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October 9th, 2013
02:27 PM ET

Creationists taunt atheists in latest billboard war

By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

(CNN)– A new video billboard in New York's Times Square has a message from creationists, "To all of our atheist friends: Thank God you're wrong."

The video advertisement at 42nd Street and Eighth Avenue in Manhattan is one of several billboards going up this week in New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles, paid for by Answers in Genesis.

Answers in Genesis is best known as the multimillion-dollar Christian ministry behind the Creation Museum outside Cincinnati.

The museum presents the case for Young Earth creationism, following what it says is a literal interpretation of the book of Genesis, which says the Earth was created by God in six days less than 10,000 years ago.

Ken Ham, president of Answers in Genesis, said the idea for the advertisements came from an atheist billboard in Times Square at Christmas.

During the holidays, the American Atheists put up a billboard with images of Santa Claus and Jesus that read: "Keep the Merry, dump the myth."

“The Bible says to contend for the faith,” Ham said. “We thought we should come up with something that would make a statement in the culture, a bold statement, and direct them to our website.

"We're not against them personally. We're not trying to attack them personally, but we do believe they're wrong," he said.

"From an atheist's perspective, they believe when they die, they cease to exist. And we say 'no, you're not going to cease to exist; you're going to spend eternity with God or without God. And if you're an atheist, you're going to be spending it without God.' "

Dave Silverman, president of the American Atheists, said he felt sad for creationists when he saw the billboards.

"They refuse to look at the real world. They refuse to look at the evidence we have, and they offer none," Silverman said. "They might as well be saying, 'Thank Zeus you're wrong' or 'Thank Thor you're wrong.' "

Silverman said he welcomed another competitor to marketplace, noting that after atheists bought a billboard two years ago in Times Square that read "You KNOW it's a myth," the Catholic League purchased competing space at the entrance to the Lincoln Tunnel for a sign that read "You KNOW it's true."

"I would suggest, if they're actually trying to attract atheists, they should talk about proof and reason to believe in their god, not just some pithy play on words," Silverman said.

Ham says part of the goal of the campaign is to draw people to the website for Answers in Genesis, where he offers a lengthy post on his beliefs for the proof of God.

Ham insists that this campaign is in keeping with their overall mission. "We're a biblical authority ministry. We're really on about the Bible and the Gospel. Now, we do have a specialty in the area of the creation account and Genesis because that's where we say God's word has come under attack."

Ham said Answers in Genesis made the decision to split its marketing budget for the ministry between a regional campaign for the museum and this billboard campaign, rather than a national campaign.

IRS filings for the ministry in recent years have shown a yearly operating budget of more than $25 million. Ham said the marketing budget is about 2% of that, about $500,000 a year. Though they are waiting for all the bills to come due for this campaign, he said he expected it to cost between $150,000 and $200,000.

Silverman noted that his billboards were not video and cost approximately $25,000 last year.  He said another campaign was in the works for this year.

"They're throwing down the gauntlet, and we're picking it up," Silverman said, adding that his group would "slap them in the face" with it.

Ham said that despite criticism from other Christians for being negative and the usual criticisms from secularists he received on his social media accounts, the advertisements have been a success.

"We wanted people talking about them, and we wanted discussion about this. We wanted people thinking about God," Ham said.

The Creation Museum and the theory of Young Earth creationism are widely reviled by the broader science community.

In a YouTube video posted last year titled "Creationism Is Not Appropriate For Children," Bill Nye the Science Guy slammed creationism, imploring parents not to teach it to their children. "We need scientifically literate voters and taxpayers for the future," he said. "We need engineers that can build stuff and solve problems."

The museum responded with its own video. 

For the past 30 years, Gallup Inc. has been tracking American opinions about creationism.

In June 2012, Gallup's latest findings showed that 46% of Americans believed in creationism, 32% believed in evolution guided by God, and 15% believed in atheistic evolution.

For as long as Gallup has conducted the survey, creationism has remained far and away the most popular answer, with 40% to 47% of Americans surveyed saying they believed that God created humans in their present form at one point within the past 10,000 years.

The Creation Museum said it recently welcomed its 2 millionth visitor since its opening in 2007.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • Christianity • Creationism • New York • Science

soundoff (8,748 Responses)
  1. MAX

    Dodo, u can't debate his existence cause u can't win

    October 11, 2013 at 12:55 am |
  2. sandvichmancer

    Once again, people manage to prove that it doesn't matter who someone is or what they believe in. Chances are high the individual is a bitter insipid idiot, only capable of defining themselves by pointing the finger and declaring who they think is wrong and how terrible that makes them.
    With so much need for funds and effort to improve the world, the religious who believe themselves to find favor by acts of charity and the non-religious who believe themselves high and above the petty disputes that religion causes both equally prove themselves to be terrible people with the only difference being the color of the flag they wave.

