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How does a Christian support the death penalty?
A protestor holds a sign calling for Georgia state officials to halt the scheduled execution of convicted cop killer Troy Davis.
September 23rd, 2011
10:10 AM ET

How does a Christian support the death penalty?

By John Blake, CNN

(CNN) - The debate over the execution of Troy Davis may have ended in the legal system, but it's continuing in the faith arena.

A day after Davis was executed in Georgia for the 1989 shooting death of Mark MacPhail, an off-duty police officer, one contributor to The Daily Beast asked this question:

How can a “pro-life” Christian support the death penalty?

It’s a question that will probably find its way into some sermons this Sunday. Lee Siegel, though, didn’t want to wait that long to dive into the debate. He says in his piece for The Daily Beast that Davis’ conviction has a “thick cloud of doubt hanging over it.”

Siegel didn’t go into those details, but they’re well known by now. Since Davis' 1991 trial, seven of the nine witnesses against him have recanted or contradicted their testimony. The U.S. Supreme Court ordered a district court in Savannah to review his claims of innocence in 2009, but District Judge William Moore ruled the following year that the evidence did "not require the reversal of the jury's judgment."

Doubts about Davis’ guilt persisted, though, and helped draw international attention to his case. Pope Benedict, South African anti-apartheid leader Desmond Tutu and former President Jimmy Carter said the execution should have been called off.

Siegel says when he heard Wednesday that Davis’ case was in the hands of the Supreme Court, he thought “justice would be done” because three of the court’s justices are “devout” Catholics (actually five of the court’s members are Catholic).

Siegel then invokes the concept of Catholic “seamlessness.”

According to that doctrine, a moral stance that places human life above any consideration has to be consistent with other situations in which human life is at issue. If you are pro-life, you must also be against assisted suicide, against war in most cases, and absolutely against the death penalty, for the sake of moral consistency.

Catholics are Christians, which leads to another question: How can a Christian justify support for the death penalty?

Some Christian supporters of the death penalty cite the biblical call for an “eye for an eye.” Yet that passage comes from the Old Testament. Christian doctrine is ultimately based on the New Testament and the actions of Jesus.

What do you think? Is there anything in the New Testament that justifies support for the death penalty?

- CNN Writer

Filed under: Belief • Bible • Catholic Church • Christianity • Church • Courts • Culture wars • Death • Ethics • Pope Benedict XVI

soundoff (485 Responses)
  1. 1coin2sides

    Yes, the Old Testament says "an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth." But when Jesus quoted this Scripture in His own sermon, He added: "BUT I TELL YOU, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you." [Emphasis mine] Jesus doesn't say "but" very often, so when He does, it requires attention. If we love our enemies, we cannot kill them–war and execution included.
    As for the comments about hypocrites who can't keep their own rules straight, you're right. That's why we needed Jesus to take our penalty of death for our wrongdoings. The church, as is commonly said, is a hospital for the sick, not a shrine for the saints. We ARE screw-ups, Christian or not. We're ALL hypocrites. None of us has a unified religio-philosophy. Without Jesus, we'd all be sentenced to death.

    September 23, 2011 at 11:51 am |
    • Trobe

      So, your all-powerful creature that can do anything needed to kill this jesus scapegoat why again?

      The scapegoat thing was stolen from earlier myths, and the bible is loaded with many internal contradiction. You can also find support for all manner of horrors in it. Get over your religion and your silly book and do some thinking. Morals should not be dictated by your silly beliefs.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:57 am |
    • Trobe

      *contradictions*

      September 23, 2011 at 11:58 am |
    • Gerald

      Then why did Paul uphold the power of the state to use "the sword" in Rom 13 to keep order and protect society. The state does in fact have the God-given authority to punish even with death when neccessary. I do believe that it is rarel if ever neccessary in this day and age when people can be safely locked away for life.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:59 am |
    • Trobe

      Gerald, like I said, you can find support for just about anything you want, in the Christian book of horrors.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:01 pm |
    • Gerald

      But trobe, there is really no such thing as morals if there is no God. Stalin and Hitler are as moral as you.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:02 pm |
    • Trobe

      Gerald, our common morals are quite independent of your god. They have been arrived at by society by mutual agreement and consideration. They stem from moral systems that actually pre-date your religion. Look up the Golden Rule, for example.

      Furthermore, there is no evidence that your god exists. Consider my question again: why does your "god" hate amputees?

      September 23, 2011 at 12:08 pm |
    • Gerald

      The horrors in scripture are due to man's fallen nature.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:08 pm |
    • YeahRight

      "there is really no such thing as morals if there is no God."

      What total BS you are so brainwashed by your cult its appalling. You don't need a god to be moral. Its about normatively to refer to a code of conduct that, given specified conditions, would be put forward by all rational persons. Religion differs from morality or a moral system in that it includes stories about events in the past, usually about supernatural beings, that are used to explain or justify the behavior that it prohibits or requires. Sometimes there is no distinction made between a moral code and a code of conduct put forward by a religion, and there is often a considerable overlap in the conduct prohibited or required by religion and that prohibited or required by morality.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:08 pm |
    • RightTurnClyde

      Fact - 7 billion people are alive today who will cease to exists in less than 90 years (it will be 9 billion by 2050)(or sooner) Now any way you calculate that it's about 90 million per year (and WWII TOTAL was 50 million). So when you allude to the Creator and the Cosmos you cannot overlook that reality. Naturally everyone on this BLOG has an appointed time. This is just amusement

      September 23, 2011 at 12:09 pm |
    • Gerald

      Your question implies I agree with it's premise that God's hates amputees. I don't. Of course you have some passage you think proves it even though you don't even think there is a god. I do agree that good morals predate man by an infinite amount of time actually. But again, if you get a society that by consensus decides they want to exterminate Jews, then on what basis do you tell them they are wrong?

      September 23, 2011 at 12:11 pm |
    • YeahRight

      continued...

      But religions may prohibit or require more than is prohibited or required by guides to behavior that are explicitly labeled as moral guides, and may allow some behavior that is prohibited by morality. Sometimes morality is regarded as the code of conduct that is put forward by religion, but even when this is not the case, morality is thought by many to need some religious explanation and justification. However, just as with law, some religious practices and precepts are criticized on moral grounds, e.g., discrimination on the basis of race, gender, or sexual orientation. Morality is only a guide to conduct, whereas religion is always more than this.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:13 pm |
    • Trobe

      So, Gerald, your god according to your bible has slaughtered whole peoples, innocents included, several times. So I turn your question back at you.

      Now, prove that any prayer has ever been answered, ever.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:14 pm |
    • Gerald

      Yearight,

      How do you know that the morals in your head aren't just what a collective society has conditioned you to? They in fact are to some degree. Charles Manson doesn't agree with your morals. Who says his are wrong? One atheist might disagree with you and say abortion is wrong. What makes you right?

      September 23, 2011 at 12:14 pm |
    • YeahRight

      "One atheist might disagree with you and say abortion is wrong. What makes you right?"

      One christian might disagree with you and say abortion Ok. What makes you right?

      September 23, 2011 at 12:16 pm |
    • RightTurnClyde

      @YeahRight If there is no after-life and no God then there the entire truth about life must be here in this physical world. Then the state is the ultimate authority and there is no moral truth. The state imposes law. The U.S. is a temporary thing (like Rome) and monarchs make their own laws (like Edward V and George III). Monarchs are efficient (no debate). Dictators are similar. A very small oligarchy can be efficient (but often is dominated by a Hitler or a Stalin or a Mao). Most likely THAT form of governance will replace this one and there will be no morality.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:16 pm |
    • Gerald

      Trobe,

      God is the author of life. If there were any who were truly innocent they are with him for eternity and so their deaths are not tragic at all. The tragedy is for those who killed them.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:16 pm |
    • Trobe

      Gerald, good on you for pondering the questions. Now, we agree that definitive answers cannot be found in the bible, so where will you look?

      September 23, 2011 at 12:17 pm |
    • YeahRight

      "God is the author of life"

      There is not god so that statement is false.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:18 pm |
    • Duht

      'The tragedy is for those who killed them."

      According to your bible that would be your god.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:19 pm |
    • Gerald

      "One christian might disagree with you and say abortion Ok. What makes you right?"

      Clearly in your system nothing and so you avoided the question. Charles Manson did what he thought was right. If there is a God it isn't about which of us is right but what the ultimate judge thinks. If someone agrees with abortion and life begins at conceptoin then they will have to answer to him. There is no consequence that I know of if I am wrong. I will not be responsible for taking a life that he has given.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:21 pm |
    • Yeahright

      "most likely THAT form of governance will replace this one and there will be no morality"

      Oh plz with global communication now, laws about freedom and rights that isn't going happen in this country. You need that pathetic excuse to justify your false belief in a god and your cult, nothing more.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:21 pm |
    • RightTurnClyde

      @Trobe ... birth is a the first act of a terminal disease. Every life (human-animal-plant) is terminal. It is a universal fact. Yes ALL of the innocent must go. All of us. In that respect it IS fair and just. We will find no true justice here. Some will die in the womb, some in the nursery .. some will be over 100 .. some in war, some in car accidents, some in asylums. There is no natural justice, no natural equality. Our American justice system is the highest attempt but iti crippling us and will actually extinguish us. It is not far off.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:24 pm |
    • Gerald

      Trobe.

      If I were a Bible alone Christian then I would have difficulty with your question. I'm not.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:24 pm |
    • Yeahright

      "If there is a God it isn't about which of us is right but what the ultimate judge thinks"

      That's what the terrorist that invaded this country probably thought too.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:24 pm |
    • derp

      "But trobe, there is really no such thing as morals if there is no God. Stalin and Hitler are as moral as you."

      I hate to burst your bubble, but Hitler was on your team.

