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My Take: Jesus was a dirty, dirty God
January 5th, 2013
10:00 PM ET

My Take: Jesus was a dirty, dirty God

Editor’s note: Johnnie Moore is the author of Dirty God (#DirtyGod). He is a professor of religion and vice president at Liberty University. Keep track of him @johnnieM .

By Johnnie Moore, Special to CNN

(CNN) - Jesus was a lot more like you than you think, and a lot less clean cut than this iconic image of him that floats around culture.

You know the image. It’s the one where Jesus is walking like he’s floating in robes of pristine white followed by birds singing some holy little ditty. He’s polished, manicured, and clearly – God.

But despite the Christian belief that Jesus was both fully God and fully man, Jesus was a rather dirty God.

He was the “earthly” son of a carpenter, and life in the first-century was both more lurid and unfinished than our collective religious memory seems to recall.

To that end, I suggested recently to several astounded colleagues of mine that Jesus actually had to go to the bathroom, perhaps even on the side of the road between Capernaum and Jerusalem.

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What tipped them over the edge was when I insinuated that Jesus, like almost every other human being living in the rural world in that time, might have even had dysentery on an occasion or two.

Someone said, “You mean that Jesus might have had severe diarrhea?”

“Yep,” I replied, “That’s exactly what I mean.”

It seems like an obvious statement if you believe that Jesus was “fully God” and “fully man” (as most evangelicals believe and call the Incarnation), but to some of us it seems in the least, inappropriate, and at the most, sacrilege, to imagine Jesus in this way. We might believe that God was also man, but we picture him with an ever-present halo over his head.

But, actually, the Jesus of the Bible was more human than most people are conditioned to think.

I call this the dirty side of Jesus. He was grittier, and a lot more like us than maybe we believe, and that’s one of the reasons why so many thousands of people followed him so quickly.

They could relate to him.

He was the teacher from a small town who knew and understood the economic insecurity that was common in the first century. Times must have been rather tough for Jesus at points in his life, for he even spoke of being homeless, having to sleep on the ground with no roof over his head.

He also knew what it was like to have his message rejected and how it felt to be misunderstood. Jesus was regarded with such little significance in his hometown that one of his critics once remarked sardonically, “Isn’t this the carpenter’s son?” Jesus eventually had to move to different city (Capernaum) because his teachings so infuriated the people living in his hometown that they drove him out of Nazareth and even tried to throw him off a cliff.

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The real Jesus had dirt underneath his fingernails and calluses on his hands. He probably smelled badly from sweating profusely in the Judean sun on his long hikes to Jerusalem, and Jesus was, without a doubt, rumored to be a hypocrite or absolutely mad for all the time he spent with prostitutes and those afflicted with leprosy.

Not exactly have a clean-cut image.

He had a rather shady reputation.

Some people thought he was a revolutionary. The religious leaders called him a heretic, and others even accused him of being a drunkard and a glutton - in no small part because of the vagabond group of disciples he had with him. No serious religious leader of his day would have ever recruited such people.

For his core 12 disciples, Jesus included a tough-as-nails, bombastic fisherman (Peter), a chief tax collector named Matthew (the most hated popular figure of the time), an eventual traitor who was stealing money out of the offering bucket (Judas), a prolific doubter (Thomas), two jocks nicknamed the “Sons of Thunder” (James and John) and Simon the Zealot, a member of a radical political party which believed in using violence to kick out the Romans.

Jesus was sarcastic, too.

He often snapped back at the Pharisees with a tone fit for late-night television, and in a terribly embarrassing moment for all those around him, Jesus even called these respected religious teachers “snakes” that were probably sons of “Satan.”

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That’s not exactly the behavior of a sweet, self-help teacher with a halo over his head.

It’s the behavior of a frustrated man who might also be divine, but sure knows how it feels for annoying people to get under his skin.

Christians believe that Jesus chose to be born fully human, too, but why?

Lots of theologians have laid out opinions over the centuries, and in their opining they have tried once again to hijack Jesus’ humanity by defining it in philosophical terms. I believe it’s simpler than the philosophy and church councils and centuries of argument.

The brilliance of Christianity is the image of a God, named Jesus, arrived with dirty hands.

Jesus came in a time period when Greco-Roman gods were housed in gigantic temples and portrayed with superhuman powers and with superhuman physiques. Gods were believed to be far away from people on their mountains or hemmed up in their sanctuaries.

Jesus arrived in defiance of this prevailing imagery.

Jesus didn’t come flinging lightning bolts from a mountaintop, or playing politics in Rome. He came to live in a typical Middle Eastern village called Nazareth that was home to a couple hundred typical people. He didn’t decide to brandish his power, but to spend most of his time with the powerless and disenfranchised. And when he started a religious movement that reshaped history, he did it in the most profound and anticlimatic way:

He let himself be killed, and then he busted open a tomb.

In Jesus we meet a Savior who understood the desire to sleep just a few more hours, and who had to control his temper sometimes. In Jesus we find a God we can relate to because he chose to relate to us.

He was the God who became dirty so that the world’s souls might be made clean.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Johnnie Moore.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Jesus

soundoff (7,741 Responses)
  1. I love Jesus

    The New Testament used to have a chapter where the disciples formed a circle jerk around Jesus and they all spewed their semen on Jesus, and he was covered with their milky, sticky juice.

    This chapter was later removed.

    January 6, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
  2. Chad

    @End Religion "Until I see your extraordinary, tested and peer-reviewed proof of God, proof of every absurd assertion in the bible and proof of Jesus, it is entirely a fraud."

    =Perhaps you can explain:
    1. what "extraordinary" means, and what would satisfy that requirement
    2. what "tested " means, and what would satisfy that requirement
    3. what "peer-reviewed" means, and what would satisfy that requirement
    4. why it isnt fallacious to say "until you prove Jesus exists, He doesnt" when you claim it IS fallacious to say "Until you prove Jesus doesnt exist, He does"?

    thanks in advance !

    January 6, 2013 at 3:26 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Chad, why do you ask these sorts of questions when you are only going to dismiss any answer you get, no matter how well-thought out or in depth? Why do you lie so much?

      Have you figured out yet how stupid you are to ask for reasons for belief/disbelief that are not also conclusions? Have you figured out why it is so ignorant of you to make the claim that the universe had a beginning...............and...............therefore.........BIG INVISIBLE SKY WIZARD WITH MAGIC SPELLZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ!!

      January 6, 2013 at 3:29 pm |
    • Perry Keener

      You are all knowing and all wise! Wow! You are greater then our creator!

      January 6, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
    • Chad

      @End Religion said "until I see ...."

      I am merely asking to get some details on what he wants to see. Which is reasonable, right?

      January 6, 2013 at 3:32 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Numbers 1 and 4 are valid points, numbers 2 and 3 are not (this is well established scientific theory).

      Chad 2, End Religion 2

      January 6, 2013 at 3:36 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      I'm not talking about your OP, Chad, I'm talking about you, and your disgusting behavior that will manifest if this thread continues as all your other threads. You show a complete lack of regard for reasoning because the reasoning that you will not question for your own beliefs you will dismiss, deny, and NEVER consider when it is against your beliefs. The answers that you would immediately accept if they bolstered your position, you will never consider if they do not bolster your a priori decisions about how reality is.

      You lie. You dismiss. And you see nothing wrong with your arrogant decisions to lie and dismiss. I want to know why.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
    • Chad

      Hunh?
      you lost me.. those are @End Religions criteria, all four of them..

      January 6, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
    • Chad

      @moby,
      1. I am merely asking to get some details on what he wants to see. Which is reasonable, right?
      2. what "lie" are you referring to? (or is it the age old accusation that anyone who says the God of Israel is real, is lying?)

      January 6, 2013 at 3:40 pm |
    • Answer

      Chad the tool .. still funny as usual.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Chad, I'm not discussing your OP, I'm discussing your behavior that will manifest on this thread.

