August 28th, 2011
04:56 PM ET
My Take: God no longer in the whirlwind
Editor's Note: Stephen Prothero, a Boston University religion scholar and author of "God is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions that Run the World," is a regular CNN Belief Blog contributor.
By Stephen Prothero, Special to CNN
As I am riding out Hurricane Irene on Cape Cod, I cannot help thinking about how differently New Englanders in colonial times interpreted these natural disasters. While we speak of the eye of the hurricane, they were ever mindful of the eye of a God who was watching over them, and sending storms their way as punishment for their collective sins.
A fierce debate among academics about secularization theory–the view that societies will become less religious as they modernize–seems to have been won by the skeptics.
Yes, secularization of a sort is happening, but only in certain places (western Europe, most notably). And it seems to be reversible (see the United States today vs. the United States in the 1970s). So simple versions of secularization theory seem just plain wrong.
However, one place where American society, at least, plainly seems to be growing less religious is in the realm of natural disasters.
When the Great Colonial Hurricane raced up the east coast and lashed New England in August 1635, its 130 mph winds and 21-foot storm surge were almost universally viewed in supernatural rather than natural terms—as a judgment of God on the unfaithful.
We still have Puritans among us today, of course.
Pat Robertson is notorious for turning natural disasters such as the Haiti earthquake and Hurricane Katrina into supernatural communications—God’s curse on Haiti or New Orleans for bad religion or widespread abortions.
And on the radio a couple days ago I heard a talk show host suggest that the one-two punch of the recent earthquake and hurricane were two thumbs down from God on the leadership of Barack Obama.
Still, American society as a whole no longer interprets natural disasters as signs of some coming apocalypse or evidence of some past misdeeds. And those that do (Robertson, for example) we generally regard as cranks and outliers—relics of a bygone age.
Some say science and religion are engaged in a battle for the soul of America. I don’t buy that.
I know there are bitter divisions over evolution and creationism, for example. But there are all sorts of spiritual arenas where science is mum, and vice versa. Science and religion run on parallel tracks far more often than those tracks intersect.
Hurricanes and earthquakes are one arena, however, where the language of science has almost entirely routed the language of theology.
Psalms 107:25-33 reads: “For he commandeth, and raiseth the stormy wind, which lifteth up the waves thereof. . . . He turneth rivers into a wilderness, and the watersprings into dry ground."
Today, the overwhelming majority of Americans—including the overwhelming majority of American Christians—believe that when God has something to say He speaks in less dramatic ways, including the still small voices in our hearts and the slightly louder voices of the preachers in our pulpits.
When it comes to earthquakes and hurricanes, however, our authorities are geologists and meteorologists. Most of us interpret these events not through the rumblings of the biblical prophet Jeremiah or the poetry of the Book of Revelation but through the scientific truths of air pressure and tectonic plates.
As a result of this sort of secularization, we are much better at predicting the course of hurricanes. The Great Colonial Hurricane of 1635 arrived as a surprise and took many lives with it, including, according to the report of the Massachusetts governor John Winthrop, those of eight Native Americans taken by the storm surge while “flying from their wigwams.”
So we are better prepared, thank science. Our stories are far less dramatic, however. The overwhelming majority of Americans believe in God. But their God no longer acts out his fury as in Bible days. Our storms have not yet been tamed. But our God has.
The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Stephen Prothero.
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.
I was a believer, raised in a Christian family. I was taught not to question but to accept whatever the Church elders said.
But then I started to read the Bible and listen to what was being said with an open mind. I noticed that the Bible was full of contradictions and that it can be interpreted in whatever way one wanted. I noticed that the indeed Christians did exactly this to justify their actions and beliefs and that these actions and beliefs were frequently self serving.
It's not easy to realize that what you've been taught is wrong–especially when you are threatened by eternal damnation by the Almighty no less. But the more I thought about it the more I realized that religion exists to serve the priest class and that religion has outgrown whatever utility to society it once had. Humankind has unshackled itself from the chains of God and has made amazing progress!