      As a Christian I have no duty to allow my self to be cheated, but I have the duty to be a fighter for truth and justice… And if there is anything which could demonstrate that we are acting rightly it is the distress that daily grows . For as a Christian I have also a duty to my own people." Adolph Hitler

      September 23, 2011 at 12:24 pm |
    • Yeahright

      "How do you know that the morals in your head aren't just what a collective society has conditioned you to? "

      The same thing could be said about your cult.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:26 pm |
    • Gerald

      Derp,

      That of course is debatable but you miss the point. We are discussing this from your point of view that there is no God. Therefore it doesn't matter whose team hitler was on or how he came to his conclusions. It's just as moral as how you come to yours.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:30 pm |
    • RightTurnClyde

      @Trobe .. you must die. Who you died for is your business (a choice) Amputees are no more or less treated than any other life on this planet. This last election reveals that the majority would prefer a dictator to debate. They want an efficient few to make the rules and not bother them with the details .. and the efficient few redistribute things their way. And that is what they did and that is what everybody wants. I dare say the previous "few" had little regard for what the average person expected and so the tendency is toward a governing elite who have no accountability to the masses (like the Soviet). SO get used to it.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:33 pm |
    • Gerald

      I am amazed at how the atheists on this thread cannot discuss the issue of morality in their own realm. I concede for the point of discussion that there is no God. Therefore what makes your set of morality right?

      Yearight, can you address this rather than trying to turn it back on me. I agree I am conditioned by my faith. What makes that less moral than your set of morals? What makes it more or less right if there is no God.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:33 pm |
    • Chuckles

      @Gerald

      It's tough to debate with a person who automatically as.sumes that atheists are corrupt and have no sense of morality. Where does a sense of morality come from for an atheist? Well for me personally it's an amaglamation of what was taught to me in my household, what is and isn't against the law, and reading up on history and learning what actions have led to bad consequences, and conversley what actions led to harmony and happiness. You and I both can agree that it's near impossible to reach one or the other side of the spectrum of pure good and pure evil, and we each have in mind what that entails. The only difference is that you have a set person (or character) that sits on either end. We both aspire to be the best we can be within the confines of our personal lives and society at large, so how are you morals any better than mine?

      September 23, 2011 at 12:39 pm |
    • derp

      "That of course is debatable"

      Really?

      What part of "For as a Christian I have also a duty to my own people" is debatable?

      September 23, 2011 at 12:42 pm |
    • Gerald

      Chuckles,

      "It's tough to debate with a person who automatically as.sumes that atheists are corrupt and have no sense of morality. "

      No it's tough to debate someone who has trouble with comprehension and puts words in my mouth.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:43 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      Yeah Right,
      What total BS if it is "about normatively to refer to a code of conduct", how do you then put trust in the code of conduct, and if someone differs with a code of conduct what right then you do have to claim that your normatively is more correct? Wrestle with this, if humans have no instincive value from God, why is it wrong to starve the poor.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:44 pm |
    • RightTurnClyde

      @Gerald this is the quintessential issues - without God man is stuck in the mud (feet of clay) and must return to it as dust. Hence there is no "truth" (or morality) about life life other than existence (like an ant hill). Most godless societies are essentially ant hills. But man has a nobility in him (we honor this with medals and plaques and diplomas) and he can reach up to an ideal! But what IS the ideal? The Omega. (I will take this any further .. the Omega is a prime mover and .. well OURS is Jesus Christ and we truly believe in the Trinity .. THEY cannot or will not understand that ... we are not their mother so I do not care ...

      September 23, 2011 at 12:45 pm |
    • Gerald

      derp,

      clearly you haven't read the Bible. There were those who called Jesus Lord but did not do what he said to do. He says at judgement "get out of my sight, I never knew you".

      September 23, 2011 at 12:45 pm |
    • Gerald

      RightTurnClyde,

      God bless you man. Thanks for standing with me this morning in this discussion.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:47 pm |
    • Yeahright

      "if humans have no instincive value from God, why is it wrong to starve the poor."

      If you need a god to answer that question then why aren't you asking him that question since a every day, almost 16,000 children die from hunger-related causes. That's one child every five seconds. Thanks for showing why believing in a god hasn't stop any of it and your god especially hasn't done anything about it.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:59 pm |
    • Chuckles

      @Gerald,

      Sorry if you thought I put words in your mouth. When you say that Stalin and Hitler have the same morals as atheists I guess I was one who misinterpreted what you said, please, enlighten me as to how that statement makes even a little sense.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:08 pm |
    • gerald

      Show me where I said stalin and hitler had the same morals as atheists? Again you seem to have difficulty with comprehension.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:10 pm |
    • Chuckles

      "Gerald

      But trobe, there is really no such thing as morals if there is no God. Stalin and Hitler are as moral as you."

      You could have also scrolled up a little further and found it yourself.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:15 pm |
    • So

      "Show me where I said stalin and hitler had the same morals as atheists? "

      "Stalin and Hitler are as moral as you."

      So what you are you implying is your response?

      September 23, 2011 at 1:16 pm |
    • gerald

      So,

      Nice of you to take a phrase out of context. I said if there is no God then they are as moral as you. The point being there is no basis for either good morals or bad morals. I clearly believe their is a hierarchy of morals even in the heart of the atheist and so would not agree with the statement as you present it.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      1coin2sides, are you kidding us. Jesus detests evil. He especially detests pre-med murder

      Read the Bible before you comment.

      Amen.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:25 pm |
    • gerald

      Chuckles,

      Again, the statement is a sylogism. Do you know what that is? I believe there is a God so I do not agree at all that the morality of an atheist is equal that of stalin or lenin. If we are independent creatures and come to our own conclusions based only on socialization or some random change of evolution (by the way I am not against evolution so lets not go down that path) and our own thinking there is no real superceding moral principles. They simply don't exist any more than God doesn't exist. There is nothing "in the air" that joins us and makes us subject to another's morality other than the power that some claim over another by might more than right.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:25 pm |
    • Chuckles

      You want me to believe you said, "there is really no such thing as morals if there is no God." is actually out of context and what you MEANT to say is something different. Then you try to back this up by saying "I said if there is no God then they are as moral as you. The point being there is no basis for either good morals or bad morals.", well you're wrong plain and simple. Just because you believe god is the only one who governs morality does not make the inverse of no god = no morals. You and I both know that clearly Stalin and Hitler were pretty immoral, and just because I have a disbelief in god does not mean that there are no morals nor because of that initial fallactious statement that everyone then has the same morals.

      If you wonder why people are having issues with reading comprehension, you may want to learn how to better express youself with the written word and understand the meaning of words before typing them, then people won't "miscomprehend" what you are trying to say.

      Just some helpful advice!

      September 23, 2011 at 1:28 pm |
    • gerald

      "no god = no morals"

      Try

      "no God = no basis for morals" light comes on?

      September 23, 2011 at 1:31 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @Gerald
      This atheist approaches ethics from the prespective of a rational anarchist who knows that concepts such as 'morality' and ‘state’ and ‘society’ and ‘government’ have no existence save as physically exemplified in the acts of self-responsible individuals.
      I hold that it is impossible to shift, share, or distribute blame . . . as blame, guilt, responsibility etc. are matters taking place inside human beings singly and nowhere else. Therefore, we should be rational and realize that not everyone will share the same evaluations of good and evil. We must try to live perfectly in an imperfect world, aware that our efforts will be less than perfect while trying to remain undismayed by self knowledge of failure.
      Moral relativism is an unavoidable facet of humanity. Because our species must balance our instinct for self-preservation with our need to cooperate, elaborate systems for co-existence have been concocted throughout the ages.
      We need points of convergence that can extend the self-preservation instinct beyond it's natural reach of ourselves and our offspring. That is what mythology and it's accompanying rituals have always done – but the rules from each religion vary greatly.
      Our culture has a very strong cannibalism taboo, but it cannot be "human nature" to feel repulsed by it as virtually every branch of the human species has praticed it at some point in their development.
      The Wari, The Kuru, Fore, Caribs, Fijians, Popayans, Serengipeans, are all fairly modern examples (within the last 500 years).
      Indeed, Christians from the 1st Crusade consumed the fallen Arabs at Maarat.
      Ethics and morals come from societal consensus, NOT GODS.
      Saying the Gods make the rules is just a convenient way of building consensus.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:33 pm |
    • Chuckles

      Gerald

      No God = no basis for morals – this statement is tricky and now it's starting to make a little more sense, You're saying that atheists, without god have no BASELINE and so you believe without having that spectrum you think that although we have morals, they are way off. Yes? I wouldn't want to misconstrue what you said AGAIN

      However, to say that atheists have no basis for morals is implying (and from what you can see from the illicited responses, I wasn't the only one to miscomprehend) is that we don't have a basis for morals thus we don't have them. Like i stated above, when you write something, look it over, if it actually could be mistaken from your actual purpose, try tweaking it so it won't be.

      September 23, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      YeahRight,
      Way to not answer the question and face the reality that you depend on these unwritten morals which you can never emperically prove but believe

      "believing in a god hasn't stop any of it and your god especially hasn't done anything about it."

      Why do you confuse Believing in God and therefore the world should be perfect... and if there is a perfect world, why are you in it, mesing it all up. When God clearly explains why there are starving people in the world, you recject the answer you are already given. Why do you search for a second one.

      September 26, 2011 at 12:19 pm |
    • Chuckles

      @Mike

      First, YeahRight among others believe in morals that are not unwritten, in fact they are very clearly written down and passed on, so I'm confused why you believe we can't figure out where our morals come from, it's actually very simple

      Secondly, and I would LOVE to hear this, god has clearly explained why there are starving people? I must have missed that, what did he say? They deserve it because they're unbelievers? God has a plan so don't worry about it? What is it?

      September 26, 2011 at 12:23 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      Chuckles,
      Never had a conversation with you, so I have to generalize here a little bit.

      But people with your arguement say in one voice We shouldn't listen from people from the brozne age and then say our morals have been handed down that is why we accept them.

      The question still on the table is why do you accept the moral law that we should not starve the poor?

      And I don't think I will find one who believes in starting the poor but the point of the question is this:
      Those who say everything has to be scientifically can not prove scientifically why we should not starve the poor.

      Those who say it was passed down can not show the source of said belief and why that belief is held closer and truer then the belief that Christ is Risen.

      All to point back to that there is a law that is outside of ourselves, ingrained in ourselfs that we all believe but can never prove.

