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Godless mom strikes a chord with parents
A CNN iReport essay on raising kids without God draws record-breaking number of comments.
January 18th, 2013
06:32 PM ET

Godless mom strikes a chord with parents

By Daphne Sashin, CNN

Deborah Mitchell remembers the time, when her boys were younger, and another mom asked her about her religious beliefs.

Mitchell was raised Catholic but moved away from religion in her early 20s. She told the other mother that she didn’t go to church and didn’t even really believe in God.

Then, she says, the recruiting started.

“She used to call my house and tell me she was praying for me. She’d leave me messages and leave cards in my mailbox with scripture,” Mitchell says. “I do realize that she meant well, but at the same time, I know my views were seen as wrong. I needed to be ‘saved.’”

Mitchell, a mother of two teenagers in Texas who feels “immersed in Christianity,” started a blog about raising her children without religion because she felt frustrated and marginalized. She didn’t want to feel so alone, she says.

This week, she gained a whole new audience and the reassurance that she's not alone. Her essay on CNN iReport, “Why I Raise My Children Without God,” drew 650,000 page views, the second highest for an iReport, and the most comments of any submission on the citizen journalism platform.

It starts:

When my son was around 3 years old, he used to ask me a lot of questions about heaven. Where is it? How do people walk without a body? How will I find you? You know the questions that kids ask.

For over a year, I lied to him and made up stories that I didn’t believe about heaven. Like most parents, I love my child so much that I didn’t want him to be scared. I wanted him to feel safe and loved and full of hope. But the trade-off was that I would have to make stuff up, and I would have to brainwash him into believing stories that didn’t make sense, stories that I didn’t believe either.

Mitchell posted the essay detailing her seven reasons for raising her children without God on CNN iReport because she felt there wasn’t anyone else speaking for women or moms like her. As she sees it, children should learn to do the right things because they will feel better about themselves, not because God is watching. She asks questions like: If there was a good, all-knowing, all-powerful God, why would he allow murders, child abuse and torture?

Lots of people disagreed with her. Tons. They flagged her iReport as inappropriate and criticized CNN for linking to her essay on the CNN.com homepage. But there were plenty of others who wrote thoughtful rebuttals, respectfully disagreeing with Mitchell while not foisting their own beliefs on her. Take, for instance, a Methodist dad, who said faith can be hard to nail down, but “not to avail ourselves of the power of something we don't completely understand is silly.”

Others said Mitchell presented a simplistic view of religion.

“Presentations such as these seem to ignore a substantial percentage of believers - well-educated, compassionate, liberal folk, Christian and non-Christian alike - who, I feel, are able to worship without being blind to the realities of the world, or without lying to their children about their understanding of these complexities,” wrote commenter RMooradian. “I'll be raising my children with God, but I understand those who cannot!”

But Mitchell’s essay also struck a chord with hundreds of like-minded parents raising children in a world where lack of belief puts them in the minority, often even in their own family.

“Thank you for writing this. I agree with everything you say, but I’m not brave enough to tell everyone I know this is how I feel,” a woman who called herself an “agnostic mommy of two in Alabama” posted in the comments. “Thank you for your bravery and letting me know I’m not alone.”

It’s a growing group. One in five Americans is not affiliated with any religion, and that number has grown by 25% in the past five years, according to a survey by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life. Of that group, 88% said they were not looking for religion, although 68% of the unaffiliated said they believe in God. 

Brittany Branyon, an American graduate student and substitute teacher living in Germany, was also compelled to express her thanks to Mitchell. Branyon was raised Southern Baptist in Georgia and Alabama. In high school, when she began to question the theory of creation and befriended gay and lesbian students, she says her mother tried to perform an exorcism.

“She opened all the windows and doors in the house, brought me to the door, held my shoulders and shook me while screaming, ‘Satan, get out of this child!’, ‘Satan, leave this child alone!’.”

After moving away from the South, she and her husband “became more comfortable in our secular ways,” but still take criticism from family members. They are now expecting their first child.

“Though we are elated to welcome our child into the world, we can’t help but dread the religious uproar that is to come from our families,” she wrote in an e-mail.

Such an uproar is familiar to Carol Phillips, a stay-at-home mother in northern Virginia. When she gave birth to her first child, she said her family was shocked that the baby wasn’t baptized. She said her mother-in-law cried and told her the little girl’s soul would not go to heaven.

