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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.

'Jesus Wife' fragment gets more testing, delays article

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 • My Take

soundoff (7,741 Responses)
  1. Bob

    Luke was a brilliant, meticulous historian who was concerned with accuracy. The Holy Spirit used these qualities to produce this masterpiece of literature. Luke speaks of the previous events in John's life which prepared him to receive and proclaim God's Word. He refers to John not as 'the Baptist' but as Zechariah's son. This is to remind his readers of Zechariah's Holy Spirit- inspired prophecy which describes both Jesus' and John's ministries (1:67-79). In this prophecy as well as in the one given by the angel (1:13-17), John is described as the Holy Spirit-empowered prophet of the Most High who would lead the people to repentance for the forgiveness of sins and prepare them for the coming Savior. Like Matthew and Mark, Luke tells us that John began his ministry in the wilderness. Not only is this a historical note, it also has prophetic importance because of the quote from Isaiah in Luke 3:4-6. John now takes on the role of the courier of the King. In ancient days when the king would travel, a courier would go days before the king to make sure the roads were in good repair and the people ready to receive the king.

    The application for us is that the preparation He insists on is of the heart and life. There is laid on every one of us the duty to make a life fit for the King to see.

    Coming out of the wilderness, John preached his message in the area around the Jordan River. Like Mark, Luke states that John was "preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins." To "preach a baptism" emphasizes the content of the message rather than the rite itself. Luke shows that God authorized John's baptism as a means of asking for and receiving forgiveness. Jesus Himself confirms John's baptism.

    January 16, 2013 at 6:19 pm |
  2. Science

    This doc-umentary states it has the smoking gun. Jan 9 2013
    PBS Nova Decoding Neanderthals doc-umentary

    January 16, 2013 at 7:49 am |
  3. Buster

    Sorry, there is no free lunch for the atheists.

    January 15, 2013 at 7:06 pm |
    • ed

      Let me ask you something, Buster. When you walk outside and turn and look in every direction, is there just a a lot of gorgeous corn in front of you? Be honest now.

      January 15, 2013 at 9:20 pm |
    • Buster

      Yes, because Jesus is the bread of life, and I have free will to continually feast on God's word.

      January 16, 2013 at 11:13 am |
  4. I don't know why

    This article had me pondering...all humans "are" a giant collection of microbes, really. Absolute cleanliness is incompatible with life. There are even microbes living on our eyelashes that are not visible except for the use of a microscope. Face it if you are alive you are covered in germs and always will be.

    January 15, 2013 at 2:40 pm |
    • Really??

      not just covered , but they are everywhere inside you as well. Many of them work with our bodies in a mutually beneficial way. You would not survive if your intestines were not filled with microbes and bacteria breaking down food for you.

      January 15, 2013 at 2:46 pm |
  5. Buster

    Disgusting.

    January 15, 2013 at 12:57 pm |
    • sam stone

      awww, buster brown....having a hissy fit?

      January 15, 2013 at 2:51 pm |
  6. Iron Sharpener

    @End Religion/The Truth/Tom Tom/Hawaiiguest/In santa we trust, you have managed to use " Know one Knows", " your godis evil", "Flawed", "lack of evidence"...even Truth went as far as to speak for me? not one...yes hawaiiguest even you, had provided any poster here with your substanciated evidence disproving Jesus, the Bible, Omni present God. At least Moby said "I don't know, no one know's" while I don't accept his answer, I'll respectfully agree to disagree. What makes this right, true to me? it was prayer & faith, and I know that explanation is crazy to some..ok., and why Chritianity....I believe in the trinity, and I believe Jesus's red words. I never entertained this would be an easy walk, matter of fact it took me 40 years to walk. Why not Muslim/Jew/Buhda...they don't believe Jesus was the Messiah.. I do. He preached Love, he waits, he's merciful. If you bring up hell and how could he, read about it...your not afraid of a book you have no belief in anyway, it'll be a 2 nighter for you...maybe 3? I wanted to say, and yes..I'm done here(until I read another crazy CNN blog) and I wish you well, a great life.! No kidding....thanks.