      As for God explaining why there is starving poor, goes back to man's sinful nature and choosing to starve people. The state of Texas alone grows enough food to feed the world, i think the last figure was like 3x over.

      So
      Mark 7:20-23
      Romans 1:1-32
      Matthew 5:42
      1 Timothy 6:9
      Luke 12:15
      Proverbs 11:24
      Proverbs 11:6
      Colossians 3:5
      Galatians 5:19-21
      Jeremiah 17:9
      Proverbs 5
      1 Corinthians 2:14
      Revelation 16:9

      But it would be healthy to go through the exercise of reading at least the NT.

      September 26, 2011 at 3:05 pm |
  2. hesalive

    Good question. Jesus definitely promoted forgiveness and turning the other cheek. He never commanded his people to kill for him; rather, he told us to die for him. I think the same holds true for war. According to Jesus there is no "just" war. His kingdom is not of this world.

    September 23, 2011 at 11:50 am |
    • Trobe

      Why should we have to die for an omnipotent creature? Furthemore, how come your "god" hates amputees?

      September 23, 2011 at 12:00 pm |
    • RightTurnClyde

      There may be no just war but YOU had us dragged into camps and told we were owned by YOU and sent off to war. (while YOU ran to Canada and sang folk songs about Peace... but you didn't mind letting us died in your place .. and you insisted that was JUST. So do not bring up the unjust war card because you did not participate.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:03 pm |
    • Trobe

      Answer the questions. Why should we have to die for an omnipotent creature? Furthemore, how come your "god" hates amputees?

      September 23, 2011 at 12:15 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Turning the other cheek means to stop throwing His pearls to swines.

      Amen.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:26 pm |
    • THE BROWN NOTE

      your god had lots of people murdered in the old testament

      jesus said he wasnt around to abolish the old law

      so uh your god still enjoys murder

      September 23, 2011 at 7:21 pm |
  3. William Demuth

    Its NOT the guilty I am worried about.

    We see every day people (mostly poor minorities) who are being aquitted YEARS after being sent to prison.

    The issue is basic. There is no way to undo an execution.

    If ONE man dies that way who was innocent, then ANY pretense of Justice is lost.

    It is not Justice, it is Vengance.

    Put them in a cage not a coffin.

    September 23, 2011 at 11:47 am |
    • Gerald

      But William if there is no God then aren't you just being over sensitive to death? I mean what's the big deal. Just another animal in the forest that died. If there is no God Stalin and Pol Pot are just as moral as you.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:54 am |
    • YeahRight

      "If there is no God Stalin and Pol Pot are just as moral as you."

      You don't need to believe in a god to be moral, wow was that a stupid statement or what. Typical christian twist everything to try and make yourself look more self righteous than everyone else while ignoring the fact you belong to a cult.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:57 am |
    • Trobe

      Gerald, how come your god hates amputees?

      September 23, 2011 at 11:59 am |
    • Gerald

      You can think moral all you want. I don't care. You can even think you are being moral and think what you think is right and wrong is better than any one else. But what makes it better? More moral, moral at all? Only your brain.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:05 pm |
    • Gerald

      Trobe,

      He doen't except in your twisted mind and some distortion of his word.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:06 pm |
    • Gerald

      By the way I am sure you have some verse that "proves" it and no matter what I say you will hold to your "interpretation" of such a passage.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:07 pm |
    • Trobe

      Gerald, yes, indeed. Like I said, support can be found for all manner of horrors in your nasty book known as the bible. No disagreement there. You are making progress.

      But again, don't you find it strange that your god can't establish even a simple internet presence? Human-generated bible-pusher sites don't count; we want clear divine action.

      Now, answer the question: why does your god hate amputees?

      September 23, 2011 at 12:12 pm |
    • William Demuth

      Gerald

      Your education must have come with parental abuse.

      Morality is genetic, and it exist in ALL human beings without your imaginary sky friend.

      My Labrador Retriever has it, and the ONLY exposure she has ever had to it was during paper training!

      September 23, 2011 at 12:12 pm |
    • Chuckles

      @Gerald

      Do you think all Atheists are just sad, despairing people, slowing moving through life waiting for death? If that is the case, you have gross misconceptions and should probably leave the church once in a while and actually meet an atheists, I guarantee yo'd be surprised.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:13 pm |
    • Gerald

      Chuckles,

      Why no, not at all. I have met many atheists who are quite moral. You see the scriptures tell me that God has implanted his laws on all men's hearts. But you don't believe in that passage is my point. I do. I know why you are moral to some degree though it is very corrupt, even though your morality in your own system is somewhat baseless.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:26 pm |
    • Gerald

      I do believe that perseverence for an atheist when tragedy strikes or misfortune befalls does cause the atheist to dispair however.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:27 pm |
    • Yeahright

      "know why you are moral to some degree though it is very corrupt."

      What is corrupt? Probably in your mind that fact we don't believe in your cult. We don't need your cult to be moral. It's because you belong to your cult that you version of morality is corrupt, not ours.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:32 pm |
    • Chuckles

      @Gerald

      That's incredibly......whats the word I'm looking for here.....prideful? condescending? wrong? Yeah, I'll go with wrong.

      So you believe that morals are implanted in every man, woman and child, however if you don't believe in the bible then we're corrupt, but we have morals? Not only does that not make sense, but you willfully discard any evidence that shows when an atheist acts morally (or for that matter when a christian who supposedly has these morals implanted in him and believes in the passage you quoted and does something incrediblly immoral).

      You say that I have baseless morality because I don't believe the same as you, and yet I could say the same thing about you and also be completely correct. Gerald, if you try looking at the world as black and white as you do now and really believe that any non-christian is corrupt and baseless in morality I hope that one day you'll see the error in that way of thinking when you realize that christianity has no monoploy on morals and there are an equal to great amount of christians out there acting immorally (by your definition of morality, not mine)

      September 23, 2011 at 12:34 pm |
    • Gerald

      Chuckles,

      Again the atheist seems to have difficulty following logic and grasping the point. I did not say your morality is baseless. I said that if there is no God then it is baseless meaning there is no real reason to suspect that one's morality is better than another. And I did not say that just your morality is corrupt. All men's morality is corrupt or at least they don't follow it by the dictates of what is written on their hearts. Thus Christians, though knowing what is right, don't always follow it. Have you ever felt you have done wrong?

      September 23, 2011 at 12:40 pm |
    • Yeahright

      "I do believe that perseverence for an atheist when tragedy strikes or misfortune befalls does cause the atheist to dispair however"

      No, it doesn't because we have loved ones to get support from to pull us through. I have had some horrific things happen in my life but I didn't need a god to get through it. It made me realize how strong and beautiful my mind, my will power are and grateful for the love and respect of the people in my life. You miss all that because you have to give credit to a nonexistent deity instead of relinquish your true potential as a human being.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:46 pm |
    • Gerald

      Yeahright, What makes you think as a Christian I have to deny what he gives me the strength to do? I won't miss anything. Any will you have in you, any strength is from him. That does not mean you have it. You just deny that it is from him. I don't.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:50 pm |
    • Yeahright

      "I said that if there is no God then it is baseless meaning there is no real reason to suspect that one's morality is better than another."

      Which is why as a society we develop laws and learn from our mistakes. A great example is the gay issue, we are learning from our mistakes, they deserve their civil rights. we learned about slavery and womens rights. If we allowed your corrupt cult to dictate morality then based on your rule book, the bible, a woman's place is in the home barefoot and pregnant, you can own slaves and if a husbands wife can't have children, then he can rape the slave to have a child. If a woman does get raped then she has to marry her rapist according to your rule book. That's is why your view point on morality is corrupted, not ours.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:52 pm |
    • Yeahright

      "Any will you have in you, any strength is from him. That does not mean you have it. You just deny that it is from him. I don't."

      That is such BS, there is no god, no strength from it it's all of my own doing. Wow that is just pathetic.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:54 pm |
    • Chuckles

      @Gerald

      "I know why you are moral to some degree though it is very corrupt, even though your morality in your own system is somewhat baseless."

      Now please point out to me in this sentence where I'm the one with reading comprehension issues. You seem pretty sure of yourself since you agree with a statement in a book you have morals, and my morals are "very corrupt" and "morality in my own system is somewhat baselss"

      That's the thing with posting Gerald, if you don't mean it, don't type it or else it will come back to bite you in the as.s

      September 23, 2011 at 1:12 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      William,pay close attention to Deuteronomy 19:20

      19:1 When the LORD thy God hath cut off the nations, whose land the LORD thy God giveth thee, and thou succeedest them, and dwellest in their cities, and in their houses;

      19:2 Thou shalt separate three cities for thee in the midst of thy land, which the LORD thy God giveth thee to possess it.

      19:3 Thou shalt prepare thee a way, and divide the coasts of thy land, which the LORD thy God giveth thee to inherit, into three parts, that every slayer may flee thither.

      19:4 And this is the case of the slayer, which shall flee thither, that he may live: Whoso killeth his neighbour ignorantly *, whom he hated not in time past;

      19:5 As when a man goeth into the wood with his neighbour to hew wood, and his hand fetcheth a stroke with the axe to cut down the tree, and the head slippeth from the helve, and lighteth upon his neighbour, that he die; he shall flee unto one of those cities, and live:

      19:6 Lest the avenger of the blood pursue the slayer *, while his heart is hot, and overtake him, because the way is long, and slay him; whereas he was not worthy of death, inasmuch as he hated him not in time past.

      19:7 Wherefore I command thee, saying, Thou shalt separate three cities for thee.

      19:8 And if the LORD thy God enlarge thy coast, as he hath sworn unto thy fathers, and give thee all the land which he promised to give unto thy fathers;

      19:9 If thou shalt keep all these commandments to do them, which I command thee this day, to love the LORD thy God, and to walk ever in his ways; then shalt thou add three cities more for thee, beside these three:

      19:10 That innocent blood be not shed in thy land, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance, and so blood be upon thee.

      19:11 But if any man hate his neighbour, and lie in wait for him, and rise up against him, and smite him mortally that he die, and fleeth into one of these cities:

      19:12 Then the elders of his city shall send and fetch him thence, and deliver him into the hand of the avenger of blood, that he may die.