    October 11, 2013 at 12:55 am |
  3. Bob

    I'm not going to debate the existence of God with anyone here as it would serve no purpose. However, I will say that I took the young-earth creationism class through Liberty University. I will tell you as a fellow Christian that the majority of material presented in that class was utter garbage and anyone who would present such half baked material in such a condescending tone at a college level should be absolutely ashamed of themselves. Creationists have no right to tell anyone they are wrong about anything. The Bible is not a science book and should not be treated as such. You don't get to tell atheists they are wrong. The majority of what is spewed by creationists, and even most Christians, is nothing more than regurgitated rhetoric. Atheists are not the people that have driven me and many others to the point of wanting nothing to do with the church. Christians are at fault for that. I get along great with all of my atheists, agnostic, and other friends. I don't have many Christian friends though because I dare to question things. It's just tiring seeing the same old crap.

    October 11, 2013 at 12:51 am |
    • Deity #7245b

      so why still "believe" in one god? a soul? an afterlife?

      no basis for any 🙂 But still....this Earth is fairly fantastic 🙂

      Be well Bob, live in this world, don't fantasize about another...

      October 11, 2013 at 1:19 am |
  4. MAX

    U r a liar

    October 11, 2013 at 12:50 am |
  5. Bill

    Whichever way you look at it, the most absurd idea of all is that this world, this universe, this existence we live in could have randomly aligned itself without any guidance whatsoever.

    October 11, 2013 at 12:46 am |
    • Steve

      What are the odd's against being struck by lightning? Of winning the lottery? Of a pitcher throwing a fastball and killing a bird who just happens to fly into the balls flight path? Yet, the first two happen ALL the time, and the third has happened more than once. And that's just in the last 100 years and JUST on our planet. Now imagine something as large as the universe (unimaginable), and all the opportunities that present themselves. As a matter of statistical probability, there is BOUND to be life, and honestly, we're probably not alone.

      October 11, 2013 at 12:53 am |
      • mkar

        Odds of winning lottery is tickets sold / tickets not sold. That could be 75%.

        October 11, 2013 at 1:02 am |
      • atheistbootyfunk

        go make a universe, idiot

        October 11, 2013 at 1:19 am |
      • Opposing View

        Steve… The problem with your logic is that some things you're assuming are just plain "impossible" no matter how far you calculate the odds. For example, it's totally 100% impossible for a chaotic explosion to create order. It cannot be done, no matter how great the odds. The order we have in the universe did not come from a chaotic explosion. Instead, an intelligent force arranged the order.

        It is also not possible for a chaotic explosion to generate, for all practical purposes, perfectly round planets. It's just not possible no matter how far you calculate the odds. You cannot blow up a bunch of stuff and come up with perfectly round planets. Perfectly round planets do not come from a chaotic explosion. So how do you explain the near unlimited number of perfectly round planets we have in our heavens? No explosion could have created them. Nor has scientists ever been able to recreate such things in a laboratory experiment. All the scientists have and believe in is nothing more than theories. And it's totally false…

        October 11, 2013 at 1:48 am |
        • HotAirAce

          I suggest you read "Atom" and "A Universe From Nothing," both by Lawrence Krauss, to get a better understanding of how the universe, solar systems and planets likely formed. And re: perfectly round planets, many (most?) are not perfect spheres, with our own Earth being a perfect example of an oblate spheroid.

          October 11, 2013 at 2:15 am |
        • HotAirAce

          And I further suggest that you do a little research to learn the scientific meaning of "theory."

          October 11, 2013 at 2:17 am |
        • somethingstellar

          You act like people think the big bang happened and planets and stars fell out of it exactly as it is or right after hahaha all that was created was the elements and the fundamental building blocks and a hell of a lot of dust and gasses and radiation and everything gradually came to form as they are known today over billions of years. So no planets and life cannot be created from a chaotic explosion but when you have the ingredients and give it billions of years of gravitational attraction then pressure and some energy and yeah its entirely possible. One of the theories out there about two colliding alternate universes creating the big bang makes more sense than god did it.

          October 11, 2013 at 2:45 am |
        • Arthur Bryant

          To point out just one of the many ludicrous fallacies you're vomiting......the planets are NOT "perfectly round".

          October 11, 2013 at 4:06 pm |
    • Emmanuel Goldstein

      It is only absurd if you are not intelligent enough to understand. Those of us who are intelligent and educated actually understand it quite well.

      October 11, 2013 at 12:54 am |
    • redzoa

      No more absurd than "believing" that snowflakes are produced without any "guidance." Although absence of evidence is not evidence of absence, it does provide reasonable justification for rejecting a proposition which lacks any verifiable evidence.

      October 11, 2013 at 12:56 am |
  6. devin

    Although I unequivocally disagree with their conclusions, I've always been able to sympathize with and afford a certain level of respect for the agnostic. The atheist position on the other hand, I can't decide which is more pronounced, their naivete or plain silliness.

    October 11, 2013 at 12:45 am |
    • Ben

      You are confused. I am both agnostic and atheist. I am agnostic in that I do not know that there are no gods anywhere in the universe, and I am atheistic in that I do not actually believe in any of the claims of gods being real. If an agnostic isn't sure that any gods exist then they don't actually believe in any either, which makes them also atheists.