    January 15, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
    • Smithsonian

      "the Bible,"

      The stories found in the Book of Genesis, Chapter 1-12, such as the flood story, the record is quite different: the time period under consideration is much more ancient. The factual bases of the stories are hidden from our view archaeologically. The stories remain a part of folk traditions and were included in the Bible to illustrate and explain theological ideas such as: Where did humans come from? If humans were created by God (who is perfect and good), how did evil among them come to be? If we are all related as children of God, why do we speak different languages? It must be remembered that the Bible is primarily a book of religion, a guide to faith. it was not a book of history, poetry, economics, or science. It contains all sorts of literary genre, which are used to teach about the relationship between God and mankind. Even biblical history is edited history: events were chosen to illustrate the central theme of the Bible. The Biblical writers did not pretend they were giving a complete history; instead they constantly refer us to other sources for full historical details, sources such as "The Annals of the Kings of Judah" (or Israel).

      It is therefore not possible to try to "prove" the Bible by means of checking its historical or scientific accuracy. The only "proof" to which it can be subjected is this: Does it correctly portray the God-human relationship? In the best analysis, the Bible is a religious book, not an historical document.

      January 15, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
    • Ol' Yeller

      @Iron Sharpener, I would think that someone who has the personal relationship with Jesus Christ that you claim to have, you would not be so angry and accusatory of your brothers on here. I know some mock you and push your buttons, but were you to have the relationship you claim, this would not bother you at all. I seriously doubt any true Christians would even bother reading a story like this and certainly not taking the time to post your defensive statements of your indefensible postion. It is not Atheists jobs to disprove God. True Atheists are just the opposite of Theists. No Theist has ever proven God exsists, they just believe. No Atheist can disprove God, they just don't beleive. I tend to fall on the side of Atheist as I find it easeir to believe there is no God... as opposed to your position of... there is a God and it is the one I believe in and not those other guys. All Muslims, Buhddists, Christians, etc... are Theists. You are confusing people who don't believe with being Anti Christian per se', when in actuality, Athesist's just don't believe what you do. Can't you at least respect that?
      I don't think you can because you have a lot of work to do to have that the relationship with Christ you claim... otherrwise you'd know the REAL lesson of Jesus was forgiveness. That's it. Nothing else... Forgiveness.
      Start forgiving man... then you may get to where you aspire to be.

      January 15, 2013 at 2:52 pm |
    • End Religion

      @NotSoSharpener: all religion is a fraud. Your jeebus and god never existed. You come back and let us know when you have proof to the contrary, dweeb.

      January 15, 2013 at 7:56 pm |
  7. Buster

    Just follow the golden rule.

    January 15, 2013 at 11:53 am |
    • End Religion

      ... the golden rule being "don't believe everything you read".

      January 15, 2013 at 7:57 pm |
    • Buster

      No, that's not the golden rule.

      January 15, 2013 at 9:15 pm |
  8. Paul

    Perfect example of no morals among atheists not to mention how dumb

    January 15, 2013 at 10:21 am |
    • If you can't write a sentence, why should anyone listen?

      Perhaps you'd like to try fifth grade over again, Paul?

      January 15, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
    • sam stone

      paulie: still dreaming about doing that lewinsky thing on jeebus?

      January 15, 2013 at 2:53 pm |
  9. Tom

    God’s promises were never meant to be thrown aside as waste paper; he intended that they should be used. God’s gold is not miser’s money, but is minted to be traded with. Nothing pleases our Lord better than to see his promises put in circulation; he loves to see his children bring them up to him, and say, “Lord, do as thou hast said.” We glorify God when we plead his promises. Do you think that God will be any the poorer for giving you the riches he has promised? Do you dream that he will be any the less holy for giving holiness to you? Do you imagine he will be any the less pure for washing you from your sins? He has said “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” Faith lays hold upon the promise of pardon, and it does not delay, saying, “This is a precious promise, I wonder if it be true?” but it goes straight to the throne with it, and pleads, “Lord, here is the promise, ‘Do as thou hast said.’” Our Lord replies, “Be it unto thee even as thou wilt.” When a Christian grasps a promise, if he does not take it to God, he dishonours him; but when he hastens to the throne of grace, and cries, “Lord, I have nothing to recommend me but this, ‘Thou hast said it;’“ then his desire shall be granted. Our heavenly Banker delights to cash his own notes. Never let the promise rust. Draw the word of promise out of its scabbard, and use it with holy violence. Think not that God will be troubled by your importunately reminding him of his promises. He loves to hear the loud outcries of needy souls. It is his delight to bestow favours. He is more ready to hear than you are to ask. The sun is not weary of shining, nor the fountain of flowing. It is God’s nature to keep his promises; therefore go at once to the throne with “Do as thou hast said.”

