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Reality TV Goliath takes up Bible miniseries challenge, hopes for better outcome
Mark Burnett and Roma Downey on the set of "The Bible," the 10-hour miniseries Burnett produced and directed.
March 2nd, 2013
11:00 PM ET

Reality TV Goliath takes up Bible miniseries challenge, hopes for better outcome

By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor
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(CNN) - Mark Burnett is the king of reality television. His shows and spinoffs command hours of prime-time television real estate. The seal of his production company One Three Media appears at the end of “Survivor,” “The Voice,” “The Apprentice,” “Shark Tank,” “The Job” and “Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader?”

He will tell you each show was No. 1 in the time slot. He will tell you he will take on all comers in his bare-knuckle, ratings-driven world and beat them. He will tell you on any given day he has 150 video-editing systems churning through edits on his dossier, which spans the three major broadcast networks.

But if you suggest he may not have the chops to take on a massive scripted dramatic presentation of the Bible as a 10-hour miniseries, his eyes will tell you he wants to throttle you.

My bad.

Burnett and wife, Roma Downey, have been barnstorming the country like roving preachers on horseback trying to evangelize the West. Their gospel is spreading the news of “The Bible” - their ambitious project that aims to tell the story of the Bible in 10 installments. It begins its weeklong premiere on the History Channel Sunday night.

We met in the lobby of the Washington Hilton the night before last month’s National Prayer Breakfast. They were in town to speak to Washington journalists and show clips from their project.

Burnett and Downey’s project tackles the narrative of the Bible, a story woven through 66 books of the Old Testament and New Testament. It’s a story revered by billions as divine revelation – and one they’ve compressed into 10 hours of television. What could possibly go wrong?

A lot.

Many have taken aim at dramatizing the stories of the Bible. Few of those productions stood the test of time. They knew all that going in 3 1/2 years ago when “the light bulb went off,” as Downey puts it.

“It’s been a great fun journey right, Roma?” Burnett said to his wife of nearly six years.

“And we’re still talking to each other,” Downey said, smiling.

Both Downey and Burnett were raised Catholic, Burnett in England and Downey in Ireland. They still regularly attend Mass in Los Angeles. Growing up, both watched the classic Biblical films that the Hollywood of yesteryear churned out, like “The Ten Commandments” and “The Greatest Story Ever Told.”

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“In Ireland, we used to sit up and wait for John Wayne to say, ‘Surely that man was the Son of God,’ at the end of 'The Greatest Story Ever Told' every Easter,” Downey said, with her thick Irish brogue dipping into a delightfully terrible John Wayne impersonation.

After showing their kids "The Ten Commandments" with Charlton Heston, their three teenagers had one request for the Bible project. They told their parents, “Please don’t make it lame.”

Making it work

The project is personal for Burnett and Downey, coming from a deep spiritual desire for more people to see and experience the stories of their faith. As Europeans, now naturalized U.S. citizens, they are stunned the Bible is not taught in public schools.

“It was time for an updating. Adding fresh visual life to a sacred text,” Burnett said.

“People have great hearts and great knowledge but no experience of filmmaking and no budgets,” Burnett said of past telling of the stories on film and television.

“Or the resources,” Downey chimed in. “We wanted to create something that was gritty and authentic. We certainly didn’t want everyone to look like they stepped out of the dry cleaners.”

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wir4fH6hUxw&list=UUt_Q-xP9pUFpalCF-e_ZhtA&index=18]

Burnett and Downey may not have been high on the list of many studios as producers and directors to put a massive scripted project like this together. "All-Star Celebrity Apprentice" starring Donald Trump and Gary Busey is not exactly" Ben-Hur," and Adam Levine and Cee Lo Green spinning in chairs on the singing competition "The Voice" isn’t often (or ever) compared to the "Ten Commandments."

When I asked Burnett about this, he seemed genuinely insulted.

“Based on viewership, maybe I should be giving a few lessons to the people who are doing stories. Because we have five nights of No. 1 wins on prime-time television,” he started. “As a family we’ve made over 2,000 hours of American television and 8,000 worldwide.”

As he cooled down, ticking off a list of reasons why he and his wife were best suited for the job, he delved into how this project was made.

The production, he insisted, was a lot more like the production that goes into "Survivor" than nearly any feature film or television show in production.

