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Would Jesus support health care reform?
Jesus depicted healing a sick child.
June 28th, 2012
08:45 AM ET

Would Jesus support health care reform?

Editor’s note: This piece ran earlier this year, but we’re spotlighting it now because of Thursday’s health care decision from the Supreme Court. The story generated more than 3,000 comments, including these two:

David Nelson
It is sad that Jesus has been demoted to being a politician. Jesus plainly said "My Kingdom is not of this world." Movements to use Him to promote their agendas, whether they be on the Left or Right, are extremely suspect in the eyes of this Christian.

kateslate
Jesus would SO have been a democrat. He taught us to care for the sick...not to profit off illness. I don't know how Republicans can live with themselves and call themselves Christian.

What’s your take?

By John Blake, CNN

(CNN) - He was a healer, a provider of universal health care, a man of compassion who treated those with preexisting medical conditions.

We don’t know what Jesus thought about the individual mandate or buying broccoli. But we do know how the New Testament describes him. The Gospels are filled with stories of Jesus physically healing the most vulnerable and despised people in his society.

References to Jesus, of course, didn’t make into the recent U.S. Supreme Court’s hearings on the constitutionality of President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act. Yet there is a moral dimension to this epic legal debate:

How should the nation help its “least of these,” an estimated 50 million Americans who can’t afford health insurance, as well as those who could go broke or die because they can’t afford medical care?

Christians are as divided about this question as others. Many cite Jesus, but come up with completely different conclusions.

Trust God or government?

Tom Prichard, a Lutheran and president of the Minnesota Family Council, said it’s ultimately about faith.  Who do we trust – God or government?

He opposes “Obamacare” because he has more faith in the market and people, than government.

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

“Here Jesus’ words come to mind about not worrying and trusting God to meet our basic needs,” Prichard wrote in an online post warning about the dangers of “government run health care.” “Or if we believe it all depends on us, we’ll look to government.”

When reached at his Minnesota office,Prichard elaborated: He said the nation should empower families and individuals to make health-care decisions. If families can’t afford health insurance, private and public entities like churches and nonprofits should step in, he said.

“We all have the same goal,”Prichard said. “We want all people to have health care, even people who can’t afford it. I would argue that having the government be the primary vehicle for providing it is not going to get us to that goal. It’s going to make the situation worse.”

Carl Raschke, a religious studies professor at the University of Denver, evoked Jesus’ words about Rome and taxation.

Raschke cited the New Testament passage when Jesus, after being asked if Jews should pay taxes to Rome, said that people should "Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's, and unto God the things that are God's."

Jesus was against strictly political or economic solutions because he thought they were too easy when it comes to the real challenges of human life, Raschke said.

“Writing checks won’t solve social problems,” Raschke said. “One has to get involved. If we see someone in need, we just don’t throw a dollar at him or her. You get to know them, you offer yourself, and ask what you can do for them.”

Helping the Good Samaritans of our day

There are some Christians, though, who say that charity isn’t enough to solve the nation’s health care problems.

An estimated 32 million Americans could lose health insurance if “Obamacare” is struck down, including children who can stay on their parents’ insurance until they are 26 and seniors who get help paying for their drug prescriptions. Most observers say health care costs would continue to rise.

Follow the CNN Belief Blog on Twitter

Some people believe the health care situation in America would be scandalous to Jesus because he was a prophet concerned about social justice.

Steven Kraftchick, a religious scholar, said Jesus comes out of the tradition of Jewish prophets who preached that the health of a society could be measured by how well they took care of “its widows and orphans,” those who had the least power.

Kraftchick said there’s a famous story in the Gospel of Mark in which Jesus heals such a person. He was the man who called himself Legion. He might have been called homeless and mentally ill. The man roamed a graveyard, so tormented that even chains could not hold him and everyone feared him, Mark wrote.

Jesus healed the man not only physically, but socially as well, according to Mark. The man returned to his community with a sense of dignity, said Kraftchick, a professor at Emory University’s Candler School of Theology in Atlanta.