      You lie about an idea that does not align to your a priori beliefs. You dismiss reasoning without concern that you would tout and flout if it upheld your a priori beliefs. I want to know why.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:43 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Chad, I wasn't referring to End Religion's comment and implied criteria, which I have taken issue with elsewhere, but to the point you were trying to make with each of the 4 questions you raised. 2 of the issues you raise have merrit, 2 do not.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:44 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Sorry, meant to type "you lie about any......"

      January 6, 2013 at 3:44 pm |
    • Chad

      @moby "You lie about an idea that does not align to your a priori beliefs"
      @Chad "example please? Is there one?

      @Moby: "You dismiss reasoning without concern that you would tout and flout if it upheld your a priori beliefs.
      @Chad "example please? is there one?

      January 6, 2013 at 3:47 pm |
    • Chad

      @Saraswati,
      you lost me, what issues have I raised here? I am asking for clarification on requirements that @End Religion stated..

      January 6, 2013 at 3:51 pm |
    • ChadWatch 2 Electric Bugaloo

      I still trying to decide which are more boring – these four points or Craig's five points. I'll get back to you.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:52 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Nope. You have all the examples you need, Chad, stored in your mind. You may not have the intellectual integrity to call them up to your remembrance, but they're there. I want to know why you lie so much when it comes to these "debates" and why you dismiss so much reasoning that you would not if they supported your position.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:53 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Chad, you are currently lying in your treatment of Saraswati's points to you and you are dismissing the issues he raised. Your behavior is the problem, and it comes out in every thread just as it just has, now.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:55 pm |
    • Chad

      :-)
      think you'll have to give me an example, otherwise the only thing I can come up with is:

      Q. "Why do you lie and say that the God of Israel is real when you know He isnt"
      A. "uh... I know the God of Israel IS real.."

      Q. "Why arent you convinced by my (@moby) stunningly logical refutations of Christianity ("the bible is STUPID"), and instead dishonestly claim that my stunningly logical refutations arent convincing"
      A. "uh.. .because you havent provided any evidence to back up your conclusion that "the bible is stupid" and Christianity is all nonsense.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:00 pm |
    • ElmerGantry

      @Chad
      It's your claim that God exists, the burden of proof is on you not the unbeliever.

      Go into court some time, make a plaintiff's claim and then tell the judge it is up to the defendent to prove your claim. You will be laughed out of the court room faster than a blink of an eye. See how silly that is?

      You claim God exist, you get to prove your claim.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:01 pm |
    • the AnViL

      "what "extraordinary" means, and what would satisfy that requirement"

      extraordinary evidence of jebus would include archaeological evidence, birth records, census records, something – ANYTHING more than what you've got now – which is nothing.

      "what "tested" means, and what would satisfy that requirement"

      "tested" would mean – evidence that can be verfied by radiometric dating or any other means of verification based entirely on the type of extraordinary evidence you provide.

      "what "peer-reviewed" means, and what would satisfy that requirement"

      peer-reviewed would mean – reviewed by others from the same disciplines you used to test and verify your evidence – more scientists from whatever fields that cover whatever testing you perform from whichever disciplines are necessistated by the types of extraordinary evidence you've provided.

      "why it isnt fallacious to say "until you prove Jesus exists, He doesnt" when you claim it IS fallacious to say "Until you prove Jesus doesnt exist, He does"?"

      because the statement "jebus exists" is a positive claim for which the onus of evidence lies on those making it.

      the statement "until you prove jebus exists – etc.." is only in answer to the original positive assertion (made by whomever – whenever) that jebus exists.

      "Until you prove Jesus doesnt exist, He does"?" is an argument from ignorance... argumentum ad ignorantiam = logical fallacy = failed method of shifting the onus of evidence.

      chadtard = 12 yr old w/3rd grade education

      ch'ch'chaaaaaaaaaaaaa

      January 6, 2013 at 4:04 pm |
    • Saraswati

      You wrote
      "=Perhaps you can explain:
      1. what "extraordinary" means, and what would satisfy that requirement"

      This is a fair issue to raise. End Religion seems to be drawing on the saying "Extraordinary Claims Require Extraordinary Evidence" which is fallacious for the reason you are getting at – it is a matter of personal preference what is extraordinary and what is not.

      "2. what "tested " means, and what would satisfy that requirement"

      Not such a good point, we have scientific standards for that and we can assume that those are being referenced.

      "3. what "peer-reviewed" means, and what would satisfy that requirement"

      Again we have some standards. Yes, you might quibble on the exact board of reviewers, but it would be people in the various scienfic and philosophical fields addressed.

      "4. why it isnt fallacious to say 'until you prove Jesus exists, He doesnt' when you claim it IS fallacious to say 'Until you prove Jesus doesnt exist, He does'?"

      Very true point which, sadly, should be very obvious. Scary that it is not. I think I also pointed this out to the same person before.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:06 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      And now the lies and dismissals are in full swing. You lie and you dismiss, and you know you lie and dismiss. You can't be "caught" on the lies and dismissals because guess what? You'll lie and dismiss the accusations and the evidence that proves you lie and dismiss.

      You can't help yourself, Chad, and it happens in every thread. I want to know why.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:09 pm |
    • Chad

      @Saraswati,
      thank you for a real answer!

      your points:
      @Chad "2. what "tested " means, and what would satisfy that requirement"
      @Saraswati "Not such a good point, we have scientific standards for that and we can assume that those are being referenced."
      @Chat "how are scientific standards going verify the existence of a person (the God of Israel, Jesus)? What scientific standard would you use to verify my existence? (remember, you have to do them where you are right now, you can't demand that I come to where you are and cooperate with testing)"

      @Chad "3. what "peer-reviewed" means, and what would satisfy that requirement"
      @Saraswati "Again we have some standards. Yes, you might quibble on the exact board of reviewers, but it would be people in the various scienfic and philosophical fields addressed."
      @Chad "do historians count as peer reviewers? Remember, we are talking about persons here and events that happened in the past.

      =====
      @moby, pay attention to Saraswati post, that's what an answer looks like.
      @anvil, please read Saraswati post carefully...

      January 6, 2013 at 4:15 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Saraswati and AnVil,

      Pay attention to Chad's "technique" of simply lying and/or dismissing anything that he does not think supports his a priori beliefs. It will occur with greater and greater frequency in this thread from here on until it ends.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:18 pm |
    • ChadWatch 2 Electric Bugaloo

      Ah, yes, lies meets diversion meets avoidance meets "let me assume you are saying this . ." It is so much easy to call such a meeting =>Chad.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:20 pm |
    • ChadWatch 2 Electric Bugaloo

      so much *easier*

      January 6, 2013 at 4:21 pm |
    • the AnViL

      yeah chadtard – i did read saraswatis post... here's what stuck out:

      ""4. why it isnt fallacious to say 'until you prove Jesus exists, He doesnt' when you claim it IS fallacious to say 'Until you prove Jesus doesnt exist, He does'?"

      Very true point which, sadly, should be very obvious. Scary that it is not. I think I also pointed this out to the same person before."

      actually – no – it isn't a "very true point" – it's still argumentum ad ignorantiam.

      the statement "jebus existed" is a positive claim – and the onus of evidence for that claim lies wholly and entirely on the shoulders of those who make it.

      "until you prove Jesus exists, He doesnt" is the same as "until you prove pixies exist, they don't" or "until you can prove the moon is made from green cheese, it isn't"

      the statement "Until you prove Jesus doesnt exist, He does" is argumentum ad ignorantiam.

      an argument from ignorance such as this is used in an attempt to shift the onus of evidence. it's another weak, ignorant attempt.

      stop being dense – this has been explained to you many times, dummy.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:24 pm |
    • End Religion

      a couple of days ago there was a long (as usual) thread where Chad repeatedly dodged questions that weren't to his advantage to answer, again, and was proved lying, again, and then when others had taken their precious time to thoroughly answer his questions he could not accept any of the logical arguments. At the end of that post (which i was not a part of until the end) i said something like "let this serve as the thread that answers why I will not debate chad."