      It's a simple question, either you believe in a god, or gods, or you do not. If you believe in at least one god then you are a theist. If you do not, then you are an atheist. How can you be an agnostic who actually believes in a god, while also not being sure?

      I know of no atheists personally who claim to know that gods are completely impossible. We just are not convinced by the claims that certain gods are real, that's all. If you want to make us believers it's up to you to dig up the evidence.

      October 11, 2013 at 12:57 am |
      • devin

        No, I'm not confused, although I should have used the term strong atheism.

        October 11, 2013 at 1:07 am |
        • Ben

          "Strong" atheism, as in the claim to somehow have gnostic knowledge that no gods exist anywhere? Not even Dawkins would make such a claim, because it's unprovable. As unprovable as Christians claiming that the Hindu gods aren't actually real, or anyone's claim that Thor never existed.

          Certain gods I can have definite ideas about. I'm absolutely sure that our sun isn't also a god, and the usual definition of the Christian god is just too illogical to be even a remote possibility. There is no way that a perfectly good being with the power to stop suffering doesn't do just that. That's just common sense.

          Well, getting late, so good night folks.

          October 11, 2013 at 1:48 am |
    • devin

      From my perspective, sense is not very common in an atheistic word view.

      October 11, 2013 at 1:28 am |
  7. ScottCA

    I find it very noticeable that the one thing absent from that outrageously large claim made in the post, is that there is not a single shred of evidence presented to back that extraordinarily large claim.

    An extraordinary claim requires extraordinary evidence to back it.

    That poster fails as it nothing but total and complete lunacy written by imbeciles.

    October 11, 2013 at 12:23 am |
    • Opposing View

      There always has been proof that God exists. Even proof you are well aware of (ever heard of Jesus Christ?). So what you really mean is – "there is no evidence you are willing to accept." Sounds like a personal problem to me...

      October 11, 2013 at 12:28 am |
      • Observer

        Opposing View,

        Jesus may or may not have been the son of God. Like everything else about God, you have ZERO PROOF.

        October 11, 2013 at 12:31 am |
        • Opposing View

          For people who believe, there is plenty of proof Jesus Christ was the son of God. For atheists, no amount of proof will be proof enough...

          Regarding your counter claim, you have zero proof he wasn't. Therefore, without proof to the contrary, whatever opinion you do have it don't mean a thing…

          October 11, 2013 at 12:43 am |
        • Observer

          Opposing View

          "For atheists, no amount of proof will be proof enough..."

          Nonsense. It would take God less than 5 seconds to prove he exists. A simple announcement to the world would do. It would supposedly save BILLIONS of souls, but 5 seconds is apparently too much to ask for.

          October 11, 2013 at 12:45 am |
        • MAX

          U r a liar. The stooges, u filthy germ

          October 11, 2013 at 12:52 am |
        • Observer

          faith,

          No matter what name you use, CNN can identify you and prevent you from getting on here.

          Everytime you LIE and slander me, I will report you for violation of the Rules of Conduct that you LIED about agreeing to.

          You've been reported AGAIN. You need to decide if you want to continue using this blog.

          October 11, 2013 at 12:56 am |
        • atheistbootyfunk

          great argument with yourself, you idiot! observer vs opposing view!

          could u be more obvious! lol

          go make a grain of sand. u wll be god the instant u do. stupid horse's rear end

          October 11, 2013 at 1:27 am |
        • Opposing View

          Observer… You stated – "Nonsense. It would take God less than 5 seconds to prove he exists. A simple announcement to the world would do. It would supposedly save BILLIONS of souls, but 5 seconds is apparently too much to ask for."…

          Where have you been? God has already proven he exists. He did so when he sent his only begotten son to earth – Jesus Christ. So why haven't you accepted him?

          As for saving billions of souls. God is not trying to save billions of souls because the bulk of them are devils. God only wants to save the sheep. And every sheep is going to be saved anyway. A real sheep has no problem with believing. Only a devil has a problem with believing...

          October 11, 2013 at 1:28 am |
        • Ben

          OP
          Again, why is it so difficult for you to see that the Gospels are just stories, not "proof" of anything?

          October 11, 2013 at 1:40 am |
        • Observer

          Opposing View,

          Less than FIVE SECONDS to end all the controversy and save BILLIONS OF SOULS.

          It's too much to ask.

          October 11, 2013 at 2:26 am |
        • FYI

          Observer,

          Reporting @faith(etc.) by ? number of people only gets his posts (and the replies to them) put "under moderation" and they disappear from general viewing automatically. I don't know if anyone who's in charge ever looks at them or not. It seems as if they either cannot or will not permanently ban him. I have a couple of guesses, but I certainly don't wish to be banned for posing them.

