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My Take: Are evangelicals dangerous?
Many evangelicals want to ban abortion, but does that mean they want theocracy?
October 15th, 2011
10:00 PM ET

My Take: Are evangelicals dangerous?

Editor's Note: R. Albert Mohler, Jr., is president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, the flagship school of the Southern Baptist Convention and one of the largest seminaries in the world.

By R. Albert Mohler, Jr., Special to CNN

Here we go again.

Every four years, with every new presidential election cycle, public voices sound the alarm that the evangelicals are back. What is so scary about America’s evangelical Christians?

Just a few years ago, author Kevin Phillips told intellectual elites to run for cover, claiming that well-organized evangelicals were attempting to turn America into a theocratic state. In “American Theocracy,” Phillips warned of the growing influence of Bible-believing, born-again, theologically conservative voters who were determined to create a theocracy.

Writer Michelle Goldberg, meanwhile, has warned of a new Christian nationalism, based in “dominion theology.” Chris Hedges topped that by calling conservative Christians “American fascists.”

And so-called New Atheists like Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris claim that conservative Christians are nothing less than a threat to democracy. They prescribe atheism and secularism as the antidotes.

This presidential cycle, the alarms have started earlier than usual. Ryan Lizza, profiling Rep. Michele Bachmann for The New Yorker, informed his readers that “Bachmann belongs to a generation of Christian conservatives whose views have been shaped by institutions, tracts, and leaders not commonly known to secular Americans, or even to most Christians.”

Change just a few strategic words and the same would be true of Barack Obama or any other presidential candidate. Every candidate is shaped by influences not known to all and by institutions that other Americans might find strange.

What stories like this really show is that the secular elites assume that their own institutions and leaders are normative.

The New Yorker accused Bachmann of being concerned with developing a Christian worldview, ignoring the fact that every thinking person operates out of some kind of worldview. The article treated statements about wifely submission to husbands and Christian influence in art as bizarre and bellicose.

When Rick Perry questioned the theory of evolution, Dawkins launched into full-on apoplexy, wondering aloud how anyone who questions evolution could be considered intelligent, even as polls indicate that a majority of Americans question evolution.

Bill Keller, then executive editor of The New York Times, topped all the rest by seeming to suggest that conservative Christians should be compared to those who believe in space aliens. He complained that “when it comes to the religious beliefs of our would-be presidents, we are a little squeamish about probing too aggressively.”

Really? Earlier this month, comedian Penn Jillette - a well–known atheist - wrote a very serious op-ed complaining of the political influence of “bugnut Christians,” in the pages of The Los Angeles Times, no less. Detect a pattern here?

By now, this is probably being read as a complaint against the secular elites and prominent voices in the mainstream media. It’s not.

If evangelicals intend to engage public issues and cultural concerns, we have to be ready for the scrutiny and discomfort that comes with disagreement over matters of importance. We have to risk being misunderstood - and even misrepresented - if we intend to say anything worth hearing.

Are evangelicals dangerous? Well, certainly not in the sense that more secular voices warn. The vast majority of evangelicals are not attempting to create a theocracy, or to oppose democracy.

To the contrary, evangelicals are dangerous to the secularist vision of this nation and its future precisely because we are committed to participatory democracy.

As Christians committed to the Bible, evangelicals have learned to advocate on behalf of the unborn, believing that every single human being, at every stage of development, is made in God’s image.

Evangelicals worry about the fate of marriage and the family, believing that the pattern for human relatedness set out in Scripture will lead to the greatest human flourishing.

We are deeply concerned about a host of moral and cultural issues, from how to address poverty to how to be good stewards of the earth, and on some of these there is a fairly high degree of disagreement even among us.

Above all, evangelicals are those who believe that Jesus Christ is Lord and are most concerned about telling others about Jesus. Most of America’s evangelical Christians are busy raising their children, working to support their families and investing energy in their local churches.

But over recent decades, evangelical Christians have learned that the gospel has implications for every dimension of life, including our political responsibility.

We’re dangerous only to those who want more secular voices to have a virtual monopoly in public life.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of R. Albert Mohler, Jr.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Opinion • Politics

soundoff (5,318 Responses)
  1. W.G.

