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My Take: The Bible’s surprisingly mixed messages on sexuality
February 9th, 2011
10:31 AM ET

My Take: The Bible’s surprisingly mixed messages on sexuality

Editor's Note: Jennifer Wright Knust is author of Unprotected Texts: The Bible’s Surprising Contradictions about Sex and Desire.

By Jennifer Wright Knust, Special to CNN

We often hears that Christians have no choice but to regard homosexuality as a sin - that Scripture simply demands it.

As a Bible scholar and pastor myself, I say that Scripture does no such thing.

"I love gay people, but the Bible forces me to condemn them" is a poor excuse that attempts to avoid accountability by wrapping a very particular and narrow interpretation of a few biblical passages in a cloak of divinely inspired respectability.

Truth is, Scripture can be interpreted in any number of ways. And biblical writers held a much more complicated view of human sexuality than contemporary debates have acknowledged.

In Genesis, for example, it would seem that God’s original intention for humanity was androgyny, not sexual differentiation and heterosexuality.

Genesis includes two versions of the story of God’s creation of the human person. First, God creates humanity male and female and then God forms the human person again, this time in the Garden of Eden. The second human person is given the name Adam and the female is formed from his rib.

Ancient Christians and Jews explained this two-step creation by imagining that the first human person possessed the genitalia of both sexes. Then, when the androgynous, dually-sexed person was placed in the garden, s/he was divided in two.

According to this account, the man “clings to the woman” in an attempt to regain half his flesh, which God took from him once he was placed in Eden. As third century Rabbi Samuel bar Nahman explained, when God created the first man, God created him with two faces. “Then he split the androgyne and made two bodies, one on each side, and turned them about.”

When the apostle Paul envisioned the bodies that would be given to humanity at the end of time, he imagined that they would be androgynous, “not male and female.” The third-century non-canonical Gospel of Philip, meanwhile, lamented that sexual difference had been created at all: “If the female had not separated from the male, she and the male would not die. That being’s separation became the source of death.”

From these perspectives, God’s original plan was sexual unity in one body, not two. The Genesis creation stories can support the notion that sexual intercourse is designed to reunite male and female into one body, but they can also suggest that God’s blessing was first placed on an undifferentiated body that didn’t have sex at all.

Heterosexual sex was therefore an afterthought designed to give back the man what he had lost.

Despite common misperceptions, biblical writers could also imagine same-sex intimacy as a source of blessing. For example, the seemingly intimate relationship between the Old Testament's David and Jonathan, in which Jonathan loved David more than he loved women, may have been intended to justify David’s rise as king.

Jonathan, not David, was a king’s son. David was only a shepherd. Yet by becoming David’s “woman,” Jonathan voluntarily gave up his place for his beloved friend.

Thus, Jonathan “took great delight in David,” foiling King Saul’s attempts to arrange for David’s death (1 Samuel 19:1). Choosing David over his father, Jonathan makes a formal covenant with his friend, asking David to remain faithful to him and his descendants.

Sealing the covenant, David swears his devotion to Jonathan, “for he loved him as he loved his own life” (1 Samuel 20:17). When Jonathan is killed, King David composes a eulogy for him, praising his devotion: “greatly beloved were you to me; your love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women” (2 Samuel 1:26).

Confident claims about the forms of sex rejected by God are also called into question by early Christian interpretations of the story of Sodom. From the perspective of the New Testament, it was the near rape of angels - not sex between men - that led to the demise of the city.

Linking a strange story in Genesis about “sons of God” who lust after “daughters of men” to the story of the angels who visit Abraham’s nephew Lot, New Testament writers concluded that the mingling of human and divine flesh is an intolerable sin.

As the New Testament letter Jude puts it:

And the angels who did not keep their own position, but left their proper dwelling, he has kept in eternal chains in deepest darkness for the judgment of the great day. Likewise, Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities which, in the same manner as they, indulged in sexual immorality and went after strange flesh, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire (Jude 6-7).

The first time angels dared to mix with humans, God flooded the earth, saving only Noah, his family, and the animals. In the case of Sodom, as soon as men attempted to engage in sexual activity with angels, God obliterated the city with fire, delivering only Lot and his family. Sex with angels was regarded as the most dangerous and offensive sex of all.