          October 11, 2013 at 2:49 am |
      • Ben

        Jesus is claimed to be the son of God like Hercules is claimed to be the son of Jupiter. There were dozens of demigods floating around in the mythologies of that time. Should we accept them all based on mere claims?

        Even amongst the people who all believe in the God of Abraham, neither Muslims nor Jews accept Jesus's divinity. Jews sure don't accept him as the Messiah, and it's their thing to define, isn't it? Jesus never fulfilled all the messianic expectations and what few he seems to fit could have easily been added to the Gospels to make him appear to be the Messiah. It's all just too easily faked and unoriginal to just accept on face value like you're asking people to.

        October 11, 2013 at 12:41 am |
        • MAX

          Jesus never claimed nothing about himself, bozo. He stated facts no one has ever refuted. U no that. U were told that. Yet, u come back disguised as someone else and repeat the same garbage.

          October 11, 2013 at 12:47 am |
        • Opposing View

          Jesus was not a myth. He was real. Dozens of demigods? Right. In your dreams. I think you've been reading too many science fiction books. But assuming for a moment that such demigods really existed, not one could do what Jesus Christ did. Not one. And if so, where is your evidence of it? I'd certainly like to see it. Without evidence, your claims don't mean a thing…

          As for the Jews, you can't go by what they say. It was God himself who put a spiritual blindfold over the eyes of the Jews so they wouldn't recognize Jesus as the Messiah. God did that. It was his will, and he had a purpose for doing it. Even today, the Jews still have that blindfold on and do not recognize Jesus as the Messiah. Nor does God want them to see it yet. But there is a day coming in the future when God is going to remove that spiritual blindfold and the Jews will finally recognize Jesus for who he really is and was…

          October 11, 2013 at 1:01 am |
        • Ben

          Max
          Jesus in the first three Gospels, incidently the first three in the Bible to be written, never claimed anything about himself, that's true, but Jesus in the Gospel of John, the last one written, is all about claiming stuff about himself. Line them up from earliest to latest and you can plainly see the evolution of the theology that Jesus must have been divine. They had to think up something to explain why he didn't come back as promised.

          October 11, 2013 at 1:03 am |
        • HotAirAce

          What actual evidence is there for anything the alleged desert dweller named jesus said or did?

          October 11, 2013 at 1:03 am |
        • Ben

          Opposing View
          Jesus likely was an actual figure, but what evidence is there that he was actually a demigod? Jesus and "the Christ" are two separate things that many people just happen to put together automatically, as though "Christ" was Jesus's last name. All you have are claims and theology, which are just words and wordplay. It's like hearing a Twilight fan arguing that Dracula isn't a "real" vampire, like Edward.

          October 11, 2013 at 1:33 am |
        • Jeff Williams

          """Jesus was not a myth. He was real. """

          Of *course* he was. You convinced me there, you random and anonymous person on that series of tubes known as the internets.

          October 11, 2013 at 11:32 am |
      • Paul

        Josephus. Look it up.

        October 11, 2013 at 12:53 am |
      • MAX

        The new testament, u lying, vile cancer

        October 11, 2013 at 12:53 am |
      • HotAirAce

        How many years elapsed between the alleged crucifixion of some dude named jesus and Josephsus' alleged report, and who did he interview?

        October 11, 2013 at 12:58 am |
      • HotAirAce

        Max, what evidence do you have to prove The Babble is accurate? You do know that the Smithsonian does not consider The Babble to be of historical use, don't you?

        October 11, 2013 at 1:00 am |
      • bajadelmar

        Then PROVE it right now genius. We're waiting....

        October 11, 2013 at 1:08 am |
        • MAX

          Done. Idiot. Where do they find these morons?

          October 11, 2013 at 6:05 am |
      • Ben

        Paul
        Josephus also talks about Hercules as though he were a real person, and don't forget that he claimed that his Emperor, Vespasian, was the actual Messiah of the Jews. That's your source writing about the son of another god, and a different Messiah. How much do you trust him now?

        October 11, 2013 at 1:37 am |
      • MAX

        What is a babble, u pig?

        October 11, 2013 at 6:03 am |
      • Jeff Williams

        Josephus? That's your proof? The only nonbiblical historical reference written by someone born after this jesus person died?

        Wrong answer.

        October 11, 2013 at 11:29 am |
  8. Deity #7245b

    I believe in magical pink unicorns that will show me the way to Heaven after I die.

    No one can take that away from me 🙂

    October 11, 2013 at 12:21 am |
    • Dave Green

      Nor would I want to! I hope your belief in pink unicorns fills you with joy and happiness. As long as your belief doesn't require demonizing anyone who doesn't believe as you do, I say more power to you!

      October 11, 2013 at 12:23 am |
      • ScottCA

        Fallacious beliefs do not remain self-contained, but taint the intellectual scene with ripples of distortion.
        Patronizing peoples absurd beliefs is always a damaging thing, that leads to decision based in illogical and insane beliefs.

        October 11, 2013 at 12:25 am |
        • Dave Green

          Who are you to tell anyone, how to apply meaning to their life? Not everything is objective and when it comes to how someone views reality and applies it to their life, I couldn't care less.

