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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. Nina

    Church is not the place to go for entertainment. Picking a church because the preacher tells you what you want to hear ???? How about picking a Church because it's truly the organization headed by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ? In that Church you will hear what He wants you to know. In that Church you will be able to do good for others, you will be encouraged to grow to your fullest potential, you will be able to feel His spirit as you partake of the Sacrament in His memory. Come and see for yourself: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

    July 28, 2013 at 10:30 am |
    • realbuckyball

      Jebus is the head of 34,000 sects of Christianity. Even if I wanted to check them all out, in one lifetime there isn't time. Oh wait. YOUR opinions on what the REAL one is, is THE correct one. Oh right. I forgot. YOU are special. Very very special. Indeed.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:41 am |
      • liz48

        The Lord Jesus said, your father is the devil and you will not recognize me; in fact you will hate Me...see John 8.

        July 28, 2013 at 11:20 am |
    • Richard Cranium

      LDS...the church founded by a convicted con-man...good choice.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:41 am |
      • skytag

        Jesus was convicted too.

        July 28, 2013 at 3:23 pm |
  2. On the Right Side

    Those who turn their back on God will answer for that come judgement day. This 78 year old will not be turning his back on God, no matter how "hip" it is to be anti-Christian in the Obama's America.

    July 28, 2013 at 10:28 am |
    • Michael

      No one is buying God as your excuse to hate others.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:29 am |
    • On and on

      My, oh, my... there is so much hatred in your heart. Let it go.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:29 am |
    • Purple Sky Fairy

      I miss the part where he said he hated people??

      July 28, 2013 at 10:33 am |
    • bajadelmar

      Typical xian, threatening others in order to control them. Your faith is fraud. You're just whistling past the graveyard fool and you need everyone else to also believe it in order to validate your magic sky fairy tripe.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:34 am |
    • One one

      BELIEVE OR BURN !!!

      What an infantile message.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:35 am |
    • HotAirAce

      Looks like you are struggling with having a black president.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:36 am |
    • earthshoes44

      Is that really what you got out of this article? Because it's not about turning your back on Jesus. It's about turning your back on the church as an organization. The two are not synonymous.

      I've almost 48 and I've been a Christian for most of my life. For many years I attended church regularly. At one point along the way I was was an administrative assistant. At another point I co-led a lay ministry. I've directed community wide VBS programs (several churches together), taught Sunday School and been a youth director.

      But a few years ago I got tired of politics, of church members who weren't interested in the youth program and curtailed any efforts we made to make our church the kind of place young people want to come. They complained about the early service and the contemporary music so much that the minister and the worship team decided to simply allow it to become a reflection of the second service (the traditional one). They've traded ceremony for worship our handful of young families stopped coming and the congregation is shrinking.

      Sadly, this is happening across our community. Churches here are rapidly becoming little better than warehouses for old souls. The young people aren't attending (not in any great number anyway) and the older members don't understand why not.

      I do. I continue to worship and seek God out by myself, but my church attendance is poor at best (I am well aware of what the Bible says about not forsaking the fellowship of other Christians–I haven't. I just don't go to church to find it). My relationship with God is fine and I know who died on the cross for me.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:42 am |
  3. Jason

    Church attendance is GROWING like crazy. Our church, for example, has QUADRUPLED in size, similar churches across the country are experiencing same exponential growth. The church in my parents' hometown is the same. We are struggling to expand the physical structure fast enough to keep up with the massive rise in attendance.

    July 28, 2013 at 10:27 am |
  4. Jocho Johnson

    The Kingdom of God is not in the sky, or in a building, the Kingdom of God is within us, and outside of us, and all around us. The world is our church. Where two men make peace, there is the Kingdom of God. Let him who has ears, hear.

    July 28, 2013 at 10:27 am |
    • Sue

      Jocho, that's bullshit plain and simple. When people make peace through their own efforts, they deserve credit for it. No reason to give your fictional sky creature credit for that, unless you are also going to blame him for all the millions of innocent kids who die from diseases and starvation.