It’s true that same-sex intimacy is condemned in a few biblical passages. But these passages, which I can count on one hand, are addressed to specific sex acts and specific persons, not to all humanity forever, and they can be interpreted in any number of ways.

The book of Leviticus, for example, is directed at Israelite men, offering instructions regarding legitimate sexual partners so long as they are living in Israel. Biblical patriarchs and kings violate nearly every one of these commandments.

Paul’s letters urge followers of Christ to remain celibate and blame all Gentiles in general for their poor sexual standards. Jesus, meanwhile, says nothing at all about same-sex pairing, and when he discusses marriage, he discourages it.

So why are we pretending that the Bible is dictating our sexual morals? It isn’t.

Moreover, as Americans we should have learned by now that such a simplistic approach to the Bible will lead us astray.

Only a little more than a century ago, many of the very same passages now being invoked to argue that the scriptures label homosexuality a sin or that God cannot countenance gay marriage were used to justify not “biblical marriage” but slavery.

Yes, the apostle Paul selected same-sex pairings as one among many possible examples of human sin, but he also assumed that slavery was acceptable and then did nothing to protect slaves from sexual use by their masters, a common practice at the time. Letters attributed to him go so far as to command slaves to obey their masters and women to obey their husbands as if they were obeying Christ.

These passages served as fundamental proof texts to those who were arguing that slavery was God’s will and accusing abolitionists of failing to obey biblical mandates.

It is therefore disturbing to hear some Christian leaders today claim that they have no choice but to regard homosexuality as a sin. They do have a choice and should be held accountable for the ones they are making.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Jennifer Wright Knust.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Bible • Homosexuality • Opinion • Sex

soundoff (4,235 Responses)
  1. TJustSaying

    Test two are my posted being updated?

    February 13, 2011 at 11:33 am |
  2. TJustSaying

    Are you from the NFL?
    Spencer
    Automatic 'F', really? No opportunity to defend your research? Doesn't sound like your school is interested in supporting any scholarly work at all if they already know what accepted conclusions are. Must be a bible college, or Liberty University perhaps? Sounds like you're on your way to becoming another standard issue theology automaton.

    February 13, 2011 at 11:22 am |
  3. TJustSaying

    Test Post

    February 13, 2011 at 11:20 am |
  4. jimbob

    I love how many interpretations you need for "Gods Perfect word." God must have been pretty damn illiterate and in need of some basic grammar and language comprehension classes, which is strange for an all powerful being. It's also funny how a grandmother in Africa can send an e-mail to her pen pal in the united states and it would have more clarity than a 2000 year old book, and yet people believe this stuff. Especially given how worthless the book actually is. The only importance it has is because of it's cultural meaning, take that away and you can get your inspiration and will to live from much better mythology. Might I suggest Harry Potter, at least it's written better.

    February 13, 2011 at 8:43 am |
  5. Shawn

    CNN has stooped to a new low with this opinion piece.

    Author's 2nd sentence claims authority: "As a Bible scholar and pastor myself..."
    Then she gives us NO ancient text examples in original languages of Greek, Hebrew, Arimaic, or even Latin. Author does not even offer that smallest of excuses: "lost in translation".

    High school English teachers & instructors of research papers everywhere speak now your resounding "FAIL."

    February 13, 2011 at 1:43 am |
  6. Andeedo

    This is a great reminder for my Christian friends. God gave you a brain so you could think. It is possible, even likely, that nobody has yet properly interpreted the scriptures. You could be the first. When you read scripture let your mind be guided by the felt presence of God, not Glen Beck.

    February 13, 2011 at 12:45 am |
  7. Rioo

    The OPINIONS expressed in the bible are SOLELY those of the authors of the bible.

