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October 15th, 2010
09:03 PM ET

Texas Billboard: Christians are 'jerks'

More from Gabe Lyons here.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Church

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soundoff (223 Responses)
  1. Laura

    I am sorry CatholicMom.
    do you read anything out of your bible or do you just accept the "magesterium of the Catholic Church? Have you read the history of the RRC?
    I want to know and read what the bible tells me, not what Catholic magesteriums, cathecisms and councils have come up with BASED on the bible and thier "authority" to dictate the passages as they see fit too. One is just to accept what a group of men have decided?Should we not go directly to the word of God ourselves? Bible has been mistranslated and stuff taken away and added to, by men in the Catholic Chruch, as well as other sects.
    Yes, I believe in the universal church that Jesus found, but I do not believe it was Peter that Jesus built his church on. Sorry. Never have never will.
    Peter himself testifies to it very clearly in Scripture: Jesus is the ROCK on which He will build His Church:

    1 Pet 2:3 If so be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious. 4 To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious, 5 Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sac-rifices, acceptable to God by Jesus C-h-r-i-s-t. 6 Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded. 7 Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner, 8 And a stone of stumbling, and a ROCK OF OFFENCE, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were app-ointed. 9 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: 10 Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.

    Was Peter preaching at himself? Here the phrase ROCK of offence refers to Jesus alone

    •Isaiah 44:8, "Is there any God besides Me, or is there any other Rock? I know of none."

    C-h-r-i-s-t meant that the Church would be built upon Himself, meaning that C-h-ri-s-t is the Head of the Church (cf. Colossians 1:1 Corinthians 3:11 says, "For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus C-h-r-i-st."
    18), and that the gates of H-e-ll- would not prevail against it.

    The "primacy of Peter" doctrine asserts that Jesus gave Peter, and Peter’s s-u-ccessors, authority to function as the sole custodians of true Ch-ri-stian teaching—and as Pope Bened-ict asserted, "This primacy is for all time" (ibid.). Supporters of this doctrine point to one key passage of scripture, in which Jesus said, "you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church… I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven" (Matthew 16:18–19). A careful study of this passage and other scriptures, however, reveals something very different from what Benedi-ct has in mind. In the original Greek text, Jesus’ statement is actually a play on words. The Greek word for "Peter" is petros (meaning a small stone), and the Greek word for "rock" is petra (a huge rock or mountain). The Bible clearly shows that Jesus C-h-r-is-t is the Rock (see 1 Corinthians 10:4; 1 Peter 2:4; see also Psalm 118:22; Isaiah 28:16). He was referring to Himself as the petra, and to His disciple Peter as the petros.

    Scripture also shows that the Church was not founded on Peter alone, but was "built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus C–h-ri-s-t Himself being the chief cornerstone" (Ephesians 2:20). Jesus described His petros—Peter—as a foundation stone of the Church, along with the other apostles and prophets. However, Jesus C-h-r-is-t and His teachings would remain the true foundation of the Church. This is the true meaning of Matthew 16:18–19. Attempts to twist this verse into a statement of Peter’s exclusive authority are simply not biblical. This is why the Roman claim for power based on Peter’s supposed primacy has never been accepted by the Eastern Orthodox churches, and why it was rejected by the Protestant reformers (see Civilization Past & Present, Wallbank, p. 133).

    I am having to post this in parts

    October 18, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  2. Laura

    David Johnson

    @Raison

    It is done. I will reply to Laura, no more. This is because you asked.

    Happy Trails!

    As you wish David. I never force conversation where it is not wanted. Therefore, I will not try and re-edit my moderated post I originally did to respond back to you. No sense it wasting your time or mine.

    I did note some sarcasm in your postings back to me, but I still tried to just deal with your comments and not get into a blogboard argument. Its a waste of time, and not on my agenda.
    I will just wish you a good day, and be on my way. 🙂

    October 18, 2010 at 3:52 pm |
  3. Frogist

    Thank goodness someone said it! And thank goodness it was a church. Because if it was an atheist group or another religion, we'd be knee-deep in christian outrage. But it is honestly the truth. And a truth that most christians are not willing to acknowledge. Having been beset by loud, arrogant, prideful and sometimes downright nasty individuals who call themselves christian, I am glad someone finally said it. Yes, christians are jerks. Of all the religious people in the world, I have never been treated as poorly as a human being by a person of another religion than I have by christians. Not by muslims, hindus, buddhists ... no one is as self-righteous as a christian with a message. Except maybe for some atheists on this board who will remain anonymous... 😉 I am so glad that this church said it. And I am so glad that this church gets why christians are met with such ferocious disdain from society at large. Because it is blatantly obvious that the majority of christians do not understand that their behaviour is not helping them spread their message of peace and love. If we are going to coexist in harmony, we all need to be, at the very least, tolerant of each other. And that's really hard to do with christians constantly in your face telling you you're wrong. Kudos to this group! And I hope others follow your lead.

