home
RSS
August 12th, 2011
12:10 PM ET

Bachmann faces theological question about submissive wives at debate

By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

(CNN)– Thursday night in the Fox News GOP debate in Ames, Iowa, Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minnesota, was asked by columnist Byron York whether she would be "submissive to her husband" if she were elected president.

Before the congresswoman had a chance to answer, a chorus of boos rang down from the audience.

"Thank you for that question, Byron," Bachmann responded with a wry smile. "Marcus and I will be married for 33 years this September 10. I'm in love with him. I'm so proud of him. What submission means to us, it means respect. I respect my husband. He's a wonderful godly man and great father.

"He respects me as his wife; that's how we operate our marriage," she continued. "We respect each other; we love each other. I've been so grateful we've been able to build a home together. We have wonderful children and 20 foster children. We've built a business and life together, and I'm very proud of him."

"She answered it the most appropriate way in the context it was being asked. She was being asked a deeply theological question in front of millions of Americans," said Gary Marx, the executive director of the Faith and Freedom Coalition. "That's why there was such a strong and visceral booing over the very premise of the question."

Marx, who was in the balcony at the debate Thursday, said that for Iowa evangelicals, this is a nonissue.

"Most evangelicals know it's not easy to teach in a 30-minute sermon on Sunday. It's impossible to answer in a minute sound bite. Her answer about respect is the only one that can be given," he said.

The question of wives being submissive to their husbands comes from a passage in the New Testament in Paul's letter to the Ephesians. The letter was originally written in Greek, and there are various translations of the Greek word Paul uses.

"Whatever someone thinks Paul means of submission of wives to husbands ... it doesn't leave any room for exploitation," said David Matthewson, an associate professor of New Testament at Denver Seminary. "I would say her response was very consistent with the text."

In the New International Version translation of the Bible, the version most preferred by evangelical Christians and nondenominational churches, a camp Bachmann has said she belongs to, Ephesians 5:22-24 are translated as:

"Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything."

The letter goes on to say in verse 25:

"Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her."

"The English word 'submit' is as good a translation as any without using a bunch of words. The problem, though, is the word 'submit' in English carries connotations for most readers that may not have been there in the Greek," Mathewson said. "In English, we think of forced submission or exploiting. ... I don't think that's in the Ephesians passage."

In the King James Version, the first mass-produced English translation of the Bible, the word is translated as "submit."

In Eugene Peterson's translation of the Bible, "The Message," which aims to use more common English, he translates submissive as "understand and support your husbands in ways that show your support for Christ."

Historically, the fifth chapter of Ephesians has been taken in context of Paul's writings to mean Christian spouses should operate as loving equals, though the word "submissive" has long been a divisive one for Christian women.

"It seems it's been, in the 20th century, to have caused a lot of issues in North American Christianity," Mathewson said.

Former Alaska Gov. Sara Palin, another prominent evangelical politician, weighed in on the issue Friday in Iowa.

Palin told CNN's Don Lemon, "That's her opinion, that, to her, submission to her husband means respecting her husband, and I respect my husband, too."

Lemon asked, "If (husband) Todd said don't run, would you not run?"

"I can't imagine my husband ever telling me what to do politically," Palin responded. "He has never told me what to do when it comes to a political step, and I appreciate that. I respect you for that, Todd; thank you."

Bachmann identifies herself as an evangelical Christian. Her congressional office said recently that she has been attending a nondenominational church as her schedule allows.

She has shown over the years that she is fluent in "Christianese," using words and phrases that ring true to evangelical listeners.

She has long been a darling of evangelical voters, serving as keynote speaker at anti-abortion events in Washington and making the rounds at prayer rallies at the Capitol. It is one of the reasons she is expected to do well in Iowa, where the GOP base is filled with evangelical voters.

Her faith has caused a few bumps in the road in the campaign. Her husband's Christian counseling program came under fire by critics for a controversial therapy. She formally pulled her membership in her former church days before she formally announced that she was seeking the White House.

But Marx points out that fielding a question like this in a debate only helps her. "In Iowa, it reiterates that evangelical identity she has."

And, he noted, the last Republican to win the Iowa caucus in 2008, former Southern Baptist preacher Mike Huckabee, got asked a lot of questions about the finer points of his faith, too.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Church and state • Michele Bachmann • Politics

soundoff (1,672 Responses)
  1. buckup

    Not clear on this.
    1) If husband has veto power over her, is "Michele Bachmann" running for president or is it "Mr & Mrs Bachmann" running as president, supreme commander of US forces on the ticket?
    2) Is this going to be like the wizard of Oz and he is in the background secretly calling the shots and she is providing the face & eyes?
    3) Do we have to pay both equal presidential wages, or do we get her at 60% of him?
    4) Do they both have to do the presidential oath, or is it sufficient he commands her to do it?
    5) if they install a 300 feet high permanent cross in the rose garden, is this paid for through National Endowment of Arts or the National Science Foundation?

    August 15, 2011 at 12:10 am |
    • Free

      Not that drastic, probably, but if 'hubby' doesn't like one of her decisions, what then?

      August 15, 2011 at 12:31 am |
  2. notanapologis

    This truly is the decline of the america...when someone with the destructive capability of Michele Bachman and her bizarre bible thinking can become president you really are doomed. You would have thought that the Tea Party's destruction of the US credit rating would have been enough but no....burn baby burn...

    August 15, 2011 at 12:08 am |
  3. Trent

    Ironically, the word "Islam" also translates as "Submission."

    August 15, 2011 at 12:06 am |
    • Bob

      Cool, you should get yourself a muslim wife. You will have cookies baked for you on demand.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:10 am |
  4. Heather

    So does she or doesn't she? We need to know if she follows her beliefs or is she just conveniently claiming things to get elected.

    August 15, 2011 at 12:06 am |
  5. Vicki

    I don't have a problem with Bachmann's answer and it is only the most strict religions that expect submission of women. Baptists and some fundamental churches talk this crap but women in America should not be challenged about submission to husbands. That is not what we American women expect in our lives. Other than that I really have no respect or good opinion of Bachmann who throws out hateful accusations that are always lies. She is the pitbull without shame for her lying and hateful behavior.

    August 15, 2011 at 12:03 am |
    • Jennifer

      The only religions that don't talk about wives submitting to their husbands are pagan or wica. I guess you have no religion? She should just submit like she is supposed to according to her proclaimed beliefs.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:09 am |
    • pepsee

      I wonder what kind od people race to be submissive! Don't people just think how idiotic it sounds? Pround to be submissive, duh!

      August 15, 2011 at 12:18 am |
  6. gwats

    Fine. If she so much into submission, let her 'submit' her resignation from the US House so we don't have to look at that squinty face again.

    August 15, 2011 at 12:00 am |
  7. Pastafarian

    Welcome to the United Theocracy of America. Thanks GOP and Teabaggers for bringing your ridiculous fairytales into our lives.

    August 14, 2011 at 11:57 pm |
    • Clyde

      You are starting to sound like a liberal or an Indian. You believe in the monkey god?

      August 15, 2011 at 12:01 am |
    • Pastafarian

      I am neither a liberal nor an Indian (Native American or from India). I believe in critical thinking and whatever is supported by science, data, and facts. I do not believe there is anyplace in our government for religion, and certainly not for faith-based rule. I do not believe in any of those ridiculous stories and will never accept any of it for anything more than it is: a way to control the weak-minded through fear.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:06 am |
    • Krejaton

      Interesting.

      I always thought you libtards were all about tolerance and acceptance. Perhaps that is only second to "rampant hypocrisy".

      August 15, 2011 at 12:06 am |
    • Pastafarian

      krej: so typical of a teabagger to ignore the very clear statement "I am not a liberal" and just go on with your reply as if I never said it. I am not defined by anby political lean. I vote the issues and against any politician who will EVER try to bring their dumb religion into my life. There isn't a shred of hypocrisy, so go kcuf yourself.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:11 am |
    • Clyde

      Pastafarian

      Still think you are from India. Anyway, Rick Perry will give her a run for her money in the religious arena

      August 15, 2011 at 12:16 am |
    • Pastafarian

      Clyde: why on earth would you think I'm from India? I can assure you that I live in the US., and am not in any way Indian or of Indian decent.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:20 am |
    • pepsee

      Krej: It's not a question of being liberal or not. There are many liberals who also believe in fairies too. Only weak minded people want to believe in some invisible thing. Then they squabble over whose invisible fairy is better and thus life goes on.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:27 am |
  8. George

    The Bible was written thousands of years ago. At the time, people thought the earth was flat. People thought that the earth was the center of the universe. The Bible also says that if a woman is not a virgin at the time of her marriage, she shall be executed. The Bible should not be interpreted literally. It's a book that should point you in the right direction. People who try to follow the Bible word for word are completely ignorant and mislead. The Bible was revised countless number of times. by romans alone. They left out some books and changed parts to justify their wrongdoings. Nobody knows what the original Bible said, thus nobody should take the modern Bible as a 100% guide to their lives.

