My Take: Jesus was a dirty, dirty God
January 5th, 2013
10:00 PM ET

My Take: Jesus was a dirty, dirty God

Editor’s note: Johnnie Moore is the author of Dirty God (#DirtyGod). He is a professor of religion and vice president at Liberty University. Keep track of him @johnnieM .

By Johnnie Moore, Special to CNN

(CNN) - Jesus was a lot more like you than you think, and a lot less clean cut than this iconic image of him that floats around culture.

You know the image. It’s the one where Jesus is walking like he’s floating in robes of pristine white followed by birds singing some holy little ditty. He’s polished, manicured, and clearly – God.

But despite the Christian belief that Jesus was both fully God and fully man, Jesus was a rather dirty God.

He was the “earthly” son of a carpenter, and life in the first-century was both more lurid and unfinished than our collective religious memory seems to recall.

To that end, I suggested recently to several astounded colleagues of mine that Jesus actually had to go to the bathroom, perhaps even on the side of the road between Capernaum and Jerusalem.

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What tipped them over the edge was when I insinuated that Jesus, like almost every other human being living in the rural world in that time, might have even had dysentery on an occasion or two.

Someone said, “You mean that Jesus might have had severe diarrhea?”

“Yep,” I replied, “That’s exactly what I mean.”

It seems like an obvious statement if you believe that Jesus was “fully God” and “fully man” (as most evangelicals believe and call the Incarnation), but to some of us it seems in the least, inappropriate, and at the most, sacrilege, to imagine Jesus in this way. We might believe that God was also man, but we picture him with an ever-present halo over his head.

But, actually, the Jesus of the Bible was more human than most people are conditioned to think.

I call this the dirty side of Jesus. He was grittier, and a lot more like us than maybe we believe, and that’s one of the reasons why so many thousands of people followed him so quickly.

They could relate to him.

He was the teacher from a small town who knew and understood the economic insecurity that was common in the first century. Times must have been rather tough for Jesus at points in his life, for he even spoke of being homeless, having to sleep on the ground with no roof over his head.

He also knew what it was like to have his message rejected and how it felt to be misunderstood. Jesus was regarded with such little significance in his hometown that one of his critics once remarked sardonically, “Isn’t this the carpenter’s son?” Jesus eventually had to move to different city (Capernaum) because his teachings so infuriated the people living in his hometown that they drove him out of Nazareth and even tried to throw him off a cliff.

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The real Jesus had dirt underneath his fingernails and calluses on his hands. He probably smelled badly from sweating profusely in the Judean sun on his long hikes to Jerusalem, and Jesus was, without a doubt, rumored to be a hypocrite or absolutely mad for all the time he spent with prostitutes and those afflicted with leprosy.

Not exactly have a clean-cut image.

He had a rather shady reputation.

Some people thought he was a revolutionary. The religious leaders called him a heretic, and others even accused him of being a drunkard and a glutton - in no small part because of the vagabond group of disciples he had with him. No serious religious leader of his day would have ever recruited such people.

For his core 12 disciples, Jesus included a tough-as-nails, bombastic fisherman (Peter), a chief tax collector named Matthew (the most hated popular figure of the time), an eventual traitor who was stealing money out of the offering bucket (Judas), a prolific doubter (Thomas), two jocks nicknamed the “Sons of Thunder” (James and John) and Simon the Zealot, a member of a radical political party which believed in using violence to kick out the Romans.

Jesus was sarcastic, too.

He often snapped back at the Pharisees with a tone fit for late-night television, and in a terribly embarrassing moment for all those around him, Jesus even called these respected religious teachers “snakes” that were probably sons of “Satan.”

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That’s not exactly the behavior of a sweet, self-help teacher with a halo over his head.

It’s the behavior of a frustrated man who might also be divine, but sure knows how it feels for annoying people to get under his skin.

Christians believe that Jesus chose to be born fully human, too, but why?

Lots of theologians have laid out opinions over the centuries, and in their opining they have tried once again to hijack Jesus’ humanity by defining it in philosophical terms. I believe it’s simpler than the philosophy and church councils and centuries of argument.

The brilliance of Christianity is the image of a God, named Jesus, arrived with dirty hands.

Jesus came in a time period when Greco-Roman gods were housed in gigantic temples and portrayed with superhuman powers and with superhuman physiques. Gods were believed to be far away from people on their mountains or hemmed up in their sanctuaries.

Jesus arrived in defiance of this prevailing imagery.

Jesus didn’t come flinging lightning bolts from a mountaintop, or playing politics in Rome. He came to live in a typical Middle Eastern village called Nazareth that was home to a couple hundred typical people. He didn’t decide to brandish his power, but to spend most of his time with the powerless and disenfranchised. And when he started a religious movement that reshaped history, he did it in the most profound and anticlimatic way:

He let himself be killed, and then he busted open a tomb.

In Jesus we meet a Savior who understood the desire to sleep just a few more hours, and who had to control his temper sometimes. In Jesus we find a God we can relate to because he chose to relate to us.

He was the God who became dirty so that the world’s souls might be made clean.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Johnnie Moore.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Jesus

soundoff (7,741 Responses)
  1. Bob


    January 10, 2013 at 5:48 pm |
    • dreamer96

      What do you call a quadriplegic in the pool...Bob....

      Before you say that is inappropriate humor...consider Humor is an important part of healing.....even for quadriplegics....