My search was long and winding. I have had to admit to myself many times what I thought was true wasn't. Mine has always been a search for truth. Before I had complete belief in God. Truth came when I no longer believed in God, especially the Christian God, and that I must depend on God for my very existence. You see we as humans have the ability to think for ourselves and do not require a priest class to tell us how or what to believe. Then the world becomes a beautiful and amazing place. It does not require God at all! Then pieces of the world fit together in amazing ways.
I did not search because I was hurting or needing some kind of crutch. I searched because Christianity insisted I was sinful and totally beholden to God, as interpreted by the priest class, and that I was nothing without religion. I could not nor would not accept this. I love my life and world and no longer feel the need to deprecate it by calling it sinful.
I could go on and on but CNN would never let me write a long enough post to explain all.
That's funny, Noregon, my search for Truth took me in the exact opposite direction – from a scientific based atheism to Christianity. I am not hostile to science now – I still consider it to be factual; I simply do not consider it to be Truth.
I get it. My journey has been very much like yours. I started with a rebellion against organized religion and dogmatic authoitarianism, and in the end completely left the church. In my case, though I became an agnistic for a long time, I was never truly an atheist, because I always continued to pray. After nearly 20 years, I found a way to return, integrity intact. To a different denomination, yes. Still in disagreement about some minor points of theology, yes. But I have rejoined the community of faith and I am very happy to be here. I guess my point is, don't give up on the possibility of faith.
Congratulations, most people never grow out of their childhood indoctrination. Be glad that you are strong enough to not be one of them.
Wow, truth with a capital "T", you just blew my mind.
Noregon... CONGRATS !!! What I find disturbing are those who 'weaponize their religion' to give them a false ego boost with the illusion they are better than others or even worse, they feel compelled to impose their brainwashing onto others. We see it with politicians trying to jockey the seat in the White House as POTUS. It is very disturbing.
My experience was similar. When I found truth it lead me out of Christianity.
We all come from different backgrounds and have different experiences. People just interpret the world in different ways.
i'm sorry...that you did not find God in search..He was there but you were blinded by your experiences..
God's Word is infallible but sadly we are not..
There is a scripture that states we must study ourselves approved...that means we must stop allowing people to read and interpert the Word of God for us.....
We are supposed to read the Word of God with an open heart and mind..to seek God in prayer so that we may rightly divide the Word of God...
Any religion can take a scripture and conform it to what they want but the key is that we are supposed to conform to the Word of God...the process of becoming closer to God is not always easy..but the reward is great...
Continue to seek Him and you will find Him..He is waiting for you with open arms...there are bad Christians out there..just as there are bad Jews or Muslims or Atheists...please don't let that block your search
I pray that your eyes and your heart will be open to Him...remember He is faithful..His Mercy and Grace are new everyday
@ SMH: "i'm sorry...that you did not find God in search..He was there but you were blinded by your experiences.."
You have to be kidding. I have this terrible feeling that you use that as an argument for just about anything.
Like, My story too
Recurring thread that I must try to address.....
God...wait you don't believe in Him...so I guess this is a mute point..but I'll address it anyway
Bad things happen to everyone..nonbelievers...Jews..Muslim..Buddists...Christians...no one is exempt..
God allows things to happen for many purposes but two of the main ones are this......either to draw you closer to Him...or to try to get your attention....
He knows the number of every hair on your head...He knows when you are hurting...He keeps everyone of your tears...He knew you before you were even formed inside your mother...
The problem is from the beginning to now is that people don't want to be held accountable..we want to do whatever makes us happy..rich..content..pleased....and because those things may be in direct contention with the Word of God...people have decided to delcare it false..to say there is no God..so they can be comfortable...
Miracles happen everyday even within the storm but you don't/won't see it because it will disprove everything...
I'm truly sorry that you feel God would give a child cancer...or take a mother when her kids are young..or cause a father to be killed in war...
No one can understand God..that's the whole point..He requires faith...
God loves you with an everlasting love and He desires that no one be lost..but that choice is up to you..He will not force you to have a relationship with Him...can He stop bad things...He can and He does...He is in the whirlwind...
Just remember this..He is also a God that is also displeased with rebellion..and soon He will grow tired...then you will see wrath....
Amen, SMH, right on the money. Keep on posting!
