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Pope condemns use of chemical weapons in Syria
Pope Francis has called for peaceful resolution to Syria's escalating civil war.
September 2nd, 2013
11:39 AM ET

Pope condemns use of chemical weapons in Syria

By Daniel Burke, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

(CNN) - As President Obama rallies support for a military strike on Syria, Pope Francis condemned chemical weapons and called for an international day of fasting and prayer to press for a peaceful resolution to Syria's escalating civil war.

The pope tweeted an anti-war message to his nearly 3 million Twitter followers on Monday, repeating a theme he has sounded with increasing urgency in recent days.

On Sunday, Francis devoted much of his Angelus address in Rome to Syria.

"There are so many conflicts in this world which cause me great suffering and worry," the pope said, "but in these days my heart is deeply wounded in particular by what is happening in Syria and anguished by the dramatic developments which are looming."

However, the pope also said that people who use chemical weapons - as the Syrian government has been accused of doing - will face divine judgement.

"With utmost firmness I condemn the use of chemical weapons: I tell you that those terrible images from recent days are burned into my mind and heart. There is a judgment of God and of history upon our actions which are inescapable!"

The pope also proclaimed September 7 a day of prayer and fasting for Syrian peace, and invited the world's 1.5 billion Catholics, as well as other Christians, followers of different religions and "all men of goodwill" to join him.

From 7-12 p.m. in Rome, Francis said, "we will gather in prayer and in a spirit of penance, invoking God’s great gift of peace upon the beloved nation of Syria and upon each situation of conflict and violence around the world."

"Humanity needs to see these gestures of peace and to hear words of hope and peace!" he said.

On Monday, the pope met with a delegation from the World Jewish Congress as Judaism's High Holidays approach. Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year, begins September 5.

“Pope Francis’ leadership has not only reinvigorated the Catholic Church but also given a new momentum to relations with Judaism," said WJC President Ronald S. Lauder.

"Never in the past 2,000 years have relations between the Catholic Church and the Jewish people been so good."

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Catholic Church • Foreign policy • Pope Francis • Syria

soundoff (512 Responses)
  1. thorsehead observer

    tshorey2013
    hharri-The point that was being made was that the sayings of Jesus can be attibuted to earlier sources, not that those sources were any more wise or holy. Nearly everything attributed to Jesus including his life story (born of a virgin, miracles, crucificion and ressurection) came from earlier mythologies. By the way if you are trying to claim the superiority of your own world view it carries more weight if you capitalize your sentences and use grammatical English. Just a tip from your friendly Athie (as you label it).

    observer "Yes Horus and Buddha came before Jesus. So did many, many other gods and myths. And yes, many parts of the story of Jesus bear striking resemblance to those stories that came before him. And some of the things attributed to Jesus sound an awful lot like the things Buddha is supposed to have said."

    did anybody see the liars who posted these lies? sambo?

    September 11, 2013 at 10:59 pm |
  2. Jesus Christ Son of God

    Actually, take the pope-mobile with you. I would like to see if it can stand up to an assault, including chemical weapons. Call it god testing you.

    September 8, 2013 at 4:15 pm |
  3. Jesus Christ Son of God

    Pope, you want peace? Go to Syria, and check things out. And while you are there, make some suggestions on how to bring peace. I suggest bringing a big 'piece' in case you need to protect yourselft. Easy to sit in Rome and bark out your thoughts. Get into the trenches.

    September 8, 2013 at 3:52 pm |
  4. Keith B Rosenberg

    I am quite sure that the Pope's statement will get the same response as all others so far – rejected.

    September 7, 2013 at 9:22 pm |
  5. Pope on a Rope

    Pope condemns condems.

    September 6, 2013 at 6:54 pm |
    • Dippy

      it's condoms, dummy.

      September 9, 2013 at 2:44 am |
  6. Tom, Tom, the Other One

    Daniel Burkes's weapon against the opponents of unfounded faith: vapid stories that he hopes will only attract vapid commentary.

    September 5, 2013 at 7:47 pm |
    • Dippy

      Burke's, not Burkes's. Doesn't anyone know how to use an apostrophe?

      September 9, 2013 at 2:46 am |
  7. thisisfuntoread

    the comments here provide me some type of entertainment every once in awhile. religion and political threads are the best.

    September 5, 2013 at 1:08 pm |
  8. Thought Purification

    Pope should keep his eye on Dominican Republic; a local Catholic priest has been charged with child abuse.