    October 18, 2010 at 9:37 am |
    • Raison

      @Frogist
      Sorry, Frogist. Point taken. If I could go back and edit my earlier post(s), I would. In fact, you'd see an amazing amount of nasty posts mysteriously disappear in the process, but, alas! Such things are not available to people like me.
      You are a nice person to have withheld your blow when you would have been justified in giving me a good whack upside the head – but now I'm getting a bit wordy and if I don't stop this is likely to go halfway down the page. ...
      Pax? Peace? Mea culpa? Thoughts? etc? 😛

      October 18, 2010 at 10:09 am |
    • NL

      I would agree that the world would be a much better place once everybody becomes satisfied with simply letting their ideas 'rub off' on others as opposed to harshly scrubbing away at everyone else's beliefs and then painting your own on coat after tedious coat.

      October 18, 2010 at 10:26 am |
    • David Johnson

      @Frogist

      You said, "Having been beset by loud, arrogant, prideful and sometimes downright nasty individuals who call themselves christian, I am glad someone finally said it. Yes, christians are jerks. Of all the religious people in the world, I have never been treated as poorly as a human being by a person of another religion than I have by christians. Not by muslims, hindus, buddhists ... no one is as self-righteous as a christian with a message."

      The Evangelicals are a boisterous lot. But I have heard of Muslims killing non-Muslims in other countries. Probably an "in your face Christian" is preferable.

      I love the Fundies with a message. That and several brews, make for a decent time. Sunday mornings are totally boring until the fundies get out of church. A day without fundies is like a day without sunshine.

      You said, "Except maybe for some atheists on this board who will remain anonymous..."

      Hmm... No need for me to be anonymous. I enjoy pointing out silly beliefs. I don't apologize to anyone for that. Will keep doing it until November.

      October 18, 2010 at 1:24 pm |
    • NL

      David-
      I too reserve the right to challenge any belief. Believers, in fact, really ought to question what it says about their faith to have such strong taboos in place shielding their ideas from scrutiny. It really only gives the impression that religious beliefs are so groundless that the slightest challenge would cause them to fall. Confident believers with great faith would not be afraid to hear criticism, right?

      October 18, 2010 at 2:06 pm |
    • Raison

      @NL
      Another good point. I, too, reserve the right to challenge whatever...so...

      @David Johnson
      I happened to notice that you acted as though I had asked you to stop, when I only asked you to ease up a bit on Laura.
      Do not stop doing what you do!
      I just wanted to make sure you weren't overdoing it. Go ahead and respond to her posts, I release you. 😛
      I'm sorry I didn't see that before....I seriously need some vacation stuff to happen, but its a "stay-cation" for me.
      NL is right, as usual. Fundies need correcting. No matter who they are. Laura can be nice, but that doesn't mean she's right.
      Sorry.

      October 18, 2010 at 2:39 pm |
    • Frogist

      Sorry about the late responses... sometimes I just move forward with the posts and not come back to respond... Totally my bad.
      @Raison: Not sure what you're referencing about nasty posts. But I know people have strong opinions and we're all not always going to agree. As long as people are civil to each other, I don't much mind having the tough discussions sometimes.
      @NL: Absolutely agree. I can't stand being the canvas for someone doing a paint by numbers kit with a roller. Sorry I think that analogy went of the rails somewhere... LOL!
      @David: Yes, there are muslims killing muslims and non-muslims alike in other countries. But so are christians and hindus. It just depends on what country you're in. We'd be hard pressed to find any religion that doesn't have blood on it's hands. But my personal experience is that of the many religious people I've met, christians have been the absolute worst when it comes to being welcoming or tolerant or even kind. The muslims I've met have been far far nicer people. Yes, that is just a matter of my circu-mstances, but it is an experience that this church and many others recognise in their billboard.
      No apology required! I totally can see how you would like those people who put the "fun" in fundie. I'm not quite as amused by them unfortunately. I think it takes your talents to really be able to appreciate them! But I'm glad you're here to toy with them even if we don't have the same approach. It does provide many hours of entertainment. Even if it's a lot like watching them being thrown to the lions! LOL!

      October 21, 2010 at 9:05 am |
  4. Laura

    @DavidJohnson
    I forgot to tell you to Have a Great Day! Sorry, I am in a hurry right now. 🙂

    October 18, 2010 at 8:17 am |
  5. Laura

    @David Johnson
    I posted back to you, but it moderated. I do not have time to go thru it now, as I have to go to work. This evening, I will repost back to your comments.

    October 18, 2010 at 8:15 am |
  6. Laura

    @Iceman
    I agree with you 100%! Later I will post back to David Johnson, and address that part of his post to me about the Catholic Church as well. Have to go to work right now, Have a Great Day! 🙂

    October 18, 2010 at 8:13 am |
  7. Laura

    Thank you Raison, I appreciate your support of me. That coming from one good and honest heart such as yours, makes my day! Much love and peace to you! 🙂

    I have some things to address back to David Johnson this evening. I have not the time right now, must get ready for work.