    There´s a lot of comments from people who do not know anything about being Christian . Yet in a world crisis
    who is it that´s always first to come to help whether it´s a Muslim or Buddhists country , Christians . #
    Yet we´r persecuted by people who blame Christians for persecution Atheists . Mao , stalin , hitler , polpot
    all killed millions of upon millions of people , . Yeah , Yeah the Crusades , the inquisition (Yawn) these were not
    done by Evangelical Christians but by the Catholic church well known for persecuting evangelical Christians .
    You Atheist need to get your lies right .

    October 16, 2011 at 8:58 am |
    • LOL

      oh the Catholics stopped doing that deca........well years ago. time for you guys to get with the program too.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:00 am |
    • Central Srutinizer

      @WG
      You don't have a single fact to back up anything you said. Idiot.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:12 am |
  2. Josh

    Probably the funniest thing about most of your comments is that it is just more proof that Dr Moehler is right....... Athiest are so insecure in their own faith that they have to crittize ours. I have always wondered why they feel the need to make fun of Christians or critize them. Then one day while I was teaching 8th graders at my school it hit me.....They are just like 8th graders....when they feel insecure about something they have to make fun of it......So aitheist = 8th graders.

    October 16, 2011 at 8:57 am |
    • Saturn

      Josh, I'd like to explain the issue of faith vs. reason to you in a way that you could understand it, but unfortunately this page won't let me post comments in crayon.

      October 16, 2011 at 8:58 am |
    • kimsland

      Christianity negative 2000 years.
      Religious people are funny

      October 16, 2011 at 9:00 am |
    • W.G.

      to saturn- Well if that´all you have to write in ( crayon) then maybe you should´nt be posting maybe you should grow up
      and read before you speak

      October 16, 2011 at 9:01 am |
    • Tao2112

      Evangelicals believe in an invisible man = Pre Schoolers

      October 16, 2011 at 9:02 am |
    • ObjectiveOpinion

      Josh, 8th graders are pretty old for a catholic priest, aren't they?

      October 16, 2011 at 9:03 am |
    • Dan

      Josh, you are mistaken. We are 2nd graders and I want my cotton candy please.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:04 am |
    • Brendan

      Why do Christians constantly want to push their views on society on the rest of the world? The abortion debate, legalizing gay marriage etc... The reasons atheists make fun of christians is because they don't accept that other people have different views then themselves. Atheists don't care what you believe as long as you don't try to get others to follow. Christians selectively choose which parts of the bible they would like to follow, how many Christians protest against gay marriage have cheated on their spouses?

      Also when complaining about how atheists mock Christians, you should not be insulting them at the same time. It makes you a hypocrite and somewhat pathetic

      October 16, 2011 at 9:06 am |
    • Central Srutinizer

      @Josh
      Believe what you want. But if you come in here, bring some facts. You are the one doing the name calling.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:14 am |
  3. Tom

    I believe most of the wars, murders, genocide and hatred in the world has been due to the religious beliefs of people. From the threat that Jesus was to the Romans to the Crusades, to the Catholic church and the Popes, to the persecution of Jews for thousands of years and of course to the intolerance and current problems with Islam and it's believers. That's why our government was wisely founded upon the absolute belief of separation of church and state. Religion has no place in the government and should stay in the houses of worship, in your home and in your heart. It should NOT be forced upon everyone else whether it's abortion, issue of gay people or any secular decisions that are your PERSONAL beliefs...live YOUR life according to your beliefs but do not try to force your beliefs on the rest of society.

    October 16, 2011 at 8:57 am |
    • W.G.

      to Tom – Well tom your WRONG ! Pol pot , Mao , hitler, stalin , all were Atheist and like now are still persecuting Christians .
      You talk about the crusades and hey lets throw in the inquisition these were not performed by Christians rather they were
      done by catholics . Yes Biblically speaking THERE is a DIFFERENCE . The people doing most of the killing nowadays are
      Atheist ( Chinese and Russian ) and people that are not Christians namely muslims . Where have you seen Real Christians
      Killing anybody . Real Christians do not believe in Killing .

