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Where was God in Aurora massacre?
Twelve crosses comprise a makeshift memorial near the Aurora, Colorado, movie theater, scene of last week’s mass shooting
July 24th, 2012
02:13 PM ET

Where was God in Aurora massacre?

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

(CNN) - Where was God in Aurora?

It’s a fresh take on an age-old question: Why does God allow suffering, natural disasters or - if you believe in it - evil?

We put the question to Twitter on Tuesday and got some starkly different responses.

“In short, God was in complete control, exercising His will,” wrote @PastorRileyF, who leads a church in Bethune, Colorado.

That riled @TheTrivia Jockey, who tweeted, “If that was God's will, God is definitely not deserving of my worship.”

Watch: Survivor of massacre says he forgives gunman

@trentpayne also took issue with the Colorado pastor: "I'm going to respectfully disagree with you Pastor. God gives free will to man, but it wasn't his will that they die."

The back-and-forth provoked other believers to chime in on the theological issue of God’s sovereignty vs. human free will, with many Christians seeking to explain how a sovereign God could preside over seemingly senseless bloodshed.

“It is not God's will or want that people died in Aurora,” wrote @GospelBluesman 20m. "God allowed man's inhumanity to man, rather than intervene.”

The conversation and debate continued in the comments section of this post, with some insinuating that the massacre might be a kind of divine punishment, or at lease divine neglect:

Lenny
We as a country have been telling God to go away. We told him to get off our currency, get out of our schools, get out of our Pledge of Allegiance, take your Ten Commandments out of our courthouses, get those Bibles out of hotels and no graduation ceremonies in our churches. How can we expect God to give us his blessing and his protection if we demand that he leave us alone?

Jesse R
Liberals have made it impossible for God to be anywhere during the upbringing of a child. Can't have any religious connotations in schools, libraries, government offices, etc., etc. Young men (and women) are growing up with no real sense of right and wrong. ... We no longer have the right of religion, but rather the right from religion. Parents no longer have the ability to discipline their children. We are always looking for the excuses ... violent video games and movies, bad teachers and schools ... when we should be looking in the mirror. We as a society are the reasons these massacres happen. We have allowed our children to become social misfits that lead to the kind of carnage we have seen on several occasions since religion and God disappeared from what the Founding Fathers once said was a necessity of a successful democracy ... faith.

Lots of readers used religious takes on the shooting to challenge the whole idea of God:

Who invited me?
How do you know the people that were killed didn't go to hell?, and how exactly does any of this show there is a reason? Reason is obviously something that you have replaced with belief, and you threw out logic with it.

Kyle
"God doesn't exist, so he wasn't anywhere. Get over it. A man was evil, and he was evil because he was crazy.

Plenty of others said the shooting was the devil's work:

Harleyxx
Evil things like this happen because Satan is the god of this world ... for the time being. God will undo all the damage caused by Satan's rebellion and man's disobedience when the time is right. In the meantime we all experience trials and tribulation due to living in an ungodly world. That is why Jesus taught his followers the Lord's Prayer ... 'to pray for God's kingdom to come.'

What’s your take? Where was God in the Aurora massacre? Or do you feel that such tragedies are evidence for a godless universe?

Let us know in comments, and we’ll highlight the best ones.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: God • Violence

soundoff (10,690 Responses)
  1. Wayfaring Stranger

    Observer...........
    "If men strive, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart from her and yet no mischief follow: he shall be surely punished, according as the woman's husband will lay upon him;
    and he shall pay as the judges determine.
    And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life,
    eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot,
    burning for burning, wound for wound, stripe for stripe."
    Exodus 21:22-25 (KJV)

    July 25, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
    • Who invited me?

      here we are again...
      I can't think for myself,so here is a 2000 year old quote

      July 25, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      That has nothing to do with abortion, but with assault, Wayfart. If someone ELSE injures a woman and causes a miscarriage, that is a crime in some states under some conditions. Your verse says nothing about a woman deciding to end her own pregnancy at all.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
    • jbg757

      This is why the farce continues through the centuries. Spoken words of the delusional.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:37 pm |
    • Leo

      Tom, You post like an 8 year old bully... grow up!!

      Calling people names is for the playground!! Actually many children rise above you!!

      July 25, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
    • Wayfaring Stranger

      tom, tom, why would it be a crime in one instance but not a decision to murder in another? Life is life. If your mother decides today that she is tired of you and don't want you and kills you, are you saying that is ok too??