What the heck is a mute point? Anyways, thanks for trying to address that with your inane babbling.
Ah yes, the old familiar "God loves you so much he will destroy you" argument.
Amen Brother, I stand in agreement with you. God has given the foresight to see his mighty hand at work. but for the unbeliever and the wicked there is no knowledge of these things.
Thanks for the earlier reply to this post.
Keep the faith.
@ahhh...thanks for pointing out my mistake...seriously...what would I do without your wealth of knowledge???
I meant moot..no longer valid..
We as humans either know anger...gentleness/love or hate...peace or anxiety...we as humans cannot understand that God is all of those things at the same time because to us it is not possbile...His emotions are way beyond are ability to understand...and when we don't understand we decide to discredit it...we decide if we can't apply the "scientic method" to God then He can't be real. Just as a Father rebukes His children...God will rebuke us...so it is ridiculous to say the same God that loves me will destroy me....that can't be further from the Truth...Jesus died for us that we may have everlasting life....but rebellion will not be tolerated forever...so we destroy ourselves not God...He continues to give us chances to turn towards Him and when we don't we want to blame Him...well blame yourself..you are the one who is ignoring Him...
I guess the best part...is all the ellipses...for no reason whatsoever...that make it hard...to read anything you post.
@SMH, or anyone who would like to answer if he's not checking this one anymore,
The way most of the modern Christian religions are written/structured, "God" does not just want faith, he DEMANDS it. It's not enough to live a good life, and do your best to live in the world, you must praise him and thank him, for his "blessings." My question- why do people CHOOSE to follow a deity who holds that over people's heads, but refuses to give any real proof, or take any real action. A god who expects everything, but gives real evidence of nothing, is a tyrant. Why would someone choose to follow a tyrant?
What makes you think that God "demands" anything...because you yourself & most of the others posting do not believe in Him. so how would you know what He demands. True I am to praise and worship Him without ceasing..but not because He demands it but because I want to. See we have this personal relationship..He loves me with an everlasting love and I love Him with my whole heart, soul and mind. So just as I love and praise my kids/husband, I give Him nothing less.
I have proof every single day when my heart beats, when I breath..when I look @ my kids, or see a sunrise or sunset. His creation surrounds me, His peace is in me. Simply stated "I am His and He is mine", He will never leave me or forsake.
Do you think people die before rejecting Christ just because they feel like dying or be tortured for the feel of it? Seriously...stop insulting people just because you don't believe.
God no longer in the whirlwind....says who, you??? And who are you???? God says in His Word that he is in the whirlwind and EVERYTHING is in His power and His control and there is NOTHING that is out of His control. And I'm to believe you???? You're just flesh that will return to the dust who knows nothing of the power of God.
Amen, Concerned. Keep up the good posts!
If god controls everything why do Christians suffer just as baddy from natural disasters as everyone else? Isn’t god supposed to be protecting his flock? And what about god answering prayers, there’s a lot of Christians in the path of that hurricane that didn’t get their prayers answered.
God says? or just some men said many years ago that god said... god does not speak
This makes more sense than your last post.
This is the way Jesus wants you to treat your family.
If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.
You need to look at the entire context of Christ's teachings, wb4. What's being said is that our love for Christ must be so great, that our love for others must seem as hate by comparison.
One of the problems with understanding the Bible is that it was not written in our language. The word "hate" as used in this verse is not a correct translation. "Disregard" would be better. His point was that those who wanted to follow him should be prepared to give their complete loyalty – otherwise, they should simply go on about their lives and save themselves a lot of grief.
Good point, Non.
Don't twist the words :). Jesus is talking about priorities. Remember, the 5th commandment is "honor thy father and mother."
Humans will cycle the teachings of a dead master through their egos to fit as they wish. Plus, that is a lot of strange use of grammar so it's open to many interpretations. People don't talk like that. It's grossly outdated material. Humans need UPGRADES in this modern age.