      Get a brain...

      July 28, 2013 at 11:04 am |
      • JustTheFacts

        Sue... And a billion others before you once felt the exact same way. And they are all now in hell...

        July 28, 2013 at 11:12 am |
        • Zooterist

          JustTheFacts (how ironic a moniker is that!), you've just asserted with great satisfaction and self-righteousness that all those people are in hell. Generally if one states a thing as fact one obligated to provide the poof to back it up. Where's your proof? Clue: It must exist somewhere other than in your imagination and "beliefs."

          July 28, 2013 at 11:34 am |
  5. John

    What is this? Is this a joke? Where is CNN publishing Pope's speeches in Copacabana, this is what we want to read, not the opinion of some unknown person trying to accommodate to her preferences, who are you fooling with all this relativism and customized new faith ovement? Certainly not me nor all true Catholics.

    July 28, 2013 at 10:27 am |
    • Jason

      I absolutely agree. But this story, like others, pushes CNN's leftist agenda.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:31 am |
      • On and on

        Spoken just like the kind of person that turns people like Rachel off. You don't get it.

        July 28, 2013 at 10:34 am |
  6. treblemaker

    What I find interesting is that the only religion being constantly attacked nowadays is Christianity. Not even Islam gets the disrespect that followers of Jesus the Christ receive in today's mass media. Judaism used to be the world's "whipping boy", but not any more (except from their "stepbrothers" of the Arab world).

    Jesus warned his disciples that they would be hated by the world for his name's sake. Millennials got it all wrong too, along with every other generation before them. The church is not designed to suit your needs. The gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ is stark and unflinching in God's indictment of all mankind. The truth hurts. One cannot approach God with their mind, but only with a truly repentant heart, admitting all sins and asking for forgiveness.

    July 28, 2013 at 10:26 am |
    • On and on

      I don't know that "attack" is the right word, but there certainly are those in this forum (on both sides) who are doing that. CNN tends to publish articles on Christianity because it is the major religion in our country.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:33 am |
  7. Matthew

    It's the church's responsibility to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ and Him Crucified. Since the Gospel hasn't changed, there's no reason for the church to change.

    July 28, 2013 at 10:26 am |
    • Michael

      The problem is you guys are NOT preaching what's found in the Gospels. You're all fixated on condemning gay people.

      "I like your Christ. I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ." – Ghandi

      July 28, 2013 at 10:31 am |
      • Matthew

        We do preach what's in the Gospels. For instance, when we share with people that Jesus said marriage is between a man and a woman, people accuse us of condemning gay people. The problem is people want the church to cater its message to what they want to hear. It's the Church of Jesus Christ; not the church of the people.

        July 28, 2013 at 10:36 am |
        • snowboarder

          @matt, you are allowed to believe anything you want, but when you try to dictate the rights of others based upon your beliefs we have problems. i'm quite certain no one has ever asked you to marry a hom ose xual.

          July 28, 2013 at 10:41 am |
  8. Larry L

    I think the author is over-looking the elephant in the room. Could it be that Millennials are simply a generation able to process information and more of them are seeing no evidence of a god? Each of the religions has a sacred book, a super-hero who performs miracles, a system of punishment and reward, and a prayer process where the religious can beg their god for a variety of outcomes – including eternal life. Millennials are just connecting the dots faster due to enhanced IT capabilities, a myriad of examples of bad behavior from religious people, and a complete absense of results from all of the prayer activities. Maybe Millennials just aren't as naive?

    July 28, 2013 at 10:25 am |
  9. Betty W.

    You are absolutely right! P.S. I'm 69 years old.

    July 28, 2013 at 10:20 am |
  10. Marcus Geritolis

    This is a good article. It explains really why anybody leaves a church...no Jesus.
    I read alot of the comments on here, I will chime in 4 a sec.

