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October 30th, 2012
05:33 AM ET

Belief Blog's Morning Speed Read for Tuesday, October 30

By Arielle Hawkins , CNN

Here's the Belief Blog’s morning rundown of the top faith-angle stories from around the United States and around the world. Click the headlines for the full stories.

From the Blog:

CNN: Ralph Reed mobilizing evangelicals in Ohio
Conservative Christian activist Ralph Reed is marshalling his forces in Ohio as the battleground state takes center stage in final week of the presidential race. The Faith and Freedom Coalition, the Atlanta-based organization Reed launched in 2009 to mobilize voters of faith around the country, is placing more than one million voter guides in 5,300 Ohio churches and plans to complete the effort on the final Sunday before Election Day.

CNN: The Undecided: Radical for Jesus, dubious of Romney
With Bible verses painted on the walls of his living room and with an unshakable belief that hell is for real, there's no question that Rob Seyler is a devout evangelical Christian. He is also a renegade. Tucked into his well-thumbed Bible, the spine held together with silver duct tape, is a picture of Marilyn Manson in full goth makeup. Seyler, a high school Bible teacher, says the metal singer's writings shed light into the secret world of suffering teens.

Tweet of the Day:

Enlightening Reads:

The Jerusalem Post: ‘Wings of the Dove’ brings Ethiopia’s Jews to Israel
“I have waited for this happy moment for eight years,” says Fasil Yehunye as he helps his family pack their meager belongings in their crowded one-room abode just prior to emigrating from Gondar, Ethiopia, to Israel. Yehunye was one of 237 Jews who landed Monday morning in Tel Aviv on a special charter flight from Addis Ababa, part of an operation called “Wings of the Dove,” billed as finally bringing to Israel the very last remnant of the Jews in Ethiopia

Religion News Service: Muslims back Obama, but by smaller margin than in 2008
Nearly nine in 10 Muslim American voters pulled the lever for the Democratic candidate in the last two presidential elections, partly because of Republican policies and rhetoric that many considered anti-Muslim. In 2008, they also thought President Obama would usher in an era in which Muslims would be more accepted at home, and relations between America and the Islamic world would see improvement. But this year, Muslim American support for President Obama shows signs of waning, which could be enough to affect the 2012 election in key swing states where a few thousand votes could have a big impact.

The Guardian: How families on both sides of the law face tough choices in Somalia
When Ali Faras's 21-year-old son was murdered, the local court gave him three options: to pardon the killer, demand blood money from the man's family or call for his execution. If he decided the latter, he would have to perform the killing himself. The killer, Mohamed Sanbaare, was found guilty of murder at a court in Bossasso, in Somalia's semi-autonomous region of Puntland. Puntland more stable than the capital, Mogadishu, with functioning local authorities. Murderers are judged according to Somalia's sharia law and the concept of Qisas, or "equal retaliation", which states that the victim's family must decide the fate of the murderer.

Excerpt of the Day:

Help those who are in its way to reach safety. Open our hearts in generosity to all who need help in the coming days. In all things and in all times, help us to remember that even when things seem dark and stormy, you are in the boat with us, guiding us to safety. Amen

Excerpt from The Rev. James Martin, S.J.’s Hurricane Prayer.

Opinion of the Day:

CNN: My Take: God not in whirlwinds of Sandy, presidential race
Stephen Prothero, Boston University religion scholar and author of "The American Bible: How Our Words Unite, Divide, and Define a Nation," explains why labeling Hurricane Sandy as the will of God paints the Lord as a capricious deity.

Join the conversation…

CNN: In Obama’s first term, an evolving Christian faith and a more evangelical style
Welcome to the intense, out-of-the-box and widely misunderstood religious life of President Barack Obama. Though he famously left his controversial pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, the year he was elected to the presidency, a handful of spiritual advisers close to Obama say that his time in office has significantly deepened his faith. Stephen Mansfield, a former Christian pastor who wrote the book “The Faith of Barack Obama,” goes so far to say that Obama has experienced a spiritual transformation.

- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Uncategorized

soundoff (140 Responses)
  1. Where is your God now?

    'A state of shock'

    Sandy causes at least 30 U.S. deaths

    October 30, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
    • cristopher hitchens

      30 deaths = 50 % of the American so called atheist population.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:54 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @cris

      I think you're confusing that number with your IQ.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      So you're good with executing those who don't share your beliefs, chrissie? You're all good with abortion if those aborted are sure to be atheists? That about right?

      October 30, 2012 at 4:57 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      What IQ? This dumbfvck doesn't even have a pulse.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
    • nope

      @haw...
      nope

      October 30, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
    • nope

      @to...
      nope

      October 30, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
  2. Christianity and Islam is a mental disease- FACT

    Prayer works when in postive results. When bad results happen, prayer did not fail rather it was God's Will.

    October 30, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • Reasonably

      I've often wondered why Tebow doesn't curse god when he effs up and only praises god when he scores. How fickle!