    August 14, 2011 at 11:57 pm |
    • Pastafarian

      Just a bunch of BS to rule and control the masses through guilt and fear of some unseen nasty allegedly omnipotent being. These nutbags scare the cr@p outta me.

      August 14, 2011 at 11:59 pm |
    • Mindy

      George, you have noone to submit to you? How empty your life must be....

      August 14, 2011 at 11:59 pm |
    • pepsee

      Here is a slave – Mindy that is.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:14 am |
  9. Glenn

    I submit as a choice to whom I wish (my spouse, for example). If I cannot choose, then I am being subjected. This is the difference between Christian relationships (as I am in) and religious terrorism in the name of conquering. I believe Bachmann will defend our country against foreign subjugation by religion because she understands the difference.

    August 14, 2011 at 11:54 pm |
    • Vicki

      That is doubtful since the woman is an idiot and has a record as a liar. She was one of the most terrible during this GOP created debt limit stunt when Bachmann led the tea party republicans not to vote for increasing the debt limit and and causing this country to for the first time ever default. So she was guilty as they all were for being unreasonable. Republicans caused our rating downgrade by their talk of how it would be no problem for the country to default. That is heracy, unpatriotic and downright wrong that these republicans compromised our government in that way. They have caused great harm to the economy.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:12 am |
    • Free

      Is Paul offering a choice when he instructs wives to submit to their husbands?

      August 15, 2011 at 12:14 am |
  10. Dana

    Merriam-Webster says: SUBMIT:
    1.(a) to yield oneself to the authority or will of another : surrender (b) to permit oneself to be subjected to something
    2. : to defer to or consent to abide by the opinion or authority of another

    The word "submissive" describes an unbalanced relationship - the only thing mutual is an agreement that one person is at a lower position than the other. If it meant "mutual respect", then her husband could say he is also submissive to his wife. I doubt it. As a woman, I believe only an ignorant, weak-minded women would describe herself as "submissive". It offends me that such a woman can be taken seriously.

    August 14, 2011 at 11:52 pm |
    • Mindy

      Dana, just submit. You will feel so much better. Do you have mullet?

      August 14, 2011 at 11:57 pm |
    • Krejaton

      You are a fool if you cannot understand that language is set in concrete. Words fluctuate over time–hence the need for dictionaries to be published every year.

      In addition, the article deftly forgets to mention the verse before the one in question: "Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ." That is the focus of the entire passage–that Christians in community submit to one another rather than flaunt their power and pride over one another.

      But I guess it is simply easier to jump to conclusions and degrade someone instead of seeking to truly understand. Ignorance is bliss, huh?

      August 15, 2011 at 12:04 am |
    • pepsee

      Dana, you just said exactly what I have been saying. It is a shame that somebody like her may hold the top office in the country (hope not.) Her influence on the women/girls will be a step back in time. Although I think she is a hypocrite and in reality her husband is the submissive one. She must have conveniently forgotten the meaning of "sumissive."

      August 15, 2011 at 12:06 am |
    • pepsee

      Mindy, you can be as submissive as you want even if your husband imprisons you, you may get a kick out of it but please don't ask others to do that. Misery loves company, I suppose. Maybe you should try moveing to Iran, Soudi Arabia or Afghanistan. There you can be submissive at your hearts content.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:11 am |
    • Free

      Do we really need a Commander-in-Chief who is used to surrendering?

      August 15, 2011 at 12:11 am |
    • Pastafarian

      krej: why would i waste my reverance on some dead zombie? that's just stupid.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:17 am |
  11. steve19

    Christianity was the main driving force behind the establishment of western culture. This is especially true of the United States (We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator...). Almost all of the founders were Christians, even some of the least religious were bellievers in some form (Jefferson, Franklin). They put their llives on the line when they signed on in agreement to what Jefferson wrote. This was not some stupid, knee-jerk decision on their part. They were extremely well-read and very deep thinkers. When you do some research, you can easily find that our country has been steeped in religious thought from the beginning. George Washington said " Of all of the dispositions and habits that lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensible supports." Everyone realizes the founders and society were not perfect, (slavery women's rights, etc.) but these problems had existed for centuries and the founders laid the foundation for the most free and prosperous society that history has ever known. Christianity also supports the idea of "liberty of conscience", a key component of our country. You can believe what you choose, and in the 1700's this was a pretty revolutionary concept. Surveys show that most people in the United States today believe in God, and the vast majority of them are Christians. Most of our presidents have been believers (including our current one), and as is typical, many of our candidates this year are people of faith as well. I think we make a mistake when we dismiss people because of their belief or non-belief. I think we are wiser to focus on how effective we think their policies would be.

    August 14, 2011 at 11:52 pm |
    • Blin

      Whatever. Women shouldn't be running for anything. They are incapable of being rational and reasonable about anything. Then add in that she gets PMS and migraines coupled crazy ides and we have a recipe for disaster.

      August 14, 2011 at 11:55 pm |
    • helloeyes

      Your second-last sentence just obliterated the entire premise. If we should not worry about what their religious beliefs are, why the lengthy post about the Christian founding fathers?

      August 14, 2011 at 11:57 pm |
    • Free

      Blin
      Well, if an inability to be rational disqualifies a person from being president then wouldn't her religious beliefs knock her out of the running too?

      Besides, men tend to let their 'other head' sometimes do their thinking for them in a very irrational way as well, or don't you remember Monica's blue dress?

      August 15, 2011 at 12:09 am |
    • Chopteeth

      Yeah I'\m sure the Enlightenment had nothing to do with that, it was all the forward-thinking tenants of Christianity that are responsible for the modern American state... keep dreaming, or should I say praying. And for supposedly having "liberty of conscience," the morality derived from your religion is surprisingly draconian and inflexible.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:13 am |
    • steve19

      I did not say that we should not be concerned about someone's religious beliefs or lack thereof. It can certainly be enlightening, a clue to how they would govern. In general, I would say that Christian principles have elevated our society whether they have been codified into law or simply become customs. But I don't think that someone will automatically be a great public servant simply because they profess Christianity (or they don't). Like any other job, there are certain qualities and skills that a candidate needs to possess.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:29 am |
    • Free

      steve19
      "Christian principles"? Do they include Catholic principles and Mormon principles as well? How about some pacifist Christian principles, or socialist ones? Naw, I think many would only accept fundamentalist ideas of Christian principles, right?

      August 15, 2011 at 12:37 am |
    • steve19

      INo. In our free society, all of the things you listed are open to debate, as they should be.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:52 am |
  12. helloeyes

    She's so fake anyway – she's telling crowds of followers that she does NOT want the government to be involved at all, and then asks for government funding. She's a two-faced liar; saying one thing while doing another.

    August 14, 2011 at 11:47 pm |
    • TexasForever

      Don't worry. Rick Perry will straighten her out. Before all this is over, she'll have her apron on baking cookies for the guys.

      August 14, 2011 at 11:51 pm |
  13. John

    Michele Bachman needs a boob job before she gets any of my attention. That woman is flat as an ironing board. Think she has ever done any house chores ?

    August 14, 2011 at 11:47 pm |
  14. RickRam

    I'm finding it difficult to believe that we live in a day and age when anyone who believes in the absurdity of the Bible actually runs for the office of leader of the United States. Has the USA gone completely nuts? This woman is delusional.

    August 14, 2011 at 11:47 pm |
    • helloeyes

      *like*

      August 14, 2011 at 11:48 pm |
    • Tina

      The bible isn't absurd! She just needs to submit like she is supposed to, then we wouldn't be getting these women running for anything.

      August 14, 2011 at 11:49 pm |
    • in you

      rick rick ram ram, we believe in you, you are the last hope for all of mankind.

      please save us, please save us!!!