      19:13 Thine eye shall not pity him, but thou shalt put away the guilt of innocent blood from Israel, that it may go well with thee.

      19:14 Thou shalt not remove thy neighbour's landmark, which they of old time have set in thine inheritance, which thou shalt inherit in the land that the LORD thy God giveth thee to possess it.

      19:15 One witness shall not rise up against a man for any iniquity, or for any sin, in any sin that he sinneth: at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be established.

      19:16 If a false witness rise up against any man to testify against him that which is wrong;

      19:17 Then both the men, between whom the controversy is, shall stand before the LORD, before the priests and the judges, which shall be in those days;

      19:18 And the judges shall make diligent inquisition: and, behold, if the witness be a false witness, and hath testified falsely against his brother;

      19:19 Then shall ye do unto him, as he had thought to have done unto his brother: so shalt thou put the evil away from among you.

      19:20 And those which remain shall hear, and fear, and shall henceforth commit no more any such evil among you.

      19:21 And thine eye shall not pity; but life shall go for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.

      Amen.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:28 pm |
    • gerald

      Chuckles,

      I have in fact said over and over that Atheists have morals. All of our morals are corrupt to one degree or another. If that is the clarification you need to understand what I am saying then go for it. But I doubt that will help. You are simply looking in my writing for something to take out of context and distort.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:28 pm |
    • Chuckles

      No, I understand, perfectly thanks. I'm just reposting what you've already written. Furthermore, I disagree whole heartedly with the fact that everyone's morals are corrupt, that's a false statement based on you believing that since you will never be as moral as jesus that automatically makes you corrupt. I live a life unfettered by striving for an impossible ahcievable goal of being completely 100% moral, but I also know that even though I won't be able to be 100% moral that does no imply that I am immoral or have corrupt morals.

      Then again, I guess I didn't understand ANYTHING you were trying to say because what you keep typing isn't what you MEAN, I should have been able to read what you didn't write, and for that I apologize.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:33 pm |
    • geraldh

      And we have come full circle. If everyone's morals are not corrupt then Stalin and Lenin and Charles Manson's morality is as good as yours. Now I suppose we will be back to me saying you have no morals.

      September 24, 2011 at 1:03 pm |
  4. William Demuth

    Because their Savior was executed for Capital crimes against the State, so I guess they figure

    "If it's good enough for Jesus, its good enough for them darkies and heathens"

    Standard primitive mind set.

    September 23, 2011 at 11:43 am |
    • Trobe

      Yep. That and the bible can be interpreted as saying anything a believer wants it to say.

      Funny too how "god" needs a book to get his message out, and that book is utterly open to interpretation. -and god can't even create his own internet presence.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:52 am |
    • RightTurnClyde

      I f . .i t . .i s . .g o o d . .e n o u g h . .f o r . .M c V e i g h . .a n d . .S p e c k . .a n d . .W e s t e r f i e l d . .a n d . .S c o t t . .P e t e r s o n . .w h y . .s h o u l d n ' t . .i t . .b e . .g o o d . .e n o u g h . .f o r . .D a v i s ? . .I t . .w o u l d . . . .a c t u a l l y . .b e . .r a c i s t . .t o . .i m p o s e . .i t . .o n l y . .u p o n . .C a u c a s i a n s . . .Y o u . .a r e . .m a k i n g . .i t . .a . .r e v e r s e . .r a c i s m . .c a s e . .t o . .s a y . .D a v i s . .i s . .d i f f e r e n t . .B E C A U S E . .h e . .i s . .b l a c k . . . . . . .M a n y . .d e s p i c a b l e . .c r i m i n a l s . .r e c e i v e . .t h e . .s a m e . .s e n t e n c e . . . . .D a v i s . .w a s . .d e s p i c a b l e . .a n d . .m a n y . .c o u r t s . .r e v i e w e d . .h i s . .t r i a l . .a n d . .a g r e e d .

      September 23, 2011 at 11:58 am |
    • William Demuth

      RightTurnClyde

      I don't mourn the dirtbag, I mourn for us.

      Do you doubt that at least ONE innocent man was ever executed?

      Do you have ANYTHING hesitation because of the racial imbalance of those killed?

      Clyde, many of your post are reasonable, so I suspect you understand my legitimate concern.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:15 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Billy Boy, still re-writing history I see. Your ancestors crucified Jesus, just as you do to this day. Those that do evil and don't want to change their evil ways.

      Amen.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:30 pm |
    • Duh

      "Your ancestors crucified Jesus, just as you do to this day."

      And your ancestors because of religion killed millions, that makes you more evil.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:33 pm |
    • pssst

      RightTurnClyde

      *desp.icable - was your filter tripping word (we can't say sp.ic)

      September 23, 2011 at 1:34 pm |
    • William Demuth

      HeavenSent

      I would personally drive the nails myself?

      But what does that have to do with killing innocent men?

      You do understand why the Bible is vauge about exactly what Christ's sins were don't you? Because he was guilty, and if they included the charges you would be able to judge for yourself, but your church dosen't want you to think.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:34 pm |
    • THE BROWN NOTE

      heaven

      please provide the cross and the corpse as evidence for this alleged crucifixion you are fixated on

      i wasnt around back then so i am not responsible for any of it

      your bible by the way is full of hate contradictions and lies

      you cant use the bible as evidence since it proves itself wrong

      September 23, 2011 at 7:25 pm |
    • Lycidas

      Care to elaborate on how it proves itself wrong

      September 23, 2011 at 7:29 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Duh, don't concern yourself who can kill the flesh, concern yourself with Jesus that can blot you out permanently. No eternity for those that do evil.

      Amen.

      September 24, 2011 at 1:12 pm |
  5. Alfonzo Muchanzo

    I'm a Christian who is pro-life and also against the death penalty. Jesus taught love, forgiveness, and repentance. Ofcourse a person should be locked up for heinous crimes, but by killing them, we are ultimately becoming the judge (which we shouldn't be).

    The fact that there was doubt about the guilty verdict but the execution was still carried through is absolutely disgusting. Our society is going to heIl in a handbasket.

    September 23, 2011 at 11:35 am |
    • RightTurnClyde

      There was no doubt about the guilty verdict. Most of the witnesses did not recant. The ones that did were close to Davis. The death penalty existed in the Judaic law (stoning .. outside the city). It was rather severe and the trial procedure was not beyond a reasonable doubt. Jesus often said that He respected and followed the law. Pro-life is about innocent lives and not about adjudicated criminals. Pro-choice is also about innocent lives ( a woman can kill if she wants to and there is no crime and no trial .. little permissions they reserve for themselves). . Pro-choice is even less constrained than the state because the state is required to have a trial. In Davis case several appeals were made as high as the U.S. Supreme Court and all upheld the verdict and the sentence. Are they all wrong? Because if they are all wrong .. then you have to doubt Escobedo and Miranda and Gideon and Brown v Board ..oh and even Roe! Once you decide that only the media and the demonstrators can be right .. you have chaos.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:50 am |
    • YeahRight

      "Most of the witnesses did not recant"

      7 of the 9 witnesses who identified his as the shooter recanted their testimony.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:53 am |
    • Nonimus

      Isn't the difference between death and life, in sentencing, just a matter of degree. In other words, society has to judge in order to put someone in prison, too.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:12 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Some Christian you are Alfonzo, who refuses to believe Jesus' truth. Jesus detests pre-meditated murder. Haven't you read the Bible?

      Amen.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:32 pm |
    • THE BROWN NOTE

      heaven it is quite obvious you havent read the bible because you actually believe in it still

      you must be one of those christians living in fear of hell

      thats funny

      because hell is mentioned in the bible only the writer decided to steal the idea from greek mythology

      do a little research on tartarus

      the bible stole most of its trash from other religions

      but the writers had a rough time keeping the story straight because it contradicts itself in so many places

      yeah some god

      creates the universe and life but cant get a single book right

      please dont tell me you actually think you know what youre talking about

      the bible is known to be a pile of garbage amongst the people that read it

      the christians that read it take it all out of context because they interpret the words

      even though the bible says that no scripture is a matter of interpretation

      yet christians continue to do it

      which means they dont know that the bible says that

      which proves that most christians have no idea whats in the bible

      hence the reason why atheists know way more about the religion that christians ever will

      faith is based on blind ignorance

      quit being a sheep and do some research

      youll be allowed to post again when you have something reasonable to say

      September 23, 2011 at 7:30 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Brown note, you actually believe that you have an education today? LOL. You've been conditioned to be an idiot by stroking of your ego. If you ever go humble, write back. Then, and only then, will you be able to have an intelligent discussion.

      Amen.

      September 24, 2011 at 1:20 pm |
    • IKYABWAI

      Heaven Sent,

      You are about as humble as a mosquito with a hard-on, floating on its back down the river, shouting, "Open the drawbridge!"

      September 24, 2011 at 1:26 pm |
  6. RightTurnClyde

    There was no doubt 36 witnesses saw him shoot the off duty cop in cold blood. He was pistol whipping a homeless guy in a fast food parking lot and the off duty cope yelled "stop that" and so Davis shot him. Then Davis went over to him and smiled at him and shot him again making sure he was dead. 26 witnesses did not recant. Of the 9 who recanted 7 were his friends and knew Davis .. one was the confused girl friend of the homeless guy (chemical habits).

    September 23, 2011 at 11:27 am |
    • Alfonzo Muchanzo

      Regardless, if there's any doubt the execution should be put on hold. I'm against the death penalty to begin with, but in that scenario it absolutely should've been put on hold.

      Also, did you hear his last remarks? They sounded like the words of an innocent man. That doesn't prove here or there, just saying.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:38 am |
    • Cleveland Attorney

      Rightturnclyde –
      You need to get your facts straight. Only nine withesses testified that Davis was the shooter, not 26 (and there were as many as 30 people present). Seven of the nine recanted, and another witness later testified that another man, who was present had confessed to be the shooter. Finally, the identification procedures the police used in this case were highly questionable and suggestive.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:41 am |
    • HeavenSent

      All liars claim innocence once caught red handed.