    October 18, 2010 at 8:11 am |
  8. Livelystone

    I love Jesus Christ with all my heart but the church today is no different than the religious right of Jesus time. But personally I have the found the church to full of hypocrites liars and thieves and the church is not a place where God frequents. It is not a matter of judging anymore any different than the Apostles said to separate yourselves from those who were contrary to God

    When there was a real church like when the Apostles were at the helm signs and wonders identified the church as God's people just like Israel was identified by signs and wonders. Signs and wonders come from God and when you do not see them it is because God is not at work there.... when is the last time you saw someone really healed and the dead raised in a modern day western church? Yes you see healings from new ministries in places where the gospel is being preached for the first time and the first temple was a prophecy of that at it dedications but like the church it ended in ruin and its members taken captive

    When the truth of the scriptures returns to the church then we will see a church in the image of the first century church given evidence by many miracles...... until then they fulfill the words of Jesus that called them the synagogue of Satan.

    If one wants to get close to God then go to Him. Those that search for Him with all their hearts will find Him ........ but dont go looking for Him at a church because He is not there

    October 18, 2010 at 6:53 am |
    • David Johnson

      @Livelystone

      You said, "When there was a real church like when the Apostles were at the helm signs and wonders identified the church as God's people just like Israel was identified by signs and wonders. Signs and wonders come from God and when you do not see them it is because God is not at work there...."

      Consider, that no more miracles occurred in the time of Jesus and his apostles than now. Just because miracles were reported, doesn't mean they actually happened. Remember the New Testament was written with the express purpose of "proving" Jesus was the Messiah. Miracles are always a crowd pleaser.

      There are NO known contemporary references to Jesus–meaning there are no known references to him that date during his lifetime.

      Actually, most of Jesus's miracles were sort of cheesy, compared to what you would expect from a god. Instead of a few people being cured of a disease, why didn't Jesus wipe out an entire disease? Poof! No more leprosy! Poof! No more cancer.

      You said, "when is the last time you saw someone really healed and the dead raised in a modern day western church?"

      Well, benny Hinn and Richard Roberts and Peter Popov do it on an almost nightly basis. Maybe not the dead part. Hinn once claimed he was going to raise a dead person in TV land, but I believe it failed.

      Healings are easily faked and misunderstood by the faithful. There are many reasons for this. Won't go into them here.

      Bottom line, is that just as many miracles occur today as in Jesus's day. The total amount in both times is zero.

      You said, "Yes you see healings from new ministries in places where the gospel is being preached for the first time and the first temple was a prophecy of that at it dedications but like the church it ended in ruin and its members taken captive"

      Are you referring to the temple destroyed in 70 CE? That is now the Mosque of Omar. It is Muslim.

      There are no miracles in new churchs. When you see a lady being sawed in half, it is always a trick. Never a miracle.

      Happy Trails Pardner!

      October 18, 2010 at 10:29 am |
    • CatholicMom

      Livelystone,

      Have faith, hope and charity….what kinds of signs and wonders do you need?

      October 18, 2010 at 1:52 pm |
  9. ICEMAN

    @ Raison yea one thing they couldn't do is cover up their history, they did their best but i love the ones who was getting killed, tortured, mislabeled, banished, ra–ped, and to me most important scripted of their belief, culture, gods, history, legacy, etc........cause they were the ones who died for what they believed in , they pasted there stories down, hide their books, worshipped secretly. Not only did the RCC bring this evil they past it on to the PROTESTANTS, after surviving the attempt to wipe them off the face of the earth lol what did they do? ONLY come to the america's and try to wipe the Natives out and inslave millions of blacks claiming THAT IT'S JUSTIFIED IN THE BIBLE. As a Christian i know why the world doesn't like us, it's because we have tortured, catagorize, inslaved "not only physical but spirtually", the people of this world. Now many other had their hand in this as well BUT as i'm a christian, slowly turning from that since it's a Roman word, Yeshua's movement was called "the way". I can go on and on about how our faith has basically tried to make this world thier world, (NWO) but what they don't know and will find that ALMOST everything goes back to africa, let me stop i got to get ready to get off and make relief. HOLLA!!!!!!!!!! ONE MORE THING AND I'M GOING TO STREAM IT EVERYTIME I GET A CHANCE, STILL CAN'T BELIEVE THE ONE THEY SO PROUD OF , THEIR SAVIOR, THEIR GOD, THEY CHANGED HIS COLOUR, LIKE WE WASN'T GOING TO FIND OUT!!!!!!!! NOW HOLLA!!!!!!

    October 18, 2010 at 6:04 am |
    • Raison

      @ICEMAN

      HOLLA BACK! 😀 ...and have a good one!

      October 18, 2010 at 6:38 am |
    • CatholicMom

      ICEMAN,

      Why do you call yourself a Christian, or did I misread your posts?....

      You appear to have some reason to not believe the Bible…saying the Catholic Church isn’t the Church that Jesus Christ started….do you not believe in Jesus Christ or His Words?

      Yes, there were heresies back in Jesus’ day as there are today…that does not mean that those ‘beliefs or systems of belief’ were the True Church…or are you suggesting that the promises of Jesus Christ that ‘He will build His Church on the person of Peter [not on Peter’s words], that evil will not prevail against His Church, that He would be with His Church always, that His Church will last until the end of time, and so on, are not true…making Jesus Christ a liar?

      And you seem to have sympathy for Protestants because they went off and used their freewill as they so chose….how can you blame the Catholic Church? The Church does not say you cannot use your freewill, it can only show you your error and then you have to use your freewill to continue on ‘your path’ or choose to return to the Way that Jesus Christ laid down for us for our help and benefit.

