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Pat Robertson challenges creationism
Pat Robertson: "There was a time when these giant reptiles were on the Earth, and it was before the time of the Bible."
November 29th, 2012
04:04 PM ET

Pat Robertson challenges creationism

By Dan Merica, CNN

Washington (CNN) – Televangelist Pat Robertson challenged the idea that Earth is 6,000 years old this week, saying the man who many credit with conceiving the idea, former Archbishop of Ireland James Ussher, “wasn’t inspired by the Lord when he said that it all took 6,000 years.”

The statement was in response to a question Robertson fielded Tuesday from a viewer on his Christian Broadcasting Network show "The 700 Club.” In a submitted question, the viewer wrote that one of her biggest fears was that her children and husband would not go to heaven “because they question why the Bible could not explain the existence of dinosaurs.”

“You go back in time, you've got radiocarbon dating. You got all these things, and you've got the carcasses of dinosaurs frozen in time out in the Dakotas,” Robertson said. “They're out there. So, there was a time when these giant reptiles were on the Earth, and it was before the time of the Bible. So, don't try and cover it up and make like everything was 6,000 years. That's not the Bible.”

Before answering the question, Robertson acknowledged the statement was controversial by saying, “I know that people will probably try to lynch me when I say this.”

“If you fight science, you are going to lose your children, and I believe in telling them the way it was,” Robertson concluded.

Forty-six percent of Americans believe that God created humans in their present form at one point within the past 10,000 years, according to a survey released by Gallup in June. That number has remained unchanged for the past 30 years, since 1982, when Gallup first asked the question on creationism versus evolution.

The Gallup poll has not specifically asked about views on the age of the Earth.

Ussher’s work, from the mid-1600s, is widely cited by creationists as evidence that Earth is only a few thousand years old. Answer in Genesis, the famed Christian creationist ministry behind the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Kentucky, cites Ussher as proof of Earth’s age. They describe the archbishop as “a brilliant scholar who had very good reasons for his conclusions concerning the date of creation.”

For Christians who read the creation account in Genesis literally, the six days in the account are strictly 24-hour periods and leave no room for evolution. Young Earth creationists use this construct and biblical genealogies to determine the age of the Earth, and typically come up with 6,000 to 10,000 years.

Most scientists, however, agree that the Earth is 4.5 billion years old and the universe is 14.5 billion years old.

The idea of creationism has been scorned by the mainstream scientific community since shortly after Charles Darwin introduced "The Origin of Species" in 1859. By 1880, The American Naturalists, a science journal, reported nearly every major university in America was teaching evolution.

The question about Earth’s age has been in the news recently. Earlier this month, Republican Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida attempted to walk the line between science and faith-based creationism in remarks that that provoked the ire of liberal blogs and left the door open to creationism.

“I'm not a scientist, man,” Rubio told GQ’s Micheal Hainey. “I can tell you what recorded history says, I can tell you what the Bible says, but I think that's a dispute amongst theologians and I think it has nothing to do with the gross domestic product or economic growth of the United States.”

– CNN’s Eric Marrapodi contributed to this report.

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Christianity • Creationism • Evolution

soundoff (4,408 Responses)
  1. CP in FL

    Religion is the oldest and biggest scam. Churches take people's money and tell them that the magic sky daddy will take good care of them. Where is the evidence of god? I will give you a hint, there isn't any. People, stop wasting time praying and start doing something to help yourself of your neighbor. All praying does is waste time.

    November 30, 2012 at 1:02 pm |
    • tl;dr

      now sir i am not saying you are right or wrong, you asked for evedence of god, can for sure prove there is no god??? people dont think the same, some need faith in something to make it day to day. you say praying waste time, can you prove this? people make rash decisions and say that people who belive in god are wrong and that there is no god, well to them you are wrong that you belive there is no god.

      how about you belive in what you want to belive in, god or no god, and stop pushing your beleifs on others.

      and in turn i might say, athiest say there is no go. so in a way they have faith that there is no god. so athiesm is a religion

      November 30, 2012 at 1:22 pm |
    • John A

      Is that the excuse you give for not living a moral lifestyle? Go out and help people, donate money to charity (of your choosing), deny your selfish nature and serve and help people. Stop taking advantage of other people. If your married, be grateful and faithful to your spouse. Stop making excuses.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
    • sam stone

      atheists generally don't say for certain there is no god. rather,they say that they do not see a reason to believe in one. try to get your argument straight

      November 30, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
    • sam stone

      can you prove for certain there are no leprechauns?

      November 30, 2012 at 2:07 pm |
  2. Preston

    Man and Dinosaurs inhabited Earth together; Biblical scripture describes this. See the verses at the end of the Book of Job (the second oldest book of the Bible with the exception of the first few chapters of Genesis) for reference. Psalms and several other books in canonical scripture mention Leviathan and other great land beasts. A Christian understands that following the 6 days of creation and 7th day of rest, all was "very good" to God; meaning all creation was perfect and life was everlasting for man (until Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden). Dinosaurs could not have pre-existed and become extincted/evolved following the creation of man and everything being "very good."

    November 30, 2012 at 1:01 pm |
    • Tanker

      Humans, Elves and Dwarves lived together.

      Just read The Hobbit, its all in there...

      November 30, 2012 at 1:03 pm |
    • Sue

      Proof or retract, please.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:06 pm |
    • Baby Jesus doesn't smile.

      Preston
      Mary dropped me on my head a few times also, I'll show you the bumps when you come up to heaven

      November 30, 2012 at 1:07 pm |
    • == o ==

      Wow. So you were home-schooled by Carrie's mama?