          You talk about tainting the intellectual scene with ripples of distortion, but I challenge you to make an argument that simply believing there is a god of some sort is detrimental to anything. It requires more than that to become a liability to human intellectual growth in general and I submit that whatever argument you come up with MUST go beyond a simple belief there is a god. Nothing patronizing about it.

          October 11, 2013 at 12:36 am |
        • Ben

          Racists have a distorted view on reality as well, but would you argue that we should leave them be without challenging their beliefs? Like it, or not, a lot of religious belief is just as harmful and backwards.

          October 11, 2013 at 12:46 am |
    • ScottCA

      LOL that was a good one.

      October 11, 2013 at 12:24 am |
  9. ScottCA

    The chance of god existing is the same as the tooth fairy being real.

    October 11, 2013 at 12:18 am |
    • Opposing View

      A billion other fools once thought the exact same thing. And they are all now in hell...

      October 11, 2013 at 12:24 am |
      • Get Real

        And your verified evidence for this residency is....?

        October 11, 2013 at 12:29 am |
      • Ben

        And maybe a billion dead Christians all got reincarnated into actual sheep, and not just metaphorical ones? Who knows? All are just as likely to be have happened if all we have to go on are bold claims.

        October 11, 2013 at 1:06 am |
  10. Reality # 2

    (only for the new visitors to this blog)

    Putting thumbs down 🙂 on all religion in less than ten seconds: Priceless !!!

    • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Abraham i.e. the foundations of Judaism, Christianity and Islam are non-existent.

    • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Moses i.e. the pillars of Judaism, Christianity and Islam have no strength of purpose.

    • There was no Gabriel i.e. Islam fails as a religion. Christianity partially fails.

    • There was no Easter i.e. Christianity completely fails as a religion.

    • There was no Moroni i.e. Mormonism is nothing more than a business cult.

    • Sacred/revered cows, monkey gods, castes, reincarnations and therefore Hinduism fails as a religion.

    • Fat Buddhas here, skinny Buddhas there, reincarnated/reborn Buddhas everywhere makes for a no on Buddhism.

    • A constant cycle of reincarnation until enlightenment is reached and belief that various beings (angels?, tinker bells? etc.) exist that we, as mortals, cannot comprehend makes for a no on Sikhism.

    Added details available upon written request.

    October 11, 2013 at 12:17 am |
    • Topher

      Blasphemer 🙂
      aw shucks, you mean death is death?

      bummer!

      October 11, 2013 at 12:18 am |
    • somethingstellar

      The one for Sikhism sounds a lot more like Buddhism than what you actually wrote about Buddhism lol.

      The skinny Buddha represents when be sat under the bodhi tree and refused food and got all sickly to find the key to end suffering. There's a couple of main fat Buddhas with one decked out to represent good fortune and another that's dancing for joy. And several variations of him meditating, or serene Buddha. There's places where the statues more or less told a story. Hon' was a real dude and he was not a god or demigod or child of a god (although he was a spoiled prince). And, depending on the branch of Buddhism, books will say that it can be taken as a devout religion or just a philosophy to adopt compatable with any other religion or without any at all. Plus they love their science. Monks will often participate in cat scans for studies on the effects of meditation on the brain.

      October 11, 2013 at 2:03 am |
  11. Gregg

    A good counter would be a billboard showing people from different faiths, such as a Christian, a Jew, a Muslim, a Buddhist, a native American, with the caption "They have as great a change of being right, as you do."

    October 11, 2013 at 12:07 am |
    • Gregg

      A good counter would be a billboard showing people from different faiths, such as a Christian, a Jew, a Muslim, a Buddhist, a native American, with the caption "They have as great a chance of being right, as you do."

      Damn typo

      October 11, 2013 at 12:08 am |
      • Dave Green

        hmmm..I don't know about chance or odds, but I would say it's a matter of process. To start with an answer and then seek questions to fit the answer to, seems backwards. It makes more sense to start with questions and seek answers to those questions and if you can't answer a question due to a lack of information, simply concede it and move on.

        The problem I have with the common theistic mindset is that they believe they have the answer and everything else is just filling in the blanks. I disagree with that system of reason. It's too easy to misapply observation and even personal experience to that which you have already presupposed.

        October 11, 2013 at 12:14 am |
    • Topher

      which is kind of "no chance" so stop guessing and making up junk that is obviously false? And lets just keep using science to try and understand the true nature of life, the Universe, and existence in general??

      OKAY. I'm in.

      October 11, 2013 at 12:15 am |
  12. Jim

    Quite unsettling to live in a country where the majority of people believe what they are told without question. No application of their own experiences or use of their own reason. Just the simple output of that which they are given. It's really quite sad.

    October 11, 2013 at 12:03 am |
    • Opposing View

      The majority of the people in hell felt the exact same way. And look where they ended up...

