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August 2nd, 2013
08:00 AM ET

Why millennials need the church

Opinion by Rachel Held Evans, special to CNN

(CNN) - For a time, I counted myself among the spiritual but not religious, Christian but not churchgoing crowd.

Like many millennials, I left church because I didn’t always see the compassion of Jesus there, and because my questions about faith and science, the Bible, homosexuality, and religious pluralism were met with shallow answers or hostility.

At first I reveled in my newfound Sunday routine of sleeping in, sipping my coffee and yelling at Republicans who appeared on ”Meet the Press.”

But eventually I returned, because, like it or not, we Christian millennials need the church just as much as the church needs us. Here’s why:

Baptism

As former Methodist bishop Will Willimon has often said, “you cannot very well baptize yourself.”

In a culture that stresses individualism, the church satisfies the human need for community, for shared history and experiences.

And in a world where technology enables millennials to connect only with those who are like-minded, baptism drags us - sometimes kicking and screaming as infants - into the large, dysfunctional and beautiful family of the church.

Confession

“Sin” is not a popular word these days, perhaps because it is so often invoked in the context of judgment and condemnation.

But like all people, millennials need reminding now and then that the hate and violence we observe in the world is also present within ourselves.

We can be too idealistic, too convinced we can change the world from our iPads.

The accountability that comes from participation in a local church gives young Christians the chance to speak openly about our struggles with materialism, greed, gossip, anger, consumerism and pride.

Healing

While the flawed people who make up the church can certainly inflict pain on each other and sometimes on the world, we also engage in the important work of healing.

At their best, local churches provide basements where AA groups can meet, living rooms where tough conversations about racial reconciliation occur, casseroles for the sick and shelter for the homeless.

Millennials who have been hurt by the church may later find healing in it.

Leadership

Like a lot of millennials, I am deeply skeptical of authority - probably to a fault.

But when I interact with people from my church who have a few years and a lot of maturity on me, I am reminded of how cool it is to have a free, built-in mentoring and accountability program just down the street.

We can learn a lot from the faithful who have gone before us, and the church is where we find them.

Communion

One of the few things the modern church has in common with the ancient one is its celebration of the sacred meal— the Eucharist.

There is simply not the space here, nor in many volumes of theology for that matter, to unpack the significance of remembering Jesus through eating bread and drinking wine. But when I left the church, it was Communion I craved the most.

Churches may disagree on exactly how Christ is present in these sacred meals, but we agree that Christ is present. And millennials, too, long for that presence.

There are some days when the promise of Communion is the only thing that rouses me from bed on Sunday morning. I want a taste of that mystery.

Confirmation

Many churches practice a rite of initiation, sometimes called confirmation.

Theologian Lauren Winner, in her book “Still: Notes on a Mid-Faith Crisis,” quotes a friend who said:

“What you promise when you are confirmed is not that you will believe this forever. What you promise when you are confirmed is that that is the story you will wrestle with forever.”

The church, at its best, provides a safe place in which to wrestle with this story we call the Gospel.

Union with Christ

Those who follow Jesus long for the day when their communion with him becomes complete, and Jesus promises this will happen through the church.

The apostle Paul compared this union to a marriage. Jesus describes it as a banquet.

No matter what the latest stats or studies say, Christians believe the future of the church is secure and not even “the gates of hell” will prevail against it.

As much as I may struggle to fit in sometimes, as much as I doubt, question and fight for reforms, I am a part of this church, through good times and bad, for better or worse.

The astute reader will notice that each of these points corresponds loosely with a sacrament—baptism, confession, the anointing of the sick, holy orders, communion, confirmation and marriage.

Some would say there are many others. We could speak of the sacrament of the Word or the washing of feet.

But even where they are not formally observed, these sacraments are present in some form in nearly every group of people who gather together in the name of Jesus.

They connect us to our faith through things we can eat, touch, smell and feel. And they connect us with one another.

They remind us, as writer and Episcopal priest Sara Miles put it, that “You can’t be a Christian by yourself.”

This is why I haven’t given up on the church, and I suspect why it hasn't given up on me.

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 her.

Evans has written two previous posts for CNN's Belief Blog: Why millennials are leaving the church; and Not all religious convictions are written in stone.

- CNN Religion Editor

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Church • evangelicals • Faith • Opinion • United States

soundoff (4,825 Responses)
  1. scanboy

    Sounds more like my college years than any church I attended - except for that "Union with Christ" bit that can and do do without.

    August 4, 2013 at 9:25 am |
  2. Ralph_in_FL

    What I notice about this board is that a lot of the people posting just keep endlessly repeating the same posts.

    August 4, 2013 at 9:22 am |
    • E before I

      Yes, gets very boring after a while.

      August 4, 2013 at 9:25 am |
    • Alias

      Yes.
      That is a sign of a neurosis. It affests believers and nonbelievers equally.
      Almost like we are all people first, and religuos or not second .....

      August 4, 2013 at 10:26 am |
  3. Michael Heath

    Last week Rachel wrote something I thought was good. This week not so much. I don't think millennials or any one else who has experienced a loss of faith in traditional religion, need the church.
    -The problem with the church – and it really isn't the church's fault- is that, as Tillich used to say, the major religious or spiritual symbols are broken, i.e. they no longer conduct the transcendent experience or meaning they once did. The supernatural mind set of 1st century does not fit with our modern scientific outlook for many folks and trying to make it fit, de-mythologizing – as Bultmann put it, doesn't work that well.
    -The teachings of Jesus that God is love, that we should love one another and that the redeemed life is only found in community are still true but... today we lack meaningful sacraments to convey the transcendent meaning and the reassuring message that the supernatural view once did.
    -I don't say these things with joy. Today's spiritual experience seems to be fractured. Some take solace in psychology and others in political activism. Neither are spiritually satisfying. But what choice is there. It is very painful , as Gabriel Vahanian once wrote, "to wait without idols", but that is, if we are honest, where a lot of us are.
    -I believe that, whether we are religious or not, we all, as a species, long, not so much for the 2nd Coming, but for the re-emergence of a powerful spiritual symbol which will calm our anxiety and convey a sense of hope and confidence that life, including my own life, has an ultimate meaning and purpose which extends beyond our three score and ten.

    August 4, 2013 at 9:22 am |
    • Pastor Hairier Palms

      It's better to struggle through life with what's known than what's not known.

