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My Take: The 3 biggest biblical misconceptions
The Bible presents us with an evolving story, writes John Shelby Spong.
December 29th, 2011
09:10 AM ET

My Take: The 3 biggest biblical misconceptions

Editor’s note: John Shelby Spong, a former Episcopal bishop of Newark, New Jersey, is author of "Re-Claiming the Bible for a Non-Religious World."

By John Shelby Spong, Special to CNN

The Bible is both a reservoir of spiritual insight and a cultural icon to which lip service is still paid in the Western world. Yet when the Bible is talked about in public by both believers and critics, it becomes clear that misconceptions abound.

To me, three misconceptions stand out and serve to make the Bible hard to comprehend.

First, people assume the Bible accurately reflects history. That is absolutely not so, and every biblical scholar recognizes it.

The facts are that Abraham, the biblically acknowledged founding father of the Jewish people, whose story forms the earliest content of the Bible, died about 900 years before the first story of Abraham was written in the Old Testament.

Actually, that's not in the Bible

Can a defining tribal narrative that is passed on orally for 45 generations ever be regarded as history, at least as history is understood today?

Moses, the religious genius who put his stamp on the religion of the Old Testament more powerfully than any other figure, died about 300 years before the first story of Moses entered the written form we call Holy Scripture.

This means that everything we know about Moses in the Bible had to have passed orally through about 15 generations before achieving written form. Do stories of heroic figures not grow, experience magnifying tendencies and become surrounded by interpretive mythology as the years roll by?

My Take: Bible condemns a lot, so why focus on homosexuality?

Jesus of Nazareth, according to our best research, lived between the years 4 B.C. and A.D. 30. Yet all of the gospels were written between the years 70 to 100 A.D., or 40 to 70 years after his crucifixion, and they were written in Greek, a language that neither Jesus nor any of his disciples spoke or were able to write.

Are the gospels then capable of being effective guides to history? If we line up the gospels in the time sequence in which they were written - that is, with Mark first, followed by Matthew, then by Luke and ending with John - we can see exactly how the story expanded between the years 70 and 100.

For example, miracles do not get attached to the memory of Jesus story until the eighth decade. The miraculous birth of Jesus is a ninth-decade addition; the story of Jesus ascending into heaven is a 10th-decade narrative.

In the first gospel, Mark, the risen Christ appears physically to no one, but by the time we come to the last gospel, John, Thomas is invited to feel the nail prints in Christ’s hands and feet and the spear wound in his side.

Perhaps the most telling witness against the claim of accurate history for the Bible comes when we read the earliest narrative of the crucifixion found in Mark’s gospel and discover that it is not based on eyewitness testimony at all.

My Take: Yes, the Bible really condemns homosexuality

Instead, it’s an interpretive account designed to conform the story of Jesus’ death to the messianic yearnings of the Hebrew Scriptures, including Psalm 22 and Isaiah 53.

The Bible interprets life from its particular perspective; it does not record in a factual way the human journey through history.

The second major misconception comes from the distorting claim that the Bible is in any literal sense “the word of God.” Only someone who has never read the Bible could make such a claim. The Bible portrays God as hating the Egyptians, stopping the sun in the sky to allow more daylight to enable Joshua to kill more Amorites and ordering King Saul to commit genocide against the Amalekites.

Can these acts of immorality ever be called “the word of God”? The book of Psalms promises happiness to the defeated and exiled Jews only when they can dash the heads of Babylonian children against the rocks! Is this “the word of God? What kind of God would that be?

The Bible, when read literally, calls for the execution of children who are willfully disobedient to their parents, for those who worship false gods, for those who commit adultery, for homosexual persons and for any man who has sex with his mother-in-law, just to name a few.

The Bible exhorts slaves to be obedient to their masters and wives to be obedient to their husbands. Over the centuries, texts like these, taken from the Bible and interpreted literally, have been used as powerful and evil weapons to support killing prejudices and to justify the cruelest kind of inhumanity.

The third major misconception is that biblical truth is somehow static and thus unchanging. Instead, the Bible presents us with an evolutionary story, and in those evolving patterns, the permanent value of the Bible is ultimately revealed.

It was a long road for human beings and human values to travel between the tribal deity found in the book of Exodus, who orders the death of the firstborn male in every Egyptian household on the night of the Passover, until we reach an understanding of God who commands us to love our enemies.