      October 30, 2012 at 5:57 pm |
  3. Reasonably

    Odin laughs at your puny gods.

    October 30, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
    • Bippy, the Really Gnarly Squirrel-Satan of Spreadable, Sprayable, and Squeezeable Butter Substi.tutes Based on Partially Hydrogenated Vegetable Oils

      Odin?!?! I laugh my squirrely laughter of doom at your tiny little Odin!

      October 30, 2012 at 3:03 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      I'm crushing BOTH your little heads with my thumb and forefinger.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:20 pm |
    • 24HCC

      Stupid squirrels.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
    • Primewonk

      Darth Piper?

      October 30, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Prime, I am your father...

      October 30, 2012 at 4:36 pm |
    • Reasonably

      Odin thinks squirrels make tasty beer-battered appetizers.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
    • fred

      Let’s see here God warned the bright morning star who just could not help himself and rejected God only to be thrown down from the heavens. Then Adam was warned and he rejected obedience to God and the fall of man was upon us. Then Cain was warned yet rejected God and murdered his brother and the ungodly generation of Cain was washed away by the cleansing waters of God in the Flood. Anybody get the picture?
      Nope, it seems Noah and family spun off a generation that was put in bondage to Egypt. God brought them through the Red Sea to safety just as Noah was brought through to safety. Ah, they too rejected God over and over again until captive by the Babylonians and back to slavery. Say it ain’t so, they no sooner find themselves rejecting God and crucifying the Lamb of God and mocked Christ. In 70AD only a few escaped the fall of Jerusalem as the Church and the Holy Spirit took up the banner of God.
      Salt and light to the earth it is the Church and Holy Spirit who are the last remnant to hold back the anti Christ. When the Church falls the final judgment is at hand as there is nothing left to resist the Evil One. This final judgment is what the Bible has been warning us about over and over. Now, just like in the days of Noah we will be like the wicked oblivious to God when the End of Days arrives.
      How kind and patient of God to continually warn us.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:58 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      Wow fred, usually you want until someone actually addresses you directly before you post a moronic and irrelevant tangent filled with unjustified assertions.

      October 30, 2012 at 5:03 pm |
    • fred

      hawaiiguest
      The warning and promise has happened time and time again just as written. I guess you are saying..........no not this time because I am much smarter than those who went before me. You reject God for the same reason the Bright Morning Star rejected God, the same reason Eve rejected God, Cain etc etc.

      October 30, 2012 at 5:08 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @fred

      Congrats, another irrelevant point. I should start keeping a tally, see how much irrelevant bullshit you can spout off to me each month.

      October 30, 2012 at 5:16 pm |
    • hippypoet

      fred is an idiot – we all know this...

      sign at the zoo reads –
      don't feed the morons.

      October 30, 2012 at 5:53 pm |
    • Reasonably

      Odin laughs at Fred too. Not that he's a puny god – he's just funny.

      October 30, 2012 at 5:57 pm |
  4. Hypatia

    Xians spewing hate. What else is new?

    October 30, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
  5. realbuckyball

    Jesus NEVER stood at the foot of Pilate. There was no trail. It's like saying a vandal would stand in the Supreme Court. Common criminals were NEVER brought before aristocratic Roman authorities. It would help if you learned a little history.

    October 30, 2012 at 1:56 pm |
    • realbuckyball

      woops wrong place

      October 30, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
    • cristopher hitchens

      Wrong on everything else also.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
    • cristopher hitchens

      Wrong on everything else also.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:56 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Does that include being wrong about how to post once instead of twice, you moronic azz, chrissie?

      October 30, 2012 at 5:11 pm |
  6. Mormonism is Dangerous

    I might not say anything about this if I didn't think that both Mitt and Paul were not going to bring their religion into their public service for the U.S.'s highest office. That's a pretty frightening prospect, especially considering how unfounded and bizarre Mormonism is. Paul Ryan has even stated that he doesn't think he can separate his religion from his public service.

    In 1996, the Smithsonian Institute issued a statement addressing claims made in the Book of Mormon, stating that the text is primarily a religious text and that archeologists affiliated with the institute found "no direct connection between the archeology of the New World and the subject matter of the book". The statement further describes that there is genetic evidence that the Native American Indians are closely related to peoples of Asia, and that archeological evidence indicates that the Native Americans migrated from Asia over a land bridge over the Bering Strait in prehistoric times. The statement said that there was no credible evidence of contact between Ancient Egyptian or Hebrew peoples and the New World, as indicated by the text of the Book of Mormon. The statement was issued in response to reports that the name of the Smithsonian Institute was being improperly used to lend credibility to the claims of those looking to support the events of the Book of Mormon.

    The National Geographic Society, in a 1988 letter to the Institute for Religious Research, stated "Archaeologists and other scholars have long probed the hemisphere's past and the society does not know of anything found so far that has substantiated the Book of Mormon."