    January 15, 2013 at 6:43 am |
    • Tom Tom the pipers son

      Tom Tom the pipers son

      Leviticus 18:22 (KJ21) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 Thou shalt not lie with mankind as with womankind: it is abomination.
      Leviticus 18:22 (ASV) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.
      Leviticus 18:22 (AMP) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 You shall not lie with a man as with a woman; it is an abomination.
      Leviticus 18:22 (CEB) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 You must not have s intercourse with a man as you would with a woman; it is a detestable practice.
      Leviticus 18:22 (CJB) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      (RY: iv, LY: vii) 22 “‘You are not to go to bed with a man as with a woman; it is an abomination.
      Leviticus 18:22 (CEV) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 It is disgusting for a man to have s- .ex with another man.
      Leviticus 18:22 (DARBY) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 And thou shalt not lie with mankind as one lieth with a woman: it is an abomination.
      Leviticus 18:22 (DRA) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 Thou shalt not lie with mankind as with womankind, because it is an abomination.
      Leviticus 18:22 (ERV) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 “Men, you must not have s relations with another man as with a woman. That is a terrible sin!
      Leviticus 18:22 (ESV) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination.
      Leviticus 18:22 (ESVUK) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination.
      Leviticus 18:22 (GW) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 Never have inter-.course with a man as with a woman. It is disgusting.
      Leviticus 18:22 (GNT) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 You are not to sleep with a man as with a woman; it is detestable.
      Leviticus 18:22 (KJV) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.
      Leviticus 18:22 (LEB) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 And you shall not lie with a male as lying with a woman; that is a detestable thing.
      Leviticus 18:22 (MSG) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 "Don't have s- ex with a man as one does with a woman. That is abhorrent.
      Leviticus 18:22 (NASB) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination.
      Leviticus 18:22 (NCV) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 " 'You must not have s relations with a man as you would a woman. That is a hateful sin.
      Leviticus 18:22 (NIRV) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 " 'Do not have s- ex with a man as you would have x with a woman. I hate that.
      Leviticus 18:22 (NIV) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 “‘Do not have s relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.
      Leviticus 18:22 (NIV1984) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 “‘Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable.
      Leviticus 18:22 (NIVUK) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 ‘“Do not have s relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.
      Leviticus 18:22 (NKJV) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 You shall not lie with a male as with a woman. It is an abomination.
      Leviticus 18:22 (NLV) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman. It is a sinful thing.
      Leviticus 18:22 (NLT) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 “Do not practice h0m0, having s- ex with another man as with a woman. It is a detestable sin.
      Leviticus 18:22 (TNIV) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 “‘Do not have se relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.
      Leviticus 18:22 (WYC) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 Thou shalt not be meddled, [(or) mingled,] with a man, by lechery of a woman, for it is abomination. (Thou shalt not be mixed together with a man, like in fleshly coupling with a woman, for it is an abomination.)
      Leviticus 18:22 (YLT) | In Context | Whole Chapter

      22 `And with a male thou dost not lie as one lieth with a woman; abomination it [is].
      .
      .
      .
      .
      .
      ..
      .
      .
      .
      .
      .

      January 15, 2013 at 6:54 am |
    • sam stone

      tom: you have NO authority to speak for god

      January 15, 2013 at 7:55 am |
    • lol??

      Bob or Douglas stealing TTPS's handle.

      January 15, 2013 at 8:22 am |
    • End Religion

      there's a reason the "crazy religious person" archetype exists.