      January 10, 2013 at 5:56 pm |
    • Lou

      More emotional appealing for the belief in God, and not actual logical arguments that demonstrate that God actually exists. God is a pretty good idea, but so is Santa, and the essay "Yes, Virginia, There Is A Santa Claus" is the same kind of argument that Strobel makes. I enjoy reading "Yes, Virginia, ...", but it doesn't lead me to believe that some jolly guy is actually breaking into our homes every Dec 25th just to leave gifts.

      January 10, 2013 at 6:31 pm |
    • dreamer96

      Well Santa Clause is part legend..and someone just might have been real, did give out presents to kids...and then since parents like the idea so much and Capitalist really liked the idea ..They picked up the idea and continued it...SO in a way Santa lives on even today....So who is to say that Santa does not exist , when the spirit of Santa lives on in parents, and families and relatives, and friends....at least a little in all over the parents and familys, and friends, that exchange gifts on Christmas...

      And isn't that what the teachings of Jesus want us to do too...pickup where he left off....be a little like Jesus in our daily life...Treat strangers with kindness...help each other...Leave the judgement to him...

      Don't Worry Be Happy....ops that was Bobby Marely or was it Bobby Mcferrin...

      January 10, 2013 at 7:34 pm |
  2. robert

    Wow, Jesus was probably just a regular guy, also probably a real nice guy, the rest is just stuff people like to believe, you know the invisible man that will save all that believe in him and they will live for eternity....how can you believe that??!.... to me its more like dust to dust and while you are here try to be good to your neighbors and try to help those less fortunate, beyond that there is not much you can do, live your life in peace and let others do the same. Pretty easy if you ask me.

    January 10, 2013 at 5:28 pm |
    • Lou

      They say that you can't con an honest man, that it's people's greed that clouds their judgment. Well, I'd say that people are pretty greedy to avoid death and to have a super-powered being to do their bidding. Greedy enough to push aside their common sense when it comes to things that there isn't any evidence for whatsoever.

      January 10, 2013 at 6:38 pm |
    • HaHa

      Your words show that you are a fool.

      January 10, 2013 at 7:12 pm |
    • OTOH


      You're no fool, though, right? You can see the Emperor's invisible golden-threaded robe, right? Whattaguy!

      January 10, 2013 at 7:17 pm |
    • OTOH


      Believers have a huge amount of greed. They are not satisfied with this life, but want MORE... and not only MORE, but a perfect, blissful, eternal MORE, being loved and catered to by the most powerful being imaginable.

      January 10, 2013 at 7:21 pm |
  3. Buster

    The author of this post needs to go back to undergrad, grad school or seminary school. Based on what we know about Eastern culture, various customs, and bathing rituals, Jesus would have been constantly bathing, and cleansing himself in preparation to pray to His Heavenly Father. There were specific instances where he didn't wash before a meal, but those were done as object lessons, and did not represent his usual pattern of behavior.

    January 10, 2013 at 4:44 pm |
    • dreamer96

      The Romans were big on bathing...built large public bath houses everywhere...in all the countries they controlled...but bathing in Roman society was different then what you and I do today...They did not use a soap..and before they entered the bath water, they would wash their bodies..Using a method of applying oils to the body and scraping it off with a wooden tool...so the skin was never really "clean" they way we are today....one good thing is the water in the baths was constantly being replaced...

      January 10, 2013 at 5:06 pm |
    • Buster

      In relative terms they were clean.

      In my opinion, we as Americans are dirty, and the women here are pretty filthy compared to females in other Eastern countries.

      January 10, 2013 at 7:00 pm |
    • dreamer96


      If I was a Psychologist, I would say you just opened a mental door, with that last comment, that needs to be explored some more....

      So you think American women are more unclean compared to some eastern women...hmmmm,...and just what do you mean?....Why don't we explore that a little...What are your feelings about your mother?...The women you meet each day?..The women in your life?..the women you see on Ameriican TV, in the American news?..On the American streets?.. Are you single?...Are you happily married?.. Happily divorced?... Are you currently in a realationship with a American woman?..If So..How is that relationship going for you?.. Are you trying to date women in America?..Do you have a fear of STD?..Would you date an American woman that is not a virgin? An American woman that jokes about not being a virgin, and laughs at the question..Is she a Virgin?.. or not being a virgin anymore?...Are you a virgin?...Are you looking for another virgin to date?.....

      According to the Bible Jesus's mother was a Virgin...Wow....Wow you would think that would have been big news in the Roman days all by itself....a preganent virgin...But there is the story of the doubting midwife that check Mary and doubts her no more about being a preganet virgin......

      January 10, 2013 at 8:04 pm |
    • Buster

      What dreamer. Are you a woman?

      January 11, 2013 at 12:04 am |
    • dreamer96


      No I am not a woman...but my mother was...my wife is..my daughter is...and over one half of the population of America are women.....

      January 11, 2013 at 9:50 am |
  4. Mike

    I've also wondered about how Frodo and Sam "took care of business" as they travelled to Mordor, and about Aragorn, Gimli and Legolas as they pursued the orcs who kidnapped Merry and Pippin

    January 10, 2013 at 4:08 pm |
    • IAM

      Questions, questions,questions. These questions you ask may never be answered satisfactorily. These are vexing times without a true path out.

      January 10, 2013 at 4:28 pm |
    • dreamer96

      Well I loved the Harry Potter series ..

      and I was a little surprised to findout J.K.Rowling outed that Albus Dumbledore was Gay...I am not against Gays...but it does change the scene when Severus Snape is asking Dombledore...to protect Lily James and the their baby from Voldermort...

