home
RSS
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. momoya

    @Paul

    Your do not understand science or what it says. Life did not come from "nothing." You believers who do not understand science always want to make it sound like magic because that is what you believe. You believe in a god that needs no creator and can utter magic words to make plants and animals from nothing. Science doesn't use magic in the equation–you guys do that. Whether or not science can or cannot show how life began has nothing to do with the existence of some god or other. Just because the bible starts with magic incantations that create the universe and life does not mean that science has to do the same thing–and it doesn't.

    Incredulity is not an argument for a particular god. And even if I accept your premise that the "wow factor" is an argument for a designer, we'd have a long, long, long way to go to get to your particular god. The god of the bible makes stupid mistakes and has the temperament of a petulant two-year old. And that's just the beginning.

    "Stuff is cool" does not mean "my particular god exists."

    February 22, 2012 at 9:06 am |
    • Believer

      Momoya scientists do believe in life coming from things not living. We have no evidence for this, no experiments that have shown that this could possibly happen. God created Matter, Time and all of our scientific laws, therefore he is not restrained by them, in the same way matter is. Also show some Bible verses of God making a mistake, or acting like a child.
      Also as for the wow factor, Paul is not using that to show our God is the right one, he is showing that there is one.

      February 22, 2012 at 10:37 pm |
    • GodPot

      Mistake? Childish? Lets see....

      "The LORD regretted that he had made human beings on the earth, and his heart was deeply troubled. 7 So the LORD said, “I will wipe from the face of the earth the human race I have created—and with them the animals, the birds and the creatures that move along the ground—for I regret that I have made them.” Gen 6:6,7

      I think that covers both of them right there...

      February 22, 2012 at 11:40 pm |
    • Believer

      I do not see the childish in there unless you mean that sending the flood was childish, but I do see the mistake part. A couple of things,
      A. We do not know what they were doing, we do not know the calamaty of the evil they were doing therefore we cannot judge Gods discipline based on a crime that we do not know.
      B. Think about it, God has given these people everything. He created them and gave them countless blessings and they abused every one of them.
      C. Apparently he diddnt entirely regret making his creation, for he spared it with Noah and the ark. He kept his creation alive. He regreted the way that his creation was killing itself. If God did not intervene there is a chance that his creation would have destroyed itself. He regretted the choices that his creation was making, not the creation itself.

      February 22, 2012 at 11:58 pm |
    • GodPot

      It doesn't seem childish to you that he decides to wipe out the birds, animals and creatures because he was mad at humans? Doesn't that sound like a petulant child throwing their art project on the ground and storming off just because one piece was the wrong color or didn't fit?

      February 23, 2012 at 12:03 am |
    • Believer

      God put man in charge of creation he put man in charge of it. When man fell all of creation fell, it wasnt just the one color was off the whole project was a mess. Using your art analogy it would be more like a painting is drawn, then one of the colors leaps off the page and completly scrambles the rest of the painting. It wasnt just man that was fallen, animals were fallen too.

      February 23, 2012 at 12:09 am |
    • GodPot

      What the heII are you talking about, the animals were fallen too? No where in the bible does God pass judgement on animals behavior or any example of an animal sinning. It does say that God wiped millions of animals off the earth with the flood but also says he's so caring he knows when the sparrow has fallen. So basically you have a childish angry God who punishes the animals along with mankind through no fault of their own but he feels really really bad about it...

      February 23, 2012 at 12:31 am |
    • Believer

      Romans 8:21-22 21 that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God.
      22 We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time.
      Im pretty sure that animals are part of this groaning of sin and decay.

      February 23, 2012 at 12:37 am |
    • GodPot

      ""creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God."

      So I take it you believe that your Dog will be with you in Heaven then? But do All Dogs Go To Heaven? Should I prevent my neighbors poodle from h u m ping the fence post for fear he may be risking his soul? If you equate either of those scriptures with "animals sinning" then you are just about crazy enough to believe in pet heaven and heII.

      February 23, 2012 at 12:57 am |
    • Believer

      I never said they had souls, nor did that verse suggest that. Animals were put under the subject of Man who is under God's judgement. Ergo Animals are under Gods judgement along with man, although the two are not the same thing.

      February 23, 2012 at 1:10 am |
    • Juggling Squirrel Jesus

      Well, he's not in charge of the killer rabbits, I can tell you that much. Your god holds no judgement over them. But who would dare to, with those great big pointy teeth they have?

      February 23, 2012 at 1:29 am |
    • Believer

      I like the Monty Python reference, great movie

      February 23, 2012 at 1:33 am |
    • GodPot

      So what meaning do you assign to " liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God." Is not the liberation from decay a reference to being with God in heaven where rust and decay hold no sway? And if it is then why would you be saying animals get to go there too? The idea of sinful animals or that the bible condemns them along with mankind for mans sins is beyond lubricious, its simply insanity. You are not doing your fellow Christians any favors by taking indefensible positions on why God is not a dlck for throwing the animal babies out with the bath water.

      February 23, 2012 at 1:41 am |
    • GodPot

      lubricious...

      ludicrous...

      I guess the first one could fit as well...

      lu·bri·cious/lo͞oˈbriSHəs/
      Adjective: Offensively displaying or intended to arouse s e x ual desire.
      Smooth and slippery with oil or a similar substance.

      February 23, 2012 at 1:44 am |
    • Juggling Squirrel Jesus

      Indeed it is a great movie. It highlights Christian reasoning and logic quite well.

      February 23, 2012 at 2:30 am |
    • Believer

      In Isiah God does mention animals in heave, with the lion and the lamb laying next to each other peacefully. I do not know if these animals came from earth, or will God just create new ones. Contrary to your claims I have never claimed to know everything, that is just something I will find out when I die. I will continue digging into the scripture to see if anything else lends light to the subject, however I have a theory. Since animals were not the ones who caused the sin, yet they felt its consequences and the fact that I believe that God is merciful and just I believe that they do go into heaven. No I did not say that they had souls. Animals are a unique case since they do not have that. However they do know that they are entirely dependant creatures, and it is not their fault that sin entered the world I believe that God will be merciful to them.

      February 23, 2012 at 8:34 am |
    • Fallacy Spotting 101

      Series of posts by Believer incorporate quite a collection of common fallacies, including the the straw man fallacy (repeatedly), the argument from ignorance fallacy, the false analogy fallacy, and multiple instances of the fallacy of selective attention. Phew. We'll just stop there for now.

      http://www.iep.utm.edu/fallacy/#H6

      February 23, 2012 at 10:00 am |
    • Believer

      Fallacy reasoning,
      Argument from ignorance: I do not believe in God simply because he has not been proven to not exist. I believe in him because the complexity of life and the universe leads me to believe there is a designer.
      Argument of false analogy, I do not understand how my analogies are false, if you could explain how that would be great so I can work on it. Constructive criticism is always a good thing.
      As for selective attention, I believe that I have been trying to answer all the questions, if I missed something repost and I will answer to the best of my ability.

      February 23, 2012 at 10:30 am |
    • Believer

      Forgot one, the straw man fallacy. Based on the definition on the article I do not see that happening in my post with godpot. I do not quote him, I answer his arguments. Can you show me one of my apparent many straw man fallacies?

      February 23, 2012 at 10:48 am |
    • GodPot

      "I do not quote him, I answer his arguments." Well, I will admit that you gave answers, but they did not actually "answer" my original position that your own bible shows your God to make mistakes and act like a child. You have tried to defend this by saying that either we don't know how bad things were so we shouldn't judge the harsh punishment (which was not my original point, I never said his fixing of his mistakes was the issue, but that he made a mistake) or that because he is the creator of the universe he can do anything, even regret making humans and decide to throw out the baby birds and other creatures that move along the ground all because of mans sin. Though that only leaves me with another question... What did the fish do to avoid the same fate? Or were they just lucky that the chosen method of destruction was water based?

      February 23, 2012 at 2:59 pm |
    • Believer

      In the flood there was so much chaos that the fish would have died too. I believe that the flood is the cause of most of the fossils, and 95% of fossils are from marine life. With all of the mud and rocks flying around in the chaos the fish would have been caught and buried.
      Also once again with the regret, he was not regreting his creation, he was regretting his creations actions. When parents hear or see that a child has done something wrong, do they not feel regret for the child? They do not feel regret for having the kid, they feel regret for what the child had done. The parent did nothing wrong, it was entirely the child but the parent still feels regret for the child. That is the kind of regret that God felt in that verse.

      February 23, 2012 at 5:45 pm |
    • momoya

      Believer, you claim that "intelligent design" is the best hypothesis for why our universe is so nifty. Fine. The first step in studying a hypothesis is to lay out what conditions would prove the hypothesis wrong. Falsifiability.

      Hypothesis: Water will become solid below 32 degrees and float upon water that is higher than 32 degrees.
      Now we have a falsifiable test: If we cool water to below 32 degrees and it does not become solid and float, my hypothesis is wrong.

      Your hypothesis: The universe was designed because it looks designed to me even though I can't see 95% or so of it due to dark matter and dark energy.

      What is the falsifiable test for this hypothesis?: __________________________________________

      February 23, 2012 at 7:06 pm |
    • momoya

      For Believer: Umm... the flood never happened. Please do some research

      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I225Vcs3X0g&w=640&h=360]

      February 23, 2012 at 7:11 pm |
    • GodPot

      " I believe that the flood is the cause of most of the fossils, and 95% of fossils are from marine life."

      Okay, you believe it, much like there are still people who believe the world is flat in the face of overwhelming evidence. There are NO scientists who would agree with your statement, even the ones that hold out that there was a biblical flood event, because they do not doubt the age differences between fossils so if "the flood caused most of the fossils" that would mean that most of the fossils were made during your 40 day and 40 night period. And yes yes, I know you "believe" that your God can do anything thereby giving him the power to plant false evidence, add varying amounts of radiation to throw off carbon dating, and create light beams over billions of light years in transit and domesticate the Tyrannosaurus Rex so Adam and Eve could plow their fields, but then why even debate this issue if you have made up your mind contrary to all actual solid available evidence?

      February 23, 2012 at 8:24 pm |
    • Believer

      How is God falsifiable? Simple have life start randomly, that eliminates the need for God.
      As for the flood not happening, I watched that video and well here are some responses to it.
      I do not know where the writer of the video got his number of kinds of animals, because I have seen articles putting that article at far less. Also as for his comparing the ark to other ships, the other ships were not about survival and fitting the maximum amount of people they were about comfort. Do you realize how much room you can save if you eliminate everything accept for the basics? Also I do not see why he could not have brought young smaller animals. Animals develop at different rates, and would produce at seperate times.
      Also if the flood did happen, it would have started the tectonic shift which would have formed the mountains. Mt. Everest would have been formed because of the flood, not before it.
      Now as for the food, I am sure that the amounts of food listed in the video were averages. If we take young animals who eat less, and then feed them just enough for survival then there could have been room. Also the animals he listed were the biggest ones which ate the most, all of the rest of the animals ate far less.
      Also as for the magic of God and why he diddnt just stop there hearts, the flood provides a beautiful precursor to baptism. We die in the water, yet life is still preserved.

      February 23, 2012 at 8:26 pm |
    • Believer

      I had sources to go with the above post, but cnn would not let me use them.
      As for the dating methods being true,
      http://nazarenespace.com/forum/topics/the-flaws-of-carbon-dating?xg_source=activity
      http://www.atenizo.org/evolution-c14-kar.htm
      Read these articles, we have plenty of examples of those dating methods not workng.

      February 23, 2012 at 8:36 pm |
    • GodPot

      Okay, lets assume for a second that Noah built his ark and got all the animals and everything else perished, even the fish as you say " With all of the mud and rocks flying around in the chaos the fish would have been caught and buried." My question is, how did Noah save the whales? Was he able to get Capt. Kirk to come back and save them in a time traveling Bird of "Pray"? Or did God just create a bunch of new whales and fish after the flood? Or, even more remarkable, do you believe Noah had two breeding pairs of whales on board his ark? Quite a feat indeed. But what am I thinking, your God can do anything, even give Noah the properties of see-through aluminum apparently...

      "Also as for the magic of God and why he diddnt just stop there hearts, the flood provides a beautiful precursor to baptism. We die in the water, yet life is still preserved."

      The more you speak Believer, the more I realize I am debating an intellectual ant who can only regurgitate the drone information it's been fed. Now you are inferring that God just might have killed everything with a flood then resurrected them after since there wasn't enough room on the ark. So now you are not just hypothesizing your way around actual scripture, you are making up new scripture never even mentioned with new possible miracles never mentioned, all to make what you want to believe be true. Because if it isn't your whole life is a lie and there is no heaven and you should go give an atheist a hug or something...

      February 24, 2012 at 3:53 am |
    • GodPot

      "Read these articles, we have plenty of examples of those dating methods not working." I did and it had me laughing for a good few minutes. Even your own "evidence" against carbon dating still places the majority of fossils found wayyyyyyy beyond any possible biblical time frame.

      Take this for example, "If there was a covering of water around the earth as is alluded to in the Bible, this would have blocked X-Ray and UV Radiation. This would have caused there to not be much C14 in the original atmosphere. This may have meant that a living organism only gave off 4 clicks a minute when it was 0 years old. If we used our scale on the fossil after it died, and it was measuring 2 clicks, we would say it was 17,190 years old, when it was really under 6000 years old." Ok, let's give your serious research team, er, "Dr" Hovind a shot here. Lets say that this dating method was off by almost 12,000 years. Well, what about " the oldest cyanobacteria-like fossils known are nearly 3.5 billion years old, among the oldest fossils currently known." – ucmpberkleyedu. How can you sit there with a straight face and say that because they think some dates might be off some, even as much as 96% as your Dr. Hovind claims, what is 4% of 3.5 billion? Oh, just 140,000,000 years. So even if your confused Kent Hovind is correct, which there is almost no doubt he is not, you still have 140 million years to squeeze into 6000.

      By the way, your Dr. Kent Hovind has no science degrees and "graduated from East Peoria Community High School in East Peoria, Illinois in 1971. From 1972 to 1974, Hovind attended the non-accredited Midwestern Baptist College and received a Bachelor of Religious Education. In 1988 and 1991 respectively, Hovind was awarded a master's degree and doctorate in Christian Education through correspondence from the non-accredited Patriot University in Colorado Springs, Colorado (now Patriot Bible University in Del Norte, Colorado, which no longer offers this program). Having a website called "Dr. Dino" has provoked some academics to look closely at how Hovind presents his education and credentials. Chemistry professor Karen Bartelt has said that it is "very unusual for a person with a Ph.D., even a real one, to list oneself in the phonebook as "Dr Hovind", as Hovind has done. Barbara Forrest, a professor of philosophy, expert on the history of creationism and activist in the creation-evolution controversy, wrote that Hovind's lack of academic training makes it impossible to engage him on a professional level." – Wiki

      February 24, 2012 at 4:13 am |
    • momoya

      @Believer

      You said: "It is testable, If life can start without any outside interveniance then God does not exist"

      My 1st question: How do we perform that test?
      My 2nd question: Why and how does this test prove god does not exist?
      My 3rd question: How does the existence of life prove a god?

      You said: "As of yet we have no evidence of this happening."

      My 1st question: Since you don't know that god jump-started the life you see around you, you have no idea if it happened without "interveniance" (whatever that means) and therefore the life you see disproves god according to your own hypothesis. By what reasoning do you claim that life proves god's existence?
      My 2nd question: Why do you presume the existence of a life-starting god in your hypothesis that tries to answer the question of god's existence? Don't you understand how that's extremely sloppy reasoning?

      Your hypothesis fails completely and doesn't even make basic sense. Again, I ask you, what TESTABLE hypothesis, that does NOT presume god as already proven as interfering in some process or other, can we use to determine god's existence?