Then there are the comments from strangers. Last year, Phillips said she and her daughter were at a birthday party when a tornado warning sounded.

“We were all in the basement keeping safe. A little girl was saying baby Jesus will keep us safe. My daughter asked who Jesus was. The rest of the time was spent hearing ‘I'll pray for you sweetie, we can take you to church with us if you want,’” Phillips told CNN.

Commenting on Mitchell’s iReport, Phillips said, “To live out loud and to speak freely about my beliefs brings many clucking tongues. I would think it’s easier to come out as gay than atheist.”

Mitchell said she spent years studying the history of religion and does believe it has “an important place in our community.” She has told her children that she’ll be fine if they decide to join a church when they are older.

She ended her essay:

I understand why people need God. I understand why people need heaven. It is terrifying to think that we are all alone in this universe, that one day we—along with the children we love so much—will cease to exist. The idea of God and an afterlife gives many of us structure, community and hope.

I do not want religion to go away. I only want religion to be kept at home or in church where it belongs. It’s a personal effect, like a toothbrush or a pair of shoes. It’s not something to be used or worn by strangers. I want my children to be free not to believe and to know that our schools and our government will make decisions based on what is logical, just and fair—not on what they believe an imaginary God wants.

After her post ran on CNN, Mitchell said she was encouraged by the number of people who agreed with her, or who disagreed but wanted to have a respectful discussion.

“I’m not saying that everybody should think how I do. I’m saying the people that do should have a place in our society and have acceptance and respect,” she said. “I just want to have children grow up and be able to not be afraid to say ‘I don’t believe that,’ or ‘I’m not part of that.’” 

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • Christianity • iReport

soundoff (15,081 Responses)
  1. 1word

    Jeremiah 29:13
    And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.

    I really feel for those who are waiting for God to reveal himself to them, without them taking it upon themselves to search for him. It just doesn't work that way, to believe in God you must have FAITH. He makes it oh so easy for us to find him but to the normal man it's oh so hard. We believe in the things we see in the natural, but it's what you don't see that you should be worried about.

    January 21, 2013 at 11:01 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      What "things" do you "see in the natural", you weenie?

      January 21, 2013 at 11:03 pm |
    • Gawd

      Here we go again quoting fictional books.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:04 pm |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      I did.

      Now I will wait for you to tell me I was doing it wrong.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:05 pm |
    • Dana

      "You can't convince a believer of anything; for their belief is not based on evidence, it's based on a deep seated need to believe."

      Carl Sagan

      January 21, 2013 at 11:07 pm |
    • Christo

      read this paragraph from 1word and put the thought of a creepy pedophile Catholic Priest in your mind then re-read it.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:09 pm |
    • Ron

      1word
      "Jeremiah 29:13
      And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart"
      I'm sure some people might find that of interest, but to anyone who understands logic and knowledge, it's simply an incantation by someone who is not really comfortable with facts. A silly appeal to fantasy.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:09 pm |
    • 1word

      Ron

      Is it a fantasy that we are real? Is it a fantasy that we live on planet earth? You cannot be foolish to believe all this just happened and everything here in this world wasn't placed here for us to use. God gave us everything we needed to sustain life. How can an explosion make water? LOL

      January 21, 2013 at 11:13 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      There is not a thing that points to the existence of some god, 1 word. Not a thing. You'd like to believe there is because it would make you feel all warm and fuzzy, but it's false comfort.

      Our existence is not proof of some sky fairy.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:16 pm |
    • Christo

      "How can an explosion make water? LOL"

      There is a very clear and concise reason why water exists on Earth. Your knuckles are dragging the ground 1word.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:17 pm |
    • Simran

      1 word,
      I suggest you should see a psychiatrist. For 2 reasons:
      1. You believe that you are not a normal person – Delusions of grandeur.
      2. You can see things that are not natural – Hallucinations!

      January 21, 2013 at 11:20 pm |
  2. Nietodarwin

    I do not fear death, in view of the fact that I had been dead for billions and billions of years before I was born, and had not suffered the slightest inconvenience from it. Mark Twain

    Faith is believing what you know ain't so. Mark Twain

    January 21, 2013 at 11:00 pm |
  3. virginia

    @Saraswati

    you are a very trouble individual you have lost all credibility....and all hope.

    January 21, 2013 at 11:00 pm |
    • Billy

      virginia is calling saraswati trouble!