      August 4, 2013 at 9:36 am |
  4. el flaco

    The desire for the religious experience is a product of human evolution. Biologists think that it made members of the primitive village or tribe more prone to cooperation and more obedient to the tribal leadership.

    August 4, 2013 at 9:19 am |
    • Pastor Hairier Palms

      From lots of spare time for desire and to wander and wonder; spare time after agriculture. The lonely electron explains nearly everything we see around us, yet people are not satisfied with that answer.

      August 4, 2013 at 9:46 am |
      • Sherry Austin

        Oh, thou art wise!

        August 4, 2013 at 10:34 am |
  5. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things ,

    August 4, 2013 at 9:09 am |
    • Alex Cardinal

      I'm sorry, but you can't honestly say atheism is bad for anyone if you haven't experienced it firsthand for yourself, or can't explain why it's bad from a secular, logical perspective.

      August 4, 2013 at 9:17 am |
      • Javier Sanchez

        It is bad. you start acting like you know everything. you start judging everyone else because you have the truth everyone else has faith. We look at everything that Christians do bad but not other religions which is weird. And we find a whole in our hearts because everything taste bland. So yes I am glad I am not that anymore and I found faith in a God that teaches love. If you go to a church and you leave because of someone or a group of people you are not a Christian. Christians follow Christ not a pastor, pope, friends, enemy, only Christ

        August 4, 2013 at 9:29 am |
        • What is going on? FREEDOM

          Sanchez we go after all religious groups and we go after those specifically that try to force their views unto others. As of right now, the Christian groups in the United States are trying to force their views into law. That is why we are targeting your group specifically.

          August 4, 2013 at 9:33 am |
    • Ralph_in_FL

      Why do you keep endlessly repeating the same post? Maybe you should pray for some imagination.

      August 4, 2013 at 9:18 am |
      • el flaco

        We all need to keep repeating the idea that religion has outlived its usefulness in human history

        August 4, 2013 at 9:20 am |
      • Observer

        The greatest gifts to mankind have begun with prayer.

        August 4, 2013 at 9:26 am |
        • Damocles

          You simply can not say stuff like that when I am drinking. It burns my nose as I laugh and doen't help my keyboard much either.

          August 4, 2013 at 9:31 am |
    • Colin

      When considering that atheists have brutally tortured and murdered more innocent people in the last 100 years than were killed in all previous centuries one might give thought to the Truth that atheism is indeed extremely unhealthy. Unless of course you are a so called atheist and you have no problem with mass murder as a way of life.

      August 4, 2013 at 9:22 am |
      • E before I

        Religion or atheism are not the problem, people are the problem. Both atheists and theists have murdered millions, some in the name of a religion, some for other reasons.

        August 4, 2013 at 9:37 am |
      • What is going on? FREEDOM

        I laugh at you people stealing profile names again. I suggest you actually get an education on the history of this planet before making false statements like you just did.

        August 4, 2013 at 9:40 am |
      • Jim

        Is someone forgetting the crusades, Spanish inquisition, Salem witch hunts?

        August 4, 2013 at 10:13 am |
      • just me.

        Hitler and most of his followers were Christian,that's a fact.How did that work out?His regime and the regime of Mussolini,had the blessing of the RCC.The RCC helped hundreds of Nazis escape after WW2.Stalin was raised in a catholic seminary.One can make the argument that it messed him up pretty good and taught him the value of absolute mind control and intimidation.They all had one thing in common as dictators-God like status.

        August 4, 2013 at 11:24 am |
    • Lou

      Alright Jimeny Cricket, let's sing together now... When you wish upon a star......

      August 4, 2013 at 9:29 am |
    • Observer

      The cricket like the so called atheist sang alone.

      August 4, 2013 at 9:31 am |
    • Nahhhhh

      I've been praying for help with my health problems for over a year. Nothing has changed.

      Now I just tell God to "do whatever the hell you want". That's a prayer that seems to get answered every time.

      August 4, 2013 at 9:54 am |
      • Cpt. Obvious

        Thank you for your honesty. I feel you. To bad more praying people are not so honest.

        August 4, 2013 at 12:01 pm |
    • Sherry Austin

      It can indeed change how you feel, how you handle things. Yes, it can. But that's it. That's all. Nearly every abducted child talked about in the media is found dead, in spite of the combined and desperate prayers of all her family, her church, friends far and wide, and millions reached by the media.

      August 4, 2013 at 10:38 am |
      • just me.

        This will be put down,simply,as Gods mysterious plan for calling his children home.Some plan-some god.

        August 4, 2013 at 11:30 am |
  6. Jonah

    I just had a revelation. This blog is just like real life! We are all born into this world and are influenced by good, positive spirits who suggest into our minds good, positive thoughts and feelings and by evil spirits who introduce into our minds bad, negative thoughts and feelings. We then make a choice about who we are going to listen to and what suggestions we are going to follow. On this blog, the evil spirits are represented by the atheists and pagans who really have no reason to be here since this is a blog about faith in Jesus Christ and none of those people have any faith in Jesus Christ. Evil spirits here should just be ignored just as they should be in life! If anyone came to this blog today seeking spiritual enlightenment and instead was set upon by the evil spirits, may I suggest going to mormon.org instead? You can talk one on one there with good people who will take your questions about life and spirituality seriously and give you answers based on the teachings of the living apostles and prophets! You will find God there..

    August 4, 2013 at 9:01 am |
    • snowboarder

      evil spirits? wow!

      August 4, 2013 at 11:00 am |
    • just me.

      Go to the church,listen to what you want to hear,go home happy.Quite the novel concept...or...find a forum to discuss eternal questions and use reasoning skills to make an educated evaluation of these questions.You may not feel warm and fuzzy as you question your beliefs,but you will be quite satisfied,knowing you are becoming intellectually honest as you question religious dogma,and validity.Do not be afraid to question everything ! C'mon-give it a shot

      August 4, 2013 at 11:43 am |
  7. Understanding atheist

    This women sounds like she is going back to church for the same reason many people do as they get older. She got bored on Sunday and uses her church simply as a mean to communicate with people in the community, ala have some sort of social status with neighbors. How can you support a system of lies and preached hate? Religious people believe without god there would just be chaos and violence, which is just ridiculous, Christianity is just another Phase of worship like Pganism was. eventually more and more of the educated will separate the,sleeves from this stupidity and over time religion was fade. The world as a whole is moving from an age of religion to an age of Science. Live your life with facts not with lies and rumors. Your friendly neighborhood Athiest.