      February 24, 2012 at 3:53 pm |
  2. Paul

    @ 1plus1 and momoya
    Let’s look at reality and logic then! And Why I believe.
    Even the Bible warns against blindly believing what others teach. “Anyone inexperienced puts faith in every word, but the shrewd one considers his steps.” Proverbs 14:15 So I accept your comment Momoya.
    Let’s consider very briefly the Origin of Life.
    Correct me if I am wrong, but scientists from what I have read that life started all by itself some how by ‘Big Bang’ or over billions of years on the edge of an ancient tidal pool or deep in the ocean, life developed. In either case, Life came from nothing.
    Those who believe in a God believe that life started with intelligence and design and with a purpose.
    It is interesting to note however that scientists are now speculating that the first cells or at least their major components arrived on earth from outer space. Why? Because, despite their best efforts, scientists have been unable to prove life can spring from non-living molecules. In 2008, professor of Biology Alexandre Meinesz highlights the dilemma they face. He stated that over the last 50 years, “no empirical evidence supports the hypotheses of the spontaneous appearance of life on Earth from nothing but a molecular soup, and no significant advance in scientific knowledge leads in this direction.”
    Researches have learned that for a cell to survive, at least three different types of complex molecules must work together; DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid), RNA (ribonucleic acid), and proteins. So what are the chances of RNA or proteins could form by chance? Robert Shapiro, professor emeritus of chemistry at New York University states that the probability of self-replicating RNA molecule randomly assembling from a pool of chemical building blocks “is so vanishingly small that its happening even once anywhere in the visible universe would count as a piece of exceptional good luck.” Scientific America, June 2007, pp 47, 49-50.
    What about protein molecules? These are made from as few as 50 and as many as several thousand amino acids bound together in a highly specific order. A “simple” functional protein cell contains 200 amino acids. Even in those cells, there are thousands of different types of proteins. The probability that just one protein containing only 100 amino acids could ever randomly form on earth has been calculated to be about one chance in a million billion.
    Here’s the paradox, researcher Hubert P. Yockey says “It is impossible that the origin of life was protein first.” This is because RNA is required to make proteins, yet proteins are involved in the production of RNA.
    So what does the evidence indicate? All scientific evidence to date indicates that life can come only from previously existing life. To believe that even a “simple” living cell arose by chance from non-living chemicals in itself requires a huge leap of faith.
    Solution. What takes greater faith – to believe that millions of intricately coordinated parts of a cell arose by chance or to believe that the cell is the product of an intelligent mind?
    Would you like me to go on? There is much more to this that convinces me of a designer and creator with a purpose. We could have a close look at the workings and design of the DNA a marvel of an engineering feat. One gram of DNA, which when dried would occupy a volume of approximately one cubic centimetre, can store as much information as approximately one trillion CD’s. And you try and tell me there is no designer??

    February 22, 2012 at 1:19 am |
    • GodPot

      Complexity does not equate divinity. To make the claim that because something is too complex for us to understand at the moment means it must have been magically summoned into existence by a genie is at best childishly hopeful and at worse woefully ignorant. Every race of humans since those living in caves and painting on the walls have come to that same conclusion because they to were unsatisfied with not knowing all the answers so they have always invented different names and powers for their various genies but they all amount to the same thing, an attempt to answer the three things we fear most, our past (where did we come from) our present (how best to live now) and our future (what happens when we die). Every religion has invented answers for all three, you came from "X" (enter random Gods name here) X wants you to live like "Y" (enter random set of moral codes) so that some day you can get to "Z" (enter random afterlife/paradise).

      You quote Robert Shapiro who states that the probability of self-replicating RNA molecule randomly assembling from a pool of chemical building blocks “is so vanishingly small that its happening even once anywhere in the visible universe would count as a piece of exceptional good luck.” Well when faced with deciding if it was "exceptional good luck" versus magical genie that didn't come from anywhere either since it's always existed but by the nature of being able to create other complexity must be infinitely complex itself thereby completely unraveling your hypothesis that just because the universe is complex an infinitely more complex God must exist.

      p.s. You better not be counting the hours you spend on the boards on your time card!! For shame Paul, for shame...

      February 22, 2012 at 3:36 am |
    • Lorraine

      Paul, Alright, that's telling them something good so that they can know, and lets not forget about the billions of galaxies that the Creator YHWH has made, it is all so big, and this is why it is hard for one, even those of the most admired intelligence to grasp. It is just unimaginable that so much can be arranged with just the breath of their nostrils. Selah!! For it won't be long that when the Creator YHWH, of His day that is coming, and many will get to see His wonder, and His Magnification to come to light, in Isaiah 40v18-31, and as He tells Job, in Job 40, and 41 of who He is.

      February 22, 2012 at 5:38 pm |
    • GodPot

      " it is all so big" is just about the worst reasoning for a creator I have ever heard. I can't completely grasp the 14 trillion dollars of national debt which is really really big, but I don't jump to the conclusion that it must have been unicorns spending too much on horn polish that got it that way. Again, complexity, or in this case, enormity, does not equate divinity, and anyone who believes it does is just proving how very small their minds are.

      February 22, 2012 at 8:20 pm |
    • Believer

      @Godpot, you're right when you say that unicorns diddnt create the debt, no thinking person would think that. However there was a cause to the debt being this large, humans.

      February 22, 2012 at 10:51 pm |
    • GodPot

      "However there was a cause to the debt being this large, humans." This is exactly my point. No atheist says there is no origin to the universe, they are just saying that the lack of knowledge and understanding about something doesn't give us license to fill in the blanks like some religious mad lib.

      February 22, 2012 at 11:32 pm |
    • Believer

      We know the cause of the debt. There is no need to come up with any explanations beause we know what happened. We do not know the origins, but there is an explanation. The only reason why you feel that saying there was an intelligent designer is filling in the gaps is because you do not believe it. I can do the same, the big bang theory and the idea that life all came out of boiling pool is filling in the gaps because we have no evidence for it. There has been no evidence agains a God, however just the fact of existence is evidence that there is one and until they can show me that life can start without a God I will believe that he exists, and that he maintains our laws of sciences so we can continue existing.

      February 22, 2012 at 11:40 pm |
    • GodPot

      "The only reason why you feel that saying there was an intelligent designer is filling in the gaps is because you do not believe it. I can do the same, the big bang theory and the idea that life all came out of boiling pool is filling in the gaps"

      Here is the difference between a room full of atheist scientists discussing the origins of the universe versus a room full of religious zealots doing the same:

      Atheist 1 "I think the big bang did it"
      A2 "I think it was more likely a dark matter coalescence"
      A3 "I think you both might be right to some degree but it's more probable that a combination of cosmic events are the cause"
      A1 "fair enough, we'll have to continue doing research so that we can revise our theories as new data is available."

      Religious Zealot 1" My God created the universe and you MUST obey him!!"
      R2 "No, MY God created everything and he is YOUR master!"
      R3 "No, my God created everything and you must obey him!!"
      R1 "Fine! I'll prove my God is true! I challenge you to a duel! Here are some guns, and the last zealot standing must be the right one chosen by God. obviously..."

      I'm sorry, but I do not want to be in the latter room, I will take my chances with the rational crowd who is open to new ideas and is willing to make changes to their understanding as new information becomes available. I'll be first in line to sign up with your God as soon as any of you can prove he exists because I'm not so full of myself to believe "I Know" it all, I just doubt that you will ever be able to based on religions track record over the last several thousand years of trying.

      February 22, 2012 at 11:58 pm |
    • Believer

      I am not arguing which religion is right, I am arguing that there is a God. And you are right that second room does not sound fun, and that is not how I operate. I use reason and the idea of intelligent design is a valid argument, just like the other ones are. Also as for the origins of the universe scientifically I have a question. In order for life to start without a God there must have been a scientific law in order to get it started. How did that law get there, why did it show up when it did, and why is it no longer working?

      February 23, 2012 at 12:04 am |
    • GodPot

      "How did that law get there, why did it show up when it did, and why is it no longer working?". Here is an example of a universal law: E = MC2. The law only functions with the addition of mass/matter so we cannot say if the law existed before matter existed but we must accept that it did since once matter was introduced (the method of which is of course still being debated) the law functioned. Why would you believe this had to be some written God law to make it so and could not be the "nature" of matter? And how do you know that it's no longer working? Are you expecting there to be another big bang within your lifetime to prove that the first one happened and released the matter and energy we refer to as our universe? Is that what it will take for Christians to believe it could have been possible? If so I wouldn't hold your breath (though the world would likely be a better place if all the believers did). Same thing if you are expecting to see four armed mutant evolution monkeys popping up all over the place.

      February 23, 2012 at 12:24 am |
    • Believer

      Why do I have to believe that God designed it that way? I dont have to, I believe that it is the most logical conclusion. In fact your conclusion that the law came at the exact same time as matter is exactly what I believe in. No I am not waiting for the next big bang or 4 armed monkeys. I was talking about a law that used to exist that made life come out of nonliving material that suddenly disapeared. It stopped working, it no longer applies. Life does not come out of nonliving things, even in a labratory.

      February 23, 2012 at 12:29 am |
    • GodPot

      "Life does not come out of nonliving things, even in a labratory."

      Again, you are saying that just because we currently have not found the key to taking all the Amino acids and chemicals and making life ourselves that means it can't happen, ever, anywhere, without divine intervention? I simply disagree and feel that just because we don't understand something or that something is a low probability event doesn't mean it can't happen. Your God is just one of the many possible low probability events that could be responsible for our universe. And to say he is any more probable than any other theory is either dishonest or being too lazy to keep searching for solid answers.

      February 23, 2012 at 12:48 am |
    • Believer

      I am still looking for answers, and have you seen me say that science wont find any answers? They havent yet but if they do then I will admit I was wrong. I believe that as of this moment God is the best explanation for 2 reasons.
      1. It explains the origins in a neat way, it says how they got started and why there is the appearance of a designer.
      2. It gives us objectivity. It is the best explanation for objective things such as justice and morals. You could say that they are subjective, but then you couldnt say that obviously the God in the Bible is unjust because justice is just an opinion.

      February 23, 2012 at 12:59 am |
    • GodPot

      "have you seen me say that science wont find any answers?"

      " Life does not come out of nonliving things, even in a labratory."

      "God created Matter, Time and all of our scientific laws, therefore he is not restrained by them"

      So in my corner we have the self acknowledged fallible scientists who must abide by the laws of time and space since we have no evidence that anything can or does exist outside of our known universe going up against the "King of the Ring!" The Macho Maker" The Crunching Creator!" The "Alpha to your Omegonna-go-cry!" Alright fighters, you know the rules, Scientists, keep it clean, abide by all known universal laws, and you, God, um, er, you can do whatever you want, no holds barred, heII, you can just pop back in time and unmake the scientists ancestors if you want! There is no way they can win!!" Alright, Begin!!"

      The scientists walk to the center of the ring and wait...and wait... and wait... and wait...

      "So how long do we have to wait for your God to show up before you declare us the winners by default?"

      Announcer "Well, seeing as your opponent is not bound by the laws of time, it could be forever, or it could have been just a minute ago and you must have missed him!! But we won't declare a winner till you have been knocked out!!"

      "That hardly seems fair... were going back to bed....." "snore..."

      February 23, 2012 at 1:29 am |
    • Believer

      How long do we have to wait for science to come up with the answers? As of right now both sides are unproven so that analogy of waiting for God doesnt work. You get mad at me for being impatient with science, and yet you say God must show himself immediatly? If I am right, then he has revealed himself already through Jesus Christ. He has shown himself in creating us. I see his work in my life all the time.

      February 23, 2012 at 1:38 am |
    • GodPot

      "You get mad at me for being impatient with science, and yet you say God must show himself immediatly? If I am right, then he has revealed himself already through Jesus Christ."

      Considering that the scientists don't say we must know NOW and we continue searching while the Christians say they do know NOW so why shouldn't they be able to produce something a little more solid than a 2000 year old fairy tale of some guys who met God or maybe one of them was God or maybe he was just the son of God, but apparently if he was God or God's son he was unable to leave anything more substantial than the writings of some of his followers or his followers followers a few decades after the facts. Christians claim the absence of proof is merely a test of faith. A scientist would say the absence of any proof means either the proof doesn't exist or we just haven't found it yet so why stop searching in favor of "testing faith".

      February 23, 2012 at 1:53 am |
    • Believer

      By all means keep looking, I encourage it. My only point in this entire argument is that as of right now an intelligent desiger is the best explanation. Keep looking for other explanations. Could they be able to create life in a labratory? Yes they could, however personally I would be shocked if they did. I do not believe it will happen, however if it does I would agree completly that life could have started by itself. Actually now that I think of it, if a human had to design the experiment that makes it work isnt he the intelligent designer that made that life?

      February 23, 2012 at 8:42 am |
    • GodPot

      " Actually now that I think of it, if a human had to design the experiment that makes it work isnt he the intelligent designer that made that life?" Yes, for the life they create in the lab they would be the creator, however this is merely an attempt to prove that with the right sequence of events creating life from non-living matter could be possible, we just don't have the time to wait around for another low probability event to occur to prove it.

      February 23, 2012 at 9:44 am |
    • jimtanker

      No Believer, the answer that “god did it” is a non-answer. It is the classic example of an argument from ignorance. It is better to say that you don’t know the answer and then go looking for that answer than to just say, “god did it.”

      February 23, 2012 at 9:47 am |
    • Believer

      Alright so the scientist only shows that sequences are available to make it work. However we had to manipulate those sequences. Also you fail to address the question, how is it logical to think that something as simple as a pencil has a designer but something as complex as a cell or DNA does have one?

      February 23, 2012 at 10:42 am |
    • GodPot

      "you fail to address the question, how is it logical to think that something as simple as a pencil has a designer but something as complex as a cell or DNA does have one?"

      The first pencil's were likely the burnt ends of sticks used to write on cave walls. By your logic, if a pencil is too complex to happen then the stick was to complex to have grown and the fire is to complex to have ignited and the charcoal is to complex to break apart and leave dark marks on the complex rock walls. I say that the pencil you show as proof of design is merely evolution at work creating order out of nature through need. There is no difference between even a complex engineering pencil made by man to fulfil a need and the well worn stone of the right size chosen by the Capuchin Monkey for the job of cracking palm nuts.

      The Universe, nature, all we know from our tiny little perch floating around like a grain of sand in the surf trying desparately to have purpose other than being a small part of a much bigger picture. And to think that we, from our miniscule position, could believe we not only know why the beach exists and who put it there and who we should be thankful to for our "spot" on the beach, but also that this beach isn't good enough for us because this is only a temporary storage unit for the much bigger, much grander Heaven we have been promised? How unbelievably arrogant.

      February 23, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
    • Believer

      I was using the watchmaker approach. If I am walking down the street and see the yellow pencil with an eraser on it and say, well this pencil just got here entirely by acts of nature, nobody interfered and nobody made it then I would be called illogical, and not too bright at all. It obviously had a designer, and so do all the laws that you used for your example of the burnt stick. You never showed how it is illogical to think that there was an intelligent design who put all of the laws in place.
      As for the arrogance, I can understand where you get that idea. However is it arrogant to say that since God created everything, then it is all his? Is it arrogant to say that nothing is actually ours? Is it arrogant to say that we are entirely dependant on him? Is it arrogant for a child to say that their parent loves them? For if God did create us then we are his children, and it is logical to think that he in fact would do anything for us.

      February 23, 2012 at 5:56 pm |
    • momoya

      Believer, you would know that a pencil was designed because you know about pencils. Lot's of 'em. If it were a stick with a charred end, you'd know that that wasn't designed.

      Do you know of any non-designed universes around that we can compare our universe to in order to see the difference between a designed universe and a non-designed universe?

      February 23, 2012 at 8:00 pm |
    • GodPot

      "well this pencil just got here entirely by acts of nature" Why would that be an illogical statement? That yellow pencil had a very long road to get where it is, all acts of nature, from the tool using creatures to man writing on cave walls, it was nature presenting a need, i.e need to crack open this nut, need to communicate to the other hunters what type of animal I saw today that we should go hunt to the north. So out of a need an evolved creature develops a tool, that tool is improved upon over time and changed as needs change, and there it is, the yellow pencil lying on the road. It's just that your narrow definition of "nature" means that you don't accept adaptation and progress as "life finding a way" much like water will follow the path of least resistance which often creates amazing patterns and designs, you assign all patterns you see to being "the hand of God" so you are unable to see adaptation without your God directing it, which only proves you are unable to think outside your box.

