Can the Christian crusade against pornography bear fruit?
After avoiding talk about sex from the pulpit for years, pastors are now speaking out against porn.
August 21st, 2011
01:00 AM ET

Can the Christian crusade against pornography bear fruit?

By Ashley Fantz, CNN

Atlanta (CNN) - He is a good Christian, Michael is telling his two therapists. He goes to church most Sundays. He’s a devoted husband and father of two daughters.

“But when I would leave on business trips,” he says, “I knew I was going to get to be someone else.”

“Prostitutes, porn - I took anything I wanted.”

Sitting on a comfortable, worn couch, Michael glances out the window and sees a reflection of himself set against the parking lot of this suburban Atlanta office building. He fidgets, runs his fingers over his closely cropped blond hair and straightens his green tennis polo. He clears his throat.

Above his head hangs a poster covered in words describing feelings - angry, anxious, sad. On it is a big yellow cross.

Therapists Richard Blankenship and Mark Richardson wear solemn but empathetic expressions. Certified counselors and Christian ministers, they tell him they know how to listen and nod for him to continue.

“I’ve had a record of purity since March when I confessed to my wife,” says Michael, whose name has been changed by CNN.com to protect his privacy. “No porn, no masturbation.”

“Awesome,” Richardson says, leaning forward in his chair. “God knows you’re trying.”

This is Michael’s second week at “Faithful and True – Atlanta” a 16-week counseling program that, like dozens of others like it around the country, combines traditional psychotherapy with the Bible in an attempt to treat addictive behavior.

Blankenship, a devout Christian who once struggled with sexual abuse, says his own ordeal has helped him to treat and “graduate” nearly 500 Christian men and women with similar addictions in the last five years.

He says he has helped people achieve what he calls “sobriety,” which means resisting porn and lustful thoughts.

Though controversial in secular circles, much of the evangelical Christian world has been cheering this relatively new kind of therapy. Many believers, including many Christian leaders, consider it a powerful tool for fighting what they say is one of the modern church’s biggest problems: porn addiction.

A crusade is born

Not long ago, it was unheard of for a pastor to talk about sex from the pulpit.

Today, clergy are talking about porn.

Many evangelical pastors say they don’t have a choice. The Internet has made porn unavoidable; it’s everywhere. And porn, they say, leads to a lack of intimacy in marriage, threatening the biblical mandate to get and stay married.

In the past few years, Christian leaders have established online ministries to tackle the problem, hosting anti-porn podcast sermons and Web chats. The popular evangelical blog Crosswalk.com recently ran an article headlined “How many porn addicts are in your church?”

Christian publishers, meanwhile, have produced a wave of recent books on the subject, including popular titles like “Porn-Again Christian,” “Secret Sexual Sins: Understanding a Christian's Desire for Pornography” and “Eyes of Integrity: The Porn Pandemic and How It Affects You.”

Evangelical pastor Jeremy Gyorke recently came forward to talk about how porn has affected him. In July, the 32-year-old confessed his porn addiction in a sermon at Wyandotte Family Church, just outside Detroit.

“I’m part of a generation of Christians who grew up keeping your mouth shut about your personal life,” he says. “Goodness no, we didn’t talk about sex.”

“But now that we have a little say in the attitude of the church, we’re taking a different approach,” Gyorke continues. “We’re putting it all out there, saying you don’t have to keep secrets. Come forward and admit that you’ve made a mistake, and you can be healed.”

Gyorke said he confessed to his congregation after his wife caught him looking at porn and told him it made her feel inadequate. She wanted him to seek help and to be transparent as a man of God.

Gyorke ultimately decided that viewing any porn, even once or twice, is a problem for believers.

“It’s like a gateway drug,” he says. “You can’t just have a little look. If you look at porn, you’ve already given your heart and spirit away to someone who isn’t your wife.”

As he wrote his sermon on the matter, Gyorke felt tremendous anxiety. “I thought it would make or break me to them as their pastor,” he says.

But his flock reacted with empathy and support. Several congregants approached him afterward to say that they, too, felt that they’d acted against God by looking at porn.

Different interpretations

Though the words “porn” and “masturbation” don’t appear in the Bible, Gyorke believes the biblical verdict is clear. “Sexual immorality is mentioned a lot in the Bible, and that is what porn is,” he says.

He quotes the Gospel of Matthew: “But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”

“Porn is lust, and lust is a sin,” the pastor said.

Many religious scholars say that such a view reflects just one of many interpretations.

“One school of biblical study says that desire is a problem and needs to be monitored as a serious threat to salvation,” says Boston University theology professor Jennifer Wright Knust.

But Knust points to scriptural passages that appear to endorse sexual desire, including the Song of Solomon, a poem that some scholars say depicts two lovers graphically describing each other’s anatomy in an ode to unmarried sex.

“This is not new. It’s a cherry-picking of scripture used to address what’s happening right now in popular culture,” says Knust, author of the recent book “Unprotected Texts: The Bible’s Surprising Contradictions on Sex and Desire.” “The new thing is that it’s being used by so-called Christian therapists.”

Knust says the anti-porn trend in Christian therapy reflects new questions in broader society about what constitutes an appropriate relationship, about gender roles and rules, and about what marriage really means.

“People are concerned and confused, and want to know if God is speaking to us in our sexual roles,” she says. “Can we find answers in divine revelation? People have always hoped that there can be certainty in the Bible.

“There is no certainty,” she says. “It’s interpretation.”

XXX churches

A few weeks after delivering his confessional sermon, Gyorke organized a Sunday event at his church intended to help keep congregants away from pornography.

He gave out study guides with scriptural verses related to lust and showed a slick video from XXXChurch, the main Web-based group for the Christian anti-porn movement.

The video opens with a mock-pharmaceutical infomercial for a product called “Lustivin.” It raves about how wonderful the drug can make you feel in the short term but then lists some major side effects: premature relational difficulty, divorce, shallow relationships.

Craig Gross, a young pastor from California, co-founded XXXChurch.com in 2001. Its URL was meant to snag people who were surfing the Web for dirty pictures.

“Ten years ago, when I wanted to bring the church up to date, everyone was like, ‘This won’t work. People will be confused about what you’re doing,’ ” Gross says.

“It was controversial at the time, but the church is always behind the times,” he says. “We should have had a XXXChurch.com in the late 1990s if we really wanted to get ahead of this problem.”

The site was slow to catch on for its first few years, but now gets millions of clicks a day from IP addresses around the globe, Gross said.

This year, XXXChurch sponsored Porn Sunday, a national anti-porn event that included hundreds of churches across the country screening a video starring Matt Hasselbeck, who's now quarterback for the Tennessee Titans, and other Christian NFL stars.

Soundbites from the players speak to the struggle between porn and faith.

“Sex is an awesome thing that God designed,” Hasselbeck says in the video.

Jon Kitna, a Dallas Cowboys quarterback, talks about surfing the Web and getting deeper into porn sites. “[You] see this [link] and it leads you to a link to this … ” he says. “And pretty soon, I’m into a world that I never really knew existed.”

For $7 a month, XXXChurch offers porn-detection software that fires off automatic e-mail alerts to a subscriber and his or her chosen “faith buddy,” a kind of whistle-blowing system designed to keep Christians from going astray.

Achieving “sobriety”

But some Christians have gone much further in their attempts to tackle porn addictions, literally rearranging their lives.

When Jeff Colon, a self-described recovering porn addict in Kentucky, confessed his addiction to his wife, she told him to get help or find a divorce attorney.

