July 27th, 2013
08:33 AM ET

Why millennials are leaving the church

Opinion by Rachel Held Evans, Special to CNN

(CNN) - At 32, I barely qualify as a millennial.

I wrote my first essay with a pen and paper, but by the time I graduated from college, I owned a cell phone and used Google as a verb.

I still remember the home phone numbers of my old high school friends, but don’t ask me to recite my husband’s without checking my contacts first.

I own mix tapes that include selections from Nirvana and Pearl Jam, but I’ve never planned a trip without Travelocity.

Despite having one foot in Generation X, I tend to identify most strongly with the attitudes and the ethos of the millennial generation, and because of this, I’m often asked to speak to my fellow evangelical leaders about why millennials are leaving the church.

Armed with the latest surveys, along with personal testimonies from friends and readers, I explain how young adults perceive evangelical Christianity to be too political, too exclusive, old-fashioned, unconcerned with social justice and hostile to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

I point to research that shows young evangelicals often feel they have to choose between their intellectual integrity and their faith, between science and Christianity, between compassion and holiness.

I talk about how the evangelical obsession with sex can make Christian living seem like little more than sticking to a list of rules, and how millennials long for faith communities in which they are safe asking tough questions and wrestling with doubt.

Invariably, after I’ve finished my presentation and opened the floor to questions, a pastor raises his hand and says, “So what you’re saying is we need hipper worship bands. …”

And I proceed to bang my head against the podium.

Time and again, the assumption among Christian leaders, and evangelical leaders in particular, is that the key to drawing twenty-somethings back to church is simply to make a few style updates - edgier music, more casual services, a coffee shop in the fellowship hall, a pastor who wears skinny jeans, an updated Web site that includes online giving.

But here’s the thing: Having been advertised to our whole lives, we millennials have highly sensitive BS meters, and we’re not easily impressed with consumerism or performances.

In fact, I would argue that church-as-performance is just one more thing driving us away from the church, and evangelicalism in particular.

Many of us, myself included, are finding ourselves increasingly drawn to high church traditions - Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, the Episcopal Church, etc. - precisely because the ancient forms of liturgy seem so unpretentious, so unconcerned with being “cool,” and we find that refreshingly authentic.

What millennials really want from the church is not a change in style but a change in substance.

We want an end to the culture wars. We want a truce between science and faith. We want to be known for what we stand for, not what we are against.

We want to ask questions that don’t have predetermined answers.

We want churches that emphasize an allegiance to the kingdom of God over an allegiance to a single political party or a single nation.

We want our LGBT friends to feel truly welcome in our faith communities.

We want to be challenged to live lives of holiness, not only when it comes to sex, but also when it comes to living simply, caring for the poor and oppressed, pursuing reconciliation, engaging in creation care and becoming peacemakers.

You can’t hand us a latte and then go about business as usual and expect us to stick around. We’re not leaving the church because we don’t find the cool factor there; we’re leaving the church because we don’t find Jesus there.

Like every generation before ours and every generation after, deep down, we long for Jesus.

Now these trends are obviously true not only for millennials but also for many folks from other generations. Whenever I write about this topic, I hear from forty-somethings and grandmothers, Generation Xers and retirees, who send me messages in all caps that read “ME TOO!” So I don’t want to portray the divide as wider than it is.

But I would encourage church leaders eager to win millennials back to sit down and really talk with them about what they’re looking for and what they would like to contribute to a faith community.

Their answers might surprise you.

Rachel Held Evans is the author of "Evolving in Monkey Town" and "A Year of Biblical Womanhood." She blogs at rachelheldevans.com. The views expressed in this column belong to Rachel Held Evans.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Church • evangelicals • Opinion

soundoff (9,864 Responses)
  1. jim g

    religion.lol. and adult fairy tale.

    July 28, 2013 at 4:41 am |
  2. uckermanf

    It certainly would be nice if Millenials said this much more openly.

    July 28, 2013 at 4:38 am |
    • Keith

      They have, by walking away from churches in the thousands, if not millions.

      July 28, 2013 at 5:16 am |
  3. James

    Agree with most of it. People are wanting to connect with the God who created and loves them, rather than simply connecting with a religious system with a bunch of rituals.

    Disagree about the Catholic/Orthodox/Episcopal content though. Their ceremonies are designed for sensory impression too, just a different angle than the hip band and coffee shop crowd.