      January 15, 2013 at 8:00 pm |


  10. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=6ULdaSrYGLQ

    261 Ministers Proclamation

    As Christian clergy we proclaim: the Good News concerning Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) persons and publicly apologize where we have been silent. As disciples of Jesus, who assures us that the truth sets us free, we recognize that the debate is over. The verdict is in. Homosexuality is not a sickness, not a choice, and not a sin. We find no rational biblical or theological basis to condemn or deny the rights of any person based on sexual orientation. Silence by many has allowed political and religious rhetoric to monopolize public perception, creating the impression that there is only one Christian perspective on this issue. Yet we recognize and celebrate that we are far from alone, as Christians, in affirming that LGBT persons are distinctive, holy, and precious gifts to all who struggle to become the family of God.

    In repentance and obedience to the Holy Spirit, we stand in solidarity as those who are committed to work and pray for full acceptance and inclusion of LGBT persons in our churches and in our world. We lament that LGBT persons are condemned and excluded by individuals and institutions, political and religious, who claim to be speaking the truth of Christian teaching. This leads directly and indirectly to intolerance, discrimination, suffering, and even death. The Holy Spirit compels us:

    -to affirm that the essence of Christian life is not focused on sexual orientation, but how one lives by grace in relationship with God, with compassion toward humanity;

    –to embrace the full inclusion of our LGBT brothers and sisters in all areas of church life, including leadership;

    –to declare that the violence must stop. Christ’s love moves us to work for the healing of wounded souls who are victims of abuse often propagated in the name of Christ;

    –to celebrate the prophetic witness of all people who have refused to let the voice of intolerance and violence speak for Christianity, especially LGBT persons, who have met hatred with love;

    Therefore we call for an end to all religious and civil discrimination against any person based on sexual orientation and gender identity and expression. All laws must include and protect the freedoms, rights, and equal legal standing of all persons, in and outside the church.

    January 15, 2013 at 12:38 am |
  11. xbjllb

    I can't believe you wrote this. After a bout with intestinal flu where I really wanted to die, I wondered myself if Jesus ever had to endure such torture. But then I remembered probably what He experienced leading up to the crucifixion probably would trump anything else a human being could experience. I like Scorsese's Jesus for much of the same reason; His humanity (although the real Jesus hopefully wasn't quite so clueless.) Jesus lived and died horrifically, that much we can know for sure; the rest depends upon faith. And I don't believe people don't get last chances after death either; the Creeds tell us He descended into Hell for three of our days; what would He have been doing there except trying to get everyone He could out. The only people left would rather be there than recognize, acknowledge, and beg forgiveness for their own sin.

    January 15, 2013 at 12:17 am |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Maybe he and Satan were involved in a relationship and Satan got mad because Jesus was seeing twelve other guys. Seriously though, do you actually believe nobody else in the history of humanity has suffered as much as Jesus? There are likely people right now suffering a great deal more. Also, Jesus was likely comforted by his delusions, something most torture victims don't have.

      January 15, 2013 at 12:36 am |
  12. Rational Libertarian

    Hate crime laws are just white guilt. It's the exact same thing with affirmative action. Their hearts weren't in the right place, they just wanted to say "Hey, look at me. I'm not racist and I'll prove it by affording preferential treatment to non whites, particularly black people because of y'know, the whole slavery thing. Coincidentally, my great, great, great grandfather was an abolitionist." It's complete BS.

    January 14, 2013 at 11:26 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Wrong thread.

      January 14, 2013 at 11:28 pm |
  13. Rational Libertarian

    Test

    January 14, 2013 at 11:13 pm |
  14. Bob

    January 14, 2013 at 8:02 pm |
    • Gir

      And here see another symptom of this brain virus named religion: an irrational fear of death.

      January 14, 2013 at 8:07 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      January 14, 2013 at 8:17 pm |
    • The Truth

      I wonder what the "survivor" numbers would be if they included all the people around the world who die from religious conflicts or supposed "honor" killings...

      January 14, 2013 at 9:04 pm |
    • ed

      Wow. bob manged to find a video of someone more stupid than he. One of the stupidest arguments against atheism is the one that only believers has a sense of something greater than one's self.