    Of course there are other basic beliefs of Mormonism that have only faith as their foundation.

    October 30, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
    • Reasonably

      Fundamentalism in any form is dangerous.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
  7. Where is your God now?

    'Unthinkable devastation'
    Sandy causes at least 26 U.S. deaths

    October 30, 2012 at 12:52 pm |
  8. HELLO AND WELCOME TO THE "PRAYER WORKS" TEST!

    It's time to put that "prayer works" thing to the test! Here's how it works:

    Since religious people are heavily Republican, we shall allow the "prayer" side to pray for a victory for Romney and GOP control of the Senate going to the GOP. So you Christian Republicans, pray and pray hard for Mitt and the GOP to take the Senate. Pray against Obama and liberals if you prefer spite-prayers. And don't forget to vote.

    For the liberal side, do nothing but vote. Do not pray for or against anything. Just sit back and be secular.

    And a week from now, we will have our results.

    Remember, for all the attention that politics gets from religious people, God's hand should be at work, so get those prayers going and move that hand. God needs you to tell him what to do, so get busy!

    Will prayer work? Let's let the results speak for themselves!

    October 30, 2012 at 12:25 pm |
  9. Rummy Pirate Times-Dispatch (In Greed We Trust)

    Marc Wolpow, a former Bain partner who worked with Romney on many deals, said the discussion at buyout companies typically does not focus on whether jobs will be created. “It’s the opposite—what jobs we can cut,” Wolpow said. “Because you had to document how you were going to create value. Eliminating redundancy, or the elimination of people, is a very valid way."

    October 30, 2012 at 11:35 am |
  10. Rummy Pirate Times-Dispatch (In Greed We Trust)

    For 15 years, Romney had been in the business of creative destruction and wealth creation. But what about his claims of job creation? Though Bain Capital surely helped expand some companies that had created jobs, the layoffs and closures at other firms would lead Romney’s political opponents to say that he had amassed a fortune in part by putting people out of work. The lucrative deals that made Romney wealthy could exact a cost. Maximizing financial return to investors could mean slashing jobs, closing plants, and moving production overseas. It could also mean clashing with union workers, serving on the board of a company that ran afoul of federal laws, and loading up already struggling companies with debt.

    October 30, 2012 at 11:34 am |
  11. Rummy Pirate Times-Dispatch (In Greed We Trust)

    In 1994, Bain invested $27 million as part of a deal with other firms to acquire Dade International, a medical-diagnostics-equipment firm, from its parent company, Baxter International. Bain ultimately made nearly 10 times its money, getting back $230 million. But Dade wound up laying off more than 1,600 people and filed for bankruptcy protection in 2002, amid crushing debt and rising interest rates. The company, with Bain in charge, had borrowed heavily to do acquisitions, accumulating $1.6 billion in debt by 2000. The company cut benefits for some workers at the acquired firms and laid off others. When it merged with Behring Diagnostics, a German company, Dade shut down three U.S. plants. At the same time, Dade paid out $421 million to Bain Capital’s investors and investing partners.

    October 30, 2012 at 11:34 am |
  12. Rummy Pirate Times-Dispatch (In Greed We Trust)

    Southern Illinois:

    Controlling share owner Bain Capital closes BRP plant so the 340 jobs there could be outsourced to Mexico.

    October 30, 2012 at 11:33 am |
  13. Rummy Pirate Times-Dispatch (In Greed We Trust)

    Bain closed GST Steel plant in 2001 laying off 750 workers.

    October 30, 2012 at 11:32 am |
  14. Rummy Pirate Times-Dispatch (In Greed We Trust)

    http://www.examiner.com/article/mitt-romney-implicated-perjury-and-stock-fraud-made-millions-process

    October 30, 2012 at 11:32 am |
  15. JellyBean
    October 30, 2012 at 10:49 am |
  16. kalo

    Sending a check to relief efforts would be vastly superior to praying for them.

    October 30, 2012 at 10:28 am |
    • Why help victims that God wants punished?

      But prayer is far more cash effective for religious people, and it allows their megachurch to get the money – it takes a lot of money to keep Joel Osteens hair looking like that, what with the price of oil being what it is.

      October 30, 2012 at 12:15 pm |
    • Ken

      So hear you re the Osteen oil slick.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:15 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Ahahhhhahhah @ Robert. Dude, I really do respect the depth of your faith, but claiming that there will be a reduction in crime if we all repent is just ludicrous. Where's your evidence that any such thing will occur? Where's the historical precedent?

      Why is it that so many crimes are committed by the children of some of the most ardent believers?

      October 30, 2012 at 3:49 pm |
    • Mark

      Tom your reply got posted on the wrong section.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:52 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Thanks, I fixed it.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
  17. Sane Person

    When religion ruled the world, christians were slaughtering people by the thousands and science was at a stand-still.
    When religion ruled this country, christians were burning people alive for practicing witch craft.
    While religion rules in muslim countries, they are the most violent countries in the world.

