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August 24th, 2013
08:40 AM ET

Should Christianity be so boring?

Opinion by Jon Acuff, Special to CNN

(CNN) - No one has ever accused us Christians of being fun.

No one has ever said we are a laugh-filled group.

No atheist has ever said, “I might not love Jesus, but his followers sure know how to party!”

And yet, in my favorite story in the Bible we actually see Jesus paint the opposite picture.

If you’re a Christian, you’ve heard the Parable of the Prodigal Son in the Gospel of Luke referenced in approximately 42 million sermons. If you’ve missed it though, allow me to summarize.

A young son said to his dad, who represents God, “I want my inheritance.” This was the cultural equivalent of saying, “I wish you were dead!” The father gives him the money. The son immediately runs off to the Jersey shore and fist pumps the night away with 4 Loko and Skrillex. [Not a direct translation.]

After squandering all the money and awakening in a pig pen, the son devises a plan. He will come home, apologize and throw himself at the mercy of the father. His greatest hope is that the father will let him be a servant. He can’t even imagine getting to keep the title “son.”

He comes home expecting punishment, but instead something weird happens.

The father sees him from a distance and sprints toward him. He runs toward him and embraces him. Before the son can even get his whole apology out, the father has already started planning the last thing he expected.

A party.

Instead of punishment he gets a party.

The idea that God fixes problems with parties is crazy.

Who does that?

Life doesn’t work that way. Imagine that you messed up at work. Your boss called you in and said, “Johnson you lost our biggest account! You just cost this company more than 3 million dollars. You know what that makes me want to do? Throw you a party!”

Or think about this in the context of a marriage. Have you ever had an argument with your spouse? Not a fake argument but one that lands you on the couch overnight.

You come into the kitchen and your wife is doing that “mad dishwashing” move we all do when we’re upset. Just power scrubbing pots and pans with a vengeance, mumbling the entire time.

You approach her slowly and say, “Heyyyy baby, how do you feel this morning?” Without looking at you, she takes a deep breath and says, “You really hurt my feelings. Last night, you really surprised me by what you did. My mom was right about you. I’m so angry and disappointed. This whole thing makes me want to get an inflatable bounce house and throw a huge celebration in your honor!”

That would be ludicrous.

Our worst mistakes don’t end in parties, but in this story in the Bible, it did.

When given the opportunity to talk to a group of people, the picture Jesus drew of his Father was of a party giver; someone who met sinners with welcome home banners.

What if Christians were like that?

What if churches became the place where failures found new beginnings?

What if we were known for our parties, not for our Pharisees?

It all feels a little crazy, but I don’t think it’s impossible.

Christians should offer hope in exchange for hurt, new in exchange for old, parties in exchange for pain.

Are we there yet?

Nope, we’ve got a long way to go. We’ve still got a lot of things to work through, a lot of progress we have to make.

But when you think about the prodigal son story, I hope you will remember something.

Two people moved.

One walked.

One ran.

And we prodigals are the walkers.

We still have a running God.

And he is ready to throw a party.

Jon Acuff is a keynote speaker and the author of four books including The New York Times best-seller, START. Acuff is also the author of the popular blog, Stuff Christians Like.net.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Jon Acuff

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Church • Opinion

soundoff (4,711 Responses)
  1. Lionly Lamb

    People oh people... It is not God that one should be searching for... It is the kingdom of God that all of us should be seeking...

    Mat 6:33 "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. "

    August 27, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
  2. Niknak

    Hey, we were talking about believers having issues with soccer and vegans, and a fundie I work with said that after reading Genesis, he has concluded that god meant us to be vegetarians.
    So he actually applauded my choice of food that I eat.
    But he said this in private and that he could never do it because it would not go over we'll with his family and was just to hard to do.

    Isn't that funny?!?

    He said it was god's design, and he believers in following god, but won't because of fear of being ostracized and because it is too hard to go against the grain.

    I won't "out" him to our coworkers, but what am I to make of that?

    Must really su ck to be a believer.

    August 27, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
    • AE

      Of course, if that is how one believer believes and lives his life, that must be how all believers live.

      I'm sure you can find examples of atheists, agnostics, vegans, carnivores, democrats, republicans that do the same exact kind of thing. It is more of a human condition, than a believer's condition, in my opinion.

      August 27, 2013 at 3:09 pm |
      • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

        That's certainly true.

        August 27, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
      • Honey Badger Don't Care

        That's just cafeteria christianity. Take the good parts and leave out the parts you dont want. They all do it.

        August 27, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      Jesus ate fish, so that seems strange (pescetarians aren't vegetarians). It's similar to when religious people say that you shouldn't drink alcohol. I just point to Jesus and his love of Hebrew vino.

      August 27, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      If animals weren't meant to be eaten... they shouldn't be made out of tasty tasty meat...

      August 27, 2013 at 3:22 pm |
      • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

        That sounds like theist logic although for once, I ain't arguing. I'll bow down to Mecca if it results in the consumption of a rare ribeye steak.

        August 27, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
        • Niknak

          Cannibals, the lot of ya.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:36 pm |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          Medium rare... and some bratwurst (piggy goodness) on the side with German curry ketchup...

          August 27, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          I defy anybody to look at this and not get a hard-on.

          [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kT_gzobKtok&w=640&h=360]

          August 27, 2013 at 3:43 pm |
        • Johnny

          I'll take a ribeye, and if it is medium-rare then it is overcooked.

          August 27, 2013 at 4:07 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      I thought Jesus said to scorn all people who play soccer and eat wabbit food...

      August 27, 2013 at 3:38 pm |
      • Niknak

        His followers sure take that tact which is why I am never included in the reindeer games.

        August 27, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
        • Johnny

          No, it is ok to play soccer when you are young, but once you are old enough for football, soccer becomes a communist sport.

          August 27, 2013 at 4:08 pm |
    • Doobs

      It makes as much sense as an acquaintance of mine (I don't know what her stance on deities is) who claims she's vegan, but it's okay for her to eat chicken, because "chickens are ugly, but cows are cute".

      August 28, 2013 at 2:28 pm |
  3. Dyslexic doG

    Jesus of Nazareth was just David Koresh 2000 years earlier. A sociopathic conman with a good story and lots of charisma. All this foolishness, without a shred of proof, has sprung up from there.

    utter, mind numbing nonsense.

    August 27, 2013 at 2:53 pm |
    • Niknak

      Difference is that David Koresh existed, and Jesus did not.

      August 27, 2013 at 2:56 pm |
      • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

        He probably did.

        August 27, 2013 at 2:59 pm |
        • Niknak

          Probably ain't definitely big D.

          The Romans were sticklers for keeping records, and I have not seen any evidence in their records of his name or actions.

          Plus, he is too much like previous gods from the region.

          Dude was created to make the scam better.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:08 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          All those extras (the whole Ra and Mithras stuff) were likely added after the fact. It's likely that there was a preacher called Yeshua who p!issed off the wrong people.

          I never said definitely. It was you who said he did not exist, I merely said it was a probability. Stating any definite answer on the subject is pointless unless one has an agenda.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
        • Niknak

          I can go along with the whole concept of some guy named Jesus miffn off the wrong folks and getting strung up, then they added all the stuff from the previous myths to flesh out the scam more, pun intended.

          As you said, no point arguing it as there is no evidence and we may never know.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:34 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          I gotta agree with Dave on this one.
          I think the backstory is made up – the whole yarn about His birth has too many inconsistencies to be true (for example, there was no census at the time the Bible posits and citizens did NOT have to journey back to their places of birth to be taxed and counted).
          But I can believe there was a radical Rabbi who got fed up with the officious, beurocratic BS of organized religion and endeavoured to spread the Hebrew God to the gentiles, incurring the wrath of those with a vested interest in keeping it close to their chests.
          And back then, the Jewish world had Messiah fever! In and around the time of Christ, there were a number of "credible" claimiants to the Messiah ti/tle like Simon of Peraea, Athronges, Menahem ben Judah, Vespasian, Simon bar Kokhba, etc.
          In time, the feats of celebrities become mythologized (ie: King Gilgamesh of Uruk, Mohammad, Selassie, et al) – most often by those early followers who understand the kind of PR needed to spread "the good word".

