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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. yeahItsMe72

    Does anyone else remember the time pre late 1970s when the church was pro choice? It wasn't until a few political folks had the bible translation altered to imply the bible is against abortion that the modern day pro life movement was born to galvanize and control the religious voting block.

    I think that's my biggest danger of being biblical. If the book doesn't have a opinion on something that you like, just alter the interpretation/translation of the English to change it's meaning.

    November 18, 2012 at 9:28 pm |
    • WrshipWarior

      Does anyone remember pre-1973 when abortion was still considered murder of the innocent?

      November 18, 2012 at 9:31 pm |
    • Wisdom4U2

      Is there something about 'murder' that you don't understand? Just because the 'church' may say it's okay...well, it still just doesn't make it 'right'.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:31 pm |
    • DUMP HINDU ATHEISM, SELF CENTER ISM AND BE A TRUE AMERICAN IN FOLLOWING OF TRUTH ABSOLUTE GOD

      Dont you know, they are master's of wind, and GO WITH FLOW.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:31 pm |
    • Be honest

      looks like christians don't believe in heaven.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:33 pm |
    • DJones

      Unfortunately for your opinion the Bible is not debatable or of loose interpretation on this. The Bible states that God communes and talks to the baby in the womb while bringing it into existence. God does not talk to blobs.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:39 pm |
  2. Wisdom4U2

    It really doesn't matter what any of you all believe, 'cause there is a Heavenly Father....and you're not Him.

    November 18, 2012 at 9:22 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      How do you know that?

      November 18, 2012 at 9:22 pm |
    • Wisdom4U2

      @ apple bush ~~~
      'Cause I didn't create myself – and neither did you create yourself – and everything your eyes can see was created by someone/thing. And I'm smart enough to believe there is a Creator of All things....The Great 'I AM'.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:28 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      And again, how do you know that?

      November 18, 2012 at 9:31 pm |
    • Wisdom4U2

      'Cause I'm smart like that. :-)

      November 18, 2012 at 9:32 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Yeah, well...not so smart but ok.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:33 pm |
    • Peteyroo

      Nonsense4U2, you're a smart feller.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:34 pm |
    • Wisdom4U2

      :-) :-) :-) (Father, Son and Holy Ghost).... says 'Hi'.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:36 pm |
    • bosefasaurus

      Wisdom you are an idiot. You are using circular logic to prove your point. The god described in the Bible is a monster. Why anyone would want to worship such a being is unbelievable...

      November 18, 2012 at 9:38 pm |
    • Be honest

      wisdummy is into voodoo

      November 18, 2012 at 9:38 pm |
    • WrshipWarior

      @bosefasaurus: You are definitely reading a different Bible than I am.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:42 pm |
    • Wisdom4U2

      @ bowelface... ~~~
      Ha-ha ...and I guess I'm suppose to be offended by a bozo making a comment like you? Not! You're only showing how lazy you are by not using the 10% of the brain God gave you. Such a shame.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:43 pm |
    • Wisdom4U2

      'Be honest' is a very obese troll. Believe me, he's on every forum and his TCP/IP shows who he is. :-/

      November 18, 2012 at 9:47 pm |
    • Christian Drive By Post

      so wisdome is back into delusion I see

      November 18, 2012 at 9:53 pm |
    • Be honest

      My IP? you are funny. More make believe, huh?

      November 18, 2012 at 9:55 pm |
    • Wisdom4U2

      All the 'Anti-god' posters on here is actually only '1' lonely troll who uses different aliases. Poor thing. :-(

      November 18, 2012 at 10:03 pm |
    • Nathan

      Lucky for us all, your insistence on the state of reality, no matter how firm, does not actually make that reality true.

      Can you provide even one single shred of empirical evidence to support your claim that such a god being exists?

      November 18, 2012 at 10:25 pm |
  3. Belief Blog Bistro

    We made it, it's Happy Hour at the Belief Blog Bistro!