      February 23, 2012 at 8:36 pm |
    • Believer

      So you agree that it all starts with an evolved creature developed a tool. Somebody with a mind still developed it, it was not a mindless process. Isnt that what I am arguing? A mind developed the world? My point is it took human intervention, thinking intervention for the pencil to have become the way it is. Yet according to you no such thought was needed for the world to start developing, it took no thought for cells to exist, it took no thought for life to begin, it was a random event. You can believe that if you want too, however until there is evidence of this actually happening I find it extremly unlikely.

      February 23, 2012 at 8:44 pm |
    • GodPot

      "My point is it took human intervention, thinking intervention for the pencil to have become the way it is." Really? You still cannot see my point? How thick headed are you? You are saying that because a pencil combines some wood and graphite that means it must have come from a designer, i'm saying that micro evolution and epigenetics as opposed to most creationists concept of evolution which is macro evolution, i.e. growing an extra limb (macro) vs green or blue eyes (micro), can, given enough time and combinations of materials and environment, create the first single celled organisms that then, through the exact same process, evolving to adapt to it's environment and being changed by it's environment, created a need where these organisms began picking up the burnt stick of wood and charcoal, which then later through some physical and social evolution was turned into wood and graphite.

      So here are the creationists two biggest misconceptions: 1. They DO NOT understand the difference between scientific theory & philosophical theory.

      "A scientific theory is a deductive theory, in that its content is based on some formal system of logic and on basic axioms. In a deductive theory, any sentence which is a logical consequence of one or more of the axioms is also a sentence of that theory." – wiki

      "Philosophical theories are those whose subject matter consists not in empirical data, but rather in ideas are in the realm of philosophical theories and are contrasted with scientific theories. At least some of the elementary theorems of a philosophical theory are statements whose truth cannot necessarily be scientifically tested through empirical observation." – wiki

      2. They DO NOT understand the difference between macro and micro evolution or even know what the word epigenetics means.

      If you can understand these concepts you have a much better chance at making anything close to a valid argument.

      February 24, 2012 at 12:10 pm |
    • GodPot

      To be fair, I will let you know what the evolutionists two biggest problems are.

      We do not KNOW the exact origins of:
      1. Bang
      2. Spark

      We can examine the big bang from the radiation footprint it has left, but we have not yet found any way to verify the cause.
      We can examine the evolution of life on this planet and have mountains of evidence to support the fact that life does find a way through adaptation and micro changes, but we have not yet found the method by which the "spark" of life took seed.

      Can you not understand that just because we admit that we do not know something does not give you and your religious ilk the power to lay claim to those origins with absolutely NO proof other than to say "See, this is really complex so it must have been "my God" which then gives me the rights and privilages to stomp all over anyone and anything we please, we are "God's People" after all.

      Keep telling yourself that what George Castanza said was true, "It's not a lie...If you believe it..."

      February 24, 2012 at 12:45 pm |
  3. Lorraine

    Believer, tell me how do you get that jesus was in the times of the writings of the old testament? The first five books are from Moses, and jesus was not there then that was Joshua, nor in the time of Moses. Not according to the Nt, jesus was born after the times of Moses. But I do agree that the old testament does tell the truth of the Heavenly Creator YHWH, and of His Spirituality, the King. This is no religion. All religions are pagan and idolatry, YHWH has never condoned any of them. First christians say that jesus is Emmanuel, then he is YHWH the Creator, then jesus is Michael the angel, next he is the son of YHWH, athen many of the christians say jesus is Joshua, so which one is it? For the name Joshua means the helper of YHWH, so if this is true then why would christians praise the helper or servant of the most High YHWH, and not praise the Creator YHWH? He who created it all by Himself in Isaiah 44v24-26. YHWH is one way straight, and narrow, and no shades of grey, only the truth, and many cannot handle the truth, and is why we have all of these religions, and twists and turns, with YHWH to do whatever we want to with our lives and this is not the way of our Creator YHWH, His way is righteousness and peace, has anyone seen any of these lately? No, not even with all religions there is no peace today, only the controlling and dividing of the masses.

    February 21, 2012 at 9:24 pm |
    • Paul

      Hi Lorraine, I hope you don’t mind but I may be able to clarify a couple of points for you.
      Jesus said while on earth, that he did existed before his birth on earth John 8:56 – 58. Even John the Baptist recognised this, John 1:30, and John was six months older than Jesus. In saying this Lorrainne I am in no way saying that Jesus is YHWH (Hebrew) or ‘Jehovah’ (English) the Creator. But just as Jesus said he is his Son and was identified as such by Jehovah when he spoke from heaven at Jesus baptism Luke 3:21-22. “You are my Son, the beloved; I have approved you.” So Jesus’ life was transferred to the womb of Mary and was born a human. To later give his life as a Ransom for us, by dying faithful and returning to his Father in the Heavens by Resurrection.

      February 21, 2012 at 11:18 pm |
    • Paul

      Who is Michael the archangel?
      First of all the name Michael appears five times in the Bible and referred to as “one of the chief princes,” “the great prince who was in charge of your [Daniel’s] people,” and as “the archangel.” See Daniel 10:13; 12:1; Jude 9. The name Michael actually means “Who is like God?” So this Michael takes the lead in the heavens upholding Jehovah’s sovereignty and destroying God’s enemies, pre-Christian times.
      Interestingly the expression “archangel’ is never found in plural in the scriptures, implying that there is actually only one archangel.
      At 1 Thessalonians 4:16 when Jesus Christ commands the resurrection to begin is described as “the archangel’s call,” and Jude 9 says that the archangel is Michael. Would it be appropriate to Liken Jesus’ commanding call to that of someone lesser in authority? Reasonably, then, the archangel Michael is Jesus Christ.
      Rev 12:7-12 refers to Michael and his angels warring against Satan and his angels and would hurl them out of heaven. Jesus is later depicted as leading the armies of heaven in war against the nations Rev 19:11-16. So it seems clear that the Son of God was known as Michael before he came to earth and is also know by that name since his return to heaven where he resides as the glorified spirit Son of God.

      February 21, 2012 at 11:40 pm |
    • Believer

      Hi Lorraine, sorry if I confused you with my post. What I meant was that the people who selected the books in Nicea, selected the old testament books that were already considered scripture in Jesus day. The priests at the time considered our Old Testament as scripture, and that is why we selected those books. The New testament is a different story, those books were selected because they were written in the lifespan of the apostles.

      February 22, 2012 at 10:18 pm |
  4. Lorraine

    1plus1, the evidence is within the occurrences in this world, such as in the prophecy Jeremiah 50v37, men will become as women, this is truly happening everyday now in the daughter of Babylon, the US, and all over this world. And in Isaiah 47v14,15, about the companies that we were raised up with in our youth will turn against us, and leave us. For many of them as the industries have left the US today, and jobs, and the commercialism is gone out of her, again of the daughter of Babylon, the US. Many jobs and companies have gone to other countries such as China a veto power nation, and others as well. Leaving the US dry of business, and or jobs as prophesied it would in the book of Isaiah 47,and of the curse put upon the people for their iniquities against the Heavenly Creator YHWH, in Jeremiah 50 from not doing the law that was given to us in Exodus 20, Leviticus 23 and the passover in Exodus 12, which is our life to live by, and our righteousness, and peace as told to us in Deut. 32v45-47.

    February 21, 2012 at 8:32 pm |
  5. sk

    [Quran 82:7] The One who created you, designed you, and perfected you.
    [Quran 3:6] He is the One who shapes you in the wombs as He wills. There is no other god besides Him; the Almighty, Most Wise.
    [Quran 67:2] The One who created death and life for the purpose of distinguishing those among you who would do better.* He is the Almighty, the Forgiving.

    [Quran 6:73] He is the One who created the heavens and the earth, truthfully. Whenever He says, "Be," it is. His word is the absolute truth. All sovereignty belongs to Him the day the horn is blown. Knower of all secrets and declarations, He is the Most Wise, the Cognizant.
    [Quran 40:13] He is the One who continuously shows you His proofs, and sends down to you from the sky provisions. Only those who totally submit will be able to take heed.
    [Quran 2:22] The One who made the earth habitable for you, and the sky a structure. He sends down from the sky water, to produce all kinds of fruits for your sustenance. You shall not set up idols to rival God, now that you know.

    [Quran 6:95] God is the One who causes the grains and the seeds to crack and germinate. He produces the living from the dead, and the dead from the living. Such is God; how could you deviate!

    [Quran 6:96] At the crack of dawn, He causes the morning to emerge. He made the night still, and He rendered the sun and the moon to serve as calculation devices. Such is the design of the Almighty, the Omniscient.

    [Quran 6:97] And He is the One who made the stars to guide you during the darkness, on land and on sea. We thus clarify the revelations for people who know.

    Quran 43:12] He is the One who created all kinds, in pairs (male and female), and He created for you ships and livestock to ride.

    [Quran 36:36] Glory be to the One who created all kinds of plants from the earth, as well as themselves, and other creations that they do not even know.

    February 18, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
    • 1plus1

      There is no evidence to suggest what you've posted is true. But there is evidence to explain these things using science.

      I can't make it any clearer. Either you accept reality as we can see and measure it, or you reject reality and replace that reality with your own fantasy. I personally cannot continue to live a fantasy.

      February 21, 2012 at 9:12 am |
  6. Nii Croffie

    Godpot u are so lucky to be able to speak about God the way u do. Why is it that u sound like u will die if u had incontrovertible proof of God's existence. U want to judge whether evidence is good enough for u too don't u? U r just selfish thats all. Love ur neighbor as urself!

    February 17, 2012 at 7:14 pm |
  7. sounds reasonable to me

    It's comical reading these posts. You all realize of course that your religious beliefs are a product of your geographic upbringing. 99.9% of you would shun Christianity if you were born in a Muslim country. Or a Buddist country. Or China. Word of mouth fables spread out over dozens of generations are just that. Fables. If I have to kill my neighbor for working on Saturday or beat my slave for disobedience then I don't really need your 'God'. He is the root of all evil as evidenced by the justification of wars, killing, and torture. If you all truly believe what the bible says and is the word of God then stop picking and choosing what you want to practice and believe and get yourselves some slaves, beat your wives, kill your children, and murder your neighbor. God bless you all...NOT

    February 16, 2012 at 11:29 am |
    • 1st

      Those like you FEAR WHAT THEY DON'T UNDERSTAND & HATE WHAT THEY CAN'T CONQUER. IT'S WAY MORE TO THE BOOK, MAINLY THOSE WHO'LL BE AS STIFF NECKED AS THEIR FATHER'S.

      February 17, 2012 at 1:02 pm |
    • GodPot

      "Those like you FEAR WHAT THEY DON'T UNDERSTAND & HATE WHAT THEY CAN'T CONQUER."

      Those like us FEAR what we do understand. We understand that billions of religious zealots around the world would happily press the nuke buttons to destroy us all if their "God" asked them to, even though their "God" has never said anything to anyone since it's always come through some nut job telling people God spoke to them and that everyone must follow them and do what they tell you, from Moses to Joseph Smith. And along the way the faithful have willingly and shamefully covered their hands in the blood of the innocent. And all because they were either so gullible as to believe the evil humans that had no problem lying to get what they want and claimed divine inspiration were real, or they greedily wanted the "rewards" that were being offered for their servitde. Either way it's disgusting and a period of humanity we will likely look back on like we do our cave dwelling ancestors, as a period of true ignorance and destruction all brought to you by "faith" but also another period of social evolution where we had to learn to do away with the childlike fearful thoughts that whatever we can't see out there in the dark must have nasty teeth and claws and be out to get us.

      February 17, 2012 at 2:47 pm |
    • Lorraine

      sounds reasonable to me, the funny thing about what you are saying is that many today do beat their wives, there is still much slavery going on today especially in the line of those who are in poverty, they do have the jobs of servitude, and are not being paid well enough for the work known as (modern day slavery). And there is harsh slavery actually in some countries today. Last, there is much killing of neighbors today, so as it is prophesied in the book of remembrance that it would be of the pestilence, sufferrings, and violence in the so called OT is much of what you ridicule about that is truly happening all around the world to us daily. Ironic isn't it?

      February 21, 2012 at 7:56 pm |
    • Paul

      I enjoyed your comments Lorraine.
      Yes there is one thing that escapes their notice as Peter said in 2 Pet 3:1-7. God has acted before and as promised will act again.
      It is sad though that many so-called Christians defame the very name of Christianity by supporting war (not loving their brothers or neighbours), but of course Jesus said that would happen. But true Christians would be identified by the “love they had amongst themselves”. John 13:34, 35.
      According to Matt 24:14 true Christians would be preaching the “good news of Gods Kingdom”. Which Christian religion is doing that today? Probably the greatest expression of love to their neighbour is to help them to salvation.
      And according to the Lords prayer Matt 6:9, True Christains would be making God’s Name known and Sanctified like Jesus did.
      Who today carry out all these three things? Have love, are known as preachers and carry the name of God, ‘Jehovah’ on high? There is only one I know and that is ‘Jehovah’s Witnesses”.

      February 21, 2012 at 10:51 pm |
  8. Antoine Flemming

    Well, you, sir, are not a Christian. So why would a non-Christian want to get anything from the Bible anyway? Oh, and I say you're not a Christian because you discount everything about Jesus that actually makes Him Jesus. You discount the miracles, you discount the ascension, so you probably also discount the part where He rises from the dead too. You probably discount the part where He is God. So, why should you be talking like you are a Christian, like you actually read the Bible, like you actually believe the Bible, when you don't? It would have been better if you had just come out and said, "I don't believe the Bible, and I think it's just a bunch of made up crap." Because that's what you did. You took away everything that makes the Bible the Bible. Really, you shouldn't even be blogging in Religion. Because you're an atheist. By your words and statements, you're an atheist. I'd rather you be honest and just admit that instead of leading a false pretense of knowing the "true meaning" of the Bible.

    February 16, 2012 at 10:29 am |
    • joe

      Everything you believe and know is wrong.

      February 16, 2012 at 11:19 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      joe how do u know someone's beliefs r wrong. If u want to know about Christianity and the mystical why don't u read and actually practise the Bible rather than run ur mouth. Standing outside anything can be said but if u test seriously u will be enlightened.

      February 17, 2012 at 7:04 pm |
    • ????

      Read your bible with an open and objective mind. Then read, THE AGE OF REASON, written by Thomas Paine with an open and objective mind. How about all those planets standing still, so Joshua could murder more people? Made the day longer you know. How about the, upright, walking, talking snake having a tet-a-tet with Eve. I could go on and on, but maybe you get the picture. No, on second thought, you won't.

      February 20, 2012 at 7:35 pm |
    • Antoine Flemming

      ????, you tell us to read the AGE OF REASON with an open mind, yet I bet you won't read the Bible... ever. It's funny because, we Christians, just like you atheists, grow up learning about all things atheist in school. So it's not like we don't know what you believe. But you pretend to know all about Christianity when you have never read the Bible. You don't know what Christ preached. You don't know what He called Christians to do. By the way, He did NOT command Christians to go out and kill. But, of course, you wouldn't know that. Anyone who goes out and kills in the name of Christ is NOT a true Christian. But see, because all you have seen is the violence committed in the name of Christ, you assume that that's what the Bible commands us to do. Christians were NEVER commanded to do any of those things. Christians are commanded to love their enemies. To do good to those who wrong them. To pray for their enemies. THAT is Christianity, but of course, you didn't know that, because you've never actually read the Bible. For all you people criticizing Christianity. Why don't you actually READ the New Testament before making false claims about it. But, once again, of course none of you will, because it will destroy your argument against Christianity.

      February 20, 2012 at 11:13 pm |
    • Paul

      Hi Antoine,
      I followed along what you were saying and agreed with your reasoning, until you mention that Jesus is God. What I read in the Bible it says Jesus is Gods Son. Could you clarify that for me please?
      Apart from that I agree. The guy who wrote this article is an atheist al right. Talks a load of rubbish. Mind you Jesus and his apostles did say that these sort of guys would be around in the last days, subverting others faith and speaking twisted things. So I enjoyed your comment apart from the other point if you could clarify.
      Cheers
      PJ

      February 20, 2012 at 11:16 pm |
    • GodPot

      " It's funny because, we Christians, just like you atheists, grow up learning about all things atheist in school. So it's not like we don't know what you believe." You do realize that very few atheists are "born" into atheist homes and grow up atheist right? The large majority have been born into Christian homes and read their bibles, and that often is the problem, they read their bibles.
      Their parents and friends and relatives all happily accept the salvation the Church sells without digging to deep but now and again you get the child asking the tough questions and reading their bible more and more to see if they can find the answers that their pastor or priest always seem to reply "Well, God is a Mystery" or "God works in mysterious ways". And when those answers are not enough, and neither are the "You just have to have faith" hog wash, a real miracle happens, the birth of an atheist into the new world of accepting that we don't know everything that's happened or going to happen, that the origins of the universe don't fit in a convenient pocket sized book. The future is what we make of it, not some preordained divine retribution for what man has done to himself, that is punishment enough, and the sooner more people grow up and leave behind the childlike mind of a theist the better off the world will be.