      November 30, 2012 at 1:09 pm |
    • Preston

      Proof for?

      November 30, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
    • Preston

      Actually, I'm an Engineer with a master's degree. I have a deep love for science, math and physics.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:12 pm |
    • == o ==

      I would say proof for anything you belched.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:13 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @Preston

      The Bible, I find, is always a great resource for scientific understanding. I've been to the "creationist/ism museum" too. Love how the blonde hair blue eyes are running around with T-Rex, on our 6k year old Earth.

      Good grief.

      Peace...

      November 30, 2012 at 1:14 pm |
    • Preston

      Sure. See Job 40:15-24 for the dinosaur description. Job 41(the whole chapter describes Leviathan). Genesis 1:31 for "very good." Other biblical references for Leviathan: Psalms 74:14, Psalms 104:26, Isaiah 27:1. I believe this universe was intelligently designed and I see it in mathematical and scientific analysis. The process of evolution breaks the very laws of thermodynamics.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
    • max

      Coo-Coo-Cachu....

      November 30, 2012 at 1:45 pm |
    • Hail No

      Preston,

      You like the Book of Job for science facts? See Job 38 for the nifty fact about hail and snow being kept in storehouses in the sky, for "God" to cast down upon Earth when the whim strikes him... then go look up how snow and hail are really formed.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:53 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      Preston, If you have a deep love for physics, one presumes that you understand it. The observable universe alone if proof that the universe and earth are more than 6000 years old.
      Can you explain what mathematical and scientific analysis leads you believe that the universe was intelligently designed and how the process of evolution breaks the very laws of thermodynamics.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:17 pm |
  3. AJR

    If there truly is a God......wouldn't he have to be an ego-maniacal narcissist? "Your entire life should be devoted to the worship of me. And if you do not worship me, I will destroy you and your culture on earth and will punish you for eternity." Wow.

    When people say that a hurricane/earthquake/tsunami, etc., was sent by God to punish a culture, how is that any different from people believing that the erruption of a valcano signified an angry pagon God who then required a sacrifice?

    November 30, 2012 at 1:00 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Depends on the god.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:01 pm |
    • mudbone9

      The only thing asking you to worship God is other human beings. That is unless you can hear God talk in which this is the end of this conversation.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:19 pm |
    • LET THE TRUTH BE KNOWN

      TOWER OF BABEL

      November 30, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
  4. Bregsman

    Hmm, did the evangelical right learn a lesson from the last election? That lesson may be that you can't win an election with only 46% of a population? That you need rational thinking people as part of your electorate? Ahh, thank God! Though, I don't doubt that creationism will once again sneak back into their philosophy once they get their numbers up again. Fight the power!

    November 30, 2012 at 12:57 pm |
  5. James

    As he gets closer to death, he is realizing there is nothing more after this.

    November 30, 2012 at 12:56 pm |
    • John A

      ....if you don't believe in God.

      November 30, 2012 at 5:22 pm |
  6. mudbone9

    I never did understand why people fight over the concept of creationism or evolution. Why does it have to be so black and white? Why can't both be right? Why couldn't there be a higher being that created all of this. Do people really think that God is restricted by time like we are by gravity? Isn't it possible that time is an invention of God like all the other laws in the universe? Maybe evolution is part of Gods grand design for creation. All of this could be happening at the same moment to God instead of over billions of years. Of course the word "moment" is a segment of time so what would it be to God?

    November 30, 2012 at 12:56 pm |
    • snowboarder

      mud – i think it is much more likely that god or gods are simply the invention of primitive men and the stories nothing more than myth and fable.

      November 30, 2012 at 12:59 pm |
    • Tanker

      Because, as a species, we want to KNOW, and one of the fundamental questions is "how we got here."

      Also, the concept of god is often used to make believers superior and non-beleivers inferior.

      What if there was no god, at all?

      Some people don't like hard questions, and would rather believe than think.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:00 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @mudbone9

      Well, given that every scenario from you, *presupposes* already the existence of a God... I would find it a bit difficult to have a conversation with you unless you also are able to include scenario's without a God.

      Peace...

      November 30, 2012 at 1:02 pm |
    • mudbone9

      I don't go to church, I rarely pray but I don't know how any thinking human being can say that all of this came from nothing. I respect that an atheist has the right to believe what they want but I don't understand how anyone can deny that something created all of this. As Spock would say "It's Logical".

      November 30, 2012 at 1:06 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @mudbone9

      You might want to study up on some of Steven Hawking's works. No one is literally saying that something came from "nothing."

      Peace...

      November 30, 2012 at 1:16 pm |
    • snowboarder

      mud – you simply believe that because it is what you were taught and most people rarely are challenged to critically think about their religious beliefs. religion is perched upon an unearned pedestal.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:18 pm |
    • mudbone9

      Not sure where you are going with that but why do you think believing in a higher being and religion are the same thing? A person can believe in a god without being religious. I actually despise organized religion. It's just an invention of man to control minds. I can think for myself and come to my own conclusions just like you apparently have.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
    • mudbone9

      Oh and Steven Hawking's might be science smart but he has no idea if a higher being exists or not. Last I heard science can't prove that a god does not exist nor can it prove one does exist. I just have an extremely hard time understanding how something can come from absolutely nothing.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:35 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @mudbone9

      You stated that you couldn't understand how any thinking person couldn't think that their is a God, etc...(approx.)

      I am not arguing for or against the existence of a God, but merely stating that there are possibilities that there is 'no' God.