    August 4, 2013 at 8:59 am |
    • Understanding atheist

      Typing on an IPad is harder that I thought. Excuse the typos

      August 4, 2013 at 9:02 am |
      • kimeschroeder

        Yes! Total pain!

        August 4, 2013 at 9:29 am |
      • Cpt. Obvious

        I agree that many churches are just social clubs and that is the reason many people attend church. As far as the "preached hate," many churches only preach/teach the happy, happy, joy, joy parts.

        August 4, 2013 at 11:59 am |
    • ScottLL

      I think it is unfortunate the way you preach hatred and then say that Christians are hateful. If you weren't ignorant of the Bible you would know that Jesus preached love (agape love, not sorge love). You are right it was hard to follow your rant with all of the typos and incorrect words.

      August 4, 2013 at 9:25 am |
    • ScottLL

      Also, regarding science, science does not contradict Christianity, it complements it. Science explains how God created the world, it does not explain why God crated the world.

      August 4, 2013 at 9:28 am |
      • Nahhhhh

        How come Christians think evolution is "a lie straight from the pits of Hell"? Complimentary...

        August 4, 2013 at 9:56 am |
        • ScottLL

          Nahhhh, do you know the difference in the definitions of complementary and complimentary? Since you appear to believe just in science, tell me, where did all of the matter in the universe come from? The Big Bang Theory does not say that the universe was created out of nothing, it just says that it was created in this fashion from matter and energy that existed.

          August 4, 2013 at 10:16 am |
      • Damocles

        @nahhh

        Some are trying to make it fit in with their beliefs..... 'oh, my deity causes evolution, that's its tool on getting things done'. Square pegs in round holes and all of that.

        August 4, 2013 at 9:59 am |
      • just me.

        Actually Scott,science explains specifically,how god did NOT create the world.Simply-when you do not know the answer to a question,just say,"I don't know".You may want to add,"I'll try to find out".Saying,"I know exactly how the world came to be",is egomaniacal,to say the least.Do not pretend to know stuff,it makes you look silly.

        August 4, 2013 at 11:54 am |
    • E before I

      Keep in mind that religions didn't invent themselves, they were invented by human beings. Some had good intentions, some did not. The root of the problem isn't religion, it's the humans that invented religion to begin with.

      August 4, 2013 at 9:33 am |
      • ScottLL

        I only know of one religion where God came and took human form and lived with man, was ridiculed, and crucified by man. After three days rose from the dead and was witnessed as living and walking among people by hundreds of people after he had died. But the most important thing is that he suffered this pain and humiliation for our salvation, not for his own glory.

        August 4, 2013 at 9:53 am |
        • Damocles

          Yes, you have read that story. I've read tons of stories... stories about elves and magic and dwarves and dragons and a singularly dangerous take on the game of soccer. Doesn't mean I think any of it is true.

          August 4, 2013 at 9:57 am |
        • ScottLL

          Damocles, are you saying that anyone is not alive today has been made up because there is no proof that they ever existed. If you read of there existence form multiple sources (both those promoting them and those who don't), do you then believe that they existed? Or are you saying that ignorance is best because it is simplest.

          August 4, 2013 at 10:12 am |
        • Jim

          Scotl, if jesus didn't stay dead, it's not a sacrifice

          August 4, 2013 at 10:15 am |
        • Damocles

          That's not what I said at all now is it?

          Let's look at Star Trek. Tons of books written, tech manuals, blueprints for the various ships, books written by outside sources about the pros and cons of the series. Same thing with Star Wars. Should we take it on faith that these ships, creatures, weapons exist?

          Let's not also forget that some stories written about historical figures take a certain liberty in saying what they actually did/didn't do.

          The story is a decent one, filled with fantasy, heroes, enemies, magic, doom and gloom, but take it for what it is, a collection of stories.

          The bottom line is, strive to be a decent person, know that you are going to fail sometimes and pick yourself up after you fall and try to do better.

          August 4, 2013 at 10:22 am |
        • ScottLL

          Jim that is your opinion that being whipped, mocked, having spikes pounded into your hands and feet isn't a sacrifice. I happen to think that suffering like that is a a sacrifice. I am not sure but you may be saying that death is a sacrifice. To a Christian it is just another event in your eternal Christian life.

          August 4, 2013 at 10:33 am |
        • Damocles

          It may be a sacrifice, but it was an unnecessary one. I find it exceedingly odd that this so powerful thing can never seem to find a better way to relate to its supposed creations other than death and destruction.

          August 4, 2013 at 10:44 am |
        • Jim

          Only know of one story like that? First, you aren't very well read in other religions or you would recognize aspects of Christianity that appeared in earlier religions. Second, your argument that Christianity is true because of the claim of uniqueness is insane. The ancient Egyptian god Horus died and resurrected with gold genital, which you have to admit is pretty unique.... I guess it must be true!

          August 4, 2013 at 10:57 am |
      • LiberaLIowan

        As L. Ron Hubbard once said, "You don't get rich writing science fiction. If you want to get rich, you start a religion."

        August 4, 2013 at 10:03 am |
      • ScottLL

        Damocles, Your example about Star Trek. Did any of these writers and articles that you mention ever say that they saw this space ship or are they all writing tongue in cheek? Regarding your other references to Christ and claiming that they are exaggerations, In the years after Christ died, many Christians were executed because they refused to renounce their belief in Christ. He must have made a huge impact on them for them to give up their lives. Also, that fact that a religion like Islam believes in Jesus the man (but deny that he was part of the triune God) further convinces me that he existed. Or a man like Gandhi acknowledge that Jesus Christ the man existed (even though he did not convert from Hinduism to Christianity) again convince me of Jesus Christ.

        August 4, 2013 at 10:44 am |
        • Damocles

          I can't be entirely sure, I haven't read all the stories to know if someone boldly claims to have seen a ship. I imagine if I dreamed of a USS Enterprise I could claim to have 'seen' the ship, yes?

          People have died for all sorts of beliefs and people that were kooky, your story isn't the first. Also remember that more than a few African animists lost their lives for their beliefs. Are we now going to debate who is right by the number of people willing to sacrifice themselves?

          If personal testimony is all that you require, I daresay that there are books written by people who will be glad to tell you they saw aliens. There, now you have two things to believe in. You are welcome.

          If people saying something is true makes it true for you, then is someone saying that thing is untrue work as well? Say ten people are convinced you did a crime that you know you didn't do, are you going to say those ten are right?