“A move toward universal health care would be fitting with the prophetic traditions,” Kraftchick said. “When you read the New Testament and look at the signs of the in-breaking of the Kingdom of God, it’s always connected to being physically healed.”

Yet Marcia Pally, an authority on evangelicals, said many evangelicals are wary of government doing the healing.  Their reasons go back centuries.

Many are the descendants of people who fled Europe because of religious persecution from countries and state churches. They fought a revolution against a government in England.  And they settled a frontier, where the virtue of self-reliance was critical, said Pally, author of “The New Evangelicals: Expanding the Vision of the Common Good.”

Suspicion of government is part of their historical and religious experience, said Pally, a professor at Fordham University and New York University.

Those attitudes, though, may be changing. Pally said she spent six years traveling across America to interview evangelicals. She discovered that a new generation of evangelists now believes that certain issues are too big and complex to be addressed by charity alone.

“Some note that charity is very good at the moment of emergency relief but it doesn’t change the underlying problem  unless structures that keep people poor, sick or deny their access to health insurance are changed,” she said.

No matter what the Supreme Court decides, the legal debate will continue. If more Americans go broke or die because they do not have health insurance, more Americans may ask, what would Jesus do?

But don’t expect any easy answers from the Bible, said Raschke, the religious studies professor at the University of Denver.

“People are always looking for support from the Bible for American political positions,” Rashke said. “Would Jesus be against abortion, or would he support a woman’s right to choose? It’s almost become a standard joke in the theological world that you quote Jesus in American politics to support your political views.

“The teachings of Jesus do not fit into the views of any political party."

- CNN Writer

Filed under: Christianity • Health care • Jesus • Politics

soundoff (5,234 Responses)
  1. :)

    In God We Trust

    June 28, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
    • Answer

      Begs to be asked.. which god?

      June 28, 2012 at 5:12 pm |
    • JWT

      I'd trust my bible to god, but i shall keep my morals intact.

      June 28, 2012 at 5:13 pm |
  2. Joe Luke

    What an absurdly stupid article to write in response to this decision. Just a ridiculous waste of space in the front page.

    June 28, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
  3. ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !

    WOULD MUHAMMED SUPPORT HEALTH REFORM?

    June 28, 2012 at 5:03 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      I don't know about Muhammed, but I know that Moohamed the cow of awesome would. 😛

      June 28, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
  4. KP

    Are you really searching for theology and scriptural history in a book of fiction (as told by the author himself)? don't mind me saying, but it is a no wonder that you read a book written by 1st century goat herders to figure out how to live your life.
    ---
    No one who wrote the Bible herded sheep. Although shepards show up in the New Testament in the Bible like in Luke's Gospel. Shepards were/are hard working and were considered humble and usually poor that is why they were the first to be told about the birth of Jesus. That is why the humble and the poor will always come first in the Kingdom of God even if they are presecuted and forgotton about in this life. The proud and the rich have a much harder time as the Gospel of Matthew says It is easier to fit a camel through an eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God. God Bless friend.

    June 28, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
    • Ooopsey Daisy

      Slight problem for you: by the standards of Jesus' time, you are VERY rich.

      Own a car? Maybe a house? A computer, big TV and lots of other electronics? When was the last time you missed meals for days on end?

      By the standards of Jesus' time, 95% of Christians are way too wealthy to make it into heaven.

      June 28, 2012 at 5:06 pm |
    • Answer

      Making up excuses is not explaining things.

      June 28, 2012 at 5:11 pm |
    • KP

      I acknowledge that I will have a harder time getting to heaven so that is why try to take up personal poverty to avoid material things and abundance and support the people I do with the money I earn. I only earn the money I do by the grace of God, it doesn't belong to me it belongs to God and me doing his will. God Bless friend.

      June 28, 2012 at 5:15 pm |
    • Answer

      @KP

      You aren't a friend so shut up. Your delusional praise of this god is laughable along with the other 3 billion of you other losers.

      June 28, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
  5. Bootyfunk

    jesus supported slavery. hardly one to hold up as an example of good ethics/morals.