          August 27, 2013 at 3:43 pm |
    • AE

      What was the con? Didn't Jesus honestly admit that if you followed his ways that the world would probably hate you. And you might end up dying like he did?

      What did Jesus take from these people that he conned? What did he con them out of?

      August 27, 2013 at 3:02 pm |
      • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

        Fish, bread and wine.

        August 27, 2013 at 3:03 pm |
        • AE

          Good point. 🙂

          One of the first things Jesus asked his disciples after being resurrected: do you have any snacks?
          Luke 24:41

          August 27, 2013 at 3:06 pm |
      • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

        Jesus wasn't the con, it was those that made the claims of his divinity that were the cons.

        August 27, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
        • AE

          So, follow Jesus. Not other men or women. Got it.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:28 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          But why follow him when the main reason for following him was part of the con?

          August 27, 2013 at 3:34 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @AE
          A lot of us wish that The Jefferson Bible had been widely adopted.
          Your second president was a smart dude – he cut out all the supernatural chicanery and left nothing but Christ's message.
          One can make fun of Leviticus and Revelation all day long, but it's hard to find fault with the Sermon on the Mount.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:35 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          The Sermon on the Mount was a bunch of pinko crap. Poor people smell and my cheek is not for turning the other way.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:39 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @Dave
          What you need is a copy of Schlafly's "Consevative Bible".
          He took out all the namby pamby liberal stuff and left a good ol' 'Murican kinda Jesus.
          As if Christ would ever use a commie word like "comrade"!

          P.S. – If you haven't already, go visit conservapedia.com
          A high density, industrial cattle farm has less BS than that site

          August 27, 2013 at 3:48 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          I hate his commandeering of the word conservative. I'm conservative and I'm not a Christian fundamentalist. RationalWiki is guilty of the same thing though. I'm rational (well, relatively speaking) and I'm not a pinko liberal.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:53 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          I'm Canadian, living in a city where middle-class white men are literally a minority.
          We have the world's biggest Gay Pride Festival in July. This year, a million people attended. You should've seen the party the year gay marriage was legalized!
          I love me my socialized medicine and my country's lack of handguns (though we have more rifles per capita than the US).
          Joe McCarthy would have black listed me and all of my neighbours.

          August 27, 2013 at 4:06 pm |
        • Johnny

          Doc, I agree that John Adams was a smart man, but I am not sure what that point had to do with Jefferson.

          August 27, 2013 at 4:10 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          I mentioned that I'm Canadian, right?
          He was your 2nd VP and 3rd President.
          Close enough for this Canuck, eh.

          August 27, 2013 at 4:18 pm |
        • Johnny

          Oh, Canada Eh?

          August 27, 2013 at 4:38 pm |
    • fred

      You cannot deny the power of God !
      -written into our constitution is protection so we can give our testimony in public
      -No U.S. president has or can be elected that does not pretend to believe or actually believe in God.
      -God exists for the majority of the world.
      -The Bible instantly reveals the heart of the reader
      -Everyone decides God is or is not
      -Lives are transformed in the hundreds of millions by the power of God (real or imagined) every year.

      August 27, 2013 at 4:01 pm |
      • Johnny

        God has no power. That wasn't very hard at all.

        August 27, 2013 at 4:39 pm |
      • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

        None of that speaks to the power of god, those are all symptoms of the delusions of god, except for the freedom of religious belief which is a basic right of any society that elevates individual freedom.

        August 27, 2013 at 9:03 pm |
  4. Frank

    Christianity is filth.

    August 27, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      No, not really.

      August 27, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
      • Frank

        I checked, and it is. It is the source of much suffering in this world. It is more damaging than drugs or alcohol.

        August 27, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          No, it isn't.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:39 pm |
        • You're almost there

          As a drug and an alcohol, I am offended.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:39 pm |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          How can you be a 'drug and an alcohol'? did you forget to type additional letters and words?

          August 27, 2013 at 2:45 pm |
      • Frank

        Tell that to victims of the pedophiles the catholic church protected.

        August 27, 2013 at 2:40 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          That was done by people, not a religious ideology.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
        • Frank

          The coverup was justified by ideology. There are not too many professions where your boss would cover up your pedophilia.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          How was the cover-up justified by ideology, unless proof is uncovered that an acting pope was directly involved in a cover-up, in which case it could be deemed as ideological over papal infallibility?

          Also, for the record, Catholicism and Christianity aren't synonymous.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:52 pm |
        • truthprevails1

          Dave is right. Pedophiles tend to seek out areas where there is easy access to children, thus it could be your most trusted neighbor or the owner of your local store.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:57 pm |
        • Frank

          The previous Pope was involved with the cover up. You really have no idea what I'm talking about do you? You should read up on it before posting. Pedophiles were transferred from location to location, molesting thousands children.

          Catholics make up one of the largest and oldest blocks of Christianity.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:00 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Was Joe Rat involved in a cover-up while he was pope?

          August 27, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Ratzinger authored the "Crimen Sollicitationis" while he was head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
          It is that docu/ment which outlines how the RCC handles accusations of se.xual impropriety against clergy.
          Not only was the doc.ument itself Top Secret for decades, it explictly stated that anybody involved in this type of investigation, including the accuser and potential witnesses, are sworn to secrecy regarding any and all details, upon penalty of excommunication.

          And Papal Infallibility only applies in the rare instances when a Pope speak "ex-cathedra" – something that hasn't happened in quite some time.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:21 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Exactly, so it was men, not an ideology, that were to blame.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:23 pm |
        • Rascal

          No, he was an accomplice to JPII, who is now burning in he11.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:24 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          No, he isn't.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:26 pm |
  5. bostontola

    Science is dumb. It classifies animals that are warm-blooded, and have fur, and their babies are born alive, and a baby lives on its mother’s milk, as mammals. Bats do all those things, but bats are clearly birds as the bible instructs us. The bible is never wrong.

    August 27, 2013 at 2:32 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      LOLOLOL

      August 27, 2013 at 2:50 pm |
    • Niknak

      Yeah I don't get that either.

      And those dumb scientists claim whales are mammals too, even though the bible clearly says Jonah was swallowed by a fish.

      Science sure is dumb.

      August 27, 2013 at 2:52 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Those stinking scienticians tried to tell me that neither snakes nor foliage have vocal chords.

      August 27, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Scooped one out of the pool the other day and hung it up under the porch so it could dry out. Looks like a mouse with wings more than a bird.

      August 27, 2013 at 4:20 pm |
  6. Lawrence of Arabia

    I give up... Every single post that I try to type is getting nixed by CNN. There's no swearing in them, no insults, no "controversial" words... Nothing. Oh, well. I've got to get back to writing technical manuals anyway. Y'all have fun.

    August 27, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      Poor leisure suit Larry...

      August 27, 2013 at 2:30 pm |
    • fred

      Cut you posts in half or quarter then post. You will find that offensive word. For me software and documents and special trip me up (ftw, cum and spec)

      August 27, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
    • fred

      oops special is ok it is despicable that has a spic in it.

      August 27, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
    • Cpt. Obvious

      I've always wanted to be a technical writer. Is your pay decent? Is your company hiring?

      August 27, 2013 at 8:55 pm |
  7. Blessed are the Cheesemakers

    ***Your argument is that there are religious scientists that believe in an earth that is billions of years old therefore I should be able to produce scientist that aren't religious which can belief in a young earth. I would say that the two are not the same since the secular world view has taken over education, therefore many good intentioned Christians try to bend their beliefs to the world in an attempt to compromise.***

    Oh come on...that is a huge rationalization for your acceptence of bronze age myth.

    ***However there is not a naturalists that needs to compromise.***

    Exactly, so since they don't need to compromise there is a lack of bias and if scientific information lead to the conclusion that the Bible is more accurate you should be able to find ONE that is not religious and agrees with you. Your willfull ignorance is illuminating.

    ***Bottomline is the Bible doesn't tell us how old the Earth is, we get a rough idea and it does not support billions of years.So we can either bend science or seek the truth in science.***

    Right again, so you admit you bend science for your religious purpose to fit your conclusion...