    When religion rules, nothing good can come of it. It was only 300 years ago that christians were burning people alive for witch-craft. Do NOT let us get to that point again. Keep America secular.

    October 30, 2012 at 9:58 am |
    • Robert Brown

      Be careful what you wish for, when atheists rule the world is when Jesus will come again. Are you ready?

      October 30, 2012 at 10:35 am |
    • Mark

      Robert your god and jesus doesn't exist so no worries, nothing is going to happen. Crazy nut jobs like you have been saying that for centuries because your cult is so good at brainwashing idiots like you.

      October 30, 2012 at 10:37 am |
    • Huebert

      Yes Robert I am ready.

      October 30, 2012 at 10:37 am |
    • Pete

      Robert, I'll start holding my breath now.

      October 30, 2012 at 10:40 am |
    • cristopher hitchens

      @"sane" person
      Could you tell us of one such slaughter and the ruler responsible for it ?
      Could you name one person burned in America?

      October 30, 2012 at 10:56 am |
    • cristopher hitchens

      @"sane" person
      Could you tell us of one such slaughter and the ruler responsible for it ?
      Could you name one person burned in America ?

      October 30, 2012 at 10:56 am |
    • TrollAlert

      "Ronald Regonzo" who degenerates to:
      "Salvatore" degenerates to:
      "Douglas" degenerates to:
      "cristopher hitchens" degenerates to:
      "truth be told" degenerates to:
      "Thinker23" degenerates to:
      "Atheism is not healthy ..." degenerates to:
      "another repentant sinner" degenerates to:
      "Dodney Rangerfield" degenerates to:
      "tina" degenerates to:
      "captain america" degenerates to:
      "Atheist Hunter" degenerates to:
      "Anybody know how to read? " degenerates to:
      "just sayin" degenerates to:
      "ImLook'nUp" degenerates to:
      "Kindness" degenerates to:
      "Chad" degenerates to
      "Bob" degenerates to
      "nope" degenerates to:
      "2357" degenerates to:
      "WOW" degenerates to:
      "fred" degenerates to:
      "!" degenerates to:
      "pervert alert"

      This troll is not a christian.

      October 30, 2012 at 10:58 am |
    • Mittology

      Fake Hitchens. Look up the Crusades or Inquisition.

      October 30, 2012 at 10:58 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      In Massachusetts, there are two cases of burning at the stake. First, in 1681, a slave named Maria tried to kill her owner by setting his house on fire. She was convicted of arson and burned at the stake at Roxbury, Massachusetts.[8] Concurrently, a slave named Jack, convicted in a separate arson case, was hanged at a nearby gallows, and after death his body was thrown into the fire with that of Maria. Second, in 1755, a group of slaves had conspired and killed their owner, with servants Mark and Phillis executed for his murder. Mark was hanged and his body gibbeted, and Phillis burned at the stake, at Cambridge, Massachusetts.[9]
      In New York, several burnings at the stake are recorded, particularly following suspected slave revolt plots. In 1708, one woman was burnt and one man hanged. In the aftermath of the New York Slave Revolt of 1712, 20 people were burnt, and during the alleged slave conspiracy of 1741, no less than 13 slaves were burnt at the stake.[10]

      October 30, 2012 at 11:01 am |
    • cristopher hitchens

      Atheist posers disguised as the church were responsible for both those events. Next?

      October 30, 2012 at 11:03 am |
    • cristopher hitchens

      @tom tom
      Try to stay on topic, the crime alluded to was witchcraft not arson. But thanks for playing... with yourself as it turns out.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:05 am |
    • Robert Brown

      Mark,
      Those are extremely strong words Mark. Why are you opposed to something that gives people peace, hope, and joy?

      October 30, 2012 at 11:06 am |
    • Robert Brown

      Huebert,
      Based on your recent posts Huebert it doesn’t seem to me that you are, but I hope you will be.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:07 am |
    • Mark

      Really Robert your going to try and use that lame line to justify your cult huh? We can have all those things without having to believe in a god. Try telling your lame argument to the thousands of molested children done by priests.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:09 am |
    • == o ==

      "cristopher hitchens" (aka "truth be told" / "pervert alert", and others (see list above by someone else)) is a sorry excuse for a human being. He is extremely homophobic and is always wishing death onto some group or other that he is afraid of.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:11 am |
    • Huebert

      As far as the religious slaughters go the Crusades, all of them, and the Spanish conquest of central america, under Pizarro and Cortes, jump to mind. And while not burned, Giles Corey was pressed to death during the Salem which trial and at least eight others were hung.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:11 am |
    • Mittology

      Fake Hitchens. Do you have evidence of that deception? Don't forget these were people who would duck suspects under water and if they drowned they were deemed innocent.
      On the other point, did you look up the Crusades or Inquisition?