    Search your favorite online videos site for stuff by Ty Gibson (or search the interwebs for "digma" to find good stuff). His focus is relating to the character of God, and I've found I really resonate with it. Also recommend Ivor Myers. Different focus, but still full of real substance.

    July 28, 2013 at 4:36 am |
  4. Pat Robertson

    Unfortunately, peer pressure dies hard; the more ingrained religion is in your family, community, and country, the harder it is to break out and make up your own mind. Millenials are as much about consumerism as Gen-X, Y, or Z, and however sick of the politics, they aren't smart enough to leave the church fast enough. In our largely Baptist mid-Atlantic, many still grow up believing the Bible literally. Christianity is pretty on-your-sleeve here, and it's nothing compared to other states. Even in California, the young expect each other to tow the line, especially when it comes to potential marriage partners. I definitely don't advise joining a Christian singles group if you at all cherish the freedom to think, and don't put priority A-1 on breeding.

    July 28, 2013 at 4:19 am |
  5. Jac

    Cutting edge physics has come to a curious conclusion, with the advent of the Holographic Principle.

    There has been a recent convergence of quantum theory and information theory springing from studies of black hole entropy. Physicists now think that what we perceive as reality is really an illusion. The universe itself is a quantum computer running a holographic simulation.

    Now the curious question is, if the universe is a simulation... who's running the simulation?

    July 28, 2013 at 4:17 am |
    • NavinJay

      We're on a big holo deck.

      July 28, 2013 at 4:34 am |
    • No one

      Praised be the flying spaghetti monster!

      July 28, 2013 at 4:34 am |
    • Kevin

      Please tell me you don't buy that theory.

      July 28, 2013 at 4:45 am |
    • HotAirAce

      Douglas Adams, with the help of a few mice.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:13 am |
  6. NavinJay

    Christian: "Why don't you just believe in God in case you're wrong. What have you got to lose"
    Me: "The same reason you don't show conformance to the Goddess Maat increase your about her.

    July 28, 2013 at 4:05 am |
    • toll

      I bet this would be a good point if it made any sense at all.

      July 30, 2013 at 9:53 pm |
  7. Robert

    The Old and New Testaments say ga_y se_x is sin. Anyone who rejects that need not pretend to be a Christian because he is rejecting the Word of God.

    July 28, 2013 at 3:56 am |
  8. Concord

    I guess you can call me a millennial too but that doesn't matter because I search for truth.
    People fall away from Christian churches today because of the Truth and not because of fake "consumerism and performances." When you say you're drawn to "high church traditions," have you ever read why Jesus came to the Pharisees? Did it ever mention in the Bible that we are to be friends with the world?

    James 4:4 NASB
    4 You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.

    Matthew 5:17 NASB
    17 “Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. 18 For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not [h]the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished. 19 Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches [i]others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever [j]keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

    July 28, 2013 at 3:43 am |
    • I wonder

      Which one of Fred Phelps' grandkids are you?

      July 28, 2013 at 3:54 am |
  9. NavinJay

    There is not one scientist alive that will say evolution is perfect and we have all of the answers behind it. But, we can see plainly from the fossil record and dna and other evidence that evolution itself is a fact. Just like we still don't fully understand how gravity works but we can see that it does work. Evolutionists continue to dig and search and understand and fine tune the theory. Do you think not one scientist would LOVE to be the one to get his name up there to say his is the one to disprove Darwin? Yet, there is no one. Creationists have the perfect (and easy) answer. God made everything. Nice and neat and tidy and they don't even need the slightest smidgen of proof whatsoever. None. I think I'll go with the people that are at least looking for the answers and are willing to provide evidence instead of those that say they already have all the answers with no evidence at all.

    July 28, 2013 at 3:41 am |
    • Jac

      Who came up with the Theory of Gravity?
      Who came up with Relativity?
      Who came up with the Big Bang theory?

      Chances are you know the first two without even thinking, but struggle when it comes to the third.

      It was Monseigneur Georges Lemaître. A Jesuit priest and physicist.

      The theory was called the "Primeval Atom." The terms Big Bang and Singularity were not yet in the lexicon. The term Big Bang was actually developed by Fred Hoyle, to deride this silly and preposterous theory... by the priest.

      You see, most scientists including Einstein, really wanted to believe in what was called "Steady State" theory, in which the universe always existed. The whole idea of a creation event made them feel uncomfortable, with all it's obvious implications.