      Dumbledore asks What is in it for him if he does protect the three...If Dumbledore does helps to protect Lily Potter, James, and baby on the way...Harry...Dumbledore asks...What will Severus give him in return?...and Snape answers "Anything"...

      Just what did Snape have to give Dumbledore as payment for protecting his love Lily???

      January 10, 2013 at 5:32 pm |
  5. Baptist_deacon

    Amen. I agree completely with this well written article.

    January 10, 2013 at 4:03 pm |
  6. rtr

    The reason for Jesus; For evil people can do whatever they want and still go to a good place called heaven, they use Jesus for their own means no matter how many times they "sin" they can still be saved. I believe they left out the 3 strikes claus if you do the same sin 3 times to heII with you. I also would believe if the true christians really did, but they don't. If they did then there would be no wars, no poverty, no hate because someone was different, the 2nd amendment would be mute because Jesus said to turn the weapons into plows.

    January 10, 2013 at 3:47 pm |
    • dreamer96


      Roman Emperor Constantine is the First Roman Emperor to call Christianity a valid Roman Religion...and He had his own family members killed...so how does the 3 strike rule apply...He is considered a Saint now by the Catholic Church....hmm

      and it seems the Catholic Church did foregive the Sinners inside the Church more then 3 times....

      January 10, 2013 at 4:51 pm |
  7. Banjo Ferret

    Do not fear the dirt. It won't be here for very long. Tim the Destroyer of Worlds is coming. Repent!

    January 10, 2013 at 3:12 pm |
    • the colosseum is full

      Nope no dysentery for Jesus.. he made the statement that any deadly thing his believer s drank would not hurt them in MARK 16: 16-18

      🙂 🙂

      January 10, 2013 at 3:32 pm |
  8. hanumanone

    What a shame, with such a platform that Johnnie Moore should espouse such an anti-Christ message and tragically misguide so many and spiritually abuse so many young people. He is intolerant of the message of Jesus and any view that opposes his own empire-building agenda. As is said in the scriptures, "they will know us (Christians) by our love.", and by the barometer of the scripture, we know Johnnie to be something else. smh

    January 10, 2013 at 2:52 pm |
    • sam stone

      how is it an anti-christ message?

      January 10, 2013 at 2:59 pm |
    • dreamer96

      What anti-christ meassage do you see by saying Jesus the Son of God to human form...and had to live as a human with us?....

      I still see the people's reaction to Cadidate Rick Perry and his appeal to allow the Children of illegal immingrants to go to school..He said they were brought here by their parent they did not wrong...those kids should be allowed to attend our public schools...and he was critized by the GOP right wing Christians for that comment......It seems to me there are many that wave the Bible and have no idea what is written in the Bible...

      January 10, 2013 at 3:13 pm |
    • dreamer96

      Mitt Romney's first job after College was to work for Monsanto and help them improve their Corporate image after getting cuaght dumping known cancer causing PCB's into the rivers and water ways around the Great Lakes....So did the families that came down with cancer from drinking water contaminated by those dumped PCB's chemicals commite a sin against God...or did Monsanto commite the sin by dumping them?....If a killer shot a victim...who committed the sin against God...the shooter with the gun, or the person with the bullet hole that needs medical attention?

      January 10, 2013 at 3:26 pm |
    • rtr

      They will know us by our love (christians) love of gays, love of doctors who perform abortions, love of the musIum, ya christians show their love daily just like there counter part the musIums do.

      January 10, 2013 at 3:55 pm |
    • sam stone

      i see that hanuanone is another post and run christian. a coward without the guts to support his blather. what a punk

      January 10, 2013 at 4:04 pm |
    • foolishwolf

      From my point of you, the only things christians love is being intolerant of minorities they don't agree with.

      If Jesus couldn't get sick, how did he die? If he was in perfect health and couldn't get sick then he shouldn't have died after three days.

      January 11, 2013 at 9:36 am |
    • dreamer96


      Why did Jesus die after three days?????

      I think you are confused by the story of Jesus in the Bible...Jesus died on the cross, most people died back then from not being able to breath anymore ...they would become exhausted pulling themselves up to breath..or pushing up off a peg at their foot...but a Roman soldier speared Jesus below the ribs and Jesus bled out and died faster...It was that spear wound that caused Jesus to die faster..Jesus died the same day he was put on the cross....Then his body was taken down cleaned and placed in the tomb... and then Jesus rose from the ranks of the dead on the third day...after he had already died....

      January 11, 2013 at 10:01 am |
  9. W.G.

    Nice article but I don´t believe Jesus ever suffered any sickness . While being fully Man and GOD , He also
    was sinless . The bible says sickness is a by-product of sin .

    January 10, 2013 at 2:01 pm |
    • sam stone

      Wow, illness is a by product of sin?

      We know that no one knew more about medicine and the source of sickness than iron age sheep mounters

      January 10, 2013 at 3:01 pm |
    • jwt

      "The bible says sickness is a by-product of sin ". Unbelievably stupid.

      January 10, 2013 at 4:08 pm |
  10. IAM

    So, how many robes did Jesus have? Who washed his clothes ? These are the things that perplex me.