    Luke 12:37-38
    37 "Blessed are those slaves whom the master will find on the alert when he comes; truly I say to you, that he will gird himself to serve, and have them recline at the table, and will come up and wait on them.
    38 "Whether he comes in the second watch, or even in the third, and finds them so, blessed are those slaves.”

    according to jesus, if slaves want any chance to get into heaven, they'd better obey their masters.

    June 28, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
    • Brampt

      Booty- your a slave yourself, a slave of sin, a slave of the govenments and a slave of your employer!

      June 28, 2012 at 5:05 pm |
    • KP

      You better go back to Church because this has nothing to do with slavery like you think it does. First it is a parable, second it is talking about watchfulness and not coveting earthly things and power which is probably why you did not add verse 47.

      June 28, 2012 at 5:10 pm |
    • ttwp

      You don't realize that Jesus is talking about himself in these verses. We are his slaves and He is our Master. When he comes the Master/King himself will serve the slaves...his followers...he will gird himself up as we recline at the table and he will come and wait on us. What a humble, selfless, and loving God.

      I would you suggest you humble yourself and seek Jesus so you to can recline it his table.

      June 28, 2012 at 5:19 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      wrong. you're making excuses. jesus was definitely talking about watchfulness - but he was using slavery as his example. the bible never says anything against slavery, only supports it, over and over. it shows the book was written by men that were subject to their time, not at all divinely inspired. stop making excuses for christianity. own up to the bad stuff in that dusty book.

      June 28, 2012 at 6:35 pm |
  6. n222s

    If you are assigned to a terrible doctor by the government would Jesus be okay with restricting access to better doctors? If you are 75 years old and need a valve replacement would Jesus be okay with denying a procedure? What about the man with the 200 lb tumor that had his leg amputated by the socialized medicine Vietnamese but helped ONLY when he came to the US. Why did he come to this terrible healthcare system to be helped? Why didn't the pig of a man stay in Viet Nam to suffer like a good little drone? Surely Jesus would have approved of his suffering for the good of the state.

    June 28, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
    • KP

      Jesus supported government legislation unless it was going to violate divine law made exlusively human good like liberty, family, marriage.

      June 28, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
  7. n222s

    And how would Christ have made healthcare free? Would He have, in effect, forced doctors and nurses to give of their time without compensation? Would He have destroyed the market that created the best healthcare in the world (maybe not the best delivery system but best healthcare) just to make things "fair"? Would He destroy a system used by the wealthy of socialized medicine world even though those same people force the poorest of their own countries to use their socialized system?

    June 28, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  8. n222s

    Oh for crying out loud, what B.S. All this speculation about WWJD. Ask yourself one simple question; if He would have supported Obamacare why didn't he cure everyone on Earth of every malady known to man? Any lib would have done so, why didn't He? I know I sound like an atheist or agnostic but no, I'm a Christian. We could ponder all day as to why he didn't cure everyone of everything. Or we could understand that mankind must decide for itself.

    June 28, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  9. Snow

    well, would jesus have chosen merge-sort or heap-sort? would jesus have chosen android or ios? answer these extremely important questions, damn you!

    June 28, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      VHS or Beta!

      June 28, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • A Dentist Invented the Electric Chair

      Jesus is to politics what 8-track is to quality sound systems: a bad design, and totally obsolete.

      June 28, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  10. PrimeNumber

    Jesus didn't say anything specific against abortion. But if he was God, he was completely safe since he could call upon the angels (the Roman guards mocked him, urging him to do just that) . But he declined and relinquished his safety. He was helpless and innocent. He was completely powerless against the thorns, whips, beatings, nails, and spear thrusts. I think Jesus would have identified with the unborn. But he would have forgiven and healed the aborting mother.

    June 28, 2012 at 3:16 pm |
    • AmphibiousSpaceTraveler

      I get the impression that you are one of those poor victims of Mel Gibson's extra-violent snuff movie.
      Anyone who saw that movie needs to see a psychiatrist.

      June 28, 2012 at 3:45 pm |
    • ME II

      "Anyone who saw that movie needs to see a psychiatrist."
      Because they saw it? Or, because they wanted to see it? ...just curious.