The transition moments on this journey can be studied easily. It was the prophet named Hosea, writing in the eighth century B.C., who changed God’s name to love. It was the prophet named Amos who changed God’s name to justice. It was the prophet we call Jonah who taught us that the love of God is not bounded by the limits of our own ability to love.

It was the prophet Micah who understood that beautiful religious rituals and even lavish sacrifices were not the things that worship requires, but rather “to do justice, love mercy and walk humbly with your God.” It was the prophet we call Malachi, writing in the fifth century B.C., who finally saw God as a universal experience, transcending all national and tribal boundaries.

One has only to look at Christian history to see why these misconceptions are dangerous. They have fed religious persecution and religious wars. They have fueled racism, anti-female biases, anti-Semitism and homophobia.They have fought against science and the explosion of knowledge.

The ultimate meaning of the Bible escapes human limits and calls us to a recognition that every life is holy, every life is loved, and every life is called to be all that that life is capable of being. The Bible is, thus, not about religion at all but about becoming deeply and fully human. It issues the invitation to live fully, to love wastefully and to have the courage to be our most complete selves.

That is why I treasure this book and why I struggle to reclaim its essential message for our increasingly non-religious world.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of John Shelby Spong.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Bible • Christianity • Opinion

soundoff (6,068 Responses)
  1. Fred

    How in the world could this man have possibly risen to the level of bishop? He doesn't believe the Bible, doesn't believe that there is such a thing as the "word of God", and he doesn't believe in the deity of Jesus. Basically, he's a lost man masquerading as a Christian.

    January 16, 2012 at 5:46 pm |
    • Blake

      My take: The biggest misconception is organized religion itself

      January 16, 2012 at 6:04 pm |
    • Burning ones

      yea. religion does stink!
      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1IAhDGYlpqY&w=640&h=360]
      best youtube video ive ever saw.

      January 16, 2012 at 6:18 pm |
  2. burningones~

    Please just know, God is love

    January 16, 2012 at 5:41 pm |
  3. sportzzz

    God sent his son here to be sacrificed so that we (those that will follow the cross) will have a way to be made right in the eyes of the lord. Souls will be separated come the judgement. For those who don't want to believe, well, there won't be a god for you. Think about that.

    January 16, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
    • Ha!

      I thought we were all his "sons" and many die everyday why are they not praised? You are not seeing the point in this guys rant nor the real meaning of the Bible... Which is just a guide line with some stories to keep you pondering! you need no religion to be accepted by the very "god" which you worship so. He would, if your Bible is right, be very accepting of any or all religions no none religion if they lived life to its best and treated all with love. This is the message you miss in the book you hole so dear. It is not the Word of God, you can tell after you read it and truly understand it...

      January 16, 2012 at 6:27 pm |
  4. Disciple

    John Shelby Spong perverts scripture. The bible is historical, it accurately tells the story of the wars between King Hezekiah and
    the Assyrian King Sennacherib. Sennacherib mentions Hezekiah and these wars on what is known as the Taylor Prism.

    January 16, 2012 at 3:31 pm |
    • Small 'c' christian

      Granted. Yet it completely fails to name the Pharaoh who freed the Israelites (and any Egyptologist can recite the names of all Pharaohs), fails to explain how Noah managed to obtain animals from Madagascar, Australia and Antartica, and somehow creates entire countries that only exist within it's own pages.

      Yes, the writers got some things right. But by no means all.

      January 17, 2012 at 12:34 am |
  5. Confused in Cleveland

    “It is absurd for the Evolutionist to complain that it is unthinkable for an admittedly unthinkable God to make everything out of nothing, and then pretend that it is more thinkable that nothing should turn itself into everything.”
    ― G.K. Chesterton

    January 16, 2012 at 2:54 pm |
    • EnjaySea

      Chesterton's assertion that those who accept evolution think that it is unthinkable that something can come from nothing, is incorrect. He then uses this incorrect notion to attempt to prove a point regarding religion. He is, therefore, proposing a straw-man argument.

      From the big bang all the way through evolution, we see, and accept that substance can and does build upon an apparent lack of substance. We don't find this impossible - we find it fascinating, and embrace it.