      LMAO!

      OMG- I almost spit up. Too phuuuuuu*****ing funny.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:03 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Yeah, I think virginia's a few sandwiches shy of a picnic, IYKWIMAITYD.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:06 pm |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      You don't want to have to think to much, eh Virginia....

      January 21, 2013 at 11:07 pm |
  4. JC

    Isn't this the problem with today? People are choosing to not blelieve there is someone GREATER than themselves. God is real and Jesus is real. How sad for all the children who have parents that don't want to tell them the truth . Why would a person chose to not believe in someone who is about Love, Grace and Mercy. Just to go around this world and think of themselves?

    I am a believer in Christ, I am a Christian and I teach my children about God. It's much more meaningful then what is taught in the secular world. Because it's the truth! Thanks be to God.

    What I don't understand is how people think it's okay to impose the views of not believing, or want the freedom from religion but then want to make sure they surpress Christianity, that makes no sense.

    January 21, 2013 at 10:58 pm |
    • Dan

      It's not the truth. You are wasting your time and you are corrupting the minds of your children. Why can't you teach them right from wrong without filling their heads with lies?

      January 21, 2013 at 11:02 pm |
    • Gawd

      Please stop teaching your children that nonsense.

      [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gHbYJfwFgOU&w=640&h=390]

      January 21, 2013 at 11:03 pm |
    • LinCA

      @JC

      You said, "Isn't this the problem with today? People are choosing to not blelieve there is someone GREATER than themselves."
      No, the real problem is that there are millions of adults who can't manage to tie their shoes without asking their imaginary friend for help. The problem is that adults make decisions while suffering from the delusion that there is such a creature, that affect the real world.

      Your imaginary friend is just that, imaginary. It is no more likely to exist than the Tooth Fairy ot the Easter Bunny.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:03 pm |
    • Nietodarwin

      You could break this cycle of abuse.because it was forced on you as a child. I feel sorry for your kids, especially when they get more education and resent you for instilling these lies in their minds. It makes perfect sense for non believers to demand that xstians shut up, it's abuse, and xstians have been murdering non-believers for centuries for speaking reason. We couldn't even say or write these things if it weren't for the internet. The author's children are much more lucky than yours.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:16 pm |
    • Nietodarwin

      You could break this cycle of abuse. just because it was forced on you as a child doesn't mean you have to continue it. I feel sorry for your kids, especially when they get more education and resent you for instilling these lies in their minds. It makes perfect sense for non believers to demand that xstians shut up, it's abuse, and xstians have been murdering non-believers for centuries for speaking reason. We couldn't even say or write these things if it weren't for the internet. The author's children are much more lucky than yours.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:16 pm |
    • Bink

      Gawd – thanks for the Bill Nye vid

      There is Penn and Teller – The Bible is BS" on you tube

      January 21, 2013 at 11:22 pm |
  5. SomeoneE

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dN1iyJQGrcU&w=640&h=390]

    January 21, 2013 at 10:54 pm |
  6. BGeer

    It's a shame that the Lords return will be the only thing to sway your minds to know a TRUE belief and faith.. Christianity makes complete sense if you read the bible. Hope it's not to late for those of you that don't believe when the end of days is near. God have mercy on your souls!

    January 21, 2013 at 10:53 pm |
    • Dan

      It's not going to happen so don't lose any sleep over it.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:55 pm |
    • LinCA

      @BGeer

      You said, "Christianity makes complete sense if you read the bible."
      If you are still a christian after having read the bible, your comprehension must be pretty low.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:55 pm |
    • It's a shame

      It's a shame it only takes capital letters to identify a christard!
      [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YIpuKY88MFc&w=640&h=390]

      January 21, 2013 at 10:58 pm |
    • sqeptiq

      God is real because the bible says he is real and god wrote the bible so we know that it is true. And we know that god wrote the bible because the bible says that he wrote it. "Big wheel keep a spinnin' around..."

      January 21, 2013 at 11:00 pm |
    • Nietodarwin

      If we can eliminate all the nutty monotheists like you who go on talking about the "end of days", we might survive a great deal longer as a species. Your thinking is the enemy to our survival as a species, but you don't care about the harm you cause on this planet because you "believe." This is good reason to hate xstianity.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:05 pm |
    • sam stone

      BGeer: Fvck you and your empty proty threats.

