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My Take: Why some people hate God
March 8th, 2011
10:07 AM ET

My Take: Why some people hate God

Editor's Note: Bernard Schweizer is an associate professor of English at Long Island University in Brooklyn. He specializes in the study of iconoclasts and rebels, including the controversial writer and public intellectual Rebecca West. His third book is “Hating God.”

By Bernard Schweizer, Special to CNN

There’s a lost tribe of religious believers who have suffered a lasting identity crisis. I am referring to the category-defying species of believers who accept the existence of the creator God and yet refuse to worship him. In fact they may go so far as to say that they hate God.
 
No, I’m not talking about atheists. Non-believers may say contemptuous things about God, but when they do so, they are simply giving the thumbs-down to a fictional character. They may as well express dislike about Shakespeare’s devious Iago, Dickens’ scheming Uriah Heep or Dr. Seuss’ Grinch who stole Christmas.
 
For atheists, God is in the same category as these fictional villains. Except that since God is the most popular of all fictional villains, New Atheists – those evangelizing ones such as Christopher Hitchens and Richard Dawkins - spend a considerable amount of energy enumerating his flaws.
 
But someone who truly believes in God’s existence and yet hates or scorns him is in a state of religious rebellion so perplexing as to strain our common understanding of faith to the breaking point.
 
Although these radical dissenters could steal the thunder from the New Atheists, they have remained almost unknown to date.
 
When it comes to God-hatred, a collective blindness seems to settle on us. First, we lack a generally agreed-upon name to refer to this religious rebellion. And anything that doesn’t have a word associated with it doesn’t exist, right?
 
Well, in the case of God-hatred, this principle doesn’t hold because the phenomenon does exist whether or not there’s a name for it. And in any case, I’ve ended the semantic impasse by naming these rebels and their stance once for all. My chosen term is misotheism, a word composed of the Greek root “misos” (hatred) and “theos” (deity).
 
Why do I care so much about them? They strike me as brave, visionary, intelligent people who reject God from a sense of moral outrage and despair because of the amount of injustice and suffering that they witness in this world.
 
At the same time, they are exercising self-censorship because they dare not voice their opinion openly. After all, publicly insulting God can have consequences ranging from ostracism to imprisonment, fines and even death, depending on where the blasphemy takes place (Ireland, for instance, imposes a fine of up to 25,000 Euros for blasphemy) and what God is the target of attacks (under sharia law, being found an enemy of God, or “mohareb” is a capital offense).
 
But I also care about these rebels because they chose literature as their principal medium for dealing with their God-hatred. I am a professor of literature, and the misotheists’ choice of literature as their first line of defense and preferred medium endears them to me.
 
Literature offered them the only outlet to vent their rage against God. And it was a pretty safe haven for doing so. Indeed, hardly anybody seems to notice when God-hatred is expressed in literature. Such writers cleverly “package” their blasphemous thoughts in works of literature without seeming to give offense in any overt way.
 
At the same time, these writers count on the reader’s cooperation to keep their “secret” safe. It’s like a pact between writer and reader.
 
Zora Neale Hurston could write that “all gods who receive homage are cruel” without anybody objecting that “all gods” must necessarily include the persons of the Christian Trinity.
 
Or Rebecca West could write that “something has happened which can only be explained by supposing that God hates you with merciless hatred, and nobody will admit it,” counting on the fact that, since nobody will admit it, nobody will rat her out for blasphemy.
 
There lies, in a sense, the awesome, subversive power of literary writing, something that had worried Plato 2,400 years ago when he required that all poets be removed from his ideal “Republic.” Interestingly, though, while guardians of propriety have put Huckleberry Finn on the list of proscribed texts because of its liberal use of the N-word, few people have declared Hurston’s "Their Eyes Were Watching God" or Shelley’s "Prometheus Unbound" or West’s "The Return of the Soldier" as forbidden texts because of the underlying misotheism of these works.
 
And even where the misotheism is overtly expressed, as in Elie Wiesel’s "The Trial of God" or in James Morrow’s "Godhead Trilogy," literature offers an enclave of religious freedom that is vital to the human spirit and its impulse to free itself of any shackles, even the commands of God.
 