          August 4, 2013 at 10:56 am |
        • Jim

          Throughout history, people have killed and died for their religious and political beliefs. If you use the willingness to die for an idea as the criteria for truth, then you would have to agree there is something to the claim that Mohammed is the final and great prophet of god. If you apply your idea to only Jesus, then its the mother of all confirmation biases.

          August 4, 2013 at 11:08 am |
        • ScottLL

          Damocles, you know that your argument about the USS Enterprise being real doesn't hold water. I just wanted to give you some facts. It is your choice what to do with them. There is a Bible verse that makes reference to throwing pearls to swine, the swine don't appreciate them so don't waste your time.

          August 4, 2013 at 11:11 am |
        • ScottLL

          Jim, Mohammed died of natural causes and did not rise from the dead. I don't follow your logic or comparison.

          August 4, 2013 at 11:15 am |
        • Damocles

          Well, for one thing, I never said the USS Enterprise was real, although it is, it just isn't a space ship.

          You have given no facts, merely your opinion and that's fine, everyone has an opinion. My opinion is that when people finally realize that the only way this species is going to go any further is to get its collective head out of its rear, it will be a great day.

          August 4, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
  8. Vic

    ♰ ♰ ♰ Jesus Christ Is Lord ♰ ♰ ♰

    August 4, 2013 at 8:57 am |
    • snowboarder

      apparently you believe so, but there is no legitimate reason for it.

      August 4, 2013 at 11:28 am |
  9. sandalista

    "Top Eleven Signs You're a Christian:"

    11- You believe in a book (New Testament) that was written 80 years after your Messiah died by men who never met him and who believed the earth was flat and the Sun revolved around the Earth, but continuously deny modern science books.

    10 – You vigorously deny the existence of thousands of gods claimed by other religions, but feel outraged when someone denies the existence of yours.

    9 – You feel insulted and "dehumanized" when scientists say that people evolved from other life forms, but you have no problem with the Biblical claim that we were created from dirt.

    8 – You laugh at polytheists, but you have no problem believing in a Triune God.

    7 – Your face turns purple when you hear of the "atrocities" attributed to Allah, but you don't even flinch when hearing about how God/Jehovah slaughtered all the babies of Egypt in "Exodus" and ordered the elimination of entire ethnic groups in "Joshua" including women, children, and trees!

    6 – You laugh at Hindu beliefs that deify humans, and Greek claims about gods sleeping with women, but you have no problem believing that the Holy Spirit impregnated Mary, who then gave birth to a man-god who got killed, came back to life and then ascended into the sky.

    5 – You are willing to spend your life looking for little loopholes in the scientifically established age of Earth (few billion years), but you find nothing wrong with believing dates recorded by Bronze Age tribesmen sitting in their tents and guessing that Earth is a few generations old.

    4 – You believe that the entire population of this planet with the exception of those who share your beliefs – though excluding those in all rival sects – will spend Eternity in an infinite Hell of Suffering. And yet consider your religion the most "tolerant" and "loving."

    3 – While modern science, history, geology, biology, and physics have failed to convince you otherwise, some idiot rolling around on the floor speaking in "tongues" may be all the evidence you need to "prove" Christianity.

    2 – You define 0.01% as a "high success rate" when it comes to answered prayers. You consider that to be evidence that prayer works. And you think that the remaining 99.99% FAILURE was simply the will of God.

    1 – You actually know a lot less than many atheists and agnostics do about the Bible, Christianity, and church history – but still call yourself a Christian.

    Is god willing to prevent evil, but not able?
    Then he is not omnipotent.
    Is he able, but not willing?
    Then he is malevolent.
    Is he both able and willing?
    Then whence cometh evil?
    Is he neither able nor willing?
    Then why call him god?
    (Epicurus)

    August 4, 2013 at 8:54 am |
    • Rinsewind

      Sigh. You do know that it's possible to be a Christian and not have any of those characteristics, don't you? Please stop painting all Christians with the brush of a narrow, conservative evangelical Protestant viewpoint.

      August 4, 2013 at 9:13 am |
      • Javier Sanchez

        and you stop painting all evangelicals because where is your love of Christ.?

        August 4, 2013 at 9:31 am |
        • midwest rail

          The 3 primary characteristics of contemporary evangelical Christianity are arrogance, condescension, and hatred.

          August 4, 2013 at 9:33 am |
    • Javier Sanchez

      So let me get this straight. If you picked up the Bible and read a verse like one that says love your enemies more do you think you can do that in a matter of minutes. First of all if you read it you would finally accept you are the way the verse says and then you would pray for that change. all that stuff you wrote is typical monkey see monkey do, and if you go by what others or a pope or a priest say to you then you are wrong. Being a Christian means being a follower of Christ. There are many religions out there that have gods but none of them take you to eternal life. A true Christian loves everyone even you. we love you and ask god to forgive you for you don't know. Jesus says the same thing and teaches us that. So what can Science do for you after death? For a true Christian science is a small part of wisdom. In the Bible the book of Job this is before Christopher Columbus and many years old it was revealed the earth was round in one verse. The Pagans , the elite scientist in Europe believed the world was flat. So based on your words I prefer to be a Christian and speak and learn the truth and not some hypothesis based on my words of truth.

      August 4, 2013 at 9:39 am |
      • Pastor Hairier Palms

        The king and the pauper on the street are joined by the common destiny of death. Religions exploit this simple fact to convert the poor first and then after mass scale conversions, the king and the queen go the way of the poor.