      January 6, 2013 at 4:25 pm |
    • Chad

      so... are you saying that
      1. This summary of your accusation is inaccurate
      or
      2. The summary is accurate, and your answers are examples of lying

      just say #1 or #2.. it's easy! just provide a clear answer.

      =======
      Q. "Why do you lie and say that the God of Israel is real when you know He isnt"
      A. "uh... I know the God of Israel IS real.."

      Q. "Why arent you convinced by my (@moby) stunningly logical refutations of Christianity ("the bible is STUPID"), and instead dishonestly claim that my stunningly logical refutations arent convincing"
      A. "uh.. .because you havent provided any evidence to back up your conclusion that "the bible is stupid" and Christianity is all nonsense.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:25 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      The funny thing about Chad is that he believes he is doing something special, when in reality, it's the exact same method used by the believer of any cult. Dismiss, deny and lie. The muslim who is likewise ensconced in his belief set would use the exact same method of simply redefining the terms to suit his own purpose/religion. It's a very easy trick, and the refuge of the lazy debater.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:29 pm |
    • Chad

      @anvil,
      good opportunity for you to learn something here.

      - read @Saraswati's post a couple hundred more times
      - read what atheists say:

      http://atheism.about.com/od/atheismquestions/a/strong_weak.htm


      Because knowledge claims are involved, strong atheism carries an initial burden of proof which does not exist for weak atheism. Any time a person asserts that some god or any gods do not or cannot exist, they obligate themselves to support their claims. This narrower conception of atheism is often thought by many (erroneously) to represent the entirety of atheism itself.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:30 pm |
    • Chad

      @moby,

      all you had to do was say #1 or #2... If I didnt know you better I would assume that you were purposefully avoiding specifically saying anything, since you were scared that it could be demonstrated to be incorrect..

      oh.. wait... perhaps that is precisely what you are doing?

      January 6, 2013 at 4:31 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Chad

      "how are scientific standards going verify the existence of a person (the God of Israel, Jesus)? What scientific standard would you use to verify my existence? (remember, you have to do them where you are right now, you can't demand that I come to where you are and cooperate with testing)"

      It would depend on the particular Christian conception of God, of which there are many. First, I don't belief there are true proofs outside of mathematics and philosophy, but instead would be referencing convincing collections of evidence. For many God conceptions no evidence would be available beyond personal experience. Here testing would look for consistency and for possible transmission of information that would not otherwise be known. For other god conceptions, one could measure the impact of prayer or even find a material god sitting on his planet. It would really depend on the very specific belief. I am by no means advocating this type of testing. Some god conceptions would, of course, be completely untestable.

      How would you prove my existence? Ultimately, as I previously mentioned, you couldn't “prove” I exist, even if I were sitting right in front of you. But you most certainly could gain evidence without seeing me from looking at things I have created to looking at government records to talking with people who know me. But I am like most gods in that way...reluctant to publically display my identi’ty to a million strangers. Maybe your god is just weary of internet stalkers. :)

      @Chad "do historians count as peer reviewers? Remember, we are talking about persons here and events that happened in the past.

      Yes, historians would count as reviewers.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:32 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Chad, the proof your behavior is already fully displayed in this very thread for all to see. I claimed that you would provide it, and you did, in the very next post. I further claimed that you would continue to provide evidence of your lying and dismissal from arrogance throughout the life of this thread. You are doing that nicely.

      So you'll see, not only have I provided evidence of your lying, dismissive behavior, but I predicted where it would show up in live time. The evidence is in thousands of examples throughout your previous threads on this blog, continues to occur in this very thread, now, and will continue to appear in your future threads.

      Of course YOU won't admit to it because you're a lying dismissive individual. That's the point. Of course you are going to lie about their being evidence of your lying; of course you are going to dismiss evidence of your dismissals. It's expected and received as well as being proof of your continual behavior.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:39 pm |
    • the AnViL

      yah – and you get the same correction as everyone else who believes that drivel:

      the statement “gods exist” is a positive claim.

      the statement “gods do not exist” is a negative claim that only responds to the positive one.

      it wouldn't make any sense to anyone except the enemies of reason, to go around denouncing the existence of unknown or flatly fictional beings, if there isn't anyone making the positive claim that those things do exist.

      to state that the as sertion “gods do not exist” is a positive claim really misses the mark entirely.

      positing a concept-being (god) is adding, not subtracting.

      to state that “gods exist” is a negative claim in response to “gods do not exist” entirely ignores the fact that ‘gods’ is still an added or positive const ituent to the conversation.

      the onus of evidence remains nestled sweetly on the shoulders of those making the positive assertion that gods exist.

      i have again proven that austin cline is wrong and you're stupid for copying off his paper

      lolz

      January 6, 2013 at 4:39 pm |
    • Chad

      @Saraswati,
      thank you again for providing answers to questions! (please pay attention moby...)

      ======
      @Saraswati "It would depend on the particular Christian conception of God, of which there are many"
      @Chad "that's not true, Christians have a variety of interpretations as to what the biblical text means, however they do not disagree on the existence of the God of Israel and His Son Jesus Christ.
      If they dont believe Jesus is divine, or that God hasnt interacted with humanity, then they arent Christian churches regardless of the sign above the door.. Those beliefs are what defines Christianity.

      =====
      @Saraswati " First, I don't belief there are true proofs outside of mathematics and philosophy, but instead would be referencing convincing collections of evidence"
      @Chad "ok, so since the list of requirements speaks to what atheists require as "proof" of the existence of the God of Israel, you would support changing the requirement to "convincing collections of evidence"?

      =====
      @Saraswati ". For many God conceptions no evidence would be available beyond personal experience. Here testing would look for consistency and for possible transmission of information that would not otherwise be known."
      @Chad "I disagree, if your concept of God doesnt include the God of Israel as revealed in the bible, you arent a Christian. That's the definition"

      =======
      @Saraswati " For other god conceptions, one could measure the impact of prayer or even find a material god sitting on his planet."
      @Chad "that's where we get into the notion of coercion to a belief.
      I would say that your requirement criteria cant include a coercive requirement, as God as revealed in the bible has clearly said that He will not coerce anyone into belief.

      ====
      @Saraswati " "How would you prove my existence?" Ultimately, as I previously mentioned, you couldn't “prove” I exist, even if I were sitting right in front of you. But you most certainly could gain evidence without seeing me from looking at things I have created to looking at government records to talking with people who know me."
      @Chad "agreed"

      ====
      @Saraswati "But I am like most gods in that way...reluctant to publically display my identi’ty to a million strangers. Maybe your god is just weary of internet stalkers. "
      @Chad "sigh.. .really? that wasnt necessary."

      ====
      @Saraswati "Yes, historians would count as reviewers."
      @Chad "good! we're all set there."

      January 6, 2013 at 4:47 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Chad's argument that proof for his god can't be coercive is just a way for him to beg off measure-ability. Basically, Chad wants to claim that there's evidence for his god all over the place, but none of it amounts to proof, so you have to make a leap of faith to get more faith---it's the argument of every cult and god belief.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:56 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Anvil
      “actually – no – it isn't a "very true point" – it's still argumentum ad ignorantiam.”

      No, and argumentum ad ignorantiam claims that something is true because it hasn’t been proven false (or the opposite) – what I am saying, and what Chad was saying, is nothing of the sort. I am just pointing out that those two statements are equivalent.

      “the statement "jebus existed" is a positive claim – and the onus of evidence for that claim lies wholly and entirely on the shoulders of those who make it.”

      Here’s where you are falling down – a false distinction between a positive and negative claim. The statements that “god exists” and “god doesn’t exist” are, in fact, logically equivalent.

      "until you prove Jesus exists, He doesnt" is the same as "until you prove pixies exist, they don't" or "until you can prove the moon is made from green cheese, it isn't"

      It is also the same as “until you prove water exists it doesn’t”.

      “the statement "Until you prove Jesus doesnt exist, He does" is argumentum ad ignorantiam.”

      But no one is making that claim…I think you just have a straw man.