      It took half a decade to accept the theory, with the discovery of the predicted microwave background radiation. Less time than it took the church to accept a non earth centric solar model after Copernicus and Galileo.
      My school books in the 70's still taught both theories.

      You see, dynamics you appear to be attributing to the church are in fact human failings.

      July 28, 2013 at 4:05 am |
      • NavinJay

        Very good points and good information.

        For me, I don't really worry too much about The Big Bang Theory or the creation of the universe as a whole

        I think its wonderful and great and awesome scientists and others are working on it and coming up with theories and
        such. BUT, it does not affect my life today. And I don't think it will affect my life tomorrow or next week or most
        likely in 10 years from now.

        If you want to know my personal opinion, which, that along with $2.00 will get you a cup of coffee. I don't think humans will EVER have THE answer for how and when the universe got here. I believe it is beyond our capabilities. And, I am hard
        pressed to think that will ever change no matter how long mankind exists.

        I think things related to the Earth and our own solar system we can understand. It's within our grasp. But the
        universe is too large and there are too many unknowns that will remain unknown forever to us.

        July 28, 2013 at 4:19 am |
      • Science

        I'm sick of Christian apologists claiming that science got it wrong the first time.

        Was it Christianity who taught us the theory of gravity? Or electromagnetism? Or evolution? Or the Big Bang?
        Stop whining about us getting things wrong, when the only thing you had given us is some old fairy tales from a dusty book.
        Science on the other hand literally built up modern civilization today.

        July 28, 2013 at 4:22 am |
  10. No one

    If you want a change in substance, start worshiping Allah, same BS, different names, good enough?

    July 28, 2013 at 3:36 am |
    • Maggie

      Alas, her entire point zoomed right over your head.

      July 28, 2013 at 4:00 am |
      • No one


        July 28, 2013 at 4:02 am |
  11. FAFournier

    As the article shows, millenials reject God because if he were as smart as they are, he'd agree with 100% of what they, and all the people they know, think. For the Church to be credible in their eyes, it would need to cater to their every wish and feeling. They are too self-absorbed and arrogant, they have never been taught humility and without it, they can't understand religion.

    July 28, 2013 at 3:17 am |
    • Anonymous

      I think you missed the point of the article.

      July 28, 2013 at 3:21 am |
    • Observer


      Or maybe they disagree with all the nonsense in the Bible like its support for slavery and discrimination against women, gays, slaves, and the handicapped.

      Why not read it sometime?

      July 28, 2013 at 3:24 am |
  12. Kirsty

    A lot of the 'christianity' mentioned isn't christianity and gives the rest of us a bad name.

    I am a 20 year old student and have been taught evolution all though school and university. But I still do not believe it is accurate. For anyone who is truly educated, we are taught all the time at University to challenge research. To find the flaws, because it is impossible for any science to be objective and the conclusions drawn are presented to us as facts when they may not be. I have been to many talks by various scientists whose job is to do just that. They regularly are challenging key 'evidence' for evolution and providing explanations in line with creationism. If anyone wants to read more then look at http://www.creationministries.org/.

    Also, it is possible for christians to be loving and welcoming to the LBTG community while still not condoning their actions. I have a friend who goes to church with me who is gay. And he is still welcomed in church every Sunday. A true evangelical, christian church will recognise we all have faults and we all sin. But part of church is being there for each other and loving each other despite the flaws. Yes when the bible is taught things may be said against gay behaviours. but the same is taught against lying, stealing, adultery, judging each other and the list goes on. The aim of these teachings isn't to judge but to help people realise what God wants from our lives, but also to help us recognise that God loves us despite all of these things, but it is not the place of the members of the church to judge. I have been to churches where this is not the case and been pushed away.

    So please, before you say you have to be uneducated to dismiss creation by evolution, think about whether you are accepting evolution purely because it is deemed as 'science' and you haven't studied and criticised it for yourself. Also, don't judge all christians by the few who persecute people for their lifestyle. Christianity is about accepting people even if they do things you don't agree with.

    July 28, 2013 at 3:15 am |
    • Observer


      You did very well until the next to last line: "Also, don't judge all christians by the few who persecute people for their lifestyle."

      It's FAR more than "a few". There are huge numbers of Christian hypocrites who protest against gays. Look at blogs on here. Think about the MILLIONS of dollars collected by the tax-free churches to spend trying to deny equal rights to gays.

      Kudos to your church, but sadly there are far too many churches that aren't like yours.