      Again, it's not about "understanding how something can come from absolutely nothing" ... the scientist's are not suggesting that. I suggest reading Hawking's work to at least "try" and understand something outside your world-view.

      Peace...

      November 30, 2012 at 1:43 pm |
  7. Christianity is a form of mental illness- FACT

    to believe in christ is to be of an unsound mond

    November 30, 2012 at 12:56 pm |
    • Ludwig

      What exactly is a mond? If you're going to criticize something, please learn how to spell first

      November 30, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
    • pugh7755

      Not believing in Christ makes you mentally ill to the point you can't spell "mind"! MOND?

      November 30, 2012 at 1:06 pm |
    • Christianity is a form of mental illness- FACT

      typo for the mentally ill christians

      November 30, 2012 at 1:25 pm |
  8. bigguydon

    Genesys actually contains two creation stories that don't even fit together. I don't understand how Christians who read the bible "literally" can say it's factually accurate. It's just not, nor did the men who wrote it intend it to be. Fighting over whether it's "factual" and attempting to cover our heads in the sand about the facts in front of our face diminishes the value of the story being told ignores Jesus teaching entirely. Besides, the Big Bang is a far more incredible feat of creation than merely one planet, and Scientists still don't have an answer for how singularity suddenly exploded to make the universe; there is plenty of room for God in the creation of the universe.

    November 30, 2012 at 12:55 pm |
    • was blind, but now I see

      Look up the Gap Theory.There are thousands, if not millions, of years between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2. !:2 actually begins our current earth age. 1:1 is about the previous age (when satan fell among other things).

      November 30, 2012 at 1:03 pm |
    • max

      The only people who think the Bible is factually accurate are those who have zero knowledge of the science behind Evolution. And many of them do this intentionally. They avoid science because the don't want their belief structure altered. They are happy being ignorant.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:03 pm |
    • Bregsman

      I agree. Math and science prove God's existence better than the bible ever could. Look at the strong and weak nuclear forces... If they were even off the tinies bit, stars would not hold together (the strong force) and they would not super-nova (the weak force). Without either of these events, the universe does not exist. Isn't it more impressive that God could create an infinite universe from a singularity than create earth in 6 days? Allow God to be impressive, but not invasive :)

      November 30, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
    • snowboarder

      bregs – spinoza's god is perfectly reasonable, but the christian god is absurd.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:21 pm |
  9. Choir Loft

    THE BIBLE isn't about dinosaurs, or tectonic plate movement or even about dogs and cats. It's about the redemption of man and God's intervention in history and lives. The current process has been on going for 6k years. The Bible is not and does not pretend to be an encyclopedia.

    If you want a book of general knowledge look for an encyclopedia.
    If you want a book about T-Rex, the go to the library.
    If you want a book about geology there are lots of good ones.
    If you want a book about the fall of man and God's work to redeem the mess we're in, then the Bible is the place to go.

    but that's just me, hollering from the choir loft...

    November 30, 2012 at 12:54 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @Choir Loft

      And... if you want a book on a certain mythology...

      Peace...

      November 30, 2012 at 12:59 pm |
    • snowboarder

      loft – "the fall of man"

      they have to convince you that you are broken so they can sell you the cure.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:01 pm |
    • Tanker

      Nice try to talk religon out of the hole.

      Didn't work, but nice try...

      November 30, 2012 at 1:02 pm |
    • Russell's Teapot

      Lol! Any respectable geology book will tell you the earth has been going thru its 'process' for far longer than 6k years

      November 30, 2012 at 1:03 pm |
  10. Sylar

    Here is the 100% fact. Human beings just don't know how we got here or why. Anyone who says they know is crazy. Religion was a way to explain it thousands of years ago (or hundreds depending on your denomination). Religion might have it right, it might not. I'm guessing neither is right and we just don't have the mental capacity to really figure it out for sure. We might never know for sure so move on with your life.

    November 30, 2012 at 12:54 pm |
    • mb2010a

      That is the beauty of religion...or no religion. You have to die to find out the truth...

      November 30, 2012 at 1:02 pm |
  11. Rob

    I'm a believing Christian but anyone who listens to Pat Robertson, or reads his books, may very well be high on crack. He's an old buffoon who should have retired years ago, they should lock him away over in Virginia, for good....

    November 30, 2012 at 12:54 pm |
    • mb2010a

      He and John McCain are very much alike...

      November 30, 2012 at 1:04 pm |
    • Tony

      Actually he is being sensible for a change in this article. I am surprised.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:12 pm |
  12. lionlylamb

    The Universally-Formed Cosmos of Triune Manifestation

    We all live amid two chasms of cosmological orders. We have the inner-cosmos and the outer-cosmos. The inner-cosmos is atomically made and is the universal construct of the outer-cosmos. One could not have an outer without an inner. Both are synonymously of the same natures. It stands to reason the inner-cosmos was made first and the outer-cosmos came into being only after the passive finalization of the inner-cosmos was made near complete. The inner-cosmos is transcendent and fixed while the outer-cosmos is ascendant and malleable in their dualities natures.

    The third cosmos is of life itself made from the inner-cosmos living upon the terrestrial faces of the celestial outer-cosmos. This third cosmos is the celled cosmos or the cellular cosmologic orders of all life forms made anywhere cellular life can gain a foothold to evolve and gain in the abundant natures toward the evolution of its structures ever evolving. Without the two main Cosmos coming into existence; living cellular cosmologies could not exist.