I refer to the story of misotheism as “untold” partly because misotheism tends not to be noticed even when it hides in plain sight. Another reason why the story of misotheism is “untold” is that nobody has bothered yet to draw the larger lines of development over time, beginning with the Book of Job and ending up with utilitarianism, philosophical anarchism and feminism. That story in itself is quite engrossing, but again it is not a story that has really ever been presented.
 
So I am doing quite a bit of connecting the dots, unearthing overlooked connections and making distinctions such as proposing a system of three different types of misotheism - agonistic (conflicted), absolute and political. Misotheism in its various manifestations is a dark, disturbing and perplexing strand of religious dissent. But at the same time, it is an attitude toward the divine that shows just how compelling belief can be.
 
If people continue to believe in a God they find to be contemptible, then belief is such a powerful force that it cannot be simply switched off on the basis of empirical data. Thus, in the last consequence, the study of misotheism is a testament to the power of belief, albeit a twisted, unconventional form.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Bernard Schweizer.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • Books • God • Opinion

soundoff (1,730 Responses)
  1. WMesser58

    How can you get mad about something that doesn't exist. The anger comes from holy rollers of any religious group thinking they know better for everyone else. Please believe as you wish but, keep it to yourself because not everyone believes in fairy tales.

    March 8, 2011 at 4:55 pm |
  2. Bob

    Lets clear this up about the Amekalites. My understanding is that they were sacrificing their children to Molech. Even an atheist would have to admit that this is not 'good' or desirable behavior, although the basis for determining good vs. evil for the atheist rests on somewhat shaky ground (no moral absolute). It is made pretty clear in the Bible that there is a moral line, that when crossed, must be dealt with, in order to preserve society (we make those kinds of decisions on a smaller scale all the time: severe consequenses for serial rapists, pedophiles, murder, etc–add whatever you want to the list, it is a long one). So, the stories in the old testament about the various groups living in the area that is now called Israel are about a purging of a society that had gone from bad to worse to downright wicked. Understand that the old testament describes a process. It is a process of God communicating to mankind, through a specific people, who He is. This took time. Abraham did not know God by the name of Yaweah; he knew him as El Shadai. God worked through the failures of the Israelites (10 tribes were eventually dispersed into the nations due to rebellion) to the eventual goal of presenting His perfect solution to our problem (our lack of a relationship with Him). His Son breached the gap by means of His sacrifice (ever wonder why history is replete with 'blood sacrifices' to appease 'the gods'. Ask yourself, where did that come from???? So, the process of God bringing about His solution for sin is spread over time. The fruits of that solution are also spread over time. It is God's perogative. Obviously, we've got a lot of clay telling the potter how to make the pot. The purpose, as far as I can figure it, for allowing evil to exist, is to bring a man to his knees when he finally admits that evil exists in his own life and actions and he has no solution for it. This the Bible calls humbling yourself before God. Man, being a 'little god' in his own mind (making up rules, moral judgement, based primarily on feelings; "if they ain't doin it my way, they must be doin it wrong!!") finds this pretty hard to do. The Bible explains that, at the end, the restrainer will be taken away and evil will be given full sway. This, so that anyone who choses evil will have no excuse before the judge. Scary thought. However, now that we are such a small planet (internet, airplanes, etc.) the forces of evil have an instant and widespread impact. Doesn't take much, either. All that has to happen is the price of gasoline goes up, say 50 cents, and violent and material crime escalate. Question is, are we standing on the 'cusp' of something big right now?

    Food for thought: where did them first little cells get DNA from?; another: roughly 2300 years ago Plato addressed the implausibility of aliens 'seeding' life on this planet–where did those aliens come from, Oh, other aliens seeded life on their planet, etc., etc.–Plato called it 'infinite regression'; another: energy is never destroyed! Do we really know that, or is it a limited rule base on limited experience?; another: How did a chaotic universe create reason–it is essentially a contradiction–read C.S.Lewis's 'Miricals' for an interesting disertation (Ya gotta read more than Dawkins to figure any of this out–he says "Religion is the cause of all wars!". Got news for you, Mr. Dawkins, I'm pretty sure that even if we were able to eradicate religion from the planet, we'd still have wars, murder, hate crimes, greed, malice, etc. What a silly idea).