      Look, I disagree with Chad's theology, but on this point he's right, and I'm going to call right when I see it. Ignoring this very important point just weakens your argument.

      January 6, 2013 at 5:02 pm |
    • Chad

      @anvil,
      Most of your confusion stems from simply not understanding some basic concepts of philosophy, for example you completely misunderstand what a "positive claim" is.

      1. The philosophical burden of proof or onus (probandi) is the obligation on a party in an epistemic dispute to provide sufficient warrant for their position.
      2. Holder of the burden of proof: When debating any issue, there is an implicit burden of proof on the person asserting a claim. "If this responsibility or burden of proof is shifted to a critic, the fallacy of appealing to ignorance is committed"

      please note, there is NO differentiation between the burden of proof on a "positive claim" vs a "negative claim". If you make an assertion, your are obligated to back it up

      Hopefully the reason for that becomes clear to you when you understand that the terms "positive claim" and "negative claim" are pretty much useless when determining burden of proof..

      For example, if you call a positive claim, anything that asserts that something is true, then how do you stop me from simply converting my claim that "God is real" to "The claim that God is not real is false".

      In other words, every positive claim is just a negative claim in reverse.

      January 6, 2013 at 5:06 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Chad "that's not true, Christians have a variety of interpretations as to what the biblical text means, however they do not disagree on the existence of the God of Israel and His Son Jesus Christ.
      If they dont believe Jesus is divine, or that God hasnt interacted with humanity, then they arent Christian churches regardless of the sign above the door.. Those beliefs are what defines Christianity.”
      Your definition of Christianity…obviously those with the signs above the door disagree. I don’t plan on getting into a debate on that since it’s a matter of definition, and I believe definitions are made by humans.
      =====

      @Chad "ok, so since the list of requirements speaks to what atheists require as "proof" of the existence of the God of Israel, you would support changing the requirement to "convincing collections of evidence"?
      Yes, the “proof” argument on either side is a bit silly. But I guess people just mean “convincing evidence” in general when they say it without really getting the distinction.
      =====

      @Chad "I disagree, if your concept of God doesnt include the God of Israel as revealed in the bible, you arent a Christian. That's the definition"
      Again, your human made definition. Since I don’t have your premise that (I have to assume) god gave a definition of “Christianity”, I don’t have to accept your definition.
      =======

      @Chad "that's where we get into the notion of coercion to a belief.
      I would say that your requirement criteria cant include a coercive requirement, as God as revealed in the bible has clearly said that He will not coerce anyone into belief.
      You say “coerce belief” I say “provide reasonable evidence”.

      @Chad "agreed"
      ====
      @Saraswati "But I am like most gods in that way...reluctant to publically display my identi’ty to a million strangers. Maybe your god is just weary of internet stalkers. "
      @Chad "sigh.. .really? that wasnt necessary."
      It was a joke…not aimed at you in any way. Sorry if it seemed personal; I was just trying to introduce levity. I don’t like to take it all to seriously.

      January 6, 2013 at 5:10 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Chad wrote:

      "In other words, every positive claim is just a negative claim in reverse."

      Correct. These are logically the same thing and people on either side of the argument who don't get it really need to understand this point before moving on with their argument.

      January 6, 2013 at 5:14 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Saraswati, you're tripping over semantics without considering intention.

      The following claims do not share the same burden of proof because of the only context we are aware of for the discussion of unicorns:
      1. Unicorns exist
      2. Unicorns do not exist.

      Same thing with claims about god existing and god not existing. If the god believers did not say he existed, there'd be no claim about his non-existence. Perhaps you think that by humoring the Chad on philosophical semantic equivocations you will get something other than what he has given so far, but I guarantee you that throughout and in the end he will simply dismiss your points that are worthy of his consideration and lie about the weight of your arguments which are valid.

      January 6, 2013 at 5:16 pm |
    • Chad

      @Saraswati "You say “coerce belief” I say “provide reasonable evidence”."
      =>agreed, providing reasonable evidence is a good bar by which to judge any assertion.

      ====
      @Saraswati "I don’t have to accept your definition."
      @Chad "1. Without a definition of what Christianity IS, it is a meaningless notion and discussing it is impossible.
      2. The best definition MUST be the biblical one, right? The events recorded there are what created it.

      =======
      my thanks on your responses, you are one of 1 or 2 atheists I have ever encountered that was capable of actually discussing the position.

      January 6, 2013 at 5:20 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Moby, I don't have any great intent with regard to convincing Chad of anything, at least not immediately. Most people don't change their minds so easily, and if one does influence another's thought I find it is usually long down the road when the ideas have rattled around in one's head for a while. Chad's ideas, your ideas and others will rattle with my own, mine hopefully with others, and if we're lucky we'll all come out better for it.

      With regard to unicorns the arguments are the same if you are talking pure logic. If you are talking about a mass of evidence, I would disagree that you can simply dismiss people's personal experiences of god or the bible itself. I don't think the personal experiences of god indicate god's existence...I think they are better explained other ways. But they are not non-evidence. Same with the Bible. I just don’t think they are very good evidence.

      January 6, 2013 at 5:26 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Chad, I'm glad that Saraswati's method of discussion meets your approval and your d!ck's getting all hard, but from my perspective there's only one or two christians who have have met my approval and actually engaged in meaningful discussion about the issues. The rest of them, to some degree, were to busy engaging in redefining terms to force reasoning to align with their a priori beliefs, lying about the issues raised, and/or dismissing what they did not want to face.

      My claim stands; however, and the evidence will prove my thesis. Chad will continue his lying and dismissive behavior with Sraswati in this thread. (If Saraswati keeps on posting, that is).

      January 6, 2013 at 5:30 pm |
    • Real Deal

      Chad,
      "you are one of 1 or 2 atheists I have ever encountered that was capable of actually discussing the position."

      – I don't think that you are keeping accurate statistics of your encounters; and your: "capable of actually discussing the position" is quite arbitrary.

      – You regularly ignore those who are not aggressively confrontational... the "soft" atheists (who are btw, the majority of atheists), and your bombastic style does not attract them anyway.

      January 6, 2013 at 5:37 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Saraswati, I think it is MOST rational and makes MUCH sense to consider when one claim is the negation of another, unproven claim. Those two claims are not equal unless you are dealing with them on a philosophical continuum--in which case, they'd be dealt with completely separately. And that's not what's going on here or anywhere when it comes to the sorts of claims we are talking about.

      January 6, 2013 at 5:39 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Chad "1. Without a definition of what Christianity IS, it is a meaningless notion and discussing it is impossible.”

      Most objects in the world don’t have rigid definitions. To use the old example of a chair, we do not have to have a uniform definition to make it a functional word in most conversation. For some conversations such as “How many chairs in the warehouse” we do have to have a working definition that excludes couches and decides a stool from a chair, but this will not always be the same. Likewise with ‘Christianity’. For demographic purposes we use a definition that is usually something like “anyone who labels his or herself a Christian”. For other purposes you might use another definition.

      In the case we were addressing I think it’s OK not to have the same definition of Christianity…one could just address the particular god concept by defining that and then address that as a particular without using the word “Christian” at all.

      @Chad "2. The best definition MUST be the biblical one, right? The events recorded there are what created it.”
      I don’t think the bible defines Christianity, but even if it did I would not believe that was necessarily the best definition in all contexts. Or do you mean a definition that says only those who are biblical are Christians? If so that would be a very difficult thing to put a rope around as many people consider themselves to follow and understand the bible yet have different interpretations.

      =======
      @Chad “my thanks on your responses, you are one of 1 or 2 atheists I have ever encountered that was capable of actually discussing the position.”

      Thanks to you; it’s been an interesting conversation. I fear that you have met a biased sample of atheists, unfortunately. Most who are comfortable in not believing in a god don’t go around labeling themselves “atheists” as a prime identifier, but are active in other areas that more positively define our lives.