        August 4, 2013 at 9:58 am |
      • Jim

        "There are many religions out there that have gods but none of them take you to eternal life"

        Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, and Hinduism all promise an superior eternal existence for their faithful. I would also point out that religions claim to benefit you after death but none have been shown to do so 🙂

        August 4, 2013 at 11:21 am |
    • guest

      sandaista, I have a question for you: why do you bother to post this sort of thing? Your post, at best, is just a hypothetical guess, fairly correct in some points, but way off on others. I’m guessing that these are things that you have observed in a few people you know, or you have garnered in “gossip” which helps you to have confidence in what you prefer to believe. You make accusations without knowing facts. You make judgments based on your emotions. For instance, you accuse God of killing thousands of babies in Egypt without knowing why. This judgment, I believe, is based on your emotions because you don’t know God’s reason for what you view as an atrocity. I do agree that from the human viewpoint that such a catastrophe sounds like the cruelty of an unloving god, but God had his reasons for such action. For one thing, if you read carefully, it wasn’t just babies that died, but the first born, that included adults as well. It is a long explanation, but the Egyptian were contesting God and revered many things including the first born of everything which was considered as belonging to the Pharaoh who was considered to be a god. The Pharaoh was defying God, and God was showing His supreme authority by controlling everything considered sacred to the Egyptians. God had given the Pharaoh nine powerful opportunities to recognize His [God’s] power and the Pharaoh defied Him; drastic measures were in order. God had warned the Egyptians what would happen and they had the choice after so many demonstrations of God’s power to believe and obey or refuse to believe; they too could have, as the Israelites did, put the blood of a slain lamb (symbolic of the messiah to come) on their doorposts and saved their first born. (The same threat of death also applied to the Israelites.) This atrocity could have been avoided. It was a choice. God is not willing that any should perish, but accept Jesus as their Savior and have eternal life. It is a choice. Unfortunately there are many who do not wish to make the right choice, because they too do not wish to submit to God.

      August 4, 2013 at 10:41 am |
  10. sactonana

    The thing that has bothered me about the church these last several years has been their never ending quest to blur the lines between church and state. There is a place for each. However, TO BELIEVE is not the same as TO KNOW, and when religion intrudes on matters of state, whose beliefs are to prevail – the Baptists, the Catholics, the Methodists, the Evangelicals? If you put two religious factions in a room they will disagree. The next thing you know, you have the same thing you have in Iran and other middle eastern countries, one faction fighting another, with the mainstream getting caught in the middle.

    August 4, 2013 at 8:50 am |
    • Rainer Braendlein

      A folk or a people can freely decide to be Christian or secular.

      America says that she is Christian; then she should keep Christian standards including prohibition of gay marriage.

      However, even a majoritarian secular state or people could have no interest in legalizing gayness too much because gayness destroys the foundation of every society: The family.

      August 4, 2013 at 8:59 am |
      • midwest rail

        Nonsense. The percentage of gay people in the population as a whole hasn't changed in forever. Somehow the family unit still exists, as it always has. Don't let facts get in the way of your prejudicial delusions though.

        August 4, 2013 at 9:17 am |
      • Damocles

        Oh, yes! Two people married and raising kids and helping them to become productive members of society. I shudder at the horror of it all.

        August 4, 2013 at 9:23 am |
      • Truth Prevails :-)

        Care to back your false claims about family with stats. Divorce rates are higher amongst hetero couples; children raised by same-sex parents have been shown to do just as well as those raised by hetero couples. What I don't get is the bigotry...LGBT pay taxes; they work; they raise families; they harm no-one by their marriages or unions..the course of history as it stands now is not going to change and soon bigots like you will be a thing of the past...LGBT will soon be as accepted as drinking, so you can either get with the present or be left in the past.

        August 4, 2013 at 9:24 am |
    • LiarPrefails :-}

      Well now we've heard from some unimportant third world hack defending qu eers and its ilk. Big deal, if it had any relevance it would tend to its own backyard.

      August 4, 2013 at 9:29 am |
  11. Rainer Braendlein

    Rachel Held Evans on CNN, June 27th, 2013:

    "Today, I am honored to be the friend of many LGBT people, and I celebrated along with them as Exodus International closed its doors and as the Supreme Court ruled the Defense of Marriage Act unconsti-tutional."

    Unquote.

    Obviously Mrs. Evans supports gay marriage. I don't know how far she is aware of her error. At any rate, gay marriage cannot be supported by the genuine Christian Church in which the Bible emerged. Gayness is condemned by the Old Testament and the New Testament, the consti-tution of the Christian Church. If Mrs. Evans wants to be a memeber of the Christian Church, she has to change her att-itude concerning gay marriage, and to adopt the opinion of the Church or God according to the Bible.

    Gayness is a clear indicator of strong disbelief. Powers of death and destruction have taken hold of the gay person in an extreme way. From the beginning of creation se-xuality had its legal place within the marriage of a man and a woman. Gays tear out se-xuality out of its proper place which is the marriage of a man and a woman. Sodium and chlorin together are Salt which is a very good thing which we urgently need. Yet, sodium or chlorin alone or seperated are poisions. There are things which are only healthy within a certain connection.

    Dear gays, simply observe God's marvellous creation, all the animals, the plants. the moon and the stars, the earth. It is very clear that there must be a creator who has ordered all things. By chance only chaos emerges.

    The first human beings, Adam and Eve, have experienced a Fall; they have degenerated biologically because they forsook the source of life which is God, and subordinated to the powers of death and destruction.

    Even if we become convinced of a loving creator through the creation we have the problem of our sinful flesh or body. We cannot get convinced of God's love alone through the "gospel of Creation" we also need the Gospel of Jesus Christ which is much more powerful, and sacral; it can change us holistically (even biologically).

    Therefore God sacrifced his Son Jesus Christ for us in order to cure us form our maladies (for example gayness), and as an atonement for our sins. The gospel of God's love: God the, Father delivered God, the Son, for our sins, and raised him from the dead for our justification. Believe that and get sacramentally baptized or remember your infant baptism, and you will die for the sin and enter Christ. In Christ you can overcome the lust of your body including gayness or any other sin. Despite this great redemption in Jesus we sin sometimes, and therefore Christ's sacrifice is also an atonement. Yet, don't let us assume that we could be careless because there is an atonement. No, let us keep the faith through denying the lust of our body in Jesus' power daily, and love God and our neighbour.

    http://confessingchurch.worpdress.com

    August 4, 2013 at 8:40 am |
    • Reality

      2. Jesus was an illiterate Jewish peasant/carpenter/simple preacher man who suffered from hallucinations (or “mythicizing” from P, M, M, L and J) and who has been characterized anywhere from the Messiah from Nazareth to a mythical character from mythical Nazareth to a ma-mzer from Nazareth (Professor Bruce Chilton, in his book Rabbi Jesus). An-alyses of Jesus’ life by many contemporary NT scholars (e.g. Professors Ludemann, Crossan, Borg and Fredriksen, ) via the NT and related doc-uments have concluded that only about 30% of Jesus' sayings and ways noted in the NT were authentic. The rest being embellishments (e.g. miracles)/hallucinations made/had by the NT authors to impress various Christian, Jewish and Pagan sects.