      October 30, 2012 at 11:12 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Here's your post, chrissie poo:

      cristopher hitchens drools:
      @"sane" person
      Could you tell us of one such slaughter and the ruler responsible for it ?
      Could you name one person burned in America?

      October 30, 2012 at 11:12 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Dumbazz Fake Hitchens can't even write a coherent post and then tries to back-pedal to save face. Won't work, simp.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:13 am |
    • Huebert

      Robert

      What I'm ready for, is for atheism to become the predominant view in America. Jesus hasn't been by for over 2000 years. Your proclamations of "any day now" have long since lost the faint veneer of veracity they once had.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:16 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Chrissie? Oh, Chrissie dear? If you wanted to know about how many people were burned for the crime of witchcraft, then why didn't you ask THAT question? All you asked for were the names of people who'd been burned in America. I could have listed people who've burned themselves on an iron, you idiot, and still have answered your question.

      If you had any brains, you'd realize that in the US, burning wasn't the punishment for witchcraft; in general it was hanging, and yes, a number of people were hanged for witchcraft. Now, do you have anything intelligent to add?

      Of course you don't. You're a troll.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:18 am |
    • lunchbreaker

      Mr. Brown, given your previous post, shouldn't Christians want athiests to be in charge? Clinging to the idea of a Christian majority, when it is supposed to be the "narrow road" seems like trying to prolong the inevitable, even though the inevitable is eternal paradise.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:19 am |
    • realbuckyball

      "Why are you opposed to something that gives people peace, hope, and joy?"
      Interesting. So does alcohol, and drugs. It's the Utilitarian argument just as Dinesh D'Souza does all the time. The question is not "is it useful ?", (and possibly false), but "is it true ?".
      Utilitarianism is a slippery slope.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:20 am |
    • Robert Brown

      Pete,
      That could be a bad idea Pete. It might be several years before atheists rule.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:21 am |
    • realbuckyball

      "Be careful what you wish for, when atheists rule the world is when Jesus will come again. Are you ready?"
      While Jesus certainly was a Apocalyptic preacher, (as were the other approximately 19 or so of his day), he thought the end-times would come in his day. He never said anything about "atheists", or "atheism", and religion at the time was assumed. Everyone believed as it was just a part of the assumed cultural worldview, unlike today. The idea of "non-belief as moral failing", is actually non-Christian. Jesus said "many are called but few are chosen", and "no one shall come to me unless the Father draw him". Mr. Brown actually wishes to appear, (Sophistry), knowledgeable about that which he is actually ignorant.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:25 am |
    • Robert Brown

      Mark,
      I don’t believe you can Mark. When you come to the end of yourself, try God. There is no excuse for anyone who would harm a child, so I won’t try to make any. They will face the righteous judge.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:25 am |
    • Mark

      Robert just because you are a very insecure person doesn't mean the rest of us are. You need an imaginary friend so you can feel special and love yourself, we are not that weak. The excuses people come up with to justify their delusional state and cult shows what is so wrong with some human beings. Time to grow up Robert.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:29 am |
    • save the world and slap some sense into a christard today!

      I will take a civil judge, thank you. I it is also unjust and an insult to the intelligence of rational-thinking people for religious nutcases to keep running and hiding their civil sins within their religion.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:30 am |
    • Robert Brown

      Huebert,
      I would prefer a more Christian America. No one knows when, but we expect him to come soon. Not because we have some knowledge that it will happen soon, but because he told us to always be ready.

      October 30, 2012 at 12:34 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Lunchbreaker,
      Yes, Lord Jesus come quickly. Most have loved ones who they hope will be converted before the return of Jesus.
      We are clothed in the same flesh as all humans. The flesh does not want to die. When filled with the spirit we can honestly say take me home now.
      The broad road is like a funnel, it starts out large and easy to get in, but narrows down and becomes more difficult to get out of.

      October 30, 2012 at 12:35 pm |
    • Sane Person

      Wow. Didn't expect so many comments. I guess what I said holds some truth.

      October 30, 2012 at 12:37 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Realbuckyball,
      Good point. Alcohol and drugs will make you feel good and give you a sense of peace and joy, temporarily. Then you wake up the next morning and feel like you have been run over by a truck. They are poor subst.itutes for the real thing.
      Pilate asked Jesus, “What is truth?” and it was standing right in front of him.

      October 30, 2012 at 12:38 pm |
    • Sane Person

      Sorry, Christians, but you had your chance and you ruined it with your witch burnings and genocides. It's our turn now. We won't f-ck it up like you did.

      October 30, 2012 at 12:44 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Realbuckyball,
      Some believed and some did not. So, some who saw and heard Jesus still did not believe. There is no mention of atheists in the bible until you get to the Psalms. I mentioned what God called atheist on here one time, so I won’t repeat it. God gave two commandments against polytheism, but none against atheism. I agree with you that faith is a gift from God. Do you think God would be more likely give that gift to someone who seeks him or someone who denies him?

