January 19th, 2012
05:27 PM ET

'Hate religion, love Jesus' video goes viral

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

(CNN) - With so many atheists coming out of the closet, it’s not difficult to imagine a video decrying religion racking up millions of hits on YouTube.

But a video along those lines has been viewed 15 million times and liked more than a quarter-million times since it was posted on January 10, featuring an enthusiastic young Christian from Washington state.

[youtube= http://youtu.be/1IAhDGYlpqY]

“What if I told you Jesus came to abolish religion?” 22-year-old Jefferson Bethke says in the video, reciting a spoken word poem he wrote. “What if I told you getting you to vote Republican really wasn’t his mission?”

“I mean if religion is so great, why has it started so many wars?” he says later. “Why does it build huge churches but fail to feed the poor?”

Bethke's video is emerging as a symbol for many young evangelical Christians who are calling themselves “followers of Jesus” rather than overtly identifying with institutional Christianity. Many of the country's fastest-growing churches are nondenominational.

“Religion is man-centered,” Bethke writes in a post accompanying his YouTube video. “Jesus is God-centered.”

In the video, Bethke talks about what he calls his own spiritual rebirth, saying he went from being a self-righteous religious person to an admittedly deeply broken believer.

The video has provoked an avalanche of response, including other YouTube videos, like "Why I hate religion but love Jesus, Muslim Version" and "Why I Dislike Your Poem, But Love God," which includes these lines:

I see where you’re coming from but there’s insanity in your vision
You overlook the fact that Christianity is religion
You’re like the van who claims to hate diets
Or astrophysicists who reject laws of science.

That response video has itself been viewed 390,000 times. Not bad.

Many religious bloggers echoed that video’s criticism on Bethke, alleging he’s trumpeting tenets of Christianity while purporting to blast organized religion. Critics called Bethke’s take on religion overly simplistic and dangerous.

“Anyone who does just a little digging on Bethke's YouTube channel or on Google will quickly learn that this young poet is a conservative Christian and member of the Mars Hill Church led by controversial pastor Mark Driscoll,” writes Patheos blogger Brian Kirk, a Missouri-based pastor. “All this seems to me an odd résumé for one who lambastes organized religion.”

Yet Kirk marvels at the national conversation that Bethke has provoked around deep questions:

Certainly one can agree or disagree with Bethke's take on religion but it's difficult not to admire the way he has stirred up those of us who may have been slumbering comfortably in our own faith without really thinking about why we do what we do. Some times the best way to wake up a sleeping giant is to poke it with a stick and Bethke has done just that.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Christianity

soundoff (3,716 Responses)
  1. Sharp

    I like this movement among the young. Organized churches are economic units & the preacher is out to show off with a bigger church than his/her fellows & have a comfortable income. The same preacher eventually sucks up to the richer members of the congregation unless he/she is exceptionally moral. These young people have rejected this form of worship because they are younger & more idealistic. I expect that they will seek each other out in Bible studies & informal fellowship. A cleaner & purer faith may well emerge. Swear by what the Lord said ONLY; & read it for yourself & ACT on it.

    January 21, 2012 at 1:18 pm |
    • Oh Yeah

      How long before this 'relationship' variety catches on enough to become as organized a religion as they are now targeting? This guy's kids could very well be posting their own videos in 20 years denouncing their old man's misguided beliefs. That's the way of Christianity: Always evolving.

      January 21, 2012 at 2:03 pm |
  2. Mary

    Admitted Jesus Freak, but I don't get why so many religions still believe in the literal interpretation of Timothy that woman should never teach...we are second class citizens..then again women can be quite evil....

    January 21, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
    • Sharp

      Everyone knows that your namesake, Mary Magdalene, was the leader of the women Apostles. She is the only one whose name was even remembered & she was called a who-re, falsely. (She is the patron saint of those falsely accused.) I blame that misogynist Paul.

      January 21, 2012 at 1:24 pm |
  3. Shawn Irwin

    Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful. Lucius Annaeus Seneca Roman Philosopher

    January 21, 2012 at 12:55 pm |
    • ReligionIs4Dolts

      Constantine didn't just "convert" to Christianity and make it the Roman State Religion for nothing.

      January 21, 2012 at 1:03 pm |
  4. Peachy Carnehan

    There are so many flawed and tired arguments about religion flying around in these comments. If people would only pause and think critically about what they believe and do a tiny bit of reading, we might get somewhere.