It was the early 1990s. Christian sex addition counseling was unheard of. But Colon’s pastor - to whom he’d also confided - called other church leaders and learned of a Christian counseling retreat called Pure Life Ministries, a kind of Christian compound that includes a chapel and all-male dormitory on 44 acres in western Kentucky.

Today, Colon is the president of Pure Life, which he credits with saving his marriage.

He says the program has cured thousands of men of their porn addictions through a six- to 12-month program of one-on-one or group therapy sessions.

The live-in program costs $175 a week. Men must move to the campus and live alone, with wives having the option of talking to Pure Life counselors by phone. Most insurance plans don’t cover Pure Life - a moot concern, really, because most program participants quit their jobs to relocate.

That’s what Colon, who was working as an elevator repairman, did. “I don’t regret it for a second,” he says. “It was a hard time not because I lost my job or had to move from my family. It was a tough time because I had nearly lost my connection with God. That is what’s most important in life.”

Pure Life’s curriculum relies heavily on Paul’s Letter to the Galatians, which stresses that if one lives “by the Spirit,” he will not “gratify the desires of the flesh.”

The scripture goes on to say that those who gratify the flesh “will not inherit the kingdom of God.” Women are not allowed on campus during the initial phase of treatment.

“People who don’t follow Christ aren’t going to get what I’m saying, but it was like intense Bible study that helped me understand how selfish I am as a sinner,” Colon says. “Basically, you have time to talk to God, and for him to show you the way to sobriety. And I’ve been sober for 17 years.”

For Colon, sobriety means abstaining from looking at porn, masturbating and performing any other sex act not involving his spouse.

“You learn that lust is just a state of mind,” he says. “If you lust for someone other than your wife, what you do is replace that lust with prayer. And you have a heart change.”

Indeed, Colon says that God was central to his recovery.

“I know secular people don’t get it,” he says. “But if I had a sponsor who was just another person, a person who is fallible, telling me to stay clean, it’s just not as powerful as God telling me that.”

“Women … drowning in this addiction”

Men aren’t the only ones who have started thinking that way about porn.

According to the creator of accountability2you, a Web-based service that dumps all the pornographic material someone surfs into his or her spouse’s e-mail inbox, roughly half of his 10,000 monthly subscribers are women.

“The Christian Church has started to realize that we’re sexual, too, and we are just as visually stimulated as men and we look at porn,” said Crystal Renaud, author of the recent book “Dirty Girls Come Clean,” a memoir about her own addiction to porn.

For the past year, the 26-year-old with punky-streaked hair has led Christian women’s porn addiction counseling sessions. Her Dirty Girls Ministries website has 450 members.

“I’ve met women who will lock themselves in a room and look at porn all day, ignoring their kids or their jobs,” she says. “I feel like I can relate because that’s all I cared about, getting my high. There are so many more women out there drowning in this addiction, you have no idea.”

Though there are few statistics to support Renaud’s claims about the extent of the problem, Christian media outlets like Today’s Christian Woman have recently run stories about women consuming porn, often theorizing that the habit starts with explicit romance novels.

Renaud has received a sexual addiction counseling certification from the American Association of Christian Counselors, though she is not licensed by secular organizations like the American Psychological Association. She promotes a five-step program she’s devised called SCARS - Surrender, Confessional, Accountability, Responsibility, Sharing - which encourages women to confess to each other about their desire to look at porn as a means of saying no to it.

In her memoir, Renaud writes about becoming a chronic masturbator and porn addict at age 10, after stumbling upon a dirty magazine in her brother’s room. It was a confusing, scary experience, she writes.

“My mother made it very clear what the parameters were when it came to sex, and there wasn’t a discussion beyond that,” Renaud said. She describes her relationship with her father as rocky, but wouldn’t elaborate.

In high school, Renaud was a leader in her Christian youth group, but she was also interested in porn. “I felt so bad and I wanted to stop looking at porn because that wasn’t what the Bible instructed,” she says, “and I knew God didn’t want me doing that.”

When she was 18, Renaud arranged to have sex for the first time at a hotel with a person she met in a Christian chat room. She says she went to the hotel but broke down in tears in her room and left before meeting the man.

“That was my rock bottom,” she says. “I remember being there and sobbing, thinking, ‘What am I doing risking my life to meet someone at a hotel I don’t even know?’”

Renaud said that she depends on God to keep her clean and that God is a kind of sponsor or monitor. When she wants to look at porn or masturbate, she and God have a kind of conversation, and the desire passes.

A crusade’s critics

The father of Christian-based porn and sex addiction therapy has a word for this “pray-away” method of sobriety.


Dr. Mark Laaser pioneered the Christian response to porn and sex addiction in the 1980s and chides counseling centers like Pure Life for what he says is their near-total reliance on prayer.

“Alcoholics don’t wish really hard to not be addicted to alcohol,” he says in a phone interview from his busy therapeutic practice in suburban Minneapolis. “The field of addiction is much deeper than opening your Bible.”

He’s pleased that more Christians are openly talking about pornography and sex addiction, but Laaser says he’s concerned that some Christian leaders and therapists are confusing sexual sin with sex addiction.

“Men come dragging into my office because their wives have caught them masturbating and labeled them addicts, or they’ve had one affair and they are now looking to have their affair excused by addiction,” he says.

“One affair doesn’t mean you’re a porn addict,” Laaser says. “Looking at porn occasionally doesn’t make you a porn addict. Those may be poor decisions, but they are not necessarily caused by clinical addiction.”

Porn is estimated to be a multibillion-dollar industry in America alone, banking at least 10 times what it did in 1970, the first time the U.S. government evaluated the retail value of the nation’s then-fledgling hardcore film, television and retail market.

During that same decade, Laaser had become the porn industry’s ideal customer. He was constantly on the hunt for it.
As a devout Christian, he spent a lot of energy trying to keep his porn a secret, especially from his wife, Debbie. His guilt distanced him from her emotionally, he says, and began eroding their relationship.

At the time, there was virtually no established psychological research, or mainstream therapy, for sex addiction. So Laaser reached out to secular 12-step programs, using Alcoholics Anonymous’ framework as a guide to reaching what he called sexual “sobriety,” abstaining from sex outside of marriage and avoiding masturbation.

“I remember thinking I wish my problem were drinking because I could get help easier,” Laaser said.

By the late ’80s, Laaser says, he was on the road to sobriety, combining therapeutic methods he’d learned while pursuing a doctorate in psychology from the University of Iowa and a divinity degree from Princeton Theological Seminary.

“It began to seem very evident to me that secular therapy does not work as effectively for Christians,” he said. “And that’s because the secular world … to us as Christians, seems less moral. Sex is everywhere in secular society - television, film, billboards. It’s just so much a part of life that it is excused.

“Christians just aren’t going to seek out a secular therapist - they won’t seek therapy at all if they don’t have some aspect of Christianity woven into their treatment.”

In 1992, Laaser authored the first book on Christian sexual addiction, titled “The Secret Sin.”

“The Christian church, both Protestant and Catholic, is experiencing tremendous turmoil in the area of sexuality,” it began. “The problem seems epidemic.”

It sold barely enough copies to stay in print.

In 2005, the publisher changed the title to “Healing the Wounds of Sexual Addiction,” and Laaser added chapters on Internet porn. It has sold 75,000 copies.