    March 8, 2011 at 4:45 pm |
    • TexasGuy

      The bible is just a fantasy story of made-up characters just like The Lord of the Rings. I recommend the Lord of the Rings.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
    • WMesser58

      @Texasguy– No truer words have been spoken. Lord of the Rings is way better.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:57 pm |
    • Q

      Do you really believe this clears up the issue with the Amalekites? They were sacrificing their children, so the moral thing to do is go in and preemptively slaughter the children and infants before they were allegedly sacrificed? This is what passes for logic or moral behavior to you? Furthermore, you clearly don't have the first clue about biology, DNA or abiogenesis.

      March 8, 2011 at 5:06 pm |
    • Reed

      You have to read The Hobbit first, but the LOTR trilogy is indeed thousands of times better than the Bible. And better written, too. Smith of Wooten Major and Farmer Giles of Ham are also excellent stories. Never got the hang of The Silmarillion, though.

      March 9, 2011 at 1:39 am |
  3. captnavenger

    I don't think Atheists believe in god as a villain, either. Not even the worst of all villains, as the author seems to think. To rail against god in that context, would be to assume a context that god exists, even if on a fictional level. Which is the same as imagining he exists, which for an Atheist would be the opposite of what they believe.

    The short of it is that Atheists are angry at PEOPLE. They are angry at the people who in their eyes cloud every rational judgment and ruin every good human thing with the specter of an all-knowing being they identify as having a hand in it, and who try as hard as they can to force that same irrational belief on them, and then force them to live by the same standard. A standard that in their minds is dishonest.

    Now, I am not an Atheist. But I understand where the more rational Atheists are coming from. I dislike the act of any person trying to force their god on me. Which is pretty much most everybody. I like people in general. But I dislike them a lot when they put their grubby paws on whatever passes for my soul. I share that with Atheists, and I think they have every right to feel that way, and frankly if I had to choose a side, I'd choose the rationalists. I'd be the only pseudo-deist, semi-heretical agnostic child of wonder in the room, but at least we'd all get along.

    March 8, 2011 at 4:43 pm |
  4. TexasGuy

    I know it is supposed to be mainly a money-making system, but organized religion is the root of all evil in this world.
    There is no god, no devil and no nothing after death. Do you remember anything before you were born? ... it's the same thing after you die! People who have "advanced" degrees and Phds in theology is a big joke based on an even bigger lie.
    Wake up people! This is all there is, enjoy life! Just follow this rule: "do unto others as you would have them do to you" .. that's all you need.

    March 8, 2011 at 4:41 pm |
  5. Toph

    "They strike me as brave, visionary, intelligent people who reject God from a sense of moral outrage and despair because of the amount of injustice and suffering that they witness in this world."

    Interesting, I consider this and the bible the Most daming evidence that there is no God. That and the fact that they did nothing to stop the Crusades, the inquisition and the Holocaust. I cannot imagine a benevolent diety allowing the slaughter of tens of millions of innocent people in their name. In fact any diety would morally be required to act.

    March 8, 2011 at 4:40 pm |
    • Mao

      So Seth and Durga are required to stop death?

      March 8, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
  6. Wisdom4u2

    This article could only be from his college entrance essay!! I'm quite sure he's learned more since then.

    March 8, 2011 at 4:31 pm |
  7. ObammaAlabamaSlamma

    Adam and Eve were the first human slaves to escape the confines of Eden, a technological workshop where The First People created wonders the likes of which will never be seen again. When they escaped, they also sabotaged key structures, which led to the fall of Eden.

    But in our progenitors' hubris, they did not realize that The First People were preparing for the coming threat; the sun is the true deity, and it will not suffer an ignominious fate. Nay, it hungers yet for more praise, adulation, and worship, and it will do anything to see it done again. Including a display of its awesome power.............

    March 8, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
    • LetsThink123

      is this a reply to my questions about the adam and eve creation myth earlier?

      March 8, 2011 at 4:30 pm |
    • ObammaAlabamaSlamma

      @LetsThink123

      No, this is about truth. We must start revering the sun again, lest all be lost. I imagine that it will take several hundred thousand people staring at the sun until they go blind, as a show of faith, in order for us to stave off a righteous solar cleansing.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
    • humblepie

      The Sun or the Son?