    February 13, 2011 at 12:23 am |
  8. Muneef

    What is the new world order view towards multi culture adaptation? And if they meant by integration (to fuse) cultures by means of (racial,religious,language,tribal+) in to some new one colorless format?!
    Giving example about multi culture of human nations and within each multi culture nation....!   "Imagine a fields of Tulip flowers all fields in one color say white or black or any single color? Then imagine fields of Tulip Flowers each field has different single colors or multicolored ones"?!      
    What do we want collectively that it matters and not by the new regime?! So do we really hate our cultures being? Or do we hate being an off springs of multi culture marriages as to being called (Colored)? Believe we shouldn't be underestimating being colored nor feel inferior...but rather cling a good hold of those languages culture traditions that are felt for with pride...
    Why I will tell you that as a Muslim believer I believe that God has created our fathers Adam and Eve from a multicolored earth (Clay). Then sons of Adam and Eve became to take colors as were the colors of the Clay the were made of. Since then human race became as "Human Tulips" cultural varieties of which should be maintained although it is already experimenting it self by the inter cultural  marriages which became to be called "Colored" by the both nations he holds?!
    Easy living example with my full respect to "BO" is looked upon both races he holds as colored "He is Black among White and White among Blacks" so you see such as those where they stand or have paths among extremes?
    (http://www.montrealbelvedereflowers.info/page/10/)

    February 12, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
  9. NateDean

    About http://www.greatcom.org/resources/areadydefense/ch20/default.htm... I read it. This site is all about proving the resurrection of Jesus really happened. Fair enough. It's hard to take it seriously, though, when it uses quotes from the Bible to support the premise. The most disturbing aspect is that we are supposed to take it as gospel (so to speak) because some law professors tell us to. This site is simply propaganda cloaked in the guise of serious historical research. I'm not anti-Christian. I am against having my intelligence insulted.

    February 12, 2011 at 2:42 pm |
  10. David Johnson

    I randomly selected your "experts" who found the evidence for Jesus so compelling. All that I checked out, were big time believers. They offered only their opinions. No evidence.

    There are no contemporary witnesses, that are known, of Jesus.

    No writings by Jesus. Not even a shelf made for His mother, by carpenter Jesus.

    Everything we know, comes from the Gospels. The Gospels were written by unknown authors at least 40 years after Jesus died. Paul, who never met Jesus, wrote of Him, about 25 years after His death.

    The Gospels were written with the goal of "proving" Jesus was the Messiah. Great emphasis was put on Jesus' fulfilling of the prophecies of the Old Testament. The authors made sure the prophesies came true.

    Some prophesies did not come true. Christians say Jesus will fulfill these, on a second trip. The Jews claim, the real Messiah will not need a second trip. Hmmm...

    The Gospels are written in the third person. Not the first person as would be expected of eyewitness testimony.

    There are no secular writings of Jesus that are not suspect, being either later insertions or heresay. Most of the writings are by authors, who were not born until Jesus had died. So, at best they are heresay.

    So, I am a disbeliever and I have read the web page. And, I still disbelieve.

    Cheers!

    February 12, 2011 at 10:49 am |
    • Nathaniel Rose

      But if all religion is the trueth then which one is the True religion to follow. This is one of the main questions to answer for each answer is woud always be the wrong one.

      February 12, 2011 at 7:05 pm |
    • Muneef

      As-Saff sura 61:
      In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
      And when Jesus son of Mary said: O Children of Israel! Lo! I am the messenger of Allah unto you, confirming that which was (revealed) before me in the Torah, and bringing good tidings of a messenger who cometh after me, whose name is the Praised One. Yet when he hath come unto them with clear proofs, they say: This is mere magic. (6) And who doeth greater wrong than he who inventeth a lie against Allah when he is summoned unto Al-Islam? And Allah guideth not wrongdoing folk. (7) Fain would they put out the light of Allah with their mouths, but Allah will perfect His light however much the disbelievers are averse. (8) He it is Who hath sent His messenger with the guidance and the religion of Truth, that He may make it conqueror of all religion however much idolaters may be averse. (9).