    1st of all, we can disagree.

    I see many folks on here belittling someones opinion, because it differs from their own. If you believe in the Bible, I agree with you. If you don't believe in the Bible, I can see why you don't. I have NEVER been able to answer the tough questions non believers have had. I have seen people try ad-nausea to do so only to halfway explain things. It is a dis service to people truly seeking to do so.
    So to all you non believers, i will not try, like all the others to convert u on this blog. I will say to you however that evolution takes more faith than the Bible to believe in, so science ain't got all the answers either. The difference between me and a non believer is singular and simple. The Holy Spirit.
    He testifies in my heart to the reality and character of God. U don't have that, and really, without it, u can't believe. I dont judge ANYONE for being where I was before. I also believe God created what we call "science".So I honestly dont see a contradiction between the two, only how people interpret the data.

    to the christian..please...just shut up...live the bible in front of these people...dont smack them over the head with it.

    I have been on this planet for 44 years and there is one thing for sure I know to be fact. GOD IS REAL..... thats from me, just living life, knowing that to be true...not from a book.Religions are man made, why put any trust in that?...the non believers get it.Most christians STILL DON'T.
    I can only pray that the God in Heaven, whom I know to be there, reveals himself to you, if you think He is fantasy. Thats all I got..Be good to each other..Have a good day everybody.

    Mark

    July 28, 2013 at 10:20 am |
    • On and on

      As an atheist, I like what you have said here, "Be good to each other..Have a good day everybody." Right on!

      July 28, 2013 at 10:24 am |
    • Mike

      Many young people want to believe in something that lines up with the way they already live their lives; however, the kingdom of God is already determined, so I choose to live my life based on what it already tells us. To be able to answer questions which non-believers ask, it's usually because we do not want to offend, or that we haven't read enough to have those answers ready. Jesus is clear, one cannot enter the kingdom of God without being born again. We do not owe anyone that truth, simply tell them, it's in their court to decide for themselves, just kill with kindness, their issue is not with us, it's with themselves and the battle which frustrates their own inner knowing we are right. I remember prior to being saved how that feels, just let go, and free your mind.

      God bless, and I love talking to non-believers, it's such an opportunity for them to gain reservation in heaven.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:36 am |
  11. Barry Crickmer

    At the heart of Judeo-Christian philosophy is this problem: If God is both good and all-powerful, then how do you account for the existence of evil?

    July 28, 2013 at 10:19 am |
    • Keith

      WIthout evil, there can be no good. You need one to have the other.

      I'm not religious at all but this just logic

      July 28, 2013 at 10:26 am |
    • Roger

      God gave you a free will to choose good over evil so choose wisely. Otherwise we all would be robots and love would have no meaning. Its a choice we make everyday. Choose God and you will find the love of your life and everything will begin to make much more sense to you. God is there for you and always has been. He loves you unconditionally. He made you so you can love in return. Pass love on to everyone you meet and you find what your looking for. An inner peace will consume you and fill your life with the knowledge that YOU make a difference each and every day.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:37 am |
    • liz48

      Great question! The Truth of the Word of God, without the corruption of religion, is that man is made in the Image of God and is a co-creator of his destiny and can override or create his destiny. Religions introduce a god that is outside imposing his or her will in humankind who are depicted as helpless to resist. The God of Israel, Who is the God christians are supposed to refer to, is NOT of that nature at all. If you read scriptures like Deuteronomy 30:19, Psalm 82, Proverbs 18:20-21 and Galatians 6:7 you will find that the Will of God is that man chooses wisely, that he chooses LIFE, and that man can cause destruction by his choices because HE IS A CREATIVE SPIRIT JUST LIKE GOD and can create reality, even by the words he speaks.

      The Lord has created man His equal and desires a RELATIONSHIP WITH MAN not based on a religion or its rules or customs and fears, but in the freedom on a Loving Father and His Son. He sent His Son and our Brother to bring us back to His Family where we can live outside of Adamic rebellion and control. That is the Love of God that is the Truth behind His Word.