      The religious, in contrast, can't accept it, and explain it with their war god Yahweh. Something can't come from nothing, therefore it must have been created by our general in the heavens. Whereas evolution is plausible and makes logical sense, the notion that this creature who spends all his time destroying civilizations and tossing people into pits of fire, would have had anything to do with something as beautiful as creation, is frankly, quite laughable.

      January 16, 2012 at 3:32 pm |
    • Ray

      But don't Christians assert that God came from nothing? Or at least he "always was"?

      January 16, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
    • EnjaySea

      Right, the preferred stance is "he always was". The problem they need to solve is that if complexity requires a designer then god, who must be terribly complex, would also require a designer. The infinite god argument seems to be a handy way to side-step that problem. But the fact that infinity must be invoked, just points out the flaw in the original argument.

      I would counter with the proposition, what if the universe "always was". That gets rid of the something-from-nothing problem in the natural explanation as well. Either way, you have to accept either something-from-nothing, or infinite existence, so the argument doesn't really get us very far, regardless what you believe.

      January 16, 2012 at 4:51 pm |
    • Gnosis

      @NJC

      Of course you set up a strawman argument pitting faith against science. Surely, being the pseudo scientist you are trying to pass yourself off as here, you would know that the "father" of the "Big Bang" theory was a Catholic priest.

      January 16, 2012 at 7:51 pm |
  6. novoodoo

    if you believe in the bible, you too are delusional.

    January 16, 2012 at 8:40 am |
  7. Matt

    Ok people, I've been on this blog for two weeks now. Here's what I've concluded: 10% are decent people, interested in learning something and/or stretching their comfort level – both believers, and non. 30% are fundamentalist Christians who in fact, know very little about the Bible, and even less about science, history, and philosophy. 60% are angry, angry atheists, who know very little about science, and even less about the Bible, history, and philosophy. But there's no telling them that! They think high school science class, The Discovery & History Channels, and self-selected books and Internet articles comprise the bulk of human knowledge.

    I know the fundies are reacting to something. But I also surmise that MOST of these so-called atheists are also reacting to one or more of the following realities: 1) dumb, domineering, possibly abusive and/or alcoholic parents 2) being a picked-on nerd, or geek. 3) being humiliated or abused by a clergyperson 4) being themselves an addict of some kind.

    There are other possibilities, of course, but experience tells me I'm in the right ballpark.

    January 15, 2012 at 9:56 pm |
    • Ironicus

      What a joke. I can beat the shlt out of you with one hand in any science field you care to name.
      And you are a tone-troll. You call us "angry" like that means anything. You make assertions without proof, you make up statistics, you lie when you say you've been here for only two weeks, and you are nothing but a kid who thinks he can fight a smarter stronger adult.
      Well, all I can say is that you are really, really stupid and would prefer you to play videogames instead of making your whole religion look even worse than usual by being such a clueless dipshlt about your religion. We've had people come here who make you look like a young callow teenager with fuzz on that "place"....you know...down "there"...!
      So when you have grown, THEN come here and post, because, frankly, your posts are pretty lame and weak and not worth bothering with. I don't see the need to let kids post here, but what can you do? It's the internet.

      January 15, 2012 at 10:27 pm |
    • Matt

      See above. I rest my case!

      January 15, 2012 at 10:34 pm |
    • Ironicus

      😀

      January 15, 2012 at 10:40 pm |
    • momoya

      I'm glad to have your opinion concerning what groups post here and why. What action do you recommend, then?

      January 16, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
    • EnjaySea

      Matt, your post started off sounding rather level-headed and neutral, and well though out. By the end of your post you were calling names and thumbing your nose at people, pretty much like all the rest of the posters that you find so lacking.

      January 16, 2012 at 3:40 pm |
  8. Observer

    http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

    January 15, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
    • momoya

      So just the naked hook hanging in the water, huh? Go get some bait for that thing.

      January 16, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
  9. arcandciel

    Well why don't you publish it? It was my last one anyway!...

    January 15, 2012 at 3:51 pm |
  10. arcandciel

    I wonder what happened to my message which was clearly anti mormon. Is the electronics defective?

    January 15, 2012 at 3:50 pm |
  11. novoodoo

    tebow loses. Crucifiction II, a sequel to 2,000 years since the last time jesus was nailed. He loses again.

    January 15, 2012 at 1:06 pm |
    • Matt

      You better get moving. You don't want to be late for your MENSA meeting, and D & D starts right after that! Run along now.