      August 14, 2011 at 11:51 pm |
    • nah

      you rickram are one big delusional nut for making that statement.

      August 14, 2011 at 11:55 pm |
    • Les

      Right on , Rick. The fact that this woman is a religious right nut case terrorist should be a lose, lose situation. She failed to answer the question like a GOO Xtian should. Yes. It was that simple. I wonder if she realizes that the Bible says women should keep silent in the churches and that women should no teach men? It is time to get the Xtians out of office for good and replace them with Earth centered spiritual folks. Its the only way to put an end to the millions murdered in the name of their angry sky god. Any candidate that publicly declares they are Xtian always receives a NO vote at the booth.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:08 am |
    • DP

      So are you saying Obama should not run either? He goes to church and believes in the Bible.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:12 am |
  15. Bubba

    Saw her tonight on Fox News. She is a crazed lunatic that even the Fox News thought she was crazy and essentially blamed her for the AAA downgrade. The S&P specifically mentioned that it was the rhetoric about not raising the debt ceiling and possible default as a matter of conviction by "leaders" (ie, Bachman) in government that caused them downgrade.

    August 14, 2011 at 11:44 pm |
  16. helloeyes

    Her husband is totally in the closet anyway so I'm sure she's the dominant one. Typical politician skirting around the subject. I agree with those who say we should not let the religious rule this country. We need a common sense ruler who can start the process of dividing church and state and break away from religion and religious topics altogether.

    August 14, 2011 at 11:43 pm |
    • Free

      We don't need any ruler, not even a heavenly one, only a confident, duly-elected leader.

      August 14, 2011 at 11:58 pm |
  17. huxley

    This is going to be the most hilarious Presidential campaign EVER.

    Thank you Michele Bachmann. You clearly appreciate whats important to Americans – to be entertained.

    August 14, 2011 at 11:43 pm |
  18. Dora

    The bible says " women submit to your husband". It is very clear and not open to interpretation just to meet your own wants. If you are christian, then you follow what the bible says. If you are a hypocrit, then you pick and choose what to believe in. She needs to submit to her hubby if that what she claims to believe in. Personally, I think this woman is a fraud and a hypocrit.

    August 14, 2011 at 11:39 pm |
    • VegasRage

      What I don't want my wife to be submissive? hmmm?

      August 14, 2011 at 11:41 pm |
    • Spiffy

      Well then you aren't a Christian because you don't follow the bible.

      August 14, 2011 at 11:43 pm |
  19. Beadles

    Fair question. She is on the record as stating she is a submissive wife. She pursued a tax law degree because her husband TOLD her to, not because they jointly decided it was a good thing to do. She did it even though she absolutely did not want to. This was a decision affecting her professional life – not the personal relationship between her and Mr. Bachmann. We, the American people, have the right to know if she will base decisions affecting this country based on her convictions or the dictates of her husband. John Kennedy was asked about his ability to make decisions contrary to the desires of the pope – once again – a question of allegiance. There is plenty of gender bias and inequality in this country w/o manufacturing it.

    August 14, 2011 at 11:39 pm |
    • Free

      From their past history then what is to say that a president Bachmann doesn't really want this office, but is just trying to please her husband, or won't quit mid-term if he finds it too much of a strain on their relationship?

      August 14, 2011 at 11:54 pm |
  20. steve

    anyone so guided by myths like religion should be automatically disqualified from leadership roles in any society.

    August 14, 2011 at 11:36 pm |
    • really?!

      That was a very thoughful statement...what do you believe?

      August 14, 2011 at 11:40 pm |
    • now that

      qualifies you steve to be the chosen leader and pour out your blessing and bestow upon these lowly creatures the abundance of economic surplus!!!!

      August 14, 2011 at 11:43 pm |
    • VegasRage

      @really?! I believe anyone needs to inculcate themselves in a 2000 year old book for what believe doesn't thin for themselves very well.

      August 14, 2011 at 11:43 pm |
    • RickRam

      I agree 100%.

      August 14, 2011 at 11:44 pm |
    • helloeyes

      we will never evolve as a society as long as we cling to religions, and their rules and regulations.

      August 14, 2011 at 11:45 pm |
    • Sciguy

      How about those guided by the myth called evolution?

      August 14, 2011 at 11:45 pm |
    • Spiffy

      Really Sciguy? Did you not pass biology in HS? How could you possibly call evolution a myth?

      August 14, 2011 at 11:47 pm |
    • helloeyes

      It's just a knee-jerk reaction: "you don't believe in religion? Well *I* don't believe in evolution ! so there!"

      August 14, 2011 at 11:50 pm |
    • Sciguy

      Spiffy, the theory is so full of holes and "just-so" stories to be worthy of no better tag. Google fred reed and evolution for a taste of how the true believers (in evolution, that is) handle honest questions tossed their way. Fred reed btw is no friend of creationism or Christianity, just a thoughtful guy with legit questions.

      August 14, 2011 at 11:51 pm |
    • Sciguy

      Btw spiffy, after passing hs biology, I went on to get BS and MS in elec engr, and an MS in math, and am now working on math PhD.

      August 14, 2011 at 11:55 pm |
    • really?!

      there you go again spiffy...where in your science class has Evolution been proven...Even Scietists on here agree...they just keep coming back to :there's evidence...lol ask yourself...if we eveloved from apes....was it by reproduction...and why is that component in our DNA missing with everything else besides other humans.....or do you just think that we are going to suddenly morf into another species in a few years

      August 14, 2011 at 11:56 pm |
    • pepsee

      Steve, you are right but unfortunately most of the people in the world feel helpless if they don't believe in some imaginary being. It is strange how some seriously intelligent people also have a malfunctioning part of their brain and think illogically. For a lot of people world will always remain flat.

      August 14, 2011 at 11:57 pm |
    • Sciguy

      Pepsee, actually most people are uncomfy disbelieving whatever they perceive the majority to believe. I doubt that either you or Steve could stand up to me in a debate on evolution vs creation, but you both smugly take comfort that a majority of scientists support your undependable (by you) position. Who is the more helpless? You and Steve I'm afraid.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:06 am |
    • Spiffy

      @Sciguy care to actually point out the "holes" or are you just going to point me to a source? Can you actually defend your statement? Btw I don't really care what you claim to be doing. Welcome to the internet where the self proclaimed HS QB is a lowly nerd in real life.

      @really?! I never claimed evolution to be complete fact. Some parts have been proven while others are stilling missing evidence. But that is the beauty of science. It is constantly changing as new evidence is taken in. I do not say we evolved from apes because if you were to say then you would be completely wrong. We do share a common ancestor with apes though. Evolution occurs for many reasons but what it really comes down to is survival of the fittest. The other option then evolution is of course is creationism which the huge majority of scientists reject.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:13 am |
    • Stevie19

      To those that actually believe that evolution is wrong – do you just not buy into the scientific method, or do you think that there's a centruy+ long, global conspiracy involving many tens of thousands of scientists – most who have never met each other or speak the same language – all just to discredit creationism. Oh yeah, and Fred Reed, who has absolutely zilch in the way of scientific training, has figured this all out. Where's an eye-roll emoticon when you need one?

      And Sciguy, I totally don't buy your math and engineering background. You would otherwise know that gravity also has the 'tag' of a theory, and so that old, worn out line of "evolution is only a THEORY" is only trotted out by people not smart enough to know better. Try again.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:14 am |
    • Tom

      Right, helpless compared to a mythical piece of literature, tell me do the voices in your head help out in your form of reasoning?

      August 15, 2011 at 12:18 am |
    • Sciguy

      Spiffy, I couldn't care less whether you believe my credentials; YOU brought up the credential of passing hs biology, I merely extended that to show you I far exceed your mild supposed requirement to refute disbelief in the myth called evolution.

      Stevie, you apparently misread my tag comment; it had nothing to do with "theory," but was in reference to "myth." As to your disbelief of my claimed degrees, I know it disturbs your magical world that a bona fide engineer/scientist repudiates your deeply-cherished myths, but in this case it's all true!

      August 15, 2011 at 12:26 am |
    • Spiffy

      @Sciguy you don't seem to get my point that I don't care what you have accomplished. If you believe something as stupid as creationism then you are an idiot in my book.