      The 30% of the NT that is "authentic Jesus" like everything in life was borrowed/plagiarized and/or improved from those who came before. In Jesus' case, it was the ways and sayings of the Babylonians, Greeks, Persians, Egyptians, Hitt-ites, Canaanites, OT, John the Baptizer and possibly the ways and sayings of traveling Greek Cynics.

      earlychristianwritings.com/

      For added "pizzazz", Catholic theologians divided god the singularity into three persons and invented atonement as an added guilt trip for the "pew people" to go along with this trinity of overseers. By doing so, they made god the padre into god the "filicider".

      Current RCC problems:

      Pedophiliac priests, an all-male, mostly white hierarchy, atonement theology and original sin!!!!

      2 b., Luther, Calvin, Joe Smith, Henry VIII, Wesley, Roger Williams, the Great “Babs” et al, founders of Christian-based religions or combination religions also suffered from the belief in/hallucinations of "pretty wingie thingie" visits and "prophecies" for profits analogous to the myths of Catholicism (resurrections, apparitions, ascensions and immacu-late co-nceptions).

      Current problems:
      Adulterous preachers, pedophiliac clerics, "propheteering/ profiteering" evangelicals and atonement theology,

      August 4, 2013 at 8:42 am |
      • Rainer Braendlein

        The civilized world has accepted Christianity as general religion yet around 300 years after Christ. Were they all idiots?

        Constantine the Great legalized the Christian faith around 300 after Christ through the Edict of Milano. Constantine was not only one of the most powerful men of his time but even very well educated as a Roman Emperor.

        August 4, 2013 at 8:52 am |
        • Fallacy Spotting 101

          Post by 'Rainer Braendlein' contains an instance of the Ad Populum fallacy.

          http://fallacyfiles.org/glossary.html

          August 4, 2013 at 11:05 am |
        • Reality

          Christian Economics/Greed 101:

          The Baptizer drew crowds and charged for the "dunking". The historical Jesus saw a good thing and continued dunking and preaching the good word but added "healing" as an added charge to include free room and board. Sure was better than being a poor peasant but he got a bit too zealous and they nailed him to a tree. But still no greed there.

          Paul picked up the money scent on the road to Damascus. He added some letters and a prophecy of the imminent second coming for a fee for salvation and "Gentilized" the good word to the "big buck" world. i.e. Paul was the first media evangelist!!! And he and the other Apostles forgot to pay their Roman taxes and the legendary actions by the Romans made them martyrs for future greed. Paul was guilty of minor greed?

          Along comes Constantine. He saw the growing rich Christian community and recognized a new tax base so he set them "free". Major greed on his part!!

          The Holy Roman "Empirers"/Popes/Kings/Queens et al continued the money grab selling access to JC and heaven resulting in some of today's richest organizations on the globe i.e. the Christian churches (including the Mormon and Luthern churches) and related aristocracies. Obvious greed!!!

          August 4, 2013 at 12:41 pm |
    • Spam Spotting 101

      Post by Rainer Braendlein is linkspam. Please report abuse to CNN on it by clicking on the link below it.

      August 4, 2013 at 11:07 am |
  12. Rainer Braendlein

    Rachel Held Evans on CNN, June 27th, 2013:

    "Today, I am honored to be the friend of many LGBT people, and I celebrated along with them as Exodus International closed its doors and as the Supreme Court ruled the Defense of Marriage Act unconsti-tutional

    Unquote.

    Obviously Mrs. Evans supports gay marriage. I don't know how far she is aware of her error. At any rate, gay marriage cannot be supported by the genuine Christian Church in which the Bible emerged. Gayness is condemned by the Old Testament and the New Testament, the consti-tution of the Christian Church. If Mrs. Evans wants to be a memeber of the Christian Church, she has to change her att-itude concerning gay marriage, and to adopt the opinion of the Church or God according to the Bible.

    Gayness is a clear indicator of strong disbelief. Powers of death and destruction have taken hold of the gay person in an extreme way. From the beginning of creation se-xuality had its legal place within the marriage of a man and a woman. Gays tear out se-xuality out of its proper place which is the marriage of a man and a woman. Sodium and chlorin together are Salt which is a very good thing which we urgently need. Yet, sodium or chlorin alone or seperated are poisions. There are things which are only healthy within a certain connection.

    Dear gays, simply observe God's marvellous creation, all the animals, the plants. the moon and the stars, the earth. It is very clear that there must be a creator who has ordered all things. By chance only chaos emerges.

    The first human beings, Adam and Eve, have experienced a Fall; they have degenerated biologically because they forsook the source of life which is God, and subordinated to the powers of death and destruction.

    Even if we become convinced of a loving creator through the creation we have the problem of our sinful flesh or body. We cannot get convinced of God's love alone through the "gospel of Creation" we also need the Gospel of Jesus Christ which is much more powerful, and sacral; it can change us holistically (even biologically).

    Therefore God sacrifced his Son Jesus Christ for us in order to cure us form our maladies (for example gayness), and as an atonement for our sins. The gospel of God's love: God the, Father delivered God, the Son, for our sins, and raised him from the dead for our justification. Believe that and get sacramentally baptized or remember your infant baptism, and you will die for the sin and enter Christ. In Christ you can overcome the lust of your body including gayness or any other sin. Despite this great redemption in Jesus we sin sometimes, and therefore Christ's sacrifice is also an atonement. Yet, don't let us assume that we could be careless because there is an atonement. No, let us keep the faith through denying the lust of our body in Jesus' power daily, and love God and our neighbour.

    http://confessingchurch.worpdress.com

    August 4, 2013 at 8:37 am |
    • Reality

      Jesus was an illiterate Jewish peasant/carpenter/simple preacher man who suffered from hallucinations (or “mythicizing” from P, M, M, L and J) and who has been characterized anywhere from the Messiah from Nazareth to a mythical character from mythical Nazareth to a ma-mzer from Nazareth (Professor Bruce Chilton, in his book Rabbi Jesus). An-alyses of Jesus’ life by many contemporary NT scholars (e.g. Professors Ludemann, Crossan, Borg and Fredriksen, ) via the NT and related doc-uments have concluded that only about 30% of Jesus' sayings and ways noted in the NT were authentic. The rest being embellishments (e.g. miracles)/hallucinations made/had by the NT authors to impress various Christian, Jewish and Pagan sects.