    Drink specials include:

    Tom Tom Collins (Gin)
    Apple Bush Martini (Gin or Vodka with Apple Liqueur)
    Lionly Libation (Scotch and Water)
    Hindu Hefeweizen (Beer)
    Sam Sazerac (Absinthe)
    Hawaii Paradise (Brandy)
    Soldier Singapore Sling (Gin)
    Akira Orange (Vodka)

    See you here!

    November 18, 2012 at 9:15 pm |
  4. YBP

    In the real world, there are no gods, there are no monsters, and there are no gods who behave like monsters, such as the god of the bible.

    In the real world, there are facts. There are people who dedicate their entire lives to attaining knowledge. There is also observable evidence of the way the world and nature work. There is science. Science tells us that the real world is entirely different from the world described in the bible.

    November 18, 2012 at 9:11 pm |
    • Attack of the 50 Foot Magical Underwear

      Shhhhh!! Logic!! Not allowed here!!!!!

      November 18, 2012 at 9:16 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Police arrested the mother of a 16-month-old toddler girl after they found her living inside a trailer in Cleveland, Texas, about a hour northeast of Houston, with cockroaches crawling all over her. After searching the property, police found a dead horse in the back yard along with other emaciated horses.

      When police entered the home they smelled what they believed to be rotting, decaying flesh and found a toddler with rashes and bug bites sitting among squalid conditions. Police removed the toddler from the house and placed her in the custody of child protective services.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:22 pm |
    • WrshipWarior

      And science is one of the greatest proponents of faith that there is. How else, but with faith, could one believe the world and all that we see with our eyes, hear with our ears, smell with our noses, etc. all came about as the result of some cosmic accidental explosion? That takes amazing faith. But I'm sorry to disagree with you: I would rather place my trust in the Creator of the universe who has designed a purpose for us all being here if we would just seek Him.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:25 pm |
    • Be honest

      don't use science in the same context of religion. Unless you're still into Blood Letting.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:37 pm |
    • Nathan

      @WrshipWarior: The acceptance of observable, EMPIRICAL evidence does not require "faith."

      November 18, 2012 at 10:38 pm |
  5. Mikey

    @Jason: The New Testament was cobble together under the supervision of the Emperor Constantine. The gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John were chosen by Constantine as the best choices to help him control people in his crumbling empire and the remailing "gnostic" gospels were discarded. So the New Testament is as much about controlling people as anything else......not so much the "word of God."

    November 18, 2012 at 9:05 pm |
    • Be honest

      they also threw out and burned the writings by the same authors that conflicted.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:10 pm |
    • Dick Izinya

      LOL, if Constantine hadn't seen an expedient way to cement political influence, all these religionists would love Zoroaster more than their own children.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:17 pm |
    • DUMP HINDU ATHEISM, SELF CENTER ISM AND BE A TRUE AMERICAN IN FOLLOWING OF TRUTH ABSOLUTE GOD

      If they are boy abuser in following of Zoroaster. best of them are catholic priest.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:30 pm |
    • Fisher of Men

      How did the Emperor Constantine expect to control the people when Jesus went around challenging the authorities? You don't control people when you give them a book that endorses such behavior. Even the disciples asked the authorities should we obey you or God then answered their own question by obeying God. No, you don't control people by encouraging them to read the Gospels.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:44 pm |
    • Akira

      They threw out many books that didn't jive with their notion of what Christianity should be portrayed as...

      November 18, 2012 at 9:46 pm |
  6. Trill Troll

    More like derp vader

    November 18, 2012 at 9:04 pm |
  7. darth vader

    I was once asked if i was a { member} quote of the group of atheist . and when i replied that i only believe in god igot toung whipped

    November 18, 2012 at 9:03 pm |
    • regenesis0

      Your sad devotion to no specific religion has not helped you conjure up those stolen data tapes.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:16 pm |
  8. Get Real

    This is fun! Thanks everyone! I am on a delta flight at30k feet on wifi. Sadly, my battery will soon die and I won't be able to play with all the Christians atheists and cool Satan peeps much longer.