      Time to focus on the victim and His family instead of these murderers that look down their noses at everyone and show everyone that we are just sport to them.

      Amen.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:34 pm |
    • THE BROWN NOTE

      heaven you are incorrect

      some people admit guilt

      maybe you should admit that you dont know what youre talking about then you can get on with life

      September 23, 2011 at 7:32 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      THE BROWN NOTE, I have personally dealt and survived what evil egotistical folks did to my life. Who look down their noses at others. Destroying another is sport to them.

      And you? Have you dealt with evil other than looking in the mirror?

      Amen.

      September 24, 2011 at 1:24 pm |
  7. Common Freakin Sense

    I'm pretty sure, whereas he was a recipient of the death penalty, that Jesus doesn't agree with it!

    September 23, 2011 at 11:26 am |
    • RightTurnClyde

      E x c e p t . ...J e s u s . .k n e w . .h e . .w o u l d . .b e . .c r u c i f i e d . .a n d . .t o l d . .t h e . .A p o s t l e s . .t h a t . .i t . .w o u l d . .h a p p e n . .( a s . .p r o p h e s i z e d ) . .a n d . .t h a t . .h e . .w o u l d . . . .r i s e . .b a c k . .u p . .a f t e r . .3 . .d a y s . . . . .H e . .f o r e t o l d . .m o s t . .o f . .w h a t .
      h a p p e n e d . .t o . .H i m . . . . .H e . .s a i d . .r e n d e r . .u n t o . .C e a s a r . .t h o s e . .t h i n g s . .w h i c h . .a r e . .C e a s a r s . .( p e n a l t i e s . .f o r . .c r i m e s ) . . . . .H e . .s u b m i t t e d . .t o . .t o . .t h e . .J u d g e . .( P i l a t e ) . .a n d . .w a s . .n o . .d i s r e s p e c t f u l . . . . .T h e . .j u d g e . .t r i e d . .t o . .b e . .f a i r . .a n d . .e v e n . .p l e a d . .w i t h t h e . .c r o w d . . . . .S o . .y e s . .t h e . .s t a t e . .i s . .u n j u s t . .( t h e r e . .i s . .n o . .j u s t i c e . .i n . .t h i s . .w o r l d ) . .a n d . .t h e r e . .i s . .m u c h . .w o r s e . .t h a n . .c a p i t a l . .p u n i s h m e n t .

      September 23, 2011 at 11:41 am |
    • YeahRight

      "Except...Jesus.knew.he.would.be.crucified.and.told.the.Apostles.that.it.would.happen.(as.prophesized).and.that.he.would..rise.back.up.after.3.days...He.foretold.most.of.what. happened.to.Him...He.said.render.unto.Ceasar.those.things.which.are.Ceasars.(penalties.for.crimes)...He.submitted.to.to.the.Judge.(Pilate).and.was.no.disrespectful...The.judge.tried.to.be.fair.and.even.plead.withthe.crowd...So.yes.the.state.is.unjust.(there.is.no.justice.in.this.world).and.there.is.much.worse.than.capital.punishment."

      There is justice in the world but murdering someone is not justice no matter what excuses you use to justify it.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:51 am |
    • THE BROWN NOTE

      why do people keep bringing up jesus

      if he ever existed hes dead

      jesus in the bible said hed come back to take his followers before they died but he didnt

      so like i said hes dead if he was ever really alive

      why are people so concerned with the words of a dead liar

      September 23, 2011 at 7:34 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Are you off the wall Common Freakin Sense? Jesus HATES evil and will destroy evil permanently when He returns.

      Get off your lazy butt and read His truth He wrote to all of us (the Bible).

      Amen.

      September 24, 2011 at 1:27 pm |
    • tom

      @ HeavenSent Yea, that is why it is not our job to put anyone to death. Christ will put it put it right when he returns. It is not up to us to make life and death judgements.

      September 25, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  8. Reality

    How does a Christian support the death penalty?

    By noting the following:

    Jesus was a bit "touched". After all he thought he spoke to Satan, thought he changed water into wine, thought he raised Lazarus from the dead etc. In today's world, said Jesus would be declared legally insane.
    Or did P, M, M, L and J simply make him into a first century magic-man via their epistles and gospels of semi-fiction? Most contemporary NT experts after thorough analyses of all the scriptures go with the latter magic-man conclusion with J's gospels being mostly fiction.

    Obviously, today's followers of Paul et al's "magic-man" are also a bit on the odd side believing in all the Christian mumbo jumbo about bodies resurrecting, and exorcisms, and miracles, and "magic-man atonement, and infallible, old, European, white men, and 24/7 body/blood sacrifices followed by consumption of said sacrifices. Yummy!!!!

    So why do we really care what a first century CE, illiterate, long-dead, preacher man would do or say?

    From the Code of Hammurabi:

    3. If any one bring an accusation of any crime before the elders, and does not prove what he has charged, he shall, if it be a capital offense charged, be put to death.

    September 23, 2011 at 11:11 am |
    • Reality

      "It has been discovered that the 10 commandments are based on chapter 125 in the Egyptian book of the dead (Although Exodus 34 contains ten imperative statements, the passages in Exodus 20 and Deuteronomy 5 contain more than ten, totaling fourteen or fifteen in all.)

      In that chapter the dead person has to appear before 42 judges and has to answer 42 questions.

      “Hail to thee, great God, Lord of the Two Truths. I have come unto thee, my Lord, that thou mayest bring me to see thy beauty. I know thee, I know thy name, I know the names of the 42 Gods who are with thee in this broad hall of the Two Truths . . . Behold, I am come unto thee. I have brought thee truth; I have done away with sin for thee. I have not sinned against anyone. I have not mistreated people. I have not done evil instead of righteousness . . . I have not reviled the God. I have not laid violent hands on an orphan. I have not done what the God abominates . . . I have not killed; I have not turned anyone over to a killer. I have not caused anyone’s suffering . . . I have not copulated (illicitly); I have not been unchaste. I have not increased nor diminished the measure, I have not diminished the palm; I have not encroached upon the fields. I have not added to the balance weights; I have not tempered with the plumb bob of the balance. I have not taken milk from a child’s mouth; I have not driven small cattle from their herbage… I have not stopped (the flow of) water in its seasons; I have not built a dam against flowing water. I have not quenched a fire in its time . . . I have not kept cattle away from the God’s property. I have not blocked the God at his processions. “

      September 23, 2011 at 11:16 am |
    • Reality

      Hammurabi's Code, Mosaic Law, and Justinian Law

      "If anyone was convicted of murder under any of these codes/laws, they too, were killed."

      September 23, 2011 at 11:21 am |
    • Mike from CT

      Jesus never though he turned water into wine, the master of the feast tasted the wine and the other wedding guest who carried the jugs saw the transition.

      Jesus never though he raised Lazarus from the dead. The people at the tomb saw Lazarus come forth and unwrapped him.

      By eyewitness testimony Jesus would not be declared insane... it is amazing how we still use that method today in our court of laws.

      Nobody of the time of P M M L J call their work fiction. Especially the people mentioned in the works, such as kings and rulers, sons of their father who carried the cross, towns people who are depicted in the events.
      The only ones that a-ssociate this historical doc-ument with fiction are ones who want to get publish and do not put any other doc-ument, including their own writings under the same "poor scholarship" rules which they use... see the biases of the Jesus Seminar.

      So why do we really care what a first century CE, illiterate, long-dead, preacher man would do or say?

      Great question, first and foremost the person I am caring about was not illiterate as He read directly from the scrolls in the synagogue. But to quote people of that time in history.... He spoke as one who Has authority.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:56 am |
    • HeavenSent

      As was in the days that Jesus walked among us. Was crucified for our sins. The evil ones of that day cried for Barabbas' release and not our Lord and Savior.

      To this day, evil folks want other evil folks spared and do time in prison. It's their guilty conscious wanting to release murderers because they know that they don't want to take responsibility for their thoughts, words or deeds.

      Amen.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:40 pm |
    • Huh

      "To this day, evil folks want other evil folks spared and do time in prison. It's their guilty conscious wanting to release murderers because they know that they don't want to take responsibility for their thoughts, words or deeds."

      So even though an inmate gets "saved" in prison, repents for his sins you want to keep him in jail? Many people do really stupid things when they are young, they realize their mistakes and take responsibility for them, which is what the system is trying to do. Based on your pathetic logic no one is allow to get a second chance.

      September 23, 2011 at 2:45 pm |
    • Reality

      There is only one place in the NT that suggests Jesus could read i.e. Luke 4:16. This passage is not attested to in any other NT passage or in any other related doc-ument making it a later addition or poor translation as per most NT scholars' analyses.

      See also Professor Crossan and Professor Reed's book, Excavating Jesus, p. 30.

      See also Professor Bruce Chilton's commentary in his book, Rabbi Jesus, An Intimate Biography, pp 99-101- An excerpt:

      "What Luke misses is that Jesus stood in the synagogue as an illiterate mamzer in his claim to be the Lord's anointed".

      It is very unfortunate that Jesus was illiterate for it resulted in many gospels and epistles being written years after his death by non-witnesses. This resulted in significant differences in said gospels and epistles and with many embellishments to raise Jesus to the level of a deity to compete with the Roman gods and emperors. See Raymond Brown's 878 page book, An Introduction to the New Testament, (Luke 4:16 note on p. 237) for an exhaustive review of the true writers of the gospels and epistles.

      September 23, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
    • Reality

      Mike from CT,

      You noted:

      "Jesus never thought he turned water into wine, the master of the feast tasted the wine and the other wedding guest who carried the jugs saw the transition........"

      You are correct since all these "miracles" were contrived by the non-witnessing evangelists with John being the worst offender.

      To wit:

      With respect to John's Gospel and John' epistles, from Professor/Father Raymond Brown in his book, An Introduction to the New Testament, (The book has both a Nihil Obstat and Imprimatur from the Catholic Church),

      John's Gospel, Date- 80-110 CE, Traditional Attribution, (2nd Century), St. John, one of the Twelve,

      Author Detectable from the Contents, One who regards himself in the tradition of the disciple.