    Please add the following books to your 2012 reading list:

    "Letter to a Christian Nation" and "50 Reasons People Give for Believing in a God"

    Read those books and your thoughts are likely to be more clear and your words more coherent, no matter if you argue for or against the existence of God.


    January 21, 2012 at 12:48 pm |


    SONG NAME: "Sons of War"
    BY: Two Steps from Hell
    ALBUM: "Nemesis"

    January 21, 2012 at 12:46 pm |
  6. YapChong

    Albert Einstein: God is a Product of Human Weakness
    The word god is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weaknesses, the Bible a collection of honourable, but still primitive legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this.

    if this being is omnipotent, then every occurrence, including every human action, every human thought, and every human feeling and aspiration is also His work; how is it possible to think of holding men responsible for their deeds and thoughts before such an almighty Being? In giving out punishment and rewards He would to a certain extent be passing judgment on Himself. How can this be combined with the goodness and righteousness ascribed to Him?

    January 21, 2012 at 12:33 pm |
    • Sharp

      Free Will has been discussed many times by many religions, especially in the Judeo-Christian tradition. Congratulations, you have correctly identified the starting point. Now?

      January 21, 2012 at 12:59 pm |
    • ReligionIs4Dolts

      I am all-knowing, all-powerful God. I will create this angel named Lucifer, who I know in advance will turn against me, and who I know in advance will lead astray my future creation of man....Oh, there he went and made me angry, so now I have cast Lucifer out of Heaven.

      OK, so now I'm going to create man. I know in advance that man will be led astray by Lucifer, and yet even though I am all-powerful, I am powerless to stop Lucifer from leading man astray, so I am just going to go ahead and create man anyway. Oh, there man went and made me angry, so now I have to expel Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden......

      This story is TRULY HYSTERICAL!!!!

      January 21, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
    • ReligionIs4Dolts

      Oh yeah I forgot about the part where God told Abraham to lie with his wife Sarah's maidservant (Hagar) because his 90-sokmething-year-old wife couldn't have children. And the product of this ordained se-xual encounter was one Ishmael, who is considered the antecedent of the Arabic people, from which Islam was fabricated. An all-knowing God who commanded that this act be done once again proves to be an IDIOT!

      January 21, 2012 at 1:17 pm |
    • Teeby

      Dolts. Wow.. So you havent the slightest clue about love or god, yet you can jump quantum years and start talking about matters of creation of evil? Isnt that like walking into an advanced calculus class and laughing because theyre not using addition? You dont understand a single thing that you are talking about, you a mocking yourself

      January 21, 2012 at 6:36 pm |
  7. Shanna

    does anyone know a possible reason my posts may not be showing up?

    January 21, 2012 at 12:27 pm |
    • Helpful Hints

      Shanna, There is an automatic word filter on this site.

      Bad letter combinations / words to avoid if you want to get past the CNN automatic filter:
      Many, if not most, are buried within other words, so use your imagination.
      You can use dashes, spaces, or other characters to modify the "offending" letter combinations.
      ar-se.....as in ar-senic.
      co-ck.....as in co-ckatiel, co-ckatrice, co-ckleshell, co-ckles, etc.
      co-on.....as in rac-oon, coc-oon, etc.
      cu-m......as in doc-ument, accu-mulate, circu-mnavigate, circu-mstances, cu-mbersome, cuc-umber, etc.
      cu-nt.....as in Scu-ntthorpe, a city in the UK famous for having problems with filters...!
      ef-fing...as in ef-fing filter
      ft-w......as in soft-ware, delft-ware, swift-water, drift-wood, etc.
      ho-mo.....as in ho-mo sapiens or ho-mose-xual, ho-mogenous, etc.
      ho-rny....as in tho-rny, etc.
      hu-mp… as in th-ump, th-umper, th-umping
      jacka-ss...yet "ass" is allowed by itself.....
      ja-p......as in j-apanese, ja-pan, j-ape, etc.
      koo-ch....as in koo-chie koo..!
      o-rgy….as in po-rgy, zo-rgy, etc.
      pi-s......as in pi-stol, lapi-s, pi-ssed, therapi-st, etc.
      p-orn… as in p-ornography
      pr-ick....as in pri-ckling, pri-ckles, etc.
      ra-pe.....as in scra-pe, tra-peze, gr-ape, thera-peutic, sara-pe, etc.
      se-x......as in Ess-ex, s-exual, etc.
      sp-ic.....as in desp-icable, hosp-ice, consp-icuous, susp-icious, sp-icule, sp-ice, etc.
      sp-ook… as in sp-ooky, sp-ooked
      ti-t......as in const-itution, att-itude, ent-ities, alt-itude, beat-itude, etc.
      tw-at.....as in wristw-atch, nightw-atchman, etc.
      va-g......as in extrava-gant, va-gina, va-grant, va-gue, sava-ge, etc.
      who-re....as in who're you kidding / don't forget to put in that apostrophe!