    September 4, 2013 at 9:04 pm |
  9. brinzazas

    Многие люди очень боятся высоты... Но только не я! Я боюсь ширины.

    September 4, 2013 at 3:21 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      These kids today, it's like they're speaking a different language.

      September 4, 2013 at 3:23 pm |
    • Athy

      It's all Greek to me.

      September 4, 2013 at 3:28 pm |
    • Jake From State Farm

      It's like those French have a different word for everything. (Bonus points for whoever identifies the author of this line.)

      September 4, 2013 at 4:21 pm |
      • Dave

        Mais non! Mon pauve con Tous les mots sont les memes!!

        September 4, 2013 at 9:12 pm |
      • Akira

        What are you wearing, "Jake from State Farm?"

        September 5, 2013 at 7:36 pm |
  10. Don't care much for the sadducees and the pharisees

    But this Pope is a good man, looks like a true disciple of Almighty God.

    September 4, 2013 at 11:33 am |
    • The gospel of Christ is simple, let's keep it that way!

      :)

      September 4, 2013 at 11:35 am |
      • Mount of Olives

        For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
        John 3:16

        September 4, 2013 at 11:38 am |
        • Observer

          And whosoever never heard of him shall be sent to hell, no matter how good of a person they are. Makes sense, but only to God and believers.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:41 am |
        • save, don't condemn

          For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
          John 3:17

          September 4, 2013 at 11:45 am |
        • Observer

          save, don't condemn,

          ONLY if you heard of him. For billions of people, it's just "tough luck". Doesn't matter if they were the nicest, kindest, most compassionate person in the world, God sends them to hell. Makes sense to you.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:48 am |
        • correction

          God doesn't send them to hell for that.
          God's plan is to bring all his children back to him. That is why Jesus died and defeated hell.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:52 am |
        • Observer

          correction

          "God doesn't send them to hell for that. God's plan is to bring all his children back to him. That is why Jesus died and defeated hell."

          So you are saying that you don't have to be a believer to get to heaven or is there any other option besides hell?

          September 4, 2013 at 11:55 am |
        • correction

          ++So you are saying that you don't have to be a believer to get to heaven or is there any other option besides hell?++

          God has a plan of salvation for His whole creation, not just for the pious religious leaders. You can join His plan right now. Just ask.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:59 am |
        • Observer

          correction,

          You still haven't answered what becomes of the nicest, kindest, most compassionate person in the world who never heard of God. Heaven? Hell? or a third choice never mentioned in the Bible.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:03 pm |
        • correction

          ++You still haven't answered what becomes of the nicest, kindest, most compassionate person in the world who never heard of God. Heaven? Hell? or a third choice never mentioned in the Bible.++

          Jesus describes God going out of His way to welcome that person into heaven.
          Luke 15 (1-10)

          September 4, 2013 at 12:09 pm |
        • Observer

          correction,

          Nope. What your reference says is "there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”

          Someone who never heard of the Bible can't repent even IF they needed to.

          Still no answer.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
        • spam filter

          Yes – "correction" is still STUMPED!

          September 4, 2013 at 12:17 pm |
        • correction

          ++Still no answer.++

          I answered that God has a plan of salvation for His whole creation. And not just for those people who insist that God only hears their prayers and only saves them.
          Basically, I don't believe what you are saying is true. Only right-wing religious fundies and CNN Message Board atheists preach that.
          I don't know many Christians that profess what you say. Yes, there are some. But some of us believe God's plan is bigger than that.
          We are saved by Jesus. He is the judge. The man who spent time with the "wrong" people, like prost.itutes and tax collectors.
          He showed that God's grace is more generous than any pious religious leader could imagine.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
        • OTOH

          @correction,

          "God has a plan of salvation for His whole creation."

          If this "God" character has a plan, then it will be. You think that a perfect being's "plan" can be thwarted? If it is the "plan" for *everyone* to be "saved", how could **anyone** not be "saved"?

          September 4, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
        • spam filter

          Ah, "correction", so below, in the other post where you say "And according to you, when you die, that all ends. That's not reality. That is your opinion." – you seem to be trying to state "truths", just like how you started off in this post here. Now we learn that your Christian view is not even the same as other Christians' views. Sounds like opinion to me.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
        • correction

          OTOH
          ++If it is the "plan" for *everyone* to be "saved", how could **anyone** not be "saved"?++

          They don't want to be saved. They chose misery over serenity.

          spam filter
          Right, it is my opinion.
          If anything is universally true or real it must have a source. And that source does not come from a human being. It can't. Human beings are illogical and flawed creatures.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
        • Observer

          correction,

          "They don't want to be saved. They chose misery over serenity."