      First Epistle of John, Authenticity- Certainly by a writer in the Johannine tradition, probably NOT by the one responsible for most of the Gospel.

      From Professor Bruce Chilton in his book, Rabbi Jesus,

      "Conventionally, scholarship has accorded priority to the first three gospels in historical work on Jesus, putting progressively less credence in works of late date. John's Gospel for example is routinely dismissed as a source......

      From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gospel_of_John#Authorship

      "Since "the higher criticism" of the 19th century, some historians have largely rejected the gospel of John as a reliable source of information about the historical Jesus.[3][4] "[M]ost commentators regard the work as anonymous,"[5] and date it to 90-100."

      "The authorship has been disputed since at least the second century, with mainstream Christianity believing that the author is John the Apostle, son of Zebedee. Modern experts usually consider the author to be an unknown non-eyewitness, though many apologetic Christian scholars still hold to the conservative Johannine view that ascribes authorship to John the Apostle."

      See also http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/1john.html

      September 23, 2011 at 3:31 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Huh, Did this off duty officer get a 2nd chance?

      Your priorities are screwed up buddy.

      Amen.

      September 24, 2011 at 1:31 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      Reality
      "Professor Crossan and Professor Reed's book, Excavating Jesus, p. 30"
      "is only one place" that nonsense exist
      therefor since it is not in
      "any other related doc-ument making it a later addition or poor translation as per most NT scholars' analyses."

      You see what happens when you apply the same test to the doc-uments you hold in faith.

      But back to the point
      you still have to explain Mark 6:1-6 and Matthew 13:53-58

      September 26, 2011 at 12:27 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      Reality
      You are correct since all these "miracles" were contrived by the non-witnessing evangelists with John being the worst offender.

      John and Matthew were witnesses and Luke interview the witnesses, which even by todays standards can get you the death penalty see the story above. So the question is why is this standard, acceptable by everone but you.

      This is too funny
      "From Professor Bruce Chilton in his book, Rabbi Jesus,

      "Conventionally, scholarship has accorded priority to the first three gospels in historical work on Jesus"

      But in the post above you have contridicted this very statement from the same person trying to discredit the work of Luke.

      Isn't funny that you a non-witnessing person get on the accuracy of other non-witnessing people but still claim that your post are valid why the people accounts much closer to the events are not. If you discredit them for ANY reason, then you must disqualify yourself and your beloved Crossan for the SAME exact reason.

      Hopefully one day you will see the fallicy.

      September 26, 2011 at 12:34 pm |
  9. Hypatia

    Interesting question. Historically, there is no reason a Christian cannot fully endorse the death penalty, but morally, it's always questionable. It all goes back to that OT 'eye for an eye' justice (about which the only person who was right was Ghandi).

    September 23, 2011 at 11:09 am |
    • HeavenSent

      Hypatia, actually, it all goes back to fearing (meaning to love and follow Him by learning His truth ... wisdom) the Lord because He can do ALL.

      Amen.

      September 24, 2011 at 1:36 pm |
  10. Colin

    PaulDV, you are correct and the whole idea gets even more barbaric, the more you think about it.

    Approximately one hundred and ten thousand million (110,000,000,000) people have lived on Earth. Given all those who have, over the centuries, rejected the Christian god, or who have otherwise committed mortal sins, there must be literally thousands of millions of people burning for all eternity in the cosmic oven of hell set up by the all-loving Christian god. Some must have been burning for thousands of years by now.

    About 100,000 people die every day. There must be a constant stream of thousands of forlorn souls every day into the one way pit of hell the "all-merciful" Christian god set up and maintains.

    But, far, far worse than sheer overwhelming numbers is the extent of the punishment. There is no way out, no parole, no time off for good behavior. You don’t just burn, you burn for all eternity. Billions of people and thousands of daily new arrivals burning for all eternity!

    No criminal justice system in the history of the Human race, even those established by the most despotic of tyrants, comes close to matching the unfathomable barbarity of the “infinitely benevolent” Christian god. I don’t have to kill, I don’t have to steal, hell I don’t even have to litter. All I have to do is refuse to believe in the Christian god and it will impose a penalty on me an infinite times worse than the death penalty.

    Hitler murdered about six million in his concentration camps, but compared to the Christian god, Hitler was a bleeding-hearted wimp. A goose-stepping girlie-man. The "all-caring" Christian god not only burns billions more than Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot and all other dictators and tyrants added up, he keeps doing so to them for all eternity! I would not wish a bad sunburn on a person simply because they have a different religion to me, let alone fry them for ever.

    It is also odd that the "all-loving" Christian god is also all-knowing and knows which souls will go to hell before they do. He even knows it before they are born, and yet he still creates them. He is worse than a psychopathic teenager than breeds litter after litter of kittens so he can slowly roast them in ovens.

    That's the problem when you make up an "all loving" god and then still feel the need to invoke his wrath to keep people in line. You pretty soon reveal yourself to be a fool.

    September 23, 2011 at 11:07 am |
    • JohnQuest

      Small but note worthy correction Hitler murdered about 12 million, 6 million were Jews

      September 23, 2011 at 11:23 am |
    • THE BROWN NOTE

      the bible also stole the greek mythological hell

      its called tartarus

      funny how that somehow ended up in the bible

      even though its directly from greek mythology

      September 23, 2011 at 7:39 pm |
  11. Paul DV

    The New Testament is FILLED with horrible death, violence, and eternal punishment for tiny infractions.
    Revelation is all about killing every innocent man, woman, and child in the world using the most horrible and disgusting things the author could think of when he made it up.
    Killing innocent people is considerably worse than killing a convicted criminal, yet Christians have no problem with their "loving" god doing exactly that.
    Murder is supported by both the NT and the OT. All you have to do is cherry-pick what passage you want to use in justifying murder and away you go!
    The god of the Bible is the most vicious, cretinous, pathetic excuse for a being I have ever heard of in my life.
    Of course there is support for death in the Bible. Religions tend to be death cults worshiping a god of death who sort of does the life thing but being a god of death is much more satisfying to the vindictive and hypocritical followers of same.

    September 23, 2011 at 11:00 am |
    • Mike from CT

      Revelation is all about reconciling all things to God, there is no innocent man or woman. Not even one, that was not God himself. Romans 3

      September 23, 2011 at 11:59 am |
    • THE BROWN NOTE

      what about innocent children

      they arent safe either

      theres stories in the bible of god having children bashed on rocks because hes upset

      the bible god is trash

      sounds like an abusive drunk stepfather all coked up and on heroin

      September 23, 2011 at 7:41 pm |
    • Mike from CT

      Name one of these so called innocent childern.

      September 26, 2011 at 12:37 pm |
  12. Colin

    Given that an integral part of the Christian superst.ition is that people will suffer a fate an infinite times worse than the death penalty (burning for all eternity) for doing nothing more than refusing to believe in their Bronze Age sky-god, the death penalty for murder should be an easy one for them to accept.

    There is not a criminal justice system that has ever been invented, even by the worst human beings who have ever lived, that comes close to the sadistic barbarity of the Christian superst.ition of hell.

    September 23, 2011 at 11:00 am |
  13. myweightinwords

    I am neither Christian nor Atheist. I do support a woman's right to abortion. I do support the death penalty in certain situations. I do not believe that anyone should be executed when there is any doubt to be raised regarding whether or not they committed the crime. In other words, while I support the death penalty, I feel it is far over used in our society.

    September 23, 2011 at 10:54 am |
  14. SilverTrail

    I need to get new batteries for my personal toy.

    September 23, 2011 at 10:52 am |
    • THE BROWN NOTE

      yes mathilda you said that yesterday or the day before under a different name

      September 23, 2011 at 7:42 pm |
  15. Chuckles

    Capital Punishment is one of the most disgusting, unjust and immoral things that still exists today in our so-called "modern" and "enlightened" society. I fail to understand at any point why capital punishment is not only insti.tuted, but widely supported. Not only does it specifically go against christian doctrine, it's costly both morally and financially, and is irrevsersable. If you have even half a brain, you would be against state-approved murder.

    September 23, 2011 at 10:51 am |
    • DamianKnight

      @Guffawing, 🙂

      On some points I agree with you. I agree with you it is financially disadvantgeous for a state to have the death penalty. California is the worst about this and they never seem to get around to actually executing someone until 30+ years have passed.

      Saying it goes against Christian doctrine is up for debate. One can find many passages that support executing people for crimes. Leviticus 20:2, Proverbs 10:16, Romans 6:23 and Romans 13:5.

      Thirdly, I have to say, that I disagree with the phrase "state-approved murder" that anti-death penalty advocates use. It's simply a phrase determined to stir up emotions and is not accurate. The definition of murder, at least in California is "The unlawful killing of a human being or fetus with malice aforethought." PC. 187. Even Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines murder as "the crime of unlawfully killing a person especially with malice aforethought." Therefore, since executions are lawful, it cannot be murder.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:06 am |
    • Chuckles

      @Damian

      I'm glad we agree on the fiscal ramifications. As for christian debate, you among others have taught me that anything in the bible can be taken out of context and used to further ones own gains. We've further distilled jesus' message to basically "love people", now a person on death row (whether they innocent or guilty) has proven to a jury of his peers that he doesn't love people, but jesus was quick to note that you have to turn the other cheek, and I still think that he would rather a person get another chance than be killed. Another thing I've seen pop up on this board for a while is that believers maintain it is not their place to judge others, thats for the big guy upstairs, so why kill a person before they would be able to repent for their crimes. If anything I would think a christian would be more willing to have a person on death row live out the rest of his days thinking about his crimes and repenting and feeling bad about it.

      the term state-approved murder I guess can be likened to what pro-lifers imply about people who are pro-choice. If you aren't pro-life than to them, you are anti-life. In this case your definition of murder is correct, but when you tack on the state-approved part, it tweaks the definition to fit this category. Yes, captial punishment is lawful, but look at what the phrase is saying, a state-approved killing of another person, you could even make the argument that there is some malice in it as well. Sure, I use it more to elicit emotions about it, however it's not an incorret term to use.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:22 am |
    • DamianKnight

      @Chuckles,

      I can see your points. You stated, " We've further distilled jesus' message to basically "love people", now a person on death row (whether they innocent or guilty) has proven to a jury of his peers that he doesn't love people, but jesus was quick to note that you have to turn the other cheek, and I still think that he would rather a person get another chance than be killed."