      January 21, 2012 at 12:46 pm |
  8. galileo225

    Jesus was a liberal. He challenged the orhodoxy of the day and was killed by the conservatives of the day. Religion + Science = TRUTH...... Faith – Science = Myth

    January 21, 2012 at 12:26 pm |
  9. Prayer is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer causes small kids to get hit by buses when they aren't paying attention.
    Prayer takes people away from actually working on real solutions to their problems.
    Prayer wears out your clothes prematurely.
    Prayer contributes to global warming through excess CO2 emissions.
    Prayer fucks up your knees and your back.
    Prayer can cause heart attacks, especially among the elderly.
    Prayer reveals how stupid you are to the world.
    Prayer prevents you from getting badly needed exercise.
    Prayer makes you hoard cats.
    Prayer makes you crave the smell of kitty litter and leads you on to harder drugs.
    Prayer wastes time.

    January 21, 2012 at 11:55 am |
    • Herp


      January 21, 2012 at 12:23 pm |
  10. Reality

    And once again for the next YouTube presentation:

    Only for the "newbies":

    JC's family and friends had it right 2000 years ago ( Mark 3: 21 "And when his friends heard of it, they went out to lay hold on him: for they said, He is beside himself.")

    Said passage is one of the few judged to be authentic by most contemporary NT scholars. e.g. See Professor Ludemann's conclusion in his book, Jesus After 2000 Years, p. 24 and p. 694.

    Actually, Jesus was a bit "touched". After all he thought he spoke to Satan, thought he changed water into wine, thought he raised Lazarus from the dead etc. In today's world, said Jesus would be declared legally insane.

    Or did P, M, M, L and J simply make him into a first century magic-man via their epistles and gospels of semi-fiction? Most contemporary NT experts after thorough analyses of all the scriptures go with the latter magic-man conclusion with J's gospel being mostly fiction.

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

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

    January 21, 2012 at 11:27 am |
    • Rich in CO

      Because the odds of "dangerous" ideas espoused by a carpenter walking around, preaching in an occupied land peacefully overtaking the Roman Empire (the most powerful man-made force on the planet at the time) and shaping civilization, Western and beyond, are almost as remote as the odds of you forgoing your delusional confidence in your ability for rational thought or facts, giving him credit for being exactly who he said he was.

      Just throwing that out there.

      January 21, 2012 at 11:52 am |
    • Prayer is not healthy for children and other living things

      Prayer causes small kids to get hit by buses when they aren't paying attention.
      Prayer takes people away from actually working on real solutions to their problems.
      Prayer wears out your clothes prematurely.
      Prayer contributes to global warming through excess CO2 emissions.
      Prayer fucks up your knees and your back.
      Prayer can cause heart attacks, especially among the elderly.
      Prayer reveals how stupid you are to the world.
      Prayer exposes your backside to pervert priests.
      Prayer prevents you from getting badly needed exercise.
      Prayer makes you hoard cats.
      Prayer makes you crave the smell of kitty litter and leads you on to harder drugs.
      Prayer wastes time.

      January 21, 2012 at 11:54 am |
    • Reality

      Only for the "newbies":

      The Apostles' Creed 2011: (updated by yours truly and based on the studies of historians and theologians of the past 200 years)

      Should I believe in a god whose existence cannot be proven
      and said god if he/she/it exists resides in an unproven,
      human-created, spirit state of bliss called heaven??

      I believe there was a 1st century CE, Jewish, simple,
      preacher-man who was conceived by a Jewish carpenter
      named Joseph living in Nazareth and born of a young Jewish
      girl named Mary. (Some say he was a mamzer.)

      Jesus was summarily crucified for being a temple rabble-rouser by
      the Roman troops in Jerusalem serving under Pontius Pilate,

      He was buried in an unmarked grave and still lies
      a-mouldering in the ground somewhere outside of

      Said Jesus' story was embellished and "mythicized" by
      many semi-fiction writers. A descent into Hell, a bodily resurrection
      and ascension stories were promulgated to compete with the
      Caesar myths. Said stories were so popular that they
      grew into a religion known today as Catholicism/Christianity
      and featuring dark-age, daily wine to blood and bread to body rituals
      called the eucharistic sacrifice of the non-atoning Jesus.