      Anyway do you ever plan on showing all these holes in evolution or is your internet not running Google quick enough.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:30 am |
    • Sciguy

      Stevie, the funny thing is you're almost rightv bout Fred reed. He actually knows a little about science, having at some point studied chemistry. But that is just the point, and thank you for making it. He is NOT a scientist, and definitely not a creationist or even Christian. He merely is a thinking man who is a journalist and has dared several times in his life to ask legit questions about the holes in evolutionary theory. But as you can see if you will read his articles, he is consistently treated with contempt for daring to even ask the questions. This is the behavior of true believers, not scientists. And it is quite revealing about the strength of their myths masquerading as science.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:36 am |
    • Stevie7

      Sciguy, I don't have deeply cherished myths. I have an understanding of the scientific method that you claim to have studied (skip class a lot?), and I've done plenty of my own reading an investigation. I happen to fall in line with th VAST MAJORITY of published, peer-reviewed evolutionary biologists on the matter. And you have ... nothing, from what you've told us so far. Maybe just a tin foil that that's screwed on a wee bit too tight.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:39 am |
    • really?!

      spiffy...what part of HUMAN Evolution do you say has been proven??? do you really believe that millions of people are wrong compared to a handful of tunnel vision ego maniancs

      August 15, 2011 at 12:41 am |
    • Sciguy

      Spiffy, you seem unable to grasp the simple fact that you raised the credential issue, and I merely responded to it. The fact that you aren't comfy with the response is immaterial. If you believe something as ridiculous as evolution, you are a lemming in my book, following the masses who couldn't support it if their life depended on it, together with the high priests of the religion called evolution who merely dismiss as heretic anyone who questions them.

      Fred has done a fine job highlighting some of the glaring holes in the myth in his articles...peruse them at your leisure. I'll devastate you another day when it's not nearly 1 a.m. My employer, who does value my credentials, won't be pleased if I sleep till noon tomorrow!

      August 15, 2011 at 12:45 am |
    • Spiffy

      It has been proven that we evolved from a common ancestor of apes. I could go into more but I don't really want to because a. I'm tired and b. I'm lazy.

      Also care to clarify what you mean by "do you really believe that millions of people are wrong compared to a handful of tunnel vision ego maniancs" because that can be applied to many things.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:49 am |
    • Sciguy

      Stevie7, way to pile up the fallacious arguments - appeal to authority and ad hominem in one short post. Typical of those of your persuasion.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:49 am |
    • really?!

      spiffy...you told me earlier that if i thought we evolve from apes that i would be completely wrong and now you;re saying that we did and it has been proven???? and I believe the word you';re looking for is ouranopithecus, but again that is a THEORY.. nothing has been proven go to bed

      August 15, 2011 at 12:56 am |
    • Q

      For the record, evolution is both a fact (i.e. a change in allelic frequency in a population over time) and a scientific theory which employs the fact of evolution along with physical evidence from every relevant discipline to explain extant and extinct biodiversity.

      @really?! – Please go read a little bit about speciation, how it happens and what follows. As you suggested, it does involve constraints on the ability of subpopulations of a species to interbreed/share genes. It's actually been observed in every major class of life, from microbes to mammals. Again, proof does not apply to science, only formal logic and mathematics. Science deals in evidence, probability and predictive value. The evidence for human evolution is again, first, the well recorded hominid and pre-homind fossil record demonstrating overlapping and progressive change within the discrete forms and second, the genetic evidence indicating phylogenetic concordant gene distributions and the presence of vestigial genes like our defunct gene for egg yolk production.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:59 am |
    • Spiffy

      @Sciguy You have yet to actually present your own argument. Instead you tell me to look here or there. You are the one claiming that evolutionists can't defend their own argument yet you seem to not be able to do it yourself. Your only argument has been "look at this". Which I have but refuse to address because you haven't said it yourself. You say "couldn't support it if their life depended on it," but yet it seems like you couldn't do the same concerning your argument. Your hypocrisy is amazing.

      Yes I raised the point of credentials but you are the one who has said you have high credentials but seem unable to use them in your argument. That leads me to believe you are lying because an intelligent person would actually be able to defend their position.

      Have fun at work. Good thing I have summer vacation.

      August 15, 2011 at 1:00 am |
    • Q

      @SciGuy – Please cross-reference Fred Reed's "holes" against the TalkOrigins archive of creationist claims. You'll find they're pretty much all there. His arguments are simple arguments of incredulity founded in scientific ignorance. That you accept these arguments as worthy only betrays that you lack the intellectual curiosity to investigate the response from the actual scientists working in the field.

      August 15, 2011 at 1:02 am |
    • really?!

      speciation? are you kidding me...lol speciation exists but still is a theory in terms of humans....anything else

      August 15, 2011 at 1:04 am |
    • Spiffy

      @really?! I never changed my story. We did not evolve from apes. I never said we did and never will because it is false. What I have said is that we share a common ancestor with apes (which is true of every organism if you go back far enough). Your horrible grammar and reading skills seem to have betrayed you. You are the one who should "go to bed".

      August 15, 2011 at 1:05 am |
    • really?!

      OMG spiffy...tell me you're not a teacher.... this is why private schools are the way to go

      August 15, 2011 at 1:08 am |
    • Q

      @really?! – Correct. A scientific theory supported by the homind and pre-homind fossil record and the genes in your own genome. Just another scientific theory like atomic theory, gravitational theory, the germ theory of disease, etc, etc. I understand this all a little complex for a finance guy, so let me ask a simple question, you accept speciation but apparently don't accept it for humans (which function with the exact same molecular machinery). What in your opinion, is the reason that humans are immune to the mechanisms which produce speciation?

      August 15, 2011 at 1:08 am |
    • really?!

      will someone tell me what we evolved from and how? was it reproduction or what?

      August 15, 2011 at 1:12 am |
    • really?!

      give me one scientific article that proves HUMAN speciation...anyone.....and my financial mind is having trouble grasping the THEORY or HUMAN Evolution but not money

      August 15, 2011 at 1:15 am |
    • fred

      Q
      Spiffy
      What I find so interesting is you both are so scientific and logical yet I see comments from you that attack the Bible for something said 4000 years ago as if it was said today. Why do you do that and how does that seem at all logical ? People have changed, culture has changed, war strategy has changed, etc.

      August 15, 2011 at 1:16 am |
    • Q

      @really?! – I've already told you what the science says here, e.g. from H. erectus, H. heidelbergensis or some earlier or yet undiscovered pre-modern human hominid and it would have occurred initially with a speciation event with subsequent divergence and adaptation.

      Again, given that speciation demonstrably occurs and is observable in real time, why are humans immune to the process despite sharing the same basic molecular machinery?

      August 15, 2011 at 1:16 am |
    • Spiffy

      I am not a teacher. I am a student at a private Catholic high school.

      In response to your newest comment: I will not tell you how evolution works. I am not here to teach creationists what they should have learned already.

      August 15, 2011 at 1:16 am |
    • Q

      @Fred – Please go ahead and defend the slaughter of Amalekite children and infants again...

      August 15, 2011 at 1:17 am |
    • Spiffy

      @fred: Isn't it obvious? Because people still believe that stuff and take it as fact.

      August 15, 2011 at 1:18 am |
    • really?!

      Q... I;m still waiting on the scientific article....and please don't deflect my question with a question...
      Spiffy...I can see now why you are the way you are....the traditional rebelous catholic school girl

      August 15, 2011 at 1:22 am |
    • fred

      Q,
      God would not ask me to harm infants and to the contrary has given me the heart and resources to provide for those who cannot provide for themselves. We spoke previously how God hardened Pharaohs heart in the last 5 plagues to show His power to all believers and nonbelievers alike. Prior to that Pharaohs heart was already hard and filled with pride thinking himself a god. I do not recall any time when God took a good heart and made it bad. Mostly, God takes bad hearts and makes them better.
      Amalekites were bad and were the ones that blocked Israelites from the promised land attacked them for no stated reason and will continue to do so as long as they live. Now, this whole story could be an allegory related to evil attacking good or hindering Gods will for His people or God will ruthlessly carryout judgment on those who are not His chosen, etc. There are many ways to come at this but it boils down to who is this God of the Bible. We can this same argument when we try and wrestle with the sins of the father being passed down to the son and grandsons.
      I like your statement we cannot know mind of deity anymore than mind of a human. The God of the Bible agrees with you and steps it up a couple notches making it clear the creation cannot know the mind of the creator or even conceive it. For this reason God works with people where they are in their development. Just as evolution takes generations so to the evolution of mans understanding of the God. These early periods 4,000 years ago with nomads living in the desert water and fire were big events and giants were out there. A different people who would have laughed at Jesus washing feet and saying turn the other cheek. God was bigger, in the sky, shook the ground, in the fire and made rain etc. 2,000 years latter civilization had ready water, controlled fire and had an organized empire allowing for God to now show himself in the form of man because the time was right. The next step in evolution was spirit and Jesus said I must go but I will send the Spirit that will guide you in all truth.
      Murder also changed from Exodus to where Jesus said if you hate a man you have committed murder in your heart. Adultery changed from Exodus also from the physical to “if your eye lusts you have committed adultery. From the killing of infants to “if anyone harms these little ones it would be better he was never born”

      August 15, 2011 at 1:23 am |
    • fred

      Spiffy
      Comon now, you don't really beleive Christians still go around slaughtering infants

      August 15, 2011 at 1:25 am |
    • fred

      I actually, do not know of any Christians that do not believe in evolution. The issue taken is one of penning down when cognative man arose based upon brain size. Those answers will play themselves out over time as we learn more. As to the Bible evolution matters not.