      Yes, but are we not seeking a seperation of church and state? My point is exactly the one you provided. One can use the Bible to either support or come against the death penalty. I'm not certain how God feels about executions, to be honest. Clearly, in Leviticus, we see He orders the Jews to execute people for certain crimes. But, as you said, Jesus taught us to "love people" and "turn the other cheek" because this is a time of Grace. Definitely something to ponder and meditate on. Thanks for giving me that!

      I think if the CHURCH were to execute people (i.e. witch-burnings, etc), that is clearly against Christ's teachings. But the government? Well, that's a different story altogether. The Bible tells us that they are placed in power for a reason. God has allowed many evil regimes to exist throughout history (i.e. the Third Reich).

      As to your last point, I have no problem with people using the phrase "state-approved killing." That's valid. I just don't like the use of the word "murder", because murder is a clearly defined word. It's similar to the Commandment "Thou shalt not kill" when a closer translation of the Hebrew is "Thou shalt not murder." That's a completely different set of circu.mstances! Also, and this is just a pet-peeve of mine, when animal rights protesters call it, "...murdering of innocent animals." You can't murder animals. They're not human beings nor fetuses. You can kill an animal, you can slaughter an animal, you can obliterate an animal, but you can't murder them. To me, it's like calling the body of a person a "carcass." It's just...the wrong word to use. Similar in meaning, but the wrong word.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:41 am |
    • Chuckles

      @Damian

      Alright, fair enough on the state-approved murder vs. killing, I guess in this instance I saw it as murder, regardless of the technical definition because the details surrounding it were so highly suspect, and regardless of whether it was lawful or not, there was somebody killing this person for a crime that he might have been innocent of, and now we'll never know.

      "Yes, but are we not seeking a seperation of church and state?" – Absolutely, it's essential, however this is specifically about specific individuals who have influence on the governement and sometimes turn towards religion to help them figure out how to solve a problem. In this instance, I would have thought the tenants of christianity would have indirectly stopped captial punishment, not because the church forbids it (we clearly saw that when the Pope even asked for a stay of execution), but that the inherient value of prizing life over everything else. Governments can be comprised of good or evil, like you rightfully pointed out the third reich, however America is a system that is the closest to representing the will of the people and so whether we like it or not, is injected more often than not with christian values. Obviously there are issues where christians feel its evil that the governement isn't a theocracy and representing ONLY christian values, but by and large the government operates with a large christian influence on almost every law that it comes across and tries its best to make sure the church stays out of government.

      You may be interested to know that in Judaism one of the biggest tenants that trumps almost every other law in the old testament is Pituach Nefesh or literally, to save a life. This law says that saving a life is much more important than anything else, this could include breaking dietary laws, honoring thy mother and father (if you must dishonor your parents by saving a life, then in gods eyes its worth it). Now, again, it's up for wide interpretation what necessarily consti.tutes as saving a life and needing to break another law to do so, but its still there. It would behoove me to mention however this all applies specifically to jews and no one else (thus all the murders and deaths by and against jews in the OT). Again, though, you can take points out of the OT or the NT to show why capital punishment should be lawful (an eye for an eye immediately comes to mind) but everything in the OT can be distilled down to pituach nefesh, just like you and I discussed on the foo fighter thread, jesus was really about loveing people as yourself.

      Capital punishment, state-sanctioned killing, whatever you call it, I think it's just wrong, no one should have the power and authroity to take another persons life no matter how much that person might deserve it.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:02 pm |
    • DamianKnight

      @Chuckles,

      I can absolutely see your point regarding whether the person was innocent or guilty, and that the death penalty is really a bit like the Rubicon river, no turning back. I'm curious as to your beliefs regarding people who are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Like we're talking about unrepetant people who confess to killing people and there is no doubt in our minds that they would do it again. Should we still lock them up for the rest of their lives (thus possibly giving them the ability to kill an inmate or a guard), or perhaps put them in solitary confinement?

      You stated that our laws and lawmakers are overwhelmingly Christian. I can't speak to that with certainty, as I'm not sure about the religious beliefs of most of our representatives, I can at least acquiese that you are more than likely correct. As you stated, "...however America is a system that is the closest to representing the will of the people and so whether we like it or not, is injected more often than not with christian values." 78% of the people in the United States claim to be some denomination of Christian. Therefore, if the lawmakers are intending to represent the will of the people, and the vast majority are Christian, does it not make sense that the majority of them are Christian as well? I'm not saying our laws should be based on Christianity because then we get into, which branch of Christianity, as they have sometimes conflicting beliefs, (i.e. speaking in tongues and spiritual gifts) but it does seem as though if the government is representing over 3/4 of the people, they are ruling by the will of the people.

      I have never read the old Jewish teachings, like the Pituach Nefesh. To be fair, I know very little about Judism so you would be far more the expert on it than I am (being raised Jewish). That is very interesting. So I wonder, how do the Jews rememdy with how David, Solomon, King Saul, and others with war? Even the Israelis today fighting with the Palestinians? Or the Massod (who, from what I've read, make the CIA look like choir boys) This is in no way intended to be an anti-semtic comment, nor question the Jewish faith, I'm simply curious.

      I can respect your beliefs on capital punishment being morally wrong. To be honest, I don't have a clear-cut opinion on it, so I appreciate you taking the time to speak to me on it. I will definitely have to meditate on what you've said.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:27 pm |
    • Chuckles

      @Damian

      As to your first paragraph, my thoughts on what should happen to the people who clearly, without a reasonable doubt guilty is complicated. I am lucky enough to never have a person close to me killed in cold blood so I don't know how I would react to that killer. However, I want to believe that any person who kills another in malice and cold blood will feel remorse. With that being said, not only do I think death is an escape for them and a greater punishment would be to live out the rest of his days locked away. I think solitary is the best punishment for them. It keeps other innmates and for the most part, the guards, safe and allows for this killer to think about what they've done. I think everyone should have a chance for redemption or at least should try. Maybe I'm naively optimistic, but I think that it would be a better punishment than a premature death.

      As for laws being inherintly christian. I think they are for the most part, you could point out that we teach evolution instead of creationism, or that abortion is legal, however if that 78% voted a block that wouldn't be a case. Christianity, as you pointed it, as very multi-faceted and might fall under one umbrella but can have completely opposing views. I think the only time you could get 78% of a population to vote as a singular voting block would be if someone tried to pass a law abolishing christianity from the US. Fortunately, since there is a separation of church and state, most laws and lawmakers base governement in secularism and can still be the voice of the people, even if those people are 78% christian.

      The mossad are some bad-as.s mothers, they're scary people. But your question specifically was how do we have a law like Pituach Nefesh and still declare war and all that? I think I mentioned it above, but Pituach Nefesh in its most literal sense applies to jews and only jews. It was completely cool to kill a gentile without any consequence, unless he was a jews slave, then that's destruction of property. It's now become a lot more nuanced, especally in the palestinian-israeli conflict. First, Israel is a mostly secular society, a society constantly under attack and in self-defense mode most of the time. It's clearly abhorrent in todays society to kill a person outside of your faith without any reason, or even if you have a reason. How does Pituach Nefesh mesh when it comes to war in modern society? I'll hazard the guess that when it comes to self-defense and you have no choice, Pituach Nefesh sort of takes a back seat. There's also the idea of Tikun Olam (Heal the world) which every jew, secular or religious, has a duty to try and heal the world. It also, in its most literal sense was meant just for jews, now it expands to the whole world. Now that can be taken any way you can think of. Whats the best way to heal the world? Is it to get rid of the evil out there? Is the evil in the form of palestinians and they need to be taken out? You can see how using ideas like Tikun Olam and Pituach Nefesh and interpreting them to fit your own ideals can justify whats happening now in the ME. One thing I do know is that most jews will try and heal anyone wounded from an attack, whether it be a palestinian or israeli. Keep in mind though and this is something that I just learned is actually anti-semitic even though I didn't think it was, to equate israeli's and jews is wrong. Israel is now made up of all types of people, Although it is a jewish state, not everyone is jewish, and since its a democracy, it like America can have ideals and laws that reflect something that may be contrary to judaism.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:04 pm |
    • DamianKnight

      @Chuckles,

      Here's my problem with the death penalty. When it was originally used, it was a public spectacle. It was intended to be a deterrant. That's why people were hung or stoned in the town square. Since we believe that to be morally reprehensible, we now keep it more or less private. Personally, I think, if we're going to say it's ok, why is it bad for our children to watch? Why isn't it broadcast on the news? The best way, in my opinion, to prevent crime is to make it a strong deterrant. The only way to do that is to be in the public's face about it. I know this sounds harsh, coming from someone like me, but I firmly believe that if people were more aware of consequences, it would make them commit crimes less.

      Your explanation regarding how the Jewish people reconcile their "save a life" with "this only applies to Jews" makes sense. I think it is important for people to understand the Jewish culture. For far too long, the Jews have had the short end of the stick mainly because of misunderstanding. I sometimes hear people give this viewpoint that Jews are greedy and only loan money with huge interest rates. But if you do the research, you find that they were kicked around and abused, so the only way for them to make money was to be money-lenders. And hey! It worked for them! There were many times nobles had to come grovelling to the Jewish community, whom they had previously abused, for money.

      From what I have seen, the Jewish people seem somewhat insolar. But so what? So are the Amish. That doesn't make them evil or bad, they just stick with their culture. I'm sure there are jerks, but I firmly believe that jerk is not culture-specific...you find them in all cultures. Sorry, a little off-topic rant there. 🙂

      September 23, 2011 at 1:32 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Jesus said,

      blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind leads the blind, both will fall into a ditch. (Matthew 15:14).

      Jesus also said,

      The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. (John 10:10).

      Amen.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:44 pm |
    • Duh

      "The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy"

      Oh really try telling that to someone who is starving and in need of food then that statement is completely false!