      His Desire is for man to experience His Kingdom of Peace and Joy within and be in right standing with Him (wrought by the sacrifice of Jesus) – see Romans 14:17.

      The corruption of the Truth that is christianity is that it is a false depiction of the Heart and Truth of the God of Israel, Who christians claim to worship.

      First, the roots of all christianity is in pagan customs and roman catholic doctrine. Over a little more than 2000 years man has developed his own idea of a religion that he claims pleases the God represented by the Bible.

      Second, the Bible itself was put together (the canon) and translated by people who were tainted by the christian religion. It was man who decided what would be the Bible and how it would be translated. For example, king james who was the sponsor of the famous king james translation of the bible gave the translators rules on how they were to translate; one rule was that they had to stick to language recognized by the church of england (the anglican church or the episcopalian church) at the time. There was a split from rome and the king of england was conscious of his need to remain relevant as the head of the church of england.

      Judaism has the Promise of the Messiah as a Core Hope and much was done to sever all ties to Judaism when the roman catholic system took over. One reason they used, ignoring the Truth of God's Word, was that it was the Jews who killed Jesus and therefore should be shunned. With that strategy they introduced pagan doctrines which involved sun worship etc. Even though Marin Luther introduced some reform from the roman catholic system, he was very much a roman catholic in that he favored the pope and had people burned at the stake who did not believe in infant baptism!

      There were deliberate moves to have a system that did not favor The Truth of God. We can hear from the Lord and speak to Him and read any book we desire and be led by Him into His Truth, which He has told us is the ONLY way we will be free. All other things may seem like Him but they will bring us into bondage and oppression, including the christian religion or any religion. The Lord never created a religion. Man did and expected god to endorse his good ideas. Rebellion is man's good ideas without the Lord's Endorsement...

      July 28, 2013 at 10:47 am |
    • Mike

      Such an easy question, i love this question. God hates evil, but He loves free will, and remember, when things go wrong, the Lord is at work, and if you are on a plane that goes down, heaven is yours should you be saved, although, if not saved, then that individual has decided not God...for Jesus dying is the only way God will accept you, and if you reject that, why expect heaven's glory...tisk tisk tisk.
      God provides us to choose free will, so if an individual chooses to do evil, this is not God, but he'll be there for you if you know Him.

      Bring on a tough question.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:14 pm |
  12. Lean6

    It is my belief that man's aim has always been to control the behavior of man...and there's not a more powerful and effective way than by religion. I also know what I know, and know what I see and believe...spontaneous combustion of gases in space will never explain the universe or human consciousness as we know it...we cannot define "nothingness". But, I simply cannot believe that the literal "social experiment" translation of the bible befits the creator of what I understand life to be. I've encountered enough religious types who respond with hostility, arrogance, and condescension to know that they simply do not know either, and are afraid to admit to there even being non-blasphemous curiosities about the subject. So, if I'm intellectually more mature than a pastor or his congregation, what purpose does it serve me to attend the church? I'm on a personal journey and quest for God and "life's meaning" at this point...the way that God intended it to be.

    July 28, 2013 at 10:17 am |
    • snowboarder

      there is the possibility of a force in the universe which we might call god, but it resembles the deities of the religions of man not one bit.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:19 am |
      • Lean6

        I think that kind of perspective, willfully separating that "force" from the flawed characteristics and limitations of man, is more "faithful" than blind allegiance to ideologies KNOWN to have been manipulated by man.

        July 28, 2013 at 10:22 am |
    • straighttalk

      Hypocits are all over the USA, especially in the South East, Heartland and the West. We in NE don't see too much of this but the snake oil preachers like the naive, dumb people in the southern States

      July 28, 2013 at 10:31 am |
  13. John Mason-Smith

    This is so dead-on. Great perspective and go God! I hope the message resonates with many people who are trying to reach those non-Christians whose only exposure to Christians is the TV evangelicals, Westboro Baptist news, and the bumper stickers on the car that just cut them off in traffic.

