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My Take: An almost chosen nation
In 2009, President Barack Obama was sworn in using the same bible used by former President Abraham Lincoln. The Lincoln bible will make an appearance in this inauguration as well.
January 19th, 2013
10:00 PM ET

My Take: An almost chosen nation

Editor's Note: Joseph Loconte, Ph.D., is an associate professor of history at the King’s College in New York City and the author of The Searchers: A Quest for Faith in the Valley of Doubt.

By Joseph Loconte, Special to CNN

When Barack Obama is publicly sworn in for the second time as president on Monday, he will use two Bibles. One belonged to the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., the other to Abraham Lincoln —two of the most religious figures in American political history. Both men saw clearly the moral contradictions that tore at the fabric of American democratic life. Yet both also believed deeply in the exceptional character of the United States and the spiritual significance of its democratic mission.

In a speech to the New Jersey legislature on his inaugural journey to Washington, February 21, 1861, Lincoln reflected on Trenton’s heroic role in America’s fight for independence:

“I recollect thinking then, boy even though I was, that there must have been something more than common that those men struggled for; that something even more than National Independence; that something that held out a great promise to all the people of the world to all time to come.”

CNN's Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the big stories

Lincoln never doubted the universal appeal of the nation’s experiment in self-government, a “promise to all people of the world” that would endure across the centuries. Unlike modern liberals, Lincoln was no cultural relativist: He believed firmly in natural and inalienable rights that belonged to all people, from every corner of the globe, by virtue of their common humanity. Despite the cancer of slavery and racism that had infected the body politic, no nation was more devoted to securing those rights than the United States. Indeed, Lincoln insisted that America had a God-given role in advancing this cause in the world:

“I am exceedingly anxious that this Union, the Constitution, and the liberties of the people shall be perpetuated in accordance with the original idea for which that struggle was made, and I shall be most happy indeed if I shall be an humble instrument in the hands of the Almighty, and of this, his almost chosen people, for perpetuating the object of that great struggle.”

Lincoln’s description of America as an “almost chosen people” captured brilliantly the qualified and uncertain character of the nation’s democracy: deeply and grievously flawed, but nonetheless caught up in the righteous purposes of God. Unlike many of his religious contemporaries, Lincoln stopped short of identifying America as the new Israel; no spiritual covenant between God and the United States could be presumed. Lincoln well knew the capacity of religious zeal to poison our politics. Nevertheless, he insisted that America’s commitment to liberty and equality was consistent with the character and intentions of the Almighty.

Martin Luther King, Jr., a Baptist minister, shared Lincoln’s political theology. In a way that many liberal and secular-minded Americans would now find offensive, King wielded passages and principles from the Bible like an ax to assault the racist assumptions that degraded the lives of millions of African-Americans. Like Lincoln, he appealed to America’s spiritual legacy in order to renew its democratic mission.

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In “Letter from the Birmingham Jail,” King complained that African-Americans had been denied “our constitutional and God-given rights.” He declared that “the goal of America is freedom,” a mandate from heaven itself. Indeed, King saw the hand of God in the political fight to call America back to its founding ideals: “If the inexpressible cruelties of slavery could not stop us, the opposition we now face will surely fail,” he wrote. “We will win our freedom because the sacred heritage of our nation and the eternal will of God are embodied in our echoing demands.”

Modern liberalism scorns the very idea of “the sacred heritage of our nation.” It rejects the view of America as “an almost chosen people,” an exceptional nation devoted to political and religious ideals anchored in a transcendent cause. In this sense, Mr. Obama’s party, the party of liberalism, would not know what to do with a Lincoln or a King.

It is heartening, and symbolically important, that Mr. Obama will be using the Bibles of these two great leaders as he takes the oath of office. It would be more significant, though, if the president found room for their moral vision of the United States in his administration and in his party.

- kramsaycnn

Filed under: Barack Obama • Belief • Politics

soundoff (752 Responses)
  1. truth be told

    Drop the word "almost" we are one nation under God always have been always will be.

    January 20, 2013 at 7:47 am |
    • Saraswati

      Funny though how the words "under god" were only added to "one nation" in the paranoia of the McCarthy era. Imagine randomly adding words to any other classic writing.

      January 20, 2013 at 8:02 am |
    • stephen K

      I don't think God thinks so

      January 20, 2013 at 8:41 am |
  2. Colin

    Christians base their belief in Jesus entirely on the Bible. There is no “Bible II – A Carpenter’s Tale” or “My Worst Easter Ever – the Lighter Side of Being Grotesquely Crucified at Your Father’s Orders” to rely on. Given this, I would love to know how many Christians could answer the following questions.