      August 15, 2011 at 1:32 am |
    • Spiffy

      @really?! I am a boy and no I did not become an Atheist out of rebellion but out of learning in great depth about Catholicism and other religions. What I find funny is that in most cases Atheists know more about religion then the religious. My knowledge of religion is what drove me away from it.

      @fred I will ignore your very large post because it didn't bring anything new to the conversation and was basically religious BS.

      As to your second statement. Sure I believe Christians still kill infants. The vast majority of child killers in the U.S are Christians.

      August 15, 2011 at 1:33 am |
    • Q

      @really?! – It's not a deflection, it's an attempt to clarify your question. Again, if speciation occurs, what would prevent it from occurring in humans as it does in all other classes of life?

      Again, I can't give you 10 yrs of undergrad and grad education. With all due respect, any paper I'd reference would frankly be over your head given you lack the requisite supporting background. Nonetheless, here's a resource you could begin reading:
      http://humanorigins.si.edu/

      From there head to PubMed and start searching for articles. Here's one you can start with:
      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21390129

      August 15, 2011 at 1:34 am |
    • Spiffy

      @fred: I know of plenty of Christians who don't believe in evolution. And when you argue evolution they simply ignore the facts and tell you that you are going to hell.

      August 15, 2011 at 1:35 am |
    • fred

      Spiffy
      You sail "Sure I believe Christians still kill infants. The vast majority of child killers in the U.S are Christians" In the US how about 50 million abortions since roe in 1973? Oh, so you wll then argue they are not infants. In the process you will see you are the one who has not evolved. As a matter of fact you are taking the same stale positions taken by Baal worshipers in 1443 BC. Get real and figure out why you really hate God, why you must turn evolution into an anti Bible tool when in fact it is simply todays scientific theoryof evolution that wil certainly change again shortly. The only thing that does not change is your bias.

      August 15, 2011 at 1:42 am |
    • really?!

      So I guess in short...you guys believe in Evolution because religion has been forced upon you so you began to read the Bible, then began to read things that don't make alot of sence so you began to question...no one gave answers that you wanted. Then you heard about evolution and said "these scientists would never lie to us.. they even have "evidence " that evolution exists....butterflies do it, why can't humans... then came apes....they look like us and chimps have 95 to 98% of the same DNA (not reproductive) then you said, so lets conect the dots from apes going backward for thousands of years...hence human evolution

      August 15, 2011 at 1:42 am |
    • Q

      @Fred – While this is weaker than your previous miltary/collateral damage defense, it still neglects a few major points. The deity of the OT demanded the slaughter of children and infants. This can't be defended by cultural/historical relativism. It can't be defended by "mysterious ways" anymore than you would acquit a confessed child killer because you didn't know their true motivations. Whether you like it or not, you are tasked with making a moral judgment here but you chose to ignore or it or dismiss it. Again, the deity of the OT, who is repeatedly referenced and/or is directly incarnate in the NT, demanded the slaughter of children and infants. At the very least, you're confirming the biblical deity is capriciously schizophrenic. At worst, you accept that child and infant murder is morally acceptable so long as it's ordered by a perceived superior.

      Killing children and infants is simply wrong, always has been and always will be. If you can't concede this, then there's no point in further hijacking this particular thread. I have no interest in a deity who actively with floods, plagues, etc kills children and infants or vicariously does so with Israelite soldiers. You are clearly free to worship whatever you want, but please spare me further attempts to defend child and infant murder for the sake of preserving your own theology which directly endorses the practice.

      August 15, 2011 at 1:46 am |
    • really?!

      Q...nice try...What I'm reading is full of words and phrases such as unknown, likely to produce, or may be, ...all this is cute...but you still can't produce what i ask for because it doesn't exist. Just as you say religion is false because God doesn't exist..because there is not evidence of the existance of a God....Really?!

      August 15, 2011 at 1:51 am |
    • fred

      Really?!

      They always do that, connect the dots then reconnect the dots. The Bible says “these women are always studying but are never able to arrive at a full knowledge of the truth"

      August 15, 2011 at 1:52 am |
    • really?!

      so true Fred...

      August 15, 2011 at 1:55 am |
    • Q

      @really?! – I accept the evidence of evolution. I've personally seen it in action in the lab and in the field. But more importantly, you could actually go to your local research university of natural history museum and directly observe the evidence for yourself. But it's clear you're not interested. Your questions have been asked and answered and when asked for clarification, you evade.

      The evidence for evolution is independent of one's take on the bible (for non-literalists) and there are countless faithful who accept the science, e.g. Francis Collins, NIH Director. Some believe evolution is the creation mechanism, e.g. Theistic Evolutionists. Your parenthetical "(not reproductive)" again betrays, you're either incapable or unwilling to explore the questions you've asked...

      August 15, 2011 at 1:57 am |
    • Spiffy

      @fred: Are you really going to bring abortion into this debate? I say the abortion should be the right of every woman. What I do not agree with is abortions during or after the third trimester. At this point the fetus is able to think, reason, use motor skils, and breath. All these skills are what you usually consider in a person. A fetus before the third trimester is not a person and is simply a ball of cells that would be as ethical as killing a bacteria.

      I don't hate God. How can I hate something that does not exist? I became an Atheist for reasons explained earlier but if you would like for me to sum it up for you it simply came down to thinking about it. Sure evolution will change. Science is constantly changing as we learn new things. I do not use evolution as a tool against the bible. I use it as a tool against creationism. The entire bible is not dedicated to creationism so I would not consider evolution as being anti-bible. I have no bias. What I have is reason, logic, experience, knowledge and a willingness to learn.

      @really?! I believe in Evolution because it is logical and has been proven on many levels. My belief in evolution had nothing to do with me becoming an Atheist. In fact I became an Atheist before I even studied evolution. I never really read the bible (while I was Catholic) except for handpicked quotes during my religion classes. What I learned from my teachers is what made me question my belief, the beliefs of others and the existence of God. So after learning so much about religion I decided to learn about the opposite of it. Atheism as it turned out was more logical. I came about Atheism through study not through some hate for religion or God. Good job assuming you know me when you actually do not.

      August 15, 2011 at 1:59 am |
    • Q

      @really?! – Clearly you didn't read the PubMed article or the cited work from the SI site. What I can't produce is a graduate level education for you in evolutionary biology when you can't define why speciation exists in all other classes of life, but somehow, magically, not in humans...

      August 15, 2011 at 2:00 am |
    • fred

      Q,
      Just like the tale of evolution you love to follow a single branch of the tree till it has no leaves. If what I am hearing is you like scientific analysis then at least apply a bit of disapline to your attack on God. I will get into the cosmos of it latter but as for now stay focused on the infant Amalekites. You do not know and you cannot say what would have become of those Amalekites. You do not know nor can you say what would have happened if Stalin were never born or killed as an infant. You do not know nor can you say what would have happened if just one of the 50 milion aborted had been alowed to live. This statement in the bible regarding Amalekites can mean so many things that neither you nor I can say what it really means or why the order was given, if it was symbolic. What we do know is they did not follow the instructions so you and I could be arguing over something that did not happen. Point being, you take a hard run against God for it when you really don't know.

