't suppose you've heard of the 1,000 plus incendiary rockets that have been let loose unmercifully on the Israeli population? Or has anyone told you, for instance, that Hamas purposely places their missile launchers among its civilian population, on the roofs of hospitals, schools, and apartment buildings?

      How would you feel if it was YOUR home?

      November 18, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • tony

      Sorry, the home was deliberately targeted,as were the homes of several other Hamas officials. See IDF statements.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
    • Surthurfurd

      Science is a procedural tool. It did not cause people to do anything. The fact that a person can use his fist to hit someone does not mean that the hand is innately evil.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  8. J

    Haha this article is great. It points the utterly confusing and paradoxical nature of believing that Jesus magically makes some precepts in the bible not required to be followed yet others essential!

    Yes yes i wonder why romans magically wanted to become christian. The operative word is EASY!

    November 18, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
  9. John 3: 16

    Let's complete what Huckabee said in the interview that the blogger left out about polygamy, "Biblical Model is Adam and Eve, Polygamy came much later than that and was later repudiated, because Jesus said, "A man shall leave his mother and father, and a woman shall leave her home and the two shall be one flesh. That is the Biblical model." I'm leaving, and may not come back. God have mercy on the readers, for they shall see you one day.

    November 18, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
    • tony

      And god help the "handy" hand maiden.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
  10. Evangelical

    I'm sick of these atheists who hang out on a blog for believers. They are a petty and cynical bunch. But they are in the minority in America, and I for one am thankful to God for that.

    November 18, 2012 at 4:07 pm |
    • Answer

      Do cry more. We'll be in your face til your kind dies off completely.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Hey genius, this is a blog about belief, not for believers. Moron.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
    • Doomed

      Don't worry you're not alone, we are all sick of them too.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
    • tony

      The minority that just won the election by a majority?

      November 18, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
    • Evangelical

      @Tony

      I thought the Democrats won the election. Didn't know that all Democrats were atheists.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
    • tony

      The people won the election. And rejected a man who claimed he was mormon-christian.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
    • was blind, but now I see

      @tony; "The minority that just won the election by a majority?"

      Only because they want the (supposed) handouts. How does that make them so moral?

      November 18, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
    • tony

      I think they rejected the idea of continuing the current handouts to the tiny minority who effectively rule us. Zero tax on dividends, capital gains treatment of carried interest, to name just a couple.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  11. Belief Blog Bistro

    Try our new Prayer-Bot Burrito! It is packed full of rice, beans and cheese. Your choice of chicken, carne asada, or carnitas. $7.99. (Wet add $2.00)

    November 18, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
  12. Crystal

    As an evangelical Christian your a liar from the pits of hell! Let me interpret the bible for you....if you mislead or prophecy falsely you have committed a huge punishable act of God! I will never INTERPRET the bible...I read it and ask God to give me a meaning from it...which is obviously something you do not do! I bet you interpret it as its ok to get the chip too, don't you? Which means your not a Christian, you are another false leader to lead weak Christians to hell with you! This is Santana's playground and mainstream media are liars and can't be trusted to start with...so how about you stick to something you know which is being told what to do by your bosses and leave God out of it! Do not fall for this false deception folks! If you walk the gray area with God there is no use for you in the kingdom of heaven....he even says be hot or cold...not lukewarm...misinterpret that! Your sole depends on it!

    November 18, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      My gods write clearly and succinctly so I can understand without interpretation. Your god must be an idiot!

      November 18, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
    • Surthurfurd

      How do you know what is right when there are many who likewise are reading the same text and "understanding" it differently?

      November 18, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • GetReal

      Santana's playground.......Oye Como Va!

      November 18, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
    • tony

      God told you to watch the heavens for signs. (Gen 1:14). I bet you don't 😦

      November 18, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
  13. Dr. D. Johnson

    We know that Jesus was a practicing Buddhist monk, not a rabbi.

    We know that Jesus was married.

    We know that Jesus was a bit of a free spirit and had a volatile temper.

    We know that the so called "missionary position" was so named after Jesus walked in on Mary Magdalene and Joseph having relations. He condemned their activities saying, "...you have soiled my sheets, you have confused my mission and compromised my position."

    November 18, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
  14. Dr. D. Johnson

    If you read both Timothy and Phillip, there are passages which describe in detail that Jesus was cremated.

    We know this because his friends were asked to take his ashes to the Sea of Galilee and deposit them over, "...the lapping waves of His Father's own sink basin".

    Furthermore we read in a passage from Timothy that, “…the ashes were as grains of sand. I have tasted his body.” This passage is thought to have been incorrectly translated into the last supper myth.