      February 21, 2012 at 10:49 am |
  9. Paul

    Mr Spong said; First, people assume the Bible accurately reflects history. That is absolutely not so, and every biblical scholar recognizes it.
    I have never heard so much rubbish Mr Spong. Not every scholar accepts your reasoning. You are disagreeing with the Apostle Paul who said "all scripture is inspired of God." as such he can surely have recorded accurately any event of historical value to his word. You are actually calling God a liar. Your a brave man. Satan also called into question God's right to rule and we know what's waiting for him.

    February 15, 2012 at 1:11 am |
  10. Paul

    @Yo
    You say you believe the Bible is God’s Word and yet you disagree with the flood as recorded in Genesis. You make no sense with this comment?
    The flood of Noahs Days is not only recorded in the Bible but also most civilisations speak of this in their legends. Leading support to the FACT of what the Bible says is true. By the way not all humans were drowned as Noah his wife and three sons and their wives survived. Thanks to his faithfulness we are here and can talk about it. God determined that mankind had got so corrupt, violent and depraved that he had to step in. Jesus also believed in the flood account and said that “just as the days of Noah were, so the presence of the son of man.” Indicating that in the time of the end, which we are facing people would be just like in Noah’s day. If you have a look out your front door and on TV, internet and so on you will see he was exactly right.
    This was an excellent response to wickedness from God’s point of view, or are you going to attempt to judge our creator and tell him what is right and wrong? Brave man!! For the sack of the good and righteous God will act again as he has done in the past. He does not follow the PC of this world, remember we are the tenants and at anytime the owner as a right to evict the tenants if they abuse his property. That my friend is fair and reasonable. Not that he sneaks in one night and evicts people as he has been warning the human race for sometime now. Accept his standards or else. I don’t have a problem with that. I rent a home and know the rules and if I break them I know the results.

    February 15, 2012 at 12:45 am |
  11. momoya

    @Believer

    You are blinded by your faith. The problem is that right now, in your "heart of hearts" you believe this blindness to be a good thing. You are clinging. It's understandable, yet it is stopping you from earnest consideration of the opposite viewpoint. You have to be willing to be brutally honest with yourself, and that's tough for any faithful christian. If somebody was to pay you 10 million dollars for your best evidence that the bible and its god were wrong, you'd be able to do an astounding job. Who knows whether you would have the courage to follow your own logical reasoning, though.

    Understanding your position ( I was in it for a darn long time) it makes sense for you to focus your collection of evidence on those converts and "evidences" that prove you are in the right spirit. You don't even realize how much your confirmation bias is skewing your attention. If you ever drop your belief, you will be amazed at how much evidence you ignored and the manner in which you rationalized away your doubts. Are you aware of the stories of some christians who have become Muslim and find immense joy and peace in that new religion and the koran? They are out there, for sure, you just haven't read their stories or sought them out. it's the same thing you do with scripture; it's habit.

    Science doesn't claim to be perfect and infallible. The very nature of science DEMANDS that it change and adapt whenever new data becomes available. Do you see the difference? Science rewrites its statements. We don't keep claiming that Darwin's errors were correct if only you know how to interpret the correct portions in a non literal way. We say that Darwin missed it on that point, and we correct the theory. If you are going to claim that the bible needs correction just as we correct wrong points of scientific theory, then you need to show how the bible itself explains how to carry out that process in a consistent and reliable manner. - And that, you can't do. You guys are left scrambling to show how if you take a sideways look at this scripture, and fold it into that implied doctrine from another book, and then take half a scripture from the Psalms you can sorta make it sound like something that can be believed along with current knowledge on the subject. It's pretty funny, actually.

    The ideas in the bible are the result of ruling kings, priests, and armies. Paul's beliefs dominate the NT, and he was demonstrably elite. Constantine put his huge stamp on the religion, so it really doesn't matter that a few of the people pushing ink were somewhat poor, but they contained the elite art of writing. It doesn't really matter because the bible does not show grace, it shows myths and culture and various different god beliefs all rolled up into one semi-coherent overarching philosophy. Your god doesn't exist because there's no consistent version of him presented. His desires, emotions, and behavior are all over the place because he's different gods in different places according to the myth being borrowed and altered at that time by that culture. Faith and opinion make the god, but they don't make him true. The physical artifact of the bible shows an inconsistent idea of god, and that means that god is either an evil trickster who looks different to different believers in different cultures and eras, or--they're all different representations of the idea of god by different myths. I don't believe that god would be an evil trickster or do stupid things like sacrificing himself to himself in order to exploit a loophole in the "perfect" plan that he made himself just to keep people from a torture pit that he made himself. It's a stupid idea, clearly the result of mishmashed myths.

    February 14, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
    • fred

      Momoya
      “If somebody was to pay you 10 million dollars for your best evidence that the bible and its god were wrong, you'd be able to do an astounding job.”
      =>Sorry a bribe would not change anything. What cannot be disproved cannot.
      “You don't even realize how much your confirmation bias is skewing your attention”
      =>back at you, same aplys in both directions
      “If you ever drop your belief, you will be amazed at how much evidence you ignored and the manner in which you rationalized away your doubts.”
      =>I agree which is why so many atheists converted to Christianity.
      “ Are you aware of the stories of some christians who have become Muslim and find immense joy and peace in that new religion and the koran?”
      =>the bible warns about this and other false teachers. Those Christians had a false faith to begin with and could not withstand the apple offered by these serpents.
      They are out there, for sure, you just haven't read their stories or sought them out. it's the same thing you do with scripture; it's habit.
      “If you are going to claim that the bible needs correction”
      =>This is the problem with the Catholics, LDS, etc. they have added to the truth of scripture now they find themselves ducking for cover. The Bible (Law, Scripture) as referred by Jesus when he said “it is so written” has not changed since it was written. Certainly there have been many translations but the core doctrine remains intact.
      “The ideas in the bible are the result of ruling kings, priests, and armies. Paul's beliefs dominate the NT, and he was demonstrably elite. Constantine put his huge stamp on the religion”
      =>Constantine was not even born until AD 272 which is about 220 years after Pauls confirmed letters and the church firmly established.
      “bible does not show grace, it shows myths and culture and various different god beliefs all rolled up into one semi-coherent overarching philosophy.”
      =>read it again and you will note the stark contrast between the man made gods reflected in the history of the Bible and the Living God which was not made in mans image.
      “Your god doesn't exist because there's no consistent version of him presented.”
      =>nonsense, God is the same from beginning to end. You are confusing with the continual revelation of God to His chosen people over time. Early man could not grasp the spiritual truth revealed by Christ thus God was seen in the light of the pillar of smoke and carried in an ark. As mans intellectual comprehension grew God revealed deeper attributes. In the Old Testament it was the physical blood of the lamb and in the New Testament it was Jesus the lamb of God. Since that time we have the Holy Spirit indwell in the hearts of believers that reveals all truth. Same God, same story same beginning and the same ending.
      “myth being borrowed and altered at that time by that culture.”
      =>God always was which puts God before all the man made gods and myths you claim. Even Abraham ran across cultures with different man made gods. To the unbiased mind you find that at a minimum you cannot prove which thought came first that myths drew their material from.
      “Faith and opinion make the god, but they don't make him true.”
      =>got it backwards, In the beginning was the word and the word was with God and in Him was the light of man. Truth does not change it is always true. Scientific laws and lies change over time but the truth does not.
      “I don't believe that god would be an evil trickster or do stupid things like sacrificing himself to himself in order to exploit a loophole in the "perfect" plan”
      =>I would love to hear your plan on how man with free will could remove the knowledge of good and evil from his being so that perfect unity could result.

      February 14, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
    • momoya

      @Fred

      You're wrong and boring in rather obvious ways.

      February 14, 2012 at 4:15 pm |
    • fred

      momoya
      Using the same evidence as you do we are equally right or wong. Boring? Well given you relesh the few verses in the Bible where death and hell raise the hair on your neck I would think that anything short of Satan himself would be boring.

      February 14, 2012 at 6:35 pm |
    • fred

      momoya
      I guess I could wait an eternity for you to explain how the book of momoya will produce a being that has the soul necessary to walk in the Garden with God once again. My assumption since you went on the defensive is that you realize you do not have a better plan to remove the knowledge of good and evil from man without removing his free will.
      Given your current world view, that man like a dog or a fish simply exists without purpose other than to survive and reproduce, there is no need for God. Common sense would then say those who need God have a purpose greater than themselves which is more than simply survival and reproduction. Yet, you choose a godless existence knowing full well it limits purpose and expression to that of an animal. God put His image in man which is higher than animals. When your remove God from the equation all that is left is the animal in man. This is what you reject when you reject God. You reject a higher calling, you reject a holy life and you reject that which is greater than self.

      February 14, 2012 at 6:58 pm |
    • momoya

      @fred

      Oh, quit your whining; I'll let you know when you say something remotely interesting or relevant.

      Here, I'll throw you a bone:
      Maybe you could get some hints from "Believer" on how to add something that furthers the conversation instead of just personal, stupid dogma that only makes your position look ridiculous. He's incorrect, but at least he knows how to argue with topics germane to the discussion underway.

      Your welcome - mom ❤

      February 14, 2012 at 9:07 pm |
    • Paul

      I would like to point out that the Bible does NOT change, it’s peoples view that changes. The standards and principles found in the Bible are everlasting. It is consistent and reliable. For example at a time when most people thought the earth was on a turtles back swimming through the cosmic sea the Bible said the earth was hanging on nothing. Accurate and true scientifically.

      February 14, 2012 at 11:33 pm |
    • Paul

      @momoya
      It is interesting that when you can't come up with answers you resort to name calling. How about showing some maturity and listen to what others say. You only make yourself look a fool. You raise some good questions and if you listen you may actually hear the answers.

      February 15, 2012 at 12:00 am |
    • momoya

      @Paul

      I agree that I am interesting, but I don't know what you are expecting me to "answer." The atheist position is one of honesty; we say that we don't know. Believers like you and fred claim to know the answers, but all you have is your unprovable belief and dogma. It's not my job to come up with "answers" why I should believe like you do; it's your job to come up with such "answers" that I can think about and figure out if there is any reason why I should believe that they are the RIGHT answers and not just unprovable statements of faith.

      You believers claim to have the answer (god & his word), but atheists don't see any reason to believe in what you believe. Since you are the believer, it is up to you to answer the questions of the critics, like me, if you care too. I'm not going to respond to the dogma that you and fred post because I've believed and considered that dogma for almost half a century. Dogma is boring because it doesn't explain WHY you believe; it only explains THAT you believe. I already have a library half filled with books that do that. I feel no need to respond to it, here.

      Finally, I have not "resorted to name calling." You should be more careful when making accusations. If I have "resorted" to anything, I have resorted to lengthier posts that cover a broad range of issues implied by those who worship a being who is going to torture me forever, so I'm actually being pretty nice. If you just post dogma, it's too boring to respond to. If you post REASONS WHY your dogma should be believed, that's interesting, and I might respond. Got it?

      February 15, 2012 at 10:55 am |
    • Believer

      Momoya you want proof?
      Heres some, Jsus' tomb was empty! The message spread without war, it went from home to home. Christianity would have been squashed if the religious leaders at the time could have provided a body, but they could not. Also the disciples could not have stolen it because there were guards! Also Paul was an elitist as someone said, he was killing christians then he radically became one. His whole belief system was against the idea of a resurection, his conversion was one of the biggest of the time. All other religions spread initially through war, the believe or die approach. Christians did not take this approach, they used reason and the evidence of the missing body. They used the believe, and you are probably going to be killed for doing so approach.

      February 15, 2012 at 11:52 am |
    • momoya

      @Believer

      If you'd like to prove the resurrection, go ahead. It's a story much older than jesus and shared by dozens of other deities. Why do you believe one fairy tale over others that are very similar? Might it be because of the dominant religion of your society?

      February 15, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
    • Believer

      nope, I believe it because of the way it spread. We know that Jesus existed and died, the thing we do not know is the resurrection. When the message went out that he resurrected it would have been so easy to squash the new movement, which went directly against the authority at the time. Most religions spread by the authorities, christianity spread against the Roman and Jewish authorities, against all odds.

      February 15, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
    • momoya

      @Believer

      About what I expected. It's not that you CAN produce rationalizations to believe your myth, it's that you MUST. Cheerio!

      February 15, 2012 at 3:46 pm |
    • fred

      momoya
      I fail to see the difference between your rationalizations and mine. In the world we observe a wide spectrum of people that range from materialist to spiritualist. Jesus would be on one end and none can reach that point though we should do our best as try. Materialists tend to be hard atheists at the extreme. I know there is far more to this existence than your limited fixed reality yet you on the other hand cannot move past your position. As one approaches Christ likeness freedom of thought and vision increases while the reverse is true as one begins to erect boundaries that are based upon unfounded scientific theory. I understand most of what the materialist understands because that simple knowledge is built up based upon what mankind can prove by scientific method. Knowledge that reveals what Christ clearly stated requires the power of the Holy Spirit. You have quenched the power of the Holy Spirit at some point in your life now demand that the things of God be proven using mans scientific method. This is not possible.
      Here is the tool. First you need to really want to know if God exists. If you do then meditate upon asking Jesus to show you the way. The issue of sin will come up and if you say there is no sin or no sin in your life the conversation will quickly end. On the other hand if you are open to the possibility of sin in your life that is a good beginning. Without sin there is no need for Jesus. Stick with it until you sense there is something more and ask Jesus to lead you towards the next step.

      February 15, 2012 at 7:00 pm |
    • 1st

      First of all a TRUE CHRISTIAN wouldn't take it due to Marks 8:36. If you know the Bible you'll notice the True relationship of the two from Isaac & Ishmael to the Prophet Muhammad's tracing roots back to Abraham. Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of GOD: because many fasle prophets are gone out into the world. They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world hearth them. We are of GOD: he that knoweth GOD hearth us; he that is not of GOD hearth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of TRUTH, and the spirit of ERROR.

      February 17, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
  12. momoya

    @ Believer

    For many decades I wasn't open to other possibilities, and you and I would be arguing together. When I finally did open myself to the possibility that I was wrong, it slowly began to fall into place. I understand very well why most christians could not do what I did; I'm just telling you the result. All religions are the same way. You likely see the faults of other religions, and were you honest and courageous enough, you'd be able to see the faults of your own holy book. You can force yourself to gloss over them with more and more faith–that's what it's for; It's your call.

    Yes, the bible has much correct history mixed in with inaccurate historical accounts. That's what happens when you perpetuate myths–you time them in with the current happenings and the future expectations. Also, remember who is writing this stuff down and why. It's the elite who want to record in a manner that shows the correctness of their motives and worship.

    As I said, most intelligent christians can rationalize away scriptural error and contradiction. The problem is that you MUST do it, and that you must do it after the facts point out the error–not before. Of course they use other scripture within their rationalizations, that's how they are assuming the authority to make the "correction" by "interpretation." You don't see christians running around trying to reinterpret the earth to be a coin shape–even though scripture allows such interpretation–you see christians insisting that the word means "sphere," in order to align with reality. But who knows that god isn't tricking us with perceiving a round earth just like some christians claim god is tricking us with evidence for evolution?