      January 22, 2013 at 5:38 am |
  7. james

    I feel very sorry for this woman and especially for her children, because of what these pathetic religions have done in the name of God. They have much to answer for and just a little while longer and Jehovah will call them to answer for what they have done in his name and in the name of his son Jesus. See Revelation ch.18:4-10 and who do you think it applies to?

    January 21, 2013 at 10:47 pm |
    • Dan

      Do you have any idea how silly you sound?

      January 21, 2013 at 10:53 pm |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      See Revelation ch.18:4-10 and who do you think it applies to?

      The ramblings of a lunatic

      January 21, 2013 at 10:53 pm |
    • Christo

      what about all the non-believers who were pretty good people or the believers who were big time sinners. Is there a master algorithm that decides at judgment day. "St, Pete, sure I killed a few people but I was a preacher in prison sin free for 50 years!" Next guy steps up, "St. Pete, I never believed because it never made sense to me and I couldn't LIE to myself, that's a sin right?" ......who gets in.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:55 pm |
    • Bink

      Judaism or Christianity?

      January 21, 2013 at 10:55 pm |
    • james

      dan, yes I do, and to you and the rest of my responders I can only hope you would consider what your answers indicate. not much substance there but I reach out to those who want to know what the bible really teaches and encourage them to seek Jehovah with all their heart.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:10 pm |
    • Bink

      hey thanks for not trying to sway us

      January 21, 2013 at 11:14 pm |
    • james

      bink, you're welcome.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:26 pm |
  8. resurrected

    let me ask the athiests this. where are you imposed on by Christians. this is a public discussion. are christians knocking on your door. if you read new testament, no where is any war or killing ordained. nations war, and people use religion to make excuses to war, and only take Jesus name in vain. swearing to an unjust cause in the name of Jesus is taking the lords name in vain, violation of a command . Jesus Christ didnt run the Crusades,he told people to give testimony , and turn the cheek.. love your enemies. Jesus is not an american, or a republican or democrat. But Christians only have one boast, and to proclaim the gospel, for your own good. the Holy Spirit sustains His own reality. The devil propogates false religion, such as atheism.

    January 21, 2013 at 10:47 pm |
    • Bink

      i think people are tired of having religious Zealots like you telling what to think. I know I am. I respect your opinion – learn to tolerate others – isn't that tenet in the Bible as well?

      January 21, 2013 at 10:52 pm |
    • alex trebek

      Oh, I'm sorry, resurrected, you forgot to give your answer in the form of a question. And I'm afraid you've lost all your points.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:53 pm |
    • Bostontola

      Bink, reading these comments I see atheists telling religious people what they should think about as much.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:55 pm |
    • 0G-No gods, ghosts, goblins or ghouls

      Delusional people (believers) can be dangerous people. If they are not actually doing harm to others because their imaginary friend told them to, they are trying to change laws that affect others outside their cult. It's good to keep an eye on the crazies.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:58 pm |
    • resurrected

      Yes, no one can make a choice for you or demand anything from you. However, whenever the subject of philisophy comes up, or God, a christian should be well equipped scripturally able to give a resrponce to any idea presented as an argument, or question. There is no other means for the atonement for your soul than Jesus , messniah, god most high. only a coward would incouurage your unbelief hobby. noone is condemned. everyone is justified. study Gods word, dont let the world deceive you. this is your greatest responsibility before God.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:59 pm |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      Jesus has no relevance as a god without the Old Testament. I find it interestiog that you are so quick to throw it out.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:01 pm |
    • Bink

      dude cant you see you are completely brainwashed

      January 21, 2013 at 11:02 pm |
    • sqeptiq

      resurrected: using scripture to prove anything is the ultimate in circular reasoning which is completely invalid.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:07 pm |
  9. Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

    @ Just the Factless: you are a lying sack of steaming dog poo.

    EIther cite the proof you claim to have for the existence of a god who'd rather wipe his ass with your hair than acknowledge you as a believer, or shut the fvck up.

    January 21, 2013 at 10:46 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      You go girl! We'll never hear from him. . .

      January 21, 2013 at 10:48 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Hey, HAA! How are you??? Miss seeing you here.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:02 pm |
    • 0G-No gods, ghosts, goblins or ghouls

      I am well. Been busy with other things.