      June 28, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
    • AmphibiousSpaceTraveler

      Both.

      June 28, 2012 at 3:48 pm |
    • PrimeNumber

      @AmphibiousSpaceTraveler Oh cut it out, Amphibious. Don't you enjoy a good Hollywood bloodbath now and then? But speaking of movies didja see THe Da Vinci Code? Great movie. Dan Brown talks about how the early church left out lots of gospels. I was amazed at the extremely important Marian theology and scriptural history that Brown simply ignored. Just like he accused the early church of doing.

      June 28, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
    • AmphibiousSpaceTraveler

      So you admit you saw the movie? Aha!

      June 28, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • huh!

      Are you really searching for theology and scriptural history in a book of fiction (as told by the author himself)? don't mind me saying, but it is a no wonder that you read a book written by 1st century goat herders to figure out how to live your life.

      June 28, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      I'm not sure you know what a snuff film is.

      June 28, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
    • AmphibiousSpaceTraveler

      Yes, well, if you are unsure, then you could always ask, right? Did you see the movie too? Just curious.

      June 28, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      No I didn't see it but it wasn't a snuff film. Last I checked Jim Caviezel was still alive and well.

      June 28, 2012 at 4:20 pm |
    • AmphibiousSpaceTraveler

      What? Didn't you know that most so-called "snuff" films were staged?
      And I called it a snuff movie, but it is a re-enactment of a mythical torture and execution of some guy who probably didn't even exist, so perhaps I should have just used a different word, but the trauma for viewers is just like that of a snuff film, so I used "snuff". Sue me.
      Everyone I've ever met who saw the movie was traumatized by it and I guess the imagery was really graphic and deliberately overblown to get the maximum brainwashing impact on the schizoid brains of the viewers, because that's how they described it to me and I've seen after-effects especially in children.
      Anyone who took their kids to see that horrible propaganda movie should be charged with child-abuse.

      June 28, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      It couldn't have been more graphic than the other Mel Gibson movie Apocalypto.

      June 28, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
  11. Answer

    @Everyone who is a religious nut

    =====
    God knows all..– how do you know?
    =====

    Are there any gods out there who is stupid? A god who is an idiot? Explain your reasoning.

    June 28, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
    • Answer

      Explain also these other criterias...

      Does your god know his inception point? The time of it's birth?

      Does your god know his time of demise?

      How does your god know when your god "was always there"?

      June 28, 2012 at 3:12 pm |
  12. sam

    So it still comes back to god sacrificing himself to himself to seal up a loophole in rules he made.

    June 28, 2012 at 2:52 pm |
    • JohnnyC

      loophole? enjoy your free will lately? God's creatures have it. Because of how it is exercised, there is a need for redemption and atonement, and an example of how to do God's will.

      June 28, 2012 at 5:07 pm |
  13. Chuckles

    For whoever else needing a good Chuckle for today

    http://www.buzzfeed.com/daves4/people-moving-to-canada-because-of-obamacare

    June 28, 2012 at 2:46 pm |
  14. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things .

    June 28, 2012 at 2:39 pm |
    • dyslexic dog

      same old troll

      June 28, 2012 at 2:42 pm |
    • Jesus

      Prayer doesn’t not; you are such a LIAR. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs!

      June 28, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
    • just sayin

      Truth is never trolling. God bless

      June 28, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
  15. junior

    "Be a Saint. What else is there?"

    June 28, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
    • Batfat

      Rap.e the helpless, burn the faces off of women, punt babies off of bridges. What else?

      June 28, 2012 at 2:28 pm |
    • dyslexic dog

      go Mormon ... then you can be a God!

      June 28, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
    • ME II

      Once you go Mormon, you never go back... (even after death.)

      June 28, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
  16. Answer

    “The teachings of Jesus do not fit into the views of any political party."

    He got that right. Now let's see these religious retards stop using these idiotic statement of "what would jesus crap do.."

    June 28, 2012 at 2:24 pm |
  17. Bootyfunk

    not sure what jesus would do. he said some great things about love, but he also told slaves to obey their masters. kind of a coin flip.