In Laaser’s care, a patient will undergo psychiatric evaluation, just as he would in the secular world. Laaser wants to know if the patient has any symptoms of depression, ADHD or anxiety. He says many sex addicts suffer from other mental health issues.

“You may need to go to a meeting every day, or connect with a sponsor; you may need to check in with this office once a day,” he said. “Every client is different, but we’re essentially helping them establish boundaries and restrictions.”

Some secular therapists have warmed to this kind of approach.

“The deeply religious were a group that were hard to reach years ago because they had extreme shame connected with their addiction,” says Tim Lee, a licensed social worker in New York with a specialty in sex and porn addiction treatment.

But Lee and Pennsylvania sex therapist Dr. John Giugliano, both members of the Society for Sexual Advancement - a national nonprofit think tank of licensed sex therapists - worry that therapy can become overly focused on dogma and ignore the patient’s real-life issues.

“If you spend your time in session talking about what God thinks and what the Bible says, you don’t get to understand what the patient thinks and what happened in their life up to that point that explains why,” Giugliano says.

Even within the world of Christian therapy, some counselors criticize the methods of other religious counselors.

Richard Blankenship, the Atlanta-based Christian therapist, studied under Laaser in the early 2000s. When Blankenship set up his practice in Atlanta to treat sex addicts, he used the same name as Laaser’s ministry, “Faithful and True,” adding only the word “Atlanta.”

But Laaser wants to make it clear that he has no association with Blankenship’s practice and doesn’t agree with some aspects of Blankenship’s program.

Blankenship doesn’t rely enough on psychological expertise, Laaser says. Laaser objects to a therapist telling a patient that an addiction may be patterns repeated through generations, as Blankenship does. And Laaser disagrees with Blankenship’s habit of connecting a patient’s addiction to a biblical character’s family tree.

Abraham’s family tree

For the rest of his therapy session at Faithful and True, Michael circles emotions from a list that Richardson and Blankenship have provided. He circles “anxious” and then describes a fight he had with his wife about his infidelity.

Blankenship responds to Michael’s description of the fight by saying that addiction is generational, mentioning the Kennedys and the Fondas.

Then Blankenship queues up a PowerPoint presentation on a laptop, showing Michael a family tree he has designed around the biblical story of Abraham.

It has a lot of boxes. There are several pages.

Abraham, Blankenship says, was a guy who committed some sexual transgressions, like fathering a child with Hagar while his wife was barren. Ultimately, God forgave him.

Michael starts talking about his own family. He describes a difficult upbringing with a father whom he said was philandering and verbally abusive. He says sex wasn’t talked about at his house when he was growing up.

Before the session ends, Michael is assured that there’s no reason to think that he won’t kick his addiction. He’ll be on a new path, Blankenship says, toward “sexual integrity.”

The 90-minute session comes to a close with a prayer.

Blankenship and his co-counselor Mark Richardson lower their heads.

Richardson asks that God look after Michael. He asks God to bless this therapy process. Michael is heading out into the world, he says, heading back into a culture of temptation and lust and ungodly ways.

Look after him, the therapist says, keep him on the right path.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Christianity • Church • Sex

soundoff (3,536 Responses)
  1. Random Thought

    Just gonna point this out... No one ever got AIDS or unwanted pregnancy from bating. It's really just a positive life choice...

    August 21, 2011 at 11:40 am |
    • Gabriela

      Louise KellyOne thing that has always ceonusfd me is the conflation of the term Son of God with the term Messiah or Lord . These terms don't mean the same thing, do they? As someone who was raised Jewish but has been very inspired by your books, I really struggle with this. It seems to me that as soon as you call Jesus the Son of God it implies that the pre-Easter Jesus was something more than human. In contrast, the term Messiah means (I think) that Jesus was a human being chosen by God to be God's ultimate message or revelation and thus, in his post-Easter incarnation, should be our Lord the one we should follow in our lives, rather than the other would be lords of this world' such as money or power. I believe that something happened after Jesus died something that we can't explain and that the spirit of the post-Easter Jesus has touched millions of people (including myself). I view Easter as God's way of saying hey that message I sent you was the real deal'. But I can't accept that the pre-Easter Jesus was divine. Divinely inspired yes but God's divine son on earth no.I think a lot of Christians really struggle with the supernatural portrayal of the pre-Easter Jesus. Is there a different way to think of the term Son of God' that helps with this problem?

      March 2, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
  2. not sure

    I don't know where all of this hate is coming from on this comments thread. If someone wants to believe in God or higher power than let them. If someone calls you a moron for believing or not believing in such things, then let them.

    It's easy to get riled up over someone calling you out for an ideology you hold dear to your heart, but in the end it's just their opinion. Nothing more or less.

    August 21, 2011 at 11:37 am |
    • not sure


      August 21, 2011 at 11:38 am |
    • disgust

      No problem. Just be fair to children, let kids be kids without the brainwashing. Then again religions know that brainwashing sticks if you begin in early childhood. Just look at the cult believer here.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:40 am |
    • Les

      Opinions based on scientific fact are valid. Opinions that are based on false information are not and are open to the criticism and derision they necessarily engender. You are indeed free to express an opinion. That does not translate into everybody excepting the drivel of fools as somehow magically validated by their pronouncements..

      August 21, 2011 at 2:07 pm |
  3. Colin

    Richard T:

    To get a gauge of just how completely absurd the belief in Adam and Eve is in the 21st Century, here are some areas fundamentalists must ignore, any one of which proves beyond rational argument that, not surprisingly, the World did not start about 6,000 years ago at the behest of the Judeo-Christian god, with one man, one woman and a talking snake.

    First and most obviously is the fossil record. The fossil record is much, much more than just dinosaurs. Indeed, dinosaurs only get the press because of their size, but they make up less than 1% of the entire fossil record. Life had been evolving on Earth for over 3 thousand million years before dinosaurs evolved and has gone on evolving for 65 million years after the Chicxulub meteor wiped them out.

    The fossil record includes the Stromatolites, colonies of prokaryotic bacteria, that range in age going back to about 3 billion years, the Ediacara fossils from South Australia, widely regarded as among the earliest multi-celled organisms, the Cambrian species of the Burgess shale in Canada (circa – 450 million years) the giant scorpions of the Silurian Period, the giant, wingless insects of the Devonian period, the insects, amphibians, reptiles; fishes, clams, crustaceans of the Carboniferous Period, the many precursors to the dinosaurs, the dinosaurs themselves, the subsequent dominant mammals, including the saber tooth tiger, the mammoths of North America and Asia, the fossils of early man in Africa and the Neanderthals of Europe.

    The fossil record shows a consistent and worldwide evolution of life on Earth dating back to about 3,500,000,000 years ago. There are literally millions of fossils that have been recovered, of thousands of different species and they are all located where they would be in the geological record if life evolved slowly over billions of years. None of them can be explained by a 6,000 year old Earth and Noah’s flood. Were they all on the ark? What happened to them when it docked?

    A Tyrannosaurus Rex ate a lot of food – meat- which means its food would itself have to have been fed, like the food of every other carnivore on the ark. A bit of “back of the envelope” math quickly shows that “Noah’s Ark” would actually have to have been an armada of ships bigger than the D Day invasion force, manned by thousands and thousands of people – and this is without including the World’s 300,000 current species of plants, none of which could walk merrily in twos onto the Ark.