    The trinity or threefold nature of chasm cosmologies is being one of the greatest and grandest gestures ever to have been formulated! To say God had nothing to do with such a feat of cosmologic inter-dependencies seems an infallible congruency inconsistent for one to say or think otherwise. To say the nature of God is to keep inflating the physical elements of the outer cosmos while deflating the essence needs for the inner-cosmos leaves one to wonder about the third cosmological construct’s real nature for having been created. Why then is there cellular cosmos of living cosmologies and when did such life become established?

    The history of multifaceted cosmological expansionism within celestial symmetries comes from the terrestrial complacencies of planetary regularities and solarized objectivism wherever the abundance of inner cosmologies coalesces to form stars, planets and moons among many other fragmented structures within the spatial confines of a universally formed Cosmos.

    Life, upon the celestial shorelines of the terrestrially compliant are as a biologic ‘cellularistic’ cosmological constant, and were ever formed and are continually forming seemingly unto forever as well placed living conglomerations in naturalisms arcades of wondrous cavalcades marching in steps of melancholy tributes to God upon the most high cosmos of universalism’s formidable formations on the highest of unimaginable grounds!

    November 30, 2012 at 12:54 pm |
    • JustRight

      Ha ha i love this post. It reminds me of a middle school writer who just discovered the thesaurus – long lines of strung together "big" words with nothing to say

      November 30, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      JustRight,

      Being stupid and dumb is what short winded words thusly declare many to so be.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:08 pm |
    • JustRight

      Thats absolutely incorrect – theres a reason scholarly papers arent written the way you write – intelligence is shown in thoughts not big words or strange sentence structure

      November 30, 2012 at 1:16 pm |
  13. therealpeace2all

    @Mark

    You Said: " Robertson is NOT challenging creationism, he is simply stating that the process of creation may not have been as simple as the literal Genesis account. "

    What would Robertson 'actually' "know" about how the process of creation started anyway ?

    You Said: " Personally, I believe God created the universe but I have no idea how he did it or how long it took"

    Operative word... "believe"

    You Said: " and neither do evolutionists. It takes as much faith to be an evolutionist as it oes to be a creationist. "

    Hmm... well, certainly as we get even more detailed information from science, we are getting a much clearer picture on things. And... no, i'm not saying that there is 'no' god, just saying that science 'is' giving us the best information...and... it will continue to fill in these 'gaps.'

    You Said: " It takes as much faith to be an evolutionist as it oes[sic} to be a creationist."

    No... not really.

    You Said: " As I tell my atheist friends, "We'll see."

    Interesting closing with a "Pascal's Wager" gambit.

    Peace...

    November 30, 2012 at 12:51 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @Mark

      Oops... sorry, see below to your posting.

      Peace...

      November 30, 2012 at 12:53 pm |
    • Tanker

      If there is a god (and I don't believe there is), I wonder how he/she would feel about people beleiving in him because its the safer bet....

      November 30, 2012 at 12:53 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @Tanker

      LOL ! :D

      Peace...

      November 30, 2012 at 12:56 pm |
  14. twpeck

    Hmmm...maybe he is thinking about another run for president and is going for the old earth creationist vote.

    November 30, 2012 at 12:50 pm |
  15. LordEarlGray

    THere is simply no Biblical account that makes sense if you take it literally. The Bible at its best is fable and myth meant to guide men and, let's face it, put together by early priests according to what they wanted people to believe. For instance, there is simply NO WAY an ark could hold two of every animal in creation. Or at least, unless you think in terms of modern gene mapping and storing. Then it would have been possible but we'd have to credit either an early undiscovered civilization vastly more advanced than us or possibly aliens but that's another tale.

    November 30, 2012 at 12:47 pm |
    • right4life

      NO WAY an ark could hold two of every animal in creation.

      Don't think, there had 2 of every species on the Ark, 2 African elephants 2 Asian elephants. The Bible says there were 2 of every kind. 2 horses, 2 rhinos, etc. The Ark was large 450' long 75' wide and 45' high, 3 stories. 100,000 square feet.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:13 pm |
  16. sumday

    The difference with religion and science is, science gets to change it’s mind or way of thinking every time they discover something new, but then bash religion as to never allow them to change their understanding of what was written. Fact is bible never ever says 24hr period, it says dark and light cycle. That is it. When I point this out scientist claim I’m trying to twist the bible to make it fit rather than growing in my understanding of it. My question to all is, why does science get a free pass every time they change their understanding of something when their knowledge increases, but I am not allowed to change my understanding of what is written as my knowledge increases?

    November 30, 2012 at 12:46 pm |
    • Sylar

      No the problem is religion never changes and says they were wrong.

      November 30, 2012 at 12:50 pm |
    • snowboarder

      sumday – a free pass? your kind of spin is fascinating. science evolves as new information is learned. that is its strength, not its weakness. religion never learns.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
  17. lol??

    You can't put science in the hands of men and expect miracles.

    November 30, 2012 at 12:45 pm |
    • ME II

      And apparently you can't put miracles in the hands of god(s) and expect... anything.

      November 30, 2012 at 12:47 pm |
  18. Blue

    Folks, here it is straight up, at the high level where it matters. I deal with matters in a hierarchy, starting in the majors and working my way logically down to the minors and details – whether religion, politics or otherwise, you're wise to stay on the majors and off the rhetoric, or Labor rhetoric.