For all those Atheist and None believers, you don’t see germs with you Naked eyes, yet you believe it's there. Because of the help of microscopes which peels away the limitations of your eyes. Likewise you can’t see God because of your limitation in this physical realm. But there is a greater microscope called the spiritual realm that magnifies everything that you feel and sense in this world. The thing is you can’t put this under a glass and when you get a chance to see it ,you can’t come back and tell everyone of your non-believing friends "it real so believe". You will see God and the day you do, you will regret every single profane word you have spoken and that day you can’t change your mind because it's too late. I pray you won’t get to that point because Jesus truly does love you and died for you just believe and be saved, but sadly I already know your answer. Because you’re pride won’t allow you to believe in fairly man in the sky who created you and all you see, who came to earth as a babe died on the cross for your sins, for you just to believe and be save. Nooo!! Such smart people like you have to much SMARTS in your noggin to explain everything away. Too mythical you say? too fairytalish you say? to ancient and out of date you say? . Since you Atheist got all the brains and "intelligence", I challenge you to imagine GOD away and see if HE goes like HOLLYWOOD portrays.
Since he was never there, do I really need to imagine?
I believe in germs because they have a physical effect on me even though I can't see them with my naked eye. I have yet to be effected in anyway by god unless I want to take a series of coincidences as "fate" and "divinely inspired"
You don't make any sense. We don't just "believe" germs are there. We found out they are there through science and now it's fact and accepted. As soon as we can do the same for god, then I'll accept "he's" there; otherwise, there is no purpose in simply believing in "him".
If Jesus loves me, why will I regret not believing him. And if I did believe in God, wouldn't the Hindu god be upset? Or Zeus? Or Buddha? Odin? Frankly that's too many to worry about, so I'll just go about my business. I'll understand the things I can understand, and have the courage to say I don't understand the things I don't. A god that punishes someone for not being aware of them is not a god I want to spend eternity with.
There's that "pride" and "intelligence" thing again.
Why do christians always resort to demeaning knowledge?
I think it's because they have a nagging fear themslves and it's called doubt.
I don't believe in germs, I know they exist, because you can see them, and you can see their effects, and you can prove that they produce those effects. "God" is not the same. You can't see a god, you can attribute actions to them, but they're generally not the most likely cause so it doesn't prove their existence. Your recommendation for seeing them is to "believe harder". Forcing the mind to accept a concept that doesn't make sense is not proof (nor is it generally particularly good idea).
I have never, and will never, fear the retribution of any deity. For starters it's hard to fear something you don't believe in (though I will admit I move down the dark empty hallway of my upstairs pretty fast after I've watched a horror movie). But moreover, because I am confident that I have led a good life, I am comfortable with who I am, and because I am quite certain that if there are gods who kick-started this universe, they are nothing like the gods from the "holy books". No being that powerful could be as petty, cruel, and illogical as the stories humans tell would require them to be. I trust that if there are gods, and they do waste their time judging people (why?), they would base on quality of life, not on any silly human belief structure. I give them more credit then that (in theory).
Can your ficticious bible mumblings. You don't even know how true THE WORD actually is. I grew up around religion and now I see the world in a different light. These are NATURAL disasters, they're not punishments from "GOD". There is no rapture, but there is time and time controls everything NOT "GOD". We die, when we die. If it's our time then so be it. Just be happy you have one more day of life when you wake up.
" But there is a greater microscope called the spiritual realm that magnifies everything that you feel and sense in this world. The thing is you can’t put this under a glass and when you get a chance to see it ,you can’t come back and tell everyone of your non-believing friends "it real so believe"."
Umm... huge difference here... I CAN see germs by removing limitations on my sight... I can't remove the limitations that the "spiritual realm" has on my eyes because I can't remove things that do not exist.
Hey, I have some lovely snake oil to sell you. It's going cheap, only a few million. You'll just love this snake oil. Guess who else realized they could sell snake oil to the ignorant masses with stories of imagination? L Ron Hubbard and Joseph Smith.
With my naked eyes I cannot see germs and I cannot see god; but, I can see a physical microscope. I can test microscope and it always makes small things bigger. Other people can test the microscope and we all see the same things. I cannot see your spiritual microscope and it seems that everyone that looks through it sees something different.
Germs can be seen through a microscope.. god cannot be seen period. your comments make god less believable
Why is everyone so certain of the existence or non existence of a higher being? What happened to saying we don't know? I can't prove it either way. To me, the more certain a person is on this question, the more ignorant they sound.