      January 6, 2013 at 5:44 pm |
    • the AnViL

      saraswati/chad:

      chad posted: "4. why it isnt fallacious to say "until you prove Jesus exists, He doesnt" when you claim it IS fallacious to say "Until you prove Jesus doesnt exist, He does"?"

      it is not fallacious to say "until you prove jebus exists, he doesn't".

      is it fallacious to say "until you prove water exists, it doesn't".???

      it is not fallacious to state: "until you prove 18-headed purple monkeys exist, they don't."

      can you prove any of those things exist? one or two maybe???

      lolz

      also – read this: reasonable people can agree beforehand on what each will accept as evidence to establish proof.

      it IS fallacious to say "until you prove jebus doesn't exist he does", because no one has established that jebus does exist... or did.

      "until you can prove there are no even primes greater than 2, they exist." would be a similar statement.

      there's no evidence to support your claim that even primes greater than 2 exist – or jebuses....

      stating that until someone proves that jebus does not exist, he does, or that until someone proves there is not a teapot is orbiting the sun somewhere between earth and mars – are examples of arguments from ignorance.

      and i'm saving this gem: "For example, if you call a positive claim, anything that asserts that something is true, then how do you stop me from simply converting my claim that "God is real" to "The claim that God is not real is false".

      In other words, every positive claim is just a negative claim in reverse." lolz

      srsly????

      let's be clear – i called the as sertion that "gods exist" – a positive as sertion – because it is. it's an additive, positive as sertion.
      i never stated that anything that as serts something is true(???LOL) and while you are – i'm laughing – because anything that as serts something only as serts something you retarded as s.

      how are you so confused??? is your head crammed up your rear or something? how do you even write or sit at a computer like that???

      you and many many others have claimed that the god of abraham is real. well no – the god of abraham is not real. and – until you can prove that the god of abraham is real (which you can never) he will never be real. really!

      and also – the only way to define xianity is with the bible – because the bible invented xianity – retards.

      stop being ignorant. srsly – i almost didn't write this – as i was so stunned by the stupidity that you've both displayed.

      simply incredible.

      i've got toy robots that i'm pretty sure are smarter than you.

      January 6, 2013 at 6:47 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Anvil, I read your [barely literate] response several times and can only conclude you didn’t understand the conversation since you misquote and misinterpret on several occasions. And when you start using bigoted terms calling people you disagree with “retarded as s” and “retard” you have lost the right to expect people to participate with you in civilized conversation.
      I suspect you will just dismiss this out of hand, but I suggest you go back and read the conversation over slowly and then read your response and just see if you can figure out where you misunderstood what was going on.

      January 6, 2013 at 8:36 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Moby

      "Chad, I'm glad that Saraswati's method of discussion meets your approval and your d!ck's getting all hard"

      I really don't know what hellish gutter you folks were raised in, but you obviously don't actually want to participate in a conversation or you wouldn't address people with language like this.

      January 6, 2013 at 8:38 pm |
    • the AnViL

      saraswati i have been clear...YOU are the one clearly demonstrating you don't understand! lol

      straw man??? lol

      "Here’s where you are falling down – a false distinction between a positive and negative claim. The statements that “god exists” and “god doesn’t exist” are, in fact, logically equivalent." ROTFLMAO

      show me!! be clear! – be specific!! – where am I missing the point???

      i'm thinking there's a language barrier problem...because you're waaaaaaaaay out of touch.

      January 6, 2013 at 10:34 pm |
  3. Bill Richardson

    1 Corinthians 2:14 tells us that the Word of God is spiritually discerned. In other words, mere intellect will not reveal the hidden truths of God's Word. These college religion professors always approach the Word of God through intelligence, rather than through the Holy Spirit. It just won't work. If you are not born of the Spirit of God then you will not understand God's Word, no matter how intelligent you are. Just what is Johnnie Moore attempting to accomplish with this piece? Jesus Christ would have to be just like everyone else in appearance, that is obvious. But to drone on about bodily functions and the seedier side of life in that time, what is the purpose? By the very fact that Jesus IS God proves that he could not have done or said anything that would have been a sin before God the Father for the simple fact that Jesus IS sinless. Is the net worth of Johnnie Moore's walk to prove that Jesus took a leak on the side of the road? How very sad!

    January 6, 2013 at 3:26 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      The problem, Bill R, is that there is no tested methodology for interpreting scripture through "the spirit." So it's all just people saying why they think it should be interpreted the way they think it should be interpreted. Nobody can prove anybody else's "spiritual interpretation" is correct or incorrect. "My interp is correct and yours is incorrect because I used 'the spirit'" is just an arrogant way of saying, "My ideas about what this verse means are correct because I believe they are and there's nothing you can do to change my mind."

      January 6, 2013 at 3:32 pm |
    • Bill Richardson

      Very nice Moby Schtick, but you knowingly avoided answering my question. I can address what you have said, but I would like an answer to my question first.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      I don't care about you or your question, Bill. I care that you pretend that something exists that does not. Your comments rest on the assumption that there actually exists a correct method of interpreting scripture. My issue is that if there is no way to verify if that the method is correct, then it's useless. But do beg off the issue on the technicality that I haven't pleased you by replying as you deem appropriate. It's appropriate.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:47 pm |
    • Bill Richardson

      Moby Schtick,
      Yours is a very common mistake. Theological hermeneutics are divided into groups and subgroups. however, the basic principal for interpreting the Word of God is, that you do not interpret the Word of God. Simply put, man does not interpret the Bible – the Bible interprets the Bible. This basic rule removes your entire argument. First of all, if you do not belong to the Lord, then the Bible is of little use to you (other than for attempting to use it against the Body of Christ). If you do belong to the Lord, then the Bible becomes the Living Word. Where most dear Christians fall into snares is when they attempt to place their own interpretation on God's Word. The Bible is spiritually discerned and, therefore, spiritually interpreted. If you feel that a certain passage means a particular something, then you go and find out what they rest of the Bible has to say about it. In following this method, albeit time consuming, you will come to a better understanding of God's Word and your faith will grow (Romans 10:17)

      January 6, 2013 at 3:59 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Bill, if your statement was correct there'd be no disagreement on what the bible means, and because its truths would be TESTABLE they would then be ACCEPTED across the disciplines and the bible would align with and help to prove math and science and physics just like math aligns with and helps to prove science and physics.

      But it doesn't work that way and various scholars all claiming to use the bible to interpret the bible can come up with very different ideas on what the interpretation should mean. So you're wrong, and you know it. The bible can be verified by the bible to the same degree that the Koran can be verified by the Koran and so on. The facts prove the bible to be collected myths from across many cultures and time periods and attempts at making something else fail entirely. Case closed.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:15 pm |
    • Bill Richardson

      Again Moby Schtick, you argue with faulty reasoning that your own arrogance hides from your understanding. Ok, one thing at a time: 1st, "if your statement was correct there'd be no disagreement on what the bible means." This is a major assumption on your part that the two are related. The fact is that man will always attempt to insert his own intelligence into Biblical interpretation. That just won't work. An interpretation is only as good as its source. If the source comes from faulty man, then the interpretation MUST BE faulty. 2nd, "the bible would align with and help to prove math and science and physics." Show me where the Word of God and science are not aligned. Before you start, remember that evolution and the big bang are mere theories, not facts. 3rd, "The facts prove the bible to be collected myths from across many cultures and time periods and attempts at making something else fail entirely." That is an absolute lie. There is no proof that other cultures are the basis for the Bible. I submit that the Word of God is the source of the other cultural stories. Can I prove this? No more than I can prove that the Bible is the Word of God. Again, it is simply a matter of faith. I realize that you do not believe the Bible to be true. No amount of words I use, even if I used them well, will ever persuade you otherwise. For the secular man, the Bible is of little use. It is a fair history book, it is a collection of prose, it offers insight into literary style, but little else. For the man of God, however, it is the written Word of God. John 1:1 tells us, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." In other words, the Word of God is Jesus Christ. This truth would never be accepted by those outside of the Body of Christ.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:51 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Sorry, Bill. I should have included that it was "Case closed" only for the rational individual willing to do the hard work of true research into the claims. We can track where the myths came from and we know that the interpretations of the bible are as numbered as those attempting to interpret it. So the bible cannot be verified, even by the bible, even by one who believes the bible. It's used as a mythbook to the degree that a mythbook can be used for that which mythbooks are good for because it is one.