    Here's the majors, so plan accordingly for your place in this life or the next: 1) there is not a single fossil to evidence mankind's evolution from some so-called earlier form – so you either believe in our Creator, or Aliens, or you choose not to decide, and that is still a choice. 2) while many uninformed pundits – again by their own choosing and lack of initiative – get confused by the thousands of religious faiths, understand the following: don't get bogged down by the thousands of off-shoots, of the three major (by followers) religions in the world, being Christianity, Judaism, and Islam, all three subcribe to the same core Abrahamic (Old Testament) beliefs. So don't get caught up in thousands... at the high level... 3, and they have the same core beliefs.

    November 30, 2012 at 12:39 pm |
    • OOO

      Blue,
      Based on 1), I think we can disregard everything you say.

      November 30, 2012 at 12:41 pm |
    • Blue

      P.S. 3 religions – same story regarding Who's responsible for you being here. I don't know of anyone that got hung up on the timing issue, I've known about dinosaurs since I was a wee kid 50 years ago, and never got hung up on the timing as described by the original scribes who provided the foundations leading to the 3 major religions from shared roots. So what?

      Plan accordingly.

      November 30, 2012 at 12:46 pm |
    • Tanker

      Blue, you can't lie a god into existance...

      November 30, 2012 at 12:49 pm |
    • Blue

      Have anything of substance to add? While cute to yourself, what is it that you would contest? No fossil demonstrating evolution? That our 3 major world religions are founded on the Abrahamic old testament, though many don't know that and get confused by the thousands of off-shoots from the same root? Come on, brainiac, what's your value-added point?

      November 30, 2012 at 12:49 pm |
    • fred

      wow Blue, genius! Not.........

      November 30, 2012 at 12:51 pm |
    • mb2010a

      Everything you said is BS and based on religion of one sort or another which automatically makes your argument moot and illogical. Sorry...you lose. Do you know that the Chinese have a written history that goes back 35,000 years?

      November 30, 2012 at 12:51 pm |
    • ME II

      @Blue,
      1)
      Australopithicus, Ho.mo Habilus, Ho.mo Erectus, etc.
      (http://humanorigins.si.edu/evidence/human-family-tree)

      2)
      There are nearly a billion Hindus and perhaps as many Buddhists.

      November 30, 2012 at 12:53 pm |
    • ME II

      @Blue,

      ... and in addition to fossils, there is plenty of evidence from biochemistry, like Cytochrome-C, biogeography like marsupials, and genetics like ERVs and Human Chromosome-2.

      November 30, 2012 at 12:56 pm |
    • Blue

      Fred, thanks for the contribution... :D
      MB, check your population demographic facts... the 3 major religions are by far the majority of people on this planet.
      ME, that's theory, there are no fossils to evidence... why is that?

      November 30, 2012 at 12:57 pm |
    • Russell's Teapot

      There are however fossils that indicate humans have gradually evolved into present form, with regards to aspects in physique, brain size etc. To believe that humans have always resembled modern day man is absurd.

      November 30, 2012 at 12:58 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Blue, Judaism isn't a major world religion – Hinduism and Buddhism are.

      November 30, 2012 at 12:59 pm |
    • Joel

      If you don't consider the 14 or so distinct, overlapping species of ape-like man (farther back looking more like ape and more recent species looking more human) that have existed over the last 6 million years as evidence, then you either have a poor understanding of the evidence or just a poor understanding of what the word 'evidence' means.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:02 pm |
    • Blue

      Again, the 2 majors... not a single fossil to back up an evolution theory... how is that? You buy that? Where are they? and unbeknownst to many, many... the three major religions holding the historic population majority on our world are all based on Abrahamic religion of the old testament. I know some get confused that there appear to be so many religions, "how can they all be right, and if one's wrong..." but the three major core religions of Christianity, Judaism, and Islam are all themselves based on Abrahamic beliefs.

      You can argue Orthodox or Lutheran or Muslim all you want, but the big picture is, these faiths have a common root.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:02 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Blue,

      Judiasm is NOT a 'major' religion – numerically speaking. It's not even in the top 10.

      Here are the numbers:

      01. Christianity: ............................................. 2.1 billion
      02. Islam: ...................................................... 1.5 billion
      03. Secular/Nonreligious/Agnostic/Atheist: .. 1.1 billion
      04. Hinduism: ................................................ 900 million
      05. Chinese traditional religion: ..................... 394 million
      06. Buddhism: ............................................... 376 million
      07. primal-indigenous: ................................... 300 million
      08. African Traditional & Diasporic: .............. 100 million
      09. Sikhism: .................................................... 23 million
      10. Juche: ...................................................... 19 million
      11. Spiritism: .................................................. 15 million
      12. Judaism: .................................................. 14 million
      13. Baha'i: ....................................................... 7 million
      14. Jainism: .................................................... 4.2 million
      15. Shinto: ...................................................... 4 million
      16. Cao Dai: .................................................... 4 million
      17. Zoroastrianism: ........................................ 2.6 million
      18. Tenrikyo: .................................................. 2 million
      19. Neo-Paganism: ........................................ 1 million
      20. Unitarian-Universalism: ............................ 800 thousand
      21. Rastafarianism: ........................................ 600 thousand
      22. Scientology: ............................................. 500 thousand

      http://www.adherents.com/Religions_By_Adherents.html

      If your argument is that the Abrahamic traditions are 'legitimized' by Abraham, then I'll argue that Buddhism and Hindusim are rooted in the same tradition. In any case, the traditions of Abraham are those of ancient Sumeria – where he was from.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:04 pm |
    • Blue

      LOL Joel, does Sasquatch count on that list of yours?