          Nope. Many choose not to believe because of all the nonsense and hypocrisy in the Bible.

          "If anything is universally true or real it must have a source. And that source does not come from a human being."

          Wrong. Human beings have created many real things like the Internet you are using right now.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:59 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          correction
          "They don't want to be saved. They chose misery over serenity."
          Stop lying...over and over you say what others think. You are wrong, over and over.

          Your statement is completely false. I searched for decades until I cam e to the realization that the whole thing was made up by ignorant men, a product of their imaginations to fill in their own ignorance. Since I discovered that I have given up the misery of chasing false beliefs, and found the serenity that comes with understanding that we do not know.

          September 4, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
        • spam filter

          correction: "Right, it is my opinion. If anything is universally true or real it must have a source. And that source does not come from a human being."

          Well I'm glad you agree it's your opinion. I'm also glad you used "If" starting your second sentence because what has mankind ever agreed upon over the ages with respect to anything that has not involved subjectivity.

          September 4, 2013 at 1:18 pm |
        • spam filter

          (and that includes all religions, of course)

          September 4, 2013 at 1:19 pm |
        • correction

          (and that includes all belief systems, including yours)

          September 4, 2013 at 1:39 pm |
        • truthprevails1

          Correction: It seems you are evading the issue. What happens to the 5 billion people on this wonderful planet who have either never heard of your god, have heard of it but don't believe in it or who believe in a different god?? It shouldn't be too difficult to answer. Keep in mind that if they have not heard of your god, they have not heard of your bible...so using scripture still won't answer the question.

          September 5, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
        • Caritas

          Observer:

          Here is the answer you are seeking from a Roman Catholic perspective, which would be that of Pope Francis: From section 846 of the Catholic catechism : "Those who, through no fault of their own, do not know the Gospel of Christ or his Church, but who nevertheless seek God with a sincere heart, and, moved by grace, try in their actions to do his will as they know it through the dictates of their conscience – those too may achieve eternal salvation.337"

          Roman Catholics are not literalists when it comes to the Bible – they rely on the Bible as interpreted through the magisterium ( collected teaching) of their church and that tradition includes historical and scientific scholarship.

          September 7, 2013 at 9:58 pm |
        • Observer

          Caritas,

          It's surprising to hear a religion admit that they don't believe every word of the Bible. IMO, this more liberal view is encouraging, but still leaves interpretation open to change and not necessarily for the better. Pope Francis does seem more open-minded and that is a good sign.

          September 7, 2013 at 10:10 pm |
    • correction

      Don't care much for the sadducees (right wing religious fundies) and the pharisees (new atheists)

      September 4, 2013 at 11:35 am |
      • My Dog is a jealous Dog

        I'm over 50 and have been an atheist since the "age of reason" – so am I a "new atheist"? What exactly is a "new atheist"?

        September 4, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
        • correction

          New atheists.

          Well, they are mostly all men. At least the leaders are. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Atheism

          September 4, 2013 at 12:53 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          correction
          What leaders. I am an atheist and I have no one leading me in my disbelief of ancient myths.

          Why do you have the need to label everyone?

          September 4, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
        • correction

          Probably for the same reason you like to label people.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:59 pm |
        • Observer

          correction

          "New atheists. Well, they are mostly all men. At least the leaders are."

          So are you saying that men are more apt to question logically than women?

          September 4, 2013 at 1:04 pm |
        • Polycarp

          Richard Cranium
          correction
          What leaders. I am an atheist and I have no one leading me in my disbelief of ancient myths.

          Why do you have the need to label everyone?
          >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
          Yes you do Richard, yourself is leading yourself.

          September 11, 2013 at 1:03 am |
        • Observer

          It seems that a large number of right-wingers need to put labels on everyone to maintain a simple-minded vision of everything being black or white.

          September 11, 2013 at 1:06 am |
    • Jeremy

      I agree! I like him a lot!

      September 4, 2013 at 11:49 am |
    • Doobs

      If he's such a good man, why hasn't he turned the criminals he and his organization have been hiding for decades over to the proper authorities?

      He must be busy with more important things, tweeting selfies and profundities like "Never again war!"

      September 4, 2013 at 12:12 pm |
    • Wendell

      "this pope is a good man" who protects and hides pedophiles in order to save from bankruptcy the corrupt cult that pays his salary.