    ***I can tell you it goes against the teachings of God to lie, so that leaves the latter option.***

    That is a false dicotomy. There is aother options, they actually believe the lie and therefore they are not "lying"...or they are just plane wrong. But how can we know if they are right or wrong? By testing it, but creationism assumes the conclusion so any information that leads away is thrown out.....ummm that is the definition of "bias".

    ***I graduated with a science degree and after reviewing both sides of the argument I side with the Creationists. You side with evolutionists. We both claim truth. ****

    You should sue your school for failing to provide you with a proper science education....let me guess...you are an engineer...

    ***Neither claims are testable.***

    You just lied. What happened to your religion being against lying? I wish you would stop.

    August 27, 2013 at 2:08 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      I take it as a rule to be skeptical whenever someone says 'science degree' without specifying which area of science.

      August 27, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
    • bostontola

      What do you have against engineers? They are highly trained in math and science and use the scientific method in their job.

      August 27, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
      • Lucifer's Evil Twin

        I like how they drive the trains around and around... like on the T!

        August 27, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
      • Niknak

        Unless they are believers Batswana, then they throw all that scientific method stuff in the trash when Sunday comes.
        I know as many of the believers I work with have engineering degrees.

        One of them said that proof of god is because water rises when it freezes.
        That proves that god designed it that way or else the oceans would freeze over and all life would die.

        I didn't even know how to start in rebutting that.
        Impossible to argue with the insane, regardless of them being engineeres.

        August 27, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
        • bostontola

          Of course I never said being an engineer makes a person immune from stupidity (or any other undesirable trait), only that it shouldn't be used as an example of someone who doesn't understand science.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
        • You're almost there

          Probably got their degree from Florida.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:36 pm |
        • Niknak

          I know that is what you meant big B.
          Just throwing out there that even scientists can use science to advance us, but then step outside of science to justify their myth if the happen to also be a believer.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:43 pm |
        • Niknak

          Why Mostly Not There, are science degrees from Florida's schools inferior?

          August 27, 2013 at 2:49 pm |
        • You're almost there

          @Niknak

          I can't speak on the inferiority of science degrees as that is kind of a broad term, but engineers from those schools tend to have a more difficult time passing state licensing exams when compared to other programs across the country. Of course in the end it depends on the abilities of the individual students.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:57 pm |
      • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

        I have no issues with engineers per se boston, I just have noticed if someone says they are a scientist and also says they are a Young Earth Creationist....they are most likely an engineer.

        August 27, 2013 at 8:50 pm |
  8. You're almost there

    I have an idea. I'm going to go on a belief blog and defecate all over other people's beliefs by insulting the ENTIRE beilef population rather than the few who actually irritate me, because I'm too afraid to do it in real life to people's faces. I'm afraid that if I do it to their faces, they won't like me anymore. But you know what? So what if I'm rude, it's their fault they don't like me rudeness – I'm perfect and all knowing, after all.

    August 27, 2013 at 1:51 pm |
    • Løki

      Schauen Sie, andere dumm christian ... willkommen

      August 27, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
    • Doobs

      I have an idea. I'm going to go on a belief blog and defecate all over other people's non-beliefs by insulting the ENTIRE non-beilef population rather than the few who actually irritate me, because I'm too afraid to do it in real life to people's faces. I'm afraid that if I do it to their faces, they won't like me anymore. But you know what? So what if I'm rude, it's their fault they don't like me (my) rudeness – I'm perfect and all knowing, after all.

      Wow, that was easy.

      August 27, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
      • You're almost there

        Considering the majority of comments on here are people bashing those with beliefs on their own belief blog, you are very much out of place with your attempt of a witty retort.

        August 27, 2013 at 2:02 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          This is CNN's blog.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:03 pm |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          I thought it was sufficiently witty...

          August 27, 2013 at 2:04 pm |
        • You're almost there

          @ dave

          Semantics. Use your imagination and you'll know what I'm saying.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:05 pm |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          and since he was just mimicking you... I'd say he also came across as less of an asshat than you...

          August 27, 2013 at 2:06 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          You're almost there

          Do you worship Ganesha?

          August 27, 2013 at 2:09 pm |
        • EnjaySea

          Belief that there is a god, is not the only belief.

          This is the Belief blog, not the Chrstian Belief blog.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:09 pm |
        • You're almost there

          @ lucifer

          Even your own choice at a user name indicates your are merely trying to incite tension into this thread. The ass-hattyness seems to be everywhere here. I'm just admitting to it by calling out the inciting hyporcites.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          You're almost there

          What you said to Lucifer is complete hogwash. Lucifer fought against Yahweh's despotic regime. He's an admirable literary character. Anybody with a problem with the character of Lucifer is likely a monarch, a commie or a fascist.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
        • sam

          Yeah yeah, pretend it doesn't go both ways. Oh, and bitching about it will totally get you places.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:18 pm |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          Also, my name is not Lucifer... can you not read?

          August 27, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
        • Niknak

          Maybe you could enlighten us as to how a movie line about a super computer going astray somehow belittles those that believe in god(s).

          I will say it again, and you can try to read slowly so as to understand it;
          We non believers are here asking for some kind of verifiable proof of the god(s) that you claim exists.
          You believers make a claim of fact, which as of yet you have no proof of.

          That is not ridiculing you.

          Oh, I forgot, just questioning a believer is "Christian bashing!"

          August 27, 2013 at 2:39 pm |
        • Doobs

          Considering the majority of comments on here are people bashing those with beliefs

          I have beliefs, but belief in a deity isn't one of them.

          On any given page, there might be a majority of comments from one side or the other. So what? Disagreement isn't bashing, unless you're insecure in what you believe.

          on their own belief blog

          Again, I have beliefs. Just because they aren't also your beliefs gives you no right to say I can't post them here.

          you are very much out of place

          See the above.

          your attempt of a witty retort.

          I was simply pointing out how simple it is to label people who disagree with you as rude and to say they are bashing you. You just didn't like that I used your own words to do it.

          You're the one who tried and failed to be clever in your OP. Your post was snotty and sarcastic. Don't cry persecution when you receive pushback in the same tone.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:02 pm |
        • You're almost there

          @Doobs

          If the tone from many of the opponents of the religious faith weren't so antagonistic, then maybe you would have a point. Unfortunately, the general tone is hateful and condescending. I'm not crying persecution at all, and that's because I'm dishing out annoying complaints in the same manner that the most outspoken atheists use. And this is an article about making Christianity more exciting – comments bashing it have little to do with the the article. And I never said anything about my faith or lack thereof, so don't make any assumptions please.

          Most of the discussion here isn't "questioning," but merely insulting because there's no interest in leveling with one another. Chances are none of us here have any high ranking importance or strong enough voice that can change millions of people's opinions of what they believe or not, so the criticism is silly.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:34 pm |
        • AE

          @ You're almost there

          I think you hit the target with your observations. Well put.

          August 27, 2013 at 5:13 pm |
        • Sara

          I think Doobs was dead on. Read the description of what this blog is about. It is for anyone interested in discussiong the role of religion and belief. Making blanket statements about one whole group is just as bad as making blanket statements about any other whole group.

          August 27, 2013 at 5:28 pm |
      • Løki

        laut lachen

        August 27, 2013 at 2:02 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zGAyNufCC9k&w=640&h=360]

      August 27, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
    • Pole dancing for Jesus

      Tell us your church and I'll personally denounce your delusion.

      August 27, 2013 at 2:12 pm |
      • You're almost there

        Never said anything about a church or a lack thereof. Theists want to push against atheists and vice versa, and I'll get in the middle and tell them both to grow up and shake hands. In person or on a public forum. I don't understand why people get off on disrespecting each other.

        August 27, 2013 at 2:17 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          I'm now certain you're a troll.

          AVOID. AVOID. AVOID.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
        • You're almost there

          No don't avoid me, I just want people to feel silly and I'm lonely on here. Come on...

          August 27, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
        • AE

          That's not trolling.