      January 15, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
  12. novoodoo

    biggest misconceptions is that the bible has some godly value. Fact is that it's man's concoction with parts; rewritten, tossed out and added.

    January 15, 2012 at 12:49 pm |
    • Matt

      Your conclusion that God has nothing to do with the Bible – is that a demonstrable truth, or is that your opinion?

      January 15, 2012 at 12:55 pm |
    • novoodoo

      logic and common sense would clearly indicate a god had nothing to do with writing a bible. Where is your god now?? Why do you have to interpret this bible? A perfect being would know interpretations would have twists. A real perfect being would know all and a bible would need interpretation or translation. Get it? Lack perfection, smells like man all over it.

      January 15, 2012 at 12:59 pm |
    • novoodoo

      no interpretation or translation needed from a bible written by an all perfect being. Man wouldn't need to speak for a god, a real god would do it himself.

      January 15, 2012 at 1:01 pm |
    • Matt

      I'll take your reply as, "it's my opinion."
      Thanks for sharing!

      January 15, 2012 at 1:07 pm |
    • novoodoo

      You mean a logical deduction.. Thank you

      January 15, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
    • backup666

      @Matt

      Let me demonstrate that for you. The book of Mark, Matthew, Luke and John are not first hand accounts. These books were recorded from either unknown or known references. Here is one way that you can tell that Mark wrote his Gospel first because Matthew and Luke reference his book on several occasions. A common theme of Mark was Jesus either became angry or showed anger.

      Mark 3:5  And when he had looked round about on them with ANGER, being grieved for the hardness of their hearts, he saith unto the man, Stretch forth thine hand. And he stretched it out: and his hand was restored whole as the other.

      Matthew 12:13  Then saith he to the man, Stretch forth thine hand. And he stretched it forth; and it was restored whole, like as the other.

      Luke 6:6  And it came to pass also on another sabbath, that he entered into the synagogue and taught: and there was a man whose right hand was withered.

      As you can see, Matthew and Luke did not want their readers to know that Jesus was angry. Here is another example.

      Mark 1:41  And Jesus, moved with COMPASSION, put forth his hand, and touched him, and saith unto him, I will; be thou clean.

      Matthew 8:3  And Jesus put forth his hand, and touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed.

      Luke 5:13  And he put forth his hand, and touched him, saying, I will: be thou clean. And immediately the leprosy departed from him.

      Throughout the Gospel, Matthew and Luke omitted the word(s) anger or became angry where Mark had placed them, but here Matthew and Luke omit compassion. This is a translation error because compassion in Mark 1:41 should be anger.

      January 15, 2012 at 8:09 pm |
    • Matt

      And how does that negate any inspiration from God, let alone his existence?

      January 15, 2012 at 8:18 pm |
    • backup666

      That the bible was written and edit by man and that the bible contains many errors. If God wanted us to have a book, that book would not contains so many errors.

      January 15, 2012 at 8:23 pm |
    • Matt

      Hmm! You seem to have iron clad logic. If God wanted ..... Then we wouldn't have had.....!

      You'd make a great pastor. (You, to a grieving mother and father who just had their 6 yr old girl killed by a drunk driver) "If God had wanted you to keep that child, he wouldn't have let the town drunk kill her!"

      January 15, 2012 at 8:35 pm |
    • Matt

      If god had wanted us to love him, obey him, and love one another, he wouldn't have given us free will! Ergo, god doesn't want that, OR he doesn't exist!!!

      January 15, 2012 at 8:39 pm |
    • backup666

      @Matt

      There errors are just a small portion of the bible. I also talking about a "superior being" that is depicited as being loving. That is not the truth. Here are some examples:

      Numbers 31:16-18  Behold, these caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to commit trespass against the LORD in the matter of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the LORD. Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.

      Ezekiel 23:20  For she doted upon their paramours, whose flesh is as the flesh of asses, and whose issue is like the issue of horses.

      Would you want your children reading these verses? The problem is the pastors only show you the nice verses in the bible. In addition, the bible have similar stories taken from the ancient Egyptians (Horus), folklore from the Asian Minor and the Sumerians. Plus, there is too much hocus pocus. Jesus is god or then he is his son combine that with the holy spirit.