      September 4, 2013 at 12:26 pm |
      • Jeremy

        Perhaps he will. I'm praying he does.

        Rome was not built in a day.

        September 4, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
  11. Reality

    Although not a significant life hazard, the "changing" of bread/wine to body/blood is a significant hazard to rational thinking. Time the pope faces up to this practice of dark age voodoo.

    September 4, 2013 at 10:51 am |
    • Lawrence of Arabia

      Indeed the Catholic church erred on the idea of transubstantiation. What they should have gotten from scripture is that the bread and wine are mere symbols of the New Covenant. Similar to wearing a wedding ring as an outward symbol of your union with your wife, the Lord's Table was to be an outward sign of your part in the New Covenant with Christ.

      September 4, 2013 at 11:06 am |
      • Penn

        Funny that a god can't get his message across to all of you wingnuts consistently.

        September 4, 2013 at 11:16 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          So when you don't understand something, instead of asking a legitimate question that we might reason together, you resort to ad hominem?

          September 4, 2013 at 11:27 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          People are prone to misinterpret according to their own bias. The Catholic church, since the 400's has leaned on tradition and works-righteousness, so their interpretation of the Lord's Table has a works-related bent to it. In order to understand anything properly, remove your own bias, look at what it is being said and how it is being said, and in what context. Only then can one determine exactly what is meant by what is said.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:30 am |
        • Jane

          Apart from Penn calling you a wingnut, he made a very good point. So, try to answer, why is it that an omnipotent being can't get the same message out to all of you? Or are your tooth fairy's "perfect" "creations" a little flawed...

          I think "wingnuts" describes the various Christian types well. You've got to be pretty crazy, or just stupid, to believe their crazy stories.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:33 am |
        • Jane

          The bias argument fails for the case of an omnipotent being. Consider what is meant by omnipotent.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:35 am |
        • correction

          +++, why is it that an omnipotent being can't get the same message out to all of you? ~~~
          Pride, selfishness, closed-mindedness, arrogance, self-pity and dishonesty prevent human beings from understanding what God is trying to tell us.
          He speaks to our hearts, not just our minds, so the stories really are not that stupid. Just because something is not completely factual does not mean it is not true.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:40 am |
        • Jane

          Nope. My point regarding your supposedly omnipotent creature stands. Such a creature would be able to get the same message through regardless, stupid.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:45 am |
        • correction

          God knows all there is to know. God knows everything about you. God knows why you feel so bad about yourself, you have to bring down others by calling them "stupid" to feel better about yourself. God knows deep down you feel stupid, or else you wouldn't say that.
          God knows you are not stupid, though. So God doesn't treat you like that.
          Let go of your pride and self-righteousness; find God.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:48 am |
        • Observer

          correction

          "God knows why you feel so bad about yourself, you have to bring down others"

          So he understands the millions of his followers who hypocritically bring down gays or pro-choice supporters?

          September 4, 2013 at 11:51 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          correction
          "Let go of your pride and self-righteousness"

          Like yours, telling us what god wants and what he knows.
          You haven't a clue, and can't even show that your god exists.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:53 am |
        • correction

          ++So he understands the millions of his followers who hypocritically bring down gays or pro-choice supporters?++

          He has a lot to say about hypocrisy. Especially when it comes from religious leaders. And not all followers bring down gays or pro-choice supporters.
          And GOd oves those gays and pro-choice supporters. Even the hypocritical ones.

          ++Richard Cranium

          We all know you are here looking for God. It is not my fault.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:57 am |
        • OTOH

          @correction,

          How about if YOU "Let go of your pride and self-righteousness;" and say, "I don't know."

          The fact that you trumpet your hunches and opinions (and those of ancient Middle Eastern Israelites) as the ultimate truth is the height of arrogance.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:01 pm |
        • correction

          i talk about what i know

          September 4, 2013 at 12:06 pm |
        • correction

          Austin, is that me?

          September 4, 2013 at 12:13 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          It's gotta be me.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          The Richard Cranium directly above this is just the pathetic name theif.

          Crrection.
          I am not looking for god. You do not know why I am here. Stop violating your gods commandments. You again just bore false witness.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:40 pm |
        • correction

          You are just like the right wing fundie religious leaders! They say the same kind of things.
          2 peas in a pod!

          September 4, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          correcting correction
          "You are just like the right wing fundie religious leaders"

          No, I am not. You are again lying.