      October 16, 2011 at 9:10 am |
    • Central Srutinizer

      @WG
      This is my rifle. There are many like it but this one is mine.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:23 am |
  4. Altay

    Mr. Mohler, You are the one who got it wrong. Evangelicals are true American fascists. These bigots are not only dangaorus to the US but also to the whole world.

    October 16, 2011 at 8:56 am |
  5. LaPlut

    Anyone can be spiritual, but religion does separate people. Religion must go!

    October 16, 2011 at 8:56 am |
  6. Dan

    All of you liberals and critical thinkers are idiots. We have Jesus who will save us. This place is temporary place that will be destroyed anyway by all mighty Loving God (our lord Jesus Christ). Once we screw up the Earth, we will walk next to Jesus Christ for eternity in heaven, AND muslims and the rest of 99% of people that God created are defects that will burn in hell . So, let's continue spewing CO2 into the atmosphere and start new wars.

    October 16, 2011 at 8:56 am |
    • JK

      Gee wiz buddy, your message sounds so Christian! I'm sure Jesus would high five you for it. Bet you wish you could have lived back in the dinosaur days, ridng em, hunting em...awesome!

      October 16, 2011 at 9:15 am |
    • TruthPrevails

      Well if that is how you feel, according to Harold Camping the world will be ending in 5 days...you should be preparing now instead of wasting your time on here telling lies and sounding like a wanton child. Without proof and evidence heaven is still only a story created to make your christians feel good about being heathens here on this planet. It is sad that you live for a place that does not exist and will never be proven to exist....what a complete waste of the one life you are guaranteed of!

      October 16, 2011 at 9:31 am |
  7. You Hypocrites

    "Evangelicals worry about the fate of marriage and the family, believing that the pattern for human relatedness set out in Scripture will lead to the greatest human flourishing."

    Get back to us when evangelicals start treating divorce like they treat the gay issue. Divorce really is a CHOICE. Jesus of course said God forbids divorce and says nothing about gay people. Of course that gets ignored, it's much easier to throw stones a gays.

    Divorce is a CHOICE. God created "Adam and Eve," NOT "Adam and Eve, then Adam and Cindy, then Adam and Kathy."

    October 16, 2011 at 8:55 am |
  8. kimsland

    Teach your children NO religion NO
    And remember christians don't always look like wide eyed monsters.
    Protect your children from ignorance, teach your kids the truth.
    There's no such thing as religion, there's no such thing as religion.
    People who think they are following their pathetic religion are dangerous and should be avoided at all costs.
    Keep religion out of anywhere that kids may have access to.
    Kids religion is FALSE, stay away from it, they are scary people.

    October 16, 2011 at 8:54 am |
    • Post Evangelical

      My spiritual father once said to me "if what you read in the Bible (or hear about from believers) makes no sense to you, than throw it out." In fact the exact opposite has been true for me. When I read the words of Jesus, however diffused they may be after centuries of edits, they speak to the heart and the reality of my life.

      I look forward to strengthening my faith by being challenged by atheists, and by those religious leaders who preach questioning rather than blind obedience.

      October 16, 2011 at 10:11 am |
  9. Steve

    The political right has hijacked Christian minds, why? Because their minds are easily influenced and can be converted i.e. "born again". What a perfect pool to use for a political agenda that can incorporate it's values and create a base using the idea of "Conservative". So my question is why the two are so intertwined? Was this done more for creating a political movement? I say this because the mind of religion and it's members can be swayed because they are looking for answers, they want guidance. I would ask Christians to look at their leaders and take a good look at what is pushing their agenda.

    October 16, 2011 at 8:54 am |
    • LOL

      how do you know it's not the other way around with the hijacking :o)

      October 16, 2011 at 8:57 am |
    • Steve

      I would say it starts with the religious leaders. If we look at the Prohibition movement it was pushed by a religious agenda turned to a political movement. They used votes to push politicians.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:12 am |
  10. Dina

    As a secularist, I DO NOT want secularists to have a monopoly. I have no problem with your beliefs, I just don't want to live by them. The evangelists purpose is to try and convince me of your beliefs. That's fine too. But you cross the line when you try to legislate your particular religious beliefs.