    God shows love and goodness in various manners and in various passages, yes. However, once a person is sentenced by him to hell, that new horrifying reality outweighs any other experience. Who cares about having lived on earth once they are in your god's hell? Which one of those suffering could possibly care about how good or loving he is to others not in his predicament. The mere idea of hell shows unimaginable horror in his being. God could have forgiven everyone just because he wanted to. God could have refrained from unending unimaginable horror. God could have made the bible a book of complete harmony that physicists and philosophers kept referring to for deeper and deeper understanding of the natural world and consciousness. They don't because they can't. Your god is indeed too evil and way, way too small for a thinking individual to honestly consider.

    February 14, 2012 at 12:15 pm |
    • GodPot

      Again, well said.

      And when you said "Also, remember who is writing this stuff down and why. It's the elite who want to record in a manner that shows the correctness of their motives and worship." it made me think about how the God of the bible changes over time as the Israelites grow from being a nomadic tribal people with a laughing and friendly God who jokes with Abraham, to the brutal God of the conquering Judges who swept the native inhabitants away like so much chaffe, women and children alike. Then you have the jealous and angry God of the Kings that sends the Israelites into slavery because they have stopped paying him enough attention. And all that juxtaposed against the "turn the other cheek", humble, servant like Christ that was supposedly God incarnate who had to "die" for our sins, but by definition, could not have so Christians faith today can only be based on a lie.

      Christians cannot explain how if we do indeed have a debt of sin that only giving a perfect life can pay, why we wouldn't still owe that debt because Jesus never really "died".

      I submit that on the premise that if their God has always existed, and according to Christians has never stopped existing, then there was no "life" given to pay the ransom for Adams sin. This would be like attaching a string to a quarter to use on a vending machine, they put the ransom sacrafice in and grabbed their salvation then 'Ziiiiiing' they yank on the string and pull their sacrafice back out. And why again did the universe not fall apart when the "God Glue" that holds it all together was apparently dead for 3 days? And I have heard all the Christian defenses of "It was one part of God, they are a trinity and only the son had to suffer and die" They know it's BS as it's coming out of their mouths but they have no other recourse since they have based their entire lives on it's veracity.

      February 14, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
    • Believer

      I too am open to the fact that I am wrong, I have done research and I have found no evidence to show me that Christianity is wrong. As for Christianity being the same as all religions, I disagree. I have spoken to many converts to christianity from other religions, such as Islam and they all say that the Bible is the most loving religious book. Christianity is the only religion that is not action oriented. It is the only religion to say I cant save myself, so God saved me. You blame Christians for fixing things after the fault is found, I dont understand that complaint. If you see something wrong you try and fix it, isnt that what science does all the time? Why cant religion do that? As for the elite writing them down, it wasnt them it was the poor apostles. You say he could have written a book to help us understand the natural world, but that was not the purpose of the Bible. The purpose of the Bible is to show the means of grace. If he told us everything, where would the fun be in discovering it? Also see Freds post on hell, hell is for the people who wanted God out of there lives and wanted nothing to do with him. That is what hell is, the absence of God. He is giving you exactly what you want, life without him.

      February 14, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
    • GodPot

      @believer " I have found no evidence to show me that Christianity is wrong." That is because you are looking for evidence to SUPPORT your position, not looking for the holes in your self assumed logic.

      February 14, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
    • Yo!

      "they all say that the Bible is the most loving religious book. "

      LOL! The Old Testament was rife with occasions when God not only sanctioned the murder, pillage and rape of the enemies of his chosen people, but, often God itself joined in, directly smiting people itself. Jeremiah 48:10 declares: "A curse on him who is lax in doing the LORD's work! A curse on him who keeps his sword from bloodshed!". It is clear that violence has a divine Biblical endorsement. But for what ends? Luke 14:23 says "Compel people to come in!" for the purpose of "filling" the Church. Jesus himself declared "think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword" (Matthew 10:34). And henceforth, Christian history contains many unfortunate chapters where Christian groups anathematized one another as heretics, and proceded to burn, torture and murder those who disagreed. Victims have been anyone who disagreed even on confusing technical points of Christian doctrine, members of other religions such as Muslims and Jews, and it seems, many other innocent victims ranging from outcasts who were accused of witchcraft ("Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live" – Exodus 22:18), homosexuals and finally, a small number who have genuinely plotted against the Church.

      February 14, 2012 at 1:47 pm |
    • Believer

      Godpot excellent questions, however you are taking Matthew 10:34 out of context, read the entire verse and you will find that Jesus is not telling his disciples to go kill and plunder, but that the disciples will be killed by the authorities. He did not bring peace for his believers, they were persecuted. If you look at the churchs history you will find that the witch trials and Crusades were in fact power struggles and go directly against Biblical teachings.
      Now as to your old testament r.ape and killing. The cultures that the Israelites wiped out were wicked. For instance there are graves with thousands of kids killed for child sacrifices. It was judgement and also a way to protect Israel from falling into these practices. Now for the r.aping interestingly when there was a r.ape God took care of the women. When an Israelite ra.ped a woman he was forced to provide for her afterwards. She had no family, no culture absolutly nothing. Then an Israelite male came in and married her and brought her into their culture. She was then saved because she recieved the messianic promise. You will never find God say go r.ape, he has the israelites pick wives of whom he would show mercy. God can make a bad situation, and turn it into something good and his mercy is shown. Also as for the slavery you will find that it is not like the slavery of the south, it is more like indentured servitude.

      February 14, 2012 at 5:09 pm |
    • Believer

      Sorry that last post was directed at yo, Godpot if you could show me this evidence that would be great, because I looked for evidence against the bible and could not find anything.

      February 14, 2012 at 6:20 pm |
    • GodPot

      " I looked for evidence against the bible and could not find anything."

      If by evidence you mean irrefutable proof then you are correct, other than the obvious 6 day creation lie which most Christians poo poo away as "allegory", there is not much solid evidence against biblical history, though none of the miracles or supernatural events in the bible show up anywhere else in history, even the star that supposedly led the wise men to Jesus which should have been visible to many other nations who were writing their own histories have no record of it.

      "Scholars have attempted to establish what star could have led the wise men (or 'kings') to Jesus, for centuries now. At the time of Jesus, various scribes in Palestine, Egypt, Greece, Persia and as far away as China, recorded every unusual celestial they saw, but never one that could have been the "Star of Bethlehem". Ian Wilson (Jesus: The Evidence) says the hard reality is that Matthew offers insufficient historicity (and the story of the wise men and the star appears only in Matthew) for anyone to be confident that there was a star at all.

      Some scholars believe that the star which appeared that appeared in 66 CE, and was described by Josephus in The Jewish War (6.5.3 289), could have inspired the author of Matthew in his account. Both talk of a star that 'stood' over a place (Jerusalem for Josephus; Bethlehem for Matthew) and both read the stars as telling of the coming of the Messiah (in Josephus' case, he told the victorious general, Vespasian, that he was the Messiah the Jews had waited for)." -answersdotcom

      February 14, 2012 at 10:40 pm |
    • Paul

      You make some big claims about inaccuracy, how about naming one as a for instance?
      You say the Bible books rely on other Bible books to understand it! yeah well what's wrong with that? It has one authur and as such you need to cross reference some scriptures to get the correct understanding as would be true of any book.

      February 15, 2012 at 12:44 am |
    • Lorraine

      Momoya, The problem with your analysis is that you are blaming YHWH, the Strong One of the sufferings and pains of son of man, when in fact its the fault of his own iniquities of wrong doings. In Deut. 28v64, the punishment of transgressions began for the chosen Israel, and any other nations who did idolatry, and wrong. There is no profit nor goodness in them or living unrighteously, there will be much suffering as a result of not obeying the law of YHWH. For it is our life as was told to us in Deut.32v45-47, by Moses, of righteousness and peace. As for the historical proof, the book of Daniel 7,11 has prophesied the reign of the beast representing the 10 horns of rulers over time. From Antioch killing Julius Caesar and son to Agutus

      February 17, 2012 at 8:42 am |
    • Lorraine

      Momoya, The problem with your analysis is that you are blaming YHWH, the Strong One of the sufferings and pains of son of man, when in fact its the fault of his own iniquities of wrong doings. In Deut. 28v64, the punishment of transgressions began for the chosen Israel, and any other nations who did idolatry, and wrong. There is no profit nor goodness in them or living unrighteously, there will be much suffering as a result of not obeying the law of YHWH. For it is our life as was told to us in Deut.32v45-47, by Moses, of righteousness and peace. As for the historical proof, the book of Daniel 7,11 has prophesied the reign of the beast representing the 10 horns of rulers over time. From Antioch killing Julius Caesar and son to Agustus Caesar ruling to Constantine legalizing Christianity in 311ce, its all been done and is still with us today, the idolatry of religions that take us all away from righteousness and the peace. The punishment is of our own wrong doings. And until we all do the law, the people of the world will have the problems of in difference, greed, hate, poverty, and so on. Yes, YHWH can stop the suffering but what He wants from us we will not do, and who is the Creator here? Many has truly forgotten Him, from us doing whatever we want to in this life that He gave to us, and this is so unfortunate for the son of man. We must do the law in Exodus 20, Deuteronomy.5 the 10 commandments, the sabbath, and the passover in Exodus 12, this is our life, our breath in Genesis 2v7, and not religion.

      February 17, 2012 at 9:07 am |
    • 1st

      Momoya, original text were written in languages one would have word for to translate. Multiple Rulers and Kingdoms upon suppressing those with the word through death and burning of their facts committed the no-no of adding or taking away from scripture to fit their way of life. IT'S A WAY OF LIFE TO GOD PEOPLE (JUDAISM), NOT A RELIGION. All other's were inspired by man, Jesus never said become a Christian, just do as he do as he said he do as his FATHER DO.

      February 17, 2012 at 1:57 pm |
    • GodPot

      @1st – " All other's were inspired by man,"

      So the 66 books written by over 40 authors that was decided upon by the council of Nicea is the work that no one else should add to or take away from, except of course during that time it was being written and then later when all the different letters and gospels were being sorted through to see which fit the new Roman Church 300 years after Christ died, this is the version that should not be changed, no more, done with changes, thats the inspired version, if it weren't I wouldn't be telling you this so you can believe it, no more adding to it or taking away...

      February 17, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
    • Believer

      Lets take a look at the books chosen in Nicea, The old testament books selected were considered scripture in Jesu.s day so they remained untouched. The new testament books were selected based on the time they were written. If they were written in the lifespan of the apostles they were accepted, if they werent then they did not make the cut.

      February 20, 2012 at 7:49 pm |
  13. laughing

    umm... hey "k"... you neglected to include the caveat in the fine print of the Quran that says that any restriction on killing others is null and void in the event that the killee isn't a card carrying muslim, and that, in fact, the killing of such individuals is encouraged and even rewarded. In closing, go away. Please. Far.

    February 14, 2012 at 5:25 am |
    • k

      I'd rather let God answer this
      When God ALONE is mentioned, the hearts of those who do not believe in the Hereafter shrink with aversion. But when others are mentioned beside Him, they become satisfied.[Quran 39:45]

      [Quran 6:116] If you obey the majority of people on earth, they will divert you from the path of God. They follow only conjecture; they only guess.
      [Quran 6:115] The word of your Lord is complete, in truth and justice. Nothing shall abrogate His words. He is the Hearer, the Omniscient.

      [Quran 3:95] Say, "God has proclaimed the truth: You shall follow Abraham's religion – monotheism. He never was an idolater."
      [Quran 45:6] These are God's revelations that we recite to you truthfully. In which Hadith other than God and His revelations do they believe?
      [Quran 6:161] Say, "My Lord has guided me in a straight path – the perfect religion of Abraham, monotheism. He never was an idol worshiper."

      [Quran 2:62] Surely, those who believe, those who are Jewish, the Christians, and the converts; anyone who (1) believes in God, and (2) believes in the Last Day, and (3) leads a righteous life, will receive their recompense from their Lord. They have nothing to fear, nor will they grieve.

      [Quran 2:136] Say, "We believe in God, and in what was sent down to us, and in what was sent down to Abraham, Ismail, Isaac, Jacob, and the Patriarchs; and in what was given to Moses and Jesus, and all the prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction among any of them. To Him alone we are submitters."

      [Quran 3:18] God bears witness that there is no god except He, and so do the angels and those who possess knowledge. Truthfully and equitably, He is the absolute god; there is no god but He, the Almighty, Most Wise.

      February 14, 2012 at 11:16 am |
    • laughing

      wow "k"...that's a whole lot of nothing! I see you have alot of free time in light of the fact that your girlfriends parents honor-killed her for letting you see part of her shin. You can cherry-pick quotes all day long, but the bottom line is that there are untold counts of sheer barbarism enacted in the name of and with the consent of that book...and it is just a book... every day.(And before you scream "Crusades", I put that tome in the same category as 'that book'.) The world would be a safer place without the myriad of fairy tales and myths that cloud the judgement of otherwise reasonable people.

      February 15, 2012 at 4:51 am |
  14. laughing

    The essay was entirely too long. I can summarize the 3 biggest biblical misconceptions much more succinctly. The beginning, the middle, and the end.

    February 14, 2012 at 5:15 am |
  15. Nii Croffie

    I can't stop laughing.

    February 14, 2012 at 3:22 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      Look! Momoya is writing long posts again! And Godpot, Yo!, ..., and others are freestyling on the theme 'God is wicked'. I love u guys as myself. Enjoy ur Val's Day.

      February 14, 2012 at 3:48 am |
  16. momoya

    @ Believer

    On the debate you posted below (Craig v Hitch). Listen to Hitchens in that debate with an open mind. Also, why is the existence of god even debatable at all? Nobody debates whether or not math exists, or cause and effect, or gravity.

    If people want to believe in a deist sort of god for slapping the universe together and spinning it out, that's cool, but there's absolutely ZERO proof for a personal god or any one of the thousands of gods that have been believed throughout the ages. The bible disagrees with itself all over the place and MAKES MUCH MORE SENSE as a bunch of myths slapped together a couple hundred years after fifty or so "messiahs" named Bob walked the streets of Jerusalem. (Jesus was a common name of the time–like "Bob" today)

    The bible makes soooooo much sense when studied for what it is–a bunch of myths extremely similar to the myths of the surrounding cultures–bundled together in one book by people who had an objective. The gospels, epistles, and myths that didn't seem favorable to the new cult weren't included.

    It's a lot more simple than believers and atheists make it out to be. So sayeth granny momoya!! 😀

    February 13, 2012 at 8:00 pm |
    • Believer

      This debate on Hitchens was so bad that even atheists.com called it a losing attempt by him.
      The reason why it is debated, and math is not is that math has been proven. God has never been proven or disproven.
      The deleted books were written centuries after christ, not decades like the books we have.
      If you watched the debate I showed you you will find that while Jesus was a common name, there was one who was crucified and then his tomb was inexclipably empty. Watch the debate and you will find that Hitchens does not argue that point.
      As for those contradictions, show me some Im interested, I have heard of various "misconceptions" However they can be shown to not be misconceptions at all. Show me some contradictory evidence of any historical fact that the Bible claims happened. There is none, archealogy has proven the Bible right every time.

      February 14, 2012 at 2:14 am |
    • Ptah

      Believer,

      Archeology confirms ancient Egyptian writings as history too - does that mean that their gods are real?

      Your ancient Hebrew writings (the Bible) are quite interesting on a cultural level. There is no evidence that their god and their superst'itions are real.

      Believe as you like, but it is not valid to claim that your beliefs are the one and only truth.

      February 14, 2012 at 4:03 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      Egyptian gods can be a start for your exploration of this world other than that which the Skeptic philosophy has boxed u into. I think there are now translations of Egyptian Holy Books too aand lots of cattle, sheep and goats. I heard Amun-Ra is the best too. Happy worshipping.

      February 14, 2012 at 6:55 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      Granny Momoya...?! Oh, the old evangelist who lost his faith while watching Discovery Channel! lol.

      February 14, 2012 at 7:01 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      Momoya how can you say that Bob is a common name so every Bob is a Bob? Bob Dole will sue you for calling him Bob Marley for sure! Jesus' full name was Yeshuah ben Yosef Ben David el Nazareahne (el Messhiah). Is that a common name. Funny.

      February 14, 2012 at 7:09 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      If as u say, u r nearing de grave n now u r simplifying things good for u! Rem'ber that an English synonym 4 simple is foolish. So watch out 4 foolishness as u simplify de Gospels, Epistles, etc n cast them aside as myths. I saw my mum moving on nothing more than faith n love 2wks b4 her death.