    Secondly, there are those little things we call oil, natural gas and other fossil fuels. Their mere existence is another, independent and fatal blow to the creationists. Speak to any geologist who works for Exxon Mobil, Shell or any of the thousands of mining, oil or natural gas related companies that make a living finding fossil fuels. They will tell you these fossil fuels take millions of years to develop from the remains of large forests (in the case of coal) or tiny marine creatures (in the case of oil). That’s why they are called fossil fuels. Have a close look at coal, you can often see the fossilized leaves in it. The geologists know exactly what rocks to look for fossil fuels in, because they know how to date the rocks to millions of years ago. Creationists have no credible explanation for this (nor for why most of it was “given to the Muslims”).

    Thirdly, most of astronomy and cosmology would be wrong if the creationists were right. In short, as Einstein showed, light travels at a set speed. Space is so large that light from distant stars takes many years to reach the Earth. In some cases, this is millions or billions of years. The fact that we can see light from such far away stars means it began its journey billions of years ago. The Universe must be billions of years old. We can currently see galaxies whose light left home 13.7 billion years ago. Indeed, on a clear night, one can see many stars more than 6,000 light years away with the naked eye, shining down like tiny silent witnesses against the nonsense of creationism.

    Fourthly, we have not just carbon dating, but also all other methods used by scientists to date wood, rocks, fossils, and other artifacts. These comprehensively disprove the Bible’s claims. They include uranium-lead dating, potassium-argon dating as well as other non-radioactive methods such as pollen dating, dendrochronology and ice core dating. In order for any particular rock, fossil or other artifact to be aged, generally two or more samples are dated independently by two or more laboratories in order to ensure an accurate result. If results were random, as creationists claim, the two independent results would rarely agree. They generally do. They regularly reveal ages much older than Genesis. Indeed, the Earth is about 750,000 times older than the Bible claims.

    Fifthly, the relatively new field of DNA mapping not only convicts criminals, it shows in undeniable, full detail how we differ from other life forms on the planet. For example, about 98.4% of human DNA is identical to that of chimpanzees, about 97% of human DNA is identical to that of gorillas, and slightly less again of human DNA is identical to the DNA of monkeys. This gradual divergence in DNA can only be rationally explained by the two species diverging from a common ancestor, and coincides perfectly with the fossil record. Indeed, scientists can use the percentage of DNA that two animal share (such as humans and bears, or domestic dogs and wolves) to get an idea of how long ago the last common ancestor of both species lived. It perfectly corroborates the fossil record and is completely independently developed. It acts as yet another fatal blow to the “talking snake” theory.

    Sixthly, the entire field of historical linguistics would have to be rewritten to accommodate the Bible. This discipline studies how languages develop and diverge over time. For example, Spanish and Italian are very similar and have a recent common “ancestor” language, Latin, as most people know. However, Russian is quite different and therefore either did not share a common root, or branched off much earlier in time. No respected linguist anywhere in the World traces languages back to the Tower of Babel, the creationists’ explanation for different languages. Indeed, American Indians, Australian Aboriginals, “true” Indians, Chinese, Mongols, Ja.panese, Sub-Saharan Africans and the Celts and other tribes of ancient Europe were speaking thousands of different languages thousands of years before the date creationist say the Tower of Babel occurred – and even well before the date they claim for the Garden of Eden.

    Seventhly, lactose intolerance is also a clear vestige of human evolution. Most mammals only consume milk as infants. After infancy, they no longer produce the enzyme “lactase” that digests the lactose in milk and so become lactose intolerant. Humans are an exception and can drink milk as adults – but not all humans – some humans remain lactose intolerant. So which humans are no longer lactose intolerant? The answer is those who evolved over the past few thousand years raising cows. They evolved slightly to keep producing lactase as adults so as to allow the consumption of milk as adults. This includes most Europeans and some Africans, notably the Tutsi of Rwanda. On the other hand, most Chinese, native Americans and Aboriginal Australians, whose ancestors did not raise cattle, remain lactose intolerant.

    I could go on and elaborate on a number of other disciplines or facts that creationists have to pretend into oblivion to retain their faith, including the Ice Ages, cavemen and early hominids, much of microbiology, paleontology and archeology, continental drift and plate tectonics, even large parts of medical research (medical research on monkeys and mice only works because they share a common ancestor with us and therefore our fundamental cell biology and basic body architecture is identical to theirs).

    In short, and not surprisingly, the World’s most gifted evolutionary biologists, astronomers, cosmologists, geologists, archeologists, paleontologists, historians, modern medical researchers and linguists (and about 2,000 years of accu.mulated knowledge) are right and a handful of Iron Age Middle Eastern goat herders were wrong.

    August 21, 2011 at 11:36 am |
    • barberie

      no one's going to read all that, colin.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:41 am |
    • John


      About time someone here simply states the truth.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:43 am |
    • USAtheist

      I did barbie – and cannot wait for the christians' usual excuses – he will burn in hell, god is too big for us to understand, what's to say seven days meant seven days, the devil buried the fossils there to fool us, bla, bla, bla.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:45 am |
    • rufusclyde

      Did Richard T say anything about evolution? Lots of Christian denominations accept evolution.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:45 am |
    • AGuest9

      Barberie, its WHY we have to fight for our childrens' educations every day in this country. People like this and their beliefs will make it so that soon, our biologists will have to learn virology and immunology as an "underground science", because they prove evolution. In Florida, professors teaching evolution have been attacked and had their cars vandalized. Professors in Alabama have been denied tenure and later "let go" for their "belief" in evolution. We desperately need STEM and biology in this country to stay ahead. We won't get it by allowing people to lie and quote fiction to our children.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:45 am |
    • TC

      Always amusing to see atheists talk about science and world history which is what most people believe ven Christians. Atheist agenda is always an epic fail- you predicate your beliefs on what others cannot prove to you. You wasted your time typing that much.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:46 am |
    • Random Thought

      I skimmed it at least. It was very good, but I don't think any "true" creationist has gone without hearing all this, and probably won't care / refuses to accept it.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:46 am |
    • David Griebel

      Well written and interesting. Ty.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:51 am |
    • Lloyd

      So where is the half-monkey/half-man transitional form? Where's the half-chimp/half-ape? Sounds all nice, but if the species were and are transitioning, then you'd expect to see these transitional forms which don't exist.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:52 am |
    • Peace2All


      Good post mate !


      August 21, 2011 at 11:53 am |
    • havingFun

      Ah, Colin, you ask fundamentalists to be rational, when their entire belief system is irrational. I actually listened to a preacher a while ago (can't recall who) who postulated that "God", in his infinite wisdom, deliberately confused the issue with the fossil record to test human's ability to just believe! Then he went on to say that the fossil record is consistent with Creationism because a Biblical year could be several millions of years. The arrogance!

      August 21, 2011 at 11:56 am |
    • Colin

      Lloyd – that is a common fallacy. Every species is, in a sense, a transitional species between the species from which it evolved and the subsequent species which may evolve from it. For example, it is possible that we evolved from ho.mo erecuts, which itself evolved from an earlier ho.monid such as austalopethicus afarenses. It is a function of time, and many thousands of years are generally required, for evolution to work its math.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:59 am |
    • rufusclyde

      @Lloyd: Actually, the fossil record is chock full of transitional forms in the hominid lineage.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:02 pm |
    • Colin

      HF – I've heard that nonsense too. The authors of Genesis "knew all about evolution and the geological age of the earth" but chose not to mention it. We mortal souls did not learn about it for another 1900 years.