      August 15, 2011 at 2:03 am |
    • Q

      @Fred – I'm not "connecting dots", I'm referencing a passage in context directly from the "inspired word of god" which demands the slaughter of children and infants. It's you who wants to frame this in some multi-millenial cultural relativism to rescue the son from the deeds of the father (who are of course one in the same).

      August 15, 2011 at 2:04 am |
    • really?!

      but you;re the one talking about speciation, but can't produce squat on it's existance in humans...I'm sure you've seen DNA manipulation but in no way have you have any proof your so called human speciation has ever happened.

      August 15, 2011 at 2:06 am |
    • fred

      Q
      As to evolution I do not think you have a fix on just when or which humanoid had full awareness as we know it today. That spark, that unique difference that makes humans above say Neanderthal is what the Bible could have referred to as the image of God which the creator breathed into man. Are you not puzzled as to why God hides himself, why you can never trap Him with science or find Him out by science……..simply there is only one way to God. So keep on looking you will not find it through science.

      August 15, 2011 at 2:09 am |
    • Spiffy

      As it is 2 AM here in New York I will be going to bed. I will return to this page (page 25) tomorrow to see if anyone responds to my posts. Until then good night.

      August 15, 2011 at 2:10 am |
    • Q

      @Fred – I don't need to know what would happen. Murdering children and infants is wrong. Your argument first dismisses free will in inferring these children had no choice but to become like their parents. Then you quickly shift to an "allegory" defense despite Saul's rebuke for not fully complying with the order based on Agag's survival and that of livestock. Yet, this still offers nothing to diminish that the will of God was the murder of children and infants or that readers accept this as a moral punishment solely because it was the will of God (again, Euthyphro's dilemma goes unchecked).

      Again, there's no defense and we are required as mere mortals to judge the actions as either real or as reflective of the true nature of the OT god reflected in his "inspired word". I'll ask you plainly, when is the killing of children and infants ever justified?

      August 15, 2011 at 2:12 am |
    • really?!

      .you keep saying evolution has been proven...I'm talking about HUMAN evolution....Even on the basic levels...HUMAN evolution is just a theory...just like religion....do you really believe that I or any other christian has seen God....NO....I believe becuase I have faith...not because of what sunday school says or what my parents told me as a child. and I don't disbelieve just because there is another theory out there that sounds more convincing. The truth is WE will never know until it is too late....it appears that you and the other Athiests are going to take that chance

      August 15, 2011 at 2:17 am |
    • fred

      Q,
      I am not trying to rescue God He needs not help from me. I am just trying to get you understand there are many reasons why the one passage regarding the Amalekites may not be what you and I think it is. If you cannot be openmided about that what can you be openminded about. I hope you are not working on Global Warming. In the 70's the scientific community had the world in a stir because the ice age was returning, it took 5 years of warming before they jus pretended it never happened and the media blew it out of poportion.
      This same group think happens to Christians and to evolutionists. A whole bunch of folks are hung up on the big bang theory. Can you be open minded enough to say, you are not 100% sure and since your thread is on evolution can you say you are 100% sure the Bible is wrong as to the location of the first "man"
      1Genesis 2: 10-14 lays out the location of Eden. Since it was written in early 1400 BC some question how the writer knew that. Archeological research shows the basin on the Eastern Mediterranean is without doubt the cradle of civilization. How could the writer of Genesis know that? There is evidence to support the line of the chosen ones came from this “Eden. Level headed Archeologists for some reason are not looking for Narnia’s door. Certainly the metaphor of following waters in these rivers going four directions is symbolic of God’s blessings flowing to the 4 corners of the world (not literal corners) should not be overlooked.

      August 15, 2011 at 2:24 am |
    • Q

      @really?! – I've never used the word proven for the reasons I've repeatedly stated. Nonetheless:
      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100506141549.htm

      Add to this the various phylogenetic concordant endogenous retroviruses and our catalog of defunct genes (e.g. egg yolk protein) which, to steal from Evolutionary Biologist and Russian Orthodox Christian Theodosius Dobzhansky, simply do not make sense in the absence of evolution.

      August 15, 2011 at 2:26 am |
    • Q

      @Fred – With all due respect, please spare me the tangential references to your other culture wars of interest. I ask you plainly again, when is the murder of children and infants morally acceptable?

      August 15, 2011 at 2:28 am |
    • really?!

      human evolution logical? explain the logic....it only appears to be logical until uou begin to ask the questions for details, just as you did you religion.

      August 15, 2011 at 2:33 am |
    • Q

      @Really?! – In your last post you betray your motivations for your faith, you are afraid to die and hope a cosmic buttkiss will be the answer. Part and parcel is the need to believe humans are special but the evidence you actively deny and refuse to investigate indicates otherwise...

      @Fred – Please feel free to offer another long-winded and contorted line of reasoning for some of the "many" ways that I'm somehow taking, "...and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling..." out of its "true" context.

      In any case, I'll check back to see if there's been any further development but am now retiring...

      August 15, 2011 at 2:36 am |
    • Q

      @Really?! – Since we passed in posting and as I've been more than willing to entertain your repeated questions in good faith, quid pro quo: Explain the logic of accepting speciation for all classes of life but not humans?

      I'll read your evasion tomorrow...

      August 15, 2011 at 2:39 am |
    • fred

      Q
      It is God that gives free will and CS Lewis did a much better logic on that then I could ever come up with if your interested. It is flat out wrong for you or I to kill infants period. We have come a long way on the evolution chain. Since the Amalekites and thanks to science and culture we know certain things we did not know then. I think I may have said this before but man was not ready for Christ in the time of the Old Testament. God introduces us to things as we are able to understand. You and I are able to understand one does not kill infants. If we were born on a plantation just 200 years ago and were wealthy white land owners you cannot say we should have known blacks were not a lower form. Even Darwin based his first line on his own misguided conclusion that we were a surperior race on poor information.

      August 15, 2011 at 2:43 am |
    • really?!

      Q, are you serious? I remember when that article came out...it discusses how neanderthals and modern humans interbreeding....but it doesn't give any evidence on the origin of the home sapiens that were breeding withe neanderthals.....I'm still waiting on your article that discusses evidence of human speciation. or the origin of modern humans.

      August 15, 2011 at 2:47 am |
    • Shadowflash1522

      @Q – Nice posting, I thank you on behalf of the scientific community for your commitment to rational debate.

      @Fred, really:
      Q's argument does in fact have a sound logical structure. Allow me to spell it out for you in formal logical terms:
      Premise 1: Animals undergo evolutionary processes, i.e. speciation.
      Premise 2: Evolutionary processes (evolution) are driven by molecular machinery such as DNA.
      Premise 3: Humans also possess molecular machinery such as DNA.
      Conclusion: Therefore, it is highly probable that evolutionary processes, such as speciation, occur in humans.

      Notice the use of the term "probable". Science is an inductive discipline, not a deductive one (in logical terms). It can only point to the most likely outcome–there is a degree of uncertainty in all things, and science is ever open to change. Regrettably, I am not a statistician therefore I cannot speculate as to the *exact* probability, but I would like to point out that we have far more evidence for evolution (yes really, human evolution too) than gravity yet no one here is arguing that point.

      August 15, 2011 at 11:53 am |
    • Q

      @really?! – You certainly didn't read it and don't understand it. I've given you all the answers you've asked for and you dismiss them without any sign of actual investigation. Given your inability to respond to a simple question, I take that as your concession of the point at best or your genera and demonstrablel ignorance of the topic at worst...

      August 15, 2011 at 12:07 pm |
    • Q

      @Fred – You're firing off multiple lines of defense like a machine gunner with BS for ammunition.

      -Temporal/cultural relativism fail. The action/demand is that of God, not people. Still the people comply without questioning despite a previous order not to murder. People are a product of their times for sure, but here we're not talking about any old people, we're talking about the "chosen people" and a divine directive from the alleged benevolent omnipotent deity which contradicts a previous commandment.

      -Amalekite children/infants would have grown up evil fail. This removes free will, i.e. they had no choice and the outcome was certain. One could also point out the suffering of these children and infants when being hacked to death as contrary to the alleged benevolence of the deity in question. Spare me C.S. Lewis as I've read his very weak arguments for how one can have omnipotence and free will. If a behavior is known before hand and the knowledge is infallible, the behavior must comply with the foreknowledge lest the knowledge becomes fallible.