    July 28, 2013 at 10:13 am |
  14. Neil Senechal

    Just what I've been saying all along. The right using God's church for political gain is CLEARLY causing the decline.

    July 28, 2013 at 10:10 am |
    • On and on

      Freedom of thought does have that effect – to choose what makes sense to us, rather than choosing what someone wants to make sense to us.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:14 am |
  15. Faithwalk

    Social, racial and economic has nothing to do with justice. Justice is blind. Lady justice does not look at the color of your skin or the amount of money you have, and give you more or some of what belongs to someone else. That would not be justice. That would be stealing. You also cannot add to or take from the Bible. This just shows that our youth have been brainwashed by media and indoctrination passed off as education.

    July 28, 2013 at 10:07 am |
    • snowboarder

      it's funny to hear the religious complaining about indoctrination. pot, meet kettle.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:13 am |
    • Randy Garner

      Who says you can't add or take from the Bible? You guys do it constantly. That's why you have fifty different religions based on the same book!

      July 28, 2013 at 10:24 am |
  16. Vic

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jZ6kQCrPBmo&w=640&h=390]

    July 28, 2013 at 10:07 am |
    • Attack of the 50 Foot Magic Underwear

      "Always look on the bright si-ide of life!"

      July 28, 2013 at 10:11 am |
      • Vic

        Yes indeed!

        Ephesians 1:7
        "In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace"

        Scripture Is From:

        New American Standard Bible (NASB)
        Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation

        http://www.biblegateway.com/

        July 28, 2013 at 10:28 am |
  17. Pope Francis - 2nd In Line for God

    Wanted – Little boys to assist my priest with religous activities. Good pay, free loafs of bread, free uniform and knee pads.

    July 28, 2013 at 10:06 am |
  18. chaoticidealism

    Spot-on. We want a church that's relevant to our daily lives. Some of us have taken to forming our own little congregations... meeting in someone's dorm room, casually chatting over lunch, even frequenting forums on the Internet. Sometimes there aren't even any formal services. The problem is that many churches have fallen into the belief that Christians ought to live as though it were fifty years ago, that if we're traditional enough that'll somehow make us holy. For me, Christianity means fighting for others' rights–yes, including the rights of GLBT people–and being the kind of person that others can rely on. It means changing the world. If I had stayed under the delusion that Christianity is about being good so that a bearded Santa-Claus figure up in the sky would give you presents, then I would've left long ago. But that's not what it's about. It's about love God, love your neighbor. It's about everyday life. Hymns are nice, but when's the last time you helped your neighbor move a couch?

    July 28, 2013 at 10:05 am |
    • FreeFromTheism

      who is "we"?

      July 28, 2013 at 10:07 am |
    • On and on

      As an atheist, I like your intentions – helping your fellow people.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:08 am |
    • Ken78

      Congratulations. You have managed to remove Christ from Christianity. You should name your new religion Me-ianity.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:09 am |
    • Jesus Christ Son of God

      So, you don't believe in Santa Claus, but you believe in Jesus and God? Tell me how you feel about the Easter Bunny. None of these exist.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:09 am |
    • just me.

      If you did not fear the wrath of god you would not help your neighbour move their couch?Wow,it's sounds like religious folks need their beliefs to avoid becoming monsters-and we all know their are no religious monsters,right?

      July 28, 2013 at 10:17 am |
  19. jesuswithoutbaggage

    Rachel, I was born in 1951. Can I be an honorary Millennial?

    July 28, 2013 at 10:05 am |
    • On and on

      "Who" we are is a mindset – you can be anything you want.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:09 am |
  20. Austin

    i keep hearing people talk about information and technology as reason not to believe in God, righ like tractrors and cars......right. medical machines ect.