      If there is one skill of the creationists I admire, it is their phenominal ability to reject inconvenient facts.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:03 pm |
    • rufusclyde

      @ Colin: If speciation is due to cladogenesis, splitting, rather than anagenesis, which you described, then sister species can diverge enormously over evolutionary time.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:06 pm |
    • MrMustachio0001

      hahaha! I love how self righteous you are. prattling on with your well written and scientifically supported ideas disproving creationalism. Just a few questions for ya though? Where's the missing links between all these animal if evolution is real. yeah, yeah, yeah, lucy and all that jazz. but if evolution occurs over the course of millions of years shouldn't there be a ton more fossils like lucy (I know that she's not the only one) And I thought it would've occured to you (since you're so smart) that a day for god is not the same as a day for man. And did you know that god (by christian account) created the heavens and earth before man? So all that mumbo jumbo about the speed of light and dinosaurs are good points but if you consider that a god day is not the same as a man day then it's perfectly fine to say that a star is light years away, catch my drift? Same point about the dinosaurs, since animals were created before man, couldn't the dinosaurs have come and gone already? And what purpose would the bible account for these dinosaurs anyway. The bible is intended as a tool to guide man, not instruct us about animals. I don't want to learn about dino-families and what dinos ate each other, its silly. I grow tired of this silly discussion. I'm just saying man, you wrote alot. Was all that necessary?

      August 21, 2011 at 12:07 pm |
    • Colin

      Rufusclyde – I'd love to comment, but I am not familiar with the terms you are using. I suspect you know much more about the field than I do.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:08 pm |
    • AGuest9

      Awesome, Colin.

      The issue that I have with Fundies is over the whole ID concept. Here we have a "supreme being", or god, if you like, who ginned up the universe/multiverse in 6 days. A TRULY remarkable feat of celestial engineering. Then, he starts on the biologics. Either he/she/it isn't as adept in this area, or isn't as all-knowing as his/her/its followers claim. Ignoring runaway processes like cancers, and diseases that waste tissue and muscle, let's focus on the DESIGN of that which is created in the perfect deity's "image and likeness". First, we are conceived through a rather messy process, identical to other mammals. We form a zygote, which begins to rapidly divide. A human fetus goes through the entire evolutionary process in 9 months, from simple multi-cellular life, through amphibian (some children are born with webbing still between their fingers and toes, like a frog), through mammalia and primates (we even have tails, of which the coccyx is a remainder). The earlier problems don't stop there, however. There are other "spare parts" that malfunction and cause problems – wisdom teeth, tonsils, the appendix. So, if humans were truly designed, as an engineer, I can tell you, we are the result of a very poor designer.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:09 pm |
    • rufusclyde

      @ MrMustachio0001: There are way more transitional species in the fossil record than you seem to realize.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:12 pm |
    • Dr. T Cell

      As a scientist myself, Immunologist, the bible does not categorically speak of the world being 6,000 years old. That conclusion was made by a priest hundreds of years ago. The bible NEVER speaks of the age of the earth. As far as creation in one day, again it is a metaphor as are many many passages of the bible. We use metaphors today all the time. The purpose of the bible is NOT to explain how we all got here as it is briefly mentioned at the beginning with little detail. At the time it was written in a context that people would understand. The reason God gave us His word was to explain to us our nature and sinful ways. To confirm our need for Him. When you all focus on the issues that are not discussed in any detail in the bible, you simply are looking for arguments to denounce it. It IS our nature to look at things, bring out the points we like as to make our point and totally disregard the important main issue. We do it every single day in the media where the main issue is ignored to promote a "talking point" that favors the authors argument or criticism with some they dont like. Now that, is human nature!

      August 21, 2011 at 12:14 pm |
    • rufusclyde

      @Dr. T Cell: Thank you. I would add as an evolutionary biologist myself, we're not looking to denounce the Bible. It is conservative Christianity that is trying to force Biblical creationism, or its nasty offspring, intelligent design, down the throats of the American public in public school science and biology classes. That is where the reactionary stuff you are responding to is based.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:19 pm |
    • speedro

      Haha. Pretty lengthy but spot on man. I particularly like the summary at the end. Well done.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:40 pm |
    • itsjustme

      If we evolved from monkeys...why are there still monkeys?


      August 21, 2011 at 1:13 pm |
    • rufusclyde

      itsjustme If you're descended from your grandparents, how can you and they possibly be alive at the same time? Discuss.

      Regarding your question, speciation via splitting of an ancestral population in two does not require one of the species that splits off to go extinct. It also doesn't require both populations to evolve in the exact same direction.

      August 21, 2011 at 1:16 pm |
    • James

      I like how some people came up with some semi-rational refuatations of bits and pieces of Colin's post. However, nobody could refute all of it other than by saying that it's all an alleghory or God's years are different than our years. The Old Testament doesn't seem all that alleghorical to me. Take Sodom and Gomorrah. There's still no proof these cities even existed. Yet Jesus, in the New Testament, makes reference to them. Did God really destroy 4 cities and all inhabitants yet give us 10 commandments that state it is wrong to kill? So that "alleghory" was meant to teach us what? Hypocrisy?

      And what about the story of Noah? Was that alleghory supposed to teach us that incest is wrong except when God is making a point?

      Eve committing the original sin. Was that supposed to teach us that an all powerful and all knowing God couldn't even predict what his own creation would do, and thus we should never expect to be perfect parents either? And if he knew what each of us would do before we are born as part of his "working in mysterious ways", how can he blame us for the sins he created us to commit?

      And how can there be such a thing as freewill if there's some power out there who knows our every thought and action before they even occur? That doesn't make sense.

      Amd why did God give us a book full of make believe stories and expect us to believe in him based on fantasy instead of just giving us proof? According to the Old Testament, he and his angels used to walk the Earth and had to actually see something in person to know the truth of it. Why would God create an alleghory in which he is seen as far less than omnipotent? Do you really expect someone to believe without fail in someone who contradicts himself repeatedly?

      These are just a few thoughts skimmed off the top of my head. They by no maens mean I don't believe in a god. I just don't believe in the god of the Bible because that God makes no sense whatsoever. And his rebooted religion where people are now rewarded simplly on their ability to believe rather than on the previous vesion where it was based on merit is simply arbitrary and ridiculous. More likely, when humans created the Old Testament, they gravely overestimated mankind's ability to be good to each other. Thus we were given the New Testament where the rules were changed and now no one had to do anything good anymore. They just had to believe. Does that sound like a divine course of action? I suppose it does, if you can't be strong enough to deal with your own mortality. Any good god will judge you based on your actions. So there's no need to believe at all, except that it's in the interest of those wanting power for you to believe. Those same people created Christianity to prey on your fears of death and mortality to control you. Stop being so weak. If there's a good God, he'll be there for you when your time comes.

      August 21, 2011 at 1:46 pm |
    • tallulah13

      Lovely piece of writing, Colin. May I copy and paste that for later use? Of course you'll get full credit. (Also, thank you for mentioning stromatolites. They utterly fascinate me.)

      August 21, 2011 at 1:56 pm |
  4. Rainer Braendlein

    For people, recognizing the sacramental Holy Baptism:

    You have sinned after baptism?

    Just confess your sins to a Christian brother of your congregation. He is allowed to forgive you in God's name:

    Gospel of John, Chapter 20:

    21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace [be] unto you: as [my] Father hath sent me, even so send I you.

    22 And when he had said this, he breathed on [them], and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:

    23 Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; [and] whose soever [sins] ye retain, they are retained.