      January 14, 2013 at 11:31 pm |
    • ed

      I guess that should be "stupid than him"

      January 14, 2013 at 11:33 pm |
  15. Iron Sharpener

    Moby......I think it's a cop out to just say "big invisible sky wizard...." and put your stamp on honest opinion as just admitting to ourselves we don't know. I know, I know and it took me 40 years to get there. I know because of many reasons. I know I didn't know how to read until I was taught, I didn't know how to write, perform math, eat...ect. The odd thing to you is I believe in a perfect almighty God, who created, and he gave us choice & sent a savior. I can't look around & see as many miracles, life changing events that I have seen & not believe. I had a friend who ran a humvie over a mine field(unknown at the time he did it) and after passing it it blew. I had a friend who was a non believer that had cancer, he asked us to pray, we did, he is still alive. I have many reasons, I don't expect everyone to be on board because I am, I expect God to do his thing & when the time is "perfect" it'll be right for he or she. I wish nothing but the best, and contrary to hawaiiguest's opinion of me, I generally lead a productive life and try and do what I can for whomever I come into contact with. I'm not trying to shove it down anyones throat, but I don't just back down from my beliefs. I know you heard this a time or two, I'd rather believe & be wrong, than not believe and be wrong. You might say I sound as if I fear God...you'd be right. But in conclusion, it's not debatable or unfounded as ha9001 puts it, I have a reason, and Jesus revealed it when I asked....simple as that..to me. take care....

    January 14, 2013 at 7:18 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      The honest answer, when you don't know, is to state exactly that. What happens when we die? "Don't know." How did there happen to be something rather than nothing? "Don't know."

      We don't know, and so it's stupid to say that we do and that it was essentially some big invisible guy who can't be verified by any measurement whatsoever and that he did it with an energetic process too far beyond our thinking to understand. That's just silly.

      God's existence is irrelevant because of his level of invisibility and undetectability. If you can't detect the thing with measurement to know whether it exists or not, then what's the difference if it does exist? Your god either doesn't exist or wants everyone to believe he doesn't exist; after all, he did a fine job making math and chemistry self-evident and completely verifiable so that every single person on the planet must perform chemisry the exact same way, be they muslim terrorist or christian snake handler.

      January 14, 2013 at 7:24 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Iron

      So I challenge your assertions, point out flawed questions, and all of a sudden I don't think you lead a productive life? By the way, your appeal to Pascals Wager tends to conveniently ignore the 38,000 different denominations within christianity alone, not to mention all the other religions of the world.

      January 14, 2013 at 7:25 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      So you say we should say we don't know when we don't know (which is true) but then go on to basically say 'it's all 'cause of magic". Now where's the cop out?

      January 14, 2013 at 7:27 pm |
    • 72

      Iron Sharpener,

      Maybe Allah will give you credit for tenaciousness and will let you be one of those recyclable virgins for eternity for his really precious martyrs!

      January 14, 2013 at 7:30 pm |
    • Bob

      yup they didn't detect the Higgs either so I guess that doesn't exist either.

      January 14, 2013 at 7:30 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      It doesn't matter whether or not the Higgs exists. What matters is that something is functioning as the Higgs is said to function. Whatever is functioning in that way, is what we are trying to discover. That's the goal, not the Higgs. If it turns out that the Higgs doesn't exist then it will be wonderful news to find that out because it will mean that our knowledge of science has INCREASED with that new knowledge.

      When somebody says my eternity is in jeopardy over my belief in the Higgs, or that laws should be in place because of the Higgs, you'll see me treating that Higgs-religion just like I treat other religions.

      January 14, 2013 at 7:34 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      By Higgs do you mean Higg's Boson, because yes they did find it and it could potentially be the greatest scientific discovery thus far?

      January 14, 2013 at 7:43 pm |
    • Bob

      So moby how do you feel about the new hate crime laws then

      January 14, 2013 at 7:50 pm |
    • Bob

      Yes the Higgs Boson but they found the trail not the actual Higgs.

      January 14, 2013 at 7:51 pm |
    • Bob

      Also Moby I thought you didn't believe in eternity?

      January 14, 2013 at 7:53 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Cern are still in the data analysis stage and probably will be for the next few years but it seems fairly certain from press releases that they've found Higg's Boson. Apparently they are planning to make a definitive statement of its existence at a press conference in March, something I am mightily excited about.