      In the first go around, you completely ignored the children and infants focusing solely on military strategy, etc. What's more informative than the poor arguments you offer is that you will no doubt continue to offer them or newer versions. What we've seen is the evolution of your argument like a windup toy bouncing into walls, reversing and then bouncing into some other wall. You're not defending out of reasoned logical constructs, you're defending out of a need to preserve some semblance of righteousness for a wholly unrighteous act. You are the very definition of cognitive dissonance and compartmentalization. If I believed in your God, I'd ask him to forgive you for your tireless defense of child and infant murder because you clearly know not what you're doing...

      August 15, 2011 at 12:46 pm |
    • fred

      Shadowflash1522,
      As to gravity Newton was proven wrong so I am glad you admit that. What is the probability that he Genesis account for the cradle of civilzation being in the garden of eden is correct? Last I saw evolutionists came up 3 possibilities and one by golly was the Garden of Eden and the other very low probability. So it is 50/50 as to the Genesis account being correct......just how did the writer know that 6,000 years ago?
      Could it be this is the missing link? No not the fragment of the evolutionists imagination but the bias of Darwin i.e. you refuse to admit as a possibility of the creators hand in the evolutionary process when you cannot dismiss it. At least give it a 1% probability instead of zero since you admit zero is unlikely.

      August 15, 2011 at 1:00 pm |
    • fred

      Q,
      I could give you an extensive list as to what was behind the killing of Amalekites infants. It would not matter. You have some kind of a wall up and cannot acknowledge another possibility. It is like some evolutionists that refuse to allow or cannot even see the possibility that the Bible got something right even though archeologists have proven it correct. This is the same thing you hate in a small % of people who do not believe in the theory of evolution. You call them closed minded Neanderthals. At least consider you are biased if unwilling to admit your atheist belief system cannot accept other valid input.

      August 15, 2011 at 1:16 pm |
    • fred

      Q,
      The core of the problem with you and infants is you will not and cannot accept that God will do as he pleases. Sorry Q, your input is not necessary for God to make a decision. If you wish to make an argument against God it must be based on who God is not who you wish he was or think he is. So begin with the foundation that God is just who he says he is in the Bible. It is just a foundational assumption for the basis of this discussion.
      Now, God created all including you and I and the Amalekite infants. Since God can do as he wills (our free will is always under the umbrella of Gods allowance of free will) we are his creation and as such He could un-create or wipe us out of existence any time any place doing as He wills with the body, spirit, soul whatever.
      1)only God knows what would have become of these infants(physically and eternally) we don’t.
      2) There are always lessons that can be learned from the effects we see in our physical environment. In this case the chosen people saw firsthand; the consequences of failure to follow Gods instructions to the letter, what happens to a people (Amalekites)that are totally immoral, what happens to a people that worship other Gods, God always follows through on his promises (said long ago he would wipe this bunch off the earth), God is merciful (set boundaries around those to be saved and did not allow infants to suffer without parents to care for them), etc.etc.
      3)There are lessons others can learn from reading the Bible; God is sovereign, sin has consequence, obedience to God is exacting, immorality is only put up with for so long (Amalekites immoral worse people you ever want to run across contaminate everything they touch), People never listen to God, etc, etc.

      August 15, 2011 at 1:55 pm |
    • Spiffy

      @fred
      So you admit that your God is immoral and free will is but an illusion. You are also saying that God is not a god of love but of egotistical hate.
      1)According to the bible they were killed. Unless of course the Bible is not divinely inspired.
      2)What lesson can we learn from genoc ide? That killing an entire people is ok because according to one group of people they are immoral? Is hell not punishment enough or are earthly punishments also necessary? I'm glad God was so merciful that he allowed the infants to be killed. That is a great show of mercy. Obviously there were no other alternatives but death.
      3)The lessons taught through this are not what you mentioned but that hypocrisy is fine as long as it is God who does it. Why is it that God doesn't have to obey the same laws he puts out for us? The same laws he supposedly punishes us for eternity for not obeying.
      In conclusion your God is an immoral, hypocritical monster that thinks killing children is ok because he is all powerful.

      August 15, 2011 at 2:45 pm |
    • fred

      Spiffy,
      Would you agree it would have been best that God not create at all? So Spiffy was iffy but never was. Spiffy was not aware of what the Amalekites did and what their character was and what they would continue to do cause he never was. Thank God for having mercy on the rest of oz.

      August 15, 2011 at 3:14 pm |
    • fred

      Spiffy,
      What evidence do you have that "God is an immoral, hypocritical monster that thinks killing children is ok ".

      August 15, 2011 at 3:16 pm |
    • Spiffy

      No it would have been worse if God created the universe. If everything was the creation of the horrible monster you call God. I have read the bible and know what the Amalekites did. That doesn't mean that the only answer was geno-cide. Of course you would rather be brain watched and believe that killing everyone of a certain group is the answer to the problem. I'm not sure how God showed mercy because instead of actually solving the problem he just decided to kill a bunch of people instead.

      My evidence of God being an immoral, hypocritical, monster that thinks killing children is ok comes from reading the bible.

      August 15, 2011 at 4:09 pm |
    • fred

      Spiffy,
      I cannot see another way to bring a buch of people like us to a point where finally we get the picture. As to the old testament it is a record of God revealing himself to his chosen ones. The Amalekite situation is but one case where we see what God does to an unrepentant heart, soul or people and we know based on history he does this every time. Note the Amalekites were given 420 years to get it straight and they did not so zap. The chosen were to were to kill em all but did not. Two things happened; Gods wrath was carried out and the people did not obey as they let some live. Those that lived came back to again haunt the chosen ones. This is the pattern you cannot out fox God or disobey God as the result is always death.
      Now you say if you were god you have a better way. Check it out there is not a better way unless you totally remove mans ability to do what ever.

      August 15, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
    • Spiffy

      So your saying that the only option of a omnipotent omniscient being was geno-cide. Since it is in the bible does that mean geno-cide is ok? If God (who is supposed to give us our morals according to the Christian faith) is allowed to commit geno-cide then why shouldn't we? I mean as long as there is a problem that spans many centuries the only obvious solution is to kill everyone who disagrees with you.

      August 15, 2011 at 10:52 pm |
    • really?!

      You guys are really making me laugh my ass off.
      Shadow: you said...
      Premise 1: Animals undergo evolutionary processes, i.e. speciation.
      Premise 2: Evolutionary processes (evolution) are driven by molecular machinery such as DNA.
      Premise 3: Humans also possess molecular machinery such as DNA.
      Conclusion: Therefore, it is highly probable that evolutionary processes, such as speciation, occur in humans.

      Youre logic is this... Evolution is true in animals...Evolution is driven by DNA...humans have DNA...therefore oy is highlt probable that humans evolved.......

      does that sum it up?

      August 15, 2011 at 11:20 pm |
    • really?!

      oh I missed something....human speciation...since animals do it...and we contain dNA just like they do....it's only logical that humans can do it to...right? whoa...i got it...i love how you guys talk about logic....and then post illogical arguments

      August 15, 2011 at 11:24 pm |
    • really?!

      spiffy and whoever wants to answer?

      Do you believe what you read in the Bible? You speak about all the horrible things in it as if you are horrified, however why be horrified at something that never happened? Spiffy...you said last night that you dont hate God..how can you hate something that doesn't exist...So why read the Bible? Just to have an answer for something you don't believe existed? It just boggles me that you guys are sooo entrenched on what is said inside the bible.....why care if you don't believe? just don't believe and go about your business.... that's what most people do if something disinterests them

      August 15, 2011 at 11:33 pm |
    • Q

      @Fred – Being a creator does not remove a responsibility to avoid undue suffering on the part of your creation, particularly if you are ascribed omnipotence and omnibenevolence. If you could create a dog from scratch, you would still be bound by a moral and ethical responsibility to not cause undue suffering. You could offer as many rationalizations for justifying child and infant slaughter as you'd like and they'd all fail on the simple grounds that it's immoral to slaughter children and infants. You simply won't concede this because you require your deity be infallible and though you'd likely deny this too, in your attempt to defend the biblical deity, you've only served to illustrate that the deity in question is capricious, brutal, schizophrenic and without compassion for the most defenseless among us.