The purple unicorn in my closet told me through mental telepathy that there is no god. Funny thing is that every time I open the closet door the unicorn disappears.
Sounds absurd but then there is just as much evidence for any god as there is for my unicorn.
First of all, there are lots of people that say the "just don't know". Regardless, the point is that believers simply have to believe, and that's really the only thing they need for certainty. For athiests, there is simply no evidence of "his" existence, so it's not really a certainty of non-existence, it's just a lack of evidence suggesting "he" exists.
Your question has a complex answer. I'll try to be brief.
COmmon sense dictates that we should only believe assertions when there is evidence to support them. Arbitrary claims are not true until proven false, they are false until proven true (or at least until there is enough evidence to make it plausible). The assertion "God exists" is no different. There is NO evidence for the existence of a god or gods (that's where faith comes in), and so it is not reasonable to believe in one.
Atheists don't claim that we KNOW with ABSOLUTE certainty that there is no god. To say that would imply, ironically, that we have god-like knowledge about the non-existence of god. No human being has god-like knowledge about anything. That's why it is not reasonable to use "absolute, god-like knowledge" as the standard for human knowledge.
Atheists claim that, given the inherent limitations on human knowledge, there is no evidence supporting the existence of a god, and therefore we reject the claim that there is one. False until proven true. We 'know" that there is no god in the context of limited human knowledge. I for one am always open to new evidence supporting god's existence, but until then I reject the notion. Common sense. I do NOT say that I'm "uncertain", because by that standard am would have to be uncertain about EVERYTHING. This demonstrates that the word "certain" must be redefined in HUMAN terms. I am as certain that there is no god as a human being can be. And THAT is how I define "certain". So, yes, I am CERTAIN there is no god. But that could change if new evidence becomes available.
@Sid said it very well. Atheists are "certain" there no god in the same sense that you are certain there is no Zeus or spaghetti monster in your garage. Technically possible but very unlikely. You don't say that "there could be a spaghetti monster in the garage, no one has proven it either way, so let's be agnostic about it".
this makes sense... we just dont know and most likely never will
Another Anti-Christian CNN classic. Just because we can predict Hurricanes doesn't mean that they aren't God sent. Even if in the future we can stop or destroy them it doesn't mean that what caused them isn't divine. God is the controller of all unknown and manager of all known. So when a man in virginia that stole a car then has it washed away, he can still say "I guess God really didn't want me to have that one". Even the great scientists believe that they aren't minimizing God's creation, there just discovering the strings that the puppeteer pulls.
wait...so you're saying God created a devistating hurricane that killed 23 innocent people so some guy wouldnt steal someones car??? You mean to tell me you're not bothered by that statement? You sir are a looney.
you got it right there. He is the controller of the unknown. that is how the idea of gods came about to begin with, out of ignorance.
Amen, Gk. Keep on posting!
Are you sure you were reading the same piece I was? I see nothing "anti-Christian" in this piece, nor "anti-God". It's a man rendering an opinion regarding knowledge of a thing taking away the supersti-tions of the past. There is nothing about predicting or destroying natural disasters, only examining the reasons behind natural disasters.
Take a deep breath and re-read.
oh and by the way, this is not an "anti-christian" article by CNN. This, good sir, is what is called journalism, reporting on topics in a non-biased fashion. You may view this as "anti" because you are pro, that does not mean in ANY way that the facts in the article are not true. The article is describing how people are finally waking up and realizing that yes natural disasters MIGHT be caused by a celestial being but that again does not mean in ANY way that it is because the human race has sinned or committed some specific act that warrented a natural disaster as punishment. Please for the love of whatever God you believe in stop playing victim like CNN is out to get your religion and convert people away, you just sound like a lunatic waiving a book.
petercha is agreeing to any nonsense as long as it sounds Christian. LOL
sorry for repost. i meant as reply
To God death isn't as serious as it is to us. What you do with your life is far more important to him than the date of your Earthly death, your going to die anyways. It's not 1 man, 23 people died that affected the lives of millions.