      Case close for those who are intelligent enough to consider the factual evidence honestly and reason according to the findings without fear.

      January 6, 2013 at 5:44 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      And Bill, just so you know, I have no interest in sharing my reasoning on topics "one at a time" with someone who has already decided that I "argue with faulty reasoning that your own arrogance hides from your understanding."

      Be a man like me, and admit what I do. I don't care about your reasoning Bill because of where it's gotten you--to this point where you are willing to say the stupid sh!t that comes out of you.

      January 6, 2013 at 5:52 pm |
  4. Correctlycenter

    Atheists need to stop asking questions. Just believe the man in the robe. Bow your head. Bah. Bah.

    January 6, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
  5. lionlylamb

    In the Beginning did the Holy Spirit, (being nothingness) breathe and in one breath was made manifest the elemental consecrations of all physical embodiments. Chaos ensued in the beginning moments of the Holy Spirit’s first breath and many physical consecrations were destroyed of their first made forms and in decomposition became even smaller elemental conditionings. Thusly the first breath was made.

    January 6, 2013 at 3:24 pm |
    • dreamer96

      The Universe was created when God needed a new place to dump the trash from Heaven....

      January 6, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
    • Rumblefish

      You do realize there is undeniable evidence that shows humans have existed thousands of years prior to christianity, right? You don't? Wow.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
    • lionlylamb

      Of the Holy Spirit being Nothingness did the second breath impart upon all the elemental conditionings a vast swirling and all the elements began to congeal. Therefore upon nothingness’s second breath were elemental formations made to become great galaxies and systems of nebulas upon the allness of great nothingness, the Holy Spirit. Henceforth, the second breath of the Holy Spirit was made and galactic reasoning did become a reality.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
  6. Correctlycenter

    Atheists will exert vast amounts of time, money and energy attempting to disprove something they claim doesn't exist? Add Evolution to your ridiculous lists of myths with Santa, the Easter Bunny and the notorious and infamous Flying Spaghetti Monster...

    January 6, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
    • Gay Jesus

      The FSM loves you, accept his noodly appendage your life and you will be saved.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:22 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Correctlycenter, can you point me to any atheists who are trying to disprove as you say? thanks.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:26 pm |
    • Bill Richardson

      Moby Schtick,
      Can you tell us why atheists are so very scared of God? Before you deny that they are, look at the first part of CORECTLYCENTER's post, "Atheists will exert vast amounts of time, money and energy attempting to disprove something they claim doesn't exist?" If they are not scared, then why are they exerting so much time, money, and energy?

      January 6, 2013 at 3:33 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Bill, I know of no atheists who are afraid of god at all, and I know of no atheists trying to disprove any invisible and undetectable beings. If you know of atheists who are afraid of god then you should confront them on their hypocrisy. If you know of an atheists exerting energy to disprove beings who are so invisible and undetectable as to be irrelevant then you should try to get them psychiatric help.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:40 pm |
    • hal 9001

      I'm sorry, "Correctlycenter", but atheists only seem to refute foolish, unfounded claims made by people of various religious beliefs. Using my Idiomatic Expression Equivalency module (IEE), the expression that best matches the degree to which your assertions may represent truths is: "TOTAL FAIL".

      January 6, 2013 at 3:45 pm |
    • Bill Richardson

      Moby Schtick,
      You may deny the work of the atheists all you want, but you make yourself look bad while attempting to paint yourself as an enlightened person. The fact is (and these facts are researchable and provable) that atheists spend an inordinate amount of resources trying to disprove the existence of God. The fact is that atheists will expend whatever energy necessary to fight the teaching of God. The fact is that atheists will build a life work around discrediting the existence of God. The fact is, Moby Schtick that you are fully aware of these facts regardless of your vain attempts of denial.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:46 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      I'm not denying anything, retard, I'm telling you that you're wrong. I don't care if you believe me or feel the need to continue to define the situation in terms that make you feel more comfortable.

      No atheist is trying to "disprove god" as that would be stupid. The atheists you are referring to are probably ones who are telling believers how stupid they are to believe in imaginary beings. That you wish to call stupid and erroneous claims "facts" doesn't make them so, but I certainly understand your need to lie to yourself and frame them that way for the comfort of your own mind.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:50 pm |
    • Bill Richardson

      Moby Schtick,
      You must think very highly of yourself. Your arrogance is amazing. You deny any facts presented by arguing that you cannot prove them by YOUR standards. With that formula you can deny the world itself. You are not a reasonable person therefore I will cease attempting that futile endeavor. "Go from the presence of a foolish man when thou perceiveth not in him the lips of knowledge." I will, however, offer this observation, You are like a blind person that says there are no colors. You cannot find God for the same reason that a thief cannot find a policeman.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:18 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      I have not denied any facts, Bill. But I notice that by defining me according your preconceived ideas about wisdom and foolishness you can simply dismiss me as not worthy of your reasoning. It's what the muslim does in his mind when you will not accept his arguments for what "truth" is to him and how it is so obvious an unavoidable but because of the "hardness of your heart" you simply cannot see the truth of Islam.

      How lazy of you and how predictable. You'll notice that I predicted such behavior of you in my last response.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:25 pm |
  7. End Religion

    1) God is satisfied with his works – Gen 1:31
    God is dissatisfied with his works. – Gen 6:6
    2) God dwells in chosen temples – 2 Chron 7:12,16
    God dwells not in temples – Acts 7:48
    3) God dwells in light – Tim 6:16
    God dwells in darkness – 1 Kings 8:12/ Ps 18:11/ Ps 97:2
    4) God is seen and heard – Ex 33:23/ Ex 33:11/ Gen 3:9,10/ Gen 32:30/ Is 6:1/ Ex 24:9-11
    God is invisible and cannot be heard – John 1:18/ John 5:37/ Ex 33:20/ 1 Tim 6:16
    5) God is tired and rests – Ex 31:17
    God is never tired and never rests – Is 40:28

    January 6, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
    • Cathy

      Lessons to learn for which you refuse to learn.

      Isaiah 55:8 For my thoughts [are] not your thoughts, neither [are] your ways my ways, saith the LORD.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
    • End Religion

      Cathy, you can break free from religion. You don't need a god to be a nice person. Don't let the fraud of religion rule your life.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:40 pm |
    • OTOH

      Cathy,

      Have an unfaithful wife drink some magic water and her belly will swell and her thigh will rot, saith the LORD! (Numbers: 5)

      January 6, 2013 at 4:45 pm |
  8. Patrick

    How perfectly obvious, this must be coming from the evangelical side of Christianity who always picture Jesus as perfectly God from birth to resurrection, your top down Christology. The fact that what the author wrote about Jesus having experienced diarrhea shocked some of his colleagues is amusing. Of course he did, fully human, fully divine does not mean he lived life like a Temporal King or wealthy merchant. Nor could he preform miracles on himself or his surroundings to mitigate the realities of biological life. Jesus necessarily had to live a human life with all the ups and downs, all of them, in order to redeem us all

    January 6, 2013 at 3:18 pm |
    • Gay Jesus

      I wonder if Jesus defected on some of the disciples, like German scat movies?

      January 6, 2013 at 3:21 pm |
    • Julie

      Well said Patrick, Well said! Julie

      January 6, 2013 at 3:24 pm |
    • End Religion

      Jesus did not exist but is another fraud perpetuated by Flavius Josephus. In case you're just joining the game, the bible is complete fiction.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:24 pm |
  9. Jim

    Wow, you are paid to write? Try writing that about the muslim faith. So fabulous you took time to write and inform people that people 2000 years ago were dirtier than we are today. Liberals will do anything, little things, to just keep the barage on bringing down Jesus Christ. Oh yeah, you forgot how He died to save us. Why don't you work on islam a bit CNN? Hardly ever check CNN sites out, I did today and am sorry to hear how important it was for CNN to put this up on the main page as a top story, 3rd link. Go report news, like how you work for a company so full of liberalism that it stinks. Just great how CNN is even played in McDonald's. Worthless news.