    Great debate, just keep in mind what Martin Luther said- the founder of the Protestant church:

    There is on earth among all dangers no more dangerous thing than a richly endowed and adroit reason, especially if she enters into spiritual matters which concern the soul and God. For it is more possible to teach an ass to read than to blind such a reason and lead it right; for reason must be deluded, blinded, and destroyed." "Faith must trample underfoot all reason, sense, and understanding, and whatever it sees it must put out of sight, and wish to know nothing but the word of God.

    November 18, 2012 at 9:02 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Well, God delights in crashing planes and ruining lives so good luck up there.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:07 pm |
    • Attack of the 50 Foot Magical Underwear

      Don't forget that God was directing 9/11! I mean, the hijackers were praying to their god, and clearly their god was listening , right? In the words of Borat – Much Success!

      November 18, 2012 at 9:13 pm |
  9. shawbrooke

    As an evangelical Christian, you know that Christ himself did not demand Levitical laws from his followers, and you know that Christians follow Christ. You know that on marriage and family, the New Testament is pretty well consistent and that Christ released his followers from the Old. People can be Christians no matter what their status in life as pointed out by Paul often enough. (eg If you are married do not separate, if you are single do not look for a spouse) If your church supported marriage rather than single hood, that might not be Biblically consistent but their issues are no excuse for you to play around with what you know to be true to attract media attention. Be honest and tell us what you want.

    November 18, 2012 at 9:02 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      The word of god is only "pretty well consistent " LOL

      November 18, 2012 at 9:03 pm |
  10. Truth Life

    Is Jesus Christ the Son of God or is He Not
    Believe or Don't
    If you Believe Jesus is the Son of God then the Holy Spirit will inhabit you and take care of all the confusion.
    If you do not believe Jesus is the Son of God then you are welcome to keep whatever confusion you want.
    Whatever you choose Is your choice, enjoy it and leave each to their own.
    Jesus Christ reveals Himself to whom ever He wants, no amount of banter will ever change that.

    November 18, 2012 at 9:01 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Truth Life, you are really confused.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:02 pm |
    • Be honest

      very delusional. Do you ever read what you write? Apply common sense and logic to it?

      November 18, 2012 at 9:02 pm |
    • Gadflie

      Internet rule number 124, if someone has the word "Truth" in the name they use, they wouldn't know actual truth if it bit them on the keister.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:03 pm |
    • Doomed

      Very true. But atheists are afraid of Jesus what's why they're spreading all those lies about him.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:03 pm |
    • Attack of the 50 Foot Magical Underwear

      And LSD will make you see things as well. So should I worship LSD?

      Seriously, folks – it would appear that the average IQ of the average believe is about 64 – simply staggeringly frightening.

      Try using your brains!!!!!!!!

      November 18, 2012 at 9:05 pm |
    • Doomed

      @Be Honest

      Who's delusional here? We believers are believing in God and are not looking for proof of his existence. But you atheists on the other hands don't believe in him and you have Foundations who are spending millions of dollars in supernatural research es and trying to prove God doesn't exist. Now tell me who's delusional?

      November 18, 2012 at 9:08 pm |
    • Attack of the 50 Foot Magical Underwear

      @ doomed – do you comprehend that is as silly as saying that people who don't believe in the Easter Bunny are afraid of the Easter Bunny? Come on – you have to do far, far better than that. Didn't your god provide you with cogent arguments?

      November 18, 2012 at 9:10 pm |
    • Gadflie

      Doomed, really? Please name some of those foundations.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:11 pm |
    • Barb

      "Doomed", you are delusional. Now go be a good (albeit stupid) little boy and go google "Russell's Teapot". Read the results carefully. Don't come back until you understand the concept.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:15 pm |
  11. Doomed

    It's funny to see atheists laughing at religious people on these boards. Atheists thinks that the whole world is f..ed up but them. We have a good case of mental problems on their part don't we?