    June 28, 2012 at 2:11 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      I've seen you pick this bone before. It seems like you are unfamiliar with the economic systems of the time. You rely on a visceral reaction to the word "slave" most probably in its connotation of "America slaves" of the 18th and 19th centuries. If you want to be serious, try to learn what the context of the statement means instead of simply using it to incite a response.

      June 28, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  18. Christians are stingy

    America is the richest country in the world. Christians make up at least 80% of the population. Many Christians insist that helping the poor is the responsibility of religion not the government and it should be completely voluntary. If even half of the Christians were only half as charitable or half as companionate as they like to pretend to be, government wouldn’t need to help because there wouldn’t be any poor left. They manage to support some charities; but, given number of needy people in America Christians mainly just pay lip service to the teachings of their Christ.

    June 28, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
    • Beat the kids

      If Christ were here today he would fist the butt holes of the poor until they would be able to poo money. What a miracle that would be. Jesus could do that, right? He has magical powers like that.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:07 pm |
    • junior

      Keep in mind. Many people may claim to be Christian but how many follow the teachings of Christ?

      June 28, 2012 at 2:09 pm |
    • dyslexic dog

      Christian charity is just Christian marketing ... religious groups never give anything without the chance to try and convert the people they help into their religion.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:11 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      exactly. where were the church voices in the health care debate? strangely silent...

      June 28, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
    • Snow

      The only think christian charity remimds me of is the episode of south park called "Starvin Marvin" where the christians are aptly seen raising the money not to help the poor but to "bring them to the load (pun!)"

      June 28, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
    • sally

      You are forgetting the POOR, ignorant people who identify as Christians. They don't have the means to help others, yet they are probably against it.

      June 28, 2012 at 5:32 pm |
  19. Larry

    Obamacare lives. Supreme Court decision.

    June 28, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
    • Answer

      Yep.

      Congrats to the US. Now let's see how much better you guys down there can improve your system as compared to ours. Our Canadian system isn't the best but we like it.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      as an american, i've been jealous of the canadian health care system for a long time. hopefully, this decision is a step toward socialized medicine.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:18 pm |
    • Snow

      Being in US and watching over the border, I agree that Canada did a great job with healthcare and has been able to successfully make it work. why is there so much debate about making our system half as good as that?

      June 28, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
    • Answer

      @Bootyfunk

      It's all in the manner of reforms that help it along.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:20 pm |
    • Chuckles

      Have you seen the Tumblr that's already up about righties tweeting about moving to Canada because Obamacare was passed? They want to leave this "commie" system and flee to Canada.....

      It's pretty hilarious

      June 28, 2012 at 2:24 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      So they want to leave because of a "socialist" healthcare system, and go to a country that has an even MORE "socialist" healthcare system. Actually, makes sense if you look at the other retarded things some of them think.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
    • Answer

      @Chuckles

      Really? I haven't caught up with the news yet apparently. Guess it's time we get our guns and blow them to Istanbul or something other. I don't want those nutjobs coming to my Canada.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
    • Chuckles

      @Hawaii

      I think they heard lefties saying it after Bush won in 08 and thought that was the obvious choice when they don't get their ways.

      @Answer
      You have guns?

      June 28, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
    • Answer

      @Chuckles

      Yeah.. it's a trickle down effect from being your neighbour.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:38 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @Answer

      On behalf of America, I'd like to apologize for the surprisingly large amount of ridiculous people, and their effects on everyone else.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
    • Chuckles

      @Answer

      I think thats the first time trickle down economics has ever actually worked..... Well be careful up there, it can really ruin a persons day.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:42 pm |
    • Chuckles

      If you want a good Chuckle

      http://www.buzzfeed.com/daves4/people-moving-to-canada-because-of-obamacare

      June 28, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
    • Answer

      @HawaiiGuest

      I already understand that there will always be idiots in this world. Everybody knows frankly..so no apologies needed.
      One thing I know and find funny though is that the term of being a crank is more prevalent in the United States.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:45 pm |
    • Really?