      July 28, 2013 at 3:20 am |
      • Kirsty

        there are also many that are. remember we are speaking about evangelicals here, not every denomination of christianity, I can't speak for all of them. Unfortunately the ones who do judge are the ones people hear about. you would be surprised at how many are not like that. the only way to find them though is to turn up to a random church on a typical Sunday.

        July 28, 2013 at 3:24 am |
    • Colin

      Kristy, let me tell you why creationism is not plausible.

      First and most obviously is the fossil record. The fossil record is much, much more than just dinosaurs. Indeed, dinosaurs only get the press because of their size, but they make up less than 1% of the entire fossil record. Life had been evolving on Earth for over 3 thousand million years before dinosaurs evolved and has gone on evolving for 65 million years after the Chicxulub meteor likely wiped them out.

      The fossil record includes the Stromatolites, colonies of prokaryotic bacteria, that range in age going back to about 3 billion years, the Ediacara fossils from South Australia, widely regarded as among the earliest multi-celled organisms, the Cambrian species of the Burgess shale in Canada (circa – 450 million years ago) the giant scorpions of the Silurian Period, the giant, wingless insects of the Devonian period, the insects, amphibians, reptiles, fishes, clams, crustaceans of the Carboniferous Period, the many precursors to the dinosaurs, the 700 odd known species of dinosaurs themselves, the subsequent dominant mammals, including the saber tooth tiger, the mammoths and hairy rhinoceros of North America and Asia, the fossils of early man in Africa and the Neanderthals of Europe.

      The fossil record shows a consistent and worldwide evolution of life on Earth dating back to about 3,500,000,000 years ago. There are literally millions of fossils that have been recovered, of thousands of different species and they are all located where they would be in the geological record if life evolved slowly over billions of years. None of them can be explained by a 6,000 year old Earth and Noah’s flood. Were they all on the ark? What happened to them when it docked?

      A Tyrannosaurus Rex ate a lot of food – meat- which means its food would itself have to have been fed, like the food of every other carnivore on the ark for the entire 360 odd days Noah supposedly spent on the ark. T-Rex was not even the largest carnivorous dinosaur we know of. Spinosaurus, Argentinosaurus and Carcharodontosaurus were all larger and ate more even meat. Even they were not large enough to bring down the largest sauropods we know of, many species of which weighed in at close to 100 tons and were about 100 feet long. A bit of “back of the envelope” math quickly shows that “Noah’s Ark” would actually have to have been an armada of ships larger than the D-Day invasion force, manned by thousands and thousands of people – and this is without including the World’s 300,000 current species of plants, none of which could walk merrily in twos onto the ark.

      Then, of course, there are the various races of human beings. There were no Sub-Saharan Africans, Chinese, Australian Aboriginals, blonde haired Scandinavians, Pygmies or Eskimos on the Ark. Where did they come from?

      Second, there are those little things we call oil, natural gas and other fossil fuels. Their mere existence is another independent and fatal blow to the creationists. Speak to any geologist who works for Exxon Mobil, Shell or any of the thousands of mining, oil or natural gas related companies that make a living finding fossil fuels. They will tell you these fossil fuels take millions of years to develop from the remains of large, often Carboniferous Period forests, in the case of coal, or tiny marine creatures in the case of oil. For the fossils to develop into oil or coal takes tens or hundreds of millions of years of “slow baking” under optimum geological conditions. That’s why they are called “fossil fuels.” Have a close look at coal, you can often see the fossilized leaves in it. The geologists know exactly what rocks to look for fossil fuels in, because they know how to date the rocks to tens or hundreds of millions of years ago. Creationists have no credible explanation for this.

      Third, most of astronomy and cosmology would be wrong if the creationists were right. In short, as Einstein showed, light travels at a set speed. Space is so large that light from distant stars takes many years to reach the Earth. In some cases, this is millions or billions of years. The fact that we can see light from such far away stars means it began its journey billions of years ago. The Universe must be billions of years old. We can currently see galaxies whose light left home 13, 700,000,000 years ago. Indeed, on a clear night, one can see the collective, misty light of many stars more than 6,000 light years away with the naked eye, shining down like tiny accusatorial witnesses against the nonsense of creationism.