      September 23, 2011 at 1:46 pm |
    • Chuckles

      @Damian

      It's funny, I actually whole heartedly agree with your statement about making the death penalty public and for the reasoning behind it as well. I think it's definitly a deterrant if you see that if you committ a heinous crime, you will be publicly hung. However I would also hope that if it did become public spectacle in this day and age, that people would become so uncomfortable with the idea that they would abolish it. I mean, can you imagine how many communites that would specifically use christianity to STOP public execution that might have been for our current model of capital punishment?

      As for your last part about jews. You are absolutely correct, except it wasn't even the jews ideas to become money lenders. When Rome ruled Judea it was against their own religious beliefs to be bankers and money handlers, so they forced their jewish servents to do it for them, believeing that they could control the money through the jewish community. Well, they were hoisted by their own petard as it were and had to set down laws of banking so as to not swindle each other. When the romans eventually fell and Judea was freed and then the diaspora happened, jews took this knowledge and money with them and have been in that business ever since.

      My big worry about people understanding jewish culture is that a lot of "misconceptions" are not really misconceptions at all, but actually supposed to be sort of offensive. It's actually sort of the reason I started to disassociate myself with the religious at least. As a jew, we're taught that the jewish people are favored above all others, that we are gods chosen and its our duty to act in the best interests of us and only us as a means to protect god and gods teachings. Christianity and Islam both are jewish relatives, but they've distorted gods teachings so in a sense, they are greater enemies than say, buddhists, because they are using gods teachings wrong. To go even further though, not only are we the chosen, but not everyone is allowed to join. It's common practice and tradition to turn down a person 3 times before allowing them to convert to judaism. 3 times! The exclusivity can seem prohibitive, but it goes even deeper, because even if you convert, which means you have more knowledge about jewish heritage, religion and custom, you'll still be an outcast in a sense because you'll always be known as a convert. Even the rabbinical council in Israel might not even recognize you as a jew even when it took you 3 + years to fully convert. I'm sure the jews you have meant were either reform or conservative, and for the most part Judaism is trying to liberalize and modernize to fit into a world that is more global, generally more accepting of jews and generally rejects intense xenophobia that was so prevalent a little while ago, however to religious jews, orthodox and ultra-orthodox, reform and conservative jews aren't even jewish at all (effectively in their minds, cutting the already outrageously small % of jews in the world in half). There is beauty and goodness in judaism, that can also be foundin christianity or islam or any other religion, but Judaism through terrible events, pogroms and the diaspora have been able to fit themselves as forever the consumate victim and used this as leverage in a number of different matters to emotionally blackmail everyone else.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:48 pm |
    • Real Deal

      HeavenSent: "blind leading the blind"

      Sorry, but Jesus did not originate this saying. Sacred Hindu treatises, Katha Upanishad, which were written between 800BC and 200 BC says:

      "Abiding in the midst of ignorance, thinking themselves wise and learned, fools go aimlessly hither and thither, like blind led by the blind."

      The thief quote - duuuuh!

      September 23, 2011 at 1:50 pm |
    • THE BROWN NOTE

      why do people keep quoting what jesus said like any of us care

      if he ever existed hes friggin dead

      and good riddance too

      weve got enough problems in this world

      we dont need more jesus promotion

      yeah yeah weve all heard the story about the three wise men and aliens guiding them and blah blah about how his mother wasnt a virgin so she probably got knocked up playing just the tip and he got a little premature

      and then he lived and chatted and people made up fake stories about his miracles none of which there is proof for other than a poorly written fiction novel that cant keep a story straight

      and blah blah blah

      then he got whiped and sewn to a cross by really big needles

      and then he got stuffed in a cave and his buddies played a prank and stole his body so everyone would think he rose from the dead

      the real laugh is on the mongrels that actually think all of this is true

      September 23, 2011 at 7:47 pm |
  16. RichXX

    Christian have always spoke of love while being violent. But as a non-Christian I support the death penalty. I support a shorter appeals process for those such as the Carr brothers convicted in Wichita Kansas of brutal murders. They were not found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, but were found absolutely guilty. They are a threat to their guards and a slight threat to escape. Granted the chances of escape are slim, but the chances would be even less if they were dead. There is not the slightest doubt in my mind they would kill again. Therefore I am for there being executed as soon as possible. And all others convicted of similar crimes and absolutely guilty. Before you knock me for saying absolutely guilty, research the case and review the roomfuls of evidence.

    September 23, 2011 at 10:48 am |
    • JohnQuest

      I am absolutely against Capital Punishment, I think it's barbaric and is doesn't keep us safe. Besides, your basic issue, as I read you is, they MAY kill again, you might be right but it is okay to kill someone for what they might do in some future time? And how is your rational for killing any different from their rational for killing, you can not consider yourself morally superior if you are making the same decision they made.

      September 23, 2011 at 10:55 am |
    • HeavenSent

      John Quest, lets see what you write if a loved one was viciously murdered ... just for sport.

      Amen.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:47 pm |
  17. JohnQuest

    Most (but certainly not all) non believers I talk to are against Capital Punishment and Abortions, it seems to me on the moral questions non believers\Atheist are not only correct but consistent. If you are wondering what I mean by correct, I mean they take a higher moral\ethical ground.

    September 23, 2011 at 10:45 am |
  18. Doc Vestibule

    Jesus explicitly approved of the killings in the Old Testament.
    "And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words ... It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city."
    Matthew 10:14-15
    "But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. "
    Matthew 24:37
    "As it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man ... the flood came, and destroyed them all. Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot ... the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all ... Remember Lot's wife."
    Luke 17:26-32

    Total number of people killed by God in the Bible: 2,270,365
    Total number of people killed by Satan in the Bible: 10

    September 23, 2011 at 10:30 am |
    • Mike from CT

      "And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words ... It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city."
      Matthew 10:14-15

      Good quote, as you clearly see, Jesus does not tell people to kill but warns of God's final righteous and just judgement because evil can not win.

      "But as the days of Noe[sic] were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. "
      Matthew 24:37
      Again see above.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:07 pm |
    • derp

      "Total number of people killed by God in the Bible: 2,270,365
      Total number of people killed by Satan in the Bible: 10"

      Wow, god really kicked his azz.

      September 23, 2011 at 12:36 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Doc Zero, you forgot to mention that 2,270,365 loved and followed satan and did evil.

      Amen.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:50 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @HeavenSent
      Yes, I'm sure the 40+ children killed by bears sent by God as punishment for making bald jokes were a Satanic cult.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:59 pm |
    • THE BROWN NOTE

      people who reject that angry child of the bible they call god are really satan lovers huh

      you really think that

      satan doesnt exist

      stupid people do stupid things because theyre stupid

      take christians for example

      they believe jesus is going to come back even though the bible shows us that he isnt because he was supposed to return 2000 years ago

      believing in something that was supposed to happen 2000 years ago and thinking its still gonna happen is stupid

      let me guess

      christians think satan put that in the bible as a trick i bet

      its a trick jesus was just kidding and hes going to come back any minute

      give me a break

      take some responsibility for your own actions you hypocrite christians

      satan doesnt make you do anything

      you make the choices on your own to be the bottom of the barrel worst garbage known to mankind

      oh but satan made me do it

      talk about self righteous you cant even take responsibility for anything

      no wonder you love the bible so much

      it absolves you of any guilt for all of the hateful things you all do

      christians are the worst people i have ever known

      September 23, 2011 at 7:55 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      "stupid people do stupid things because theyre stupid"
      Like double spacing to make whatever crap they are posting seem more important than what it is. Why not just write in caps TBN?

      September 23, 2011 at 7:56 pm |
    • THE BROWN NOTE

      im not a christian

      otherwise i might

      those types like to shout on street corners

      oh no double space offends

      keep grasping for straws swain

      thats all i ever see you doing

      September 23, 2011 at 11:12 pm |
  19. Jesus got the death penalty. Death 1, Christians 0

    Christians being consistent? HAHAHAHA!
    Those hypocrites can't even keep their own interpretations straight.

    As for the NT supporting the death penalty, Jesus himself showed the way by getting the death penalty himself.
    He thought it was great. Too bad he can't show up to do it again. He's dead.

    September 23, 2011 at 10:24 am |
    • Alfonzo Muchanzo

      May God have mercy on your soul.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:32 am |
    • HeavenSent

      Jesus got the death penalty. Death 1, Christians 0, you're just a heathen that constantly changes handles to hide when you spew your babble.

      Amen.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:53 pm |
    • THE BROWN NOTE

      what god

      let me know when that liar messiah of yours returns

      September 23, 2011 at 7:56 pm |
  20. SilverTrail

    Judicial justice. Simple and clear. Those who unlawfully take another's life lose it. All offenders are given time to consider their lives and repent before execution.

    September 23, 2011 at 10:21 am |
    • JohnQuest

      Does this include the people that take the life of someone that "did not" commit the crime they are accused of. I'm not saying this guy is not guilty, I don't know, I would submit that you really don't know either.

      September 23, 2011 at 10:49 am |
    • SilverTrail

      I can't think that far.

      September 23, 2011 at 11:06 am |
    • TruthPrevails

      Wow, this proves how you fail to pay attention to the news or at least news that might go against what you believe...instead you plug your ears to the facts!! 7 of 9 people recanted their testimony...that is enough reasonable doubt to say to the average person that maybe Troy Davis deserved another trial. I can't say whether or not Troy Davis was guilty or not but I do believe that given everything in the very least he should have been granted a stay of execution and allowed to live.
      Only in extreme cases does one deserve the death penalty-where it can be proven without an ounce of doubt that the person is guilty. (ie; Clifford Olson who admitted to killing 11 children...fortunately for him he is Canadian; Ted Bundy; Jeffrey Dahmer; John Wayne Gacy...all of whom have been proven beyond a reasonable doubt and directly linked to their crimes.)

      September 23, 2011 at 11:15 am |
    • HeavenSent

      JohnQuest, where were his injuries then, when fighting off the "cough" real killer? Oh. No injuries!

      Amen.

      September 23, 2011 at 1:56 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.