    Jesus is ready to give you health all the time!

    August 21, 2011 at 11:35 am |
    • disgust

      jesus was gay

      August 21, 2011 at 11:38 am |
    • rufusclyde

      Why do you keep repeating the same logically flawed nonsense. Those sinners in the article are Christians who were baptized. Your one size fits all solution doesn't work.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:39 am |
    • Rainer Braendlein


      There is a lot of false teaching about baptism in the USA. They even re-baptize.

      Re-baptism is a crime.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:44 am |
    • TC

      Ranier only if you area heretical schismatic Lutheran. Only confession to ordained priests is allowed.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:44 am |
    • Atheist

      I was baptized three times-didn't take.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:48 am |
    • rufusclyde

      Ah, yes. If only everyone believed exactly what you believe, the world would be a better place.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:49 am |
    • The Lambly Winged Lion of The Gods Does Roar

      @ Rainer B,,,,,,,,,,,,, I go the direct route to confess to my body's unknown- by-me God and His do-min-ions that do dwell inside me. No sense in confessing one's sins to otherly folks who are or not sinful and in such naturalisms would they mock me in speaking to others about my dastardly deeds!

      August 21, 2011 at 12:24 pm |
    • tallulah13

      My sisters used to "baptize" me all the time when we went swimming in the river as kids. Frankly, I think it was just an excuse to dunk me.

      August 21, 2011 at 2:28 pm |
  5. disgust

    Hey, jesus got it on with john.

    August 21, 2011 at 11:34 am |
    • Dr. T Cell

      Thank you for clearly displaying your immature mind to us all.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:21 pm |
  6. Yminoh

    I believe that Christianity has failed. Let's give science and reason a try. :-/

    August 21, 2011 at 11:34 am |
    • Rainer Braendlein


      No, Christianity works.

      It is only that most people think of any heresy, it would be true Christianity.

      We must rediscover the good old true doctrine.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:41 am |
    • disgust

      xtianity = delusion.. get it right

      August 21, 2011 at 11:45 am |
  7. The Lambly Winged Lion of The Gods Does Roar

    People who are "adjusted" and/or "comforted" with "Po-rn", are not, I repeat, are not social dev-i-ants just because they have an affluency toward "photos" and/or "videos" of las-civ-ious car-nal ambiguousity. People "read" all manner of books. Is the "reading of books" nothing more than bringing information to the reader? Are not videos nothing more than "informational" tools? Those who have their "heads hidden in the sand-piles of uneasiness" are deemed as os-trac-ized lemmings blindly running to and leaping off the cliffs of "dutied" aimlessness. Why are the Curches resonating with such ridiculing perceptions to denegrate a species' willingness toward wanting to know of se-x-ual-isms photographic or video-sense-oh-ramas?

    Intimacy between 2 or more consentualisms,(percieved consent) of adulthood may well gain a deeper felt relationship if consenting parties do partake in "po-rn-ware". Heck, for the 'reclusive' individual such "ographies" be it photos and/or videos gives one or many an avenue with which they can relieve their body's sometimes hard to fullfill "naturalness" tendancies and in likeiwse groups of 2 or more may find sensual revelling upon such "photo-mosiacisms." The Theosophies of se-x-ualism around "Monotheistic" religiosities is likened to non-social falacies of lewed and lascivious "Behaviourisms" unbecoming moral interpretations by godheads of secular revulsionisms be they of monotheistic congruencies.

    August 21, 2011 at 11:33 am |
    • speedro

      Dude, if that is the satire I think it is, you are brilliant.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:47 pm |
  8. DrJStrangepork

    Rules for Attraction were built before religion. Proof is people. Everyone is addicted because of instinct to reproduce. This fight is silly and real. What is funny is how the adult entertainment industry and the industry of religion both use human instinct to carry themselves forward. People must be respectful of each other in this. Some may call viewing p 0rn as cheating, but those should also realize that looking doesn't mean cheating. I see virtual relationship as more problematic to monogamous relationships. I do know that I don't need a really old book or archaic organization to be respectful of my wife and my commitment to her.

    August 21, 2011 at 11:32 am |
    • disgust

      Cults (religions) enjoy control – $ex, food, fear,, all key ingredients to brainwashing.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:36 am |
  9. John

    Nice Liberal Article... I don't think it get anymore left then CNN.

    August 21, 2011 at 11:32 am |
    • rufusclyde

      How is it in any way liberal? By questioning the approach in the first place, rather than doing what you tell them to do?

      August 21, 2011 at 11:35 am |
    • Peace2All


      W T F ?

      August 21, 2011 at 11:36 am |
  10. barberie

    It would be nice if this blog had more articles about other sects than this new cult-of-personality evangelical trend. It's so rare to see an article about faith in church Christ (not carismatic country preachers) founded, Catholicism, or Lutherans or Episcopals. What about exploring the faith of Hindus or Buddhists or Pagans or Wiccans? So many think they have the one true path, but Christ never demanded to be worshipped. He showed what we're capable of becoming, no matter what path we choose. These articles just reinforce that ignorance.

    August 21, 2011 at 11:28 am |
    • rufusclyde

      That would be great. On CNNs old forums, there were ones on religion where such discussions went on daily.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:31 am |
    • disgust

      Muslim/Xtian <– all the same

      August 21, 2011 at 11:32 am |
  11. disgust

    ..Religion sucks. Recently in the news; Pope send vile of dead popes blood to Mexico for the catholics to kiss. How disgusting. Then again, all religion shares the same voodoo.

    I treat religion as p-o-r-n and keep it away from children.

    August 21, 2011 at 11:28 am |
  12. Dan586

    The Bible is more fiction then Playboy. So that means I would trust Playboy before the Bible.

    August 21, 2011 at 11:25 am |
    • rufusclyde

      Yeah, we know you only read it for the articles, nudge, nudge, wink, wink... ;o)

      August 21, 2011 at 11:28 am |
    • Atheist

      Rufusclyde, the most fascinating aspect of our family Bible was not the contradictory theories of creation, but the pics, namely the surprisingly exciting Eve.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:54 am |
  13. Richard T

    That's why God loves us so much. He allows us to make a choice. If you choose not be believe, that's your choice. I know God exists and I can't wait for that great day to come. If you do not believe in the bible and or God, how can you believe in evolution. The latter is more fiction if you ask me..... Again, if you choose not be believe, that's your choice, don't knock my choice because I do not knock yours. As God says, it's not up to us to judge, that's Gods job. Live your life the way you want but one day, you will be touched by Him and everything will change.. YES 🙂

    August 21, 2011 at 11:25 am |
    • Max in NY

      You are the one who believes....the rest of is who don't believe have made a "conclusion" based on evidence...aka NONE for god.

      Just because you dont understand evolution doesn't make it not true. There are still 20% of americans (according to a gallop poll 10 year ago) who still believe the Earth is the center of our solar system. I suppose you are part of that group.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:30 am |
    • barberie

      You should educate yourself about evolution if you truly think it's just a belief. Very sad how far our understanding of science has fallen at a time when we need to be rising as global leaders of it.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:31 am |
    • Johhh


      August 21, 2011 at 11:31 am |
    • disgust

      Why not kill yourself, gets you there faster. Oops, you guys created a sin out of that. You really cover your bases.