      January 14, 2013 at 7:56 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      My two cents

      Hate crime laws are total BS.

      January 14, 2013 at 7:57 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Rational Libertarian

      I would say for the most part, yes hate crime laws are pretty BS. Although there are cases where the intent behind a crime is not only to injure, or kill, but to send a message to an entire group of people, as well as terrorize, degrade, or discourage. America has gotten perhaps a little to PC, but I would say there should be some distinction.

      January 14, 2013 at 8:01 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      In my eyes a crime is a crime, regardless of motivation and hate crime laws urinate all over "All men are created equal".

      January 14, 2013 at 8:04 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Rational

      Well, I see where that might be an issue, but I think there is still some validity behind the concept of hate crimes.

      January 14, 2013 at 8:17 pm |
    • Bob

      Well in the hate crime laws there is also restriction of speech and puts one class of citizen above another what about that? Plus it has nothing to do with religion but a orientation.

      January 14, 2013 at 8:26 pm |
    • Gir

      "Evolution explains many things unfortunately there was not enough time in 4.5 billion years for random chance to result in a humanoid."

      Says who? Which statistical model have you employed here to reach that conclusion, and why is it valid?

      What amazes me is that even the abiogenesis folks have been able to posit valid conditions for their hypothesis and have performed experiments of the highest quality that have produced overwhelming results, yet you creationists have not been able to present a SINGLE testable hypothesis for your claims. Yet you have the gall to cross your arms, stare at the huge body of empirical evidence, and bleat, "It's improbable," with nothing but logically unsound arguments from incredulity to back you up.

      January 14, 2013 at 8:29 pm |
    • The Truth

      Yes, any additional penalties for "hate crimes" should be done away with when you think a crime is a crime regardless of their reason. However, intent is almost always used in this country in some form when a crime is committed. Most obvious is the discretion in sentencing where if a crime has a State penalty of 10 to 15 years and it's up to the judge or jury as to the actual sentence handed down then the intent of the crime is often debated and used in the decision. In fact intent is used even in deciding what to charge the perpetrator with in the first place as to whether it was premeditated or in the heat of the moment, murder or manslaughter. It is also looked at when releasing prisoners on parole. A person who shot someone just because they were black might be considered more of a risk in society then a man who shot his wife because she cheated on him, wouldn't you think? So you might want additional assurance from the violent racist that he is reformed then from the guy who may have just snapped, don't you think? It's not a perfect system by any means, but I think those who have added those hate crime penalties had their hearts in the right place, that of condemning those who attack someone they don't even know based upon some deep seated prejudice and saying to the world that behavior s unacceptable in civilized society.

      January 14, 2013 at 8:55 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Hate crime laws are just white guilt. It's the exact same thing with affirmative action. Their hearts weren't in the right place, they just wanted to say "Hey, look at me. I'm not racist and I'll prove it by affording preferential treatment to non whites, particularly black people because of y'know, the whole slavery thing. Coincidentally, my great, great, great grandfather was an abolitionist." It's complete BS.

      January 14, 2013 at 11:27 pm |
  16. Lazarus

    An opinion is a statement represented by that individual perspective of life. It is a choice of what we believe with what evidence is presented. Jesus and all of God's anomolies have a great deal of mixture of (choice and Faith). Depending on how the heart is or the daily habits. Jesus is The perfect example of how us as humans should live with respect of our heart's virtues and attributes. The Only being born without Sin. The only being who's prayer can reach God unblemished and direct.

    January 14, 2013 at 6:59 pm |
    • Beth

      Lazarus, how about you try to present some of your "evidence"? So far, no Christian here has been able to present any, of any degree of validity.

      January 14, 2013 at 7:03 pm |
    • Gir

      Individual opinions are nice and all, but you have to remember to that this is a public forum. Only empirical evidence that we can ALL experience and confirm is welcome here. It is downright cruel to interrupt our collective silence with grand ideas of gods and talking donkeys, only to present personal experience or "divine" feelings in your "heart," "gut," "spirit" or wherever to back them up. It is a sign of a deep-rooted disrespect for your fellow man if you think those are acceptable forms of evidence.