      Proverbs 28:26 – He that trusteth in his own heart is a fool:

      October 11, 2013 at 12:08 am |
      • Topher

        Bronze Age demi-god, get over it. Put your god in the fictional hell it belongs in, along with the other thousands of Human created deities that have no business being discussed in a rational manner!! 🙂

        October 11, 2013 at 12:17 am |
      • Jim

        So you believe your God gave you a brain superior to all other living species and capable of complex reasoning so that you could sit idly by and tie your entire life to a book?

        October 11, 2013 at 12:20 am |
      • Dave

        How would you know? Have you been to this "hell" recently? Who all is there and how many?

        October 11, 2013 at 12:20 am |
      • Get Real

        Opposing View,

        Then you can't trust your 'heart' to know that this "God's" words are "written upon it"...

        October 11, 2013 at 12:35 am |
    • devin

      " ... the majority of people believe what they are told without question..." I realize you thought that line sounded good and in some way would bolster your point, unfortunately it's simply not true.

      October 11, 2013 at 12:16 am |
      • Jim

        How so?

        October 11, 2013 at 12:22 am |
      • Dave

        Actually, when it comes to religious beliefs it's a very accurate assessment. I mean, really, how can it be proven what some collection of bronze aged stories and some guy up on a pulpit have to say?

        October 11, 2013 at 12:24 am |
      • devin

        The vast majority of christians, myself included, have considered extensively the validity and implications of our faith, both theologically and philosophically.

        October 11, 2013 at 12:37 am |
        • Observer

          devin,

          Yes. That is why Christians just pick-and-choose from the Bible and ignore what they don't like. That's why they might agree with putting gays down while possibly not agreeing with the Bible's support of slavery.

          October 11, 2013 at 12:41 am |
        • Dave

          Exactly. You simply believe what you are told. Faith is not something you can prove (or disprove) scientifically or tangibly. You take the word of someone else to interpret meanings of passages in your bible.

          October 11, 2013 at 12:44 am |
        • devin

          Dave

          " You simply believe what you are told" This statement in and of its self speaks volumes of your astounding lack of clarity on the matter.

          October 11, 2013 at 12:50 am |
        • devin

          Observer

          You confuse picking and choosing with that of understanding content in its historical grammatical context. I do admit, however, it is a very useful tool for the critic to willy nilly pluck out Old Testament passages that on the surface would appear useful to their argument.

          October 11, 2013 at 12:55 am |
        • Jim

          I commend you Devin. I really do. Though I'm not sure how you can speak for the "vast majority of Christians". But just to be clear, I have nothing against religion. After all, moral virtue is almost as commendable as virtue of the mind. It's just a bit unsettling when I read things like this and see so much ignorance. Of course there are some atheists who are equally to blame.

          October 11, 2013 at 12:55 am |
        • Dave

          Hardly a lack of clarity on the matter. I simply know what I see and hear from talking to various religious leaders in my community.

          October 11, 2013 at 12:59 am |
        • devin

          You are correct, let me clarify by stating "the vast majority of christians that I know personally". I was just assuming the circles I run in are indicative of the majority of chrisitans. Perhaps the main reason I took issue with your statement is because I realize how much of a cynic I am, and in turn, the mental gymnastics I've gone through in order to rationally understand my faith.

          October 11, 2013 at 1:04 am |
        • Jim

          I respect that. But perhaps those circles you've been running are a bit tight. A larger sample size might do you some good. Or maybe I've been running mine too tight. Either way, it's much easy to respect the views of another when they keep a cool open mind.

          October 11, 2013 at 1:18 am |
        • AE

          Faith is complete trust and confidence in something or someone (look it up). I put my faith in God, and He gave me evidence to believe more. It is amazing.

          October 11, 2013 at 1:18 am |
        • Ben

          devin
          I have heard of hard-core, former racists who cried at the thought that they could have died without realizing that they were wrong. I honestly do not believe that you have seriously considered the possibility that you are wrong now. Imagine, if you are, then any judgment you may have of non-believers, gays, Jews, and so on are just as unjustified as a racist's beliefs, and you would have brought a lot of pain into this world needlessly.

          Now, imagine that you are right. There is a God, but the only justification for all that pain is that it displeases this being. Personally, I would rather face the possible wrath of such a clear despot than have hated people for no other reason than to toady to and possibly save my butt from that same tyrant. I'm just not that selfish.

          October 11, 2013 at 1:25 am |
        • Ben

          AE
          I put my trust in real people.

          October 11, 2013 at 1:26 am |
        • AE

          Human power seems to fail. We are not perfect. We can come together and do great things, yes. And I definitely receive support from other people. But to get through many of the adversities and trials in life I depend on God. And that has not always been an easy thing to do. I'm new to turning my over life to God.

          October 11, 2013 at 1:31 am |
        • Jim

          Ben, you are absolutely right. But Devin never said he hated anyone. That's just your assumption.