The neutrality of CNN's Belief Blog is usualy off. In this article are a few examples.
1 "However, one place where American society, at least, plainly seems to be growing less religious is in the realm of natural disasters." //// An unsupported statement. One quote could help
2 "Still, American society as a whole no longer interprets natural disasters as signs of some coming apocalypse or evidence of some past misdeeds. " /// Conclusion statement of (1) unattempted to be proven. Notice the elevation in the statement: plainly to as awhole. This elevation usually occurrs when the writer asumes the reader is convinced.
3 "Hurricanes and earthquakes are one arena, however, where the language of science has almost entirely routed the language of theology." /// Another statement followed, not by supporting evidience, just poor evidence favoring the contrary.
4 "Today, the overwhelming majority of Americans—including the overwhelming majority of American Christians—now believe that when God has something to say He speaks in less dramatic ways." ///// Here the reader continues to expand on our presumed conviction.
5 "As a result of this sort of secularization, we are much better at predicting the course of hurricanes." /// Cause-effect statement that implies the reverse is negetive. Meaning that a religous society would be worse at predicting the path of hurricanes. The Auther attempted to combine this with his escalation.
6 "So we are better prepared, thank science" ///// while a fine statement on it's own, the auther offers it a a conclucion statement of (5)
7 "Our storms have not yet been tamed. But our God has." A most Anti-Christian statement if there was any. Unsupported. Total belive in conviction. Raw escalation from previous sentence. Not even Hitler the Wheatherman would say this unless he was in a room full of atheists.
Once in for all...the Bible is a fiction book. Pure and simple. It is not the word of god...not the testament of jesus..it is a blueprint for socio-economic control created by the Roman empire, and the leading religous leaders of the times. They took a popular hippie revolutionary named jesus, made him a martyr, and then created a book of Harry Potter proportions to sell to the masses who find it easier to swallow than reality. Want to know the single greatest evil in the world? The bible. Stifling scientific thought and advancement for over a thousand years.
You make that statement as if it is fact. The romans had nothing to do with writing the old testament so you might want to go back to school and actually learn something before you come out and try to bash Christianity.
Exactly why would something "created by the Roman empire, and the leading religous leaders of the times" be illegal, underground, and persecuted for the first 300 years of its existence? The social and physical costs to being a Christian no doubt outweighted any socioeconomic benefit to being a follower of Christ for 300 years until Constantine. No historian would debate that.
Second of all, the bible was not a book. It was not canonized until much later. It was separate manuscripts for the early church. It's not like there were ESVs and New King James' in the bookstore.
Third of all, Jesus was not a "popular revolutionary." First of all, His unpopularity directly stemmed out of the fact that He would NOT lead a societal revolution for the Jews under Roman rule. Second of all, He died alone – clearly NOT popular. It's not as if at His death, His followers led a big revolt.
Amazing how the Roman Empire created a book, of which 3/4's existed prior to their existence.
I know lots of intelligent atheists... alas you are not one of them.
I can take your point on the Dribble being fiction, but written by the Romans? At least find out where the Dribble comes from before arguing over it.
Your post is some serious fiction. You say the Romans created the Bible? Are you aware that 3/4 of the current canon was written before Roman times? Are you aware that the stories of the Apocrypha and to a lesser degree the New Testament include stories of opposition to Roman authority. If the Romans created the Bible, then why did they spend three centuries trying to eradicate Christianity before eventually adopting it. I do not demand that you believe what I believe, but I do insist that you not lie about the origins of Judaism and Christianity.
What's sad is this poster clearly has no idea about Christianity. It's clear he's never studied any theology, comparative religion, history, or the bible at all. But he makes these generalizations based on what a liberal, secular world has fed him, and what he has blindly accepted
The bible is a tool with more than one use. Some people choose to use it to seed evil. A great many people have been shaped by the parables in the bible, which has improved our civilization. Others have used the bible to cope with the hardships of life. The same can be said for other religious texts, but my point is that faith should never be more important than reason.
DING DING DING DING ... WE HAVE A WINNER PEOPLE !!! Oh the light of reality shines so bright. I think the Christians are still squinting though. OPEN YOUR EYES PEOPLE ... unless you are truly that brainwashed and addicted to your religion.