      July 25, 2012 at 4:39 pm |
    • jbg757

      Please read us the whole bible. We can't think.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
    • Observer

      Wayfaring,

      Pretty embarassing isn't it. No consolation for the poor woman for her loss, just the husband.

      As I stated, the Bible NEVER mentions abortion.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
    • Wayfaring Stranger

      Here is the truth of the matter:

      (1) If a man accidentally slays another (manslaughter), he can flee for refuge so that he can be protected from being killed: Ex 21:13, 28-32; Num 35:11-15, 22-28, 32; Deut 4:41-43; 19:1-10; Josh 20:1-9.

      (2) If a man intentionally slays another person (murder), then he should die for what he has done: Gen 4:9-12; 49:7; Ex 20:13; Deut 5:17; Rom 13:9; Ex 21:29-32; Num 35:16-22, 30-31; Deut 17:6; 21:1-9. Many more Scriptural passages could be cited.

      (3) Exodus 21:22-23 teaches that if a man accidentally injures a woman so that her child is born prematurely, then that man must pay a fine which will be determined by the judges. (Fines are paid as a "ransom for his life" (Ex 21:30), and this indicates how serious the matter is. Just because he is fined does not mean that the event was of little consequence.)

      (4) Exodus 21:22-23 also teaches that if "any mischief follow," then a more severe penalty must be meted out. What is the "mischief?" It is injury or death to the infant or to the mother. And what is the penalty? It is clearly stated in verses 23 and 24: "And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life. Burning for burning, wound for wound, stripe for stripe."—Exodus 21:23-24.

      (5) Thus, if a man accidentally causes a premature birth, then he shall pay a fine; but if it then results in crippling, or death, the man is to receive in kind. And we are here only speaking about accidental abortions.

      (6) Although the concepts of accidental manslaughter and premeditated (preplanned) murder are both in the Bible (see "1" and "2," above), and the concept of accidental, unexpected and unplanned abortion of a baby is given once in the Bible (Ex 21:22-24),—yet the concept of intentional, preplanned abortion is to be found nowhere in the Holy Scriptures. The very idea of intentionally killing an unborn child—or even worse, killing them by the hundreds and thousands,—is totally foreign to the lives of God's people in the Bible, and so it is never mentioned. Some events are so terrible that they go beyond the simple accidental slaying of a person, or even the premeditated slaying of a human. Such is the case of modern on-demand abortion as requested by mothers and as carried out by certain physicians, hospitals and clinics.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Go fvck yourself, Leo.

      No, Way, it is not a crime in both cases. If it were, then wouldn't your perfect bible have made that clear? It says nothing about a woman choosing to end a pregnancy, only about someone ELSE taking that choice away from her by force.

      Apparently, you missed that.

      As for killing children, your god did quite a lot of that.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      All of the passage you quoted, and not one mentions a woman choosing to end her own pregnancy.

      And you claim that's because it is so horrible it couldn't be described?

      Oh, please. The bible is full of graphic descriptions of all sorts of gore and death.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
    • Wayfaring Stranger

      The bible does mention abortion, it is called sacrificing your children to the god of self! And it was forbidden. People who abort their children are selfish and don't want to deal with them or their problems. GOD OF SELF!

      July 25, 2012 at 4:46 pm |
    • Observer

      Wayfaring,

      Actions speak louder than words, especially when there are NONE.

      The Bible is full of commands from God to kill women. NEVER ONCE does God give a rip if the woman to be killed is pregnant or not.

      Read the Bible. Don't just fantasize about what you WANT it to say.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:48 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      While modern technology is quite new in historical terms, the practice of abortion and menstrual "regulation" is ancient. Traditional methods have been handed down for hundreds of generations and herbal and other methods have roots in the distant past. It should be noted that many ancient and medieval methods and preparations are extremely risky and many are not at all effective, so experimentation is quite unwise.

      We know abortion was practiced in biblical times from the passage in Numbers (note 1) where alleged infidelity is tested by giving an abortifacient potion to an accused pregnant woman. The "bitter water" used to "bring on the curse" may have been quinine or several of other herbal and natural concoctions that are considered emmagogues, or drugs that bring on menstruation.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:49 pm |
    • Wayfaring Stranger

      "Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying: "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations." (Jeremiah 1:4-5).

      "What then shall I do when God rises up? When He punishes, how shall I answer Him? Did not He who made me in the womb make them? Did not the same One fashion us in the womb?" (Job 31:14-15)

      "For You formed my inward parts; you covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well." (Psalm 139:13-14)

      Luke 1:15 states that John the Baptist will be "filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother's womb", which means that the baby in the womb has a soul for the Holy Spirit to fill.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:49 pm |
    • Who invited me?