          October 11, 2013 at 1:32 am |
        • devin

          Ben

          A couple of things: First, and I say this with all due respect, you could not be more wrong when you surmise that I haven't entertained the idea of being wrong. You'll just have to trust me on this one. Second, I don't know what God you are referring to, but he/she/it has nothing to do with the God of all creation found in the Bible.

          October 11, 2013 at 1:35 am |
        • Ben

          AE
          Real people may be flawed, but some of them do earn your trust.

          God may be imagined as a perfect being, but if he's the same as the Bible character, then I have to disagree with you. That character is a jealous, egotistical, murdering tyrant. Why would you trust such a character.

          October 11, 2013 at 8:02 am |
        • Ben

          Jim
          I see Christian bigotries as being the same as racial, gender, or other bigotries. The only difference is the excuse they give.

          October 11, 2013 at 8:03 am |
        • Ben

          devin
          But, do you continue to entertain the idea that you could be wrong? I do, in that I fully admit that all it would take to change my mind is some evidence. Most Christians that I know readily admit that their minds are made up, and that nothing will shake their faith in God. That, my friend, is the difference between open and closed-mindedness.

          Second, are you saying that the Bible God of Creation isn't the same Bible God who sent the flood, who slaughtered the Egyptian first born, ordered the slaughter of Canaanite peoples, and other atrocities?

          October 11, 2013 at 8:15 am |
      • devin

        Jim

        I would agree.

        October 11, 2013 at 1:38 am |
  13. Wootings

    "In June 2012, Gallup's latest findings showed that 46% of Americans believed in creationism, 32% believed in evolution guided by God, and 15% believed in atheistic evolution.

    For as long as Gallup has conducted the survey, creationism has remained far and away the most popular answer, with 40% to 47% of Americans surveyed saying they believed that God created humans in their present form at one point within the past 10,000 years.

    The Creation Museum said it recently welcomed its 2 millionth visitor since its opening in 2007."

    Proof positive that, as a whole, Americans are the stupidest collection of not-very-evolved primates on the face of the planet.

    October 11, 2013 at 12:02 am |
    • Deity #7245b

      Amen.
      Word.
      Yo.
      K.

      October 11, 2013 at 12:19 am |
    • tallulah13

      And not 50 year ago this country was sending men to the moon...

      Is there anything more destructive or counterproductive on this planet than religion? Christian fear-mongering and superstItion-driven ignorance will destroy this country faster than any terrorist group.

      October 11, 2013 at 12:28 am |
      • MAX

        That's y they read from genesis as they approached the moon! Terrible! Go to hell satan

        October 11, 2013 at 1:00 am |
        • Ben

          I can remember when NORAD use to "track" Santa on New Year's Eve. Government/military types do like to play along for the sake of the children, don't they?

          October 11, 2013 at 1:12 am |
  14. MichiganChet

    As a thoughtful atheist I will only point out that one of the insuperable barriers to belief, at least for me, is having to share space with people like Ham, who come across as raving, anti-science loonies. I mean, even the Catholic Church accepts evolution

    October 10, 2013 at 11:57 pm |
    • Deity #7245b

      um, no it doesn't, not in any real or rational sense. They still have a DEITY Man!!

      October 11, 2013 at 12:20 am |
    • MAX

      If u became a christian, we'd have to share Christ with u. Don't believe. Stay where u r. Thanks

      October 11, 2013 at 12:58 am |
      • Arthur Bryant

        Given what "Jesus" preached, I'd say most of you so-called Christians posting on this board should be more properly called Judasians. Such hateful rhetoric. Or perhaps that's the true face of your terrifying religion.

        October 11, 2013 at 5:40 pm |
  15. biglio

    I call that: "How to make a fool of yourself".....(regardless of if you are a believer or not).......

    October 10, 2013 at 11:47 pm |
  16. Trucker

    How do you prove an immaterial reality using material measurements. Since science only measures matter interacting with other matter, it may not be the best way to "prove" the existence of a human soul. Yet, science is not even the most fundamental form of knowledge. It presupposes apprehension, judgment and logic. For a human to have a soul it must have something immaterial in it. I have a "will" and an "intellect."Is a human person simply a material being? Is there nothing immaterial about us? I have a "will." I can move my body and objects if I choose to OR if I choose not to. I have a "intellect" and can reason with logic about great ideas. I can create music that has never existed before. Words convey meaning and I am moved by great speeches such as Martin Luther Jr.'s "I have a dream." If I analyze the chemical makeup of the paints and canvas used to create the Mona Lisa but have not seen it, have I understood it truly. If I know the light frequency of a color, but am blind, do I truly know the color? No, I know one aspect of the truth of color, it’s not the full truth, it’s a partial truth. If I know the sound frequency of every note used in a symphony, but am deaf, have I truly captured what a symphony is? Science only measures material objects interacting with other material objects. Science is simply one method to obtain knowledge but will never answer all things.

    October 10, 2013 at 11:46 pm |
    • ooo

      I notice a lot of believers seem to think like this. I really think our brains are wired a little differently.