      January 15, 2012 at 9:20 pm |
  13. Seer

    Mr Spong is a stooge of a Vatican plot to dissuade belief in God, and to hide the fact that, well, there us no God! The Church knows this, but they want to consolidate power in the pope.

    January 15, 2012 at 12:37 pm |
    • novoodoo

      vatican=mafia
      pope=pedo

      January 15, 2012 at 1:02 pm |
  14. JESUS CHRIST

    I've been turning Prophets into profits since 4,000 B.C.

    January 15, 2012 at 12:33 pm |
    • Redrum

      I understand your middle initial is "H". Is that correct?

      January 15, 2012 at 12:42 pm |
    • Matt

      @JC

      Typical Jew!

      January 15, 2012 at 12:52 pm |
    • rzzzll

      Matt – Typical Jew hating heretic. Without Jews you wouldn't have that tritheism called "christianity" that is corrupted by Greco-Roman thought.

      January 15, 2012 at 8:00 pm |
    • Matt

      I'm a heretic? In what way??? By what measure of orthodoxy do you judge me a heretic?

      January 15, 2012 at 8:15 pm |
  15. Tim Hurst

    excellent article.

    January 15, 2012 at 12:28 pm |
  16. Loranvoss

    THE TRUTH IS ONLY IN THE BOOK OF LIFE, IN MALACHI 3V16, YHWH CALLS THE BOOK OF REMEMBRANCE, THE SO CALLED OT, FROM GENESIS – MALACHI FROM WHICH THE ENEMY IN EXODUS 17V14-16, TOOK US AWAY FROM KNOWING THIS TRUTH AND LED US TO THE NT. THE NT SHOULD FULFILL THE OT BUT IT CHANGED THE WORDS OF YHWH AND YOUR CREATOR AND FATHER YHWH TEACHES US THAT HE CHANGES NOT IN MALACHI 3V6. DO NOT GET FOOLED BY THEM SAYING THAT THIS IS OLD NO IT IS NOT THIS IS GOING ON RIGHT NOW PEOPLE THE (INTERNATIONAL BANKERS THE ENEMY) WAKE UP, SELAH!!!

    January 15, 2012 at 10:56 am |
    • Mr. Hat

      You lost me at "The Truth"...

      January 15, 2012 at 10:58 am |
    • Bill

      Lost me at "the"

      January 15, 2012 at 12:22 pm |
    • Bizarre

      It seems as if Loranvoss has gotten into the altar wine again. Those holy spirits, eh what?

      January 15, 2012 at 12:30 pm |
    • rzzzll

      First off, as a "christian" you are a heretic from the true path that Judaism offers, has offered 3500 years ago. Second NO ONE knows how the Name is pronounced, let alone use it in the first place. That only diminished the Lord, and 2000 years after the Temple was destroyed, and there were no vowels in early Hebrew. Third, if you are implying Jews with "international bankers" you are guilty of hating the religion and people who follow the true path, you steal our Tanakh, then misinterpret it for your own sick purposes, twist it and use for YOUR own enrichment. International corporations are more of a threat than bankers, or haven't you already noticed? Follow Hashem.

      January 15, 2012 at 9:21 pm |
  17. JohnB

    Exceptionally written article. Inspired me to think. My personal belief is that Jesus was certainly a "man of God," but the years and misintrepretations of his teachings have made him a "God of men." I've always doubted that it was ever his intention to be held in higher esteem than the Father of the universe.

    January 15, 2012 at 8:58 am |
    • Loranvoss

      JohnB, you are right this may have not been intentional but then one must discern for it could have been just that putting Jesus before the Creator YHWH to mislead the flocks from Him and His Hebrew name, YHWH(God). For YHWH tells us in Isaiah 40v18,25 Who will you equal Him to? And He tells us not to do this but we did it anyway, and many wonder why there is so much pain. The Father YHWH in Isaiah 44v22 tells us that He is our only Savior and Redeemer, and in Isaiah 43v13, our YHWH says that man cannot be delivered out of His hands. One more reality check, YHWH hates all religions they are idolatry and vanities and He never condone them. He YHWH is Spiritual and Righteous Strong One, and the pastors popes elders rabbi are misleading the flocks as said by YHWH(God) in Jeremiah 23v1-8, and His Arm is called in vs.8, The (Lord)YHWH Our Righteousness. And it is here today for us those who are Awakening from the darkness of lies and idolatry. The book of life, the so called OT is also called by YHWH the book of remembrance in Malachi 3v16 is from Genesis – Malachi and is the truth about your Creator YHWH. The book of mormon is a fraud and is prophesied by YHWH to Jeremiah as such in Jeremiah 10 as a doctrine of vanities. When I looked us mr. Joseph Smith it says that he claims an angel told him where these plates of gold and silver were and he proclaim them to be the doctrine and covenant the gospel and YHWH knows all and has prophesied him to be a brutish fool with brutish knowledge in Jeremiah 10,as falsness.