    Does the Old Testament tell us anything about Jesus' life on Earth?
    Of the 27 books of the New Testament, how many do?
    Who wrote these books, what other things did they write and what reason do we have to believe what they say?
    How long after Jesus died did they write?
    Do we have the originals of what they wrote?
    Do any non-Biblical sources from within the first 100 years of Jesus life tell us anything about him?

    The answers are

    No
    Only the 4 gospels.

    We have no idea. None. It certainly wasn’t the Matthew and John claimed by the Catholic Church and very unlikely to be the claimed Luke and Mark. We have zero reason to give these 4 unknown people the instant credibility we are taught we must.

    Between 40 (book attributed to Mark) 50 (books attributed to Matthew and Luke) and 60 (book attributed to John).

    No, we only have copies of copies of copies of copies – all copied multiple times over by hand. The earliest complete copies of the gospels we have are from about 330 AD – a full three hundred years after Jesus died!! How these reflect what was written about 200-250 years earlier is an exercise in extrapolation and conjecture.

    Virtually zero. 4 passing references, two by a Jewish historian and two very oblique references by Roman administrators. No other historians, poets, philosophers, religious leaders, roman administrators or Jewish writers say anything about Jesus during the first 100 years of his death. None.

    So, those who believe in the divine/supernatural acts attributed to Jesus, including his miracles and resurrection, have to face a somewhat sobering fact. They are basing their belief on nothing more than four often contradictory and mythology-infested stories written by 4 unknown cult members in the ancient Mediterranean about a man who lived a generation or two before the authors were born. There is simply no way around this.

    Given this, any realistic Christian is forced to admit that their belief is spectacularly unlikely to be true. All of this is independent of the question of whether there is a god, of course, but to the extent Christianity is based on a belief in the divinity of Jesus Christ, it is highly likely to be based on myths.

    January 20, 2013 at 7:41 am |
    • lilyq

      You have hardened your heart therefore you can't know God.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:51 am |
    • Colin

      lilyq. No, actually I have opened my eyes. I took the time to do a bit of independent research on the issue, rather than just accepting what I was taught at face value. It is absolutely ASTOUNDING how much mythology, folklore and downright false information we are taught as young Christians about the bible. When you look at it objectively, it is almost impossible to accept its claims about a supernatural Jesus – unless one closes ones mind and wants to believe so hard that they lose objectivity.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:55 am |
    • Blake

      Actuall there are old testament references of Jesus. In Deuteronomy 18, Numbers 24 but Psalm 22 is an account of Jesus on the Cross 1000 years ahead of time. Open your eyes Colin. You have a chance to repent and be baptized today for the remission of your sins. I pray that you do.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:59 am |
    • lilyq

      You can't understand with your head what you don't understand within your heart. God is not real to you, you are right.

      January 20, 2013 at 8:07 am |
    • Colin

      Blake, please provide them.

      January 20, 2013 at 9:29 am |
    • SkepticalTexan

      lilyq, a slight misunderstanding on your part... What you "understand in your heart" is really an understanding in your mind. I presume that your notion of understanding from the heart is the ability to intuit truth based on what you believe to be true (with or without sufficient evidence). Neurological research has shown that the process of belief of truth is the same whether it is with regards to a statement like "unicorns exist" or "2+2=4."

      January 20, 2013 at 9:34 am |
  3. truth be told

    There is no Truth in the words of the so called atheist, they are by definition liars and they prove it all day very day on these blogs.

    January 20, 2013 at 7:40 am |
    • midwest rail

      As the world's most boring ( and pointless ) experiment in social media drones on...and on... and on...

      January 20, 2013 at 7:42 am |
  4. tommariner

    "Whatever we once were, we are no longer just a Christian nation; we are also a Jewish nation, a Muslim nation, a Buddhist nation, a Hindu nation, and a nation of nonbelievers." Two bibles?

    January 20, 2013 at 7:39 am |
    • Marsally

      When we have the first Jewish president or Muslim – then it will become an issue. And it will be very interesting to see how that plays out.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:42 am |
  5. Marsally

    Is there any room here to discuss the primary point of the article – American exceptionalism? I too wish Obama, someone I have supported both times, would step up and stand for something besides compromise. I consider myself more liberal than conservative, but am drawn to the conservative willingness to stand for something, even when it is something I don't support. We liberals seem unable to believe in anything.