    November 18, 2012 at 9:00 pm |
    • Attack of the 50 Foot Magical Underwear

      Doomed- let me guess – dropped out of grade 6?

      November 18, 2012 at 9:06 pm |
    • Doomed

      Not at all, i graduated and i'm a successful business man. I just find it odd that most of you don't even have a job and are still being supported by your parents. I know atheists more than you think, i've hired some but none of them kept their job. They were lazy and not very productive. I'm very well placed to tell you that much.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:12 pm |
    • Attack of the 50 Foot Magical Underwear

      oh, doomed -you are a strange, sad little person, aren't you. Please – tell me about me. What's my story?

      November 18, 2012 at 9:14 pm |
    • Doomed

      I don't have much to say other than you are an atheist and i have seen many like you before. I know exactly what kind of people you are. Have you spent money on helping others, i bet you didn't. Well i have helped kids who we're in the atheists world of drugs and h o m o s ex u a l i t y to get out of there. Today some are working and others are successful and are living a better quality of life. You know nothing about atheist, you think you do but you don't. You're simply an atheist because you had friends around you who pulled you in. Don't start to teach me what atheism is all about. I have seen it's in and out of it many times.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:21 pm |
    • Gadflie

      Doom, even you should realize that the living conditions and education level of the people online here are nothing but your imagination talking. AKA, wishful thinking, like your career.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:22 pm |
    • Gadflie

      It's amusing to see Doomed pretending that he is someone worthwhile. Good rule of thumb is if someone brags about their outside life while posting online, they are lying.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:25 pm |
    • Doomed

      There is nothing i can do to make you believe me, but let me tell you that my daughter is a doctor and you just can't imagine how many young people lives which have been ruined by doctrines like atheism. Some of them are in their 20's and their 30's. Their life was ruined because they were drug addicts and were living a very active s e x u a l life. Do i need to tell you that most of them were atheists? Make your own research, go make a visit to your local hospital and talk to doctors and nurses about this and then you can come back telling me if i was right or wrong. You're an avid atheist and you will discard everything i tell you, until the day come were you will remember what i told you tonight. That's all i can do for you, the rest of it you will have to work it out yourself.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:32 pm |
    • Attack of the 50 Foot Magical Underwear

      Wow, doomed – that was pathetic. Not surprising. Just pathetic. How about this: Post graduate degree; professional; married with 2 very successful (meaning very well-balanced, empathetic, compassionate) kids, work with those less fortunate ie addictions, Mental health issues, in trouble with the law, creative side includes novels, short stories and screenplays. Now, as for my atheism, that would have been my brain that lead me there. probably before I was 10. Anti-authoritarian. Like to think for myself. Don;t like being fed lines of BS, and learned to recognize it at a very early age.

      How's that for a start?

      November 18, 2012 at 9:41 pm |
    • Gadflie

      Doomed, sorry kid, you are unconvincing. You need to work on your lies. According the the General Social Survey in 2003, believer drug users outnumber atheist drug users by more than 10-1.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:41 pm |
    • Attack of the 50 Foot Magical Underwear

      Doomed – you sound like a scared child. Atheism does not cause drug addiction, nor does to lead to promiscuity. If you were a half-a-ssed parent, you would understand that. Try poverty, for one. Try bad parenting, for another. But atheism? Pathetic.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:45 pm |
    • Doomed