      February 14, 2012 at 7:33 am |
    • momoya

      @Believer

      Whether Hitch supposedly won or lost is irrelevant; what is important are the separate points he made. Yes, god has not been proven or disproved which is why christianity is mere PHILOSOPHY. Since the god of the bible is not proved or disproved it's stupid to consider the existence of his heaven or hell.

      Neither that debate nor any other evidence shows that a man was crucified and resurrected; it's dishonest of you to say so. You have your beliefs, but you don't have the facts that you claim to have. Hitch and others have addressed the supposed evidence of Christ's resurrection in other debates and books.

      I'm not interested in showing you any contradictions because you will simply do what ever other christian does–explain them away according to your own private methods of correcting such inconsistencies. Of course you have the ability to do this; every christian does; that's the point. Had the bible some standard method of settling disputes about its consistency, all you fellas would agree on ONE interpretation. You don't, and it is clear that every christian uses his own private method which gives rise to the various denominational differences.

      You should really stop lying about the archeology thing. Archeology has agreed with the bible in a few areas, but mostly it has disagreed with it. When archeology disagrees, christians do the little "side-step boogie-oogie" in order to change their interpretations to match up with the new archeological data that you did not have before. It's incredibly dishonest, but it's the only way to keep up, so you do it.

      Assuming that christianity is accurate, it was very stupid and misleading of god to provide a book that appears to go against science and archeology so much. It's stupid for that god to expect people to believe AGAINST the facts of science and history and have blind faith. And it's stupid AND evil for that god to punish people who don't believe what the bible says when, in order to believe it, you've got to change your interpretations every time a part of it is shown to be stupid in relation to science and history. Because so much of the bible's claims can be shown to be false, it's stupid to take it at face value on the things that are beyond proof (sin, redemption, heaven, hell). If the book is demonstrably wrong in so many practical ways, then it's stupid to believe that its perfect god made a plan destined to fail and so to fix it he had to exploit a loophole by sacrificing himself to himself to appease himself to stop himself from sending people to a torture pit that he made himself. The whole thing is just amazingly stupid, yet because you have blinded yourself with the myth, you can't see that it is a myth. it's understandable but still very sad.

      February 14, 2012 at 10:16 am |
    • Believer

      Archealogy has proven the bible wrong? Thats all you say without providing a single source or piece of evidence to justify your claims, however archealogy has shown that where the Bible says there is a city there is a city, it has found evidence for David. I could go on but until you show me any evidence that directly disproves the Bible, I will say that archealogy shows the Bible is right.

      February 14, 2012 at 10:26 am |
    • momoya

      @Believer

      I'm not your evidence gatherer, and you're smart enough that you could find dozens of examples of archeological evidence that disproves some portion or other of the bible. You're also smart enough to wriggle out of any discrepancy with special pleading. Something like "Oh, that part isn't to be taken literally, that part is figurative," while you turn away from the reality that if archeology had supported the bible's passage, you'd be listing it as archeological proof that supports the bible. You've heard that song before, and you know it.

      Believer, I think you know, deep down, that if you wanted to take my position, you'd have a very easy time finding all sorts of ways that archeology and science do NOT support your book. Certainly you have some ready, personal method of interpreting away the flood account as explained in Genesis and reaffirmed by Jesus. That's the point! You can always find a way to explain why the archeology doesn't need to match the scripture in this case, and that case, and that one over there. Or, you can always fall back into the comfortable pillows of "faith," whereby you don't have to do any explaining at all–and just let science and the bible disagree while you claim the bible to be consistent and worthy of belief.

      You can weasel out of any "discrepancy" that you meet because you've had plenty of practice, and you MUST do it in order to maintain your beliefs. Of course you can explain how the flood didn't happen as the bible says so that you agree with the facts. The problem is that the bible doesn't have a method whereby you could know the truth about "the flood" WITHOUT the benefit of science explaining that it could not have happened. That's the real problem, not whether certain cities existed with certain names. Just because you're throwing out red herrings doesn't mean that you don't know the real issue.

      A belief in the flood is wrong, but correct according to the bible in both old and new testaments. There's no way to know the truth about the flood from the bible alone; you can only specially plead for it being non-literal after science does its thing–not before. Your bible is silly and it requires you and other believers to be silly in order to maintain belief in it.

      February 14, 2012 at 10:56 am |
    • .....

      "I will say that archealogy shows the Bible is right."

      Even the Smithsonian stated that the bible is a religious document and NOT a historical book.

      February 14, 2012 at 10:58 am |
    • Believer

      You keep telling me to be open to all possibilities, however you have been far from doing that. You dont think I have done research on this? You dont think I have asked questions and checked to see which religion, if any was right? I have looked, and while the Bible is not a history book there is plenty of history in it and that history has not been proven wrong, And why do you say that the christian explanations for these so called contradictions arent good enough? Is it because that it is christians giving the answers? What christians do when they see what could be a contradiction they look deeper into the text, and also look at other parts of the bible to see if they have answers, they do. And again I must stress that if you read the Bible in its entirety, not just pick out random pieces, you get a God of Love and of Justice. The pieces that you are picking out indeed show an evil God, if all you are focused on is the hell. But you are missing the Gospel part of the bible which is what Christianity is all about.

      February 14, 2012 at 11:56 am |
    • momoya

      Believer, see my new post.

      February 14, 2012 at 12:16 pm |
    • jimtanker

      The whole point should be that Craig is a babbling idiot that doesn’t know the first thing about logic. Every other word out of his mouth is a fallacy.

      February 14, 2012 at 12:20 pm |
    • Yo!

      "I have looked, and while the Bible is not a history book there is plenty of history in it "

      LOL! So does the bookDa Vinci Codec but it doesn't mean that book is true either. LOL! There are plenty of factious books that have historical facts in them but they are still fiction. The problem is it can be shown with historical data of how the bible is taken from pagan religions of that time too, but of course you'll have excuses for that too.

      February 14, 2012 at 1:56 pm |
    • Believer

      You are comparing a piece of historical fiction, da vinci code which was written to be an entertaining story about history, against something that claims it is history? The da vinci code story never claims to be history, whereas the Bible says that what it said happened, is what happened and nothing in the bible has been proven wrong.

      February 14, 2012 at 5:17 pm |
  17. Believer

    ...
    He is as powerful as I claim, he could have made predestination but he diddnt. He chose not too, he chose to give us free will. Choice is different than power.

    iwonder
    I would believe it, if that is in fact what the Bible taught however it is not what the Bible teaches.

    February 13, 2012 at 7:11 pm |
    • momoya

      A parent who gives their child a choice between chocolate pie and a fork in the eye is a horrible parent.

      Hell-creating gods are disgusting because that god didn't have to make eternal torture an option at all.

      Worshipers of hell-creating gods are disgusting because they think uberterrorism is a "holy and good" tactic.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:44 pm |
    • GodPot

      well said momoya.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:46 pm |
    • fred

      Momya and Godpot
      Nonsense for an atheist to complain about hell or anything else God would choose to create. You are like the Greeks that want to fashion a God after their own thoughts and desires. This is why you hate God, your thoughts and desires are godless and you know it.
      Now, as to shoving hell down a childs throat that is something wacked out parents do just as you shove atheism down a childs throat as Stalin did. Both of you and those types of parents need counseling and love in your life. No place in the Bible does Jesus say shove hell down their throats.
      If you understood God you would understand what hell is. Until then you will continue with your warped sense of God and life.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:57 pm |
    • momoya

      @ fred

      Wow, but you're the pretentious christian aren't you?

      I'm not complaining about the god of the bible; I'm explaining that he's the most horrific terrorist ever considered by humanity. I'm explaining that those who think god is good and just are warped individuals for thinking everlasting torment is a good and just act. It's not my problem. It's yours.

      February 13, 2012 at 8:45 pm |
    • Believer

      I believe that the word you are looking for is authoritarian, not terrorist. Terrorists strike randomly to spread fear. Authoritarians control everything. In fact God is neither of these, he gave us a free will, we get to choose weather or not we get to obey him. Once again it is not his fault that you choose not to listen. And as for terrorism, sure some preachers use scare tactics to bring people to Christ however if you read the Bible you will find that Jesus did not use fear, he used love. In a just society there are consequences for our actions, God is our government, he must judge we all sin and fail the judgement there must be consequences. He has made it realitivly easy to avoid such consequences, all you need to do is accept he is the way to salvation. You are so hung up on the existence of hell that you forget that he has made it easy to avoid it.

      February 14, 2012 at 2:22 am |
    • ....

      "In fact God is neither of these, he gave us a free will, we get to choose weather or not we get to obey him."

      LMAO! You are just too funny. DUH! If you don't choose to love it then your other choice is to burn in hell for eternity. Yeah...that is some loving god. So if a parent told you that if their child didn't choose to obey them they were going to stick their hands in scalding hot water, what would you say. DUH- That is a cruel parent! Wow the stupidity of people is just appalling.

      February 14, 2012 at 10:21 am |
    • momoya

      @ Believer

      You're quibbling over the word "terrorism" when you're talking about a being who tortures for eternity–you know, where even a trillion, trillion, trillion years of utmost horrible pain is not even .00000000000000000000000001% of the punishment? Call it what you will; I call it uber-uber terrorism and the most evil action anyone can ever imagine.

      And yes, it is god's fault. God didn't have to build the lake of fire and he doesn't have to sustain it. Again, a parent (or grandparent, in my case) is an evil person if she gives her kids a choice between apple pie and a stick in the eye–especially when her instructions aren't perfectly clear and testable. Whether or not hell is easy to avoid is irrelevant. God built hell; he makes people go there instead of some other option; he sustains it. People don't have a way to ponder eternity or eternal suffering. The bible seems wrong in thousands of ways, despite all the mind tricks that the faithful use to maintain their faith, and for that reason god is stupid.

      Your argument about avoiding hell would ONLY work if the bible was absolutely correct in every statement. If the bible had its stuff together and actually gave an accurate depiction of scientific and mathematical principles, it would be hard to disbelieve it. God would still be an uber-uber terrorist for creating and maintaining hell as even an option, but at least people could trust that it was an actual possibility and "be saved." The bible has verifiable mistakes all over the place and it's various myths clearly correspond to the myths of the cultures of the time and area where and when that portion was written. For that reason alone it should not be believed, but it's god is evil beyond comparison because of the options he presents. If god really wants to save everyone, then he can do it, and there's no reason for him not to do it. Being god, he could then provide a method whereby each person could gain whatever magical and invisible structures they need within their "soul." Not only is your god the most evil being imaginable, but he's the most confusing–as is evidenced by the stupidity of the bible.

      February 14, 2012 at 10:37 am |
    • fred

      Momoya
      You said "tortures for eternity–you know, where even a trillion, trillion, trillion years of utmost horrible pain"

      No, God does not torture. You have made the choice to be separate from God and that is what he gives you. Notice even here God is very giving. Eternity is forever so let's say an atheist chooses to reject God. In the atheist world view the blob of organic matter and chemical reactions cease upon death then nonexistence for eternity follows. This is the heaven you have chosen over what God has offered. God, in His loving and merciful ways, may just grant that to some. What we know for absolute certain from the Bible is that Hell is a place reserved for Satan and his demons. What God chooses to allow between those two eternities is not up us after death. According to the Bible what we do during our life time will determine our eternal consequence or reward. Even non existence is a consequence in some ways. The Bible further makes clear that one of the consequences is a realization of the wonder that is in God which words could never express. Everyone will see that wonder and will see the truth this part is also very clear. The truly satanic will remain filled with hate and evil towards God and all the goodness that is God which the lake of fire is an eternity they prefer over that with a bunch of joyous worshipers. Others will see the wonder and know they will spend eternity outside of that wonder. Eternity in this case could be timelessness we are not told but it contrasts with eternal life in the presence of an eternal God. Hell is word that fits in a way but is different than a lake of fire which was specifically stated.

      I really don’t know what your beef is. You chose now to reject wonder and joyous worship. Your heart and mind are that of a materialist that rejects the non tangible non physical realities even the Neanderthal were once well aware of. Your heart (soul ) would find an eternal love lacking as did the most beautiful of beings God ever created who eventually could not take worshiping God and rose up against Him.

      Check out the perfection of God who has humanity swimming upstream in a river of good and evil like salmon where only a few from each generation demonstrate a true desire for eternal goodness. They have their eyes set on a hope, a promise as did the godly men of old. Just as with Abraham they died before reaching the promise but their true heart was revealed and they will be with God. If Abraham did not have the hard scientific facts you demand why would God give them to you? I tell you why, such facts would actually blind you from seeking that which cannot be seen. Faith cannot grow where none is needed. Unanswered prayer requires greater faith than prayer verified to be 84% effective when one faces the exact direction in the proper position based upon page 42 of the prayer manual.

      February 14, 2012 at 1:06 pm |
    • Yo!

      "You chose now to reject wonder and joyous worship. Your heart and mind are that of a materialist that rejects the non tangible non physical realities even the Neanderthal were once well aware of. Your heart (soul ) would find an eternal love lacking as did the most beautiful of beings God ever created who eventually could not take worshiping God and rose up against Him. "

      Now take that sentence and apply it to Hitler, what you are trying to sell is worshiping something that is evil and morally unjust like Hitler – it's disgusting. You are blind to the real truth of how evil and corrupt your god is as explained in your bible. Your weak mind allows you to pass over the cruelty of what your god has done to humanity. That is your choice but stop trying to sell your corrupt BS, the only fool here is you.

      February 14, 2012 at 1:16 pm |
    • GodPot

      @Yo! – "Now take that sentence and apply it to Hitler, what you are trying to sell is worshiping something that is evil and morally unjust like Hitler – it's disgusting. You are blind to the real truth of how evil and corrupt your god is as explained in your bible."

      That's because Hitler lost, if he had won he would likely have been a hero to Christians everywhere and we probably wouldn't have heard anything about jew filled ovens since history is written by the victors, just like the history we have of the Roman Catholic Church that has been re-writing world history for almost 1500 years. When any of their hero's reputations get's smudged they just use the hem of their robes to wipe out that tidbit of history. If it weren't for the ability of the victims to now get their stories out to a wider audience through the media we likely wouldn't hear about the thousands of abuse cases that have come to light as the Church would have just glossed over it as an internal "struggle" and it would never have been seen as the epidemic it really is.

      February 14, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
    • momoya

      @fred

      Your long statements of dogma don't address my concerns; they address your own concerns that arise from you reading my posts. I've read every word that you've typed, more than once, but you offer no convincing reasons why I should attempt to find meaning in your perspective.

      February 14, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
    • Believer

      Fred has an excellent argument, you complain that God created hell, however he is giving you exactly what you want a life without him. That is what hell is. And as for worshiping God the same as worshiping Hitler, Hitler commanded his men to do evil, where does God tell us to do evil? Look at my some other posts above before you say he had the Israelites kill the caananites.

      February 14, 2012 at 5:14 pm |
    • GodPot

      "you complain that God created hell, however he is giving you exactly what you want a life without him. That is what hell is." No, heII is having to listen to your nonsense. Heaven would be living in a world without "believers".

      February 17, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
  18. k

    Believe in one and only one God. Every time humanity deviated from this path, God sent down His of prophets (Noah, Ibrahim, Mosses Jesus and Mohammed were among thousands) who carried this single message to the whole humanity (And they all had the highest moral standards). That is the message of Islam.

    God speaks to the whole humanity through His book Quran..

    “Proclaim, He is the One and only GOD. The Absolute GOD. Never did He beget. Nor was He begotten. None equals Him." [112:1]

    “They even attribute to Him sons and daughters, without any knowledge. Be He glorified. He is the Most High, far above their claims.” Quran [6:100]

    “The example of Jesus, as far as GOD is concerned, is the same as that of Adam; He created him from dust, then said to him, "Be," and he was.” Quran [3:59]

    “…anyone who murders any person who had not committed murder or horrendous crimes, it shall be as if he murdered all the people. And anyone who spares a life, it shall be as if he spared the lives of all the people....." Qur'an [5:32]

    Most exalted is the One in whose hands is all kingship, and He is Omnipotent.The One who created death and life for the purpose of distinguishing those among you who would do better. Quran [67.2]

    Subsequent to them, we sent Jesus, the son of Mary, confirming the previous scripture, the Torah. We gave him the Gospel, containing guidance and light, and confirming the previous scriptures, the Torah, and augmenting its guidance and light, and to enlighten the righteous. Quran [5:46]

    Thanks for taking time to read my post. Please take a moment to clear your misconception by going to whyIslam org website.