      Fourth, we have not just carbon dating, but also all other methods used by scientists to date wood, rocks, fossils, and other artifacts. These comprehensively disprove the Bible’s claims. They include uranium-lead dating, potassium-argon dating as well as other non-radioactive methods such as pollen dating, dendrochronology and ice core dating. In order for any particular rock, fossil or other artifact to be aged, generally two or more samples are dated independently by two or more laboratories in order to ensure an accurate result. If results were random, as creationists claim, the two independent results would rarely agree. They generally do. They regularly reveal ages much older than Genesis. Indeed, the Earth is about 750,000 times older than the Bible claims, the Universe about three times the age of the Earth.

      Fifth, the relatively new field of DNA mapping not only convicts criminals, it shows in undeniable, full detail how we differ from other life forms on the planet. For example, about 98.4% of human DNA is identical to that of chimpanzees, about 97% of human DNA is identical to that of gorillas, and slightly less again of human DNA is identical to the DNA of monkeys. This gradual divergence in DNA can only be rationally explained by the two species diverging from a common ancestor, and coincides perfectly with the fossil record. Indeed, scientists can use the percentage of DNA that two animal share (such as humans and bears, or domestic dogs and wolves) to get an idea of how long ago the last common ancestor of both species lived. It perfectly corroborates the fossil record and is completely independently developed.

      Sixth, the entire field of historical linguistics would have to be rewritten to accommodate the Bible. This discipline studies how languages develop and diverge over time. For example, Spanish and Italian are very similar and have a recent common “ancestor” language, Latin, as most people know. However, Russian is quite different and therefore either did not share a common root, or branched off much earlier in time. No respected linguist anywhere in the World traces languages back to the Tower of Babel, the creationists’ simplistic and patently absurd explanation for different languages. Indeed, American Indians, Australian Aboriginals, “true” Indians, Chinese, Mongols, Ja.panese, Sub-Saharan Africans and the Celts and other tribes of ancient Europe were speaking thousands of different languages thousands of years before the date creationist say the Tower of Babel occurred – and even well before the date they claim for the Garden of Eden.

      Seventh, lactose intolerance is also a clear vestige of human evolution. Most mammals only consume milk as infants. After infancy, they no longer produce the enzyme “lactase” that digests the lactose in milk and so become lactose intolerant. Humans are an exception and can drink milk as adults – but not all humans – some humans remain lactose intolerant. So which humans are no longer lactose intolerant? The answer is those who evolved over the past few thousand years raising cows. They evolved slightly to keep producing lactase as adults so as to allow the consumption of milk as adults. This includes most Europeans and some Africans, notably the Tutsi of Rwanda. On the other hand, most Chinese, native Americans and Aboriginal Australians, whose ancestors did not raise cattle, remain lactose intolerant.

      I could go on and elaborate on a number of other disciplines or facts that creationists have to pretend into oblivion to retain their faith, including the Ice Ages, cavemen and early hominids, much of microbiology, paleontology and archeology, continental drift and plate tectonics. Even large parts of medical research would be rendered unusable but for the fact that monkeys and mice share a common ancestor with us and therefore our fundamental cell biology and basic body architecture is identical to theirs.

      In short, and not surprisingly, the World’s most gifted evolutionary biologists, astronomers, cosmologists, geologists, archeologists, paleontologists, historians, modern medical researchers and linguists (and about 2,000 years of accu.mulated knowledge) are right and a handful of Iron Age Middle Eastern goat herders copying then extant mythology were wrong. Creationists aren’t just trying to swim upstream against the weight of scientific evidence; they are trying to ascend a waterfall.

      July 28, 2013 at 3:29 am |
      • madealiveagonize

        Irreducible Complexity. Physics. Darwinian Evolution is a Dead Horse. there are no fossils proving evolution, only that things lived and died, but NEVER has anyone produced a single ACTUAL transitionary species; THIS is because Darwin never knew about the electron microscope to come less than 100 years later. He should have evolved autonomous cryogenic soul freeze. He would be speaking even louder against his antiquated lack of observable science.

        Consensus of Science is always started with one idea and one person convincing their peers to accept or reject said idea based on observable evidence or on a agenda, but to accept it by sole belief is not science at all.

        notice the usual and redundant hypothetical statements from science fiction philosophers like Hawking: he states no fact, just what if.... either way, if the universe finite or infinite, it is still part of a larger existence that demands Origin.

        “So long as the universe had a beginning, we could suppose it had a creator. But if the universe is really completely self-contained, having no boundary or edge, it would have neither beginning nor end: it would simply be. What place, then, for a creator?”
        ― Stephen Hawking

        July 28, 2013 at 4:07 am |
        • Kevin

          There's no such thing as a transitional species. Everything is it's own final product.