      October 30, 2012 at 12:52 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Sane, you certainly gave 'christopher bitc hens" an opportunity to make an azz of itself...again... as always.

      October 30, 2012 at 12:56 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Mark,
      I only wish I could be more yielded to the spirit, more dependent on him, and I hope I never come to the point where I feel adequate in myself. I know the source of my strength and it has nothing to do with me. When and if you ever get done running your show God will be right there waiting, then it will be time to be born again Mark.

      October 30, 2012 at 12:59 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      No need, Robert. I was born just fine the first time.

      October 30, 2012 at 1:03 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son,
      Flesh is flesh, spirit is spirit. Your flesh was born fine, but what about your spirit?

      October 30, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
    • truth be told

      Atheists in control of nations have tortured and killed more people in the last 100 years than were killed in all previous centuries.

      October 30, 2012 at 1:36 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      My "spirit" if there were such a thing, would be perfectly okay. Thanks for asking about something that doesn't exist.

      October 30, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
    • Sane Person

      Secularism is the only way

      October 30, 2012 at 2:08 pm |
    • Mark

      All you continue to show Robert is you don't have self confidence and love in yourself so because of your mental illness you have to believe in an imaginary friend. No thanks, people like you and your cult is why our society is so messed up.

      October 30, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Robert

      "Those are extremely strong words Mark. Why are you opposed to something that gives people peace, hope, and joy?"

      Yes Robert, completely ignore the incredible harm that religion has shown to propogate over and over throughout history.

      October 30, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
    • Sane Person

      Truth be trolled I know you're just trolling but I will address this weak argument that is common among theists. "Hitler, Mao and Stalin were atheists therefore atheism leads to genocide!!". This is a poor ad-hominem argument, as these people did not kill anyone based on the idea of atheism. Atheism has no doctrine. You can't build an ideology on atheism because it is simply a stance on one single issue. Nobody has ever killed in the name of atheism. Religion, on the other hand.. Has caused millions to be killed and tortured.

      Face it, Christians, you blew it! You will never have the power you used to.

      October 30, 2012 at 2:33 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Sane Person

      It's not an ad hominem it's a non-sequitur.

      October 30, 2012 at 2:51 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Mark,
      No misconceptions about myself, not mentally ill, and no imaginary friend. Christianity is not a cult, without it, you wouldn’t have a society to complain about.

      October 30, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
    • Mark

      Robert you belong to a cult and we didn't and don't need your religion to become a society. Just for fun Robert now look at the society you are claiming it created, it has nothing to do with your bible. The housing market crashed because of greed, stealing, and pride. The divorce rate is over 50%. The poor are getting poorer, the rich getting richer, a while pathetic christians stand by holding your hands together praying for it to change. So if you want to claim this society is so great because of your religion you are only continue to prove how delusional you are about reality. It does explain your need for your imaginary friend and mental illness. Robert you belong to a cult and we didn't and don't need your religion to become a society. Just for fun Robert now look at the society you are claiming it created, it definitely doesn’t follow the teachings in your bible. The housing market crashed because of greed, stealing, and pride. The divorce rate is over 50%. The poor are getting poorer, the rich getting richer, a while pathetic christians stand by holding your hands together praying for it to change. So if you want to claim this society is so great because of your religion you are only continue to prove how delusional you are about reality. It does explain your need for your imaginary friend and mental illness.

      October 30, 2012 at 2:58 pm |
    • Mark

      Not sure why that double posted within itself. This is what I wrote.

      Robert you belong to a cult and we didn't and don't need your religion to become a society. Just for fun Robert now look at the society you are claiming it created, it definitely doesn’t follow the teachings in your bible. The housing market crashed because of greed, stealing, and pride. The divorce rate is over 50%. The poor are getting poorer, the rich getting richer, a while pathetic christians stand by holding your hands together praying for it to change. So if you want to claim this society is so great because of your religion you are only continue to prove how delusional you are about reality. It does explain your need for your imaginary friend and mental illness.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Robert

      Awww don't start ignoring me now. I mean I know you disappeared from the conversation yesterday when I pointed out the big problems in the Job story, but just ignoring me is plain rude.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Hawaiiguest,
      Some Christians have done bad things. Some nonbelievers have done bad things. We all have sinned and need to be forgiven.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Hawaiiguest,
      Sorry I missed your comment on Job. I must have signed off for the day. I’ll go see if I can find it.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Mark,
      I know you can’t help it, but you’ll notice I refrain from calling you names. I will agree sin caused the mess, if more people would turn to God, things will improve.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:09 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Robert

      It's not the people, it's the doctrine itself. It creates an us and them mentality. In encourages judgmentalism, marginalization, and an abdication of responsibility.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:16 pm |
    • Mark

      Robert you are living in a bubble which further explains your mental illness and need to cling to your cult. If you look at the stats Robert supposedly 80% of Americans are christians, so believing in your god isn't working.