    October 16, 2011 at 8:53 am |
    • Greg

      Don't all public officials bring their own beliefs about God and moral issues to their jobs? Aren't leaders being disingenuous if they don't make decisions based on what they feel is right?

      October 16, 2011 at 9:03 am |
  11. Ernesto Castillo

    Albert Mohler is a delusional man with an agenda. period.

    October 16, 2011 at 8:51 am |
    • Greg

      Again, throwing stones without really saying something yourself.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:08 am |
  12. ObjectiveOpinion

    Religions are populated by mindless sheep, with a herd mentality. The leaders of the religious groups are there for power and control.

    October 16, 2011 at 8:51 am |
    • Mike

      No people who actually follow what the bible says are not mindless at all... In fact it's alot harder to live their lives to a higher standard then people who just mindlessly go through their lives.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:01 am |
    • Beverlee

      There are more mindless sheep in Occupy the World than in all Christian religions around the world.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:02 am |
    • BAAAAA

      We are all sheep. If you think you are not, you are sadly mistaken. You are a sheep just like me. The only difference is you follow another herd.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:08 am |
    • Dave

      Actually they are mindless. They are not living to hire standard at all and they rarely, if at all, think for themselves. And I'm not a sheep, I quite capable of thinking on my own.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:29 am |
  13. Dennis

    This is the more depressing opinion I hope to read for a long time.

    October 16, 2011 at 8:51 am |
  14. Colin

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    October 16, 2011 at 8:50 am |
    • Central Srutinizer

      Colin, excellent post as usual.

      Other idiots, adamandeve.com – go get our groove on.

      October 16, 2011 at 8:54 am |
    • Saturn

      Colin, you make interesting and thoughtful posts... but I hope you realize no one is going to read all that.

      October 16, 2011 at 8:55 am |
    • Steve

      Colin I read your whole post and find it, well, excellent. As we know some live by the idea of "Ignorance is bliss". My only visual of religious groups is of three monkeys covering their senses.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:04 am |
    • Central Srutinizer

      I read it all. Keep 'em coming Colin.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:06 am |
    • Colin

      Thnaks Steve, CS. Saturn – it could be worse. Imagine being stuck next to me on a plane -:)

      October 16, 2011 at 9:06 am |
    • paul

      The only way the Noah's Ark could have worked is IF the ship was a DNA Bank for all of the species. The would make it a very high tech affair. But then its just a story...

      October 16, 2011 at 9:09 am |
    • Beverlee

      Now I would like you to write the entire post bashing the Muslim religion in the Muslim world and see how your words are met. Oh, and be sure to give them you real name and address. Coward...just like the rest of the left. You will say it about Judeo-Christian world but never about Muslim, Hindu, ...

      October 16, 2011 at 9:09 am |
    • Amanda

      This was the best written explanation of the fallacy of creationism that I have ever read. Thank you for sharing it- maybe it will open an eye that has remained shut tight for reasons of "faith." I think the rabid unthinking churchgoers would do themselves a big favor by looking up the meaning of the word "allegory" and applying it to the bible. I have never understood why the bible has to be literal in their eyes in order to be holy. Anyway, thanks for making my Sunday morning.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:16 am |
    • Atheistlulz

      Saturn is right. Your paragraphs have far too much text to reach the intended audience. The words also have more than 2 syllables. Your average "christian conservative" wont be able to fumble through the writing and come out with anything coherent. If you could find a way to throw in some obama hate and trash "liberals" you could probably hold their attention.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:20 am |
    • Wheels

      @Saturn
      I read every word of Colin's very insightful post. I think most of the people who won't read it are young earth creationist who know the facts are squarely against them. This is the challenge I face every time a Christian knocks on my door in hopes of converting me is that when I bring facts up to them they can't seem to get off my property fast enough!

      October 16, 2011 at 9:23 am |
    • Colin

      Beverlee, The Koran includes the Adam and Eve myth. Everything I said is as germane a criticism of Islam as it is of Christianity – and Judaism for that matter.