      March 8, 2011 at 4:37 pm |
    • LetsThink123

      @ObammaAlabamaSlamma
      oh yes I'll get right to it!

      March 8, 2011 at 4:45 pm |
    • ObammaAlabamaSlamma

      @humblepie

      The Son was no more divine than you or I. He merely had a Piece of Eden, which is a small bit of tech from the First People. Each Piece of Eden is unique, and grants the bearer the ability to complete certain feats that would be impossible without it.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:52 pm |
    • humblepie

      Can I assume that you have the proof to support this?

      March 8, 2011 at 5:13 pm |
  8. Bubba

    I'm waiting for someone to mention "God's Song" by Randy Newman, which perfectly expresses the point of the article.

    March 8, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
  9. LetsThink123

    @humblepie

    I remember reading a while back on cnn that the chicken and the egg paradox has been solved based on RNA replication. I dont know i if I can paste a link on this comment board, so you can easily look it up on google.

    March 8, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
    • humblepie

      I found it... Sounds a little suspect but I haven't had time to form an opinion. thxs

      March 8, 2011 at 4:41 pm |
    • Bubba

      A chicken is a cross between two kinds of 'jungle fowl.' One day a jungle fowl laid an egg that hatched a chicken. Pretty obvious if you break it down. Google red junglefowl if you want to see what I mean.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
  10. Kendall

    I would like to see CNN do an article on a religious idea and flat out say, "Atheists....you don't need to comment, this doesn't concern you."

    Then have another article made just for atheists and asking the non-atheists not to comment on it. If everyone would do this there probably be very very few comments on either.

    March 8, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
    • humblepie

      Just think of the outcome of that one if they did that to Paul in the Synagogue's he visited...

      March 8, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
    • Kendall

      Paul probably wouldn't have spent so much time in prisons..lol.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:55 pm |
    • Ali

      It seems to be very popular to argue with one another than to agree with each other. There would be no fun in it?!

      March 8, 2011 at 4:55 pm |
    • Observer

      How about articles supporting rights for everyone including gays and keeping non-gay Christians from commenting?

      March 8, 2011 at 4:58 pm |
    • humblepie

      @ Kendall

      Well... wasn't the point that I was trying to make but I guess that's one way to look at it.

      March 8, 2011 at 5:00 pm |
    • Kendall

      @Observer- As long as the article didn't invite everyone's opinion on the topic..I suppose it could be done.

      March 8, 2011 at 6:36 pm |
    • Kendall

      @humblepie- I know..I was just kidding. But without the confrontations that Paul had..our understanding of Pauline Christianity would be much much smaller than what it is today.

      March 8, 2011 at 6:38 pm |
  11. Fuyuko

    I don't hate God. But I don't believe in the biblical God, especially the evil one portrayed in the old testament who murders people. I tend to believe that God is more like how the deists view him.

    March 8, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
  12. Kenrick Benjamin

    Why can't God please everyone at all times, I am sure you can answer that question if you are asking it.

    March 8, 2011 at 4:19 pm |
  13. James Quall

    i just pray that Father Zeus and Mother Isis will give these non-believers enlightenment. wait....

    March 8, 2011 at 4:18 pm |
  14. humblepie

    This Sunday is "Bring your Atheists friend to Church day"... any takers?

    March 8, 2011 at 4:13 pm |
    • Anotheralt

      Do agnostics count? I love church services 🙂 People are usually very friendly and sometimes there's OJ.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
    • humblepie

      That's the spirit! Of course they do Anotheralt... (It's always easier when you offer your friendship first and let your lifestyle offer your belief or religion)

      March 8, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
    • SeanNJ

      I may have attended church services more in my lifetime than you have. I'm not kidding.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
    • Bubba

      You gonna sleep late the next Sunday in exchange? It's Keep a Believer Away From Church Day.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
    • humblepie

      No, but I'll agree to hang out late on a Saturday in observance of "Make it hard for believer to make it to Church day". Deal?

      March 8, 2011 at 4:53 pm |
  15. tryui567

    In my opinion, anyone that believes in a God and then hates that God is extremely troubled in the mind.

    March 8, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
    • Fuyuko

      why so? makes sense to me. you can believe in the devil and also hate him..

      March 8, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
  16. DAT

    I have "faith" or believe that one day i will win the lottery. the odds are something like 1:18,000,000.
    The odds of something or someone creating all of this are infinite.