If a man commits adultery with another man's wife both the adulterer and the adulteress must be put to death
Make a point next time.
Just one of many Bible Rules that people simply don't live by anymore. Christians are HYPOCRITES
Children who curse their father or mother must be put to death
Praise gods love!
Kill everyone who does not believe in God
and then humans found how to combat smallpox, polio, TB, famine etc. Soon we will figure out how to prevent hurricanes and god will be needed no more
YUP... just more of the ridiculous and outlandish ILLEGAL rules of the outdated Bible. Good Job!!! Lets read some more. They are hilarious.
Jesus' new command- is the Christian way-
Matthew 22:36-40 Love God and Love your neighbor
Although it is pleasant and convenient to believe that science and religion answer different questions and do not intersect or conflict, it happens to be just false.
Certainly, there are some questions that science is unable to answer as of now (although the reach of science is far greater than what you might think, and includes feelings and beliefs).
Religion, on the other hand, does not answer ANY questions at all. Its answer to basically any question is "because God wanted it that way." This is a non-answer. It is foolish to think that religion answers some kind of spiritual questions. Religion also makes a lot of claims about the physical world and why things happen, well within the purview of science, and all of them happen to be baseless.
In conclusion, (1) Religion and science are do intersect and conflict (2) They are incompatible, and (3) Religion is based on blind faith and does not require validation, verification, or evidence. Science is the opposite.
I agree with this utterly and completely. The problem is, I've tried this argument before and most religious people just blow it off.
RELIGION RELIES ON PEOPLE'S SUSPENSION OF DISBELIEF ... IT FEEDS ON THOSE WHO DON'T HAVE HEALTHY SKEPTICISM. IT USES BRAINWASHING CONTROL FACTORS TO KEEP PEOPLE IN A STATE OF GUILT, SHAME AND CONTROL... IT'S A TOTAL SCAM
Kill everyone who works on the Sabbath
1 Peter 1:24-25
I notice that CNN chose to run this article when a hurricane hits a mostly liberal area.
You're so right! It's not current at all, it's just the fact that it started in NC and VA (which is TOTALLY liberal) and headed north. Gosh, I hate it when CNN reports on a completely relevant and current event because it suits their liberal agenda!
@Laughing... Virginia is liberal?!!! Clearly, you've never been here. Perhaps you should go back and research the commonwealth's elections history, though I suppose that would interfere with your ridiculous conspiracy theory.
1) I live in VA
2) I guess my sarcasm wasn't strong enough on the internet, next time i'll do a better job, I promise.
Last I checked, NC just got nicked on the Outer Bank, but it was the liberal states in the Northeast (NY, NJ, CT) that took the brunt of Irene.
Last I checked Irene was downgraded to a tropical storm by the time it reached the northern US and the issues they're having stem from not being prepared for such a massive storm. That is news worth reporting because storms of this size and nature usually don't make it that far north, vs. in NC where they can experience them more often and are more prepared for it. It's the same reason why the 5.9 earthquake last week got so many ratings but the 2 equal earthquakes in CA went unnoticed.
I would reccomend stop trying to read a liberal agenda into everything on CNN, sometimes they're just reporting on the news of the day, geddit?
It's hard to get the Dumbest Post award of the day in here, but you did it anyway. Congrats.
We got rain in TX today. Gov. Goodhair's prayer finally worked. God just didn't like him enough to make it work faster. I guess I should have prayed for rain.
God has never poured out His wrath on this Earth since Jesus death and resurrection. However, Satan has been at work. God will one day pour out His wrath on non-believers and that will be like nothing seen on Earth. Read the Bible; it's all in there.
I wish I could "like" your post, Angelo.
whats wrong with the d0uche pouring out his wrath? he doesn't sound so loving or great, just sounds like a spoiled child.
Refresh my memory. Is he going to be punishing the Evangelical non-believers, the Mormon non-believers, the Episcopalian non-believers, the Catholic non-believers, the Jehovah's Witness non-believers, the Christian Scientist non-believers, the Lutheran non-believers, the Methodist non-believers, the Baptist non-believers, the Seventh-Day Adventist non-believers, the Apostolic non-believers, or will he just say "screw it" and fry everyone?