      January 15, 2012 at 10:11 am |
    • rzzzll

      LoranVoss – First off, as a "christian" you are a heretic from the true path that Judaism offers, has offered 3500 years ago. Second NO ONE knows how the Name is pronounced, let alone use it in the first place. That only diminished the Lord, and 2000 years after the Temple was destroyed, and there were no vowels in early Hebrew. Third, if you are implying Jews with "international bankers" you are guilty of hating the religion and people who follow the true path, you steal our Tanakh, then misinterpret it for your own sick purposes, twist it and use for YOUR own enrichment. International corporations are more of a threat than bankers, or haven't you already noticed? Follow Hashem.

      January 15, 2012 at 10:12 pm |
    • Sean

      So in essence what you are willing to believe is that Jesus' disciples and those that followed after them were willing to be martyred in torturous sadistic ways like being crucified or sawed into rather than admit they had stretched the truth about Jesus and his resurrection? That seems less plausible to me than that perhaps Jesus was resurrected. And if he was resurrected, then it would seem unbelievable that God would resurrect one who was a heretic and liar. This was the quandary that won Saul over when he encountered the resurrected Christ on the road to Damascus. He was one of many who were so sure of the resurrection of Jesus that they gladly faced martyrdom rather than deny the truth they had been preaching and the risen Lord they served. Especially in the case of Peter and James the brother of Jesus, etc. -who were eyewitnesses to the risen Lord – it seems ludicrous to believe they would carry on a self-perpetuated hoax to those extremes. Just food for thought.

      January 15, 2012 at 10:14 pm |
  18. arcandciel

    In Rev 22:18-19 is a clear warning to those who would add things or remove things from the Word of God the Bible. So, if you think that other books than the Bible are more important than the Bible like for instance a human concocted Book of Mormons, you are in for a big surprise one day!....

    January 15, 2012 at 8:12 am |
    • Larry

      Just when did the bible become the bible? The books were argued over and some kept and some tossed out. Just when was revelations written again? So are you sure that was not also added to keep other from thinking about it? Why has the apocrypha been deleted from the protestant bibles? That is in the catholic bible and so part of the bible that the rest of us has thrown out. Just something to contemplate when spouting words that you have no real meaning of.

      January 15, 2012 at 9:29 am |
    • LMB123

      In the book of Dueteronomy, written thousands of years before the entire New Testament, it also says not to add or take away anything from that book. Obviously it refers to the book of Dueteronomy, otherwise the entire New Testament would be an unauthorized addition. As for the Book of Mormon, it is Another Testament of Jesus Christ. Those who actually read it from cover to cover will easily find that out. Those who don't read it have absolutely no credibility when commenting on it.

      January 15, 2012 at 9:41 am |
    • Loranvoss

      arcandciel, This is not from your Creator YHWH for in Malachi 3v6 YHWH(God) tells us that He changes not, which means do not change His law, His ordinances and judgments but we did and now many are mislead by our pastors popes and elders rabbis as the Father YHWH says in Jeremiah 23v1-8 in Malachi 2 in Ezekiel 20 and YHWH is angered for they have also profaned His name in Ezekiel 36v22,23. This book is truly called the book of remembrance, in short the book of life given to us by YHWH for us to remember Him in Malachi 3v16 and it is the truth from Genesis – Malachi about YHWH(God) and our life for He made us so He would know what is best for us His law without the changes of the NT that takes us away from the truth. YHWH is our only Savior and Redeemer in Isaiah 44v22 is what He teaches us and in Isaiah 43v13, He tells us that no man can be delivered from out of His hands.