    January 10, 2013 at 1:33 pm |
    • dreamer96

      Why did Jesus not walk back to the Roman Court, the Jewish Temple, the Market Place, and show his scares and ask to be killed again...That is what I wonder about...Imagine the impact that would have had on Roman society..The number of followers that would have followed him then..Would the same Roman soldiers nail him to the cross a second time?...A third time?...Jesus could have really changed things if he had gone back and said "Do you want to try that again?"....

      January 10, 2013 at 1:43 pm |
    • A Frayed Knot


      Well, this is how they cleaned clothing in 1st century Rome, so perhaps it was done in that area too:

      " Wool garments required special attention to keep from shrinking or losing their shape. Public laundries were set up. They employed “fullers” who washed, whitened, redyed and pressed the garments. The fullers press consisted of two upright planks and a large screw top. Turned by a crank it flattened clothes between the planks. Urine was used as bleach."


      Wee the peeple for stain-free clothing...

      January 10, 2013 at 1:51 pm |
    • IAM

      Good followup from both of you. Thanks. Yea, going back to the Temple or Market Place would have been epic. Good point.

      January 10, 2013 at 1:59 pm |
  11. Buster

    Also, keep in mind that the best of science knowledge to date does not support the idea of an infinite universe, especially the one we live in.

    January 10, 2013 at 1:06 pm |
    • dreamer96


      The more we know, the more we realize how little we really know....

      Funny how we can only analyze what we can see in the Universe..either visually or with sientifitic devices...and through our physics and mathematics....as our telescopes, sensors, devices. get better we see farther back in time. We can see more distant stars, take better mesuarement, collect more data from our device, but the light from the outer edge does not mean that is the end of the universe..or the other forms of radiation..that information is just how far we can see, or can detect information....Then there is antimatter, dark matter, and all the rest...Dark Matter alone, scientist believe make up 84% or so of our Universe...

      We just do not know how big the Universe is...Maybe we will never know..if we do develop the ability to travel faster then the speed of light...will it involved using a anti-gravity drive or hoping into another dimension, then back into ours, or will it use worm holes?..Even if we were to travel faster then light...then what?..What if we could travel millions of light years in some direction away from earth..then stop and setup a telescope...will we still see millions of years into the past in that same direction away from Earth....adding to the overall size of the Known Universe...by millions or billions of years...

      January 10, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
    • dreamer96


      Consider the state of our worlds known science in the year 1492...

      Christopher Columbus sailed west looking for a new route to the far east...to China...That was the best of the known science in the world then..or what we did not know...we did not know what was to the west....

      January 10, 2013 at 1:36 pm |
  12. Buster

    My response is that the notion of multiple universes does not change my basic argument because you just apply it to the initial baby universe. Linear, quadratic, non-linear, it does not matter. The only folks out there boasting about an infinite age universe are a few atheists that still want an excuse to be hedonistic, and not reputable science minded folks.

    January 10, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
    • sam stone

      an excuse to be hedonistic? and what are you trying to excuse? servile pandering?

      January 10, 2013 at 3:03 pm |
  13. Buster

    Blah comment didn't go through

    January 10, 2013 at 12:57 pm |
  14. Buster


    No, my friend, you are wrong. Nothingness is not a virtual mass of particles. Lawrence Kraus is an idiot along with Charles Darwin and S. Hawking. A virtual mass of particles is something, and something that has to be created. This is even dumber than S. Hakwings claim that a vacuum space is nothing. This is simply not true and they are trying to pull the wool over your eyes to sell books.

    January 10, 2013 at 11:16 am |
    • PRISM 1234

      Yeah! and they say that WE are the dumb sheep?! DUH!

      January 10, 2013 at 12:10 pm |
    • Really??

      Why is it you think that matter had to be created. How do you know it hasn't always existed. The big bang is now proven fact, but it is likely that this was not the first nor the lst big bang. When you are dealing with multiple dimensions, you cannot say with certainty anything like "It had to be created". You clearly do not comprehend physics, esecially theoretical physics. Stop thinking linearly.

      January 10, 2013 at 12:17 pm |
    • Jordan


      Since when is the big bang THEORY a proven fact? That simply isn't true. You're trying to base reality on mere speculation of possibilities. A fact is a truth known by actual experience or observation.

      January 10, 2013 at 1:04 pm |
    • Really??

      The big bang is proven fact since the sixties when the first Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to the scientists that detected the background radiation that was theorized to exist, then the rest of the work done since then culminating most recently to 2006 when the Nobel Peace Prize was given to two American scientists. Since then it is accepted fact that the Big Bang did happen. There is still much debate as to the cause though.

      January 10, 2013 at 1:14 pm |
    • HaHa

      So the puny little creatures got so smart and proved to themselves that their evolved from monkeys! Ha, ha, ha.....

      January 10, 2013 at 3:46 pm |
    • Really??

      No. Actually we evolved from apes, with a common ancestor to monkeys.

      January 10, 2013 at 4:48 pm |
    • HaHa

      Who cares?! They're all cousins. You should know, they're yours too....but not mine LOL! I come from another breed! 🙂

      January 10, 2013 at 5:30 pm |
    • Really??

      While I have mountains of evidence that you did coome from apes, you have a book written by ignorant iron age men.You choose to ignore real evidence in, and in its place you place myth. You are delusional.

      January 11, 2013 at 8:07 am |
    • PRISM 1234

      You say WE are delusional . But look into our own evil heart and what's in it, and IT itself should teach you of things that your intellect never will. Man's intellect without apart form spirit makes him hopelessly deficiency and lame. Maybe that's why you and your ilk love to boast about your "intelligence"..... since you 're deep down inside aware of your lacking, eh?!