Just because "it's all in there" (Bible) doesn't make it plausible.
I hope god takes you away so we can live in peace
The Goddess forgives you Angelo, she won't even destroy you for being a blasphemer, That's because she's only as real as your god, and he's only as real as your belief. If you must chose a deity to believe in why would you chose such a mean one as the bible's god, there are many options and many are rather fun loving and do not require that you hate and kill your neighbor. Choose wisely or remain an unbeliever but these mean bloody gods must go. Silly people.
BRING IT ON!
what is even better is that not only now is a god not controlling the weather or nature, it never did when genesis or psalms were written, not during colonial times, not ever.
Imaginary friends cannot control anything outside of the human mind.
Why is America the only modern society on the planet that still believes god is responsible for weather? It's embarrassing.
Embarrassing??, God is all powerful, he controls all, when you die you will see God...
Because Europe had 2000 years to come to their senses. We've only had 200. We're repeating their mistakes, and if we're not careful, we'll erase our founding fathers' vision that Europe has finally realized.
Cool, Rick. Can't wait. Meanwhile, I'll side with people who done the hard research to find the truth instead of surrendering my intellect to a 5,000 year old text about middle eastern sheep herders.
How do you know that America is the only country mcore?? Did you do a poll of all modern countries in the world, did you find a study that was done on the subject? As usual, the people (like yourself) that claim they use science and facts do nothing of the sort. You just toss out a statement as if it is fact and expect others to agree with it.
The general consensus is that the less educated a country, the less they believe in science. This means we're a stupid country, in general.
I have a pet hypothesis. It goes like this...
People have a tendency to attribute human traits to disasters, just like they attribute human traits to animals. But it's a bit different. In animals, they assume that the animal has the human trait(s). Conversely, in disaster scenarios, they assume that the human trait(s) in the disaster are transferred from -actual- humans that're somehow connected to the disaster. The -actual- humans might be sinners. They might be wishcasters. They might even be sinister government agents that're directing the fate of the disaster so that it fulfills their goals. They might be a newcomer that doesn't belong and everyone already suspects to be a bad influence. Etc. Whatever they're, they're to blame for the disaster.
The key idea to take away from this is that people have a inner impulse to believe that humans are to blame for disasters. Perhaps we have a inner impulse to believe all bad things somehow, someway, are the result of humans?
I would agree. This instinct to attribute cause or plan to everything comes, like everything else, from evolution. If you couldn't tell if something was caused by human or not, it safer for your survival to assume that it is. You will have a lot of false positives, and you will be taking many unnecessary evasive and preventive actions that are ineffective. However, you will not have any false negatives – you will not miss any events that _are_ caused by humans and should be prevented to ensure your survival. Eliminating these false negatives (being careless when others are trying to harm you and ignoring them as random events) is crucial for survival, and hence the instinct.
i agree with the opinion mostly. God is in what speaks the loudest to you. If it is a storm so be it. If it is a dream, recession, baby's death, war, losing a job. God wants what is best in for you. Even though you do not even know what is best for you.
Man, guess those kids with leukemia really didn't understand that what was best for them was a miserably short life, full of unnecessary, torturous pain.
remember, suffering is good and to be praised. So those kids with leukemia were getting the best treatment by god possible (according to the bible)
I'll be happy to go into a long conversation about the various intricacies of my personal beliefs if you'd like and we can debate the value of divine plans: but for now I just want to say thank you. You have basically summarized why I have never worried about gods. There is no sign they're real, so I don't believe in them. If they are real they are clearly either impotent, and we don't need them; or malicious, and I don't want them. Any diety whose plans involve anything you listed, is pretty much terrible, and worthy of scorn.
If it is a storm so be it. If it is a dream, recession, baby's death, war, losing a job. God wants what is best in for you. Even though you do not even know what is best for you.
Why is what is best for us always so painful? This loving father makes me wish we were all orphans. All the old desert gods are sadistic....I would prefer one with more laughter in her...I'd say to hell with the god of leukemia and war. Even if it is the best for us.