"Survivor" typically includes a cast and crew of 400 people in a remote location with multiple helicopters and boats.

To film the Bible series, they set off for the southern tip of Morocco in Africa with a similar-size crew and hundreds of extras. Not to mention the chariots and horses.

“It was epic,” Downey said.

“Our experience with large-scale productions was very, very important,” Burnett said.

To help further bring the story to life, they brought in Lola, an Oscar-winning CGI team from London who created similar scenes for the film "Gladiator."

They went with an international ensemble for the cast because they didn’t want to distract the audience with recognizable celebrities.

Jesus was played by Portuguese actor Diogo Morgado. Many other actors came from the Theatre District in London.

An actor portrays an Egyptian slave driver in 'The Bible' miniseries

Portuguese actor Diogo Morgado portrays Jesus in 'The Bible' miniseries

The most recognizable face to most in North America will be Downey herself, who stepped into the role of Mary, the mother of Jesus. Mary is portrayed in the series as a young woman at the Nativity, then later in life.

“It was a privilege to play it,” Downey said. For nine seasons, Downey starred in the CBS show “Touched by an Angel,” then went on to star in a number of TV movies.

“The scripts at one point just said Young Mary, and then as the scripts progressed it said Old Mary. I said, ‘OK, we have to change that right now.’ The last thing I need to see is ‘Old Mary’ played by Roma Downey,” she said with a laugh. “So we changed it to Mother Mary.”

The budget for the 10 hours was under $22 million, Burnett said, a small price tag for a production on such a grand scale. (NBC paid $4 million per episode for the show “Smash” this season, according to an estimate by the New York Times)

“It’s not easy, even for us, to sell and get placed on prime time television, 10 hours – Genesis to Revelation,” Burnett said. “Do we wish we had 25 or 100 [hours], yes but we got 10. We got a great budget. It looks like it’s a $200 million movie. Of course it’s not. It’s just our combined experiences, our hearts and efforts that make it look like that.”

Getting it right

As they considered which parts of the Bible to shoot, they had to pare down hundreds of stories.

“The first decision was, it’s one story,” Burnett said. “It’s not a series of unconnected stories, it’s one grand narrative.”

“You could call it the meta narrative.”

The series encompasses five hours of the Old Testament and five hours of the New Testament.

They took many artistic liberties to compress the story lines while hoping to remain true to the story.

A public relations manager for the project described the liberties to me as “extra-biblical but not contra-biblical.”

For instance, in the series opener, the Book of Genesis stories of Adam and Eve and Noah unfold together. Noah and his family are already on the ark while the flood waters batter their boat. To calm his family, Noah tells them the story of creation: “In the beginning! ... ” Noah bellows as he runs around plugging leaks and comforting his family and the animals.

An actor portrays an Egyptian slave driver in 'The Bible' miniseries

An actor portrays an Egyptian slave driver in 'The Bible' miniseries

Similarly, in the story of David and Goliath, when David heads out to face the giant Philistine foe, he clutches his sling and quietly begins to recite the 23rd Psalm, “Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil.” David is considered the author of the psalm, but nowhere in the text of the David and Goliath story does it address what he said as he walked out to battle and slay Goliath.

The dialogue in much of the story is similarly constructed along the lines of the bare-bones text. When Jesus calls Peter to be his disciple, Peter asks, “What are we going to do?” Jesus answers, “We’re going to change the world.” Those lines never appear in the Gospel accounts, but Burnett and Downey insist it is consistent with the text.

“Every step of the way we’ve had scholars and theologians working with us,” Downey said.

Burnett and Downey consulted a wide range of pastors and academics, including a major evangelical leader and a Catholic cardinal.

Their advisory panel consisted of many people from varied backgrounds familiar with sharing the stories of the Bible rather than of a "who’s who" of Biblical academics.

Joel Osteen, a popular television preacher and pastor of the 30,000-member Lakewood church in Houston, was among those consulted. Osteen and Burnett are friends and were developing a television series together that went on the back burner during the production of this series. Osteen even took his family to Morocco during some of the filming.

“[Burnett] would send scripts our way and ask doctrinal or Bible questions about it, but a lot of it was a friendship and an advisory role,” Osteen said.