    The truth is that we are lucky enough to be born and evolve from an cell for millions and millions of years and live on a rock in perfect part of a solar system in a perfect part of a galaxy.

    Just lucky.....that is it.
    Hopefully there are other lucky beings out there that one day we can hang out with.

    March 8, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
    • Anotheralt

      Or maybe your knowledge of metaphysical statistics isn't complete. You still might be right, but let's not bring odds into it.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:14 pm |
    • DAT

      "The odds of something or someone creating all of this are infinite."

      sorry – – I meant "an intelligent designer" creating all of this.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
  17. Andrew

    ???, You sound a little confused, let me help you out, Atheism is not a religion, it is freedom from religion and worship. Atheists do not struggle with the question of weather god exists, people who worship and go to church do. We do not suddenly "gain faith" in times of great joy or luck, like believers lose faith in times of great stress. You yourself are an atheist about thor, odin, the flying spaghetti monster or shiva, you just happened to be raised in a christian household, so you are a christian. If your parents had allowed you to draw your own conclusions about life you would be an atheist as well.

    March 8, 2011 at 4:07 pm |
    • Anotheralt

      Christians devoutly believe there is a God, atheists devoutly believe there isn't. Both lack sufficient evidence to provide definitive conclusion. Freedom from religion that's based on blanket rejection of the possibility isn't really freedom, is it?

      March 8, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
    • Mao

      "you just happened to be raised in a christian household, so you are a christian. If your parents had allowed you to draw your own conclusions about life you would be an atheist as well."

      Several things in error with this.
      First, Christians can come from atheistic parents.
      Second, Parents have children whom one turns out to be a Christian and the other an Atheist.
      Third, this assumes that a person raised in a particular situation will forever be under the influence of their parents.
      Fourth, it assumes that all religious people are in a lack of the capacity for serious intellectual discourse

      March 8, 2011 at 4:40 pm |
    • ???

      Atheism is a religious choice to believe (in the absence of evidence) that God does not exist. Like it or not, your assumption must be taken on faith along all other religious faiths. Some have tried to demand that the burden of proof be place on people who believe in God. I say why? The burden of proof should be upon any person making a claim. Only agnostics, by definition, are free from burden of proof.

      Now the evidence . . . now that is another discussion altogether. I find much more evidence that God does exist than does not.I firmly believe. And as for your claim about parents and upbringing and religious choice, I say you are certainly assuming a lot.

      March 8, 2011 at 5:11 pm |
    • Andrew

      If we have adequate explanations for the world we see around us, without having to jump to magic or miracles, then why do we still need to do so? Atheists don't need to prove anything other than what science has already provided evidence for, if you have an alternative theory, I hope you have actual evidence to back it up. Atheists are not making a claim, they are lacking an applicable claim. Also, if parents have no effect on a childs religious choice, why is it that, disregarding unhealthy relationships with parents and the like, it is more common for christian parents to have christian children and the same for any religion? The simple fact is that had you been raised by Muslims, or parents who revered ancient roman or African tribal gods with the same fervor as your parents embraced Christianity, you would not be a christian.

      March 8, 2011 at 5:36 pm |
    • Mao

      Andrew

      "If we have adequate explanations for the world we see around us, without having to jump to magic or miracles, then why do we still need to do so?"

      Because miracles and magic exists. Christians do not make the claim that science does not have a place, but we also have to account for the limitations of current scientific methods. As such Strong Atheists make the bold claim that there is not nor will there ever be evidence. From that perspective it is redundant and even deceiving for this type of Atheist to ask for evidence because even if there were it would be rejected a-priori.

      "Also, if parents have no effect on a childs religious choice,"

      This is totally misrepresenting the argument. It's not that a parent has no effect on a child's religious choice, but that a parent has complete control over a child's religious choice that is being proposed by your wording.
      So prove to me your theory is true in light of my friend who has turned to pagan gods while her parents are devout Christians and her brother is a Christian as well.

      March 8, 2011 at 6:28 pm |
  18. Ali

    Why is it always an issue between mankind on who believes and who doesn't? Why do we care? I love to read these comments and the arguments between everyone! I guess I live in a world where I don't ask people what they believe and they don't ask me. To each his own.