      Some say they hate their freewill because they have to make decisions. They would prefer that they were robots, I guess. But we could never choose LOVE if we were robotic and programmed without freewill.

      October 18, 2010 at 1:49 pm |
  10. ICEMAN

    I'M just going to put this out there since i guess people just read what they want to here, for the record, THE CATHOLIC CHURCH WASN'T THE FIRST CHURCH, first there were many kinds of christians like we have today. 313ad Constantine signed the edict of milan basically pulling state and church together. And this church was the Rcc, this don't mean it was the first or the one that was right but it was the biggest and most powerful one. Anyone opposing them would get cut down to size " not christlike to me"

    October 18, 2010 at 1:21 am |
    • Raison

      @ICEMAN

      Hi ICEMAN, a good post! You remind the rest of us what is often forgotten when evaluating the claims of the Catholic Church.
      😀

      October 18, 2010 at 2:43 am |
    • David Johnson

      @ICEMAN

      Dude! The King James clearly tells how Jesus gave Peter the keys to the church and told him, whatever would be allowed on earth would be allowed in heaven etc. There are some who dispute that this actually happened, but my King James is inerrant. Would God/Jesus allow a lie to be incorporated in my "Jimmy"?

      This has always miffed the Protestants, since they cannot show Apostolic succession. Yes, I know they perform theological gymnastics to overcome this grave defect in the protestant religions. But I go with my King Jimmy.

      Happy Trails!

      October 18, 2010 at 9:58 am |
  11. ICEMAN

    @ David i'm sure Yeshua was talking about the statement Peter said, but if you were to ever become a christian out of the million kinds we seem to have i can perrty much put you as being a Catholic. @ nobody but People as a whole are jerks, we can't get along and that isn't just a spiritual thing. It's the person and the way each of us looks at another. We have so much hatred and most of the time it's because we hate our life,

    October 18, 2010 at 12:55 am |
    • David Johnson

      @ICEMAN

      You said, "It's the person and the way each of us looks at another. We have so much hatred and most of the time it's because we hate our life"

      Or sometimes, it is because we love our life and do not want the religious fanatics to take it away. Sometimes we want to progress and give gays their rights. We want women to have the right to choose. We want prayer and creationism kept out of our schools. We want Social Security and Medicare to continue. We want children's health care to stay. We want food stamps and out of work insurance to be given, to those in need.

      No, it is not always because people hate their lives.

      October 18, 2010 at 1:34 pm |
  12. Matt in Oregon

    As an atheist I disagree with this billboard. The truth claims of a given faith are what I care about, not the behavior of the religions adherents. To me the fact that some followers of a given religion are impolite is immaterial. I have met just as many people from religious and unreligious points of view that are deeply decent people. Christianity makes a number of truth claims about the nature of reality that are simply not backed up by any tangible evidence.

    October 17, 2010 at 8:43 pm |
    • NL

      Matt, If you take the old saying "If first you don't succeed, try and try again" to heart, then you have to know when to quit trying before frustration takes over. As rational thinkers we atheists place a far higher value on facts than others do and, just as you cannot hope to convince everyone to quit smoking based on the facts about how harmful it is to their health, you will never convince all believers that their faith is irrational. Besides, it's not our job to convert people to atheism. We aren't in the same business of racking up souls for eternity for obvious reasons, so all we can hope for is greater tolerance, and with that I believe more people will feel comfortable enough to let go of the God belief for themselves, right?

      October 18, 2010 at 1:12 pm |
  13. Laura

    David Johnson

    @Laura

    You said, "It was hard enuff even attending church, having left the original church of my childhood, which was Catholic. I had conflicts with thier teachings, when I was able to understand (as I got older), that alot of the CC stuff was in conflict with what I read in the bible."

    I certainly am not a fan of the Catholic Church. But, do you think you might find it hard to accept any religious doctrine, or opinion, that conflicts with your own? The Catholic Church is the original, Peter has the keys, Christian Church. If you follow this to its logical conclusion, you could obey the Church and find salvation. If I believed in a god, I would probably be a Catholic.

    David, That is a ridicolous thing to say, after all I have explained to you. It is not about me being "picky" Yes, I am sure I will find one. But the thing I am trying to stress is, I am saved, I will obey the church IF IT IS in line with the teachings of Ch-r-i-s-t. That is NOT the problem, the PROBLEM is the PEOPLE that make up the church. I am not staying in a church that would slam a door in your face just because you are an atheist or if someone is a G-a=y person, because they thing they are better then you are. I don't know how much plainer I can put it.
    I do not agree that Peter is the rock that Jesus founded his church on...JESUS was the Rock! Peter was also married. I do not believe in alot the Catholic church does. But, I am not here to debate the Catholic Church. I have read thru comments on here, how Catholics believe and have seen most of the arguments against it. I have aw the arguments for it as well. I am not going to chase the carrot on that, as its old.
    I find it hard that you would be a Catholic based on some comments I saw you make when debating with Catholic Mom and others about the RCC. But, if you say so, hwo am I to question?
    Have a nice day! I am off to do some baking.