      January 11, 2013 at 9:01 pm |
    • PRISM 1234

      You say WE are delusional . But look into your own evil heart and what's in it, and IT itself should teach you of things that your intellect never will. Man's intellect apart form his spirit makes him hopelessly deficient and lame.
      Maybe that's why you and your ilk love to boast about your "intelligence"..... since you 're deep down inside aware of your lacking, eh?!

      January 11, 2013 at 9:04 pm |
    • Really??

      My heart is not evil. Just like a christian to jump to insults when they have no evidence with which to make an argument. Don't try to insult me, you don't know me well enough to insult me. What I have posted is correct. it is delusional to believe myths when confronted with evidence to the contrary. it is irrational and unreasonable to believe something for the sake of the belief.

      January 13, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
  15. Global Mens Group

    Thought-provoking THOUGHTS on Jesus, Johnnie! Yes indeed, the BEAUTIFUL GOD did 'CROSS'over to the unBEAUTIFUL JESUS for 33 years ... and for 6 hours one Friday, the BEAUTIFUL GOD 'CROSSED'over from Holy to unHoly all for us. "He became Sin for us" more at this link on "unBeautiful Jesus" http://www.globalmensgroup.com/Bible-verses-about-Jesus-in-the-Old-Testament/.

    January 10, 2013 at 9:51 am |
    • Tod

      He was hung on a tree and thus became "cursed" according to OT teaching and this disqualifies Jesus as being the Messiah. That, and the fact that he did not bring peace to the Jewish people during his lifetime.

      January 10, 2013 at 9:56 am |
    • Grundig Glasswerks

      Excessive/random use of all caps is a sign of mental illness.

      January 10, 2013 at 9:57 am |
    • sam stone

      What makes you think that man is sinful?

      January 10, 2013 at 10:10 am |
  16. Bob

    I don't like the fact that he calls Jesus the most beautiful Holy and loving person of God dirty. Not once but twice. It shows a arrogance and disrespect that that only comes with ignorance. I am constantly amazed at the people who are supposedly learned and supposedly teaching being ignorant of so many facets of what they are talking about. I doubt that he would be able to say what he wrote if he had actually met Jesus. I believe it not only shows ignorance but lack of love and yet he teaches others. How does this happen? Jesus is the one that paid the price for our sins sits at the right hand of the Father and helps all those that call upon His name. He is even our advocate in front of the Father and yes is most beautiful. If you have a experience with Jesus you will never forget it, it will change your life and make you the person you are supposed to be. What a wonderful name what a wonderful person Thank you Jesus for all your blessing today and everyday.

    January 10, 2013 at 7:07 am |
    • Todd

      "If you have a experience with Jesus you will never forget it, it will change your life and make you the person you are supposed to be"

      A prejudice hateful bigot like you Bob. No, thanks.

      January 10, 2013 at 9:49 am |
    • Boris

      Bob, if your "Father" is truly omnipotent, omniscient, and perfect as Christians so often claim, then why does he need his "son" to "advocate" for us?

      January 10, 2013 at 9:54 am |
    • Tod

      Why would he need the sacrifice of his son just to announce this new deal? Nope, God still needed a blood sacrifice in order to make a connection with humanity. In this way he's no different than the Aztec gods demanding human sacrifice.

      January 10, 2013 at 9:59 am |
    • PRISM 1234

      Bob, thank you for your posts. They are glimmer of light in a dark place. Many here have lost their sight and can't see even when light shines. God bless and keep you friend !

      January 10, 2013 at 10:07 am |
    • Bob

      Thank you, PRISM 1234.

      The whole premise of Christianity that the death of the son of god would have been any kind of "sacrifice" and was required to deal with "sin" is utter nonsense. This is a supposed omnipotent being that we are discussing. Christians, think this through a bit: how come your 'omnipotent' creature couldn't do all that supposed saving without the loony son sacrifice bit? And for that matter, how was it a sacrifice at all, when an omnipotent being could just pop up a replacement son any time it wants with less than a snap of its fingers? Pretty feeble god it is that you've made for yourself there. Give that some thought and maybe it will help you leave your delusions behind. You will remain a laughingstock otherwise, and the more you dwell in your silly delusion and ancient myths, instead of keeping up with advances in medicine and technology, the more America slips downward relative to the rest of the world in science and other fields.

      Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement. Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.

      January 10, 2013 at 10:09 am |
    • Pete

      "Many here have lost their sight and can't see even when light shines."

      Another lie from the xtians – 29!

      January 10, 2013 at 10:09 am |
    • Saraswati

      I think his point was that it was the real, human side of Jesus that early Christians knew and that won them over. If one is to win people over to Christianity it would, in this view, be useful to consider the image, the man, that won the first converts. I think he's also making a point about what things are and are not important. I don't belong to his religion, but his presentation seemed quite sensible.

      January 10, 2013 at 10:11 am |
    • PRISM 1234

      Yep, this IS a dark place, and satan is foaming mad, out of his mind!

      January 10, 2013 at 10:34 am |
    • Barb

      "Yep, this IS a dark place, and satan is foaming mad, out of his mind!"

      This just shows what is so wrong with Christianity. The negativity it brings to our society is disgusting.