      Wayfaring Strangler.
      Looks like Tom has got you on the ropes... bob and weave....What you've run out of 2000 year old quotes.oh no...then you're dead meat dude....so sorry....
      The final bell is about to ring .....

      July 25, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Where does the bible describe sacrificing 'children' before they are born, Way?

      There are no "children" in an abortion; there is an embryo or fetus.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:51 pm |
    • Wayfaring Stranger

      They sacrificed their sons and their daughters to the demons; they poured out innocent blood, the blood of their sons and daughters, whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan, and the land was polluted with blood.

      Psalm 106:37-38 ESV

      July 25, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Way, you can post all the bible quotes you wish, but none of them mention abortion as being a sin.

      Now, are you going to stop with this deflection, and discuss the topic of the article?

      July 25, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
    • Who invited you?

      Don't worry Stranger about the multiple usernames that support one another. Keep with what you think is correct.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
    • Observer

      Wayfarer,

      Not only does God NEVER give a rip about whether the women he wants killed are pregnant, the Bible says that at one time God torturously murdered every pregnant woman, child, baby and fetus on the face of the earth.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
    • Wayfaring Stranger

      Answer: Numbers 5:11-31 describes an unusual procedure a husband could use to determine if his wife had been unfaithful to him. Essentially, the husband and wife would come to the priest, the priest would then create a concoction of unpleasant ingredients, and then the wife would have to drink the concoction. If the wife was guilty of adultery, she would get sick and her belly would swell. If the wife was innocent, God would protect her from the effects of the concoction. There was nothing magical about the concoction. It was entirely a matter of God using the result to demonstrate whether a woman was innocent or guilty. So, in summary, Numbers 5:11-31 affirms the truth of Numbers 32:23, "be sure your sin will find you out."

      Some propose that Numbers 5:11-31 refers to God causing an abortion. This is clearly not what the passage is talking about. Pregnancy is nowhere mentioned, or even hinted at, in the text. The only thing that even sounds like pregnancy is the guilty wife’s stomach becoming bloated, but even in that instance, it has nothing to do with pregnancy. Further, the passage does not say that drinking the concoction would cause an abortion/miscarriage. While drinking a poisonous mixture of ingredients could very well cause a miscarriage, that is not what this text is speaking of.

      If a wife was found guilty, the punishment was death (Leviticus 20:10). If the wife was found innocent, she would be “cleared of guilt” and “able to have children” (Numbers 11:28). So, again, Numbers 5:11-31 does not refer to abortion in any sense. Rather, it is describing a method that God allowed to be used to determine if a wife had committed adultery against her husband.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
    • Get Real

      ""Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying:"

      Thinking of these old Hebrews communing with the LORD always brings to my mind the image of Johnny Carson as Karnak, with that magic envelope pressed to his forehead! .... or the car salesman who has to "call" his "manager" for approval of his "incredible deal" that he's going to make for you.

      July 25, 2012 at 5:02 pm |
    • Observer

      Wayfaring,

      More incredible nonsense from Leviticus which seems to specialize in nonsense.

      So we are to kill a women based on the results of her drinking some ridiculous potion? Mindless.

      July 25, 2012 at 5:03 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Oh, brother. And you talk about atheists 'misinterpreting scripture'.

      Wayfarer, quite frankly, I wouldn't care even if the bible did say abortion was a sin (it doesn't). It is legal and it's a choice. If you don't approve, don't ever have one, and if you're male, make sure you never impregnate a woman unintentionally.

      July 25, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
    • Get Real

      You've gotten fied up enough today Tom sweety. Just calm down, just sayin.

      July 25, 2012 at 5:34 pm |
    • Get Real

      ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^

      different @Get Real here...

      July 25, 2012 at 6:45 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      How would you know? There is a major resemblance.

      July 25, 2012 at 7:18 pm |
    • Get Real

      Tom, Tom,

      Huh?

      I did the Karnak one, but I never call anyone "sweety" and doubt that I have ever said, "just sayin".

      July 25, 2012 at 7:23 pm |
  2. Mark

    This all silly and stupid. Crazy 'god' people is why I lock my doors at night. Get a life. There is no gawd any more than their is a Zeus, Thor, Korean Jesus, Tooth Fairy, Easter Rabbit, Great Pumpkin, Apollo, Zu, etc., etc., etc.