          August 27, 2013 at 5:17 pm |
  9. fred

    Ma'am
    Göbekli Tepe does not change anything in the Genesis account. Perhaps you think interpretation of Genesis is limited to Adam and Eve being physical humans in a young earth creationism view. That is not a common understanding.
    Genesis itself records Cain using bronze tools and running into wives from another area. The Hebrew or Chosen Ones that came from the first parents Adam and Eve do not have a start date in time. Some added up the generations and came up a 6,000 year old beginning which is not accepted since the pattern of writers was to only include important families. It is unknown if any or how many generations were not shown in Genesis.

    I don't think we know where the people of Göbekli Tepe fit into the Nomadic tribes of the Bible. Cain and Able were farmers with bronze tools so they would be dated after 11,0000 BC

    August 27, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
    • fred

      ignore this post is in the wrong place.

      August 27, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
      • Løki

        Keine Sorge, wir ignorieren Ihre Dummheit all der Zeit ... wir sind daran gewöhnt ...

        August 27, 2013 at 1:53 pm |
        • fred

          Ihre thoughtfullness geschätzt wird

          August 27, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      If Adam and Eve were not literal humans then the entire theme of the bible, that of a redemption sacrafice continually depicted from the slaughter of the lambs to put blood on the doors during the first "pass over" of the angel of death during the last plague to the near killing of Isaac to the supposed death of Christ, all blood sacrafice meant to symbolize the exchange of one perfect life, that of Adam, for another perfect life, that of Jesus. If Adam and Eve were figurative, then there was no first human who ate of any forbidden fruit and thus no need for a redemption and no need for Christ. It's that simple.

      Genesis is wrong when taken literally, but loses all imagined divine power when taken figuratively.

      August 27, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
      • fred

        No, Adam and Eve can be representative of the physical and spiritual creation which fulfill Gods purpose of creation. Whether the actual first pair or simply first Hebrew or representative matters not. From the first to the present we are born into sin by virtue of free will that is not content to obey God. It is the sacrifice of God not man that atones for our sin. We are covered by the blood of the perfect lamb from the door post of Exodus to Christ on the cross and simply need to accept the offer of forgiveness.

        August 27, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          "Whether the actual first pair or simply first Hebrew or representative matters not."

          I disagree, it is the only thing that matters when discussing an ancestor that sinned that we are supposed to be related to and thus have a need for any ransom. If only Hebrews inherited sin then the rest of us need not worry at all. And if it was just one guy out of many early humans who sinned, then why are the rest supposed to carry his burden? It makes no sense. If all I have to do is read things and then "feel" the truth of it aka decipher however I chose because the story is allegory and not literal, then how are we all supposed to come to the same correct conclusions? Just admit that you are making it fit science as you go because you want to believe more than you've been convinced to believe.

          August 27, 2013 at 4:16 pm |
        • fred

          Ma'am
          "If only Hebrews inherited sin then the rest of us need not worry at all."
          =>Well we have the flood story where everyone except Noah was erased from existence. If you need an ancestor there it is.

          "if it was just one guy out of many early humans who sinned, then why are the rest supposed to carry his burden?"
          =>Adam and Eve were in the image of God without sin. Adam rejected God for the desires of the flesh. Their offspring were like Adam so we inherited this nature to rebel against God.
          =>We do not carry this burden anymore than a swordfish has the burden of swimming around with that big old nose.
          =>during this short lifetime a few will seek to love God and will find the way Jesus described.

          "how are we all supposed to come to the same correct conclusions?"
          =>We don't as noted by 40,000 different Christian denominations
          =>When you ask God to help bring truth into your life and pursue it you will receive that truth. Jesus was the best model and was the way the truth and the life. If you follow what Jesus said it is very simple, leave the complicated stuff (was Adam real or representative) for theologians who like the banter.
          => I recommend https://www.bsfinternational.org they are doing Matthew this year which is a great place to start. It is simple, easy and an accurate presentation.

          "Just admit that you are making it fit science"
          =>I admit that when new scientific findings come out I check to see if the Word of God still stands....so far so good.
          =>I also admit I have a very simple mind and most of the time just stick to Love God and Love others. I read a little every day on what Jesus had to say which keeps me centered. Every place I go I try an be a blessing to others. I don't see a downside to such a way of life.

          August 27, 2013 at 5:01 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          "=>I admit that when new scientific findings come out I check to see if the Word of God still stands....so far so good."

          I highly doubt it. I believe when new scientificv evidence is discovered you check to see how you can contort the bible to fit the new evidence. It is like having a circular hole to fill and you are given a square peg. Instead of just saying :"well, these do not fit" you start shaving the corners off the square peg and eventually you get it jammed into the top of the hole and you look around at everyone with a gleaming smile "see! It fits!"

          August 27, 2013 at 5:50 pm |
        • fred

          Ma'am
          Take for example current evolutionary thought that we descended from a group not a single pair of male and female hominids. I could question the science or question the Genesis account. The usage of the word Adam in Hebrew can be mankind or a man and I don't know which. Well it does not matter because it does not change the story. The story could have always been of a representative man (physical or non physical by some accounts) I don't know. 200 years ago I would not have thought Adam and Eve were any thing other than two physical people. So to your point I don't force a biblical conclusion but I am amazed the Bible still stands correct.

          August 27, 2013 at 6:16 pm |
  10. Richard Cranium

    L of A
    " theists have scripture to back up scripture"

    Hahahahahahahahahahahaha....seriously though, Hahahahahahahahahaha
    I have my book that backs up my book, and even though my book is obviously flawed in many, many places, it says it is right, so it must be. Hahahahahahahahahahahaha
    That is flat out hilarious. Also science does not say things are true based on mathematics. Someone who says that science is declaring truth does not understand how science works.

    August 27, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
    • Lawrence of Arabia

      And yet you admit to the existence of "theoretical physicists" who claim the idea of a "multiverse" as being a plausible theory for the existence of the universe, but without one shred of evidence for it, just formulae.

      And bout these "flaws" in scripture... You know, I've been seriously studying the Bible for 24 years now and haven't found a single one...

      August 27, 2013 at 1:41 pm |
      • Richard Cranium

        L of A
        Plausible theory does not equal knowing or claiming to know. The bible is rife with flaws.
        Noah's Ark never happened. We know thins because of MANY feilds of science, and not just hypothetical numbers.
        Genetics, biology, oceanology, chemistry, icthyology, meteorology, geology are some of the sciences that prove oah's ark NEVER happened, at least not since life began on the planet.

        But you disregard science as if it were some form of voodoo, instead believing in, well, christian voodoo.
        Keep your delusions, i will continue to find ACTUAL answers, not 2000 year old pipe dreams.

        August 27, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
      • Løki

        "I've been seriously studying the Bible for 24 years now and haven't found a single one" – Nun sind Sie offensichtlich ein dummer arsch

        August 27, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
        • G to the T

          Besser als ein smart ass...

          August 27, 2013 at 2:43 pm |
      • EnjaySea

        Flaw: the earth is 10,000 years (or so) old.
        Flaw: there was a man out there in space writing down each thing that happened in creation, as it happened.
        Flaw: snakes talk.

        Apparently in your 24 years of study of the Bible, you somehow forgot to read Genesis.

        August 27, 2013 at 1:51 pm |
        • hharri

          Flaw-every flaw you found.

          Snakes talking? You talk.

          August 28, 2013 at 1:45 am |
      • Doobs

        Funny, I studied the bible for over 30 years and found so many that I became an atheist.

        I must not have been studying correctly, or I wasn't a real Christian, or I had a bad translation, or god hardened my heart, or the devil put blinders on me, or, or, or...

        August 27, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
      • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

        Why not study Finnegan's Wake for 24 years? If ever there was a book written that deserves intensive study, it's Finnegan's Wake. I personally found it utterly impenetrable. If I had 24 years to devote to a piece of literature, it would be Finnegan's Wake, rather than a book which has already been extensively studied by thousands of people and whose non-lingual merit is non-existent.

        August 27, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          Finnegan's Wake is aporetic. The Bible is not, as much as atheist might insist that it is.

          August 27, 2013 at 4:09 pm |
      • Rascal

        The beauty of theoretical physicists and their wacky multi-universe theories is that they, at this very moment, are thinking about how to devise experiments to verify their suppositions. Experiments that can be reviewed, duplicated, and verified by the scientific community. There is a well established protocol to Science that can not be applied to Faith because of it's very nature. That's why I'll trust a scientist's claims over any preacher's claims.