      January 10, 2013 at 10:37 am |
    • PRISM 1234

      Why, you've got it all wrong, Barb! The darkness, lawlessness and negativity you're talking about has engulfed our society because of DENYING God and casting Him out from our midst!
      But I won't be the one to defend today's Christanity. It has lost its flavor because of losing the sight of the One whom it should be focusing on. So, the lawlessness, rebellion and perversion rule, and today's Christianity is craving attention to get back in the mainstream of the pop-culture. This guy who wrote this article is the fitting examle. Signs of the times, eh? We surely are evolving!

      January 10, 2013 at 10:52 am |
    • Barb

      "Why, you've got it all wrong, Barb! "

      No, you've got it wrong. People are turning away from Christianity because of negative disgusting people like you. Do keep it up so we can be done with your horrible religion.

      January 10, 2013 at 10:55 am |
    • PRISM 1234

      LOL! ...... you silly, shallow-minded little girl!

      January 10, 2013 at 11:09 am |
    • Iron Sharpener

      Boris..the answer to that is: so he could be the example in human form. It's understandably questionable and hard to conceive for anyone, as well as new Christian's. I can only imagine what it was like during that time frame. @Todd..hateful bigot? If hateful bigots ever prevented you from salvation..that's a pretty weak excuse. These posts are inundated with them. It's an excuse in that whatever you lean on, as smart as you might be, I'm pretty certain it wouldn't prevent you from doing something for yourself? @Tod...very different, the Aztecs sacrifices for the "sun" to keep orbiting, Jesus was sacrificed as a gift to all that followed him, and to save you from sin. A gift for everyone..not some, not just me or you...all. @Sam Stone....that was a never ending question, because there's too many things to point out. Greed is my big one, Greed/Money, the lust for money....almost always has something to do with sin. Nobody makes you do anything, your call. @Barb...sorry you feel that way, there's a lot more disgusting in this world, but your own walk with Jesus...isn't one of them.

      January 10, 2013 at 11:33 am |
    • Pete

      "you silly, shallow-minded little girl!"

      Another lie from the xtians – 30!

      January 10, 2013 at 11:51 am |
    • cedar rapids

      'I don't like the fact that he calls Jesus the most beautiful Holy and loving person of God dirty.'

      oh wow, you are one of those he was talking about arent you? someone that thinks jesus was a bright glowing, pristine being like some living version of the man in the white suit, that didnt burp, fart or crap.

      January 10, 2013 at 12:30 pm |
    • Bob

      PRISM 1234
      As you guessed there is another evil Bob but thanks for the encouragement hope you understood. its like swatting flies here with all the atheists.

      January 10, 2013 at 1:52 pm |
    • Bob

      The only hate filled moronic replies I see is from the atheists. Your ilk are the group that is hateful, bigoted, small minded and narrow in view not acknowledging truth and living up to what the founding fathers said that there can be no morality aside from religion and you fit perfectly into this. Atheists here are off topic, nasty and hateful comments trying to intimidate those of different beliefs so who is really the hateful bigot bullies lack of caring and manners.Using manipulation to try to control another individual. The very same thing that most atheists say that they are against. Let me bring up another point about the atheist religion that the worst mass murders in history were atheists just so you know.

      January 10, 2013 at 2:04 pm |
    • foolishwolf

      Have you been on the paint thinner, again? How did Jesus stay clean? I've just had a thought, you think Jesus is white, don't you?

      January 11, 2013 at 8:13 am |
  17. 1miken1

    jesus was never sick.

    January 10, 2013 at 12:30 am |
    • sam stone

      to what do you base this claim?

      January 10, 2013 at 5:32 am |
    • Bob

      Jesus cast out demons and healed the sick was divine in power by the Spirit and they couldn't kill Him by flogging but on the cross He gave up His life so how was sickness going to touch Him? Why do you think Jesus was so badly beaten and even Pilate coming and seeing what the guards had done reprimanded them. The lashings that Jesus took would have killed a normal man but it was not His time to die. Jesus death is on the cross to fulfill all that was written and only there because the words that ring in satans ears for all eternity would never had been uttered. IT IS FINISHED, Praise the Lord for His faithfulness.
      Mat 28:18 And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.
      Mat 28:19 "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit,
      Mat 28:20 teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age."

      January 10, 2013 at 7:39 am |
    • sam stone

      wow, bob.....quotes.....thanks for the insight

      January 10, 2013 at 7:51 am |
    • sam stone

      "how was sickness going to touch Him?"

      What part of "fully human" do you not understand?

      January 10, 2013 at 9:20 am |
    • Bob

      What part of healing every sickness casting out demons don't you understand?

      January 10, 2013 at 9:40 am |
    • Bob

      Oh also forgot sinless.

      January 10, 2013 at 9:41 am |
    • Boris

      Bob, what part of "quoting the bible to prove its claims is circular reasoning" do you not understand?

      Circular reasoning is circular...

      January 10, 2013 at 9:59 am |
    • Tod

      Usually people lasted for days hung from the cross, but Jesus only lasted a few hours. That doesn't speak particularly high to his being a tough and healthy guy, now does it? Then again, he didn't work for a living. All he did for years is live off of people's generosity. He even said that people were calling him "A glutton and a drunkard". Perhaps the image we should have is of a unhealthy and obese man only able to hang from the cross for a short time due to his unusually great weight and poor conditioning. More fat Elvis than young Elvis.

      January 10, 2013 at 10:13 am |
    • sam stone

      bob: are you one who believes that sickness is due to demons?