      Lawsuits are out of control. Yet your bible clearly states christians shouldn't do that.

      Drunkards – drunk driving is actually on the rise. Each year it kills 17,000 people, and is the No. 2 cause of accidental death. – Yet your God commands Christians regarding alcohol is to avoid drunkenness

      Divorce – The divorce rate in America for first marriage, vs second or third marriage
      50% percent of first marriages, 67% of second and 74% of third marriages end in divorce. – Your bible clearly states divorce is not acceptable unless there’s a real reason for it most people just divorce because they’re too lazy to work it out.

      Gluttony – two-thirds of Americans are overweight or obese.

      I could go on but believing in your imaginary friend could fix these issues is exactly why America is being drag into the gutter, we have to roll up our selves and actually do the work ourselves. Believing in your cult has proven it can't create a good society.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:17 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Hawaiiguest,
      Found your comments on Job, Page 1 of the whirlwind.
      No one can deny that the things that happened to Job were horrible. I don’t pretend to know all the “why’s”, but it is obvious if you read Job’s defense of himself to his friends, he was at the point of death and still defending his righteousness. He was prideful and it is clear that God hates pride.
      Ok, I will take off the “God is good glasses” for a second. I do believe God is love. He is also the righteous judge. “Fear God” is found throughout the bible and liberal interpreters will say it means respect and reverence. It does mean those things, it also means fear. If you are out of his will you should fear his judgment.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:35 pm |
    • Huebert

      Robert

      Do you not see it as immoral for God to demand that we both love and fear him?

      October 30, 2012 at 3:40 pm |
    • Mark

      In the hands of a skilled copywriter, fear sells. It motivates, urges and moves people to take action like very few other emotions can, it's why the writers of the bible put it in. Its the greatest tool a cult uses to keep people believing in their cult. Robert has fallen for the greatest con to sell a product.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:41 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Hawaiiguest,
      Let’s see judgmentalism, marginaliztion, and abdication of responsibility, judge yourself, live separated from the world, and depend on God. The doctrine isn’t bad it’s the people who fail. They judge others instead of themselves, they marginalize others instead of separating themselves, and they blame others when they mess up instead of blaming themselves and relying on God.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:43 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Robert

      Worpship through fear is not loving. Fear of the thing means it is a shallow worship, not at all sincere, and done through the view of having no other choice. The god of the bible is not a loving being. An underlying theme within the bible is "Believe and kowtow, or else get fucked up". All during a time when god was supposedly talking to a bunch of people and miracles were a dime a fucking dozen. Then you get to today, where the only "record" is an unreliable book that the authorship of many parts cannot be confirmed. The same standard of applies "believe or else", except there is not the added bonus of constant miracles or god revealing himself in very obvious ways.
      You still have not taken off the "god=good" glasses Robert, because those glasses are the only way to think the god you propose is worthy of anything other than derision and ridicule.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:43 pm |
    • Mark

      No Robert your cult allows people to make excuses for their lives by stating it must be god's will, it's why your followers don't take responsibility for their lives or their impact on this planet.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:47 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Mark,
      Sin is the reason for all the bad stuff, and yes, Christians sin. If 80% of Americans are Christians and if they would repent of their sin and humble themselves before God, you would see a major reduction in all the stats you quoted.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:47 pm |
    • Mark

      Robert you just admitted your religion isn't working for our society. You are too brainwashed that you'll continue come up with all kind of excuses to justify your mental delusional state, that's why your cult is so bad for our society. Do our society a great favor go seek professional help.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:50 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Ahahhhhahhah @ Robert. Dude, I really do respect the depth of your faith, but claiming that there will be a reduction in crime if we all repent is just ludicrous. Where's your evidence that any such thing will occur? Where's the historical precedent?

      Why is it that so many crimes are committed by the children of some of the most ardent believers?

      October 30, 2012 at 3:51 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Hawaiiguest,
      There are miracles and yet they are explained away. If you are in the will of God it is all love. Today, we are promised our needs and spiritual blessings. I receive both of those. In the bible days God promised his people specific things, some were conditional and some were unconditional. It gives us a glimpse of how God operates. To learn more you really have to get to know him for yourself and even then I am convinced we only get a brief glimpse.

      October 30, 2012 at 3:57 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Mark,
      God’s will is that none will perish.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Robert Brown

      For judging, take a look at
      http://www.biblebelievers.com/jmelton/Judging.html

      For marginalization of others
      Anyone arrogant enough to reject the verdict of the judge or of the priest who represents the LORD your God must be put to death. Such evil must be purged from Israel. (Deuteronomy 17:12 NLT)
      Whoever sacrifices to any god, except the Lord alone, shall be doomed. (Exodus 22:19 NAB)
      Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? (2 Corinthians 6:14)
      Then there's the whole kill non-believers things.