          That's how slow evolution moves. Pity your tiny mind can't comprehend numbers of that magnitude.

          July 28, 2013 at 4:54 am |
      • jungleboo

        I enjoyed your post.

        July 28, 2013 at 6:59 am |
    • NavinJay

      There is not one scientist alive that will say evolution is perfect and we have all of the answers behind it. But, we can see plainly from the fossil record and dna and other evidence that evolution itself is a fact. Just like we still don't fully understand how gravity works but we can see that it does work. Evolutionists continue to dig and search and understand and fine tune the theory. Do you think not one scientist would LOVE to be the one to get his name up there to say his is the one to disprove Darwin? Yet, there is no one. Creationists have the perfect (and easy) answer. God made everything. Nice and neat and tidy and they don't even need the slightest smidgen of proof whatsoever. None. I think I'll go with the people that are at least looking for the answers and are willing to provide evidence instead of those that say they already have all the answers with no evidence at all.

      July 28, 2013 at 3:40 am |
  13. NavinJay

    God and religion have outgrown their usefulness. When we didn't understand how the world worked we invent gods and beings that helped us to understand things. And even though it was incorrect, it served a need. Today, we have knowledge and we understand how things work. And we have even learned that if we don't fully understand something, its okay to say we don't know. We don't need the inventions of gods and religion anymore. The people that still cling to it do so out of fear.

    July 28, 2013 at 3:12 am |
    • Adam

      So God has to be "useful" to you before you would consider submitting your life to him? Did you ever stop to consider that you're putting God in your little box?

      July 28, 2013 at 3:42 am |
      • NavinJay

        Not useful to me. Useful to people. You want me to submit my life to something that isn't there? Why aren't you submitting your life to Jack Frost? For the same reason. But, I did leave out many rulers use god and religion to control people. Any use for religion. I control my destiny and I am responsible for my own actions.

        July 28, 2013 at 3:50 am |
  14. NavinJay

    God and religion have outgrown their usefulness. When we didn't understand how the world worked to invent gods and beings that helped us to understand it. And even though it was incorrect, served a need. Today, we have knowledge and we understand how things work. And we have even learned that if we don't fully understand something, its okay to say we don't know. We don't know the inventions of gods and religion anymore. The people that still cling to it do so out of fear.

    July 28, 2013 at 3:00 am |
  15. Tony Montana

    We made it through the ...1920, sixties and some matured. The millennials will mature given good role models. Science is HOW god made the universe. Gays should be illegal no matter what queen Elezibeth 'Marry' thinks. This isn't 300 years ago. God doesn't want gays in the mansion straight people working the fields. Having our right to vote against gays and gay 'marriage' isn't 'civil justice'. Gays are not a race. Constantine made the persecution of Christians by Jews illegal in 333. Christians are the most persecuted religion. God made man and woman to love each other. Gays and Lesbians will burn in hell.

    July 28, 2013 at 2:40 am |
    • Observer

      Tony Montana,

      Sklp the HYPOCRISY. When you start trashing more the MUCH GREATER number of Christian ADULTERERS, then you will begin to have credibilty.

      July 28, 2013 at 2:43 am |
    • Chrashtopher

      You are incredibly offensive, you reptile.

      July 28, 2013 at 2:44 am |
    • Just Call Me Lucifer

      Stick to what you know Tony... cocaine and murder. There's a good boy.

      July 28, 2013 at 2:45 am |
      • David Edwards


        July 28, 2013 at 4:42 am |
    • Owl

      Obvious troll is obvious.

      July 28, 2013 at 3:20 am |
  16. Dave

    Mike H –
    Sorry I took a while in getting back to you. Good points and yes, in your example, the act of killing for killing's sake is universally accepted as wrong.

    However, what are you basing this believe in besides a subjective societal belief. If you look to the old Soviet Union and Nazi Germany, they might object. Hitler killed for the sake of expanding German living space and for racial beliefs of ridding the world of the "undesirables". Joseph Stalin killed for the political convenience of whipping the Soviet Union in to the modern world. Although both men failed in various ways for various reasons, I am sure both men would have argued that they had their perspective society's good at heart.

    Killing is wrong because a higher authority said it is wrong. That was written in to our hearts by God. Mankind through its varying forms of government have slight variations on this but as you said it is universally accepted. However without God, murder for murder's sake is just a lofty opinion that may or may not be obeyed at whim. You have to have a belief in God to have a belief in the dignity of man or the concept of the dignity of man is just an aloof theory.