      The 30% of the NT that is "authentic Jesus" like everything in life was borrowed/plagiarized and/or improved from those who came before. In Jesus' case, it was the ways and sayings of the Babylonians, Greeks, Persians, Egyptians, Hitt-ites, Canaanites, OT, John the Baptizer and possibly the ways and sayings of traveling Greek Cynics.

      earlychristianwritings.com/

      For added "pizzazz", Catholic theologians divided god the singularity into three persons and invented atonement as an added guilt trip for the "pew people" to go along with this trinity of overseers. By doing so, they made god the padre into god the "filicider".

      Current RCC problems:

      Pedophiliac priests, an all-male, mostly white hierarchy, atonement theology and original sin!!!!

      Luther, Calvin, Joe Smith, Henry VIII, Wesley, Roger Williams, the Great “Babs” et al, founders of Christian-based religions or combination religions also suffered from the belief in/hallucinations of "pretty wingie thingie" visits and "prophecies" for profits analogous to the myths of Catholicism (resurrections, apparitions, ascensions and immacu-late co-nceptions).

      Current problems:
      Adulterous preachers, pedophiliac clerics, "propheteering/ profiteering" evangelicals and atonement theology,

      ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

      August 4, 2013 at 8:43 am |
  13. Rainer Braendlein

    Rachel Held Evans on CNN, June 27th, 2013:

    "Today, I am honored to be the friend of many LGBT people, and I celebrated along with them as Exodus International closed its doors and as the Supreme Court ruled the Defense of Marriage Act unconsti-tutional

    Unquote.

    Obviously Mrs. Evans supports gay marriage. I don't know how far she is aware of her error. At any rate, gay marriage cannot be supported by the genuine Christian Church in which the Bible emerged. Gayness is condemned by the Old Testament and the New Testament, the consti-tution of the Christian Church. If Mrs. Evans wants to be a memeber of the Christian Church, she has to change her att-itude concerning gay marriage, and to adopt the opinion of the Church or God according to the Bible.

    Gayness is a clear indicator of strong disbelief. Powers of death and destruction have taken hold of the gay person in an extreme way. From the beginning of creation se-xuality had its legal place within the marriage of a man and a woman. Gays tear out se-xuality out of its proper place which is the marriage of a man and a woman. Sodium and chlorin together are Salt which is a very good thing which we urgently need. Yet, sodium or chlorin alone or seperated are poisions. There are things which are only healthy within a certain connection.

    Dear gays, simply observe God's marvelous creation, all the animals, the plants. the moon and the stars, the earth. It is very clear that there must be a creator who has ordered all things. By chance only chaos emerges.

    The first human beings, Adam and Eve, have experienced a Fall; they have degenerated biologically because they forsook the source of life which is God, and subordinated to the powers of death and destruction.

    Even if we become convinced of a loving creator through the creation we have the problem of our sinful flesh or body. We cannot get convinced of God's love alone through "gospel of Creation" we also need the Gospel of Jesus Christ which is much more powerful, and sacral; it can change us wholistically (even biologically).

    Therefore God sacrifced his Son Jesus Christ for us in order to cure us form our maladies (for example gayness), and as an atonement for our sins. The gospel of God's love: God the, Father delivered God, the Son, for our sins, and raised him from the death for our justification. Believe that and get sacramentally baptized or remember your infant baptism, and you will die for the sin and enter Christ. In Christ you can overcome the lust of your body including gayness or any other sin. Despite these great redemption in Jesus we sin sometimes, and therefore Christ's sacrifice is also an atonement. Yet, don't let us assume that we could be careless because there is an atonement. No, let us keep the faith through denying the lust of our body in Jesus' power, and love God and our neighbour.

    http://confessingchurch.worpdress.com

    August 4, 2013 at 8:28 am |
    • not so fast

      Dont look now Rainer but here comes 2 guys with a big net....

      August 4, 2013 at 8:33 am |
    • Reality

      Jesus was an illiterate Jewish peasant/carpenter/simple preacher man who suffered from hallucinations (or “mythicizing” from P, M, M, L and J) and who has been characterized anywhere from the Messiah from Nazareth to a mythical character from mythical Nazareth to a ma-mzer from Nazareth (Professor Bruce Chilton, in his book Rabbi Jesus). An-alyses of Jesus’ life by many contemporary NT scholars (e.g. Professors Ludemann, Crossan, Borg and Fredriksen, ) via the NT and related doc-uments have concluded that only about 30% of Jesus' sayings and ways noted in the NT were authentic. The rest being embellishments (e.g. miracles)/hallucinations made/had by the NT authors to impress various Christian, Jewish and Pagan sects.

      The 30% of the NT that is "authentic Jesus" like everything in life was borrowed/plagiarized and/or improved from those who came before. In Jesus' case, it was the ways and sayings of the Babylonians, Greeks, Persians, Egyptians, Hitt-ites, Canaanites, OT, John the Baptizer and possibly the ways and sayings of traveling Greek Cynics.

      earlychristianwritings.com/

      For added "pizzazz", Catholic theologians divided god the singularity into three persons and invented atonement as an added guilt trip for the "pew people" to go along with this trinity of overseers. By doing so, they made god the padre into god the "filicider".

      Current RCC problems:

      Pedophiliac priests, an all-male, mostly white hierarchy, atonement theology and original sin!!!!

      Luther, Calvin, Joe Smith, Henry VIII, Wesley, Roger Williams, the Great “Babs” et al, founders of Christian-based religions or combination religions also suffered from the belief in/hallucinations of "pretty wingie thingie" visits and "prophecies" for profits analogous to the myths of Catholicism (resurrections, apparitions, ascensions and immacu-late co-nceptions).

      Current problems:
      Adulterous preachers, pedophiliac clerics, "propheteering/ profiteering" evangelicals and atonement theology,

      August 4, 2013 at 8:36 am |
    • Damocles

      Ahhhhh.....

      'Dear gays, know that there is a creator of everything, but it didn't create you'. 'Look to nature, but ignore that there are animals that practice this lifestyle'.

      Ignore the fact that the all-powerful one could have just made salt and not two poisons that make up salt.

      August 4, 2013 at 8:49 am |
    • Sherry Austin

      What Jesus said about DIVORCE. What Jesus said about DIVORCE. What Jesus said about divorce.

      August 4, 2013 at 10:31 am |
    • Attack of the 50 Foot Magical Underwear

      Rainer, you clearly have no comprehension of the real world, and of real people. Try growing up, and opening your eyes, and joining the human race.