    October 17, 2010 at 8:26 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Laura

      You said, "I will obey the church IF IT IS in line with the teachings of Ch-r-i-s-t. That is NOT the problem, the PROBLEM is the PEOPLE that make up the church. "

      The problem, is that you are deciding if the Church's teachings are in line with with the teachings of Christ.

      Hmmm... Maybe pride is keeping you from humbling yourself before god, and His church. Pride is one of the 7 deadly sins Laura. I would hate to see you miss out on a glorious eternity with Jesus because you were too proud to obey.

      Laura the bible, even the King James, says Jesus told Peter he was the rock upon whom he would build His house. That is very plain, Laura. You are in error, and may be in danger of hell fire.

      "You are Peter, and on this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it" (Matt. 16:18)

      I will pray for you Laura.

      October 17, 2010 at 9:16 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Laura

      I also lit a candle for you, but it keeps going out. Sorry.

      October 17, 2010 at 9:21 pm |
    • Raison

      @David Johnson

      David...could you ease off on Laura? After having so much fun with my own stalker, I'd hate to see you guys in a similar situation....pleeeze?
      You make good arguments, but you seem a bit extra-crispy when responding to Laura's posts. I have probably done the same, but am too chicken to go back and look. She did me a favor the other day, and I'm just trying to return it. k?
      But of course you are free to do whatever. This is America. Hell is for other people. lol.. 😛

      October 18, 2010 at 2:32 am |
    • David Johnson

      @Raison

      It is done. I will reply to Laura, no more. This is because you asked.

      Happy Trails!

      October 18, 2010 at 9:42 am |
    • Raison

      @David Johnson
      Thanks, bro! I couldn't have done it without you...lol. Cheers! 😀

      October 18, 2010 at 10:13 am |
  14. Chuck The Canuck

    That billboard should read, "Christians are delusional jerks". Those of us capable of rational thought have been giving the bible addled way too much respect for far too long.

    October 17, 2010 at 7:45 pm |
  15. Muneef

     

    Once upon a time there was a girl who had 4 boyfriends.
     
    She loved the 4th boyfriend the most and adore him
    with rich robes and treated him to the finest of
    delicacies. She gave him nothing but the best.
     
    She also loved the 3rd boyfriend very much and was
    always showing him off to neighboring kingdoms.
    However, she feared that one day he would leave her
    for another.
     
    She also loved her 2nd boyfriend. He was her confidant
    and was always kind, considerate and patient with her.
    Whenever this girl faced a problem, she could confide
    in him, and he would help her get through the
    difficult times.
     
    The girls 1st boyfriend was a very loyal partner and
    had made great contributions in maintaining her wealth
    and kingdom. However, she did not love the first
    boyfriend. Although he loved her deeply, she hardly
    took notice of him.
     
    One day, the girl fell ill and she knew her time was
    short. She thought of her luxurious life and wondered,
    I now have four boyfriends with me, but when I die,
    I'll be all alone.'
     
    Thus, she asked the 4th boyfriend, I loved you the
    most, endowed you with the finest clothing and
    showered great care over you. Now that I'm dying, will
    you follow me and keep me company?'
     
    'No way!', replied the 4th boyfriend, and he walked
    away without another word.
     
    His answer cut like a sharp knife right into her
    heart.
     
    The sad girl then asked the 3rd boyfriend, 'I loved
    you all my life. Now that I'm dying, will you follow
    me and keep me company?'
     
    'No!', replied the 3rd boyfriend. 'Life is too good!
    When you die, I'm going to marry someone else!'
     
    Her heart sank and turned cold.
     
    She then asked the 2nd boyfriend, 'I have always
    turned to you for help and you've always been there
    for me.
     
    When I die, will you follow me and keep me company?'
     
    'I'm sorry, I can't help you out this time!', replied
    the 2nd boyfriend. 'At the very most, I can only walk
    with you to your grave.'
     
    His answer struck her like a bolt of lightning, and
    the girl was devastated.
     
    Then a voice called out: 'I'll go with you. I'll
    follow you no matter where you go.'
     
    The girl looked up, and there was her first boyfriend.
    He was very skinny as he suffered from malnutrition
    and neglect.
     
    Greatly grieved, the girl said, 'I should have taken
    much better care of you when I had the chance!'
     
    In truth, you have 4 boyfriends in your lives:
     
    Your 4th boyfriend is your body. No matter how much
    time and effort you lavish in making it look good, it
    will leave you when you die.
     
    Your 3rd boyfriend is your possessions, status and
    wealth. When you die, it will all go to others.
     
    Your 2nd boyfriend is your family and friends. No
    matter how much they have been there for you, the
    furthest they can stay by you is up to the grave.
     
    And your 1st boyfriend is your Soul. Often neglected
    in pursuit of wealth, power and pleasures of the
    world. However, your Soul is the only thing that will follow
    you where ever you go. Cultivate, strengthen and
    cherish it now, for it is the only part of you that
    will follow you to the throne of God and continue with
    you throughout Eternity.
     
    Thought for the day: Remember, when the world pushes
    you to your knees, you're in the perfect position to
    pray.
     