      (references used are available upon request)

      January 21, 2012 at 2:56 pm |
  11. dkm

    a set of values, beliefs, and structure in a person's life in order to give them direction and a sense of right and wrong is fine, but organized religions are no more than large corporations, and like any large corporation are only focused on their bottom line... trying to control the public and extract as much money as they can from them by any means necessary... promoting fear, uncertainty, hate and a sense that they alone can offer salvation... for a price ( although they are very cleaver about getting to this hidden and unspoken cost...after all these hundreds of years they have perfected their craft well! )

    January 21, 2012 at 11:12 am |
    • Al

      Have you ever had a thought outside of the group's?

      January 21, 2012 at 11:18 am |
  12. Darren Malin

    There is no god. The very idea of a sky fairy is ridicules.

    January 21, 2012 at 11:03 am |
    • Atheists Can't Spell


      January 21, 2012 at 11:05 am |
    • patriarchy sucks

      patriarchy is more likely the thing they hate (causes trauma). patriarchy is before religions. i think they are attributing one to the other. misplaced anger.

      January 21, 2012 at 11:12 am |
    • A Speler

      yes wee can.
      I lub Jeebus. Halejulia !
      se ?

      January 21, 2012 at 11:16 am |
    • Teeby

      The very fabric and foundation of science is ridiculous. Its even crazier than a sky fairy becasue WE set the rules, and everything we reveal breaks all the rules. Particles communicating telepathically, ghosts, electrons traveling every possible path at the same time? Trust me homes. God is a lot easier to explain than what we already know..

      January 21, 2012 at 11:21 am |
  13. C&E


    January 21, 2012 at 10:53 am |
    • Observer

      Lawrence Krauss is a real smart guy.

      January 21, 2012 at 10:58 am |
    • Ethics?

      As a scientist I always judge things on empirical evidence and he always has women ages 19 to 23 around him, but I’ve never seen anything else, so as a scientist, my presumption is that whatever the problems were I would believe him over other people.” –

      That is Krauss defending Epstein-Invoking science for what again???

      January 21, 2012 at 11:06 am |
    • Observer

      Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain! Lawrence Krauss is a smart guy, really.

      January 21, 2012 at 11:14 am |
    • Globe

      Sadly beings have hijacked science to believe in whaterver they want to believe in!

      January 21, 2012 at 11:26 am |
    • TG

      Fifth grade science at best, and the apologist's logic is deeply flawed. Only a child or moron would be taken in by this.

      January 21, 2012 at 12:08 pm |
    • Joe Smith

      I love how the atheist is portrayed as not having sound argument and the religious guy is sooooo reasonable. Until of course he starts talking about earth forming in 7 days, blood reigning down, 7 headed creatures, burning rocks, visions of angels (that haven't been seen since except in a mold spot on someone's refrigerator). Wonder who made this video.

      January 21, 2012 at 12:32 pm |
  14. LouAZ

    Long-haired preachers come out every night
    To tell you what's wrong and what's right
    But when asked about something to eat
    They will answer in voices so sweet
    You will eat bye and bye,
    In that glorious land above the sky.
    Work and pray, live on hay,
    You'll get pie in the sky when you die.

    (Copied this someplace. Don't know author.)

    January 21, 2012 at 10:53 am |
  15. thevibes

    And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.

    5For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.

    6And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.

    7For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.

    8All these are the beginning of sorrows.

    9Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake.

    10And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.

    11And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.

    12And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.

    13But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.

    14And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.

    15When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)

    16Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:

    17Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house:

    18Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes.

    19And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!

    20But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day:

    21For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.

    22And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened.

    23Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not.

    24For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.

    25Behold, I have told you before.

    26Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not.

    27For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

    28For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.

    29Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:

    30And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

    31And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

    32Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh:

    33So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.

    34Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.

    35Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.

    36But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.

    37But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

    38For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark,

    39And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

    40Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.

    41Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left.

    42Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.

    43But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.

    44Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.

    45Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season?

    46Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing.

    47Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods.

    48But and if that evil servant shall say in his heart, My lord delayeth his coming;

    49And shall begin to smite his fellowservants, and to eat and drink with the drunken;

    50The lord of that servant shall come in a day when he looketh not for him, and in an hour that he is not aware of,

    51And shall cut him asunder, and appoint him his portion with the hypocrites: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

    January 21, 2012 at 10:52 am |
    • Snoot

      Did you once have a daughter named Carrie?