      @ Chuckles – "I think they heard lefties saying it after Bush won in 08."

      Bush won in 08? Wasn't eight years of having that guy at the wheel enough for you?

      June 28, 2012 at 2:48 pm |
    • Chuckles

      @Really

      Whoa is me and my embarrassment. Had Bush won a third term I might have actually done the sane thing and moved to Uganda, I would probably be safer there anyways. I meant 04 of course, but hey, who knows, maybe in a parallel universe, Bush won in 08 as a write in and in 2012 we're at war with China and Australia and backed by our allies North Korea and Chile in a bid to control the newly formed territory of Middle Eastfrica and to avenge our fallen Icelandic comrades.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
  20. WASP

    @HS: you're good at answering the questions you want and avoiding the ones you either can't answer or don't want to which is it?

    @HS: "defeated death, sits on the right hand of his father"
    1) how can an immortal being have any concept of death?
    2) hercules completed the same task, thus zues is real according to your line of thinking.
    3) if jesus/god/holy ghost are all the same being, then how can "he" sit on the right hand of something that doesn't have "hands" wouldn't "jesus" just absorb back into the whole of "god"?
    June 28, 2012 at 12:41 pm

    @HeavenSent
    "Ituri, so now you're a card carrying member of satan's camp because you're a whimp and want to take the easy way out in life."
    you think being an atheist is "the easy way"? hmp. we are attacked daily whenever a christian finds out or figures out we're not part of their little group.
    proof: "a card carrying member of satan's camp"
    your own words spit venom at atheists for being different and not buying into your flavor of life.
    June 28, 2012 at 12:33 pm

    (just incase you happen to miss these posts HS)

    June 28, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
    • I looked and there before me was a pale horse! Its rider was named Barry, and Walmart was following close behind him.

      Does anyone know where I can get one of those Satan cards that HeavenSent talks about when she says "a card carrying member of satan's camp"? Is there like a Satan-R-Us store? It would be a really cool thing to show to those pesky Mormons in polyester who interrupt your dinner. The look on their faces would be well worth the price.

      June 28, 2012 at 1:54 pm |
    • Answer

      Hey I ordered mine through those christian webpages. Of course they won't send me one unless I pay them.

      Seems that they want money for everything they spew and won't even give freebies to help their cause.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:11 pm |
    • dyslexic dog

      WASP ... you're awesome!

      June 28, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      Unfortunately HeavenSent has admitted to not actually reading through the posts of unbelievers. She also seems to just want to revel in self-righteousness, the thought of eternal suffering for people who don't agree with her, and generally just being a dumb bit.ch on these threads.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
    • catholic engineer

      How can a divine being know anything about death? By setting aside his divinity and taking on the human condition, including death. Plillipians 2:6 "Though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to."

      June 28, 2012 at 2:18 pm |
    • Answer

      @catholic engineer

      Pipe down loser.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
    • WASP

      @CE: you totally missed the point of that question. "how can an immortal being understand death?"
      meaning if "god" was always here, it never dies. thus it couldn't have a grasp on death if it can't die. kindof how when your a child you can't fly, but you try to imagine what it is like for the birds; however regardless of how much you attempt to imagine flight you can't understand it as a bird because you can't fly.........even as an adult humans fail to truly understand what it is like to fly like a bird because we can't fly, so how can "god" understand death and create a creature that does die if he can't die? the same goes for how does a being that has no contact with anything have emotions? there are children that have been secluded from the rest of the world that when they have to interact with people they act a lot like the description of how god acts.........psychology calls these unfortunate children "emotionally immature" due to their lack of experience with emotions.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @catholic engineer

      Also, as far as I'm concerned, even if the entire Jesus story is true, I have a few major issues, one of which being that it wasn't even a sacrifice, period.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
    • WASP

      @dog: thank you i try my best to be impartial and purely logical when it comes to my questions and responces.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
    • Answer

      @WASP

      The common thing with these religious people is that they tend to posturize their posi-t-ion by a-s-suming that they can speak for their god. They believe as a believer that they (and everyone who is a believer) can speak on their god's behalf.