      January 10, 2013 at 10:28 am |
    • Bob

      It speaks very well about Jesus but a person such as yourself that lacks understanding I could see how you could think that. Actually Jesus didn't die in the conventional sense He gave up His life when His purpose was finished. It was not taken from Him and nothing that happened was beyond His control if He so wanted, He could have called a legion of angels to stop or commanded any number to help but He was faithful to the purpose He was on this earth for much more than I could say for someone such as your self. Faithfulness is such a good quality.

      January 10, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
    • Bob

      Some yes,

      January 10, 2013 at 1:48 pm |
    • Tod

      People have had "faithfulness" in a great many things, right? Plenty of them have been "alternative", or "miracle" cures that only panned out to be the latest versions of snake oil. There have been hundreds of religious leaders who have generated every bit as much "faithfulness" from their followers as Jesus had only to lead them to their death, and the political cults of personality like that in North Korea have extremely damaging as well. People also had "faithfulness" in racism, slavery, burning witches, stoning heretics, and a host of other things based upon their reading of the Bible. So, surely, you are not arguing that just because someone has "faithfulness" in something, or someone that this is a virtue, right?

      You argue that Jesus simply sacrificed himself, but that also is a matter of "faithfulness". Many thousands of people were crucified by the Romans and, as far as we can tell, all of them simply fell victim to Roman authority. You propose that one of them, Jesus, could have violently escaped had he wished to. That is an extraordinary claim, like the claim that people were healed simply by touching Vespatian's robes as he passed by, so it requires extraordinary proof that it actually happened, right?

      January 10, 2013 at 7:21 pm |
  18. Chad

    Demonstrating the fallaciousness of the "reasoning":
    1. The God of Israel is fake until you prove He is real
    2. No one has proved to you that He is real
    3. Therefor, He is fake

    That line of "logic" is fallacious, because it is an:

    Argument from ignorance, also known as argumentum ad ignorantiam or "appeal to ignorance" (where "ignorance" stands for: "lack of evidence to the contrary"), is a fallacy in informal logic. It asserts that a proposition is true because it has not yet been proven false, it is "generally accepted" (or vice versa). This represents a type of false dichotomy in that it excludes a third option, which is that there is insufficient investigation and therefore insufficient information to prove the proposition satisfactorily to be either true or false.

    Here is why:

    Proposition: The God of Israel is not real.

    Argument from ignorance: the proposition (The God of Israel is not real) is true because it has not yet been proven false, it is "generally accepted".

    Conclusion: This represents a type of false dichotomy in that it excludes a third option, which is that there is insufficient investigation and therefore insufficient information to prove the proposition satisfactorily to be either true or false

    January 9, 2013 at 11:52 pm |
    • sam stone

      1. the Flying Spaghetti Monster is fake until you can prove that he is real
      2. no one has proven the FSM is real
      3. therefore, the FSM is fake

      really, chard?

      you have been punked so many times on these forums that you are getting desperate.....

      all you are convincing people of is your own lunacy.

      but, it is amusing, to a point.

      jesus is waiting. why are you here?

      January 10, 2013 at 5:19 am |
    • the AnViL

      1) the bible as serts god is real.
      2) there is no evidence to substantiate the biblical claim that god is real.
      3) there is contradictory evidence for the existence of god.
      4) there is no substantiated, empirically sound, intelligent reason to believe god exists.
      5) in spite of a lack of evidence that god is real, people believe god to exist.
      6) in spite of contradi ctory evidence, people believe god to exist.
      7) people that believe in non-existent ent ities (god) are delusional.
      8) people who have retained their critical thinking skills and understand that there are no gods as sert: (in reply to the positive additive as sertion that "gods exist") "gods do not exist"
      9) delusional people who erroneously believe in the existence of gods understand that their beliefs are threatened.
      10) delusional people attempt to use appeals to ignorance to shift the onus of evidence for the existence of gods onto those who know, and as sert – that gods do not exist.
      11) intelligent people with sound reason consistently show delusional people who attempt to use appeals to ignorance, the err of their way.
      12) delusional people fail to as similate new knowledge which would necessitate a change in their beliefs because of willful ignorance and stupidity.
      13) comedy ensues
      14) ???
      15) profit
      9001) cha cha cha

      January 10, 2013 at 6:10 am |
    • Bob

      Wow three that leading the way going to hell in a hurry. I am quite amazed at this. Not surprised but it never ceases to amaze me that they think that without knowing what they are talking about would even know if God proved anything to them. So dead in the spirit that they actually shun anything that would move them out of their hurting little world. One day in a Russian prison my friend being thrown in for preaching the Gospel brought the revelation of God to all those who were in there. He was thrown into a dark and nasty place and could have been very much afraid. But in being faithful and listening to the Lord started to pray and prayed for the people in that prison and some came to accept Jesus as Lord and even started to sing and praise the Lord. We find that even in the darkest and dirtiest of places Jesus is there calling out to those that would accept Him. Are you in prison today, do you feel like the world is on your shoulders then start to praise the one who paid the price. Ask Him to help, if you already accepted Him as Savior and if not call on Him and see what He will do for you. It is in these things we become the closest to God and find that He indeed is real and loving. As Jesus was on the cross ready to give up His life knowing all that He knew, could not even then pronounce a curse on those taunting Him. But said Father forgive them for they know not what they do. what have you three done to benefit the human race, anything? Helped the homeless, served at a soup kitchen, given money time or anything to help someone else? What a shame accusing those that do the work of the Lord and serve people and help others. Remember sometimes life gets hard and we pick up hurts along the way and this may jade us over all that life has to offer so don't be so quick to judge others or think you have the truth, because one day you may find yourself in a not so good situation.