      January 15, 2012 at 10:24 am |
    • arcandciel

      Of course in Deuteronomy God said not to add or to remove from His Word as God doesn't change. He would say the same thing about His true word at any epoch thereafter. The problem with your satanic assumption that the Book of Mormons is another testament of Jesus Christ is that it doesn't match with the perfect divine arrangement of the books as explained in the first lessons of the bible course from lcg.org. Furthermore there is practically NOTHING anyway from the original OT and NT that you believe in. And your knowledge of prophecy is below zero. Maybe you invented a new testament because you didn't like the real Bible in the first place.... As another interesting site COGwriter.org has a section that differentiates the beliefs of the mormons and the Living Church of God, you should look at!...

      January 15, 2012 at 1:06 pm |
    • arcandciel

      I should have mentioned COGwriter.com instead of dot org which doensn't work. This is a rather involved and deep site in the sense that nobody needs to know all of this to be a true Christian. But to some evil people who like to argue all the time over the smallest details as an excuse not to leave their fables, here is a place where you can meet your match. I haven't read everything myself but I suggest you do!...

      January 15, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
    • LMB123

      Arcanciel – your description of the Book of Mormon screams "I haven't read it and therefore don't know what I'm talking about". It is a book that brings people who ALREADY believe in the Bible closer to God and our Savior Jesus Christ. Don't tell ME what I believe, I should be telling YOU. Anyway, the Bible is a great book of scripture but it is not perfect otherwise we would all be in the same church. After all it says "One Lord, One Faith and One Baptism". The myriad of different Christian religions is ample evidence that the Bible is not the complete word of God. The Bible is a collection of books, each written by different authors and in many cases decades apart. Our message to the world is that God is not dead and has not stopped speaking to his children (as He always has done – He is the same yesterday, today and forever)

      January 15, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
    • rzzzll

      Your "new testament" is nothing but heresies and jokes. Follow the Tanakh and the way of the Eternal One, blessed is He.

      January 15, 2012 at 10:13 pm |
  19. lastofall

    Sorry, but you are speaking as one that changes the Word of God into a lie, and worships and serves the creature more than the Creator, which defines humanism.

    January 15, 2012 at 2:32 am |
    • Loranvoss

      lastofall, The NT changed the Word of YHWH(God), for He says in Malachi 3v6 that He changes not but over in Acts timothy says all animals are good to eat, yet YHWH said do not eat unclean animals in Deuteronomy 14 and Leviticus 11,12 and YHWH law does not change, Then in Romans peter says the law is wrath and YHWH says in Malachi 4v4 do the law. So these men are changing the Word of the Creator, then again in John 1v18 he says that no man has seen YHWH but in Exodus 24v10, Genesis 18, Isaiah 6v1 these men the prophets did see YHWH and in Ezekiel 1v26. These men are the enemy of the Creator YHWH or they work for the enemy some knowing some unknowingly, told to us by YHWH in Psalms 83, and are in dominion of this world as the International Bankers or illuminati or zionist elders take your pick they are not sane. They are completely destroying mankind with fake living GMOs perversion Greed, oh it was prophesied in Genesis 27 of their descendant Esau the enemy of YHWH in Malachi 1v1-6. Yes, we are in a Spiritual War people.

      January 15, 2012 at 10:47 am |
    • rzzzll

      Loran voss is noting but a heretic and a liar. First off, as a "christian" you are a heretic from the true path that Judaism offers, has offered 3500 years ago. Second NO ONE knows how the Name is pronounced, let alone use it in the first place. That only diminished the Lord, and 2000 years after the Temple was destroyed, and there were no vowels in early Hebrew so do not even use the tetragrammaton. Third, if you are implying Jews with "international bankers" you are guilty of hating the religion and people who follow the true path, you steal our Tanakh, then misinterpret it for your own sick purposes, twist it and use for YOUR own enrichment. International corporations are more of a threat than bankers, or haven't you already noticed? Follow Hashem for he is the way of peace. Not your zombie god.

      January 15, 2012 at 10:15 pm |
  20. Harry D. Rake

    24 For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect. 25 See, I have told you ahead of time.

    January 14, 2012 at 11:11 pm |
    • HellBent

      presenting facts and evidence does not make one a prophet. It does, however, makes those who bury their head in the sand so that they don't have to see said facts and evidence look rather foolish.

      Home Work Assignment: Research circular reasoning. Realize why above post is a waste of bandwidth.

      January 15, 2012 at 2:36 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.