    O people of the scripture, do not transgress the limits of your religion, and do not say about GOD except the truth. The Messiah, Jesus, the son of Mary, was a messenger of GOD, and His word that He had sent to Mary, and a revelation from Him. Therefore, you shall believe in GOD and His messengers. You shall not say, "Trinity." You shall refrain from this for your own good. GOD is only one god. Be He glorified; He is much too glorious to have a son. To Him belongs everything in the heavens and everything on earth. GOD suffices as Lord and Master. Quran [4:171]

    (Jesus) As a messenger to the Children of Israel: "I come to you with a sign from your Lord – I create for you from clay the shape of a bird, then I blow into it, and it becomes a live bird by God's leave. I restore vision to the blind, heal the leprous, and I revive the dead by God's leave. I can tell you what you eat, and what you store in your homes. This should be a proof for you, if you are believers. [3:49]

    February 13, 2012 at 10:49 am |
    • GodPot

      "And they all had the highest moral standards" So it's okay to follow the path of Abraham and sleep with our Egyptian handmaiden slavegirl who is not our wife, but only if our wife poves to be barren? Got it. Now when you say "High" moral standards you don't mean as in "marijauna high" do you?

      February 13, 2012 at 7:51 pm |
    • Nii Croffie

      Hagar was Abraham's wife from the time she slept with him. Her consent was sought. In polygamous societies the first wife had the right to refuse or present another woman entering the marriage. This is why Sarah sought permission from Abraham to punish his second wife for misbehaving towards her.

      February 14, 2012 at 6:24 am |
    • Nii Croffie

      You are assuming Abraham came from a monogamous culture but he didn't nor did he come from your culture which says slaves have no rights. In your culture both Hagar and Ishmael will be slaves. Ishm ael will be an Egypti an not Hebrew and will be a bas ta rd.

      February 14, 2012 at 6:34 am |
  19. Robert

    Hell is a metaphor for the intense remorse of conscience we will feel in the next life when we realize the evil we have done. Christ stands as our advocate and mediator with justice, and pays the debt for us if we accept the terms and conditions he laid down, i.e., live his Gospel.

    February 12, 2012 at 11:40 pm |
    • Believer

      Hitler was evil, he killed because of genetics. He had no reason to kill the Jews, they broke no law of his.
      God is good. But he is also just, we broke his law. Every single person has sinned. He has provided an escape. We can take it, if we want too. Would an evil God provide a way to escape his just wrath? If he truly was evil he would have created us and sent us immediatly to hell, however that is not what he did.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:18 pm |
    • Yo!

      "Would an evil God provide a way to escape his just wrath? If he truly was evil he would have created us and sent us immediatly to hell, however that is not what he did."

      You have absolutely no proof of that, nor do you know where people truly end up. The excuses people make for believing in their gods is hysterical.

      February 14, 2012 at 1:18 pm |
  20. Rick Shellhammer

    Do what's written on your heart and do it fo the glory of God. It's clearly spelled out in theNewTestament. The rest will fall into place.

    February 12, 2012 at 11:01 am |
    • momoya

      @Rick

      So you believe that a good god torments people forever and ever in a lake of torture that he built and sustains for eternity? You support the worst terrorist that humanity has ever considered. That's disgusting.

      February 12, 2012 at 11:45 am |
    • Believer

      He is a good God, we chose the lake of fire when we sinned and disobeyed him. He provided an escape, is it his fault that we dont take it?

      February 12, 2012 at 1:03 pm |
    • GodPot

      He is a good God, we chose the lake of fire, you know, and eternity of torment and never ending torture, all for the crime of not listening to those crazy white people that kept saying we had to bow down to their God. We lived good lives, never hurt others, were compassionate and kind, but for the sin of spending the few short years, and some not even that for many believe if you die before baptism you'll go to heII as well, but just a tiny speck of time apparently for the sin of inaction, and for that your just and "Good" God will spend an eternity turning me over a spit or dipping me in brimstone. Boy, he does sound "Good"...

      February 12, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
    • Believer

      When a murderer is put before trial he does not say, well you cant put me i prison because I donated to charity. We are judged on what we did wrong, not what we did right.

      February 12, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
    • Believer

      Also if someone has truly lived a perfect life, then they would be saved.

      February 12, 2012 at 1:52 pm |
    • Believer

      Also if someone has truly lived a perfect life, then they would be saved. Actually they would have no need to be saved, they would just go straight to heaven when they die all on their own.

      February 12, 2012 at 1:53 pm |
    • momoya

      @Believer

      God is a disgusting terrorist for building and sustaining a lake of torment–regardless of any other factors. Your god could have chosen annihilation, or punishment until lessons are learned, or excruciating pain for 100X the amount of sins, but he didn't do that, nope, your god wants to torture people forever and ever and ever in a lake of fire. That's not a good god; that's a perverted, sick freak.

      February 12, 2012 at 8:00 pm |
    • Believer

      1st Timothy 2:3-4 God our Savior who desires that all should be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

      If he truly wanted to torture us forever he would not have sent his son to save us. He gave a way that everybody could be saved, all you need to die is lower your pride and accept that. Once again it is not his fault that you decide not to accept.

      February 12, 2012 at 10:04 pm |
    • Robert

      God doesn't torment us in the next life if we live bad here. Our own consciences will torment us. God knows that and wants to help us avoid it. The pain has the potential to be so exquisite that he sent his only Son to pay the debt for us--if we will only change our ways and accept the terms and conditions he lays down-living the Gospel he taught.

      February 12, 2012 at 11:44 pm |
    • momoya

      @Believer

      If god wanted to save everyone from hell, he could do it. Besides, if god didn't want anyone to go to hell then he didn't have to build it and he doesn't have to sustain it. God made hell and he lets people go there; therefore, he is a disgusting terrorist.

      Hell is god's fault because he built it. He's god; he didn't have to.

      February 13, 2012 at 1:34 pm |
    • Believer

      It was either hell or free will. With sin there must be consequences, peoplee forget that he is a good and just God, they just want to hear good. Hell is our fault for disobeying him, he has redeemed us if we accept him. Its really easy to avoid hell if you are truly this concerned, just believe and be saved. Anyone can do it, unlike the other religions where you have to live a great life which very few if any can do.

      February 13, 2012 at 5:24 pm |
    • Believer

      *Either hell or no free will

      February 13, 2012 at 5:32 pm |
    • LinCA

      @Believer

      You said, "With sin there must be consequences"
      Lucky for me that I'm free of sin, then.

      You said, "peoplee forget that he is a good and just God, they just want to hear good."
      Condemning people to eternal suffering for nothing more than not believing in a god for which there is no evidence is neither good nor just.

      You said, "Hell is our fault for disobeying him, he has redeemed us if we accept him."
      If the dude want me to accept him, he better provide some signs that he is more than the figment of the imagination of believers.

      You said, "Its really easy to avoid hell if you are truly this concerned, just believe and be saved."
      Suspension of disbelief for rational people requires some indication that there is something to believe in. The christian god fails to meet that very basic requirement.

      You said, "Anyone can do it"
      Easier said than done. It is virtually impossible for me to believe that nonsense without some evidence or even a rational story line.

      You said, "unlike the other religions where you have to live a great life which very few if any can do."
      According to some of the christian narratives, you are wrong.

      But even if you are correct, that still makes no sense whatsoever. A murderer can convert on his deathbed and go to heaven, while an honest atheist will be sent to hell for nothing more than failing to believe.

      Your god isn't good or just, he's a monster. I will gladly spend an eternity in hell if the alternative is having to spend a day with the monster you call your god and his followers.

      February 13, 2012 at 5:38 pm |
    • momoya

      @Believer

      No, if god is bound by rules higher than himself then he is not god. In other words, god could have given free-will and not created hell; if god was bound to construct hell in order to give free-will then he is not god.

      Your god is a disgusting terrorist who loves his own handiwork and therefore his pit of eternal torture. You are complicit in his terrorism when you make excuses for and believe in such a horrible deity.

      February 13, 2012 at 5:47 pm |
    • Believer

      Dont worry about it then if you truly are sinless then you wont go to hell. All of this only applies to sinners. Also the condeming of which I speak is not for not believing, it is for sin in general. However putting your trust in him saves you, not doing it is not the part that is condemning. As for no evidence for believing, if there is no evidence then why are there so many believers? There is plenty of evidence, watch this debate between Hitchens and Craig if you get the chance, the evidence for God is there.
      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4KBx4vvlbZ8&w=640&h=360]

      February 13, 2012 at 5:51 pm |
    • Believer

      @momoya

      Once again you are missing that God is good and Just, The just implies that he has consequences for our actions. Hell is the consequence, and he has giving us the opportunity to avoid it. The definition of God that you want is one where there are no consequences for anything. That is not how God works, there are consequences for disobedience just like any government, its just this judgement is more severe than any that an earthly government can deal. Once again I must stress that he has given us a way out of this judgement, he even sent his only son to die for us so that we will not have to be judged. All he wants is for us to accept this and love him. Your worldview is that God brought sin to us, the correct one is that we brought this judgement onto ourselves by sinning. And then he saved us from ourselves. Once agai I must stress if you truly lived a perfect life, you would not go to heaven however we do not.

      February 13, 2012 at 6:02 pm |
    • ....

      "Once again I must stress that he has given us a way out of this judgement, he even sent his only son to die for us so that we will not have to be judged. All he wants is for us to accept this and love him."

      What you are describing is NOT a loving god but a tyrant and a monster. It's hysterical that you actually believe crap that was written thousands of years ago with NO proof!

      February 13, 2012 at 6:06 pm |
    • Believer

      To anonymous

      As I have tried to show he is not a tyrant. He loves us and wanted us to love and obey him on our own will. We did not we sinned and justly deserve consequences, just like you go to prison if you disobeyed tax laws. If God is a tyrant than every government is tyranny and you must object to the very idea of government. As for proof we have it, watch the debate look it up on google. The bible is the most historicaly accurate book in history, archealogy has proven it right on every point.

      February 13, 2012 at 6:11 pm |
    • ....

      "As I have tried to show he is not a tyrant. He loves us and wanted us to love and obey him on our own will."

      Not only does the existence of God logically, philosophically and theologically deny the possibility of free will, but the Bible also says that there is no free will! Examining the writings of St Paul, the Biblical books of Ephesians, Romans, 2 Timothy, 2 Thessalonians and Revelations, we see that God's plan overrides our free will; those that do good do the specific good that God predestined them to do, and all others are ruled by Satan because God sends "powerful delusions" to them. The Christian Bible frequently states that God creates our future and decides our fates, no matter what our own will is. It constantly denies that we have free will.

      February 13, 2012 at 6:13 pm |
    • ....

      "We did not we sinned and justly deserve consequences, just like you go to prison if you disobeyed tax laws."

      No, the idea is that you are to LOVE this god and if you don't love it you burn for all eternity that is NOT like going to jail, that is like being going to the oven under Hitler's rule and we all know he was a tyrant and a monster too!

      February 13, 2012 at 6:15 pm |
    • GodPot

      "Also if someone has truly lived a perfect life, then they would be saved. Actually they would have no need to be saved, they would just go straight to heaven when they die all on their own."

      "15 The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. 16 And the LORD God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; 17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.” Gen 2:15-17

      When would Adam have died and gone to heaven if he had not eaten of the forbidden fruit? It sounds to me like the penalty for eating the fruit was death, or does your bible say something different? And even after sinning the bible says he lived to be 800 years old which seems like a pretty long time to wait for punishment.

      February 13, 2012 at 6:16 pm |
    • Believer

      Anonymous
      Excellent questions on the free will, however probably to your surprise there is an answer. When you have a kid and you tell them not to go into the cookie jar, you still know that they probably will. You know that the kid is going to disobey you, however you did not force them too. And then you plan on what to do after the child has done this. God knows what you are going to do and plans accordingly, however he does not force us to do anything. And as I said it is not the lack of love that is condemning it is the actual sinning. The believing is the redemption.

      Godpot
      Once again excellent question, if Adam would not have aten from the apple then he would not have died. And earth would not be like it is today, a fallen place. It would have been perfect just like Heaven is and we would have been in communion with God. In fact in Revelation God speaks of a new perfect earth in which we will reside and be in communion with our Lord. Really what I was saying was a moot point because no one is perfect.

      February 13, 2012 at 6:24 pm |
    • ....

      "When you have a kid and you tell them not to go into the cookie jar, you still know that they probably will. You know that the kid is going to disobey you, however you did not force them too"

      Yeah, isn't it funny your God should have known then that Eve would eat the fruit but yet it condemn all of humanity for her mistake. DUH!

      February 13, 2012 at 6:27 pm |
    • ....

      "God knows what you are going to do and plans accordingly,"

      The doctrine of predestination is like the doctrine of original sin. They affirm that God is not just, not moral, and is actively evil and arbitrary. Not only do god's plans override free will, but, God also punishes those who it has predetermined to be punished. There is no grand moral plan to god's will. It makes no sense to say that this is the behavior of a good god. The New Testament makes more sense if its schemes are the plan of an evil god, rather than a good one.

      February 13, 2012 at 6:30 pm |
    • Believer

      Yes he did know, but he did not want us to be puppets, he wanted us to have the free will he knew that we would abuse it, so he prepared our salvation in Jesus Christ.

      February 13, 2012 at 6:30 pm |
    • .....

      "Yes he did know, but he did not want us to be puppets, he wanted us to have the free will he knew that we would abuse it"

      If he knows you have no free will and he purposely puts people in hell, the bible makes more sense when you realize the evilness of your god, just like Hitler was too.

      February 13, 2012 at 6:32 pm |
    • .....

      "so he prepared our salvation in Jesus Christ."

      Again you're making my point it killed it's own son for it's mistakes, that's evil!

      February 13, 2012 at 6:33 pm |
    • Believer

      Who was talking about predestination? Me? Nope I am not a Calvinist and do not believe in that. He does not force us to go accept him, nor does he force us to refuse him. Thats all us. As for the evil schemes of the New testament, which ones are you talking about? The way he saved us from ourselves by the means of grace? That he decided to be merciful and not leave us to the fate we chose? If he diddnt intervene in the New Testament then we would all be going to hell.

      February 13, 2012 at 6:34 pm |
    • .....

      "Nope I am not a Calvinist and do not believe in that. He does not force us to go accept him, nor does he force us to refuse him."

      LMAO – Yo dude you only have two choice Heaven or Hell- duh using fear to control you so you'll choose to love it – just like Hitler. If you don't love it you burn for all eternity....yeah that some choosing you got going on there. Your stupidity is making you blind.

      February 13, 2012 at 6:37 pm |
    • Believer

      Are you serious about still bringing up the no free will? I have shown you we have it, knowing what we are going to do with it is not forcing us to act that way. It was not his mistake that we disobeyed him, it was 100% ours, would you rather he created us all to be puppets? Or that he never created us in the first place?

      February 13, 2012 at 6:38 pm |
    • .....

      "The way he saved us from ourselves by the means of grace? "

      So go kill your son and try telling the court you did it as a means of grace. LMAO!

      February 13, 2012 at 6:38 pm |
    • .....

      "It was not his mistake that we disobeyed him, it was 100% ours"

      Wow are you brainwashed or what. LOL! He already knew the choices people would make and for those going to hell he does nothing to stop it – it is his CHOICE to burn them!

      February 13, 2012 at 6:41 pm |
    • Believer

      Your right that is some choosing there, Ill take the loving. I love a God who loves me, and I dont have to go to hell. Im still not seeing your evidence for an evil God, because without him sending his son we would either A: die and be in eternal nothingness, or B: die and go to hell. Just the fact that we can go to heaven shows that he is a loving God. If he was an evil God then no one would go to heaven.

      February 13, 2012 at 6:42 pm |
    • .....

      "just the fact that we can go to heaven shows that he is a loving God. "

      Yeah the people who support Hitler probably feel the same way too.