      November 30, 2012 at 1:04 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @Blue

      You Said: " the 3 major religions are by far the majority of people on this planet. "

      So what ? Seems to me to be a form of 'argumentum ad populum'

      Peace...

      November 30, 2012 at 1:04 pm |
    • YBP

      Blue, I'd suggest you read Robert Funk, Robert Price, John Dominic Crossan, Bart Ehrman, Richard Carrier, Amy-Jill Levine, John Loftus, Burton Mack, Marcus Borg and many others, as I have. Then perhaps you'll be able to come to a more informed opinion about religion, particularly Christianity.

      The reason that any religion exists today is that most adherents are completely unaware of history and ancient culture on an academic level. All of the elements of Christianity are derivative, including Jesus himself, an allegorical figure, who was being worshiped in various ways all over the ancient world at least a century before Caiaphas' and Pontius Pilate's joint tenure (26-36 CE) when the historical Jesus is believed to have lived. Yes, I went there. And jesus isn;t the only character in the gospel who's name is allegorical based on the role he/she plays. Simon, Judas, Mary, Jairus, Barabbas, Bartimaus. All symbolic characters.

      And do look into the concept of midrash, a form of writing in the ancient past by which existing folklore and hagiography is re-written as new fiction, using the same plot/story elements and a lot of the same words and phrases. The concept of midrash explains the entire gospel of Mark, including the Passion Narrative.

      I personally am no longer a Christian or a god-fearer of any kind, but with good reason. I read. Not hacks, but the very best Biblical Scholars published today.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:04 pm |
    • ME II

      @Blue,
      "...there are no fossils to evidence..."
      First, those fossils are evidence that support evolution.
      What, perhaps, you want to say is that the fossils don't "prove" evolution in the sense of an unbroken chain, which is correct, but science doesn't deal in "proof".

      Second, there are no fossils, at all, that contradict evolution.
      Why is that? As someone famous once said, I think, "Evolution is easy to disprove. Just show me a rabbit fossil in the pre-Cambrian."

      November 30, 2012 at 1:04 pm |
    • Blue

      @ GOP'er, you made my point for me, thanks. Of course, you can distinguish between billions and millions can't you?

      November 30, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
    • Chad

      @GOPer "traditions of Abraham are those of ancient Sumeria"
      @Chad "which traditions are you referring to?

      @ME II "Second, there are no fossils, at all, that contradict evolution"
      @Chad "to imprecise a statement to have any meaning whatsoever.

      1. common ancestry isnt an issue for Christianity.
      2. explanation of stasis and rapid change in the fossil record IS an issue for atheism.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:08 pm |
    • Blue

      Frankly, given the amount of time to pass to cause evolutionary progression in any species, we would see fossils to evidence that evolution for everything from house cats to people. We don't. We have genetic material that suggests associations, but we have zero physical (fossil) evidence of any species being around long enough to have made that climb from the genetic pool. Not only do we NOT have it for humans, but nor for ANY OTHER species. Neither birds, nor monkeys. There is nothing for any species that anyone can find that shows the steps of evolution taking place anywhere at any time... zero physical evidence. How can that be if evolution did take place?

      November 30, 2012 at 1:09 pm |
    • ME II

      @Blue,
      There are nearly 7 billion people in the world, of them ~3.6 are of the Abrahamic persuasion. How exactly is that a majority? Perhaps you mean a plurality?

      November 30, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
    • ME II

      Oops, that was incorrect, sorry.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
    • Sue

      Chad, evidence, or rather lack of it, is a central problem for Christianity. That and all the contradictions and idiocies in the bible.

      Christianity is merely myth. If you think otherwise, present your proof. Still waiting for that.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
    • Sue

      Blue, open up a biology textbook. All your claims are false, and very stale. There is a preponderance of evidence, from the fossil record, vestigial organs, DNA/RNA clues, and so on. You just need to drop your cowardly denial and do some reading.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:13 pm |
    • ME II

      @Chad,
      "1. common ancestry isnt an issue for Christianity."
      Congrats!

      "2. explanation of stasis and rapid change in the fossil record IS an issue for atheism."
      Atheism says nothing about evolution, why even bring it up?
      The modern theory of evolution has no problem with stasis and relatively rapid change in the fossil record.

      "to imprecise a statement to have any meaning whatsoever."
      Incorrect, one fossil that does not fit with evolution would effectively disprove the Theory of Evolution. None, out the millions discovered, contradict evolution.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:16 pm |
    • Russell's Teapot

      Blue, how do you figure that Judaism ranks among the top 3 in terms of followers? That argument alone makes you look a tad off...

      November 30, 2012 at 1:16 pm |
    • Blue

      With zero physical evidence of evolution taking place, that demonstrates it did not, and our shared religious core belief systems having consensus to origin of mankind, you're free to disassociate yourselves from their chronicles from that era if you choose – at least in the U.S. However, you still must ask yourselves how our species suddenly appeared, and I submit to you that you've been told from scholars through the eras back to the earliest recorded history of mankind on this planet, regardless of religious off-shoots, and that you're left with the two choices... believe in their chronicles, or believe in Aliens. The latter is only postponing the core source to another world.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:19 pm |
    • DCThompson

      The key to understanding what science says about all of this is simple. The Old Testament of Bible is a pre-scientific book that describes a code of moral behavior and tells the stories passed down in the oral history of the Tribes of Israel. Science is a process that depends on evidence. A hypothesis is proposed and tested. If there is evidence to support the hypothesis, the findings might be published for peer review. Over a period of many years when many different scientifically controlled studies confirm the same conclusions to be accurate, a hypothesis becomes a "theory". It is only a THEORY when the idea is supported by the preponderance of the scientific evidence. There is no scientific evidence to support creationism! There is no debate in the scientific community! This has nothing to do with people hating Christians. It has a lot to do with Christians denying science and hurting their credibility with their own kids and keeping this country from being a leader in the scientific world. Why do you think that so many of the breakthrough scientific discoveries are taking place in other countries where scientific research is supported by governments instead of being suppressed for political gain. Pat Robertson is right on this one. Teach your kids science or loose them. It is OK to have your faith, but wake up and figure out that ancient writings and 17th century texts might have a few inaccuracies. We live on a round earth that moves around the sun and we are a part of a solar system and on and on. We know that! It is science!