          September 4, 2013 at 1:44 pm |
        • Polycarp

          Observer
          correction

          "God knows why you feel so bad about yourself, you have to bring down others"

          So he understands the millions of his followers who hypocritically bring down gays or pro-choice supporters?
          >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
          Pro-choice , gays are the ones who declared war on themselves, that inner voice within them that tells them to do good and avoid evil. They cannot despise this voice without violating their human dignity, nor can they follow it consistently, unless they acknowledge a Supreme Lawgiver and Judge

          September 11, 2013 at 1:09 am |
        • Observer

          Polycarp,

          "Pro-choice , gays are the ones who declared war on themselves"

          Skip the HYPOCRISY. There is very close to ZERO chance that you believe everything in the Bible so don't be a hypocrite that picks on othesr for not believing it all EITHER.

          September 11, 2013 at 1:17 am |
      • Austin

        Lawrence of Arabia, is that me?

        September 4, 2013 at 11:46 am |
      • Bill Deacon

        For Lawrence- John 6:48-68

        September 4, 2013 at 2:28 pm |
    • correction

      you don't think you do completely irrational things, too? without God there is not true reality. There is just what you think, imagine and believe. And according to you, when you die, that all ends. That's not reality. That is your opinion.

      September 4, 2013 at 11:38 am |
      • Austin

        correction, is that me?

        September 4, 2013 at 11:47 am |
      • spam filter

        correction: " without God there is not true reality."

        Lol. Care to prove that?

        Just another way of expressing belief in absolute or moral "truth" that is nothing without the minds and partial agreement over time by some men.

        Tell us how you came to know about such "truth".

        September 4, 2013 at 11:52 am |
        • correction

          I don't believe in God because of partial agreement over time by some men.
          God exists and is real and available to us all today.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:03 pm |
        • correction

          Topher, is that me?

          September 4, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
        • spam filter

          I see we have a reading comprehension issue here.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
        • Polycarp

          When and where did human intellect originate????

          September 11, 2013 at 1:12 am |
        • Observer

          Polycarp

          "When and where did human intellect originate????"

          If your answer is "God", then where did God originate? Now we are back to where we started.

          September 11, 2013 at 1:14 am |
  12. palintwit

    Every tea party patriot dreams of someday being able to crawl a mile over broken glass just to sniff the tire tracks of the truck that took Sarah Palin's dirty underwear to the laundry.

    September 4, 2013 at 10:41 am |
    • Penn

      Palin's bound to end up as a cheesy talk show host with an audience of folk like you describe.

      September 4, 2013 at 11:18 am |
    • correction

      I bet you $100,000,000,000 that you think more about Sarah Palin than any tea party patriot. Ever. Just today you have thought more about Sarah Palin than any of them have ever thought of her in their lifetime.

      September 4, 2013 at 11:44 am |
      • Ed

        How will you prove that to win the bet? You just made an assertion that you know can't be tested. YOU COWARD!

        September 4, 2013 at 11:48 am |
        • correction

          I have a device that measures the amount of blood that rushes to a man's penis when the name "Sarah Palin" is mentioned.
          So far 'Palin's twit' leads the way.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:51 am |
        • correction

          The device is my mouth.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
        • palintwit

          Now that's funny! ^

          September 4, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
        • palintwit

          I put my penis in his mouth and think of sarah palin.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:57 pm |
        • palintwit

          palintwit imposter at 12:57 pm. ^

          September 4, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
      • palintwit

        @ correction... Just mention the words 'Sarah Palin' to a tea party patriot and watch his size 34 clown shoes start to flap wildly up and down.

        September 4, 2013 at 12:01 pm |
        • correction

          u love to hate her. your identaty depends on her.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
  13. lamelionheart

    Can anyone tell me as to how Syria obtained chemical weapons..? Who sold to Syria the chemical weapons or gave them the formula to make the chemical weapons..?

    September 4, 2013 at 2:17 am |
    • lamelionheart

      Could it be Tony Stark Industries,,?

      September 4, 2013 at 2:26 am |
      • Bootyfunk

        it's definitely not Neft...

        September 4, 2013 at 3:47 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Chemical weapons are much like pesticides – particularly organophosphorous compounds. It's not difficult to set up a small chemical plant to make them. Feedstocks for such plants would be simple compunds difficult to trace.