    January 6, 2013 at 3:18 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Jim, you idiot, why don't you research who the writer is before looking like a fool with such retarded comments you make. Seriously, have you ever considered how stupid you appear to those who understand the issue and then read your opinions? lol

      January 6, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
    • Gay Jesus

      Christians seem so proud to be not as violent of muslims. Congratulations you nitwit!

      January 6, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Should we start counting how many people have posted "Try writing that about Mohammad"? Seriously folks, this is a guy from a very Christian university writing for an audience that is predominantly Christian. He's a VP at LIBERTY for goodness sake. Are you even reading the articles before posting?

      January 6, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
    • holla

      Jim, the writer here is professor of religious. He have been study it far more than you do so be gave us his honest words about Jesus.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
    • holla

      *he gave*

      January 6, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
  10. Space Horse, Course to Course

    Jesus was an American-loving, blond-haired, blue-eyed fiscal conservative who liked to hunt and fish. How else can this be marketed to xenophobes from the south?

    January 6, 2013 at 3:17 pm |
  11. Julie

    Johnnie Moore's article just makes me sad! And he's a "professor of religion" – Who's side are you on? Julie

    January 6, 2013 at 3:17 pm |
    • Saraswati

      I hope you're posting this as a joke, otherwise it makes me sadder than any post I've yet seen today.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:21 pm |
    • holla

      You're sad because Jesus isn't appear as you was told.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:32 pm |
    • TruthPrevails :-)

      Being a professor of religion does not mean he has to pick a side.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:32 pm |
  12. Gay Jesus

    Jesus was dirty, he lived in a dirty, iron-age, disgusting region in the worst places on out our planet.

    People who worship Jesus, and his genocidal dad Yahweh are simply stupid people.

    January 6, 2013 at 3:14 pm |
    • searchingintruth

      I've had some anger towards religious folks before, myself. But, I later realized that SOME of the Christian people that you call stupid are also some of the kindest and most loving people that you could ever meet. Nevertheless, stupid people invariably come from all backgrounds in life, religious or otherwise. Its hard for some people to accept or conceptualize that God possibly exists, and many unbelieving people often stumble about trying to rationalize and intellectualize faith in God, when it fact, it can't be entirely rationalized at all. Faith is a leap of faith that goes beyond science, trusting in something that you can't verify with mathematical calculations, or see through the lens of a microscope or telescope. People tend to hate and criticize things they don't understand. But when they need help from someone that treats them kindly, they might consider that the Christian person they disagree with is really a compassionate and sincere human being instead of a monster. Certainly,not everyone that calls themselves a Christian is living like a Christian, and their are many hypocrites, wolves in sheep's clothing, as well. But let's not let bigotry and hate rule our thinking with regard to ALL believers..

      January 6, 2013 at 3:35 pm |
  13. Christians = Gullible people

    Jesus is dirty, consider him and his dad are either unwilling or unable to prevent the slaughter of innocent children, whether by the hands of man or in natural disasters.

    January 6, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
  14. JChristine

    Whether Jesus was the son of God or not (personally I believe he was), his teachings are still pretty much the best way to live. Nobody wants to be lied to. Why don't we stopped lying (like he said)? None of us wanted to be hated. Why don't we stop hating (like he said)? Catching on yet?

    January 6, 2013 at 3:06 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Everyone who ever asked "Does this outfit make me look fat?" wants to be lied to.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:07 pm |
    • Christians = Gullible people

      Gullible, brainwashed adults who still believe in fairytales (like yourself) deserve to be hated.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
    • Jesus Christ

      I'm not son of god. I'm human being like you. I helped old lady cross road, fed people, gave them inspiration, and tell night time story to children. Then sudden people called me god then which caught Pontius Pilate's attention then arrested me and died on cross. Those people drive me to death.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
    • BoogerFree

      "Gullible, brainwashed adults who still believe in fairytales (like yourself) deserve to be hated."??? Wow, it must really really suck being you.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:22 pm |
    • Rambo

      All these and more & better preaching were in religions prior to Christianity.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:23 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @Christians = Gullible people
      "Gullible, brainwashed adults who still believe in fairytales (like yourself) deserve to be hated."

      I've got to agree with BoogerFree on this...you live in a very sad and miserable world. If you think brainwashed people (as you call them) deserve to be hated, I'm going to guess you think the poor, the abused and the mentally retarded deserve hatred too? Pathetic. And no, I don't believe in a god, but I'm not full of crazy hatred either.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:30 pm |
    • End Religion

      "his teachings are still pretty much the best way to live"

      Teachings like these?
      • "I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man. She must be quiet." (1 Timothy 2:12)
      • "Go, now, attack Amalek, and deal with him and all that he has under the ban. Do not spare him, but kill men and women, children and infants, oxen and sheep, camels and asses." (1 Samuel 15:3)
      • "You shall not let a sorceress live." (Exodus 22:18)
      • "Happy those who seize your children and smash them against a rock." (Psalm 137:9)
      • "When the men would not listen to his host, the husband seized his concubine and thrust her outside to them. They had relations with her and abused her all night until the following dawn, when they let her go. Then at daybreak the woman came and collapsed at the entrance of the house in which her husband was a guest, where she lay until the morning. When her husband rose that day and opened the door of the house to start out again on his journey, there lay the woman, his concubine, at the entrance of the house with her hands on the threshold. He said to her, 'Come, let us go'; but there was no answer. So the man placed her on an ass and started out again for home." (Judges 19:25-28)
      • "And the males likewise gave up natural relations with females and burned with lust for one another. Males did shameful things with males and thus received in their own persons the due penalty for their perversity." (Romans 1:27)
      • "Jephthah made a vow to the Lord. 'If you deliver the Ammonites into my power,' he said, 'whoever comes out of the doors of my house to meet me when I return in triumph from the Ammonites shall belong to the Lord. I shall offer him up as a holocaust.' ... When Jephthah returned to his house in Mizpah, it was his daughter who came forth, playing the tambourines and dancing. She was an only child: he had neither son nor daughter besides her. When he saw her, he rent his garments and said, 'Alas, daughter, you have struck me down and brought calamity upon me. For I have made a vow to the Lord and I cannot retract'." (Judges 11:30-1, 34-5)
      • "Then God said: 'Take your son Isaac, your only one, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah. There you shall offer him up as a holocaust on a height that I will point out to you'."(Genesis 22:2)
      • "Wives should be subordinate to their husbands as to the Lord." (Ephesians 5:22)
      • "Slaves, be subject to your masters with all reverence, not only to those who are good and equitable but also to those who are perverse." (1 Peter 2:18)
      • "If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them." (Leviticus 20:13)

      January 6, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
    • Christians != Gullible People

      In America, we celebrate diversity, praise the Dalai Lama, honor the customs of the Hindi, do our best to not antagonize Muslims, and make a stand against terrorism and hate crimes. But, we find it ok to hate people for their beliefs if it happens to be in Christ. Great nation we live in!

      January 6, 2013 at 3:40 pm |
    • End Religion

      there's no hate for christians, from my perspective. I'm hoping that through the church's hypocrisy you will realize it's all bunk. It's scary for you, I know. I've seen enough video from people who finally figure it out, pastors even, who realized it was all a fraud, and many relate the panic and/or fear when they initially realize it because they still cling to guilt about hell, or they are afraid to lose family and friends, etc. But they not only survive but often then help others to learn the truth about all religion: it's all a fraud.

      You do not need religion or a god to worship in order to be a good person. You will stay the person you are, you'll just be free from the trappings of the faith. it may take some time to get rid of the fear of hell if you have been heavily indoctrinated, but it will pass.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:47 pm |
  15. JustSaying

    "My Take: Jesus was dirtier than you think". LOL, im just waiting for the article that says "Jesus was blacker then you think". Yes, lets just keep ignoring that little part western world.