    July 25, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
    • t3chn0ph0b3

      You have offended Gozer.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
    • Wayfaring Stranger

      Then why you hang out on the religion blog? Fighting a ghost?

      July 25, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
    • Bible Clown©

      Look out, they will call you "possessed" and shoot you.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
    • sam

      He will come in one of the pre-chosen forms. During the rectification of the Vuldrini, the traveler came as a large and moving Torg! Then, during the third reconciliation of the last of the McKetrick supplicants, they chose a new form for him: that of a giant Slor! Many Shuvs and Zuuls knew what it was to be roasted in the depths of the Slor that day, I can tell you!

      July 25, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
  3. highplainsparson

    Click on my name above for a more thorough explanation on my own blog. I am the one they quoted me in this CNN blog post: '“In short, God was in complete control, exercising His will,” wrote @PastorRileyF, who leads a church in Bethune, Colorado.'

    July 25, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
    • Bible Clown©

      Right, if you said that I don't need another sample of your wit. God was nowhere.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
  4. vingng

    If you ask where was God, then the opposite needs to be asked. Where were you when God called you to obey him and follow Christ teachings. America kicked God out of schools, out of government, out of their homes. Now you are asking where is God when America said we do not want God?

    July 25, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
    • Who invited me?

      When did anyone kick god out of schools, government or homes?

      July 25, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
    • jbg757

      We do not need god Only hard work and rational thinking gets it done. Not dreams of the delusional.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
    • Bible Clown©

      " Where were you when God called you to obey him and follow Christ teachings." He never called, but his friends told me I wasn't good enough for Him.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
  5. Mike

    Ok, I posted this before and got CRUSHED. I figured I would try again to see if I really was an insensitive idiot or if I could explain myself better...

    My answer: Because none of this is THAT bad. (Bear with me, please)

    I believe in the concept of God the Father. If God is the father, then we are the children.

    When you are a child, your concept of pain, tragedy, and inequity are skewed. How many times have we witnessed a child scream bloody murder in a Walmart because they weren't allowed to buy the new toy they wanted. At that moment, through that extremely limited and narrow optic, THAT is the worst possible thing that could ever happen to them. When we grow up, we gain slightly more perspective and understand that what seemed devastating was actually trivial.

    The same will be true as we mature in God's kingdom. Once we leave this world and all of its near sightedness, we will have the opportunity to realize that what seemed like a travesty worthy of questioning our creator for turned out to be no more important than a toy on the shelf at Walmart.

    July 25, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      No need to be crushed Mike. By an eternal perspective you are correct. Under the sovereignty of a loving, forgiving God, you are correct.

      That doesn't mean that emotionally charged people who cling to this mortal coil won't demonize you for the statement however.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
    • AllYourBase

      Holy cr*p you are actually trying to compare the shooting of 70 people, including the death of 12 of them, to a child not getting a toy they want? It's comments like these that make me have a hard time with the religion I was brought up in. It's morons like this and the stupid things they say that scares me. I'm starting to wonder if every traditionally religious person actually has to have a below average IQ. The level of stupidity is actually frightening.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:37 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      See?

      July 25, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
    • just sayin

      Another religo moron.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
    • HappyMadison

      Ok Mike, than let me ask you this: If something like murder isn't really significant in the grand-scheme of God's design, than why would he have made "Though Shalt Not Murder" one of the 10 commandments?

      July 25, 2012 at 4:41 pm |
    • AllYourBase

      Yeah Bill- I see too. Just how sad this all is. I used to be religious. Now I find it hard to even imagine how that was possible, given all the stupid, hypocritical, and completely crazy things "religious" people say and do.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
    • Alpa Chino

      Here's Bill being a smug bitch again like always.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
    • Bible Clown©

      " I figured I would try again to see if I really was an insensitive idiot or if I could explain myself better..."
      Sure, you said you'd tell the child's mom that it all happened for the best in this, the best of all possible worlds, and that it didn't hurt much and now she's in a better place. There's no way to sugar-coat that. I can't do better than "insensitive idiot." Her child is dead in a pool of blood because she went to the movies, and you call it a "travesty" for her to grieve and compare her to a spoiled child wanting a toy? How DARE she question why God, who I am being assured saved a lot of other people, didn't bother to save her child?

      July 25, 2012 at 4:45 pm |
    • Humanitee

      So you are telling me that I have to wait until I die before I can explain this horrible tragedy? What a terrible design!