      Then again, jesus was mentally ill. He was scared to kill himself, so had the law do it for him. No different than those who point a squirt gun at police to get intentionally shot.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:31 am |
    • Peace2All

      @Richard T

      " That's why God loves us so much. He allows us to make a choice. If you choose not be believe, that's your choice. "

      Good christ... is this more of that "god loves me soooooooooooooooo much that I don't understand, and yet... he lovingly gave me free-will, and if I only 'believe' in him, I will spend eternity in heaven with all of the 'good believing christians.' If not, I will 'burn forever in the lake of fire.'

      I am so sick and tired of this malarkey. You christians that believe this nonsense need to hear yourselves.

      "Think" for once about what you are saying and thinking.


      August 21, 2011 at 11:35 am |
    • AGuest9

      Yes, barberie, this is WHY we have to fight for our childrens' educations every day in this country. People like this and their beliefs will make it so that soon, our biologists will have to learn virology and immunology as an "underground science", because they prove evolution. In Florida, professors teaching evolution have been attacked and had their cars vandalized. Professors in Alabama have been denied tenure and later "let go" for their "belief" in evolution. We desperately need STEM and biology in this country to stay ahead. We won't get it by allowing people to lie and quote fiction to our children.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:42 am |
    • Richard T

      You missed my point.... It's my choice to believe just like it's your choice not to.... We, as Christians are telling those who choose to hear about the Gospel. Just like TV, if you don't like it, turn it off or turn away. I don't knock you, I just choose not to believe you. I belive in God and thats that. All the extra talk about killing ones self and the other stuff is childish don't you think... Again, I'm not knocking you so why are you knocking me??? is it becuase you don't understand Christians and what God stands for? or is it that you choose to do what ever you want. If the latter is true, again, that's your choice.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:43 am |
    • John

      Richard T

      It's time for common sense. When you die you die. Religion is evil. How many men, women and childern have been killed in Gods name? It's time we all grow up and stop looking up for our answers.

      Believe what you want, but your ideas and hate are dying.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:51 am |
    • speedro

      Richard, you would need to educate yourself on the topic of evolution before you can say anything about it. You are a sad reminder of how our society has de-emphasized teaching science to our kids. Evolution is the central guiding principle of all biology, a scientific discipline that is responsible for our successes in medicine and agriculture. It is analagous to the importance of gravity in our understanding of physics. You may object to one or more particular consequences of evolution because they defy the antiquated fairytale you choose to believe in. And you do this rather than face your own intellectual shortcomings (i.e., low self esteem based stubborness). Anyway, if you do not have an understanding of a topic, you have no right to spout off about it, even if you think you do.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:59 am |
    • Atheist

      Yes, Richard T, you ARE "knocking" us. You're trying to have creationism taught as a science. You're killing thousands in Africa in claiming that condom use is sinful. You have kept millions in poverty in support of a church. You're threatening some with Hell for not believing in an egomaniacal God. You have imprisoned the greatest thinkers. You elevate irrationality to such a level that you cannot possibly make informed decisions about matters important here on earth.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:08 pm |
    • Pepper

      OK, Richard, I'll go out on your limb and agree with you – and I applaud your courage to stand up for what you believe. "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth." Genesis 1:1. That's good enough for me.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:13 pm |
  14. Rainer Braendlein

    How to overcome?

    In the USA there is a basic problem (actually a calamity):

    I suppose there is nearly no accurate teaching about Holy Baptism in the USA.

    What is the mystery of Holy Baptism?

    Everybody, believing in Jesus Christ, receives the power to overcome sin at Holy Baptism. That is the reason, why Jesus said the following, recorded in Mark, Chapter 16, Verse 16:

    16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

    Faith and baptism belongs together. Mere faith is nothing and mere baptism is nothing. First the combination makes faith and baptism effective.

    The gospel: Jesus has borne our sins on the cross. Just believe it.

    The Holy Baptism: After you have started to believe, get baptized and receive the releasing power of Christ's death and resurrection. At baptism your old man of sin dies together with Jesus and you resurrect to a new life together with Jesus. That is according to Romans 6.

    Start to believe and get baptized. Thus you will overcome.

    August 21, 2011 at 11:24 am |
    • Rainer Braendlein

      Besides be smart:

      From the above article:

      "Many evangelical pastors say they don’t have a choice. The Internet has made p-orn unavoidable; it’s everywhere. And po-rn, they say, leads to a lack of intimacy in marriage, threatening the biblical mandate to get and stay married."

      I have a proposal: Christians should use the Internet solely at public places like cybercafes or libraries. Public places offer a protection: You are surrounded by many eyes. This eyes will help you to keep away from watching po-rns.

      This lines I wrote for believers, having a shame. It is clear that criminals have no shame, and dare to watch po-rns even at public places)

      August 21, 2011 at 11:26 am |
    • rufusclyde

      You said this already. Given that the article is about Christians dealing with Christians who like p0rn, it's safe to say everyone's baptized.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:30 am |
    • SCAtheist

      So if I go for a dunk in the ocean everthing's cool?

      August 21, 2011 at 11:31 am |
    • rufusclyde

      @SCAtheist. Yes, especially if this dunking occurs during a wipeout, and you pray to the appropriate Hawaiian surf God.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:33 am |
  15. Enough!!

    when will this religious insanity finally stop!!! please really go away jump into a boiling hot volcano and disappear and leave the rest of the world alone already. we dot want you stupid fairy tales we dont need your stupid fairy tales and we are all tired of your stupid fairy tales.

    August 21, 2011 at 11:24 am |
    • OMG!

      You see what i'm saying... Bible failures in 21st century.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:26 am |
    • rightwingwac

      A fairy tail is that man is creating global warming, a fact is that the earth is constantly changing because it's not a fixed ecosystem, a faith is what christianity is based on and the whole fact that you tell Christians to jump in a volcano proves the point. If it's only about right here right now than perhaps you should jump in the volcano because after all, why put up with the difficuties of life. Just unplug and you don' thave to worry about it any more. Or, you can choose to live as good as you can with the FAITH that something greater is out there. Plain and simple, but atheists are so afraid of christian opinions they have become an activist church in themselves. If you don't believe, don't believe but don't even think about telling people they shouldn't. That makes you look really paranoid and weak. Why don't you go after Muslims? Their god tells them to kill us...oh yes they do, it's in their bible. But instead atheists go after christians because of???????? Fear maybe, or maybe because they believe they are so much more intelligent becasue they don't believe in the man in the sky. Who knows, but if you're done with it, be done with it and stop saying you don't care when obviously you do or you wouldn't be taking the time out of your (very limited) time on earth to post opinions about it.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:38 am |
    • rufusclyde

      @ rightwingwac Nope. The fairy tale is thinking that every effect has only one cause. If lowly bluegreen algae can change our early atmosphere from reducing to oxidizing, then why can't humans also affect climate?

      August 21, 2011 at 11:54 am |
    • Pepper

      Come on Enough!, back off here. You're welcome to believe Christian beliefs are stupid fairy tales, but I choose to believe in a God who loves me and has a wonderful plan for my life. If that's a stupid fairy tale in your eyes, so be it. But that doesn't make my stupid fairy tale any more or less stupid than the one you believe in. "Judge not, lest ye be judged."

      August 21, 2011 at 12:23 pm |
  16. Carmelle

    Better read the Phoenix Journals for THE real truth! You'll be shocked!

    August 21, 2011 at 11:22 am |
  17. knmm

    Sin is an addicition

    August 21, 2011 at 11:22 am |
  18. Mark

    Pop culture and the media has done such a good job turning America into one large Ghetto Trailer Park:)

    August 21, 2011 at 11:21 am |
    • HeavenSent


      August 21, 2011 at 11:32 am |
  19. Brad

    The Christians could do something like mind their own business?