      September 4, 2013 at 7:49 am |
  14. Bootyfunk

    he should condemn the use of bibles.
    instead, they condemn cognitive thinking.

    i notice the pope condemns child molestation, but does nothing to stem the tide of child r.apists in the church.
    maybe less condemning and more cooperating with police investigations so molester priests go to prison.
    but that would be protecting children instead of the church....

    September 4, 2013 at 1:42 am |
  15. Tom, Tom, the Other One

    Does this pope condemn the use of bioweapons like those used by his God – the plagues of Egypt and other punishments up to the present?

    September 3, 2013 at 10:29 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      lot more of that stuff to come. in the End Days, Jesus opens his daddy's seven seals, releasing death, war, plague, famine, etc., slaughtering 2/3 of the people left on the planet - mmmm, so much love and compassion from the messiah.

      September 4, 2013 at 1:44 am |
      • Bill Deacon

        It's not like you weren't warned.

        September 4, 2013 at 8:50 am |
        • Doobs

          No, Boof Deacon, you're here to remind everyone and make your proxy threats.

          Feel better now? Gotta keep the shaky shaky away.

          September 4, 2013 at 10:45 am |
        • Bill Deacon

          It probably wouldn't be that bad to have a conversation with you if you weren't deluded on so many levels.

          September 4, 2013 at 10:59 am |
        • ME II

          @Bill Deacon,
          So, Assad's use of chemical weapons would have been okay if he had warned the Syrians before hand?

          September 4, 2013 at 11:03 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          The day I see a locust with the face of a man, the hair of a woman, the mouth of alion and the tail of a scorpion wearing a tiny crown and armour or a 7 headed dragon spewing torrents of water while hunting for pregnant women to eat, I'll drop to my knees and beg Jesus to forgive me.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:03 am |
        • Colin

          Oh, the irony. Dea-con calling someone else "deluded". Funny!

          September 4, 2013 at 11:05 am |
        • Joe

          Bill Deacon, your "warned" statement has a whiff of Pascal's Wager to it. Actually, it reeks of it. And you stink, with threats like that.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:07 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Doc, I see you are unfamiliar with the term: "Metaphore"

          September 4, 2013 at 11:10 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Doc, if you're honestly curious about what all of those symbols mean in the book of Revelation, check out this book "Because the Time is Near."

          September 4, 2013 at 11:15 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          So you must be a member of a non-literalist Christian sect...
          Would you care to explain to the uninitiated what exactly those bits in Revelation are alluding to?

          September 4, 2013 at 11:16 am |
        • Doobs

          Deluded how, Boof Deacon?

          Like believing that ritual cannibalism is a holy and sacred thing?

          Like believing that going into a box and telling another person that you said a cuss word is necessary?

          Like believing that saying a cuss word somehow offends your psycho killer tyrant enough that he will send you to hell, or at least purgatory unless you go into a box, tell the shaman what you said and let him chant a while to make things all better?

          Like believing that Crimen sollicitationis is fine?

          Like vigorously defending the organization that has conspired for decades to conceal criminal acts and hide criminals who raped thousands of children?

          September 4, 2013 at 11:18 am |
        • Penn

          Lawrence, I see that you are unfamiliar with your spelling checker.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:19 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Doc, being a Bible literalist means that you take the scripture in the sense it was intended... When it's speaking in narrative, you take it that way, when it uses metaphore, you understand it as such. It's no different than reading any other book – you read it in the sense that it was intended. As for explaining Revelation in THIS forum, it would take a LONG time to draw out all of the metaphore used to describe those demons. As I said, check out "Because the Time is Near," the author is very reputable, and an outstanding scholar, and he takes the reader through each verse of Revelation to explain all the metaphore.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:22 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Penn, nope. I've never been a good speller, sorry if that offends you, but it's just a fact, I can't spell.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:26 am |
        • Observer

          "being a Bible literalist means that you take the scripture in the sense it was intended..."

          In other words, don't take words to mean what everyone knows them to mean, but make your own interpretation for something written thousands of years ago. It comes in handy to try to pretend there aren't errors and nonsense.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:29 am |
        • ME II

          @Lawrence of Arabia,
          So, exactly how do you tell what is "intended" as metaphor and what is "intended" literally? For example, creation week?

          September 4, 2013 at 11:29 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @Lawrence
          Angels, demons, ifrit, djinn, cherubim, seraphim, thrones, dominions, virtues, powers, principalities, archangels, incubi, succubi, golems, dragons, talking donkeys, snakes and flaming foliage – none of these things exist.