      February 12, 2011 at 9:50 pm |
    • Muneef

      Al-Maeda sura 05:
      In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
      Lo! We did reveal the Torah, wherein is guidance and a light, by which the prophets who surrendered (unto Allah) judged the Jews, and the rabbis and the priests (judged) by such of Allah's Scripture as they were bidden to observe, and thereunto were they witnesses. So fear not mankind, but fear Me. And barter not My revelations for a little gain. Whoso judgeth not by that which Allah hath revealed: such are disbelievers. (44) And We prescribed for them therein: The life for the life, and the eye for the eye, and the nose for the nose, and the ear for the ear, and the tooth for the tooth, and for wounds retaliation. But whoso forgoeth it (in the way of charity) it shall be expiation for him. Whoso judgeth not by that which Allah hath revealed: such are wrong-doers. (45) And We caused Jesus, son of Mary, to follow in their footsteps, confirming that which was (revealed) before him in the Torah, and We bestowed on him the Gospel wherein is guidance and a light, confirming that which was (revealed) before it in the Torah – a guidance and an admonition unto those who ward off (evil). (46) Let the People of the Gospel judge by that which Allah hath revealed therein. Whoso judgeth not by that which Allah hath revealed: such are evil-livers. (47) And unto thee have We revealed the Scripture with the truth, confirming whatever Scripture was before it, and a watcher over it. So judge between them by that which Allah hath revealed, and follow not their desires away from the truth which hath come unto thee. For each We have appointed a divine law and a traced-out way. Had Allah willed He could have made you one community. But that He may try you by that which He hath given you (He hath made you as ye are). So vie one with another in good works. Unto Allah ye will all return, and He will then inform you of that wherein ye differ. (48) So judge between them by that which Allah hath revealed, and follow not their desires, but beware of them lest they seduce thee from some part of that which Allah hath revealed unto thee. And if they turn away, then know that Allah's Will is to smite them for some sin of theirs. Lo! many of mankind are evil-livers. (49) Is it a judgment of the time of (pagan) ignorance that they are seeking? Who is better than Allah for judgment to a people who have certainty (in their belief)? (50).

      February 12, 2011 at 9:57 pm |
    • Muneef

      Nathaniel Rose.

      Hi, have supplied you two parts of sura's for you to read and see for your self what it tries to convey to you...!

      February 12, 2011 at 10:01 pm |
    • batteryinme

      Wonderfully written.

      February 14, 2011 at 11:12 am |
  11. PeterVN

    Given all the debate and commentary about different interpretations of the bible, it is clear that the Christian god, a purportedly omnipotent being, has major communication and marketing weaknesses. It can't reliably get its message out.

    So, Christians, think about this a bit more. This is an all-powerful being that you are claiming, yet it apparently needs a clunky book to get its message across. and the messaging is subject to multiple interpretations. That's utterly ridiculous for a "god". An all-powerful being could easily just insert its message into its subjects minds, no book required and no room for interpretation.

    Also, the message isn't even accepted by billions of potential flock members. So, in that sense, the communication is also flawed, and Christian "god" is again clearly not omnipotent, nor omnipresent.

    Therefore, the Christian god must be pure fiction. Case closed.

    February 12, 2011 at 10:25 am |
    • Nathaniel Rose

      Here, here!

      February 12, 2011 at 1:36 pm |
  12. NathanielRose

    Aaaw, c'mon guys. What are we even arguing about anway? We all know, deep down, that it's all a bunch of hogwash, a collection of fables compiled in an effort to explain the unexplainable and thus further legitemise those in power and subjugate the illiterate masses.God is simply a parent replacement for those who cannot handle this life by themselves and needs someone's hand (real or imaginary) to hold on to.
    The sooner the human race puts aside this childish irrelevance, the better we all will be.

    February 12, 2011 at 8:56 am |
    • Gsus Freek

      The sooner the human race puts aside this childish irrelevance, the better we all will be?

      In the last 30 years this world has been putting God away and look at how much this world sux because of it

      February 12, 2011 at 12:13 pm |
    • Eric G.

      @gsus freak: Can you please give some examples of how putting your God away has damaged the world in the last 30 years?

      February 12, 2011 at 12:24 pm |
  13. inerrantword

    This is one of the most poorly written and rubbish articles/blog posts I have ever read. I do not believe she has looked at the Scriptures properly or anything. She has made fundamental errors in logic, and exegesis. Context seems to mean nothing to here and obviously she has no use for the original languages of Hebrew and Greek. What a diabolical mess. An absolute disgrace and pretty much blasphemy.

    February 12, 2011 at 4:28 am |
    • mini09

      shuuut up with your blasphemy, only priests of the ancient word would cry blasphemy that word does not mean anything anymore unless you will go and stone the writer to death.

      February 13, 2011 at 12:01 pm |
  14. Bob

    PROPHECY!!!!!!JESUS IS COMING SOON !!!!!! The very elect shall be deceived.....Be warned christian brothers and sisters.

    February 11, 2011 at 10:12 pm |
    • NL

      Bob-
      "JESUS IS COMING SOON !!!!!!"

      Yup, any millennia now!