      No sign of JustNoFacts yet – must be working hard organizing all that evidence.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:15 pm |
    • 0G-No gods, ghosts, goblins or ghouls

      Well I guess that's the end of that handle. . . I'll just have to learn to tolerate Captain Azzhole and his inane anti-Canada crap.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:20 pm |
  10. Tim

    I believe that there is something bigger than us out there that makes all this possible. I don't conduct my life because of that. Anyone who conducts there life out of the fear of God is misguided. But to say you have to make things up doesn't make a lot of sense. You can simply say you don't know, and raise your kids to think for themselves. You don't have to deny the existence of God or point to God as a reason you should be a good person.

    January 21, 2013 at 10:34 pm |
    • Ron

      Tim
      "I believe that there is something bigger than us out there that makes all this possible"

      Goodie for you. I don't.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:36 pm |
    • Bostontola

      Tim, do you attribute our existence to god? Was our creation natural or supernatural?

      January 21, 2013 at 10:38 pm |
    • Christo

      natural, just as natural as those chemicals in your head creating the myth of the soul.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:42 pm |
    • Dana

      Belief is the end of intelligence.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:42 pm |
    • Pastor Rasaun O. Sheet

      Bigger than us? Yes Tim, its called the Universe....And should we finally get our program ironed out, It ll be an amazing ride to explore out there...

      January 21, 2013 at 10:45 pm |
  11. Janet in Eugene

    I would no more tell my 10yr old son that unicorns are real than tell him that some guy was born to a virgin and has a sky daddy. How patently wrong it is to lie to your child about the basics of biology? Shame on parents who continue to perpetuate a myth that has been debunked . I hope they wake up one day and realize that creating fear in a young child =abuse. Heaven v. hell? REally?

    January 21, 2013 at 10:34 pm |
    • Dana

      Creationism is not healthy for children.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:41 pm |
  12. Phil

    Ms. Mitchell's essay was a delight to read, a more palatable, less angry, version of atheism that I didn't think could be pulled off–pretty free of animus.Why can't we all just get along?

    January 21, 2013 at 10:30 pm |
    • Ron

      Phil
      ".Why can't we all just get along?"
      Mostly since reliigionists think they have the right to tell others how t live their lives.
      If religionists are willing to shut up and leave the rest of us alone, there'll be no problems.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:34 pm |
    • Dana

      I agree with Ron.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:39 pm |
  13. JL Busher

    Jesus is love. Many of you just don't understand that. He loves you all. Please read the 1st book of Corinthians chapter 13. I have read on this site comments that we Christians can be tolerated if we keep our beliefs at home or in the church. We can't because we are commanded by our Lord Jesus Christ to spread the gospel to all nations. My denomination alone has 10,000 home and foreign missionaries throughout the world and has for many decades. Larger Christian denominations have far more. The Christian message is the same as it was 2000 years ago. I would love to see all who read this post see me in heaven some day.

    January 21, 2013 at 10:29 pm |
    • Ron

      JL Busher
      "Jesus is love"
      There never was any such person, so you have a bit of a problem.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:31 pm |
    • Dana

      Keep up that false hope. We are all going to be worm food. Why does that bother you so much? Enjoy your life. It is the only one that you will get.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:32 pm |
    • Dana

      Ron, there is a Jesus. He put carpet on my stairs recently. He did good work but I wouldn't call it a miracle.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:33 pm |
    • GodFreeNow

      @JL, If you referred to that much assembling and replaced "christian" with "Islamic" I'm sure you would then get a good understanding of how atheists feel about your congregation.

      I think it's nice that you've found a place where you feel accepted. A lot of religion is based on simple kinship. However if you want to congregate over make-believe stories that have no evidence to support other than hearsay and faith, Comicon is also quite popular.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:45 pm |
    • tallulah13

      I really don't care that your Big Book of Religion tells you that you have to haras.s people with your stories. It's annoying and it's unwelcome. I was raised in a christian community, I know all about your god, and I gave it a lot of thought before deciding that there is not a single reason to believe in something for which there is no evidence.

      I believe that you are free to believe whatever you want. Why can't you return that courtesy?

      January 21, 2013 at 10:56 pm |
  14. Christo

    Tom Tom I figured someone as brilliant as you could sense the sarcasm. And you're calling me a moron? lol

    January 21, 2013 at 10:28 pm |
    • Bostontola

      JL, you are a nice person. What happens to this women's innocent children. They are taught there is no god. They could go their whole life not believing in god. Will they be excluded from heaven even though they are innocent?