      Muslims and Jews who take it literally (and there are many) as just as crazy as Christians who do.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:24 am |
    • Jesus Christ

      Excellent ponts.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:24 am |
    • CC

      Dear Colin, you're very astute. You must realize that not all Christians are creationists, however. Not all Christians interpret the Gospels the same. For example, you might enjoy reading up on someone called Alber the Great. He's a Doctor of the Church from the middle ages. He is famed for his scientific investigations and his belief that science supports religion. You might also enjoy the works of Thomas Aquinas, again, a Doctor of the Church with a brilliant intellectual mind.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:44 am |
    • Colin

      Thanks CC. I have obviously heard of TA, but not Alber the great. I will give it a look.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:54 am |
    • VoxVerum

      I just did.

      October 16, 2011 at 10:22 am |
    • Post Evangelical

      Many scientists and anthropologists believe in the fossil record, DNA and God. You don't need evidence of an ark full of saved creatures to believe in something spiritual. To quote another part of the Bible, "faith is the evidence of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen" – Hebrews 11.1

      October 16, 2011 at 10:48 am |
  15. Ktalgsto

    Why is secular good in Muslim countries but not in America?

    October 16, 2011 at 8:48 am |
    • LOL

      we let the women play outdoors. they should, too.

      October 16, 2011 at 8:50 am |
  16. Dan

    Joe, two points for you. I have to repost your words.

    Hey Albert,
    Tell me if I got this right. Your God got tired of running the earth from afar so one earthly day It zapped down some of Its perfect God milk into the womb of a 13 year old female human, then pushed himself out of her body 9 months later appearing as the perfect non-sinning God in baby man form, then disappeared for 30 years, then re-appeared walking around town barefoot and lecturing for 3 years, then killed itself then came back three days later to prove to 11 or 12 guys it really was God, then disappeared again never to be seen or heard of, all for the purpose of lifting the curse that It originally put on all mankind when an early woman at an apple from the tree in her garden that It not only put there but knew before It put It there that the early woman would eat.

    Does that about sum it up?

    October 16, 2011 at 8:47 am |
    • Post Evangelical

      Our interpretations can always summarize yet entirely miss the point. The point is the miraclulousness of God - in that such an obscure and apparently rediculous gospel, at least the way you've presented it, did in fact inform the faith of the whole world, with millions of believers in Christ Jesus.

      October 16, 2011 at 11:37 am |
  17. LOL

    "Yes, because Stalin's purges were so much fun." a certain group of believers east of here hasn't developed any original technology besides a gallows capable of hanging more than 5 gays at once in the last 1500 years. Equating lack of religion with failed communist states is a logical fallacy. it's like saying all muslims are terr......wait bad example. you get the picture. 🙂

    October 16, 2011 at 8:47 am |
    • deist

      Its as exactly as illogical as blaming religion for humans behaving like humans since the dawn of time. The failure in your reasoning is that you believe humans need a reason to hate each other. The opposite is true, humans need a reason not to hate each other.

      October 16, 2011 at 8:50 am |
    • LOL

      very good point, but what causes humans to hate each other MUCH MORE BADDER FASTER WITH BOMBS AND BIG SWORDS AND GRENADES AND THE BLARING OF TRUMPETS?

      October 16, 2011 at 8:53 am |
    • LOL

      and dont forget the rewards in HEH-VEEEEEEEEEN.

      October 16, 2011 at 8:54 am |
    • deist

      The nature of being human. The question is how much worse would the world be without organized religion? At least this way you have huge swaths of humanity deciding its wrong to murder people because they are not family. Does that happen without religion? I don't think it does. I'm not sure civilization exists without great numbers of unrelated people organizing under a religion.

      October 16, 2011 at 8:57 am |
    • LOL

      i don't see where you're going to use religion as a basis for large groups of humanity NOT killing each other. LOL.

      October 16, 2011 at 8:59 am |
    • deist

      7,000,000,000 humans of proof surround you today.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:03 am |
  18. Rick McDaniel

    All religions are very, very dangerous, if they get too much power.........just exactly as Islam has become dangerous to the entire world, so too, can Christians.

    Remember the Inquisition!

    Do NOT allow religion to rule.