      August 4, 2013 at 12:59 pm |
  14. S.

    You don't need a church to feel part of a community, and you don't need God to have the desire to do nice things for your other people. You want to feel part of a community and make a difference? Become a teacher. Volunteer at a homeless shelter. Vote to raise property levees that pay for cops and schools. Start a recycling drive to clean up your neighborhood for future generations. These are just a few examples that come to mind off the top of my head. The more time you spend in a church casting yourself on the mercy of the Almighty, the less time you spend working on things that really matter.

    August 4, 2013 at 8:28 am |
    • tykobratsche

      But you do need God to make something out of nothing. We work with clay, and something, someone, made clay from nothing but a word. Amazing. Worthy of wonder, and yes, praise.

      August 4, 2013 at 8:57 am |
      • lerianis

        tykobratsche, exactly. Mankind may not have the power to create things out of nothing YET on the scale of planets and life, but in the far future I am certain beyond a shadow of a doubt, actually beyond any doubt that we WILL get there if we survive that long.

        August 4, 2013 at 8:59 am |
      • Damocles

        And you need some type of over-deity to create the deity and some type of over-over-deity to create the over-deity. You can not say that you can't make something from nothing and then turn around and say you can.

        August 4, 2013 at 9:09 am |
  15. Mike

    Organized religion has a LLLLOOONNNGGGG way to go before I'm convinced it is anything more than a right-wing social club whose members can deduct their dues from their taxes. The help vs. harm ledger is way out of balance in favor of the latter.

    August 4, 2013 at 8:27 am |
  16. Chuck

    "And in a world where technology enables millennials to connect only with those who are like-minded, baptism drags us – sometimes kicking and screaming as infants – into the large, dysfunctional and beautiful family of the church."

    Text book indoctrination....

    August 4, 2013 at 8:23 am |
  17. Lou

    Let me get this straight. To be considered a good person I have to get wet, tell complete strangers all my business, except leadership from groups that have been running things into the ground for the last thousand years, shrink my social circle to only include said people and follow blindingly the 3 paragraphs of philosophy of a man that lived 2000 years ago from a book that was constructed to empower a Roman emperor?

    August 4, 2013 at 8:18 am |
    • Colin

      No. You have no concept of what a relationship with God is all about.

      August 4, 2013 at 8:22 am |
      • Lou

        You can't deal with the way I pray....for me work is prayer, with my own hands I make my future....

        August 4, 2013 at 8:31 am |
    • devins

      Nope, that nonsensical diatribe has no relation at all to Chrisitianity.

      August 4, 2013 at 8:22 am |
      • Lou

        Read it again without your church apologist goggles....

        August 4, 2013 at 8:36 am |
        • devins

          Read it a second time, still nonsense.

          August 4, 2013 at 8:57 am |
        • Lou

          still got those goggles on though....

          August 4, 2013 at 9:04 am |
      • Colin

        Goggles or no its still bull sh it.

        August 4, 2013 at 9:13 am |
        • Lou

          BS? Which one of us believes in talking snakes?

          August 4, 2013 at 9:25 am |
    • not so fast

      Well said LOU.....

      August 4, 2013 at 8:47 am |
  18. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things.

    August 4, 2013 at 8:16 am |
    • lerianis

      No more than positive thinking in general changes things.

      August 4, 2013 at 8:29 am |
    • Lou

      prayer = spell casting

      August 4, 2013 at 8:29 am |
    • Mike

      It's five minutes of your life you could have spent more productively. It changes things to the extent you're now five minutes older with all the same problems.

      August 4, 2013 at 8:30 am |
  19. tykobratsche

    Sigh. I guess it's not up to us who will embrace Jesus and who won't. He came into my life at I time I really needed purpose and sustainance in my life, and his message of serving one another for the love of one another and the greater good as a path to eternal life is good enough for me to live by. I love science and technoogy, but that's not where I get my hope.

    August 4, 2013 at 8:11 am |
    • M

      I wonder. Did you have an experience like the geneticist on the Human Genome Project? Did you see three frozen waterfalls and then have a religious experience? Your human nature has more strength than you give it credit for, you might be surprised just how capable you are with human morals.

      August 4, 2013 at 8:30 am |
  20. not so fast

    It is SO OBVIOUS that the "faithful" need the church down the street to keep reaffirming their neurotic belief system....and the plethora of inconsistencies therein.... Imagine the time and energy and money wasted...mind boggling

    August 4, 2013 at 8:10 am |
    • lerianis

      Exactly. Religion wastes a lot of time that would be better spent on self-improvement, enjoying one's life, etc.

      August 4, 2013 at 8:32 am |
      • Mark

        More comments indicating it's all about you. It's not self gratifyer.

        August 4, 2013 at 8:36 am |
        • Damocles

          Most people lead a life of self-improvement or self-gratification. Whether your idea of these is giving to the poor and helping out, or going to the gym to work on your physique, it all amounts to 'this makes me feel good'.

          August 4, 2013 at 8:40 am |
        • not so fast

          yes thats why I volunteer alot of my weekends to various animal rescue groups.....your so predictable remark is just another desperate attempt to claim some sort of moral or personal superiority....how typical and forgettable....

          August 4, 2013 at 8:44 am |
        • Mark

          Apparently not forgettable or you would not have felt a need to respond. Also @Dammed, I work out so I stay healthy so I am not a burden on my kids or society. Gluttons, not so much. Wake up to your selfish leanings.

          August 4, 2013 at 8:57 am |
        • Damocles

          For someone who proclaims so much hostility from the other side, I'd have thought you would have gone with something other than Dammed.... which makes no sense anyway.... maybe you meant Damned?

          Ok, so you work out to not be a burden, but there is a part of you that is satisfied in the results. And who said anything about gluttony? It is not selfish to feel good about helping others, or even to help yourself.

          August 4, 2013 at 9:06 am |
        • Lou

          I rather believe in Humanity rather then deities.....

          August 4, 2013 at 9:09 am |
        • Damocles

          @Lou

          Agreed. While my good feelings towards humanity wax and wane, I do think that we will get it figured out one day. Sooner rather than later would be better though....

          August 4, 2013 at 9:12 am |
        • Mark

          If your helping others to feel good, then the result is positive, however it s not pure.

          August 4, 2013 at 9:32 am |
        • Damocles

          If I am helping someone simply because it is the right thing to do then, yes, it is pure.

          August 4, 2013 at 9:37 am |
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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.