        August 27, 2013 at 3:49 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          A scientist in China kidnapped a six year old boy, anesthetized him, removed his eyes, stole the corneas and sold them for a tidy profit on the black market for organs. The boy survived and is being treated. A preacher claims the actions of the scientist are not only illegal but are a sin because the child is made in teh image of God and even if the act were legal, it would still be wrong. Which one is correct?

          August 27, 2013 at 4:56 pm |
        • Sara

          Bill, which what is correct? What are the two choices?i

          August 27, 2013 at 4:59 pm |
        • ME II

          @Bill Deacon,
          Neither.

          August 27, 2013 at 5:02 pm |
        • Sara

          Bill, as an aside, I would treat that story with some skepticism. I have a bad susan-smith-kidnapping vibe off that one, but let's assume it for a hupothetical.

          August 27, 2013 at 5:06 pm |
        • Rascal

          OK, you got me Bill. Not sure what your point is, but you made it.

          August 28, 2013 at 8:32 am |
  11. Lionly Lamb

    Betrachten Sie nun die sehr realen Möglichkeiten unendliche Mengen von "Big Bang Universen" quer durch die weite breit und tiefen und Höhen des räumlich unendlichen nichts... Für das Urknall-Universum befinden wir uns ist in nur einer von vielen und oft mehr auf Unendlichkeiten... Der geistigen Rückschau Humanisms wollen ungern solche Arten Argumentation zu betrachten ist als eine geistige Behinderung der natured Relativisms der Einfältigkeiten dröhnende Fürstentümer... Lebe lang und nie aufhören, Fragen...

    August 27, 2013 at 1:23 pm |
    • Løki

      Sie sprechen genauso verrückt in Deutsch ...

      August 27, 2013 at 1:26 pm |
  12. Løki

    Hel ist ein kalter Ort ... werfen Sie Ihre christ! Die Walküren werden nicht für Sie Christen kommen! Valhalla wird für immer aus Ihrer Reichweite ... Die All-Vater weiß alles und sieht alles ... Huginn und Muninn beobachten und zu sehen und sagen Sie ihm alles! Du kannst nicht entkommen Ragnarok ...

    August 27, 2013 at 1:22 pm |
  13. Lionly Lamb

    Consider well the very real possibilities of infinite amounts of "big bang universes" crisscrossing the vastness breadths and depths and heights of spatially infinite nothingness... For the big bang universe we find ourselves being within is but one of many and many times more onto infinities... The intellectual hindsight of humanisms wanting to unwillingly contemplate such reasoning ways, is as a mental hindrance natured relativisms of simplicities resounding principalities... Live long and never stop wondering...

    August 27, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
    • Lawrence of Arabia

      What some call science, I call mathematical speculation.

      August 27, 2013 at 1:15 pm |
      • Løki

        Was manche als Religion ... andere nennen geistiger Behinderung

        August 27, 2013 at 1:20 pm |
      • Doobs

        What some call a tourtière, I call a meat pie.

        August 27, 2013 at 2:05 pm |
      • EnjaySea

        I'm glad science "mathematically speculated" that there could be computers. Otherwise we wouldn't be having this conversation.

        August 27, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
      • Lionly Lamb

        Sired Lawrence...

        The mathematics around there being an infinity of big bang universes has yet to be gained in popularity... My best guess that science is unwilling to take up such a perspective is that spatially infinite nothingness would be considered more than a lifelessness formation that was at one time giving birth to unending big bang universes and most likely still is giving birth to an unending ongoing ensemble of big bang universes... Do the math you mathematicians willing to consider such thoughts...

        August 27, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
    • ME II

      I wouldn't say that Lionly Lamb is anything close to science or mathematical speculation.

      August 27, 2013 at 1:19 pm |
      • Lionly Lamb

        Sired Me II...

        So then, "What is your philosophical speculation around the infinite vastness of eternalized nothingness and all its materialized contrivances..?

        August 27, 2013 at 2:28 pm |
        • ME II

          Whelped Lionly Lamb,

          Other than your words appearing to be the very "nothingness" you expound upon... not much.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:00 pm |
        • Lionly Lamb

          Sired Me II...

          Can't you aspire to be philosophical or are you but a lump upon the log..? Again, "What is your philosophical speculation around the infinite vastness of eternalized nothingness and all its materialized contrivances..?"

          August 27, 2013 at 3:36 pm |
        • ME II

          Whelped Lionly Lamb,

          I can't speculate on "the infinite vastness of eternalized nothingness and all its materialized contrivances," because it sounds like gibberish to me.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:59 pm |
        • Lionly Lamb

          Your mundaneness is duly noted and I see your intellectual suffrage so I will take my question away from your ineptness toward comprehensiveness relinquishing you of any and all actions deemed too laborious for an ardent consumerist such as your abilities does so emulate...

          August 27, 2013 at 4:21 pm |
    • Lawrence of Arabia

      When pseudo scientists claim that certain mathematical possibilities are true because they have math to back it up, but it cannot be observed to be so, then they are putting themselves into the same box that they claim theists are in – they have math to back up math, theists have scripture to back up scripture. What then defines the truth about reality? How does one really get answers? The truth is, in the end, both the scientist and the theist must form their lives around what cannot be directly observed.

      August 27, 2013 at 1:21 pm |
      • ME II

        1) Lionly Lamb doesn't even qualify as "pseudo" science.

        2) math is verifiable and testable. Although, that does not mean that a consistent mathematical model correctly models the "real world". Spirituality, on the other hand, is neither verifiable nor testable.

        August 27, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Testable I would agree with you. God is not a puppet on a string to bow to the whim of man whenever he begs intervention... But verifyable? Yes, certainly – the God of Christianity is verifyable. Look to the claims of scripture and see if it aligns with reality – look to prophecy fulfillment for example. Take the book that the prophecy was made, and when it was written, then look to the fulfillment, and the book that it was in and the date it was written... I've got over a dozen examples of specific prophecy fulfillment although there are many, many more. From the destruction of Babylon, to Cyrus being predicted by name hundreds of years before his birth to rebuild Jerusalem, to the destruction of Tyre.

          August 27, 2013 at 1:37 pm |
        • AE

          Accept humility. Seek humility. Find God. There is a reason the proverbs describe fools as prideful and arrogant. When I am a fool it is hard to see God in this world. But there He is.

          August 27, 2013 at 1:41 pm |
        • ME II

          @Lawrence of Arabia,
          So, both the prophecy and the fulfillment were both described by people with a vested interest in a prophecy being true. Reminds me of the "testimonies" given in late-night television ads: "I lost 100 pounds", "I made a million dollars", "It changed my life", "I prayed for a cure and the next day I was cured! Hallelujah! "

          What are your examples?

          August 27, 2013 at 1:43 pm |
        • ME II

          @AE,
          I admit that I don't know all the answers, but apparently you, or some like you, claim to know a supernatural being who does have all the answers, and claim to know what s/he wants from us. Who is more prideful and arrogant?

          August 27, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          ME II, I'm trying to type a response, but apparently something in it is flagging CNN's "no-no" filters... Figures...

          August 27, 2013 at 1:50 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          "God is not a puppet on a string to bow to the whim of man whenever he begs intervention... "

          Elijah disagreed.

          "22 Then Elijah said to them, “I am the only one of the Lord’s prophets left, but Baal has four hundred and fifty prophets. 23 Get two bulls for us. Let Baal’s prophets choose one for themselves, and let them cut it into pieces and put it on the wood but not set fire to it. I will prepare the other bull and put it on the wood but not set fire to it. 24 Then you call on the name of your god, and I will call on the name of the Lord. The god who answers by fire—he is God.” Then all the people said, “What you say is good.” 1 Kings 18:22-24

          August 27, 2013 at 2:10 pm |
        • Doobs

          Look to the claims of scripture and see if it aligns with reality – look to prophecy fulfillment for example. Take the book that the prophecy was made, and when it was written, then look to the fulfillment, and the book that it was in and the date it was written... I've got over a dozen examples of specific prophecy fulfillment although there are many, many more. From the destruction of Babylon, to Cyrus being predicted by name hundreds of years before his birth to rebuild Jerusalem, to the destruction of Tyre.