      As for Abdication of responsibility, that is what the entire Jesus thing is all about. Not taking any responsibility and avoiding consequences.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
    • Mark

      Robert is a great example of a delusional mind, the excuses you come up with are priceless. Get professional help. By the way my life is fantastic, full of love and joy without any belief in a god. That's called reality.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
    • Mark

      Robert people are perishing everyday, so your god's will ain't working.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son,
      Ardent believers and their offspring are as capable of sin as any other human being.
      The history of repentance followed by God’s blessing and peace are recorded in the bible.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Nope, Bobby, dear. The Bible won't do as evidence. If you have nothing to corroborate, your claim is false and without basis.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
    • Douglas

      Robert Brown aka fred aka chad. This is the same troll.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Hawaiiguest,
      I saw your last post, but I have to run. The new testament quote does apply to Christians, believers shouldn’t marry or go into business with nonbelievers. The old testament stuff applies to the children of Israel. Talk to you later.

      Mark,
      I am glad you have love and joy. I hope you have peace too. If you don’t have peace I know one who can give you peace that is beyond explanation. You guys have a great day.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
    • Christianity and Islam is a mental disease- FACT

      Robert Brown

      Hawaiiguest,
      I saw your last post, but I have to run. The new testament quote does apply to Christians, believers shouldn’t marry or go into business with nonbelievers.
      .
      .
      I agree it would not be wise for a person of sound mind to marry or go into business with a delusional person. Just asking for trouble.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      Does any believer want to take up where Robert Brown is leaving off?

      October 30, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
    • Bob

      So, Robert Brown, you've now effectively said repeatedly that your god is a vindictive jerk who goes for violent, typically murderous punishments that are way out of line with the "crime".

      So, no thanks. You can keep your nasty jerk of a god to yourself. Quietly, please.

      October 30, 2012 at 4:43 pm |
  18. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things

    October 30, 2012 at 7:55 am |
    • Huebert

      Lier

      October 30, 2012 at 10:00 am |
    • TrollAlert

      "Ronald Regonzo" who degenerates to:
      "Salvatore" degenerates to:
      "Douglas" degenerates to:
      "truth be told" degenerates to:
      "Thinker23" degenerates to:
      "Atheism is not healthy ..." degenerates to:
      "another repentant sinner" degenerates to:
      "Dodney Rangerfield" degenerates to:
      "tina" degenerates to:
      "captain america" degenerates to:
      "Atheist Hunter" degenerates to:
      "Anybody know how to read? " degenerates to:
      "just sayin" degenerates to:
      "ImLook'nUp" degenerates to:
      "Kindness" degenerates to:
      "Chad" degenerates to
      "Bob" degenerates to
      "nope" degenerates to:
      "2357" degenerates to:
      "WOW" degenerates to:
      "fred" degenerates to:
      "!" degenerates to:
      "pervert alert"

      This troll is not a christian.

      October 30, 2012 at 10:17 am |
    • Jesus

      Prayer does 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.

      October 30, 2012 at 10:21 am |
    • hal 9001

      I'm sorry, "Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things", but your assertions regarding atheism and prayer are unfounded. Using my Idiomatic Expression Equivalency module, the expression that best matches the degree to which your assertions may represent truths is: "TOTAL FAIL".

      I see that you repeat these unfounded statements with high frequency. Perhaps the following book can help you:

      I'm Told I Have Dementia: What You Can Do... Who You Can Turn to...
      by the Alzheimer's Disease Society

      October 30, 2012 at 10:37 am |
    • HeavenSense

      Hi Prayerbot.

      October 30, 2012 at 12:33 pm |
  19. JellyBean

    I can't stand Ralph Reed.

    October 30, 2012 at 7:44 am |
  20. Isaiah 45:7

    I form the light and create darkness, I bring prosperity and create disaster; I, the LORD, do all these things.

    October 30, 2012 at 7:09 am |
    • Book of Armaments Chapter 4 Verses 16-20

      Then did he raise on high the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch, saying, "Bless this, O Lord, that with it thou mayst blow thine enemies to tiny bits, in thy mercy." And the people did rejoice and did feast upon the lambs and toads and tree-sloths and fruit-bats and orangutans and breakfast cereals ... Now did the Lord say, "First thou pullest the Holy Pin. Then thou must count to three. Three shall be the number of the counting and the number of the counting shall be three. Four shalt thou not count, neither shalt thou count two, excepting that thou then proceedeth to three. Five is right out. Once the number three, being the number of the counting, be reached, then lobbest thou the Holy Hand Grenade in the direction of thine foe, who, being naughty in my sight, shall snuff it."

      October 30, 2012 at 10:57 am |
    • Bob

      Good post, Book of A.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:14 am |
    • Bob

      Issy, yeah, sounds like your god is quite the schizophrenic jerk. No thanks, please keep your fictional monster to yourself.

      October 30, 2012 at 11:15 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.