      Listen up kids, i am old enough to be your father and probably your grand father. You won't change my mind toward atheists, and i am what i said i was, i know you would have wanted me to lie to you so you can have your atheist pride. Sorry i am not an atheist and i don't spread lies. Yes i have helped lest fortunate people and i will continue to do so. I feel it is my job to take part of helping my community. Unlike you atheists not everybody are lazy and still be supported by their parents. I know what i saw and i know what your h o m o s e x u a l lifestyle can leads people to. Atheists the truth is you're all big mouth and i know you, i have dealt with employees like you before. You don't impress me at all. Like i always said, go find a job and a real life, and please be productive for yourselves and for others around you. Stop spending half of your life behind a computer insulting people. You don't have to believe me, but not everyone on this comment board still live in their parents basement.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:57 pm |
    • Attack of the 50 Foot Magical Underwear

      Doomed- you keep bringing up ho-mo – s-exuality – repeatedly! And no one but you is making it an issue. A serious question – are you closeted? I'm not being judgmental, but there are a lot of religious folks who are actually g-ay who don't know how to deal with their own s-exual orientation because it conflicts with their religious upbringing. If that's the case, seek counseling. If that's not that case, and you simply view being g-ay as a sin, seek counseling. And consider – your Jesus hung out with 12 other guys. Think about it.

      November 18, 2012 at 10:07 pm |
  12. darth vader

    I have seen the length to which an atheist could go just to bad mouth a person .

    November 18, 2012 at 9:00 pm |
    • Attack of the 50 Foot Magical Underwear

      ooh – and what length would that be? The length where the atheist says, please provide cogent proof of your god? And the believer spouts bible verses? And the atheist again asks for proof? And the believer insults?

      November 18, 2012 at 9:08 pm |
    • Doomed

      If you add to them being lazy people and also being arrogant then you have the right formula of an atheists.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:15 pm |
    • Attack of the 50 Foot Magical Underwear

      Seriously, doomed – are you still in high school? With comments like that: you're lazy???? really – is that the best you can muster? Sad.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:47 pm |
    • Dippy

      And his writing ability is eighth grade at best.

      November 19, 2012 at 12:24 am |
  13. ThinkDefyUnite

    "Science flies you to the moon. Religion flies you into buildings."

    In fact, ”atheism” is a term that should not even exist. No one ever needs to identify himself as a “non-astrologer” or a “non-alchemist.” We do not have words for people who doubt that Elvis is still alive or that aliens have traversed the galaxy only to molest ranchers and their cattle. Atheism is nothing more than the noises reasonable people make in the presence of unjustified religious beliefs.

    November 18, 2012 at 8:56 pm |
    • Be honest

      When ask, I tell others I'm not an atheist, I'm a Realist.

      November 18, 2012 at 8:58 pm |
    • DUMP HINDU ATHEISM, SELF CENTER ISM AND BE A TRUE AMERICAN IN FOLLOWING OF TRUTH ABSOLUTE GOD

      Science is dependent on constant to find constant of a matter, if their is no constant, truth absolute, nothing is in existence, SO TRUTH ABSOLUTE IS GOD AND LORD OF THE WORLD, NONE OTHER.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:00 pm |
    • Be honest

      hey Dump,, logic wasn't one of you favorite subjects, huh?

      November 18, 2012 at 9:03 pm |
    • Jason

      The fool in his heart says 'there is no God'.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:03 pm |
    • ThinkDefyUnite

      @Jason: The wise man in his mind says "There is no god".

      November 18, 2012 at 9:10 pm |
  14. feraku

    The Bible is not for Christians!!!!

    November 18, 2012 at 8:56 pm |
    • DUMP HINDU ATHEISM, SELF CENTER ISM AND BE A TRUE AMERICAN IN FOLLOWING OF TRUTH ABSOLUTE GOD

      Yes, for hindu's, ignorant.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:01 pm |
  15. darth vader

    ssooooo it's ok to hate christianty any ol' time so long as you dont hate the atheist hmmmmm

    November 18, 2012 at 8:55 pm |
    • midwest rail

      If you derived that from the article, you have serious reading comprehension problems.

      November 18, 2012 at 8:57 pm |
    • Be honest

      christianity is child abuse. It destroys childrens spirit.