    November 18, 2012 at 4:03 pm |
    • RichardSRussell

      I think you're straining credulity quite a lot with that "in detail", doc.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
  15. Surthurfurd

    Where are all the Fundamentalists who are mad because days to revere God are turned into economic programs? Where are all the Conservatives who are mad because days to recognize veterans are turned into days to make sales?

    November 18, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
    • tony

      Gone shopping.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
  16. John 3: 16

    "When you are told at the job: - "We are going to release you. - We're downsizing; - we no longer need your services." When your teenage daughter says to you: - "I'm pregnant." When your spouse says: - "I am no longer satisfied in this marriage." When your doctor looks you in the eyes & says: - "There is nothing more we can do." What holds you together when all hell breaks loose around you? Upon what do you lean? - Where do you turn? - What is your crutch?

    The Bible provides sound guidance in times of real crisis in the words of Proverbs 3:5-6. - I spoke on this passage last week. - I want to return to it again today. This is good advice for every father! - This is good advice for everybody! "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, & lean not on your own understanding; - In all your ways acknowledge Him, & He shall direct your paths."

    If we can not lean on your own understanding - than upon what shall we lean? - Let me suggest what we can lean upon - in all the bitter experiences of life.

    1. Lean Upon His Word!

    Psalm 119:105 says: - "Your word is a lamp to my feet, & a light for my path" (NIV). The Bible is the resting place of our cares - our worries - our griefs - our tragedies - our sorrows - & even our surprises! God's Word is the answer to our question - the end of our search. It provides the solid foundation upon which we can lean! It gives us sure footing when we are surrounded by a swamp of uncertainty.

    In God's Word we discover His opinion - His counsel - His commands - His desires - His warnings - His very mind - His will for us. God's Word provides comfort & help & wisdom & hope. It is a road map that leads us through the pit falls of life. If I had one wish - it would be that God's people would rediscover God's Holy Word! Meditate upon it; - dwell upon its meaning, its message. Let it saturate your mind & your heart! While the Bible is not simplistic - it is simple. It is the simple truth that holds you together in the most complex situations!

    November 18, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
    • Ben

      Then God flip-flops more than Mitt Romney.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:01 pm |
    • tony

      Verbose Guidance and zero actual help.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
    • WeWereOnTheMoon

      sure, ignorance can help during tough times, this is an exact reason why people invented God. There is nothing worse for our minds then uncertainty and helplessness, it is very tempting to imagine a higher being that knows what we don't and has explanation to everything. The real brave people of the world though, use knowledge and actually trying to figure out how the world works for real.And by doing this they actually saving lives and make life better for everyone including those who go to church and those who preach ancient fairy tales.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • End Religion

      That post is so sad. You don't have enough self reliance to think the issue through and work out some possible solutions yourself? Most of us have at least ONE friend or family member we could talk to if one *had* to seek advice, but even if one is all alone in the world, right from wrong should be pretty self-evident. You don't need a fraudulent book of lies to confuse the matter.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:12 pm |
  17. YoDaddee

    Odd, CSX, since YHVH purportedly ordered mass slaughter of innocent newborns and infants on multiple occasions.

    November 18, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
  18. WeWereOnTheMoon

    The "word of God" is actually our ( human ) subconscious talking. As we evolve, we are getting closer to actually becoming our selves the ones who's divine image we ones created. If God was real why wold people be so afraid of questioning his/her existence? The only thing that people are afraid of is the randomness of nature and responsibility that comes with being smart masters of life. But all this is changing, humanity is growing up and it is time to say goodby to our imaginary friends:)

    November 18, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
    • Bob Bales

      Whether or not people question my existence or whether or not they are afraid to do so has absolutely no effect on that existence. It is the same with God.

      November 18, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • kris de

      excellent!

      November 18, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
  19. YoDaddee

    Odd, since YHVH purportedly ordered mass slaughter of innocent newborns and infants on multiple occasions.

    November 18, 2012 at 3:56 pm |
    • RichardSRussell

      Not to mention omnicide — considerably more violent and horrifying than genocide, which involves only wiping out an entire race — during the Great Flood.
       
      Curiously, the very same people who will defend this action on the part of God on the theory that, since he created everything, he can wipe it all out if he chooses, seem not to take the same position with respect to parents and children.

      November 18, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
  20. Dr. D. Johnson

    In the Gospel of Truth, it states, "Jesus found the scribes to be ignorant and foul smelling..."

    These men were his employees and Jesus showed a discernible dislike for them. Perhaps out of jealousy that they were educated where he was not.

    The text goes on to say, "...and Jesus thought not of the female form, and from heaven came to remove ignorance"

    Again giving weight to the common thinking that Jesus was a homosexual

    November 18, 2012 at 3:55 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.