          If that is true, then two thousand years in the future, people will worship JFK as a jelly doughnut who became man, was murdered by his enemies and was resurrected in a Dunkin' Donuts in Mobile, Alababa before he was teleported to NGC 6369. When he comes back, he will cast all non-jelly donuts into the fryer of eternal torture.

          Some will say that he only claimed to be a Berliner, but that is obviously a translational error.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
        • Doobs

          @ AE

          There is a reason the proverbs describe fools as prideful and arrogant.

          Of course there's a reason the bible says that. It's the same reason John Smith used when he said that only a person who believed in the golden plates could see the golden plates, and why Hans Christian Andersen's emperor paraded around naked. It's one of the most common brainwashing tactics. You can convince yourself of anything in order not to be perceived as a fool.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
        • AE

          -@ME
          -I admit that I don't know all the answers, but apparently you, or some like you, claim to know a supernatural being who does have all the answers, and claim to know what s/he wants from us. Who is more prideful and arrogant?

          I say when I was an agnostic who really wanted to know if God existed – it was my pride and arrogance that stood in my way of knowing God.

          I claim God wants us to know Him/Her. Not just know about, but to actually know God.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          If your god wants me to know him, why doesn't he call over with a six-pack and a pizza some night?

          August 27, 2013 at 2:45 pm |
        • AE

          That must be the reason, Doobs. Doesn't sound foolish at all.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
        • AE

          Dave,

          If you honestly want to know God, try humbly asking. Get on your knees and ask God to reveal himself to you in a way you can understand.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:49 pm |
        • Sara

          Dave, I would totally check into any god who showed up with pizza. A lot of these guys like to claim we wouldn't accept god even if he provided good evidence, which is a great little lie to tell themselves since we're in no risk of ever seeing good evidence. If I was sitting in this room with just one other reliable person and a god suddenly appeared and talked with us I'd be halfway to believing. A couple more visits and a piece or two of verifiable evidence left behind (I'd take a bit of paper with the high temps over the next year) and I'd be in the believer camp. It wouldn't take much...it's just that we aren't given anything anyone who wasn't desperate for a god would look twice at.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:50 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          AE

          I kneel for nobody. Perhaps it's your god who needs humbling if that's how he deems it appropriate to introduce himself to people.

          Sara

          Pizza and the correct lottery numbers would make me a believer. Heck, I'd even kneel for him, as AE suggested. I'd better shut the dra.pes though, I don't want the neighbors seeing me kneel down to satisfy strangers.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:58 pm |
        • ME II

          @AE,
          "I say when I was an agnostic who really wanted to know if God existed – it was my pride and arrogance that stood in my way of knowing God."

          It seems somewhat arrogant of you to imply that you know my mind simply because you once called yourself "agnostic". Although, I could be mistaken.

          "I claim God wants us to know Him/Her. Not just know about, but to actually know God."

          Right, you claim to know what God wants.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:14 pm |
        • AE

          Dave,

          No, I'm pretty sure that a human being benefits from the act of seeking humility. It was almost as if we have evolved (or possibly even created) to be that way.

          But you are free to imagine you are a god that doesn't need to bow down to anyone (unless you get some tangible reward, like pizza and beer). I'm sure you can provide yourself with all the pizza and beer you need. Looks like you've already gotten your reward you seek in this life. You are lucky.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
        • AE

          @ ME II
          @ Right, you claim to know what God wants.

          Yes. God wants to be in relationship with you. That is how God operates. That is why you exist.

          Yes, I am arrogant and full of pride. Yet God still wants me to know Him. Just like the prodigal son, He welcomes me.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:18 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          The etymologies of human and humility are completely different so I have no idea what comparison you are trying to make.

          Who said I think I'm a deity?

          Luck doesn't exist but I'm undeniably happy with my life.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:19 pm |
        • AE

          http://www.english-for-students.com/human.html

          –These ROOT-WORDS are HUM & HUMAN which come from the Latin humus, meaning EARTH & GROUND and the Latin humanus which means MAN. It is interesting to follow the changes of idea here. It begins with HUMus, earth, then becomes HUMble, lowly; finally to HUMAN, Man. But we must never forget the origin of man; “Dust thou art and to dust thou must return.” -

          August 27, 2013 at 3:24 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Sorry, I believe you're right there. I got confused between human and man.

          Also, why does Yahweh demand from me a virtue he finds impossible to hold?

          August 27, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
        • ME II

          I thought "human" traced back to "ho.mo", man.

          "late Middle English humaine, from Old French humain(e), from Latin humanus, from ho[]mo 'man, human being'."
          ( http://oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/american_english/human?q=human)

          August 27, 2013 at 3:42 pm |
        • AE

          @ Also, why does Yahweh demand from me a virtue he finds impossible to hold?

          Probably because he is not human. He is not from earth. He will not return to the earth. But He may find it helpful for human beings to realize exactly what they are.

          August 27, 2013 at 3:57 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          I know exactly who I am.

          [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rly1ZZ076G8&w=640&h=360]

          August 27, 2013 at 4:00 pm |
        • ME II

          @AE,
          I was expecting something like, 'arrogance is unwarranted self-worth and pride is undeserved self-esteem, neither of which is the case for God'.

          August 27, 2013 at 4:02 pm |
        • Sara

          I tried the kneeling thing to be sure I gave it a fair try. No luck. Anyone got any other gods for me to check out. I've got the whole day off and can spin circles or light candles or whatever is needed. My partner will be home soon, though, so anything too unusual might take some explaining.

          August 27, 2013 at 4:48 pm |
        • Sara

          human (adj.)

          mid-15c., humain, humaigne, from Old French humain, umain (adj.) "of or belonging to man" (12c.), from Latin humanus "of man, human," also "humane, philanthropic, kind, gentle, polite; learned, refined, civilized," probably related to ho.mo (genitive hominis) "man," and to humus "earth," on notion of "earthly beings," as opposed to the gods (cf. Hebrew adam "man," from adamah "ground"). Cognate with Old Lithuanian zmuo (accusative zmuni) "man, male person."

          As a noun, from 1530s. Its Old English cognate guma (from Proto-Germanic *guman-) survives only in disguise in bridegroom. Related: Humanness. Human rights attested by 1680s; human being by 1690s. Human relations is from 1916; human resources attested by 1907, American English, apparently originally among social Christians and drawn from natural resources.

          http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?allowed_in_frame=0&search=human&searchmode=none

          August 27, 2013 at 4:54 pm |
        • ME II

          probably related to ho.mo (genitive hominis) "man," and to humus "earth," on notion of "earthly beings,"

          Not sure what that means, but interesting.

          August 27, 2013 at 5:30 pm |
      • Løki

        Nachweisbare mathematische theorien sind "pseudo-wissenschaft?"

        August 27, 2013 at 1:41 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Ja, wenn es keine beobachtbaren Wirklichkeit um ihn wieder aufzubauen. Sie können keine Mathematik, Mathematik, die kreisförmig Argumentation ist zu beweisen. Es gibt mathematische Formeln zum Sichern zombie Befall, aber das bedeutet nicht, dass es real ist.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:05 pm |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          "zombie infestation" be careful, you were almost funny...

          August 27, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
      • ME II

        @AE,
        I thought "human" traced back to "ho.mo", man.

        "late Middle English humaine, from Old French humain(e), from Latin humanus, from ho[]mo 'man, human being'."
        ( http://oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/american_english/human?q=human)

        August 27, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
        • ME II

          mispost

          August 27, 2013 at 3:42 pm |
  14. Vic

    Jesus Christ Fully God Fully Man

    John 1:1-5
    "1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. 5 The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."

    John 1:14
    "14 And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth."

    Philippians 2:6-8
    "6 who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. 8 Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross."

    1 Timothy 3:16
    "16 By common confession, great is the mystery of godliness:

    He who was revealed in the flesh,
    Was vindicated in the Spirit,
    Seen by angels,
    Proclaimed among the nations,
    Believed on in the world,
    Taken up in glory."