      January 21, 2013 at 10:35 pm |
    • Christo

      no they won't be excluded from heaven, they will be worm dirt as you and I will be as well.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:37 pm |
    • mama k

      Wow, i think this article must have rendered everyone a little loopy. Replies are all over the place. What a mess..lol.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:42 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      As I said, Christo, I'm tired. I apologized if I missed the subtlety of your sarcasm.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:48 pm |
    • Christo

      no worries butt biscuit

      January 21, 2013 at 11:20 pm |
  15. 1word

    Godless parent means you will be the tail and not the head. Gods word will never pass away. So believe what you want, and raise your kids to be chasing their tails all their life.

    Deuteronomy 28:13

    King James Version (KJV)

    13 And the Lord shall make thee the head, and not the tail; and thou shalt be above only, and thou shalt not be beneath; if that thou hearken unto the commandments of the Lord thy God, which I command thee this day, to observe and to do them:

    January 21, 2013 at 10:26 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Oh, gee, you read a book. Me, too. Do you really think it was factual? If so, can you cite any examples to prove that it was? I wouldn't even bother, as I know the difference between fiction and non-fiction. Do you? It'd doubtful, but I'd love to see you prove otherwise, Cletus.

      Go right ahead.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:29 pm |
    • Ron

      1word
      "Gods word will never pass away"
      Problem is there isn't a shred of evidence for your fantasy god.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:29 pm |
    • Dana

      It always amuses me when people quote fiction to make a point.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:29 pm |
    • kayamar

      it's funny how every ancient and dead religion in the world also said that their gods would never pass away. What makes your religion so different?

      January 21, 2013 at 10:30 pm |
    • Bink

      so Deuteronomy is in the old testament – so does that make it for Christianity or Judaism – i'm so confused!

      January 21, 2013 at 10:33 pm |
    • 1word

      "Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Oh, gee, you read a book. Me, too. Do you really think it was factual? If so, can you cite any examples to prove that it was? I wouldn't even bother, as I know the difference between fiction and non-fiction. Do you? It'd doubtful, but I'd love to see you prove otherwise, Cletus. "

      There is historical data that Rehoboam was a King of the tribe of Judah, Rehoboam was the son of Solomon who was the Son of King David. There is also historical data that people mentioned Jesus and the miracles he done, you may want to do some research for your own. God cannot lie, he gave his life so we may live. I gave my life to him and now he lives in me!

      January 21, 2013 at 10:35 pm |
    • God's honest truth

      1word and the word is bogus

      January 21, 2013 at 10:38 pm |
    • Gawd

      You want Tom to research some made-up stories? What is the point of that? Why don't you pick up a science book for a change and see how things really work?

      January 21, 2013 at 10:38 pm |
    • 1word

      "kayamar

      it's funny how every ancient and dead religion in the world also said that their gods would never pass away. What makes your religion so different?"

      It's how I changed after coming into contact with my God. I wasn't a very good person until I gave my life to the Lord. The Bible explains this process, and everything the Bible said came true. My family hated me after coming into contact with the Lord. After my mind was renewed, I couldn't stand a person who didn't know the Lord and they couldn't stand me because they thought I was acting like I was better than them. Here's the scripture.

      Matthew 10:35-36

      King James Version (KJV)

      35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.

      36 And a man's foes shall be they of his own household.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:40 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      1word, there is no historical evidence that any of the biblical miracles happened and there is very little evidence of Jesus especially the resurrection.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:41 pm |
    • 1word

      "Gawd

      You want Tom to research some made-up stories? What is the point of that? Why don't you pick up a science book for a change and see how things really work?"

      Science? Really? Has Science proved why we Dream? Science was created by God to show us how to dissect the things he made.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:44 pm |
    • tallulah13

      So ancient people were familiar with their history and geography. How is that a surprise? None of that proves that any of the supernatural events of the bible took place. There is no proof of that. And actually, Christ is not mentioned by contemporary writers. Even the books of the bible were written after his death. Sorry.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:44 pm |
    • Gawd

      "Science was created by God to show us how to dissect the things he made."