      October 10, 2013 at 11:50 pm |
    • tallulah13

      I am not an atheist because of science, but because of history. Literally thousands of gods have been worshiped throughout history. All gods reflect the morals and habits of the civilizations that created them. No god ever appeared simultaneously in unrelated areas, and no god ever traveled where humans didn't take him. The christian god took 1500 years to cross the ocean to the Americas. Fifteen hundred years. He didn't get there until humans built sea-worthy boats and created navigational systems. Why do you suppose that is?

      How could the christian god create the universe when countless gods, including the hindu pantheon, are older than him? The historic record is very clear about that. There isn't a single contemporary non-biblical account of the existence of Christ. There isn't a single shred of evidence that any of the miracles in the bible took place, and even that judeo-christian staple, the Exodus from Egypt, is not supported by the historic record. There wasn't a significant or even above average population of jews in Egypt. There was no need for Moses and his plagues.

      Most gods have very human aspects - physically, behaviorally or both. Humans were "created in god's image" according to the bible. Why do you suppose that is? As far as I can tell, gods are humanity's way of putting a familiar face on the unknown in order to bargain with it and hopefully control it.

      I don't need science to tell me that gods aren't real. Science merely confirms what history says: God(s) didn't invent humans. Humans invented god(s).

      October 11, 2013 at 12:18 am |
      • somethingstellar

        Brainwashing mostly.

        Watch Jesus Camp for a disturbing romp.

        October 11, 2013 at 2:29 am |
    • Ben

      Tucker
      Can you name any "immaterial realities" that we have evidence of being real beyond human imagination? You are making the logical mistake of assuming that the soul is real first and then blaming science for not being able to prove it. Maybe you should let the evidence lead you to the answers rather than your answers leading you to your evidence?

      Sure, science cannot answer all things, but we have poetry, art, philosophy, religion, sport, music, and a host of other fields to help us express what we "feel" about the real, physical world. Still, the flower of a painting is not the same as a "real" flower, is it? A song about the storm isn't the same as the real thing either, and a religious creation story isn't the same thing as the actual explanation of how the universe began either, now is it? It's poetry, it teaches why Jews keep the Sabbath, how sin and hardship entered the world, and why women should never be consulted in important matters, but it does not teach the actual origins of the universe. Only science does that, and it's still finding the answer.

      October 11, 2013 at 12:33 am |
  17. Mac

    Ham should have taken the money for the billboard and fed a couple hundred starving children or seniors instead here in the US.

    October 10, 2013 at 11:45 pm |
    • devin

      As a conservative Christian, I agree wholeheartedly.

      October 11, 2013 at 12:12 am |
    • Opposing View

      That's nothing. Atheists have put up hundreds of billboards. So just think of all the hungry mouths they could feed if atheists used the money they spend on billboards helping out the poor...

      October 11, 2013 at 12:21 am |
      • HotAirAce

        Feeding the hungry is a short term strategy. Educating people so they can throw off 2,000 year old myths and get out of their religious cults is a long term strategy. Both need to be done.

        October 11, 2013 at 12:53 am |
  18. silentcount

    Evolved from what? Where did the particles come from? Perhaps the dimension that contains physical matter is foreign, and the core of existence is based on another dimension. It's actually the most logical explanation of how something came from nothing. If you have a cartoon image in your head of a mythical character sitting on a cloud, then perhaps you need to rethink every possibility of what God is.... and the links we have to that original and final dimension.

    October 10, 2013 at 11:44 pm |
    • Topher

      ...or not to try so hard to understand a question that will likely haunt Humans for eons to come, rather than offer you a simply explanation of forces beyond your comprehension in 2013 🙂

      October 10, 2013 at 11:46 pm |
    • Antronman

      In the end, even when you say BIG BANG...you have to ask. "Where is that energy from?" I say it is god. Aethiests say it has yet to be discovered.

      October 10, 2013 at 11:46 pm |
      • vonn

        Was nothing.. Faith was the something that made everything to be.. But this is foolish to the human mind because the mind only believes what it can see.. Walk by Faith not by sight..

        October 11, 2013 at 12:20 am |
    • ooo

      Yes, but lets not expand the definition of god to cover these possibilities.

      October 10, 2013 at 11:47 pm |
  19. Antronman

    I love how all of these aethiests posting say that neither of us can prove/disprove each others theorys, and then rant about how god is fake. Door-to-door christian boys do not represent the face of religion. Nor do the priests. Keep that in mind.

    October 10, 2013 at 11:43 pm |
    • Mac

      Learn how to spell, then pick up a history book.

      October 10, 2013 at 11:46 pm |
    • Topher

      um...no child, you missed the point. They are pointing out to you that;

      A. YOU are atheist to every other god created by Man (23,457 gods in our 200,000 years or so?)
      B. your notion of a God is laughable at best.

      October 10, 2013 at 11:51 pm |
  20. Steve

    I'm an atheist and I can say the church goers I've met in my life do not inspire me. At all.

    October 10, 2013 at 11:41 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.