      January 21, 2012 at 11:06 am |
    • Reality

      Matt 24: 4-51 has been thoroughly analyzed by many contemporay NT scholars. Many have concluded that the passages are not historical. For example, see Professor JD Crossan conclusions in his book, The Historical Jesus and Professor Gerd Ludemann' conclusions in his book, Jesus Afterf 2000 Years, pp. 229-231.

      January 21, 2012 at 11:41 am |
  16. Nick

    It seems that once again people assume they know what they are talking about and their words are so far off that it is funny. Once I would like for them to say they have read the Bible, start to finish, and then share what they have learned about Christian belief. But as always it will be, "Don't confuse me with the truth/facts I have already made up my mind."

    January 21, 2012 at 10:38 am |
  17. VArime

    Any videos made by tools that has gone viral?
    so, why do tools make so much noise?

    January 21, 2012 at 10:33 am |
    • Teeby

      Youre doing it right now

      January 21, 2012 at 11:39 am |
  18. RightTurnClyde

    I hate to be the one to say this but the great majority of {believers] that I meet do not love Jesus and actually do not understand Jesus. They love the book, the fellowship, the music, the sense of community. Often they GET babysitting, private schooling and other forms of community help. But if you ask them to tell you what they BELIEVE they are confuse by the question. In fact, many just got a warm fuzzy feeling, went to an altar call and "bop" they are Christian. Well .. put your $10 in the envelope and by golly everybody will accept you as a Christian and you are in the club. Many have told me "I am not sure but I do it just in case" (huh?) So how many actually love Jesus? (and they hate you when you ask questions like this - especially preachers) I am a Christian but I am not religious because they do not want ME in their presence O(none of them do). I hate to say it this way - but calling a spade a spade.

    January 21, 2012 at 10:25 am |
    • ReligionIs4Dolts

      A smelly homeless person could be a Christian and might wish to attend church somewhere, but of course, if s/he isn't wearing nice enough clothes (and if s/he hasn't bathed recently enough) on Sunday morning, s/he usually gets asked to leave. Hypocrisy? Hmmmm....

      January 21, 2012 at 1:24 pm |
  19. chefdugan

    You go to church, any church, and you are an ignorant fool wanting someone else to tell you how to live your life. You believe all that claptrap in the Bible and you are even a greater fool.

    January 21, 2012 at 10:22 am |
    • natalie

      I totally agree. Religion is a tool of the establishment to keep the masses ignorant

      January 21, 2012 at 10:34 am |
    • 1 Corinthians 1:21

      For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe.

      January 21, 2012 at 10:35 am |
    • Teeby

      You show your ignorance. Church is a building for people to congregate and share. Nothing more. Do people go to football games to try and become the best fan poossible, and maybe even turn into one of the players? Thats hilarious. No, they go to enjoy the game. People go to church to enjoy the words in the air and the songs being sung. How is that so difficult to grasp? Its not a big mystery

      January 21, 2012 at 11:29 am |
  20. Dc mortimer

    Jesus said Peter you are my rock on which I shall build my church so I really dont know what this young man is talking about , a bit lost Im afraid .

    January 21, 2012 at 10:13 am |
    • chefdugan

      What Jesus meant, and any fool can see it, was that He thought Peter had rocks in his head. Which he probably did.

      January 21, 2012 at 10:23 am |
    • Brad

      I have to agree with that. Peter was a bit thick. I general there was an amazing transformation of this fisherman and the others from the painfully ordinary people they were into the Apostles. Through them the world was ultimately completely changed.

      January 21, 2012 at 10:33 am |
    • Last Call

      I'm afraid you are not getting the point of what he is saying. He is saying it's not about religion, which is man's attempt to reach God. It's about a personal relationship with Jesus, where Jesus reaches down to man and says you have access to eternal life by putting your trust in me. Religion complicates matters. Also Catholics love to take that small piece of scripture and take it out of context. Jesus is not saying to build a Vatican because Peter trusted in what he was saying. He was demonstrating that Peter's faith is the foundation.

      January 21, 2012 at 10:48 am |
    • Dave

      Let’s read the quote in context: Matthew 16:15-18
      “He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” And Jesus said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Barjona, because flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.”

      “this rock” is not referring to Peter himself. It is referring back to the other “this” in that same passage, which is the revelation Peter had concerning Jesus being the Christ.

      The church is not built on Peter but on Christ! The church is the Body of Christ and is entirely outside of religion.

      “which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church, which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.”
      -Ephesians 1:20-23

      January 21, 2012 at 12:07 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.