      Nice way to spin it. Is that what the priest told you when he molested you?
      You are obviously too far brain-washed to reason.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:48 pm |
    • 1word

      tallulah13

      You have to find the truth for yourself, all I know is. I gave my life to God. I am born again. I experience things in my dreams that proves to me that God is real. We all will be judged accordingly, and only you will be kneeling before the Lord when he placed judgment on you. Here's a fact, we all will die after that only you and God will know where you go.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:49 pm |
    • Dan

      Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. You have no evidence.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:49 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Translation of 1word's post: I yam what I yam. If you don't understand what Iyam, yer gonna fry in hell.

      I can't prove it, but I know it's true, cuz I been teched by JEEBUS.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:52 pm |
    • 1word

      Gawd

      "Science was created by God to show us how to dissect the things he made."

      Nice way to spin it. Is that what the priest told you when he molested you?
      You are obviously too far brain-washed to reason.

      Jesus died to allow all men to have a personal relationship with God. Catholics have it twisted, they call their Priest Father and God said himself, call no man upon the earth Father. They also repent to a man who cannot save, all we can do is pray for one another "God is the one who can Save" not the Priest. I am not Catholic, I am Baptist and I experience God for myself, I don't need a Priest or Preacher to guide me, the Holy Ghost is guiding me and God intended it to be that way.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:53 pm |
    • LinCA

      @1word

      You said, "I experience things in my dreams that proves to me that God is real."
      Holy fucking shit. Your dreams are evidence?

      I guess I better repent. I don't want to end up on your imaginary friend's naughty list. </sarcasm>

      You said, "Here's a fact, we all will die after that only you and God will know where you go."
      It's a fact that we will all die. The rest is just plain bullshit. Your god is no more likely to exist than the Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:53 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Hey, 1dolt! Do you realize what an ass wipe you are? Probably not, as you're a fundie.

      Nobody cares what you believe you are or what you think anyone else is.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:55 pm |
    • 1word

      Dan

      Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. You have no evidence.

      Dan, if God revealed himself to the World everyone would believe. That would be too easy, God wants you to seek him and if you seek him with all your heart you will find him. I truly feel bad for those who wants evidence because it will take an action on your part to find the evidence. lol Ask any detector, the evidence doesn't fall in your lap.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:56 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Oh, so this is all a big game of hide-and-go-seek? Gee, 1 brain cell, is your god five years old?

      January 21, 2013 at 10:59 pm |
    • tallulah13

      I found the truth, 1word: There is no proof of any god. There is no rational reason to believe in any god.

      You have chosen to believe in something that has no substance because it pleases you, and your conviction was shared by every true believer of every god ever worshiped. Your belief does not grant you any special status or moral superiority, because your belief isn't special or especially moral. Sorry.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:01 pm |
    • sqeptiq

      "and the big wheel keep a spinnin' around..."

      January 21, 2013 at 11:13 pm |
    • james

      for all the scientist worshippers,a quote "one in seven UK based scientists or doctors has witnessed colleagues Intentionally altering or fabricating data during their research or for the purposes of publication" from the (British Medical Journal, Britain) and I would ask, How is that Piltdown man working for you?

      January 21, 2013 at 11:22 pm |
  16. RBN

    Everyone is godless. Some folks just lack the intelligence to know it or they know it but are too afraid to admit it to themselves. If I'm wrong, God should strike me dead right now! In your heart, you all know it won't happen because God is simply an imaginary friend that helps you get through life.

    January 21, 2013 at 10:26 pm |
    • Dana

      Nobody could possibly believe in that nonsense. They just WANT to believe for some reason.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:28 pm |
    • Bostontola

      I agree we are all godless but in most cases it's not an intelligence issue. Belief in god is rooted in emotion not intelligence. I know some really smart god believers.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:30 pm |
    • 1word

      RBN, God Loves you and he knows when you will come to him. You can blaspheme him all you want, he will still show mercy unto you when you get ready. I know God to be real for myself, one day you will too. When you finally admit that you are blind, lost, miserable and poor; God will be there waiting to allow you into his Glorious family.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:31 pm |
    • Christo

      the Christian end of the world predictions are like 0-33. Not a good winning percentage?

      January 21, 2013 at 10:34 pm |
    • RBN

      @1word – Thank you. I'll sleep so much better tonight knowing I'll be saved tomorrow...

      January 21, 2013 at 10:36 pm |
    • Dan

      I am really starting to feel sorry for this 1word guy.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:52 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Me too.He should change his name to "1 brain cell."

      January 21, 2013 at 10:57 pm |
  17. Dan

    I really need to start my own religion. There are still a lot of gullible, brain-washed people out there.