      January 14, 2013 at 8:20 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Second what Gir said.

      January 15, 2013 at 12:38 am |
  17. Lazarus

    An opinion is a statement represented by that individual perspective of life. It is a choice of what we believe with what evidence is presented. Jesus and all of God's anomolies have a great deal of mixture of (choice and Faith). Depending on how the heart is or the daily habits. Jesus is The perfect example of how us as humans should live with respect of our heart, virtues and attributes

    January 14, 2013 at 6:52 pm |
    • End Religion

      jesus is a great myth, nothing more. Time to stop sucking your thumb.

      January 14, 2013 at 10:11 pm |
  18. Iron Sharpener

    Ok Moby.... so ....where then did we come from from the beginning of it all...what started human life, animal life, insect, plant..I miss anything? Just try to give me your version.

    January 14, 2013 at 6:39 pm |
    • Pee Wee

      No one knows.. he he...

      January 14, 2013 at 6:44 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      We don't know. Nobody does. That's the answer. You know, the honest one, when you don't know.

      January 14, 2013 at 6:44 pm |
  19. Iron Sharpener

    Hawaiiguest/others, "unfounded", " your book", "where's the evidence", what? hawaiiguest " ...I don't like you" ?? what? why? why would you or wouldn't you? lmao... I have given many reasons and examples of what I believe, what I follow, where I get my beliefs from, and how I believe man was created. What have you provided as credible information as to how the human race came to be? I missed that part....

    January 14, 2013 at 5:59 pm |
    • Iron Sharpener

      I believe God created man in his image, meaning with a body of flesh and bone, and then he laid out a game plan as to the best way to lead a fruit bearing life. Why...I don't know why, maybe he was bored? maybe that will never be understood? It's one of those things science, math, or opinions will never fully corroborate. I mean of all the intricacy involved in the human DNA/makeup....nervous system, spinal column, blood types, color, every area of individualistic reference..what could make something like that? can you tell me what you think made man?

      January 14, 2013 at 6:10 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Iron

      So your evidence is "you don't put anything forward, therefore god"? If that is your standard to believe something, then why don't you believe every single other religion out there. Where is your evidence that reincarnation didn't happen, where is your evidence that elves don't exist. Where is your evidence that everything wasn't created yesterday with all memories, knowledge, etc. already in place? That's just demonstrably insane.

      January 14, 2013 at 6:17 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Evolution made man, simple as that. Consult an evolutionary biologist for further information.

      January 14, 2013 at 6:19 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Iron

      "what could make something like that? can you tell me what you think made man?"
      Your question presupposes what you are trying to prove, that's called Begging the question.
      The question "How did life come about" is a question that does not try to pidgeon hole your pet belief in there from the beginning, and can be built upon in an objective way. Try being honest in your questions first, then maybe we could get somewhere in a discussion.

      January 14, 2013 at 6:19 pm |
    • hal 9001

      I'm sorry, "Iron Sharpener", but all of your posts to date have been unfounded. Using my Idiomatic Expression Equivalency module (IEE), the expression that best matches the degree to which your repeated assertions may represent truths is: "EMBARRASSINGLY EPIC FAIL".

      January 14, 2013 at 6:23 pm |
    • Iron Sharpener

      Hawaiiguest..."pidgeon hole..." c'mon man. Iit was a simple request that you tell me your version. Now your side stepping. @ha9001....baseless according to you. I pose the question to you...

      January 14, 2013 at 6:30 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      Iron, So god has a navel? Who was its mother? If the human body were designed by an omniscient and omnipotent being surely it would not have made such a poor job of the laryngeal nerve in mammals, the spine not being optimal for bi-pedal gait, the blind spot caused by the optic nerve, etc. etc. Oh I know you can't know its ways and will, except when preaching to others or when facts are concerned.

      January 14, 2013 at 6:33 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      The correct answer to the big mysteries are "We don't know" not "big invisible sky wizard did it with magic spellzzzz!!!!" Simple, honest, direct, and accurate.