    January 20, 2013 at 7:31 am |
  6. Origin of Life

    @nobody in particular

    Full article:
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121220143530.htm
    Enjoy
    Thanks

    January 20, 2013 at 7:30 am |
  7. stevie68a

    Religion is a lie. Grow up.

    January 20, 2013 at 7:17 am |
    • Red

      So a baby just popped out of the ocean? How did it survive? No umbilical cord because there's no woman. The baby couldn't get up and fight off an attack from the countless other hungry creatures. Elaborate on your post. I'm curious on how we weren't created by God.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:24 am |
    • Colin

      @Red, but I thought the Bible taught exactly that? That Adam and Eve just popped up out of dirt.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:29 am |
    • Red

      @Colin: Apparently you didn't read my response to you down below. I don't believe in what you claim I believe in. I've never read the Bible. Your assumptions are doing nothing.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:41 am |
    • cn

      lol red. if your god created women to give birth the way they do, you just made your deity responsible for the terrible pain that women suffer through childbirth. he must have also been responsible for the millions of babies and mothers that died during the birthing process before we tamed it several hundred years ago. mind you, the mother would have died being ripped inside out, hemorrhaging to death, and the baby would subsequently starve or simply be devoured by a wandering predator.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:44 am |
    • maturity

      So being grown up means that I close my mind to all religion, which was been the fabric of nearly every culture in world's history. Quite ethnocentric of you

      January 20, 2013 at 7:51 am |
    • Red

      Pain is part of the reason we're here. You think this is it? You think Earth is the best place? We're on punishment bro. There's a place way better than here. All of the atrocities you witness aren't in the place I'm aiming for. People who ask why would God let bad things happen are just blind as bats. One of the reasons we're here is to deal with evil. Can you pass the test or not? Earth is simply God proving a point to Satan. You're part of that point being made. And yet life is great. Even in punishment God is so gracious. It's only an 80 year test. That's nothing. Relax and enjoy the test. There's more where that came from. But we don't have to deal with the garbage after passing the test. No bills. No parental responsibilities. No sickness. No trips to the doc or dentist to check on our organs/teeth because there are no organs and teeth in the next world (the good next world that is). Don't question God why bad things happen. That's exactly how this life was designed to be. We got here this time. Well guess what? Yep, we'll "get" again. Chillax man.

      January 20, 2013 at 8:02 am |
  8. Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©™

    @ danita:
    I am absolutely happy having President Obama in office, and I have faith that persons of hate like you will eventually vanish from this joyous world that you describe as wicked.

    January 20, 2013 at 7:13 am |
  9. Tim

    Read Matthew 5:33-37

    We aren't supposed to swear on the bible at all. It's wrong to do so.

    January 20, 2013 at 7:10 am |
    • Reality

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

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

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

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

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

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

      Oaths actually go way back. See for example, see the Hammurabi Code, 1780 BC (www.fordham.edu/halsall/ancient/hamcode.asp)

      For added history regarding oaths and vows, see Wikipedia's well researched review:

      "Contents

      1 Historical development as a legal concept 1.1 Jewish tradition 13th century BCE
      1.2 Roman tradition c. 509 BCE
      1.3 Greek tradition c.400 BCE
      1.4 Christian tradition first century A.D.
      1.5 In Islamic tradition c.7th century
      1.6 Germanic tradition c.8th century
      1.7 In general 20th century law

      2 In English popular custom
      3 Types of oaths 3.1 Famous oaths
      3.2 Fictional

      4 Other meanings
      5 See also
      6 References"

      January 20, 2013 at 8:01 am |
    • realbuckyball

      What believers wrote to themselves and then called "matthew" much later, is irrelevant in 2013.
      There was no established Hebrew culture re "oaths" the in 13th C BCE. It developed MUCH later.

      January 20, 2013 at 10:28 am |
    • Reality

      From the referenced Fornham review of Hammurabi's code – 1780 BC:

      "Their deed of agreement was drawn up in the temple by a notary public, and confirmed by an oath "by god and the king."

      From the referenced Wikipedia review:

      "Jewish tradition 13th century BCE

      The concept of oaths is deeply rooted within Judaism. It is found in Genesis 8:21, when God swears that he will "never again curse the ground because of man and never again smite every living thing." This repet-ition of the term never again is explained by Rashi, the pre-eminent biblical commentator, as serving as an oath, citing the Talmud Shavous 36a for this ruling.[1]

      The first personage in the biblical tradition to take an oath is held to be Eliezer, the chief servant of Abraham, when the latter requested of the former that he not take a wife for his son Isaac from the daughters of Canaan, but rather from among Abraham's own family.