      November 18, 2012 at 8:59 pm |
  16. Get Real

    The real truth is that

    Man created god in his own image

    Male
    Mean
    Spiteful
    Jealous
    Etc.

    Only difference is that some people are actually quite good, unlike the mean monster the god of Abraham!

    November 18, 2012 at 8:51 pm |
    • Be honest

      agreed Get Real, well said

      November 18, 2012 at 8:55 pm |
  17. Wisdom4U2

    I like this editor... It takes a woman to bring some wisdom to the 'inspired' word of God. You go, girl. :-) And God bless.

    November 18, 2012 at 8:49 pm |
    • Sue

      It takes a woman to tell what the Bible really says about women, you mean? What do men like Joel Osteen, Billy Graham, or Ted Haggard know about being a woman?

      November 18, 2012 at 8:54 pm |
  18. Jason

    Jesus is real. I have seen Him in person and spoken to Him. Since He is real, His infallible word is also true. When a Christian says that something is biblical, they are referring to the New Testament. Jesus and His apostles gave us the New Testament, and the writings of Paul in the New Testament tell us what God wants and expects from His people. The New Testament is not written for unbelievers. By contrast, the old Testament is God dealing with His people Israel and what He expected from them as He shaped and molded them in a separate people through whom the promised Messiah would come. From the Old and New Testaments, we get a good idea of what God wants from His people. We also know that if you are not among His people, you are going to hell and you can do what you want until you get there, since by sinning you have killed your consciences which would have led you to Him and righteousness. As for having multiple wives in the old testament, we can see that that was not true of all the Patriarchs, but only Jacob and the Kings of the nation of Israel. And, we see where that led. Thus, we can see it is not God's ideal, but the New Testament also says that God let those things happen, because He was after all, dealing with men He was using, where they were at in their lives and culture, again to bring about His people Israel. But, in the New Testament, Paul writes clearly that leaders in the Chruch are to be the husband of one wife, which again, clearly tells us, what God wants. Also, God made Adam and Eve, not Adam and multiple wives. So, you can see what God's active will is for each man from scripture. It is self delusion to say the things Stewart said. Study of scripture gives us precisely what God wants from man.

    November 18, 2012 at 8:48 pm |
    • Gadflie

      Kid, either you hallucinated or you met one of my gardeners.

      November 18, 2012 at 8:50 pm |
    • Be honest

      too bad jesus isn't here today, we could teach him a thing or two about being good.

      November 18, 2012 at 8:51 pm |
    • Attack of the 50 Foot Magical Underwear

      Okayyyyyy . . . . .

      You know, Jason, and with the greatest respect, you sound completely delusional. Seriously – get some Mental health assistance – Now!

      November 18, 2012 at 8:51 pm |
    • DUMP HINDU ATHEISM, SELF CENTER ISM AND BE A TRUE AMERICAN IN FOLLOWING OF TRUTH ABSOLUTE GOD

      Ya, you saw, hindu fabrication Jesus, just like hindu pagan Paul, while high on pot of hindu sanatan, filthy goon, pretending to be, what he never was, follower of son of blessed Mary.

      November 18, 2012 at 8:52 pm |
    • Get Real

      The imaginary Satan shall delay your imaginary god with logic and reason!

      November 18, 2012 at 8:54 pm |
    • joan

      t am sorry you believe such an illogical theosophy. but as long as you do not push it on others, I applaud your freedom to believe it.

      November 18, 2012 at 8:54 pm |
    • darth vader

      thank you sir

      November 18, 2012 at 8:56 pm |
    • Get Real

      Oops. I meant Slay not delay the god of Abraham

      November 18, 2012 at 8:56 pm |
    • darth vader

      thank you

      November 18, 2012 at 8:57 pm |
    • Trill Troll

      just cuz some Mexican fvcked you in the butt, doesn't mean god is real.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:03 pm |
    • PRISM 1234

      Great post, Jason. Yes, you are right, this author is in self decision. I believe she has, like Esau, sold out her birthright for the bowl of porridge.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:04 pm |
    • PRISM 1234

      M-T-S "this author is in self delusion"

      November 18, 2012 at 9:06 pm |
    • I wonder

      Jason,

      Are you the same guy who was on here a while back, who fell 30 feet and landed on his head?