    August 21, 2011 at 11:21 am |
    • Kyle

      How is this article saying Christians are doing otherwise? No one is forced to see these counselors (except perhaps pushed by distraught spouses), no one is forced to go to christian websites or conferences. Believe it or not, some of us are happy these resources exist, and that Christians are working hard to bring relational harmony back!

      August 21, 2011 at 11:31 am |
    • Dude

      And maybe the Atheists could stop shoving their views down everyone's throats as well. If EVERYONE stopped telling everyone else how to run their lives the world would be much better off.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:42 am |
    • Pepper

      And you could do something other than read this article and comment on it.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:25 pm |
  20. OMG!

    Maybe christians should downgrade STOCKMARKET because the bible isn't working. People are not following the rules of bible and God's laws. They keep saying to christians, jews, and bible believers "You need to take med" or "Go fix your english grammar" How depressing!!! Look at it. It's nothing like bible.

    Government help people get what they need.
    Gay marriage. Won
    Evolution education. Won
    Adultery. won
    steal. won
    cheat. won
    greed. won
    seperation church and state. won
    Destorying Churches. Won
    Bashing churches. won
    people skip churches. won
    Worshipping an idol. WON.

    abortion will soon be... WON!!!!

    August 21, 2011 at 11:19 am |
    • Enough!!

      I hope you are right about all of this cause the christian fascism is obnoxious and has ruined our society

      August 21, 2011 at 11:26 am |
    • AGuest9

      Evolution education: WON! (Thanks to common sense!)
      Separation of church and state: WON! (Thank you, Mr. Jefferson!)

      Worshiping an idol? (You mean going to church and talking to a cross or a statue?)
      Skipping church? (Why have you been online all morning? P0rn in your other browser window?)
      Abortion? (Better than paying out billions$ in aid, welfare and prisons.)

      August 21, 2011 at 11:30 am |
    • SCAtheist

      I have no idea what you are talking about. That is a rambling mess.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:33 am |
    • Richard T

      But you are wrong. They didn't win..... They just took one step forward. The war is not over, They may have won this battle but they will never win the war...... I know and I believe that God will make it known to all that we, as a people, have failed and need to repent.... To put it in simple terms for those who do not believe. If you are part of a family and you go against the family what happens???? They do one of three things, forgive, forget, or dis-own. God does one of the three if you repent..... and thats forgive...

      August 21, 2011 at 11:33 am |
    • tallulah13

      Well, to be perfectly honest, OMG, I find your English grammar to be very confusing. I honestly can't tell if you are a christian or not.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:34 am |
    • Matt

      Maybe you should put down the Jeebus Juice for a minute and try to remember how to spell. I can't comment as to your point, because you've failed so hard at the written word that it's unidentifiable...

      August 21, 2011 at 11:36 am |
    • rightwingwac

      I think your "english grammar" needs some serious help. You're points are invalid;
      Gar marriage is not won, it's a waste of time in our political system but it's not a battle or argument that has been won or lost.
      Evelution education: are you kidding me? They might try to teach it in the statest school systems but it is not even close to being a dead issue. I'll ask you this...evelution? If man evolved from Apes why are their still Apes? Don't say it's a diffent spiecies because that's never been the scientific argument. Neanderthol maybe, apes? Nope.
      Greed, cheat, steal, won? Really, are you saying that because people do it there is no such thing as surpreme being? If you are I'll stop wasting my time in replying beause then in your oppinion life is doomed. So why go on with life? Think about it, why do you ever do anything nice to someone if it's simply every man for himself. What the hell are we here for if not for something more. One thing is guaranteed in life...we all die. So if that's all we have to look forward to why even bother?
      Answer those questions and then post your somewhat elementary statements.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:47 am |
    • rightwingwac

      I think your "english grammar" needs some serious help. You're points are invalid;
      Gar marriage is not won, it's a waste of time in our political system but it's not a battle or argument that has been won or lost.
      Evelution education: are you kidding me? They might try to teach it in the statest school systems but it is not even close to being a dead issue. I'll ask you this...evelution? If man evolved from Apes why are their still Apes? Don't say it's a diffent spiecies because that's never been the scientific argument. Neanderthol maybe, apes? Nope.
      Greed, cheat, steal, won? Really, are you saying that because people do it there is no such thing as surpreme being? If you are I'll stop wasting my time in replying beause then in your oppinion life is doomed. So why go on with life? Think about it, why do you ever do anything nice to someone if it's simply every man for himself. What the hell are we here for if not for something more. One thing is guaranteed in life...we all die. So if that's all we have to look forward to why even bother?
      Answer those questions and then post your somewhat elementary statements.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:47 am |
    • rufusclyde

      @ rightwingwac: You care completely clueless, and hopelessly indoctrinated with BS, when it comes to understanding evolution. Evolution does not require that ancestral species go extinct when new species evolve. Next?

      August 21, 2011 at 11:52 am |
    • John Richardson

      @rightwingmac If god made man from dirt, why is there still dirt? In any event, the actual answer to your query will be lost on you, but apes and humans had a common ancestor that was indeed more like modern apes in many ways (especially with respect to cognitive development), but identical to no modern species. All evolved, just not in the same direction. Consider an analogy. Early automobile design was obviously based on that of contemporary horse drawn carriages and has since evolved in many different directions to the point that, except for having four wheels, the resemblance to horse drawn carriages is no longer striking at all. But go to the Amish country or the historiic areas of certain cities or parks and, voila, horse drawn carriages are still there! As long as they are viable for some purposes, things don't die out just because other things evolved "past" them in certain ways.

      August 21, 2011 at 11:59 am |
    • rightwingwac

      This is really for "ENOUGH", Christian fascism has ruind our society? Christianity founded this "society" called America. As far as fascism? There is fascism in every sect of life...politics, religion, our school system etc. I think you should say fascism has ruined our society, or is ruining our society. Start there, and then drill down segment by segment. But atheist fascism is equally to blame for societies down turn as anything. Oh yeah, by the way....I hope your ass is at work bright and early on Christmas morning becuase if you really had the nads to practice what you preach you wouldn't accept gifts, give gifts, or take the day off on Christmas. After all, it's a holliday that's sole purpose is to celebrate the birth of something you do not believe in. So I hope you're not a hypocrite and you really set an example for all the good atheists who are out there. And no gifts means for kids as well becaue we wouldn't want to instill any of that bad ol' christian belief into them. They might grow up to care about something and we couldn't have that now could we?

      August 21, 2011 at 12:03 pm |
    • havingFun

      @rightwingwac: you say "What the hell are we here for if not for something more. One thing is guaranteed in life...we all die. So if that's all we have to look forward to why even bother?" So because you are searching for meaning in life, you create this whole fantasy and dogma to justify your existence on earth? With of course no evidence that your fantasy has any truth to it other than that which you ascribe to it? At least with science, we look at empirical evidence, craft a theory that explains the evidence, then continually look to refine the theory as we uncover more evidence to support or refute our theories. When was the last time that religion modified its theory, even though there've been countless opportunities to rethink?

      August 21, 2011 at 12:10 pm |
    • rufusclyde

      @ rightwingwac: All the gift giving stuff associated with Christmas, including Christmas trees, is pagan.

      August 21, 2011 at 12:22 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.