    January 21, 2013 at 10:25 pm |
    • Pope Leo X

      "It has served us well, this myth of Christ."

      January 21, 2013 at 10:27 pm |
    • Angelcrusher

      L. Ron Hubbard did it, praise Zenu...

      January 21, 2013 at 10:41 pm |
    • sqeptiq

      Most of them have been grabbed up by the mormons. There's a nutcase in Australia who claims to be jebus reborn. You need a good shtick if you're going to compete. Have you found any golden revelation plates or talked to an angel lately?

      January 21, 2013 at 11:24 pm |
  18. Aaron

    Some of these comments are great. So if I teach my kid religion, he will not have a mind of his own? He won't make his own decisions? He will be doomed because I am abusing him by teaching him beliefs the same way that a non-believer doesn't teach the beliefs?

    My question to those that do not teach religion, what will your or do you say when / if your kid comes to you and says "I want to go to Church." Will you allow them and let them make decisions on their own, or will you say no you can't go because we don't believe in that. (Obviously this may depend on the age of the child). How will you explain this to them whenever this concept comes up? I understand this is the opposite question that I would have to answer, if my kid says "I don't want to go to church."

    January 21, 2013 at 10:19 pm |
    • Ron

      "My question to those that do not teach religion, what will your or do you say when / if your kid comes to you and says "I want to go to Church."
      Silly hypotheticals are always hard to answer. Any evidence any kid ever did so?

      January 21, 2013 at 10:28 pm |
    • blkdoutgsxr

      I would probably have a discussion on him on why he would want to look into religion and find out what the underlying issue was. Same goes if my child told me, "pops, I'm thinking about joining a cult, whadda think?" You don't have to brainwash your kids into being skeptical, you do have to brainwash them to believe in a flying magic man in the sky (Santa and God)

      January 21, 2013 at 10:33 pm |
    • sqeptiq

      What would you say if your kid came up to you and said, " I need to go to Australia and live in a compound in the outback because jesus is there and he said I should come and the world is going to end soon"?

      January 21, 2013 at 11:27 pm |
  19. Ron

    In reply to Scott.
    There is no first-hand reference to an historical Jesus. None. Further, you're centuries off in what amounts to the compilation of the testaments; pretty sure the beauty contest for that took place far later, like in the 7th century.
    Any serious reading of history shows pretty clearly that those authoritarians who promoted one 'religion' or the other co-opted social mores and hoped to use them to pitch their power. The result is that the religious authoritarians claim to have originated those mores rather than the other way 'round.

    January 21, 2013 at 10:17 pm |
    • MarioLuiggi

      You obviously do not know history. You know none. Besides the 4 gospels and the entire New Testament authored by more than 10 different writers that knew and met Jesus there are hundreds of writings about Jesus and references to him in the first century by both Christians and non-Christians alike, Romans, Greeks and Jews. What he hell are you talking about? There is more evidence and writings about Jesus than there is about many other famous historical figures. Your hatred for religion now has blinded you to logic and evidence.

      January 21, 2013 at 10:53 pm |
    • tallulah13

      Actually Ron is correct. But religious fervor has led christians to ignore the facts, and to lie like Persian rugs.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:07 pm |
    • A Frayed Knot

      MarioLuiggi

      "Besides the 4 gospels and the entire New Testament authored by more than 10 different writers that knew and met Jesus"
      – The authorship of the writings in the NT is unknown or unproven. There is no evidence that any of them actually met this Jesus.

      " there are hundreds of writings about Jesus and references to him in the first century by both Christians and non-Christians alike, Romans, Greeks and Jews."
      – The writings of the secular historians report only what the new Christian sect claimed about their super-hero. Not one of them met this Jesus (or even lived at that time).

      What he hell are you talking about?
      – Indeed... backatcha.

      For an allegedly omniscient god, he sure left shoddy evidence of it.

      January 21, 2013 at 11:20 pm |
  20. Yanks 13!

    Get this women off the CNN home page1 She has had her two weeks of fame!

    January 21, 2013 at 10:17 pm |
    • Bink

      it's just started

      January 21, 2013 at 10:27 pm |
    • RBN

      And yet here you are still reading and commenting on the same story. I guess it's not time for it to go, is it?

      January 21, 2013 at 10:31 pm |
    • Dan

      Why, because she is making you all look silly?

      January 21, 2013 at 10:57 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.