      July 25, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
    • Hogan's Goat

      I believe you and Bill would make good Catholic priests or Pennsylvania coaches: "Oh shut up, when you are in heaven you'll say it wasn't so bad. Just bear with me, grunt grunt grunt." Oh, the ignorant may demonize you, just like they did Coach Sandusky, but you can just tell them not to act like spoiled children.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:48 pm |
  6. Humanitee

    SORRY God and I were hanging out and I told him to put his pager on silent because we were in one of his places of worship and I thought it was disrespectful. You would not believe how many pages he gets. You would think he has a secretary but the turnover rate is so high no one in heaven wants the job. Its almost to the point that I'm just ready to throw in the towel even though we've had an on and off relationship for 29 years. Anyways, that should settle it. I apologize for not letting everyone know sooner.

    July 25, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
  7. Lynn

    God says in His word "Thou Shalt Not Kill." Why is it whenever humans decide to exercise the free will God has given them, they wonder where God is? God did not want this, and the person who committed this act of murder did exactly what God says He does not want us to do. God was there from the beginning giving us His word and His commandments so that we might live well, with peace and prosperity. If you really look at what God has said in His commandments, each one is for our good and benefit, and when we do not listen, tragedies like this occur. God be with these precious families.

    July 25, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
  8. Gohek

    I hate when topics like this come up. On one hand, you have the atheists claiming there's no god and acting like religion is a fairy tale. On the other hand, you have the religious fools claiming there is a god, and acting as if they know it all when they don't even read the bible. Guess what, there's this thing called an opinion, as for atheists, show me where the first atom came from for the big bang. You believe in science hmm? The cause and effect law? As for religious ones, explain where god originated? You believe in the great creator, and everything has an origin, where is his? If neither can answer, atheists can not look down on religious ones and vice versa. (And the only religion I've seen that practices what they preach are those Jehovah Witnesses)

    July 25, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
    • jbg757

      We can explain where religion came from and also it characters – from the minds of the delusional. Atoms exist but we don't quite know how the thing all got started because of our comparatively limited intelligence.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
    • Mike

      So if we don't have the intelligence to find the origin of our creation why do you presume we have enough intelligence to disprove the existence of God? Until we know, for certain, where we came from I believe that no option should be discarded.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:44 pm |
    • fintastic

      Show me one single shred of evidence that god exsists.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:45 pm |
  9. Lance

    It is my belief that God wasn't anywhere on that day, nor any day. The fact is that a man, acting on his own will, decided to kill others. It wasn't because he didn't have faith, or that the devil took him. None of those things exist. We, as a people, regardless of nationality, will not prosper until we move past the concept of an almighty creator and judge. Every man and woman is in control of his or her own destiny, always have and always will. Also, on what another member stated earlier, just because we have removed religion from schools and such doesn't mean that children aren't being taught the right and wrongs of this world. You can have morality without religion.

    July 25, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
    • TrueBlue42

      Hear hear, Lance

      July 25, 2012 at 4:37 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Please explain how we can have morality without religion?

      July 25, 2012 at 4:40 pm |
    • HappyMadison

      @Bill – how about you read up on it yourself. There's a whole article here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution_of_morality

      I know reading and science comprehension can be tough for people who think they have all the answers, but you should give it a try.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:45 pm |
  10. jbg757

    He was in the same place he was during 9/11, during the Holocaust, during 1,000 aviation disasters, and during the 200 or so mass murders in this country. He was watching a new movie. I hope this answers the question.

    July 25, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
    • KCfan

      Correct, same place. Saving the thousands that could have been killed during 9/11, the holocost, the millions of flights that have landed safely, and billions of accidents that are barely avoided on the roads. He doesn't control anyone.
      Sometimes I wish he didn't give some people the right to make choices.......

      July 25, 2012 at 4:47 pm |
  11. KCfan

    God gives free will. Not surprised seeing so many idiotic responses on CNN.com. If God made life perfect for everyone, we would have all won the lottery and never attended a funeral.

    July 25, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
    • jbg757

      See him lately?

      July 25, 2012 at 4:31 pm |
    • KCfan

      Not in person yet, but we talk. You can be part of our conversation tonight if you wish...

      July 25, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
    • HappyMadison

      More free will talk, eh?