      January 14, 2013 at 6:34 pm |
    • hal 9001

      I'm sorry, "Iron Sharpener", but as an example, "God" is an element of mythology, therefore your assertions are unfounded. 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 14, 2013 at 6:34 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Iron

      How about actually addressing the fallacious and dishonest nature of the question first? Or are you so unable to actually discuss something in an honest way?

      January 14, 2013 at 6:37 pm |
    • Iron Sharpener

      hawaii...I am honest, and I'm trying to get you to tell me in you opinion....best of your knowledge..where we all started. I mean if I planted a seed for a tomato, I'd have tomatoes, if I had the seed to begin with. Where...just answer that. I assure you, I'm not trying to make it an argument. I am interested in another person's ( who doesn't agree with me) view.....

      January 14, 2013 at 6:43 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Iron

      And I'm telling you that the question you asked me is ill formed and presupposes creation. I gave you a way that would make it a more honest and open question, and you have ignored it.

      January 14, 2013 at 6:46 pm |
    • fred

      In Santa we trust
      So you think that if there was God humans would have been made perfect? If you think about what you said what would be perfection………….does it approach God and just fall a hair short……….We know it would be impossible to have two perfect beings in the same space. That being the case you need to argue for some degree of imperfection.
      Got another plan

      January 14, 2013 at 6:49 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      @fred

      Who are you to tell god what's "impossible" and therefore he can't do it?

      January 14, 2013 at 6:50 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      Fred.
      You believers claim that god is all knowing and all powerful, so you'd think it would make a better job of its creation.
      How do we know it would be impossible to have two perfect beings in the same space?
      I don't need another plan – we have evolution which makes much more sense than a supernatural being that no one has seen or spoken to yet somehow believers know what it wants.

      January 14, 2013 at 6:55 pm |
    • fred

      Moby
      Santa
      If there were two all knowing all present perfect beings they would be indistinguishable and occupy the same space and time at all possible points. This would be perfect unity. Like pealing apart God to reveal the Father, Son and Holy Spirit

      January 14, 2013 at 7:08 pm |
    • fred

      Santa
      Evolution explains many things unfortunately there was not enough time in 4.5 billion years for random chance to result in a humanoid. You have a great deal of faith in your unproven origin.

      January 14, 2013 at 7:15 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      fred, evolution is NOT "random chance" and again, who are you to tell god what he can't do? Aren't his ways higher than your ways and his thoughts higher than your thoughts? What if he's got a way to do it that you can't conceive of? You seem rather arrogant to me, telling god what he can and can't do.

      January 14, 2013 at 7:18 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @fred

      Yes, and we should take your word, someone who has shown to have a flawed grasp of even basic scientific concepts, that evolution cannot possibly explain humanity. Right.

      January 14, 2013 at 7:18 pm |
    • Rational Libertarian

      Anybody who believes evolution by natural selection is "random chance" betrays a deep lack of knowledge.

      January 14, 2013 at 7:24 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      fred, And yet DNA and the fossil record show otherwise. Who to believe – the believers who twist everything to fit their bible or the scientists who can repeat results and provide evidence.

      January 14, 2013 at 9:17 pm |
    • The Truth

      " I'm trying to get you to tell me in you opinion....best of your knowledge..where we all started."

      What Iron is trying to get hg to say is "We don't know how it all started, we have many theories based on the evidence we have collected so far, but we just don't know what caused it all yet." And that's when Iron hopes to jump in with "Well I know!!" to be quickly followed with "and the bible says" this "and the bible says" that, all without a shred of actual evidence. It's like building all your arguments based on old blog posts you really liked, "Well HeavenSent posted that it was sunny outside, so regardless of the evidence, that of darkness beyond my windows, I believe it's sunny outside, and you should too."

      Iron Sharpener just proves what the dullest tool in the shed really is... I've never heard of anyone being cut by a sharpener...

      January 14, 2013 at 9:19 pm |
    • End Religion

      fred, you helped prove there is no god. Maybe you should stop arguing for him. It just seems odd you'd continue fighting for what you proved doesn't exist. Almost crazy, even.

      January 14, 2013 at 10:51 pm |
  20. OneInChrist

    "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"

    Amen

    January 14, 2013 at 5:17 pm |
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About this blog

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