    Hebrews 1:3
    "3 And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,"

    Hebrews 2:17
    "17 Therefore, He had to be made like His brethren in all things, so that He might become a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people."

    All 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/

    August 27, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
    • Løki

      Götterdämmerung / Ragnarok ist nah! Es wird von Fimbulvetr, der Winter Winter vorangestellt werden. Drei solcher Winter werden einander ohne Sommer dazwischen folgen. Konflikte und Fehden ausbrechen wird, auch zwischen Familien und alle Moral verschwindet. Dies ist der Beginn des Endes.

      Der Wolf Skoll endlich verschlingen die Sonne, und sein Bruder Hati den Mond essen, stürzt das Midgard (Erde) in die Dunkelheit. Die Sterne werden vom Himmel verschwinden. Der Hahn krähen wird Fjalar den Riesen und dem goldenen Hahn krähen wird Gullinkambi zu den Göttern. Eine dritte Schwanz wird die Toten auferwecken.

      Die Erde wird mit Erdbeben schaudern, und jede Bindung und fetter wird platzen, die Befreiung der schreckliche Wolf Fenrir. Das Meer wird oben auf, weil Jormungand, die Midgard Schlange, ist Dreh-und wand sich in Wut, als er seinen Weg in Richtung des Landes macht. Mit jedem Atemzug wird Jormungand Flecken auf der Erde und den Himmel mit seinem Gift. Die Wellen, die von der Schlange den Schwellenländern verursacht wird frei das Schiff Naglfar, und mit dem Riesen Hymir als ihren Kommandanten, die Riesen wird auf dem Schlachtfeld zu segeln. Aus dem Reich der Toten ein zweites Schiff die Segel, und das Schiff trägt die Bewohner der Hölle, mit Loki als Steuermann. Die Feuer-Riesen, von dem Riesen Surt geführt wird Muspell im Süden zu verlassen, um gegen die Götter kommen. Sirte, ein Schwert, das wie die Sonne selbst bahnt, wird die Erde versengen.

      In der Zwischenzeit wird Heimdall klingt sein Horn, ruft die Söhne von Odin und die Helden auf dem Schlachtfeld. Aus allen Ecken der Welt, werden Götter, Riesen, Zwerge, Elfen und Dämonen auf die weite Ebene von Vigrid fahren ("battle Shaker"), wo die letzte Schlacht ausgefochten werden. Odin wird Fenrir im Kampf zu engagieren, und Thor wird Jormungand anzugreifen. Thor wird siegreich, aber das Gift der Schlange tötet allmählich den Gott des Donners. Sirte wird sich bemühen, den schwertlosen Freyr, der schnell zum Riesen wird erliegen. Die Einhand-Tyr wird im Kampf gegen die monströsen Hund Garm und sie werden sich gegenseitig töten. Loki und Heimdall, uralte Feinde, wird ein letztes Mal zu treffen, und weder ihre Begegnung zu überleben. Der Kampf zwischen Odin und Fenrir wird für eine lange Zeit wüten, aber schließlich wird Fenrir Odin zu ergreifen und ihn verschlingen. Odins Sohn Vidar wird auf einmal auf den Wolf springen und tötet ihn mit bloßen Händen, riss der Wolf Backen auseinander.
      Dann wird Surt Feuer in alle Richtungen schleudern. Die neun Welten wird brennen, und Freunde und Feinde gleichermaßen untergehen. Die Erde wird im Meer versinken.

      Nach der Zerstörung, wird eine neue und idyllische Welt aus dem Meer entstehen und wird mit reichlich Vorräte aufgefüllt werden. Einige der Götter werden überleben, andere wiedergeboren werden. Bosheit und Elend nicht mehr existieren und Götter und Menschen werden glücklich zusammen leben. Die Nachkommen von Lif und Lifthrasir bewohnen die Erde.

      August 27, 2013 at 12:41 pm |
      • Lionly Lamb

        In English summation...

        After the destruction, a new and idyllic world will emerge from the sea and will be filled with abundant supplies. Some of the gods will survive, others will be reborn. Malice and misery no longer exist and gods and people will live happily together. The descendants of LIF and Lifthrasir inhabit the Earth.

        August 27, 2013 at 1:10 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      So someone wrote something down...that is what scripture means. Don't believe everything you read, especially stories that claim some sort of magic.
      By the way, the Harry Potter novels are also scripture, and they are not real either.

      August 27, 2013 at 12:41 pm |
      • Just the Facts Ma'am...

        I've never been to England but I believe it to be real. In the Harry Potter books he travels all over England so Harry Potter must be real, right?

        August 27, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
      • Vic

        The Creator and creature are NEVER equal, conceptually and actually! Harry Potter is a fictional (which falls under conceptual) character of a creature!

        August 27, 2013 at 1:02 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          And the evidence of humanity points to the same for your god. Men created him and all other gods. There is far more evidence of that, than there is your hypothesis.

          August 27, 2013 at 1:04 pm |
        • AE

          "And the evidence of humanity points to the same for your god."

          I don't agree with your opinion. And all of humanity certainly doesn't either.

          August 27, 2013 at 1:10 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          J.K. created Harry Potter in her own image, two arms, two legs, curiosity for the world around them, so who is to say he is not real in some sense. If you can believe in miracles then others can believe in Magic with the same confidence.

          August 27, 2013 at 1:10 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          Oh, and Harry Potter never said he was equal to creature, just that creature should be given the same rights and freedoms as everyone else instead of being enslaved to a horrid family...

          August 27, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          That is why Harry kept creature but freed Dobby...

          August 27, 2013 at 1:14 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          AE
          Not opinion
          Men have created worshipped thousands of gods. Yours is just one among the thousands. It is not opinion, it is a simple matter of probabilities.

          August 27, 2013 at 1:25 pm |
        • AE

          @Richard

          I've seen you be completely wrong on this message board before and you offered no apology or explanation. (The incident where the moderator of this blog posted some message, and you insisted it was a fake. It wasn't, he proved he was right).

          So there is a lot of evidence that you are wrong about things, too. Just like all that evidence you see from humanity – it points to you, too.

          And I honestly believe your point of view is faulty. I don't trust it. It is an opinion. And your insistence that is not is called arrogance.

          The fact that you are here day after day after day talking about something that doesn't believe... that is all the evidence I need. Thank you! Keep coming back.

          August 27, 2013 at 1:36 pm |
        • AE

          "talking about something that you don't believe in."

          whoops.

          August 27, 2013 at 1:38 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          AE,
          Presumably as a christian you believe that other gods are the inventions of humanity. So by extension believers in other religions believe that gods other than their own are the inventions of humanity. There is evidence that man invented gods, there is no evidence of a god or that a god created humanity.

          August 27, 2013 at 1:49 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          Santa...thank, could not have explained it better myself.

          You claim I was wrong about the CNN moderator...I was, it was very unlikely given the way he presented himself that he was for real. So?

          Santa's explaination is exactly my point. Men HAVE created many many gods. Why isn't yours one of them, oh right because MEN said so in your bible. No where in it is there one single word from any gods.

          August 27, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
        • AE

          "there is no evidence (for you and only you) of a god or that a god created humanity."

          Just like for Richard:

          "And (personally) the evidence of humanity points to the same for your god."

          It is your opinion, guys. One that is worth what you get paid to express it on this board. $0!

          There is overwhelming evidence that you guys are obsessed with a god that doesn't exist; so much so that you devote a large portion of your life discussing this god.

          The evidence of "humanity" points that your personal beliefs are going to look incredibly silly to society in hundreds of years from now. You guys really aren't a source of logic or reason; you are human beings. You use logic and reason to rationalize insane behavior, like wasting your life discussing a god you insist doesn't exist.

          August 27, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      If the bible is the word of god, why do The Lockman Foundation hace the copyright?

      August 27, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
      • Vic

        Jesus Christ Himself is the Actual Word of God.

        August 27, 2013 at 1:33 pm |
        • Akira

          Then wouldn't the copyright be held by Jesus instead of the Lockman Foundation?