      January 10, 2013 at 7:26 am |
    • sam stone

      "Wow three that leading the way going to hell in a hurry."

      "don't be so quick to judge others or think you have the truth"

      i would ask you if you had a sense of irony, but i do not believe sheep have that perception

      bob.....f off

      January 10, 2013 at 8:01 am |
    • Pete

      "So dead in the spirit that they actually shun anything that would move them out of their hurting little world."

      Another lie from the xtians – 27!

      January 10, 2013 at 9:54 am |
    • Grundig Glasswerks

      Chad's homies give him a shasta blasta each time he posts.

      January 10, 2013 at 10:00 am |
    • Ben

      More like
      1. All gods are myth, unless you personally believe in one.
      2. No proof was required for you to consider all other gods mere myth.
      3. Therefore, gods are considered myth in principal, and any talk of proof either for, or against their existence is moot. The "proof" is in the believing and we atheists just don't believe, so all gods are myth to us. See how that works?

      January 10, 2013 at 10:33 am |
    • Chad

      @Ben "The "proof" is in the believing and we atheists just don't believe, so all gods are myth to us. See how that works?"
      @Chad "exactly, you captured the essence of the argument from ignorance quite well.
      the problems with your reasoning:
      1. The reality of any object is independent of your belief in it.
      – you believe in it, and it isnt real
      – you dont believe in it, and it isnt real
      – you believe in it, and its real
      – you dont believe in it, but its real

      Any objects reality is independent of your belief. Simply believing something is real doesnt make it so, likewise disbelieving doesnt make it not real.


      January 10, 2013 at 10:53 am |
    • Chad

      @Sam Stone: 1. the Flying Spaghetti Monster is fake until you can prove that he is real
      2. no one has proven the FSM is real
      3. therefore, the FSM is fake

      @Chad excellent argument from ignorance! you stated it perfectly.
      Sorry, your argument on the FSM is a fallacious one.
      now, that doesnt mean that the FSM is real, it simply means that your method of proving it isnt, is fallacious (unsound, not a valid argument).

      please read the definition of argument from ignorance again! Especially the part about It asserts that a proposition is true because it has not yet been proven false, it is "generally accepted" (or vice versa).

      January 10, 2013 at 10:55 am |
    • Ben

      Yet, there is a difference between believing that something is real and knowing that it's real because you have evidence that supports that belief. We know that the earth and the sun are real because we have evidence for their existence. We know that certain people in our lives are real because we have evidence for their existence. You can say that you have a father and I would be inclined to believe you because having fathers is a very common thing, but I would not know that you have one until I see the evidence of having met him, for instance.

      However, when Christians say that they believe that they have a heavenly father I'm disinclined to believe them because such things are not only not common, but have never been proven by evidence anywhere. No actual gods have ever been proven to be real. For them to say that they "know" that they have one is meaningless without any evidence, but even saying that they believe that they have one is meaningless when none have ever been proven to be real. Again, lots of things could exist beyond my believing that they do, but I see no reason to take the leap of faith and just believe that they do exist without any good reason to think that such things are actually out there. See?

      January 10, 2013 at 5:18 pm |
    • Chad

      Evidence for the God of Abraham:
      1. The origin of the universe
      2. The fine tuning of the universe for the building blocks of life
      3. The origin of life on earth
      4. Punctuated Equilibrium: the fossil record showing species experiencing millions, 100's of millions of years of stasis (no change, random genetic mutations are weeded out of the gene pool resulting in a pool 'wobbling about the genetic mean'), followed by extremely rapid change resulting in new species appearing fully formed in the fossil record.
      5. The empty tomb, and the unshakable conviction among followers and enemies alike that they had witnesses a resurrected Jesus. A conviction they held so strongly that they went to their deaths proclaiming its truth.

      January 10, 2013 at 11:56 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Chad, the four conclusions-that-are-also-reasons you provide have been soundly refuted about a hundred times on these comment boards. Your refusal to consider the superior arguments is proof that you don't care about the reasons/conclusions you provide, nor do you care about what the facts state about your conclusions/reasons. You care about yawlping about why YOU believe. It's just not that big a deal to people who have the intelligence to actually investigate the four conclusions you list.

      You believe that your beliefs are right and cannot possibly be wrong, so you are afraid to consider the rebuttals to your positions and instead find ways to ignore them. I advise that you continue on in your willful blindness.

      January 11, 2013 at 12:02 am |
  19. fred

    I was the first fred on this blog. I still come back from time to time. God does not do that, and doesn't exist.

    January 9, 2013 at 11:36 pm |
    • Chad

      @fred "I was the first fred on this blog. I still come back from time to time. God does not do that, and doesn't exist."

      =>What investigation have you done that has lead you to the conclusion that the God of Israel does not exist?
      Let me guess, something like this:

      1. The God of Israel is fake until you prove He is real
      2. No one has proved to you that He is real
      3. Therefor, He is fake

      January 9, 2013 at 11:43 pm |
    • Grundig Glasswerks

      Chad's homies give him a shasta blasta for each time he posts.

      January 10, 2013 at 9:55 am |
  20. Moby Schtick

    Darn, I was out of the house when I could have been playing with Iron Sharpener. Maybe next time. We'll start a "roomer."

    January 9, 2013 at 10:49 pm |
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About this blog

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