      The foundational text for oath making is in the "When a man voweth a vow unto the Lord, or sweareth an oath to bind his soul with a bond, he shall not break his word; he shall do according to all that proceedeth out of his mouth” (Numbers 30:3). According to the Rabbis, a neder (usually translated as “vow”) refers to the object, a shvua (usually translated as “oath”) to the person. The passage (Bamidbar 30:2-17) distinguishes between a neder and a shvua, an important distinction between the two in halacha: a neder changes the status of some external thing, while a shvua initiates an internal change in the one who swears the oath.

      January 20, 2013 at 11:24 am |
  10. Chuck

    Meh

    January 20, 2013 at 7:01 am |
  11. Colin

    I wish Obama had chosen the Bible of the man many regard as America’s greatest statesman, Thomas Jefferson.

    Jefferson considered the authors of the four canonical gospels to be totally untrustworthy and compiled his own bible in which he rejected the supernatural acts attributed to Jesus, including his resurrection. Jefferson instead focused on the moral and philosophical teachings of Jesus, which he regarded as the greatest moral code ever provided to mankind. It was Jefferson’s refusal to subscribe to the nonsense of the supernatural and his enlightened and deistic views that caused his opponents in the 1800 election to call him a “howling atheist.”

    Jefferson literally cut out the parts of the gospels he did accept and pasted them into what has become known as the “Jefferson Bible”. He called his work “The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth.” He described his efforts in a letter to John Adams dated October 13, 1813 as follows:

    In extracting the pure principles which he taught, we should have to strip off the artificial vestments in which they have been muffled by priests..… or, shall I say at once, of nonsense. We must reduce our volume to the simple evangelists, select, even from them, the very words only of Jesus, paring off the [ambiguities] …... There will be found remaining the most sublime and benevolent code of morals which has ever been offered to man. I have performed this operation for my own use, by cutting verse by verse out of the printed book, and arranging the matter which is evidently his, and which is as easily distinguishable as diamonds in a dunghill. The result is [a small book] of forty-six pages, of pure and unsophisticated doctrines.”

    In writing that he was extracting “diamonds from a dunghill” in excising the supernatural acts attributed to Jesus from his book, Jefferson came as close as any President of the United States to calling the gospels, well, a “pile of bulls.hit.”

    January 20, 2013 at 7:01 am |
  12. Mike

    I'm not going to enter the debate on whether there is a God. And I will also say that atheists are entltled to their opinion. I can only borrow an old cliche, to wit ... "IF you're wrong, it will be Hell to pay."

    January 20, 2013 at 6:47 am |
    • Colin

      That logic is called "Pascal's Wager."

      This is why it is a fallacy:

      a) Pascal's Wager assumes that there are only two options – the Judeo-Christian god or nothing..

      b) Pascal's Wager assumes the Christian god doesn't care whether someone actually believes, or simply goes through the motions.

      c) Pascal's Wager discounts the price paid for belief before death.

      d) Pascal's Wager vastly overestimates the likelihood of the risk times the gravity of the risk.

      a. Positing only two options is ridiculous. There are, of course, thousands of possibilities when it comes to gods. Based on the evidence available for these gods, it is not reasonable to assume one is more likely than any of the others. To increase the odds of a positive outcome of this wager, the believer would have to believe in, and worship, every possible god, including the ones that haven't been invented yet. Aside from the drain on the available time, it presents the problem that quite a few of these gods are pretty selfish. They frown upon believers believing in other gods. In some religions that is enough to not be eligible for the reward (making the belief position a lose/neutral one).

      b. One cannot “choose to believe” something. That has to be an honest conclusion drawn from the facts. I could not “choose to believe in the Hindu god Shiva or Leprechauns, for example, as that would make no sense. What I can do is SAY I believe or PRETEND to believe. But going through the motions and pretending to believe may fool your community, but it can't fool an all-knowing god. It is very unlikely that anyone would gain the ultimate reward for simply faking belief (making the belief position a lose/neutral one).

      c. The price paid for the belief position isn't nothing. It involves going through the rituals, day after day, week after week. It may have severe side effects on physical and mental health. $ex life may suffer for some, too.

      d. In estimating whether the cost of any given action is worth it, an evaluation of risk versus reward is in order. Here is where proponents of the wager say they have a leg up, as an eternity of perdition must be valued very highly. However if the concomitant likelihood is close to infinitely low, it balances out to close enough to zero to be ignored. If one were to take the believer’s approach, one should live about a mile down an abandoned coal mine, to avoid a very, very unlikely, but fatal meteor impact.