          August 27, 2013 at 1:39 pm |
        • G to the T

          So one author believed. Odd though isn't it that John (an illiterate jewish fisherman) would use a Greek philosophical term to describe Jesus? Almost like it was written by someone else trying to specifically speak against the view that Jesus didn't exist before he was born (i.e. the Ebionites)...

          August 27, 2013 at 2:54 pm |
      • Maani

        Santa: Unless you're simply trying to be funny, don't engage in b.s. The Lockman Foundation does not have the copyright to ANYTHING. They are simply the largest organization producing various versions of the Bible. However, the Bible itself is in the public domain, which is why other versions come out all the time – including a recent version that has created quite some controversy.

        August 31, 2013 at 7:59 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          So you're the blog police? On what authority do you tell me what to do? The quote from Vic (in fact every quote from Vic that I have seen) has that copyright. Do you think it is the word of a god? If so how does copyright apply?

          August 31, 2013 at 8:10 pm |
    • Doobs

      Jesus Christ Fully God Fully Man

      Is that why he went up to a fig tree, looking for fruit even though it was out of season, and then killed the tree for not having any figs on it?

      Yep, that sounds exactly like something your god would do. Expect the impossible from its "creation", then kill the "creation" when it can't perform the impossible.

      August 27, 2013 at 1:18 pm |
      • Bill Deacon

        Yup, a barren nation, exultant in it's foliage, but bearing no fruit will wither and die.

        August 27, 2013 at 4:22 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          It's going to be fun to watch, for the masses have gone up to the tree of organized religion and found it barren. I can already hear the attempts to start the chainsaws as humanity prepares to cut down the trees who only produce the rotten fruit of segregation, hate, violence, exclusivity and bigotry. No humans will be hurt in this process, except for their cash cows being taken and slaughtered and given back to the people.

          August 27, 2013 at 4:26 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          Yes, our nationalized religions of fiat currency, televised entertainment and objectification of people are about to rot on the vine.

          August 27, 2013 at 4:40 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          Really? That's the best you could manage? A simple "i'm rubber, your'e glue" come back?

          August 27, 2013 at 5:41 pm |
        • Doobs

          Another one of your patented dodges, Bill Wastoid. That's just a rationalization for Jeebus' petulance. The so called eyewitness accounts of this scene give no indication that it is one of your allegories, translational errors, or parables. It's a simple narrative describing a scene that conflicts with the whole "god made man" and "sinless perfection" dogma. Of course you need to explain it away.

          August 28, 2013 at 1:38 pm |
  15. vanityofvanitys

    Can never understand why so many of my posts get rejected?

    August 27, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      Often posts are blocked because of "bad" words or parts of them. For instance, you can't use the word const!tution without modifying it because of the word t!t embedded within it.
      There are many other words that are blocked. You can't ven refer to someone in ja pan because the derogatory J ap.

      August 27, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
      • vanityofvanitys

        Thank you for that. But what an absurd and unfair way of policing the comments. It's not like CNN is an arm of the Church or the moral majority.

        August 27, 2013 at 1:53 pm |
    • Løki

      Eitelkeit der Eitelkeiten?

      August 27, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
    • Doobs

      The ones that always get me are "vague" (vag) and "accumulate" (cum).

      August 27, 2013 at 1:22 pm |
      • EnjaySea

        Constitution (tit) is another one.

        August 27, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
        • Doobs

          Yes, the evil "tit. Can't let the kiddies read that one!

          August 27, 2013 at 2:30 pm |
  16. Lucifer's Evil Twin

    I get up at seven, yeah
    And I go to work at nine
    I got no time for livin'
    Yes, I'm workin' all the time

    [Chorus:]
    It seems to me
    I could live my life
    A lot better than I think I am
    I guess that's why they call me
    They call me the working man

    They call me the working man
    I guess that's what I am

    I get home at five o'clock
    And I take myself out a nice, cold beer
    Always seem to be wonderin'
    Why there's nothin' goin' down here

    [Chorus]

    Well, they call me the working man
    I guess that's what I am

    August 27, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
    • lol?? Pithiest, YES!!

      Hells Angels don't get a retirement.

      August 28, 2013 at 10:31 am |
  17. AverageJoe76

    Maybe if it was exciting to go to church, I might've still been blissfully ignorant of reality. Now I'm feeling muy mal 😦

    .....but not of freeing myself from religion, that's actually the good part. I'm feel 'muy mal' because now I have to wait for everyone else to catch up. Bummer. But I will demonstrate patience as I bite off my bottom lip...... waiting......... hehe.

    August 27, 2013 at 11:52 am |
  18. Doc Vestibule

    As I lay drifting off to sleep last night, an ethereal presence revealed to me events that have not yet come to pass.
    So I share will you, fellow Belief Bloggers – THE PROPHECIES OF Dr. VESTIBULE

    1) In the next 6-24 months, a major natural disaster will destroy buildings and cost lives.
    2) Many people will feel sad and seek to fill the void in their lives with distractions and anesthetization.
    3) There will be conflict in the MIddle East
    4) A sign in the heavens will herald the birth of one who will grow to be a great leader.

    August 27, 2013 at 11:51 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      BUT WAIT... THERE'S MORE

      5) Suri Cruise will be named the 2nd coming of L. Ron Hubbard. From that point on, all photos of the child will prominently display dozens of ficti.tious military decorations.
      6) Kim Kardashian will adopt a 3rd world child and then discard it when it becomes too large to tote around in a handbag.
      7) Iran will breed a race of giant insects that breathe atomic fire. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will claim that they are "purely decorative".
      8) Capitalizing on the success of Botox, plastic surgeons will begin injecting clients with salmonella to promote weight loss. "Salmonex" booths will pop up in mall food courts all over America.
      9) President Obama will continue his communist campaign of terror against rich white people by collectivizing America’s golf courses and country clubs.

      August 27, 2013 at 11:56 am |
      • Lucifer's Evil Twin

        "BUT WAIT... THERE'S MORE" LOL

        August 27, 2013 at 11:58 am |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          I predict that tomorrow is Wednesday... and a new episode of Wheeler Dealers will be on Velocity (2100 EST)... tremble in anticipation mortals!

          August 27, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          Wait... my prediction is becoming more clear... yes! the featured car will be an Aston Martin DB7!

          August 27, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
      • Niknak

        9 has some merit.
        Hope he does that one soon.

        August 27, 2013 at 12:06 pm |
  19. AE

    Also of note: Jesus tells this story of the prodigal son in response to the religious leaders' disgust that Jesus would eat with tax collectors and prost.itutes.

    August 27, 2013 at 11:40 am |
    • Niknak

      And that's not boring?

      August 27, 2013 at 12:09 pm |
      • AE

        A church filled with awful sinners sounds less boring than a church filled with pious religious leaders.

        August 27, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      So if he is addressing those people, who would they represent in the parable? The father? No. The prodigal son who squandered his inherritance? No, I don't think many listening would have been thinking themselves to be the one going out with prostltutes. Who is the only other player in the parable then? The other "faithful" son, that is who the parable was told to and for. That is why the parable ends with the father admonishing not the returned son, but the son who stayed but was now jealous of the returned sons position. Jesus reminded them it is not their place to judge whom God invites in to his feast, they should just be happy that more were invited.

      August 27, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
      • AE

        And look at the love the father shows the other son; he says to him: "...all that is mine is yours."

        For both sons the father's love isn't based on their virtue or what they do.

        This parable could be called the "Prodigal father"; for me it is about the father's "wastefully extrav.agant" love for both of his sons.

        August 27, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
  20. hharri

    Surely you understand this will be expensive. Trying to prove you didn't discriminate against a religion, that should be kind of tough and didn't engage in terrorist rhetoric. No thanks. And screwing with computers, WordPress. Not smart. All to keep Dorothy happy.

    August 27, 2013 at 11:31 am |
    • Lionly Lamb

      Following the yellow bricked road should be a cautious affair when one considers those one meets along the way...

      August 27, 2013 at 12:01 pm |
    • Akira

      Faith! Hello! How are you?
      I see you're talking about your "lawsuit" again.
      Still awaiting my subpoena.

      August 27, 2013 at 1:32 pm |
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About this blog

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