    Pass this on to someone you care about – I just did.
     
    Being happy doesn't mean everything's perfect. It
    means you've decided to see beyond the imperfections .
    I hope this would've touched you!

    October 17, 2010 at 2:28 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      Thank you for the good story!

      October 17, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
    • Raison

      @Muneef

      I skipped down to the bottom after struggling with the structure of your story.
      I think you should just spell out the "boyfriends" and leave it at that. It would make your points much more clear.
      Those are good points to make. They call for rational approaches to what life can bring.
      Something I like to see more of in people, but confusion can obscure any attempts at dealing with things in a rational manner, and I view religion as a source of confusion and point to all of us posting as proof of that. 😛

      October 17, 2010 at 9:14 pm |
    • Muneef

      @CatholicMum.
      @Raison.
      Thank you for your complements,have received this by mail today so I just copied it and pasted it here with outvany changes. Since it is true we are taking nothing with us after life but our souls which we have to invest in purifying andcontroling since it is alone who can take you to Paradise or to Hell depending who is in control.

      October 17, 2010 at 9:32 pm |
  16. Muneef

    We say your Hand palm fingers are not the same in lenght and that there is a Toilet in every house, which would mean that there are Jerks in every nation at every post of responsibility.

    October 17, 2010 at 11:14 am |
  17. Lynn

    David, you are so right about everything you say. Science is perfect. I grew up in a small town where going to church was a great big gossip day. The pastor got thrown out of the church for having an affair. Ladies ridiculed those who wore white shoes after Labor Day. It was crazy and ridiculus. I agree in full that Christians can be jerks. But then I became a Christain and I still believe Christian's can be jerks, just like democrats, repbulicans, athesists and white people, and cops can be jerks. I never became a Christian because I looked on at other Christians and thought, "Oh, I'd like to be like them". So for whatever it's worth to you, and I'm sure it's worth a good laugh at the least, my only regret in life is that I didn't believe in God earlier. My life has been infinitely better after I believed than before. And I'd rather be me and wrong than you and right. In the end, it will be revealed to all of us. But please, believe in what you believe in. Even though I am a jerk many times, I don't believe that I will debate this with you all day. I really beleive God gave us all the right to choose, He gave us the abiliity to stand up and speak for Him, and He gave us all the opportunity to be jerks. He gave us gifts as scientist, debaters, and just plain ordinary people like myself. I'm grateful for my hope and there is nothing anyone else can say to take it away from me. That is faith, not some logical, scientific explanation or anything else. I just plain believe. It's that simple. And I don't have time to worry about the jerks or sinners, because I'm too busy worrying about my "jerk" self most of the time. Thank you God, for forgiving me when I am a jerk and I hope I will be a better representative for you one day and speak more eloquently so that others might believe in you.

    October 17, 2010 at 10:36 am |
    • Muneef

      We say your Hand fingers are not the same in lenght and another we say that there is a Toilet in every house, which would mean that there are Jerks in every nation at every post of responsibility.

      October 17, 2010 at 11:09 am |
  18. DP

    Christians aren't jerks. Some jerks just happen to be Christian.

    October 16, 2010 at 11:55 pm |
    • Muneef

      Might be as you said for allowing things to go out of hand such as the increase of Non God Believers and the ho-mos.

      October 17, 2010 at 10:23 am |
    • Peter F

      Oh, the profundity!

      October 19, 2010 at 4:11 pm |
  19. Laura

    @ Raison....Thanks for giving me that list and advice for postings, I really appreciate it! That thing moderated three times, and by the time I finally got it to "stick" I was "-" happy,lol!

    @CatholicMom and David....How am I watching it? Well, my son and his wife attend this church, and my daughter in law works there. I have been there a good bit for baptisms, and other events. I know the pastor, and have met a good bit of the people. I have also attended several services, as my son and daughter in law are very active in the church. A large number of other family members go there as well. Thats what I meant by I am watching it,lol.

    David Johnson

    You said, "Someday, I may return myself. There is one church c-u-r-r-ently, that I am watching. So far, it is good, meaning performing as instructed by the Lord."

    Why do you feel you are qualified to "judge" the churches? I think you have some real issues. I think you should find a church and then attend. If none of the churches are up to your standard, maybe your standard is not realistic. Maybe it is you and not them.?
    You are obviously very religious. Going it alone, without the feedback of others may be a problem.

    At any rate, I wish you well and hope you can redeem mankind.
    David, David David! (As Reality would say,lol)
    I hope I answered the first question above, addressed to you and CM.
    So, I have attended.

    To address your thinking I have issues....you are correct I do.
    . I will not be a member of a church such as the last one I described, for the reasons I stated.
    It was hard enuff even attending church, having left the original church of my childhood, which was Catholic. I had conflicts with thier teachings, when I was able to understand (as I got older), that alot of the CC stuff was in conflict with what I read in the bible. I did not care for the fact that everything was to be learned thru only reading what they decided things meant, and not to question them on anything.

    So, David, if that is what you call "judging" a church, then I guess I am guilty as sin,lol! However, I like to think of it as being "selective" in where I join myself to, as I take my walk with the Lord seriously.