      When extrapolated to the extreme of a god, the math becomes meaningless. For e.g., if I posited a god a billion times more vengeful and gruesome than yours, would you drop your belief and run over to my super-god?

      January 20, 2013 at 6:51 am |
    • JWT

      Those proxy threats from a non-existent god always have me laughing in my boots.

      January 20, 2013 at 6:54 am |
    • Saraswati

      The use of Pascal's Wager by the Christians is the equivalent in these debates of the atheist only-need-to-prove-a-positive argument...the most boring embarrassment for their side. I suppose churches could teach how silly Pascal's Wager is...and maybe a required logic class in college could take care of the 'negative argument' myth. Reading each of these hundreds of times makes you lose any remaining hopein the human ability to think.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:07 am |
    • Origin of Life

      Evolution wins hands down, it is time for religion to get the hell out of the way.ok.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:19 am |
    • Colin

      @Sasawti? Huh? How is it possible to prove a negative like prove good/Vishn'/Santa doesn't exist? Proving a positive or challanging one for evidence of it is entirely legitimate.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:26 am |
    • Saraswati

      @Colin, It's not possible to prove either one. You could equally provide eviddence for either. Limit the scale from the universe to your closet. Claim both that a cat exists in the clost and it does not exist in the closet. Is one more allowable to evidence than the other? Now consider the universe...it's just a matter of scale of the search.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:32 am |
    • Colin

      Satraswati. Not so. I could open the cupboard and show the cat, or show that there is no cat. But, when we talk of nebulous concepts like a god, it is impossible to disprove. But, in the absence of any positive evidence for its existence, the most sane and reasonable position to take is that it does nott exist.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:39 am |
    • Saraswati

      @Colin, unfortunately, that isn't even the argument the atheists are making when they talking about negative claims...they are usually simply refering to the negation of the original. Often they'll pull out the much discredited "extraordinary claims" argument. I really want to support those who are trying to point out the flaws of Christianity, but the poor arguments make many of these folks look as nutty as the fundamentalist Christians.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:42 am |
    • Blake

      There is only one true Lord and saviour and that is Jesus Christ. Only one that the inspired word of God was written about by numerous authors accounting to the many miracles and things Jesus did. How he was crucified and rose three days later. Open your eyes and know that you have a chance today to repent and be baptized for the remission of your sins.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:46 am |
    • Saraswati

      @Colin

      "But, when we talk of nebulous concepts like a god, it is impossible to disprove. But, in the absence of any positive evidence for its existence, the most sane and reasonable position to take is that it does nott exist."

      You could as easily say "when we talk about nebulous concepts like god it is impossible to prove." What is the difference? And your assumption that is is more "sane" or "reasonable" to accept a belief, aside from saying nothing about truth values, is based purely on bias. The problem is that atheists, as much as Christians, want the answers to be clearcut and simple. No one much likes uncertainty. I find that atheists are often as likely to reject answers that question their level of confidence as are Christians, and the blinders they wear just as firmly placed.

      Don't get me wrong, I think the Christian god is inconsistent with premises most Christians hold. I just don't think that excuses atheists from accepting that they are making weak, if not faulty, arguments.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:51 am |
  13. danita

    "King" one of the most religious figures!!! Get out of here King was a natural dog.... Slept with any and everything he could. Get out of here. My dad was in business when this man was running around preaching... We never watched him growing up.

    January 20, 2013 at 6:43 am |
  14. Mike

    I have to agree on one point made in this article ... The principles of genuine Christianity have been sorely lacking in American government for a long-long time ... and they are needed more than ever before. We have long reached the point where the term "Professional Politician" is just another way of saying "White Collar Criminal." On the other hand ... I have to make one comment regarding Obama's use of the Holy Bible as part of his swearing in. He has publicly stated the US is NOT a Christian nation. Therefore, his taking an oath on the Holy Bible will be an act of hypocrisy ... and an insult to that sacred book. It will be akin to making a promise with his fingers crossed behind his back.

    January 20, 2013 at 6:40 am |
    • Oh

      it is easy to find hypocrisy in the world; watch a judgmental born again christian.