    March 8, 2011 at 4:06 pm |
    • Anotheralt

      Not having anything in particular to do with the article, but discussion of religious beliefs is useful. Even if you live in a world where no one asks you about your beliefs and you ask no one about theirs, their beliefs still affect you. People vote the way their priests or pastors do all the time without thinking about why...or worse, they think about why and make blanket assumptions and force religious beliefs on other people through laws and political officials.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
    • Ali

      You are correct. It is just a strange world we live in.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
    • mark balen

      as a good christian reborn in Christ ...u are bound by his love to share the word. .j .witnesses take it too far....that being said its not a good subject of conversation , usually leads to a fight

      March 8, 2011 at 4:56 pm |
  19. Madarain

    NO ONE HERE IS QUALIFIED!...to draw valid conclusions based on the facts, because the facts are simply beyond human capacity. A Simple example: Grabbing your phone or getting online to order a pizza for dinner seems pretty elementary, right?. But trying to explain it to your pet cat wont be very effective because your pet cat doesn't have the intellectual capicity to understand it. Not any part of it. Apply this same exercise to the Universe, Time space, or God and it should become obvious that if there is a God ( I believ there is) then he is so far above you that even if he loves you dearly, (like you love your cat) there is simply no way for you to process or understand his actions or more importantly his motives. Lashing out at Him because of your frailties makes about as much sense as a dog biting the hand that feeds it, which is no sense at all. Instead, why not take it on faith that your creator cares for you and will take care of you, Your only other option is to fight with Him in a battle you cant win over things you dont understand.

    March 8, 2011 at 3:56 pm |
    • Texas

      By your own logic you are not qualified to decide if god should be hated or not. You are not qualified to think he is good, so as a reasonable man you must be uncertain as to whether he is good or evil or possibly does not even exist.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
    • Bob

      I believe you said it yourself: We are unable to comprehend so we strain at the chains of our limited perception, which in almost every case with any creature is anger at not understanding. Humanity strives to understand everything, its in our nature. But we are also base creatures, creatures driven by emotions, and the easiest emotion for us to express is anger because it is such a simple emotion. Just as you talked about describing faith to a pet, its the same as trying to describe faith to another human. What you see as simple and obvious is not so simple to one that grew up differently, had different life experiences, or has been wronged and needs an outlet. If God is so loving and compassionate, as you describe Him, then He will also understand our anger, and it is not that we fight a battle we cannot win, we simply shout at the top of lungs at something that can't explain its motivations, and because of our lack of understanding, we are forgiven.

      At the same time, I stand by my requirement of concrete proof that God exists. At this point in my life, I wouldn't be surprised in the least that He does exist but has abandoned us because of our own incapacity to accept and love everyone for their differences.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:30 pm |
    • David Johnson

      @Madarain
      You said: "Apply this same exercise to the Universe, Time space, or God and it should become obvious that if there is a God ( I believ there is) then he is so far above you that even if he loves you dearly, (like you love your cat) there is simply no way for you to process or understand his actions or more importantly his motives."

      Hmmm... Well, let's see:

      It is said: "By your fruit you will be known."

      Let's look at your god's "fruit".

      God directly or at His insistence, murdered men, women and children including babies. This isn't evil? Is this good?

      God killed every living thing on the face of the earth other than Noah and his family, because man was wicked. Afterwards, He decides He won't kill everything again, because man's heart is evil from his youth. This isn't evil? Is this good?

      God had a man believe he was going to sacrifice his son to Him. Do you know how traumatic that would be for a father and his son?
      If you had the power would you do this? Would you be so insecure? This isn't evil? Is this good?

      There was a man who loved God. God made a bet with Satan that even if the man were tortured, his Possessions taken, and his children killed, he would still love God and never curse Him. God won the bet.
      Would you do that? Would you kill a man's children for a bet? This isn't evil? Is this good?

      God sent a bear to kill a group of children, because they had teased one of His prophets.
      Did the children deserve to die, because they teased a bald man? This isn't evil? Is this good?

      God allowed a man to sacrifice his daughter to Him, for giving the man a victory in battle. Human sacrifice! This isn't evil? Is this good?