      Let's assume there is a God and he does have a will. If man has free will he can do whatever he wants without intervention from God, right? What if man's will conflicts with Gods? 1) Does God step aside and change his will depending on what man does? 2) Or does God overpower man's will? If the answer is 1 than God is not in control – man is. If the answer is 2 than man does not have free will.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:49 pm |
  12. R. A. Yarmey

    The right-wing-religion idea that the Aurora tragedy is merely "god" throwing a hissy fit because we allegedly have been mean to him is absurd on its face. Obviously, the victims who threw themselves atop other potential victims in order to save them represent the best in what is left of humanity. Moreover, the idea that a creator of this marvelously complex, wondrous, vast and "bigger-then-humanity' universe behaves per the same petty emotional wiles as we do, including revenge, is as internally contradictory an argument as one could construct. Can't we just grow up a bit and understand tragedies such as Aurora for what they are and seek to prevent them...rather than invoking brainless theology?

    July 25, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
  13. Daniela

    While this is just about the most painful type of tragedy out there, I do believe that when it is your time to go, "it is your time to go". God has a plan for each and every one of us. He knows when we will be returning to him and while it may not make sense to loved ones who are left behind, he calls us back for a reason. The evil in this world has been around since the beginning of time and is something that we cannot even begin to wrap our minds around. Tragedies occur every day -whether it be from a new diagnosis of a terminal disease, a life changing injury, weather related disasters, accidents, or pure evil -they are all out of our control and we cannot stand by and let God take the blame for this. He has a better plan and place for us after this world and while it is impossible for us to understand his reasons, we need to trust that he is in control and is taking care of our loved ones. God Bless all who are suffering from this tragedy and any other pain that this life has caused.

    July 25, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
    • Question_it

      "When it's your time to go, it's your time to go." "God has a plan for each and every one of us." Wow, do you hear yourself? It was just the victims time to go...per god's plan. Holmes was just carrying out god's plan. Wow!

      July 25, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
  14. dave

    god was in africa giving AIDS to african babies, the usual

    July 25, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  15. Mike Thurber

    The same as a flea pondering why humans use forks. . . Don't even attempt to understand God's Will. That answer seems to tie together the faithful, those who choose not to believe, and those who are agnostic.

    July 25, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
    • fintastic

      Why waste your time attempting to understand something that doesn't exsist?

      There is not one single shred of evidence that god exsists.......... you're living in a fantasy land if you think god is real.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:53 pm |
  16. Sandra Anderson

    This was a very devastating tragedy that happened on the day of my oldest sisters bithday, July 20. I truly felt sorrow for these persons that lost their lives in this way. So many people all over the world are dying in trajic ways which is .beyond our control. Calamities will continue to come untill the end of this world has come. God will be glorified in the midst of it all.I am a christian of the Church of God In Christ and we are knowledgeable of these kind of happenings in life. Just be prepared for the life after this life on earth is over. Our last words are important to us when departing.

    July 25, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  17. Bible Clown©

    Please stop saying that God let this happen because not enough people pray. There are about a hundred times more people praying just in the USA today than there were in the whole world back when God was supposedly doing miracles right and left, so that's not even logical.

    July 25, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  18. Thomas

    How can we judge this as an evil act if there is no determining standard of good or evil? If we are all just primordial slime facing no eternal judgment, then our actions here can neither be good or evil, they are just actions. Because without a perfect standard of good we can not say anything is evil, it is just an action. This is seemingly the one question the atheist can not answer. Without an eternal, perfect standard of good, who determines what is good or evil? That answer would be only the strong, well, in that movie theatre Holmes was the strongest, and he determined in his mind that what he was doing was good or justified, without a perfect standard of good to judge his actions against, who is the atheist to say that he is wrong?

    July 25, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
    • *facepalm*

      If you can't see how we, as a society, can come up with a consensus on morality without some great Universal Standard or morality, then perhaps you should trying thinking a wee bit harder.

      Since you're complaining about moral relativism, then I sure hope you aren't a Christian, because then you would necesarily have to think that either 1) stoning disobedient children and rape victims is moral or that 2) your own god is a moral relativist.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:38 pm |
  19. Guest11

    "god is a concept of how we measure our pain"

    Oh, now I understand EVERYTHING!

    July 25, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  20. .

    11 And it shall come to pass that the lofty looks of man shall be humbled, and the haughtiness of men shall be bowed down, and the Lord alone shall be exalted in that day.
    12 For the day of the Lord of Hosts soon cometh upon all nations, yea, upon every one; yea, upon the proud and lofty, and upon every one who is lifted up, and he shall be brought low. (Book of Mormon, 2 Nephi, Chapter 12)

    July 25, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
    • t3chn0ph0b3

      Unless you're considering the poor unfortunates who got their heads blown off as the ones who are being "brought low," your quotes have nothing to do with the article.

      July 25, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
    • fintastic

      Babble quote bot

      July 25, 2012 at 5:02 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.