      November 30, 2012 at 1:21 pm |
    • Guy

      Sue
      You know by now that Chad demands proof of others but never provides proof himself. All his arguements end with a defence of his Judeo-Christian beliefs and faith that can't be proven.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
    • Blue

      Dude, look what we've done to this world in only 2,000 years. Being a nice pragmatic non-believer, do you REALLY think we've been here scrapping it up for millions of years evolving? Seriously? Get a clue.

      November 30, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Chad,

      do yourself a favor and go read up on Tablet 11 of the Epic of Gilgamesh. Let me know if you see any similarities with the big book of smiting. No it's not the same, but it is intrigingly similar.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gilgamesh_flood_myth

      Then go read up on Hammurabi. While I believe he comes after Abraham left Ur, I think we can assume that the Sumerian laws enshrined in the engraved Code of Hammurabi predates Hammurabi himself.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hammurabi

      In the code of Hammurabi you will find the following:

      "An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth. If a man puts out the eye of another man, put his own eye out. If he knocks out another man's tooth, knock out his own tooth. If he breaks another man's bone, break his own bone."

      Sound familiar?

      Also this is very interesting:

      "In July, 2010, archaeologists reported that a fragmentary Akkadian cuneiform tablet was discovered at Tel Hazor, Israel, containing a ca. 1700 BC text that was said to be partly parallel to portions of the Hammurabi code."

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Code_of_Hammurabi

      November 30, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
    • ME II

      @Blue,
      "With zero physical evidence of evolution taking place, that demonstrates it did not,"
      Here are some highlights:
      Fossils, like Tiktaalik, Ambulocetus, Archeoptyrx, etc.
      Biochemistry like Cytochrome-C
      Biogeography like marsupials
      Genetics like ERVs, Human Chromosome-2, etc.
      Experiments like Lenski's long term e.coli experiment

      November 30, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Blue,

      Dude, look what we've done to this world in only 2,000 years.

      The key timeframe is not 2000 years ago but ~5,000 years ago. The inventions of agriculture, beer, writing and bronze tools in the fertile cresent were the inflexion point between prehistorical primitives and the cultures of antiquity.

      The Abrahamic traditions (beginning very roughly around 3,700 years ago) are derived from the ancient Mesopotamian cultures for a simple reason. Abraham came from there – specifically Ur.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
    • Chad

      @Chad "explanation of stasis and rapid change in the fossil record IS an issue for atheism."
      @ME II "Atheism says nothing about evolution, why even bring it up?"
      @Chad "so atheists have no problem with God orchestrating the development of organisms into the compexity that we see now?
      Congratulations!!!

      =========
      @ME II "The modern theory of evolution has no problem with stasis and relatively rapid change in the fossil record."
      @Chad "well... it can't be explained naturalistically (without external orchestration), but other than that you're correct :-) "

      =========
      @ME II "Incorrect, one fossil that does not fit with evolution would effectively disprove the Theory of Evolution. None, out the millions discovered, contradict evolution."
      @Chad "none disprove common ancestry, they ALL disprove naturalistic development.
      Until stasis and rapid change can be demonstrated to have occurred using some purely naturalistic mechanism, the requirement for external orchestration remains in the pool of explanatory options.

      November 30, 2012 at 2:28 pm |
    • Chad

      @GOPer "do yourself a favor and go read up on Tablet 11 of the Epic of Gilgamesh. Let me know if you see any similarities with the big book of smiting. No it's not the same, but it is intriguingly similar."
      @Chad "so, instead of arguing generalities, lets see if you can supply some of these intriguingly similar things, and then we'll apply some critical thinking to it.. :-)

      Remember, since there actually WAS a flood, it isnt of any surprise whatsoever that mythological creation stories would incorporate that reality.

      ======
      @GOPer "Then go read up on Hammurabi. While I believe he comes after Abraham left Ur, I think we can assume that the Sumerian laws enshrined in the engraved Code of Hammurabi predates Hammurabi himself."
      @Chad "so... you think that because the Abrahamic law wasnt the first one to view murder as wrong (for example), that somehow casts doubt on the reality of the God of Israel?

      sounds like you arent familiar with the theistic argument that an objective morality is strong proof for the God of Israel as creator :-)

      Also remember that the "Law" written by Moses circa ~2500 BC wasnt the first indication that God viewed certain behaviors as sinful.. that goes back to the garden.

      November 30, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
    • Chardwatch2 Electric Bugaloo

      Same old excuses from Chad. Doesn't accept common scientific knowledge, makes a leap to claim his god is the answer, and then fails to provide any proof for this god.

      November 30, 2012 at 4:07 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Chad,

      the Tigris and Euphrates likely flooded every year – and certainly flooded regularly. At their confluence, it is easy to imagine a flood that stretched from horizon to horizon. Doesn't mean it covered the whole world.