    You said:
    You are obviously very religious. Going it alone, without the feedback of others may be a problem.

    At any rate, I wish you well and hope you can redeem mankind.

    I am not really going it alone. I have attended and still teach some bible studys, when needed. I have lots of Christian friends and family. My personal relationship with God is fine and I am a happy camper,lol. I also have some friends that are not Christian, Amongst them are a G-a-y person, a recovering dr-u-g a-d-d-i-c-t, and I have a few that are just rotten,lol! But I love em just the same. So there.
    How does that float your boat? J/K! I wish you well too! Althought I am no redeemer,lol! I am just a sheep...Baaaaaaaaaa!

    October 16, 2010 at 10:20 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Laura

      You said, "It was hard enuff even attending church, having left the original church of my childhood, which was Catholic. I had conflicts with thier teachings, when I was able to understand (as I got older), that alot of the CC stuff was in conflict with what I read in the bible."

      I certainly am not a fan of the Catholic Church. But, do you think you might find it hard to accept any religious doctrine, or opinion, that conflicts with your own? The Catholic Church is the original, Peter has the keys, Christian Church. If you follow this to its logical conclusion, you could obey the Church and find salvation. If I believed in a god, I would probably be a Catholic.

      October 17, 2010 at 1:22 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      Laura, you said, ‘….alot of the CC stuff was in conflict with what I read in the bible. I did not care for the fact that everything was to be learned thru only reading what they decided things meant, and not to question them on anything.’

      It is so amazing that the Holy Spirit handed out thousands if not millions of differing Truths to all Christians, isn’t it?; each Christian is the infallible interpreter of God’s Word……or was the Paraclete sent by Jesus Christ to guide and guard the Truth in His Church that He founded on Peter? It was Peter, the Rock on which Jesus Christ founded His Church…

      There are those who argue that Peter could not be the rock because GOD is,... 2Samuel 22:2. Well, not only does Scripture call Peter the rock, but it also calls Abraham the rock, in Isaiah 51:1-2. Also, who is the Light of the World? Jesus Christ is in John 8:12, but yet the Disciples are in Matthew 5:14.

      The words "Rock" and "Light of the World" are not limited to describe GOD alone.

      What is the pillar and foundation of the Truth, Laura? Do you follow your infallible interpretation of the Bible when you teach Bible classes or do you use the infallible interpretation of the ecclesial community that has you teaching the classes?

      October 18, 2010 at 12:50 pm |
  20. larry

    We are saved by our faith in Jesus Christ. Not by any works we may do. No man can earn his way into heaven. We are not saved by keeping the 10 Commandments, we are not saved by being members of a church. We are not saved by being baptized. We are not saved by being charitable. All of those things are good, and commendable, but they will not save you. You are saved only by believing the Gospel

    sounds pretty good until you realise that others belive in their faith just as strongly as you do but it's different than yours
    neither is any more correct than the other just different

    I think God is shaking her head at all our stupidity

    October 16, 2010 at 10:00 pm |
    • NL

      larry-
      If nothing you 'do' contributes to your salvation, then in what way is Christianity a system of morals?

      October 16, 2010 at 11:47 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      NL,
      If, I may state what I think larry may mean:

      We are saved because Jesus Christ died on the cross for our sins so that we may have life everlasting and that if we believe in Him we are saved by this faith and this is true. However, I think he also means that we must be born again [Sacrament of Baptism] because Jesus would not have COMMANDED the apostles to go out and baptize all nations and teach them [all nations] everything that He had told them. Jesus would not have said that we MUST take care of the poor and love our neighbor, or KEEP His laws until the end of time if these works were not to be coupled with His saving grace.

      Jesus Christ established His Church for us…it is a means of continuously flowing graces we need as we live our lives…when we fall [sin] and need help in reconciling ourselves to Jesus Christ…..the Church is there for us with Sacraments of grace.

      I see that one of larry’s sentences does say that ‘you are saved only by believing the Gospel’ but he must know that satan believes but is satan saved? No! He refused to do the will of God and so his believing did not save him.

      Larry must know that we can do nothing [no works] on our own but through Baptism we can do all things and are EXPECTED to because we now have Jesus Christ WORKING through us. We must cooperate with the grace bestowed upon us [through Baptism] and DO the work in the world that must continue since we are now the hands and feet of Jesus. Did Jesus sit idle or was He about doing the Father’s will? Are we not supposed to imitate Jesus Christ and do the Father’s will also?

      If I stated anything incorrectly as to what you meant, larry, please, correct my errors; thank you.

      October 17, 2010 at 5:12 pm |
    • NL

      CatholicMom-
      Funny how it's still a contested issue whether people are saved by grace alone, or if good works must be evident after salvation has been achieved. The confusion seems to stem from the struggle between Paul bringing the faith to gentiles not interested in following the Law and James who was still entrenched with Christians who were still practicing Jews. I guess you could force the two views together and say that you don't have to do good works before, or as a step towards, achieving salvation, but I really can't see where some protestants come up with the idea that once you are "saved" it doesn't matter how you behave afterwards. Clearly a "saved" person would be doing good works if they had really accepted Jesus, right?