    This is whshful comment when it comes to any human at any time pondering the supernatural God.

    Mult.itudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt. 3Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever. 4But you, Daniel, roll up and seal the words of the scroll until the time of the end. Many will go here and there to increase knowledge.”

    July 28, 2013 at 10:02 am |
    • FreeFromTheism

      I've never heard anyone appeal to such a justification...
      As far as I know, the only justification that an atheist has not to believe is reason, that's it. There really is no mystery.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:05 am |
      • Austin

        not a true statement,

        there is zero reason not to believe in God. that is a personal desire in which your heart deceives you do to your sin nature.

        July 28, 2013 at 10:07 am |
        • Amir F.

          This is THE most obnoxious, uneducated, and just the most hyper ethnocentric post I've seen in the entire annals of my life's history

          July 28, 2013 at 10:12 am |
        • One one

          I shall now pray. Dear heavenly Father, I pray for you to bring harmony between Christians and atheists. Help me understand why godless trash, who deserve to burn in hell, are offended by those of us who are holy, pious, and obviously god’s favorite people.

          Help the unsaved filth understand that by judging and condemning them I am trying to save them from your self centered, vengeful, & vicious wrath, of which they deserve, AND I APPROVE, as long as they refuse to believe what I believe. Amen.

          July 28, 2013 at 10:13 am |
        • Attack of the 50 Foot Magic Underwear

          Oh, Austin: you never fail to entertain! Zero reason to not believe in god?
          Here's one: there's no evidence of a god.
          Two: Which god, specifically, given that mankind has worshipped thousands.

          Methinks you hav it backwards: there is zero reason to believe in a god.

          July 28, 2013 at 10:14 am |
        • snowboarder

          sorry austin, your comment is just plain stupid.

          July 28, 2013 at 10:29 am |
    • Austin

      3 But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. 2 For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, 4 treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5 having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people. 6 For among them are those who creep into households and capture weak women, burdened with sins and led astray by various passions, 7 always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:05 am |
      • Austin

        not directed at you with vitriol. only stressing the seeing but never learning part.

        July 28, 2013 at 10:08 am |
        • On and on

          I don't think you understand, Rachel (and others like her) actually think for themselves. There is an honest compassion withing each of us that does not need to be dictated to us.

          July 28, 2013 at 10:12 am |
        • JustTheFacts

          So also does the devil (think for themselves). But the devil is still in hell isn't he?...

          July 28, 2013 at 10:21 am |
        • snowboarder

          @just, hell is just an imaginary place with which to frighten the children and weak minded.

          July 28, 2013 at 10:35 am |
    • spsa2k

      Some people used to believe that the world was flat and that the sun was carted across the sky by a "god". Once science puts these "beliefs" to rest there simply are fewer believers. It's only a matter of time before science puts all the nonsensicals that is religion to rest.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:17 am |
      • JustTheFacts

        The so-called science you refer to is of the devil, and will send your soul to hell...

        July 28, 2013 at 10:23 am |
    • realbuckyball

      There is not a shred of evidence for anything "supernatural". If there was such a thing/being, it would be "natural" in it's environment. Positing a double-decker universe is ridiculous. Humans fantasized that, and then said "oh, but it's beyond our level of validation, so don't ask about how you can determine it's truth". There is JUST as much evidence for a 1957 Chevy orbiting Pluto, or a teapot orbiting the sun. Do you believe in them. They are there, but beyond your natural ability to detect them. AND THAT argument is just as valid as yours. It's called "special pleading" in Logic. It's a well known fallacy. Try to get to school sometime in your life, between sermons.

      BTW, there were hundreds of Books of Revelation, with end-times predictions. They were all wrong, including yours. You people have been trying to scare children for 2000 years now. Shame on you. It was quite the fad there for a while. Do you even know why they picked the one they did ? I doubt it. You should look in to that.

      July 28, 2013 at 10:35 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.