          Supernatural enti/ties are fictional.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:31 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          ME II, Context is always a good clue, followed by the actual words used. You mention creation week, the context says "and there was evening, and there was morning, one day." And it says this over and over. When something is repeated like that, that is a Hebraic literary device of the day that was meant to add emphasis, similar to how we would underscore a text today, or add an exclaimation mark. Furthermore, the actual word that was used for "day" is the Hebrew word "Yom" which means "one literal Day," as in Yom Kippur – the "Day" of Atonement. (which incidentally, is coming up next Friday)

          September 4, 2013 at 11:34 am |
        • Jane

          The context argument fails for an omnipotent being. Next.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:37 am |
        • ME II

          @Lawrence of Arabia,
          So, you are saying that the creation week was literally a week, seven ~24 hour days?

          How is it that all evidence points to that not being the case?

          September 4, 2013 at 11:37 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Doc, you may say that they don't exist, but you cannot make an absolute negative statement like that. What you have to say is, regarding angels, demons, etc., I remain agnostic. In other words, you don't know. I make the statement, regarding invisible pink unicorns, I remain an agnostic. In each case, you've got to find out which one aligns with observable reality. As with angels/demons, or invisible pink unicorns, we cannot "see" either one with our eyes, but in one case, the creature was an invention of the imagination of some atheist somewhere who though he came up with a good retort, and the other is spoken of in a book that many claim to be divinely inspired. OK, so now you've got a job. What does the book say? Not necessarily about angels/demons, but can it be found reliable on whatever else it talks about? Well, that is a case for investigation by an honest, and unbiased mind.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:41 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Of all the books of the Bible, the first and last are by far the least believable.
          Genesis has been proven false – hence the majority of Christian sects now believe it to be purely metaphorical.
          Revelation has the benefit of being "prophecy", so there is always the possibility, no matter how remote, that the 7 Seals will open up and the aforementioned plague of armour wearing locusts will descend on humanity.
          But I wouldn't bet on it.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:42 am |
        • Observer

          Lawrence of Arabia,

          It wasn't an atheist that put unicorns (not pink or invisible) into the Bible as "fact".

          September 4, 2013 at 11:44 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          ME II, the evidence must be examined from an unbiased mind. In other words, what glasses are you using to read the evidence? What is your paradigm? The scriptures tell us that everything was created mature and full grown. Trees were not created from a seed, or the animals would have nothing to eat. Man was not created from an egg and sperm, but was manifest full grown from the earth. Because there was maturity in all creation from the moment they were formed, a scientific study into the age of rocks and trees and stars are somewhat skewed because the age calculations assume that things have always been as they are now.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:45 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @Lawrence
          All mythology is "true" in the sense that it reveals aspects of human nature in a more easily digested way than, say, psychology, sociology or sociobiology – but it is not factually true.
          Myths often have a basis in reality, but a story that is "inspired by true events" is not factual.
          To wit: Gilgamesh was a real person. Archaeologists have unearthed the Kingdom of Uruk over which he ruled as well as doc.umentation confirming his reign.
          That doesn't mean that he was a demi-god who ruled for 125 years and took the occasional trip to the underworld.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:47 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Observer, I know that. All I'm saying is that if a book makes such a radical claim as the existence of angels and demons, then do you dismiss it right away, or do you investigate what else the book says in order to determine the verasity of the source. In other words, if you knew a man who never told lies and never joked, and he said to you that he was giving you his vacation house – you'd be apt to believe him, no matter how incredible it sounded.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:48 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Doc, well, you might not be able to span that gap just yet, but lets keep cruising for a minute. Archeology has turned up the ancient city of Babylon, they've found artifacts from the reign of King David, and even found proof of the "slave revolt" in Egyptian writings that corroborate the Exodus story. So, lets just take archeological evidence and align that with the stories the Bible tells. They align at least with that. I mean, it's not like the Bible talks about fictional societies or places or people. I'm not asking you to make the leap to God yet, I'm just asking you to look at the historicity of the Bible as supported by archeology. So, once we know that at least the historical aspects are corroborated, then how do we find evidence for the miraculous? Well, a little deeper digging perhaps?

          September 4, 2013 at 11:53 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Just for Lawrence:
          A Treatise on Young Earth Creationism

          Man is the predilect object of Creation and the entire Universe exists as it does simply to have us in it.

          The Universe only appears to be billions of years old because The Creator willed it thus.

          God is anthropocentric – it says here right on the label.

          The rest of the universe, oh so simple and boring compared to humanity, is simply window dressing – God really concentrated when making The Earth as opposed to, say – the Andromeda galaxy.