    July 28, 2013 at 2:38 am |
    • Observer

      Christians aren't nearly as stupid as you might think they are. Most of them are bright enough to figure out that going around killing everyone isn't going to work out in the long run. They don't need a 2,000-year-old book to figure that out for them. Give them a break.

      July 28, 2013 at 2:59 am |
  17. NavinJay

    What Were Jesus’ Last Words on the Cross?

    Matthew 27:46: Eli, Eli, lama sabachtani? that is to say, My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?
    (Verse 50 says he cried out again before dying, but no mention is made of spoken words.)

    Luke 23:46: Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit.

    John 19:30: It is finished

    July 28, 2013 at 2:37 am |
    • Athy

      Did they speak English there at that time?

      July 28, 2013 at 2:39 am |
      • NavinJay

        It's been translated...over and over..and Kings deciding what stays and what goes and words not exactly translated correctly. So many flaws with a book passed down for 2000 years. You can't get 2 people that witnessed the same traffic to give the same story. Why do we think the Bible is any different?

        July 28, 2013 at 2:55 am |
      • NavinJay

        traffic accident that is...

        July 28, 2013 at 2:57 am |
        • K

          But the message still remains, and doesn't change between Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John. Jesus came to show God's love to ALL. He died on the cross for that love. That's the message that attracted thousands to Jesus on a hillside and the message that will endure. It makes me sad that Christianity morphed into something associated with hate because that is not what Jesus came for.

          July 28, 2013 at 3:33 am |
  18. Patrick Ptomey

    Or it may be because unlike 10 years ago much of today's world is connected through a highly-developed social network of people that spans across countries. We now have the ability to discuss our personal beliefs in cyber-communities and are introduced to alternative ways of thinking which are not typically encouraged by our religious communities. Religion claims to have all the answers, but Google shows you the answers.

    July 28, 2013 at 2:28 am |
    • NavinJay

      Haven't you heard the big thing now? Churches warning parents to keep their kids off the internet because it will make them atheists. I can show you some links about this..but..you can Google it.

      July 28, 2013 at 2:33 am |
  19. Triston

    I'm not sure how she wants us to accomplish this. Does a truce between faith and science mean evangelicals have to accept evolution? Not going to happen. Does welcoming our LGBT friends mean we will consider their lifestyles as anything other than sinful and unnatural? Again not going to happen. So with these out, where do we go from here??

    July 28, 2013 at 2:25 am |
    • Andres

      You hit it in the nail. Millenials are leaving becuase the church is not adjusting to the changes in times. so they look for other connections with God and sprituality.

      July 28, 2013 at 2:38 am |
    • KatieG

      I can tell you from personal experience that Christians embracing evolution and the LGBT community/lifestyle is not only possible, but is already happening. There is a hefty number of churches that actively do both. If the younger generations don't give up on the Church, they will make some even bigger waves (for the good. i.e. embracing evolution and the LGBT community/lifestyle)

      July 28, 2013 at 2:45 am |
      • Just Call Me Lucifer

        Sorry... its too late for that. Religion is on its way out and good riddance. Stupidity will no longer be tolerated, especially willful stupidity.

        July 28, 2013 at 2:53 am |
    • Truth Prevails :-)

      You fools need to stop the bigotry and stop referring to the LGBT as a lifestyle/sinful/unnatural. Sin is in direct relation to the bible and thus does not apply to everyone (only 2 billion of the 7 billion on the planet are christian). Being LGBT is no more a lifestyle or unnatural as being hetero is or being left-handed is. You fools need to educate yourselves and realize the facts that are backed with ACTUAL evidence. You fools need realize that it is opposite gender parents that create the LGBT.

      July 28, 2013 at 6:37 am |
  20. NavinJay

    Genesis 1:31 God was pleased with his creation.
    Genesis 6:5-6 God was not pleased with his creation.

    Sounds Bipolar to me. Maybe some meds might help....

    July 28, 2013 at 2:25 am |
    • Triston

      You've showed a verse "before" man sinned and a verse "after" man sinned. It's pretty simple really.

      July 28, 2013 at 2:28 am |
      • NavinJay

        He made man with the capability of sinning. He liked that...oh wait..he actually used the capability..no I don't like that...

        July 28, 2013 at 2:30 am |
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About this blog

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