      February 13, 2012 at 6:44 pm |
    • Believer

      Killed his son and rose him from the dead. If Jesus truly just died I would agree with you, but he rose from the dead. And did you read the rest of the post? Would you rather you had no free will, or in fact never got created?

      February 13, 2012 at 6:44 pm |
    • Believer

      God is not Hitler. Hitler killed people just because of genetics, no matter what they have done. Hitler diddnt care about law, he cared about genes. God cares about Law, we broke the Law. He gave us a way out of the consequences.

      February 13, 2012 at 6:47 pm |
    • .....

      "And did you read the rest of the post? Would you rather you had no free will,"

      DUH – If you're god is as powerful as you think it is – it already knows your life and it's predestine according to YOUR bible. Wow know wonder you actually think this god exists. DUH!

      February 13, 2012 at 6:47 pm |
    • .....

      "Hitler killed people just because of genetics, no matter what they have done."

      DUH – what do you think your god did in the great flood – it killed everyone but Noah's family, women and children because of their genetics to Adam and Eve! DUH! Wow are you blind.

      February 13, 2012 at 6:49 pm |
    • Believer

      As I have said I do not believe in Predestination, Foreknowledge is not the same as forcing. If you had no free will and he controlled every movement then I would agree with you his is a tyrant and a dictator, however that is not what the Bible teaches.

      As for me being blind about the flood,I suggest you reread that story. It says that the reason the flood happened is because the wickedness of man had increased way to much. It was not because of genetics. The reason why Noah was saved was because he was the only righteous one left. Everybody came from Adam and Eve including those who died in the flood, and those who did not die in the flood..

      February 13, 2012 at 6:56 pm |
    • Yo!

      "As for me being blind about the flood,I suggest you reread that story. It says that the reason the flood happened is because the wickedness of man had increased way to much. It was not because of genetics. The reason why Noah was saved was because he was the only righteous one left. Everybody came from Adam and Eve including those who died in the flood, and those who did not die in the flood.."

      You are so lost that it's actually funny. Your god killed everyone and of course the writers had to say everyone was evil but how can babies be evil – DUH – it's just an excuse to cover up the atrocities your god did – just like Hitler.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:01 pm |
    • .....

      "As I have said I do not believe in Predestination, Foreknowledge is not the same as forcing. If you had no free will and he controlled every movement then I would agree with you his is a tyrant and a dictator, however that is not what the Bible teaches."

      If your god was as powerful as you claim everyone's life is already predetermined, if not then our god is not as powerful as you think. LMAO!

      February 13, 2012 at 7:02 pm |
    • i wonder

      Believer: "I am not a Calvinist and do not believe in that."

      Ah, so you are a *non-believer* in Calvinism (and predestination).

      What would it take to convince you that their concepts are true?

      February 13, 2012 at 7:03 pm |
    • Believer

      Yo I hate to break this to you but there is such a thing as original sin. Since Adam sinned he has passed on that sinful nature to future generations. The minute you are born you are born as a sinful being. That is just the way it is. It is regrettable that babies are born into this, but it happens. No child is perfect, and no baby is perfect. What is the first thing that the baby does when it comes out? It cries which shows that it has been born into this fallen world. Also I believe that the Bible is the word of God, and since there has been no direct contradictory evidence against it I believe that it was right on this point too.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:08 pm |
    • .....

      "The minute you are born you are born as a sinful being. That is just the way it is. It is regrettable that babies are born into this, but it happens. No child is perfect, and no baby is perfect. What is the first thing that the baby does when it comes out? It cries which shows that it has been born into this fallen world. Also I believe that the Bible is the word of God, and since there has been no direct contradictory evidence against it I believe that it was right on this point too."

      More excuses for your god killing thousands of innocent babies, you should write a book showing your support for Hitler too – your so great at making excuses.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:12 pm |
    • Believer

      ...
      He is as powerful as I claim, he could have made predestination but he diddnt. He chose not too, he chose to give us free will. Choice is different than power.

      iwonder
      I would believe it, if that is in fact what the Bible taught however it is not what the Bible teaches.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:12 pm |
    • Yo!

      "I believe that the Bible is the word of God, and since there has been no direct contradictory evidence against it I believe that it was right on this point too."

      The Flood, which saw God wipe out all of humankind, is neither a good response to being displeased, nor is it even a good moral story symbolically.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:16 pm |
    • GodPot

      "It would have been perfect just like Heaven is and we would have been in communion with God. In fact in Revelation God speaks of a new perfect earth in which we will reside and be in communion with our Lord." Is this new earth going to be on this planet? Or will he just whip up a new one? If thats the plan then why wait? Is that what heaven is? Just a new planet somewhere in the galaxy that hasn't been plundered by ignorant religious zealots yet? Why would there be a need for heaven or heII if thats God's plan for man?

      February 13, 2012 at 7:20 pm |
    • Believer

      Hitler was evil, he killed because of genetics. He had no reason to kill the Jews, they broke no law of his.
      God is good. But he is also just, we broke his law. Every single person has sinned. He has provided an escape. We can take it, if we want too. Would an evil God provide a way to escape his just wrath? If he truly was evil he would have created us and sent us immediatly to hell, however that is not what he did.

      Yo
      It was not about Gods displeasure, It was about his judgement on people who have broken his law. It was a just response, and whatever is just is good.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:22 pm |
    • Peter

      "God who loves me, and I dont have to go to hell. Im still not seeing your evidence for an evil God, because without him sending his son we would either A: die and be in eternal nothingness"

      If God is all-powerful and all-good, it would have created a universe in the same way it created heaven: with free will for all, no suffering and no evil. But evil and suffering exist. Therefore God does not exist, is not all-powerful or is not benevolent (good). The existence of such large quantities of suffering, despair, pain, of natural disasters such as earthquakes, of the death of the unborn and the immense suffering of lovers & kind-hearted people means that god is evil and intentionally creates life in order to create suffering. That all life exists in a food chain means that life is completely tied to death, and such a barbaric biological cycle could only have been made by an evil god. Also, that such a god appears not to exist, or actively hides itself, is a source of confusion, conflict, war and stress and is again more likely the antics of an evil god. Given the state of the natural world, it is impossible that a good god exists. It is more likely that an evil god exists, but, it is sensible to assume that there is no god of either type. Even if there is not a god of either type, as the dominance of death and violence in the natural world, a result of nature being abused by life and not being designed for life, I think the evil symbol of Satan is the best representative of the state of reality and the universe, whether or not an actual evil god exists.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:22 pm |
    • ....

      "We can take it, if we want too. Would an evil God provide a way to escape his just wrath? "

      Hitler did that too.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:23 pm |
    • Yo!

      "and whatever is just is good."

      LOL! So if a person doesn't love your god they have to burn in hell for all eternity that is just to you? LOL! Wow you are one sick person.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:25 pm |
    • Believer

      Godpot. No this new earth is not going to be in this universe. God says that he will destroy this universe which we messed up. I do not know how he is going to do this, nor do I fully understand the difference between this new earth and heaven.
      Peter
      He created free will in heaven, the angel Lucifer abused it just like we did. Now the angels no longer have free will. The food chain was nonexistent before sin, everything ate plants. If you were talking about free will in the future heaven, we will still have it however we will see the consequence of our sins and we will no longer want to sin, nor will original sin still be with us.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:29 pm |
    • Believer

      ...
      Hitlers escape was if you had the right genes, of which you had no control over. We can control the escape that God gave us

      Yo.
      As I have said multiple times, it is not the not loving that condemns it is the breaking of the law. The loving him is the way out of the condemnation not the cause of it.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:33 pm |
    • GodPot

      "God is good. But he is also just, we broke his law. Every single person has sinned. He has provided an escape. We can take it, if we want too. Would an evil God provide a way to escape his just wrath?"

      That brought to mind an image of The Jigsaw Killer from Saw. By your logic it proves that he was good, since why would an evil sociopath provide a way to escape?... all we have to do is choose...

      Also, the concept of being born into sin is much like waking up on a bathroom floor chained to a toilet with a hacksaw in your hand. Freedom my a s s.

      February 13, 2012 at 7:35 pm |
    • Believer

      Quick question, with the choice God gives, and the escape he offers, where does mutilating your body come in? He does ask us to mutilate ourselves, and before you start quoting Matthew 5, he is not saying do this and be saved. He is saying how much more valuable heaven is compared to your eye.
      As for your example with the toilet, your getting there. That is the situation we have created for ourselves, and he has provided a way out of that situation. He has the key to unlock you and he is coming to unlock it, why stop him?

      February 14, 2012 at 1:25 am |
    • ....

      "where does mutilating your body come in? "

      LMAO – Duh....what do you all burning in hell for all eternity? LOL!

      February 14, 2012 at 10:23 am |
    • ....

      "The food chain was nonexistent before sin, everything ate plants. If you were talking about free will in the future heaven, we will still have it however we will see the consequence of our sins and we will no longer want to sin, nor will original sin still be with us."

      LMAO! LOL! Oh that is so funny I am laughing so hard my cheeks are hurting. LOL! That takes the cake on the most stupid post I've read on here. LOL!

      February 14, 2012 at 10:31 am |
    • Believer

      Way to misquote me. God does not ask us to mutilate ourselves to get to freedom. He gives us the key to break the chains. When we try and break the chains without him, that is when we mutilate ourselves aka hell.

      As for my post on the non existent food chain, I hold to it. If the world was perfect in the garden of eden, which I believe it was then logically there would be no food chain. The food chain appeared when sin entered the world. If you read the Bible you will find that the eating of meat occured after the flood which has never been disproven. It is not nearly as ridiculous as believing that all life came out of an organic soup, which is what evolution teaches.

      February 14, 2012 at 12:01 pm |
    • Yo!

      "As for my post on the non existent food chain, I hold to it. If the world was perfect in the garden of eden, which I believe it was then logically there would be no food chain. "

      LOL! Then God said, "Let the earth bring forth living creatures after their kind: cattle and creeping things and beasts [chayah] of the earth after their kind"; and it was so. And God made the beasts [chayah] of the earth after their kind, and the cattle after their kind, and everything that creeps on the ground after its kind; and God saw that it was good. (Genesis 1:24-25)

      The text itself does not say whether these animals are herbivores or carnivores. However, we can examine how the Hebrew word (chayah) is used in the rest of the Bible. Below is a table of all the verses that use the word chayah and whether the verse refers to herbivores or carnivores. The verses in which the eating habits of chayah is unclear from the context have not been included.

      Carnivore2

      Genesis 37:20-Genesis 37:33

      Leviticus 11:27-Leviticus 26:6

      Leviticus 26:22-Isaiah 43:20

      Ezekiel 5:17-Ezekiel 14:15

      Ezekiel 14:21-Ezekiel 29:5

      Ezekiel 32:4-Ezekiel 33:27

      Ezekiel 34:5-Ezekiel 34:8

      Ezekiel 34:25-Ezekiel 34:28

      Ezekiel 39:4-Ezekiel 39:17

      Hosea 2:12-Hosea 13:8

      Herbivore1-

      Exodus 23:11-Leviticus 11:2

      Numbers 35:3-Isaiah 40:16

      Conclusion

      An examination of the Hebrew word chayah indicates that in the vast majority of uses, the word refers to animals that eat flesh. It seems likely that the creation account of Genesis is referring specifically to the carnivores, especially since a prominent herbivore (cattle) is specifically mentioned in the same verse. If chayah were meant to refer to herbivores, cattle could be left out, since they would be included in the chayah term.

      February 14, 2012 at 1:36 pm |
    • Believer

      Chayah means wild beast, the word for cattle actually is livestock that was a mistranslation from hebrew, so if you read it again in hebrew you will find that it says God created all of the wild animals, and all of the domestic livestock. It never says what those animals ate, however God said you can eat of any tree in the garden (except that one...). So based on those two verses I believe that God created all of the animals, and they ate plants.

      February 14, 2012 at 5:59 pm |
    • GodPot

      @Believer – " It never says what those animals ate, however God said you can eat of any tree in the garden (except that one...). So based on those two verses I believe that God created all of the animals, and they ate plants."

      I see. So you are of the opinion that a scary liberal cabal sneaked back in time and buried all the fossils of carnivores that date back 400 million years? Either that or you "Believer" that it's all been faked? A big conspiracy? Or did God do it just to throw off the less faithful?

      February 14, 2012 at 10:55 pm |
    • Believer

      Here take a look at this article about dating methods,
      http://ldolphin.org/sewell/c14dating.html All dating methods rely on assumptions. And when the scientists use these methods they ask for the date that they want before they use the method. So much for a blind test.

      February 15, 2012 at 10:19 am |
    • GodPot

      "All dating methods rely on assumptions. And when the scientists use these methods they ask for the date that they want before they use the method. So much for a blind test."

      If this were true the first thing every "Believer" would have done is pop in their own number of 6000 years. I will accept that the current dating methods are not perfect and can only get within a few thousand years of the actual dates, but if you are going to Believe that carnivores didn't exist hundreds of millions of years ago as the fossil record shows then I don't know what else to say. The amount of physical evidence that proves you wrong is overwhelming. It would be like atheists asking for proof of your God and you showing up with Jesus walking down on a cloud and the atheist says "Nah, I don't believe you, you are somehow manipulating how I perceive the world because there is no way that could be happening right now."

      February 15, 2012 at 11:58 am |
    • Believer

      Quick question, if you believe that the layers took millions of years to form, how do you explain polystrate fossils? We know that layers, form quickly in the order that we see them by looking at Mt. St. Helen. All it takes is a huge catastrophe, maybe a flood?

      February 15, 2012 at 2:37 pm |
    • GodPot

      " if you believe that the layers took millions of years to form, how do you explain polystrate fossils? We know that layers, form quickly in the order that we see them by looking at Mt. St. Helen. All it takes is a huge catastrophe, maybe a flood?"

      I never even mentioned "layers" anywhere in my post as being used to determine the age of fossils. As for "polystrate fossils" here is something you may not know. " The word polystrate is not a standard geological term. This term is typically only found in creationist publications. In geology, such fossils are referred to as upright fossils, trunks, or trees. Brief periods of rapid sedimentation favor their formation. Upright fossils are typically found in layers a s sociated with an actively subsiding coastal plain or rift basin, or with the acc u mulation of volcanic material around a periodically erupting stratovolcano. Typically, this period of rapid sedimentation was followed by a period of time, decades to thousands of years long, characterized by very slow or no acc u mulation of sediments." – Journal of the Geological Society DiMichele, W.A., and H.J. Falcon-Lang, 2011, Pennsylvanian 'fossil forests' in growth position (T0 a s semblages): origin, taphonomic bias and palaeoecological insights.

      You are much like a student who arrives at class convinced they know more about the subject than the teacher so they never study, never listen to the lectures and get's angry and upset when they get an "F" on the test because the teacher did not accept "God did it" as an answer.

      February 15, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
    • Believer

      So you just agreed that the layers would have had to have been formed quickly after each other, which is what I said. The reason why I mentioned the layers is because they determined that the layers had to have been millions of years old before Darwin came along and also before dating methods were made. They then asked which layer the fossil was found in, basically how old the fossil was, before they dated the fossil with carbon/ uranium dating. So much for a blind test!

      February 16, 2012 at 10:25 am |
    • GodPot

      "They then asked which layer the fossil was found in, basically how old the fossil was, before they dated the fossil with carbon/ uranium dating."

      Soooo, you are saying that a long time ago the only way we had to estimate the age of fosils were the layers but because of the non-static nature of the planet they were not very accurate, so scientists (Willard Libby) developed radiocarbon dating in 1949 and demonstrated the accuracy of radiocarbon dating by accurately estimating the age of wood from a series of samples for which the age was known, including an ancient Egyptian royal barge of 1850 BC and was awarded the Nobel Prize in chemistry. And because of his work we do not have to rely on the "layers" as the only tool, though the "layers" are still used to determine general periods of our past.

      Your argument rests on the fact that no dating method is 100% accurate so if you want to continue believing that the date is not 400 million years since carnivores began walking the earth fine, but it would have to be an awful large margin of error to fit in with your 6000 year old biblical history. Large enough the walk one of your apparently vegetarian T-Rex's through...

      February 17, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85
Advertisement
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.