      January 20, 2013 at 6:53 am |
    • Chris

      So it is wrong to say 's we are a country of people made up of many religions.. If which christianity is just one so we must respect them all' and then honor ones own religion? Thats hypocracy? Let me say your proposition is stupid. Respectfully.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:02 am |
  15. Brampt

    No, America is not Gods nation, nor it is Israel.
    Matt 23:37- Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the killer of the prophets and stoner of those sent forth to her,—how often I wanted to gather your children together, the way a hen gathers her chicks together under her wings! But ​YOU​ people did not want it.38Look! YOUR​ house is abandoned to ​YOU.
    Matt 3:9- 9and do not presume to say to yourselves, ‘As a father we have Abraham.’ For I say to ​YOU​ that God is able to raise up children to Abraham from these stones.

    January 20, 2013 at 6:35 am |
  16. LindaH

    America is the greatest nation on God's green Earth. I believe that all presidents are ordained by God, but the question is, do thfe presidents accept their God given role? Obama doesn't, that's for sure. God bless America, and may she recover from Obama's attack on God.

    January 20, 2013 at 6:34 am |
    • Saraswati

      Why would God ordain presidents who were unlikely to take up the role he wanted?

      January 20, 2013 at 6:55 am |
    • Sane Person

      Yes, "god"favors a country that was not even in existence when his son/self was forced to die to appease himself. Newsflash : Your make-believe superbeing does not favor you, your country, your football team, or your math test. He does not choose people to do things, he does not punish people for not doing things. He prevents nothing. He causes, nothing. He cures no one. You, and you alone are responsible for your actions. When you leave this earth, it will be like the billions of people before you, and the billions that left before your god was invented.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:23 am |
  17. mike

    AMERICA, THE LAND THE DUMB the bible of abraham lincoln and martin luther king junior!!!!!!!??? Now, THAT'S THE BIGGEST BOOOOOLLLLL S*$ I HAVE HEARD IN A LONG AS TIME!. BUT, AMERICA, THE LAND THE DUMB believes it.

    January 20, 2013 at 6:32 am |
    • mike

      this is no longer the Land of The Free. This is The Land of The Dumb

      January 20, 2013 at 6:39 am |
    • Mike

      So when can we expect you to renounce your American citizenship and migrate to the Algerian desert?

      January 20, 2013 at 6:42 am |
    • mike

      mike, naaaaaaaa. is to easy to continue make millions of you dumb as ses. I'l stay for a while longer

      January 20, 2013 at 6:44 am |
    • Mike

      Have a nice day ... in spite of yourself.

      January 20, 2013 at 6:49 am |
    • smike

      lmao! thanks. I will ! I know you will not. sorry to ruin it.

      January 20, 2013 at 6:51 am |
  18. Cplf22

    Religion is for the uneducated

    January 20, 2013 at 6:31 am |
    • Mike

      President Theodore Roosevelt once said, "Ignore intellectuals. The world is full of educated fools."

      January 20, 2013 at 6:44 am |
  19. Leopold Stotch

    I wonder if the Obama's will be flashing those Satanic hand gestures again.

    January 20, 2013 at 6:28 am |
    • Sane Person

      He blinks "allah is great" in morse code with his left eye! Also, if you count the number of holes in his belt, and in his shoes, it comes out to be 666! omgomgomg!! TINFOIL!!

      January 20, 2013 at 7:52 am |
  20. Red

    LMAO @atheists. Oh OK, so a baby just popped up out of the ocean and the rest is history right???? Pathetic.

    January 20, 2013 at 6:27 am |
    • Colin

      No, silly. A god impregnated a virgin with himself, so he could give birth to himself, then sacrifice himself to himslef to "forgive" the original sin of a couple we now all know never existed. That makes SO MUCH more sense.

      January 20, 2013 at 6:30 am |
    • Red

      ???? Hah?????

      January 20, 2013 at 6:34 am |
    • Red

      I don't believe anything you posted. I have faith in God and that's it. That's where we all came from and that's where we'll all return. I'll leave all that other stuff up to people like you. I keep it simple. Nice try though.

      January 20, 2013 at 6:38 am |
    • danita

      You must have come from the Jerry Springer show... People having no faith is what led us to this wicked world and to a man like bama in power.

      January 20, 2013 at 6:49 am |
    • cn

      lmao at red. you have neither read nor tried to understand biology, evolution, or science. thanks for playing. next.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:48 am |
    • cn

      danita–as opposed to who? romney? i take it then, that you affirm that joseph smith took dictation from the angel moroni, and that there was a battle of komura in upstate new york, where the fair skinned nephites defeated the dark skinned laminites.

      January 20, 2013 at 7:50 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.