    October 16, 2011 at 8:47 am |
    • darkyam

      Yep, because we all know it's only the religious who have persecuted people. Atheists like Stalin, Lenin, Mao, and others were perfectly wonderful human beings. It's not religion that oppresses, it's people who love power who oppress. Religion has been just one excuse some of them use to justify their actions.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:09 am |
  19. Post Evangelical

    It's not what many Christians are but what we aren't that bothers me as a believer.

    if I am wrong why do we not speak out for the rights of the born as much as the unborn?
    If I am wrong why do we support leaders that will eliminate health and wellness for the poor, disabled and elderly?
    If I am wrong why do we so rarely speak out for peace, against weapons of mass destruction with the same fervor as other moral issues?

    As a Christian I know I am not alone in these concerns. Let us pray for a greater, deeper, more truthful voice.

    October 16, 2011 at 8:46 am |
    • Saturn

      Even though you're a Christian, you seem to be a thoughtful person, who cares deeply about true moral issues (that is, not just the moral dogma handed down by Christian leaders).

      Has it occurred to you that you could be every bit as thoughtful and moral even if you were to throw Christianity aside completely? You see, perhaps the problem isn't that Christianity has become corrupted... but that it was never right to begin with.

      October 16, 2011 at 8:51 am |
    • CC

      You must remember that Evangelicals do not represent all Christians. They are a small sub-set of a larger, general Christian community. The concerns you've listed here are actually issues that are at the heart of other theological teachings of Christianity. For example, the Catholic church believes in social justice for the poor and does not believe in capital punishment.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:29 am |
    • Post Evangelical

      Saturn, I have already been to many '"galaxies" of thought and belief and back. In that exploration, as a Christian who tries, by God's Grace to be inclusive rather than exclusve, I am by no means alone. Google Thomas Merton and you will see exactly where I am coming from. Thomas Merton, or Father Louis as he was called as a Roman Catholic monk, said many of the same or similar things 50 years ago. His many writings culminating in the Asian Journals are a testiment to this universality of understanding as a strengthening of our specific faith.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:44 am |
    • nostupidity

      Pray, pray as much as you want. There is no god to listen to you and answer your prayer. People have been praying for thousands of years to no avail. It is time to realize that praying is not a useful tool!

      October 16, 2011 at 1:50 pm |
  20. Colin

    Can any evangelical (or other person) point me to some scripture that praises healthy skepticism and intelligence? I know of much in support of blind, gulllible acceptance.

    October 16, 2011 at 8:45 am |
    • deist

      Who decided skeptism was healthy?

      October 16, 2011 at 8:47 am |
    • iamdeadlyserious

      Ok, deist. Now I'm sure that your name is a joke. But it really isn't a funny one.

      October 16, 2011 at 8:49 am |
    • Central Srutinizer

      I did.

      October 16, 2011 at 8:51 am |
    • deist

      I'm asking a question. I want to hear in his words why, not some talking point he heard from some religious nut job.

      October 16, 2011 at 8:51 am |
    • Colin

      Deist, because if one is skeptical of something one is told, one is much more liekly to analyze it for its veracity or falsity. This makes one less prone to believing in nonsense and less vulnerable to exploitation.

      October 16, 2011 at 8:57 am |
    • Earl Weaver

      deist, maybe the Jews that Hitler gassed.

      October 16, 2011 at 8:58 am |
    • deist

      And do you think civilization as whole could have ever existed without faith? If everyone, every single person alive, was questioning everything they were ever taught as truth? Why is murder wrong? Do you really want every single person alive to ponder their own answer to that question?

      October 16, 2011 at 9:01 am |
    • CBM

      Acts 17:11 Now the Bereans were of more noble character..., for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true

      October 16, 2011 at 9:06 am |
    • Deb

      Colin: Acts 17:11. "Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true." They ensure what they read was true, by examining the scriptures. They didn't just believe, they proved it out using all books, history, science. Today's issue: people either believe – or don't believe – based on falsehoods, incomplete information and not studying the Book.

      October 16, 2011 at 9:11 am |
    • Deb

      sorry. CBM's post didn't show on my laptop until after I posted. I wasn't copying him/her...just typing at a similar time. Good to know there is more than one of us! 🙂

      October 16, 2011 at 9:12 am |
    • Colin

      They "received the message with great eageness"" and checked it against scripture to test its validity. Doesn't sound kery skeptical to me. That the best you've got?

      October 16, 2011 at 9:33 am |
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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.