      God created a place He can send people to be burned for all eternity. Could a god who is all good do this?
      If a puppy wet on the floor, would you hold it over a burner? Even for a second?

      I call Jesus, Himself as a witness! Would you tell me, that Jesus isn't able to judge evil?

      Jesus had this to say:
      Matthew 7:17 Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.
      Luke 6:43 "No good tree bears bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit.

      1. A god who is good, can't do bad things!
      This is established, by Jesus's testimony.

      2. The Christian god is guilty of horrid crimes against humans
      Evidenced by the atrocities recorded in the bible.

      3. Therefore, god is not good. He bears bad fruit.

      You said: "there is simply no way for you to process or understand his actions or more importantly his motives."

      Pfui! Read the examples of god's behavior again. Tell me in what reality or under what circ_umstances, these actions would not be evil? What could a god's motives be when He kills innocent babies?

      Your claim that humans just can't understand is bogus.

      By the way, I hate cats.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:37 pm |
    • Bubba

      I can understand a lot more than you think, kid. Maybe your head aches when you try to understand stuff, but how fourth-dimensional and complicated can it actually be:
      Dear God, this cancer really hurts, please cure me and save my life. You won't? Why not? Oh, it would change the value of Pi? Why would it do that?
      Dear God, my car is trapped in a snowbank and I'm freezing, can you send someone to help me? No? You'd miss LOST? Rent the frickin DVD, God, I'm dying here.
      "Bubba, this is your cat. I'm locked outside and I'm hungry. Let me in." Sorry cat, I don't care if you are hungry. I don't feel like helping you. To be plain, if God exists He could do better; either He's dead or indifferent. Saying "Well, fifteen hundred years ago He saved someone" just doesn't impress me.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:45 pm |
    • JWB

      Another option is to not believe in "god" as an anthropomorphized being (you call your god "him"), and simply embrace a beautiful reverence for the harmony and beauty as expressed in the creation of the universe and its laws.... and leave it at that?

      March 8, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
    • cchen326

      I agree with your post 100%. I believe the problem most people have is that we have so many different religions and even with Christianity itself has many different sects. Most people don't know where to go if they want to worship.

      The simple fact is humans cannot comprehend God and when people try to lash out against him like in what you posted it makes no logical sense. We can barely understand how our world works, but to lash out against an infinite creator that transcends the universe is ridiculous.

      We have scientists coming up the theories like M theory and multiple dimensions and multi verses, but to me they are all confirming that something beyond what we see is reality does exist.

      Even before the big bang the "theory" was that there was nothing no space, time and matter. Can a human even comprehend this?

      March 8, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
    • Normon

      @Madarain,
      So, based of the facts, your conclusion is that no one here is qualified to have a conclusion. Is that correct?

      I think you are making a few assumptions that aren't necessarily true. One assumption is that intelligence is a simple scalar spectrum on which you can place comparisons like, 'a cat is to you as you are to God' when there is no evidence of that being true. What if intelligence is a more step-level function on which we have reached the top in abilities but not capacity, so while we can't know everything at once, we are able to judge what we do know accurately.

      Another assumption, I think, is that a 'creator' God would need to vastly more intelligent than we are. What if there is a society outside of this reality that got together and started the big-bang? They wouldn't need to much more intelligent than we are individually and they wouldn't need to know the entire universe down to each quatum particle, just the general principles of creating a universe-singularity, or whatever they would call it.

      And finally, I think, you are assuming that creation equates to ownership, i.e. God created us and therefore has the right to do with us as we please, hence your (incredibly demeaning) cat comparison. I think that in an advanced ethics system, if one creates another sentient being, unlike an unthinking object, the creator cannot claim ownership of the created; that would equate to slavery. A loose but not exact analogy is that parent do not own their children and are expected raise independent people, not slaves.

      But, perhaps I'm wrong.

      March 8, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  20. Eli

    Why do many people pretend to know what God thinks in terms of why there is evil in the world?

    I keep hearing about how man sinned against God, introducing the world to evil. How do you know this? Why not beleive another life creating theory from another religion?

    March 8, 2011 at 3:54 pm |
    • Fuyuko

      People attribute so much to God that is unknowable.

      March 8, 2011 at 4:13 pm |
    • Mao

      Not enough evidence

      March 8, 2011 at 4:34 pm |
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About this blog

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