      November 18, 2012 at 9:52 pm |
  19. Yessy

    I agree that at times people will pick and choose what they want from the bible to support something they believe in. Although, I find that the best way to follow the law of the Bible is to interpret it in context as well as the spirit of what the word is trying to convey. There are certain things in the bile that are said straight and transcend the times. It is dangerous to discount the truth of the bible because then you stand the risk of ascending into Liberal Theology that gives no justice to God and what he meant to convey.

    November 18, 2012 at 8:48 pm |
    • Sue

      Abolition was once called "Liberal Theology", you do know that, don't you?

      November 18, 2012 at 8:56 pm |
  20. Apple Bush

    Carlnelus Delaney Simmons, age 37, reportedly took her 16 month old son, Jabraylon Bables, and dipped him into a pot of boiling water. According to The Dallas Morning News, the baby suffered for 36 days before succumbing to his grotesque and brutal injuries. He was presumably in agonizing pain, as his burns covered most of his lower body and melted the skin off his body and of which subsequently became infected.

    Where is your God now?

    November 18, 2012 at 8:46 pm |
    • Doomed

      You are so immature, you should know better. If you really want some answers just go ask prisoners who are atheists that same question about their horrible crimes.

      November 18, 2012 at 8:48 pm |
    • Trill Troll

      Black ppl, right?

      November 18, 2012 at 8:49 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      @Doomed

      So the decidedly Christian prison population will explain to me why God hates children?

      November 18, 2012 at 8:51 pm |
    • Be honest

      most prisoners who created violent crimes in the USA are christians..

      November 18, 2012 at 8:52 pm |
    • Attack of the 50 Foot Magical Underwear

      @ Doomed – the prison population in the US is overwhelmingly Christian – much more so than the "outside " population. Atheists make up a very, very small percentage of prison populations. Why? Umm – because they are not crazy, delusional nutbars????

      November 18, 2012 at 8:54 pm |
    • Doomed

      False, every prison out there are filled with atheists.

      November 18, 2012 at 8:56 pm |
    • Akira

      ....Ganbangers regularly hold prayer meetings before they go forth and commit their heinous crimes....so what am I to takeaway from THAT??

      November 18, 2012 at 9:00 pm |
    • Be honest

      wow doomed, you are delusional. Christians commit more murders than any other group in the USA

      November 18, 2012 at 9:01 pm |
    • Doomed

      Oh stop that, you know that's not true. You atheists are well known to spread lies and deceive people.

      November 18, 2012 at 9:02 pm |
    • Permission to Doubt

      @Apple Bush
      I agree with you that such an act is tragic in the deepest sense of the term, but the fact that this act draws out in you a sense of moral outrage begs to be reckoned with. Is this a tragic act because it upsets you or are you saying there are moral absolutes that exist that we are accountable to? If there are moral absolutes that exist outside of ourselves where did these originate from? (Interesting that this moral compass compels most of us to agree that this act is in fact tragic)

      I'm wondering if your conclusion that a good God doesn't exist because there are people who commit evil actions like you mentioned is a sound one. Let's take that argument a little closer to home and see if it holds true:

      Do we who live in America have laws that govern how we should live?
      Do people break these laws at times?
      Does this lead us to conclude that there is no such thing as congress?

      Do you have a mom and dad who made rules for you?
      Did you ever disobey your mom and dad?
      Should we now conclude that a good mom and dad do not exist because you acted in ways that disobeyed them?

      Concluding that there is no such thing as a good God because evil exists may seem plausible at first glance, but there may be more to the story.

      -Permission to Doubt

      November 18, 2012 at 9:28 pm |
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About this blog

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