      October 18, 2010 at 8:44 am |
    • CatholicMom

      NL,

      I understand your point…

      Protestants say we are not to judge but then judge their own soul as absolutely ‘saved.’ This the sin of presumption. Do they only read the verses of the Bible that say we are saved by faith…and forget that it was Martin Luther who used the words ‘saved by faith only’ and somehow that notion stuck. If someone can tell themselves that they are saved and that their actions do not affect their salvation…then why is God going to make a judgment when they pass into eternity…why will He come to judge the living and the dead at the end of time? Did not Jesus die for all? Who is it then who is going to be judged at the end of time?

      Of course, we are to have faith but faith in ALL that Jesus Christ said. All the Words of the Bible are God’s Words…not just the ones about Faith. We can have an as-surance of being saved by faith because we are to have ‘hope’ [Rom 8:24];… yes, faith, hope, and love [charity].

      The greatest of these three is love…we need faith and we need hope but only love endures throughout eternity…faith and hope are for those living in this age and those things are no longer needed once we are in Heaven where only Love abounds.

      October 18, 2010 at 11:57 am |
    • NL

      CatholicMom-

      Billy Graham made the correct argument that you could never earn your salvation through good works, but I'm pretty sure that he never argued that you could be 'saved' and not be producing good works afterwards. It only follows, right? You have a disease (sinfulness) and you take the prescribed cure (accepting Jesus) and you'll know that it's worked if the symptoms (sinful actions) disappear and you end up feeling better (producing 'good works'). Protestants that argue otherwise are basically saying that you take the pill and it doesn't matter how crappy you feel afterwards you're still cured, and that really shouldn't compute even for a believer, right?

      October 18, 2010 at 1:54 pm |
    • CatholicMom

      NL,
      It seems to me that Billy Graham never said that one should ever do good works after Baptism. I never heard him talk about Baptism. He could have as I am sure I did not hear all of his talks. Didn’t he say that one was ‘born again’ by asking Jesus into your heart, not by the Sacrament of Baptism? Didn’t Jesus say to the Apostles to go out and Baptize? I don’t know if Billy Graham is Baptist, but I know of some Baptists who say that Baptism is just a means of showing you are ready to participate in being part of the congregation.
      Seems Baptism was much more important than that to Jesus Christ.

      October 18, 2010 at 11:42 pm |
    • NL

      CatholicMom-
      Graham would probably argue that John the Baptist never dunked infants into the River Jordan, so why should modern-day Christians baptize babies? Apart from illustrating to the congregation that they have a duty to raise the child as a good Catholic what practical purpose does it actually have within the RCC? Millions of folks may now be leading entirely different spiritual lives unaware of the fact that their parents once got them wet at a Catholic church when they were a baby. So, I can see where protestants simply equate infant baptism with some kind of magical rite.

      Confirmation really ought to be the rite where people accept Jesus and dedicate their lives to him, but I went through that too and it was so automatic I doubt any of us tweens really 'meant' what we were saying. But that's just the same as the 5 year olds who 'get saved' in evangelical households in my view. Everyone seems to push their kids into making the decision early. I'm not even sure if we were seriously given the option not to get confirmed with our age group. Point is I really do see the protestant view that accepting Christianity really ought to be an adult decision.

      October 19, 2010 at 8:53 am |
    • CatholicMom

      NL,
      Just because Graham may argue that John the Baptist never Baptized a baby, is no reason for the Christian to not Baptize their baby. When Jesus Christ commanded the Apostles to go out to all nations and Baptize, He did not say ‘except for babies’ or ‘wait until persons are x-number of years old and then baptize them.’

      The Church has taken into account all that She has been handed through Tradition. Tradition are the Truths handed on to the Apostles and their successors which they lived by, without a Bible, for almost 400 years. Would you or Graham argue that no baby was Baptized in all those years or would you come to realize that the Paraclete did, in fact, come to the Apostles as promised by Jesus Christ and bring them into all remembrances of what He had taught them and in that knowledge were the Sacraments?

      In Adam all die, in Christ all are made ALIVE. This is a gift from God…that none need be held back from because of age….for didn’t He say, “Let the children come to me for to such belong the kingdom?”

      Baptism now replaced circu-mcision and at the Council of Carthage [252 AD] the opinion was condemned that babies had to wait until 8 days old for Baptism as was the case for circu-mcision. People and whole households were healed and saved at once, even by another’s faith…such as the servant of a Centurion was healed by the Centurion’s faith.

      Once Baptized always Baptized. It cannot be ‘done over’. This is the Sacrament that marks us as God’s children. Who does not want to be adopted by God or to have their children adopted by God? With Baptism we become temples of God, we become members of His Body, our sins are washed away [original sin in babies], it is the beginning of a new life from death to new life in the Holy Spirit.

      The thing about the Sacraments is that they are for our benefit…they make it possible for us to grow in faith and do the will of God; waiting until the child is an adult is very risky in this world where there is much to draw them away from God. Just as we renew our Baptismal vows every Easter Sunday we fully commit ourselves in keeping our relationship with the Lord which started actually at our conception; all Sacraments are grace filled gifts that help us along our journey. No one need travel alone.

      October 19, 2010 at 6:10 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.