    January 6, 2013 at 3:02 pm |
    • Saraswati

      I don't think many people today think Jesus looked like a pale Norwegian. Where are you hanging out that you find people who still believe that?

      January 6, 2013 at 3:08 pm |
    • Perry Keener

      If you're really a believer skin color wouldn't matter. You honestly think the only people saved and going to heaven are all just one race? No, he died for all. Again, Jesus is my Savior and that's all that matters, all these other little mundane things bore me.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:23 pm |
  16. Correctlycenter

    Those who will want to outlaw the LORD God Almighty want to become "god".

    January 6, 2013 at 3:01 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Imaginary and mythical beings can't be outlawed, so no body is trying, so you're an idiot.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:03 pm |
    • End Religion

      lol...

      January 6, 2013 at 5:06 pm |
  17. Rich

    You were also raised to believe in Santa, the Easter bunny, the tooth fairy, etc. But you figured out when you got older those arnt real. But Our heavenly father is more real and Jesus is most real because the love they have for us!! Don't be mad confused or upset you gave your money away, I'm sure it was for a good cause and if you feel cheated giving it away to church, donate it to a charity where you know it will be passed to the poor. I pray for along others that you gain more knowledge in your religion. I'm catholic and I'm still learning about it, its a beautiful religion most people reject because of the lack of knowledge they know about it. All of our Jesus is a Loving Jesus he actually doesn't care what religion you are as long as you live accordingly to His and His fathers will and are pure of heart. It's sad though how a Lot of religions despise us catholics say our religion is wrong and we are all going to Hell. First if you are of god why do you judge US and condemn us to Hell, who are you to judge and there for you are not living with Jesus. Please just do your knowledge and love one another. Love you Tim god bless you and all of your family!!

    January 6, 2013 at 3:00 pm |
    • dreamer96

      Maybe the answer is they all live in side those that believe in them....after all did your parent tell you Santa was real and then go buy the magic presents for Christmas morning...

      January 6, 2013 at 3:03 pm |
    • Segata

      I think that articles like these lend a sense of realism and perspective to a religious figure. I would not consider it sacrilege. Jesus was born. He lived. He died. He returned. The details in between can be interesting not only in the lessons he taught but how he lived. I would not find it disconcerting if Jesus got sick, was dirty, or even had a wife. Why would he not live a normal human existence, setting an example for his followers? It is much easier to relate to such a leader, versus a mythological being that is perfect when it appears amongst man, fostering alienation (like the Greco-Roman pantheon)?

      January 6, 2013 at 4:24 pm |
  18. inspiration

    Was Jesus gay?

    January 6, 2013 at 2:57 pm |
    • dreamer96

      Well he was a happy person...Funny there are a dozen different meaning to the word Gay used in History...

      January 6, 2013 at 2:58 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Presumably a lot of people who shunned the normal lifestyle of marriage were gay, but certainly many were not. I don't think that's an answer we'll ever know as very little real evidence survives of the lives of the prophets at that time.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:00 pm |
  19. dreamer96

    One of my favorite questions to an Atheist Scientist is Why do we use Imaginary Numbers?...We need them to solve math problems but can not really explain why...so is that proof of another dimension or even more to this world we can not explain?

    January 6, 2013 at 2:56 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Take a number theory class. This isn't rocket science but something you cover as a college freshman.

      January 6, 2013 at 2:58 pm |
    • dreamer96

      Saraswati

      Funny I was a DOD Avionics Analyst and I still wonder about the reason giving in College for many things....

      January 6, 2013 at 3:01 pm |
    • Bet

      Judging from your posts, it's not difficult to see why you "still wonder about the reason giving in College for many things...."

      You can't even write a cogent, grammatically correct, non-randomly capitalized, properly spelled sentence. It's not surprising that you don't understand math theory.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:08 pm |
    • Mr.C

      all numbers are imaginary. but you apparently can't figure out that the labels we use to classify groups of thoughts and ideas are just that; labels.

      try actually thinking next tiime.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
    • SixDegrees

      I'm not sure what an avionics analyst does, but it sounds a lot like calling the kid who pumps your gas a petroleum transfer engineer. Does it involve hosing out the johns after a flight?

      Complex numbers are a logical extension to the real numbers you may have learned about in high school; in fact, they are often introduced in high school, and are certainly covered in freshman college mathematics courses, because they appear on a regular basis in all sorts of physical systems. There's nothing "imaginary" about them, nor are they particularly mysterious; they are manipulated just like any number.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
    • dreamer96

      Bet

      I know what you mean ...and yet I solved problems the other Engineers had not been able to do for over 20 years , they had and entire branch of mathematicians that created new algorithms to solve a problem they could not see,..but I did, and was nominated for a National Science and Engineering award.....Life is strange in that way...

      January 6, 2013 at 3:21 pm |
    • Saraswati

      @dreamer96, A lot of engineers don't like or have any interest in number theory. I remember in college not only the engineers, but many of the applied physics majors complained that number theory was a required prerequisite, since it is as close to philosophy as it is to math. Many colleges buckle and don't require it at all, so I know for a fact you can get a PhD in engineering without having done any number theory at all. Have you actually taken any number theory or just done applied math?

      January 6, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
    • dreamer96

      Saraswati

      I took a lot of number theory....and I also like to twist questions around and see how people respond...
      Engineers and mathematicians, and Physics majors and Philosophy majors all look at the same world, but see things differently...So I was having some fun.....

      January 6, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
    • dreamer96

      Personally I find anti-matter interesting since it is just matter where the orbital spin is opposite from what we call normal matter...and when matter and anti-matter collide....only pure energy is made...no left over matter...100's creation of energy...Is that not interesting or what??

      January 6, 2013 at 3:35 pm |
    • Saraswati

      Well, dreamer, I'm at a loss then. I've never seen anyone have a problem explaining imaginary numbers so you must be talking to some people who are just ignorant in that area. Even so, I don't see it as relevant to the existence of God.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:40 pm |
    • dreamer96

      Saraswati

      Well is was to see the responds I would get...Thank you for not disappointing me...

      January 6, 2013 at 3:45 pm |
  20. Jim

    Same o'l, same o'l. Jesus was just like us, because he was just like us. Read the scriptures in the original Hebrew and Greek Interlinear for a big surprise. Jesus was not God incarnate, anymore than you and I are, which all are because only God exists. Too existenctial for you? Doubter have one more year to protest, then proof arrives. Jesus has walked this earth in continuous incarnations, and is here now. Jesus has served his Father in many ways throughout history. Why do you think Isaiah says: The Lord has anointed me." Jesus had been Isaiah. But for now you ae blind. In one year light arrives to give you sight.

    January 6, 2013 at 2:56 pm |
    • End Religion

      Until I see your extraordinary, tested and peer-reviewed proof of God, proof of every absurd assertion in the bible and proof of Jesus, it is entirely a fraud.

      The abrahamic god does not exist. That, plus zero independent proof for jeebus means his "son" never existed either. The christian church itself admits the bible is a fraud. On 2013-01-05 anglicans allowed gay priests to become bishops when Leviticus 20:13 (the supposed word of an inerrant god) clearly advocates killing gays. If the fact your bible advocates such killing isn't enough to keep you away, perhaps its hypocrisy will?

      Religion is nothing but a pathetic, incongruous shell game that exists now only to sustain the power of its top echelon, to keep controlling sheep and to keep bringing the tithes in.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:00 pm |
    • Saraswati

      The problem with the claim that "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence" is that what count as "extraordinary claims" will always be a matter of opinion. Ultimately is is no different than the appeal to "common sense"...something anyone can use whatever their position.

      January 6, 2013 at 3:06 pm |
    • End Religion

      @sara: thx. I don't think I'm asking much. Just the proof that unproven, made-up nonsense is real.

      January 6, 2013 at 4:03 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.