      You write, "This is the same thing you hate in a small % of people who do not believe in the theory of evolution. You call them closed minded Neanderthals. At least consider you are biased if unwilling to admit your atheist belief system cannot accept other valid input." I've never remotely suggested or behaved as you suggest. I certainly don't hate those who deny the scientific evidence for evolution. Like Really?!, they are clearly very ignorant of the science and/or feel compelled to reject which they fear threatens their vain hopes for immortality (as do you with the moral discordance between Exo 20:13 and 1 Sam 15:3). You claim I'm biased. Well, of course. You see, my bias tells me slaughtering infants and children is morally wrong in any and all circmstances. You believe your input justifying child/infant murder is valid? You've not offered a single reasonable defense but further still, with each effort, you undermine other aspects of your claimed theology (e.g. free will, benevolence, OT/NT concordance, etc, etc).

      Yes, apparently "God will do as he pleases". Yours and my responsibility as humans is to accept or reject these behaviors and then provide at least some rational justification for the position we choose. To accept on "mysterious ways" rationalizations is very much akin to an officer accepting an order to slaughter unarmed civilians because they were ordered to and the commander probably had good reason. In other words, your above "creator's privilege" argument is an abdication of responsibility. I reject the behavior of child/infant murder because it's simply indefensible. You clearly accept it and have desperately attempted with multiple lines of flawed reasoning to provide justification. You would speak of the immorality of other tribes in the OT but have bent over backwards to defend an immoral murder of children and infants by the hands of the Israelite soldiers as commanded by your preferred deity. Again, pure cognitive dissonance.

      Let's just agree to disagree. I believe the slaughter of children and infants is abhorrent at any time, any place and under any circmstance. You believe taking a short sword and hacking, slicing and impaling children and infants (who under any reasonable definition cannot be held morally responsible for their own behavior let alone that of their parents and ancestors) is perfectly ok. You bring a whole new twisted perspective to "suffer the little children"...

      August 16, 2011 at 12:36 am |
    • Q

      @Really?! – We are by every definition, animals sharing the same biology from head to toe. Given you've now repeatedly failed to define what precisely is illogical or what distinguishes human biology from any other and have failed to respond to the various evidence, both fossil and molecular, I take your ad nauseam argument of repet_tion as your unwitting concession that you really don't have a response.

      August 16, 2011 at 12:46 am |
    • fred

      Q,
      We both agree that killing babies is wrong. You agree based on internal moral gps of some kind and I agree because God says thou shalt not kill and everything about God's person echos love over death.
      Now neither you or I can judge with perfection or see the past and future with perfection. The underlying assumption is that God (if he exists or not is separate argument) can do all with perfection. If God ends the existance of a child knowing full well what is best for that child who are we to argue.
      I need to run so I will pick up latter on tomorrow.

      August 16, 2011 at 2:02 am |
    • Spiffy

      @really?!-Of course I do not believe what I read in the bible. It is a book that has been manipulated and changed by humans for hundreds of years. I am horrified about some things I read in the bible. Why be horrified of things I believe never happened? Well 80% of the country I live in (the U.S) is Christian. The majority of my elected officials are Christian. The most powerful man in the world is Christian. How can you not be horrified by the bible if people in such power believe it to be infallible and the product of divine intervention? A book that says killing is wrong but then the same deity goes on to wipe out almost the entire world population because he says it is justified. Don't you see how that could possibly translate over?

      I read the bible for many reasons. One reason being that a third of the world population believes in it. That might become handy down the line. And two so I can show people how unloving and immoral their loving and perfect God really is. I am not entrenched in what the bible says. Christians are. I am an Atheist. How could I be entrenched in something I believe to be a collection of stories that have no use in our modern society? I care for reasons mentioned above. I wish I could disbelieve and go on but Christians make that impossible. They decide to force their religion upon me through government policies and laws. They preach ignorance by trying to take evolution from our schools. How could I move on and not care when so much of Christianity is forced on me unwillingly?

      If people listened to your philosophy of "just don't believe and go about your business.... that's what most people do if something disinterests them" then the world would be a horrible place.

      August 16, 2011 at 2:25 am |
    • Shadowflash1522

      @fred:
      Newton may not have had the precise mechanics of gravity down, but are you really going to argue that it doesn't exist? With respect, I believe you to be far more intelligent than that. Secondly, you are correct in stating that the "cradle of civilization"–your Garden of Eden, if you will–was most likely the Fertile Crescent in Mesopotamia (modern day Iran/Iraq). Ancient authors would not have known that exact fact, but it would have certainly been the oldest cvilizaiton they knew of. This hardly requires coincidence, much less divine intervention.

      Furthermore, the creator theory is not dismissed by scientists because it is "impossible". On the contrary, there is a nonzero probability (1% may be a high estimate, again I am an engineer not a statistician) that it is true. It is dismissed by scientists because it is *impossible to test*. There is no evidence or method of testing/observation that can serve to meet the demands of scientific rigor. Unfortunately, the Bible simply does not meet modern scientific standards. Even if it did, you would need multiple independant sources corroborating it's account in order for it to even be introduced into serious scientific study.

      @really:
      I cordially invite to you explain how the argument I have presented is "illogical". I grant that it does not meet the stringent standards of a deductive argument, but we have already established that science is not a deductive field. By all means, educate us.

      August 16, 2011 at 2:16 pm |
    • fred

      Shadowflash1522
      As an engineer perhaps you can help me. It seems to me the author is just using a big word "mathmatical prediction" to say the numbers add up when you count cetain days. If you have a moment take a look at this : http://www.iclnet.org/pub/resources/text/m.sion/kjesenpr.htm

      Is this use of mathmatical prediction just another Chrisian contrivance, coincodence or did Daniel hear from God?

      August 16, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
    • Q

      @Fred – Again, you are invoking mysterious ways and arguing by definitional fiat. Everything God does is moral. This is pure moral relativism as God commands both against murder and for murder; and so murder is both moral and immoral at the same time (e.g. Euthyphro's dilemma). You might again chose to argue God knew the children would grow up to be evil, but here you destroy free will in that without actually having individually chosen this path, they have been judged. You have again broached upon omnibenolence in their slaughter, but in offering this rationale, you cannot argue against any murder of any child under any circmstance as they would all necessarily be part of God's plan and by extension, morality is so relativistic that the word no longer has any meaning, i.e. all is good as it is the will of God (the problem of evil). You cannot offer this defense while advocating against abortion (which I believe I've seen) given these abortions are too, God's will.

      What you've also failed to consider is the manner in which they died. An omnipotent deity with infinite options available chose brutality and horrific suffering when it was within his power to simply cease their lives, painlessly, humanely. If you had an overly aggressive dog, would you end its life as quickly and painlessly as possible? Now, imagine you have a puppy and someone who claims to speak for God told you God wants you to kill the puppy with a hatchet. At what point do you resign the obligation to think and feel for yourself?

      Fred, forgive me but as a parent of both a child and a "suckling", perhaps I let my emotions get the best of me. I don't actually believe you're in favor of child murder, but you are definitely attempting to rationalize it and frankly, it's infuriating to hear someone who would undoubtedly claim to be an advocate of love dehumanizing children for no other purpose than to preserve a twisted theodicy. Scanning the CNN homepage, I came across this article:
      http://www.cnn.com/2011/CRIME/08/17/missouri.missing.girl/index.html?hpt=hp_t2

      What are your first thoughts when you think of her last terrifying moments on this planet struggling to breath? Are you wondering if she might have grown up to be evil? Did she deserve it in any way? What if Morgan claimed he was told by God to do this? Who are you to argue?

      August 17, 2011 at 1:31 am |
    • fred

      Q
      Whacking puppies and what happened to that little girl are the acts of a very deranged mind. Such acts are far from a holy God and clearly we would not hear from God to do such a thing. As a matter of fact the forces that cause such outrageous behavior will meet the full wrath of God who said if anyone cause one of these little ones to stumble it would be better he were never born. Also remember Jesus said “things are not as they appear”.
      From what we know there are several conclusions that can be drawn regarding God killing all Amalekites. We know from 1 Samuel 28:18 it was Gods fierce wrath against them. Because of this most conclude it shows how much God hates sin, disobedience and evil. Amalekites were evil. Sin and evil are not of God though he allows it. God promises to deal with it and this is proof that He means what He says. God dealt with the repeated sin and evil of the Amalekites after giving them hundreds of years to shape up. God dealt with the disobedience of his people for not following His commands. Can it be this simple or is it as Jesus said things are not as they appear?

      August 17, 2011 at 2:45 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29
Advertisement
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.