      They believe innately that they do have authori-t-y to cite what their god's claims are. They know every a-b-i-l-i-t-y and power that their god has and can tell you exactly how their god is responding.

      These nuts need the final stab of h-u-m-i-l-i-t-y and say unto themselves that "frankly I don't know my god" and just call it a day.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
    • The Knight of God

      @WASP I'll answer you...

      @HS: "defeated death, sits on the right hand of his father"

      1) how can an immortal being have any concept of death? God knows all... so that's how an immortal being has a concept of death when they know everything.

      2) hercules completed the same task, thus zues is real according to your line of thinking. Not at all... the stories are vastly different in comparison

      3) if jesus/god/holy ghost are all the same being, then how can "he" sit on the right hand of something that doesn't have "hands" wouldn't "jesus" just absorb back into the whole of "god"? God is a Triune God, consisting of 3 Persons, The Father, The Son, and the Holy Ghost. God manifesting Himself as three Persons. think of a sheet of paper and slicing into 3 sheets with A B C on them to distinguish. Still one sheet of paper but three distinct pieces.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
    • Answer

      @Knight of God

      1) how can an immortal being have any concept of death? God knows all... so that's how an immortal being has a concept of death when they know everything.

      2) hercules completed the same task, thus zues is real according to your line of thinking. Not at all... the stories are vastly different in comparison

      3) if jesus/god/holy ghost are all the same being, then how can "he" sit on the right hand of something that doesn't have "hands" wouldn't "jesus" just absorb back into the whole of "god"? God is a Triune God, consisting of 3 Persons, The Father, The Son, and the Holy Ghost. God manifesting Himself as three Persons. think of a sheet of paper and slicing into 3 sheets with A B C on them to distinguish. Still one sheet of paper but three distinct pieces.

      -As per everyone who is religious. How do you know?

      God knows all..– how do you know? Go ask yourself are you just being an idiot and trying to rationalize your feelings about your religion? You people are seriously fvcked up.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
    • The Knight of God

      @Answer

      Do you think the creation would know everything about its creator? That would make me God then if that were teh case. That's simply common sense. But now here we go, you aren't willing to have a civil discussion but mock one's faith so that throws out any sort of argument you may have. These are common sense questions.

      June 28, 2012 at 2:54 pm |
    • dyslexic dog

      @Knight of God
      "God is a Triune God, consisting of 3 Persons, The Father, The Son, and the Holy Ghost. God manifesting Himself as three Persons. think of a sheet of paper and slicing into 3 sheets with A B C on them to distinguish. Still one sheet of paper but three distinct pieces."

      What world are you living in? This is the tripe that you believe in? a sheet of paper in 3 pieces with A, B, C ... and you're basing your life on this? I've seen episodes of Yo Gabba Gabba that make more sense!

      June 28, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
    • The Knight of God

      @Dyslexic dog

      Best physical example I could think of, the concept of the Trinity isn't easy but then as I said before one cannot understand everything about God... He's not something you can put under a microscope and see. Many things are taken by faith while others can be proven. But when it comes to God, God created science to explain our natural world.... everything outside of it, well science has its limits evidently. You are trying to push science beyond its intended means. Proof for God is easy to find but if you are trying to put God Himself under the microscope it won't happen lol I am sorry to say. What do you base your life around? Falliable logic of men? God's way is far more secure as opposed to men who do nothing but destroy each other.

      June 28, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @The Knight of God

      "But now here we go, you aren't willing to have a civil discussion but mock one's faith so that throws out any sort of argument you may have."
      So you don't answer his points because he hurt your feelings?

      June 28, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
    • The Knight of God

      @hawaiiguest

      I have answered his points :p quite easily as a matter of fact. That only thing that's sad is that people are hostile to the idea of God and expect to know everything about Him. Sorry but my human arrogance don't reach to that extent :p

      June 28, 2012 at 3:06 pm |
    • HawaiiGuest

      @The Knight of God

      You gave big fat non-answers. Sorry, but just asserting things and not actually backing any of it up doesn't make for an actual answer.