      February 11, 2011 at 10:30 pm |
    • Malkav

      Soon? Why not set a date? The Mayans did. Even if wrong, they at least took a shot. Xtns will continue to say their zombie man will come "soon" until all have both passed onto whatever afterlife there may, or may not, be.

      February 13, 2011 at 11:03 am |
  15. Jabberwocky

    Oh, bull spit. Steve the real one sucks dead priests.

    February 11, 2011 at 9:22 pm |
  16. Jon

    This is an example of a pseudo-scholar who reads her predetermined opinions into the Bible. Her examples are poor interpretations of the text and she quotes a few marginal scholars who share her presuppositions. It's a shame that this is posted as a scholarly article on the biblical text. It's like posting a 9/11 conspiracy theory article and calling it an informed look at history.

    February 11, 2011 at 9:15 pm |
    • NL

      Jon-
      "This is an example of a pseudo-scholar who reads her predetermined opinions into the Bible."
      Or you are an example of a person of faith who reads his predetermined opinions into the Bible, right?

      February 11, 2011 at 10:26 pm |
    • Spencer

      "as a biblical-scholar and pastor" I'm a theology major and if we turned in any work like this....automatic 'F'
      I'm going to show it to my professor and say "but if they can do crappy work on CNN, why not here in class too!"

      February 12, 2011 at 1:06 am |
    • inerrantword

      Yup, Jon. I would have to whole-heartedly agree. Evene someone without a bias wouldn't have these digraceful views

      February 12, 2011 at 4:30 am |
    • NL

      Spencer
      Automatic 'F', really? No opportunity to defend your research? Doesn't sound like your school is interested in supporting any scholarly work at all if they already know what accepted conclusions are. Must be a bible college, or Liberty University perhaps? Sounds like you're on your way to becoming another standard issue theology automaton.

      February 12, 2011 at 2:04 pm |
  17. Atreyuth

    Babies are a product of a man and a woman and any offspring can have emotions and physical characteristics of either, both or in between. Our biology is so complex we even have babies born with well, very special features. How hard is it to understand. Is faith so strong that it can over ride common sense?

    February 11, 2011 at 8:53 pm |
  18. Muneef

    Al-Naml (Ants) sura 27:
    In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
    Must ye needs lust after men instead of women? Nay, but ye are folk who act senselessly. (55) But the answer of his folk was naught save that they said: Expel the household of Lot from your township, for they (forsooth) are folk who would keep clean! (56) Then We saved him and his household save his wife; We destined her to be of those who stayed behind. (57) And We rained a rain upon them. Dreadful is the rain of those who have been warned. (58) Say (O Muhammad): Praise be to Allah, and peace be on His slaves whom He hath chosen! Is Allah best, or (all) that ye ascribe as partners (unto Him)? (59).

    February 11, 2011 at 7:45 pm |
  19. Jonathan

    This is a really great example of really bad scholarship. There is obviously no real understanding of original languages, and certainly no understanding of Hebrew culture. What on earth good would this information be to a bunch of slaves on their way out of the land of Egypt be? They need to know who this God is that is freeing them, and what their identify is as a people. You really need to consider the original audience that Moses is writing to. It will help you not be so off base in your understanding of what this book is communicating. AND THAT IS JUST THE GENESIS PART....

    February 11, 2011 at 7:05 pm |
    • NL

      Jonathan-
      "You really need to consider the original audience that Moses is writing to."
      You mean the audience that Moses wrote describing his own death to?

      Deuteronomy 34:5-8 "5 And Moses the servant of the LORD died there in Moab, as the LORD had said. 6 He buried him[a] in Moab, in the valley opposite Beth Peor, but to this day no one knows where his grave is. 7 Moses was a hundred and twenty years old when he died, yet his eyes were not weak nor his strength gone. 8 The Israelites grieved for Moses in the plains of Moab thirty days, until the time of weeping and mourning was over."

      How, exactly, did Moses write this?

      February 11, 2011 at 7:16 pm |
    • Spencer

      @NL It doesn't take a lot to consider that after Moses wrote the main part of the book, someone came by and decided that this tidbit of infomation would be useful to its readers...happens all the time. Hope your faith fails not!

      February 12, 2011 at 1:04 am |
    • David Johnson

      @Jonathan

      There is no evidence to support the story of Exodus.