      November 30, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Chad,

      where do you get this estimate: "Moses circa ~2500 BC"?

      I thought scholarly consensus of a Moses-like figure in Transjordan seems to be ca 1250-1200 BCE.

      Surely he at least has to come *before* Abraham?

      "Israel Finkelstein points to the appearance of settlements in the central hill country around 1200 as the earliest of the known settlements of the Israelites"
      See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moses

      The estimates for Abraham are very approximately Ca 1800 – 1700 BCE, perhaps roughly contemporaneous with Hammurabi see:

      "There have been over two hundred attempts to match the biblical chronology to dates in history, two of the more influential being the traditional Jewish dates (Abraham lived 1812 BCE to 1637 BCE), and those of the 17th century Archbishop James Ussher* (Abraham lived 1976 BCE to 1801 BCE); but the most that can be said with some degree of certainty is that the standard Hebrew text of Genesis places Abraham in the earlier part of the second millennium BCE."
      See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abraham

      * Him again!

      November 30, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      Sorry, should be:

      "Surely he at least has to come *after* Abraham?"

      Got muddled up with the BCE dates going backwards and wrote the wrong thing.

      November 30, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Chad,

      "objective morality"

      No such thing.

      November 30, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Chad,

      the Hebrew myths – like Noah and the cosmologies are Mesopotamian in origin. The legacy of the Epic of Gilgamesh is unmistakable in the Noah story.

      The Hebrew laws – like the oft repeated "eye for an eye" (how many times does it appear in the bible?) are also Mesopotamian in origin*

      That the Hebrew traditions are a melange of Sumerian and Canaanite (El Shaddai) traditions are hardly a surprise. The bible is clear that Abraham comes from Ur (Genesis 15:7).

      From this we can readily conclude, that they are not "God given to God's chosen people" but human invention – like all other myths.

      * Regarding the Code of Hammurabi:

      "A carving at the top of the stele portrays Hammurabi receiving the laws from the god Shamash or possibly Marduk, and the preface states that Hammurabi was chosen by the gods of his people to bring the laws to them. Parallels between this narrative and the giving of laws by God in Jewish tradition to Moses and similarities between the two legal codes suggest a common ancestor in the Semitic background of the two." – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hammurabi

      November 30, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
    • Guy

      Chad
      You are a fine christian apologist your aim is to present a rational basis for the christian faith and will defend the faith against all objections and you attempt to expose the flaws of other world views, that is your mandate. All of your arguements end up with the same conclusion "god's Truth". Faith being blind trust in the absence of evidence or even in the teeth of evidence, You may want to quit demanding proof from others when you always fail to provide any proof for your views, that is dishonest.

      November 30, 2012 at 5:09 pm |
    • ME II

      @Chad,
      "so atheists have no problem with God orchestrating the development of organisms into the compexity that we see now?"
      Evolution says nothing about God. Why would atheists have an issue with that?

      "Until stasis and rapid change can be demonstrated to have occurred..."
      What exactly do you mean by "demostrated to have occurred"? Are you asking to see a demonstration of large-scale morphological speciation? Which, of course, is unrealistic. For more smaller scale evolution I would refer you to Lenski's experiment, which actually showed stasis (~30,000 generations) and rapid change (citrate utilization). (http://myxo.css.msu.edu/ecoli/)

      "Until stasis and rapid change can be demonstrated to have occurred using some purely naturalistic mechanism, the requirement for external orchestration remains in the pool of explanatory options."
      I think your null hypothesis is reversed. Until external orchestration is shown by the evidence, then it the null hypothesis indicates that external orchestration had no effect, i.e. null.

      There is evidence that "naturalistic mechcanisms" can produce such changes. There is not always evidence that specific mechanism actually did produce specific changes, but in general they can.
      (http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evosite/evo101/VC1aModesSpeciation.shtml)

      November 30, 2012 at 5:51 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      You know the Chard is rattled when you see a slew of emoticons. What a fvcktard.

      November 30, 2012 at 6:37 pm |
  19. MrHanson

    Another win for CNN and for those "All Christians are stupid" group you seem to like so much! Thanks for putting providing more fuel for the "I hate Christians" sheeples in these forums who have no clue about either side of the debate. Why not have an article on what Michael Behe, Barry Arrington, Casey Luskin, etc... have to say in the matter? Why not put a link to the "The Magicians Twin" video? No I guess not. We must keep the status quo of the far left in these forums. Pat Robertson is about as much an athority on Intelligent design, as Ellen Degeneres is on evolution.

    November 30, 2012 at 12:39 pm |
  20. realtalker

    This guy is becoming more sane everyday. Saying creationism is ridiculous, saying pot should be legal, he's becoming more christlike all the time. What's sad to me is the question that prompted his answer. This woman thought her husband would go to hell for not subscribing to the idea that the Earth was 6000 years old. Many people think that believing in heaven and hell at all is crazy, but even if you believe in it (I do by the way) within that context, to think that believing in a young earth is a condition for your entrance into heaven is insane. That is nowhere to be found in the bible. People need to stop taking the word of the whackiest "christian" leaders and read the bible for themselves. Most of these so called christian evengelists are not christians at all. Yes, I went there.

    November 30, 2012 at 12:39 pm |
    • Ralph

      Amen, brother (or sister)!!

      November 30, 2012 at 12:52 pm |
    • mb2010a

      Which Bible? There are dozens out there that are re-written to fit whatever religions is using it. There are over 500 books that were thrown out of the current "Bible" in the 1400's...why bother??

      November 30, 2012 at 1:14 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.