      June 28, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
    • ME II

      "I have answered his points :p quite easily as a matter of fact. That only thing that's sad is that people are hostile to the idea of God and expect to know everything about Him."

      I'm confused. If you answered his points, then why wouldn't he know everything he asked about?

      June 28, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
    • Snow

      "I have answered his points :p quite easily as a matter of fact"

      well, you did not answer anything. All you did is to take a cop-out. "we don't know how something happened? well, god done it!" "we don't know how something works? well, god done it!" That is in no sense or way a logical answer, nor is it based on common sense (maybe it is a common sense-less argument). But for any reasonable philosophical perspective, it is tripe.. try again.

      June 28, 2012 at 3:59 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Let's recalibrate and take another look at these questions. On their face they seem reasonable and genuine but like so many people WASP makes the mistake of trying to force spiritual concepts into physical realities. This error is, in fact induced by Biblical language that uses allegory and metaphor to draw shape to metaphysical realities. This is the basic problem in any dialogue between believers and non-believers. BUT, here is my answer to the questions:

      1) how can an immortal being have any concept of death?
      God came to us as Jesus. Both fully man yet fully God although he did not consider equality with God something to be grasped. In order for Jesus to complete his task, he became a man. He lived, loved, thought and felt as deeply as any man. When He took on the sin of the world, He experienced separation from God. This is the definition of sin, separation from God. The wages of that sin is death. Hence, as man, Jesus "took on" our death. This is actually the root of His triumph, that he took our sins and bore our iniquities.

      2) hercules completed the same task, thus zues is real according to your line of thinking.
      That's a clown question bro and you know it. The answer to the "which God?" question is this; The difference between every other religion and Christianity is that all others contain a God who demands to be loved; "Yet while we were sinners God loved us" is the tenet that differentiates Christianity and compels us to love of Him and of others.

      3) if jesus/god/holy ghost are all the same being, then how can "he" sit on the right hand of something that doesn't have "hands" wouldn't "jesus" just absorb back into the whole of "god"?
      I have a guy who works with me. He is my right hand man. This doesn't mean he sits at my right hand all day. It means he and I are about the same purpose. It's likely the same with Jesus who said "I know the will of my Father" You don't really think he "sits" by the "throne" of God do you? No wonder you're confused.

      June 28, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Bill Deacon,

      you make an interesting observation when you say "Biblical language ... uses allegory and metaphor to draw shape to metaphysical realities".

      I see the reasonableness in this statement and make no argument, (with the possible exception of the word "realities"). No doubt I've not read all your posts so I don't know to which sect you adhere, but how do you *know* which parts of the Bible are allegorical, and which parts should be taken literally?

      Different Christian traditions clearly differ in this regard. Catholics take a much more interpretative stance (particularly with the old testament) and (most) Evangelical fundamentalists take a very literal view.

      Who is right? If some Christians have the wrong interpretation, how can you *know* (except through your own faith) that any interpretation is accurate?

      June 28, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Hey GOPer. Thanks for the reply. As a point of reference I am Catholic. I can only answer for myself that as I read and meditate on scripture different meaning opens to me over time. Not only have I read the Bible as many state, I read it daily and it seems like a flower that continually blossoms and acts as a sort of mirror that I can examine myself with. I leave to others to argue "absolute meaning" which I think is futile since we ourselves are not absolute beings. The point being that the relationship to God is what is utmost to me, not whether my side "wins" or not. Perhaps the best way to see it is to imagine the first time you read something that held meaning to you and then came back at a point later when you had a different perspective and saw a newer meaning. The over arching aspect however, is God's unfailing love for man that he reveals to us.

      June 28, 2012 at 5:45 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Bill Deacon,

      I felt fairly certain that by your observations you were a Catholic, but did not want to assume so.

      I'm in complete agreement with you on the notion of "absolute meaning". Absolute truth is unknowable under any system of beliefs. Certainly there is much in the Bible that is inspirational, and while one could argue whether that is divinely or humanly inspired, such argument is at some point moot.

      Thanks for your reply.

      June 28, 2012 at 5:55 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.