      "The Bible's Buried Secrets" the t itle of a NOVA program. Its first airing was on PBS, on November 18, 2008.

      "There is no evidence to support the mass exodus of the Israelites from Egypt, although some now believe that a small group did escape from Egypt; however, they were not Israelites but, rather, Canaanite slaves. On their journey back to Canaan they pass through Midian, where they are inspired by stories of the Shasu's god, Yhw."

      Cheers!

      February 12, 2011 at 10:06 am |
    • NL

      Spencer-
      It doesn't take a lot to consider that after Moses wrote the main part of the book, someone came by and decided that this tidbit of infomation would be useful to its readers...happens all the time. Hope your faith fails not!

      Hmm... interesting idea. So you're saying that people felt compelled to simply add to scripture whatever they thought it needed, to be... more useful to readers? So, add Moses' death to his own writing. Then, maybe, after some army invades why not add some prophecy here and there, just to make it clear to the reader why Israel was being punished. Jesus didn't say something you feel he ought to have? Well just put those words in his mouth anyway, right?

      But why stop at scripture? Why not add a reference or two about Jesus to some other ancient writing. That would explain why that part in Josephus sticks out like a sore thumb. Actually, I'm pretty sure you're onto something here!

      February 12, 2011 at 1:48 pm |
    • Micah

      I agree that it's pseudo-scholarship, but the last 8 lines of the Bible about Moses dying is not YOUR question. The BABYLONIAN TALMUD, tractate Bava Basra (Batra) asks the question. The Talmud says Moses wrote everything, but the last 8 verses either Joshua wrote it, or Moses wrote it with tears. The entire 5 books was anyway dictated – how else would Moses have known what happened with Bilaam and Balak?

      If you would ask questions to people who know the answers, you might actually get some.

      February 12, 2011 at 1:54 pm |
  20. Johnny Moscow

    I think the very last sentence in this article sums it up: The OPINIONS expressed in this commentary are SOLELY those of Jennifer Wright Knust.

    February 11, 2011 at 6:28 pm |
    • NL

      Johnny Moscow-
      "I think the very last sentence in this article sums it up: The OPINIONS expressed in this commentary are SOLELY those of Jennifer Wright Knust."
      It's an article in the 'Opinions' section of the blog, and they all have the exact same disclaimer. Funny how I didn't see anybody harp on this point in the "My Take: When the fat girl got mad at God" article. I guess it's not that it's an opinion that bothers you, it's just that it's a different opinion.

      February 11, 2011 at 7:07 pm |
    • Jonathan

      Well said.

      February 11, 2011 at 7:11 pm |
    • Spencer

      Amen for that, because I was thinking that was a bit too much....even for CNN. Her mind is a bit on the loony side there...

      February 12, 2011 at 1:01 am |
    • Kevin

      EXCELLENT article. So many people are blinded by their hate and ignorance they cannot see the liberation found in the holy scriptures. Thank you to Jennifer Wright Knust for having the courage to speak the TRUTH.

      February 12, 2011 at 10:55 am |
    • NL

      Spencer
      "Her mind is a bit on the loony side there..."

      Why, because she offers a different view to the traditional one?

      February 12, 2011 at 1:26 pm |
    • Bill

      Better still the opinions to be found in the Bible are just that.
      Whatever the word of God might be, it certainly never found much of its way into that book!

      February 12, 2011 at 10:58 pm |
    • mini09

      this is not a reply directly to you johnny moscow...i just couldn't add my comment alone.

      but all of the others who quote biblical text annoy the sh&* out of me shut the f up and just state your opinion, we dont need a lecture! aarrrhggh

      my opinion: i do believe the Bible is up to interpretation because that is exactly what it is, interpretations of people who believed they heard the Word of God and stories with allusions...but think this, if someone today told you that they were speaking the Word of God and from this said that we needed to kill a babies born of mixed races, would you immediately go for it and believe him/her? Of course not, you would think such a person is insane. Well what makes you think people who lived thousands of years ago have a better reach to the supposed Higher Power?? Especially with much less medical/scientific knowledge to study and explain things, so they described natural occurances such as a lightning strike or an earthquake explicable only as God. More over, people who were thought to be describing the Word of God would today be described as psychotic or delusional.

      February 13, 2011 at 11:53 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.