          You see, when God was creating the Earth he placed it in a time dilation bubble in order to give it the attention it needed.

          This is how we see light from distant galaxies – they are, relativistically speaking, billions of years old – but thanks to God's chronoton singularity, we are only a few thousand years old.

          God bestowed certain seemingly normal objects with chronoton field generation capability, like Moses' staff and Noah's ark.

          How else did the seas part or the ark able to support two of every animal despite it's physical dimensions?

          In recent studies, credible theologians have revealed that the physical dimensions of Noah's Ark were actually much, much smaller than those depicted in the Bible. They theorize that the source texts were modified to be more believable as nobody would be able to imagine all life on Earth fitting into a box no bigger than a phone booth.

          The oral histories of a small, reclusive sect of ultra-orthodox Jews say that the Ark made a "Vworrrp Vworrrrp" sound before it gradually faded from sight. Stone tablets retrieved from this same sect show that the name "Noah" is actually an ancient Hebrew word from a long lost dialect that translates to "Healer".

          They also found evidence that Moses' staff was really a small, hand held device about the size of a pen that emitted a high pitched squeal and glowing green light. "Staff" also appears to be a mistranslation. The original word was "screwdriver".

          Leviticus is full of rules of conduct for the Hebrew people, but there was one particular passage that caused so much confusion and strife at the Nicene Council that they elected to omit it from the Bible.

          Scraps of that ancient text were found in the same cave as the Dead Sea Scrolls but have yet to be publically released. The text seems to be proclamations from a long forgotten prophet, but there is little context to make any sense of them.

          Thus far, scholars have translated: "run", "don't blink", and a thoroughly confusing psalm praising the virtues of decorative neckwear.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:53 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Well, I'm out of here for the day. I appreciate the honest questions by the way. It's nice to reason together without injury. You are a credit, gentlemen...

          September 4, 2013 at 11:55 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          OK, I'll say this one thing before I go... Trying to convince someone of the miraculous who doesn't believe in the miraculous is like convincing a blind man that the sun is bright. That's why I say just start with archeology to corroborate the historicity of scripture and go from there.
          Have fun, later!

          September 4, 2013 at 11:58 am |
        • Observer

          Lawrence of Arabia,

          The problem with credibility for the Bible is that besides some good morals, it is loaded with errors, contradictions, hypocrisy and nonsense.

          September 4, 2013 at 11:58 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @LAWRENCE

          As for Exodus –

          Is it more likely that the relatively unencu.mbered Jewish slaves were able to cross a body of water at low tide with relative ease compared to their pursuers who were laden with armour, weapons, horses etc, or that the water magically split apart to make them a dry path?

          September 4, 2013 at 11:59 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          I guess since certain aspect of t he Epic of Gilgamesh are based in reality, the rest of it must be true as well.
          He really was a demi-god.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:01 pm |
        • ME II

          @Lawrence of Arabia,
          " the evidence must be examined from an unbiased mind. In other words, what glasses are you using to read the evidence? What is your paradigm?"

          The age of the Earth is consistently dated by mutliple independent methods, such as radiomentric (multiple isotopes and methods), sea floor banding, Thermoluminescence, dendochronology (consistent with anyway), all consistent with a very old earth.

          "The scriptures tell us that everything was created mature and full grown."

          This is your "unbiased mind"? Were the stars created old with their light already in transit millions of light-years away? If so then what about the ones that exploded over 10,000 light-years away? Did they ever exist?

          "somewhat skewed because the age calculations assume that things have always been as they are now."

          You have nothing to base this on but the Bible, correct?

          September 4, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
        • ME II

          @Lawrence of Arabia,
          " That's why I say just start with archeology to corroborate the historicity of scripture and go from there."

          That is a text-book case of confirmation bias, exclude the data that disproves your hypothesis.

          September 4, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
        • Polycarp

          They are jealous that they cannot control God, thus their own selves ( the ultimate one is, they cannot stop themselves from dying, they could live to be 100 years old, but it's gonna happen without their permission, they aren't strong enough, or ever be to stop it from happening ). They are also making sport out of violating their own human dignity with them selves.

          September 11, 2013 at 1:21 am |
        • Observer

          Polycarp,

          No atheist has EVER tried to control God. Only believers could. Talk to them.

          September 11, 2013 at 1:28 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 and Eric Marrapodi with daily contributions from CNN's worldwide newsgathering team.