CNN Belief: Five things we learned from Joel Osteen's visit

Osteen said much of his work was confirming if the extrabiblical material stayed true to the Bible.

His encouragement to Burnett was to “use your creativity to fill in between the lines.”

Another consultant was Rabbi Joshua Garroway, an assistant professor at the Hebrew Union College and an expert on early Christianity and the Second Jewish commonwealth (circa 530 B.C. to 70 A.D.) Judaism. He was a paid consultant on the project.

“One of the issues that came up frequently in the comments was the goal of the production was to remain faithful, or at least as faithful as possible, to the narrative and text of the Bible, as opposed to a historical critical approach,” he said.

“The series is not meant to be a historical feature but as a representation of the biblical narrative which is at times historical and at times not,” Garroway said.

One reason Garroway thought he was brought in was because in parts of the New Testament, “there are less than generous depictions of Jews, Jewish leaders and Jewish traditions.”

One of several Jewish scholars involved, his role as a New Testament scholar was to help the production stay faithful to the text but also “diminish as much as possible scenes or statements that could be construed as overly negative toward Jews and Jewish judgment.”

While he thinks the project has an overall Christian orientation, “I think they did well.”

“I don’t think it will run into the same problems that Mel Gibson’s movie ("The Passion of the Christ") did because the producers have been somewhat conscientious about forestalling some of the things that could produce that effect in the Jewish community,” he said, referring to perceptions of anti-Semitism from the 2004 film.

Osteen thinks the project will have a lasting impact in churches. He plans to use pieces of the project in his services to help illustrate points he’ll make in his sermons.

“I know I’m biased because I’m their friend, but I think it’ll be something that will live on for generations because it’s done with excellence, not knocking anything else, it’s just this is production 50 years past where some of the other films were made,” he said.

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

Burnett and Downey also think this project will be their most lasting and most viewed.

Burnett said the couple have deferred all their fees for the project. They probably don’t need the money anyway. Forbes lists Burnett as among its 100 highest-earning celebrities with an estimated income of $55 million in 2012.

While the History Channel owns the exclusive North American rights to the project, Burnett and Downey own the rights to global distribution and theatrical airings, which are in the works. There is also a book tie-in, games and apps attached to the project.

For the couple, the project was not about turning a profit, though they likely will. Instead, it was about bringing new life to the stories of their faith for a new audience.

“Will it be screened in movie theaters? Yes, for sure. "Already been approached. Arenas, churches, every way you can imagine,” Burnett said.

Burnett ticked through the shows he and Downey have put together over the years. “Over the next 25 years," he said, "more people will see this than all the others combined.”

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Bible • Catholic Church • Christianity • Entertainment • TV

soundoff (2,068 Responses)
  1. David DeForge

    Well they brought the Lord of the Rings to life, why not other fantasy stories?

    March 3, 2013 at 10:11 am |
    • jkflipflop

      It's equally as silly as if someone were to start thinking LotR actually happened and we have to live by the commandments of Elrond.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:28 am |
    • are122

      Put iron (32.1%), oxygen (30.1%), silicon (15.1%), magnesium (13.9%), sulfur (2.9%), nickel (1.8%), calcium (1.5%), and aluminium (1.4%) together in a cold vacuum and let us know when they form an earth. If that doesn't work too well do the same with trace elements of the universe and let us know when they create their own planets, suns, etc.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:28 am |
    • End Religion

      We may likely be "more moral" if we tried to live by the standards of the good guys in LOTR than if we try to live by the standards of the bible. We could hardly be less moral than living by the bible's standards.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:41 am |
    • Really-O?

      @are122 –

      Really? Have you thought that through?

      March 3, 2013 at 10:43 am |
    • Cedar Rapids

      Wait, you actually believe that's a valid argument of some kind are122?

      March 3, 2013 at 10:48 am |
    • want2believe

      @are122 You clearly have no idea of the complexity of solar system formations. Do you really think those ratios are the same for every planet? And that those elements form stars? FYI stars form those elements, there is a huge diversity of elemental make up within our solar system's planets, and this is elementary school science.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:51 am |
    • Melissa

      are122m, you do realize there are more elements than that, right? Your argument holds no water.

      March 3, 2013 at 1:27 pm |
    • mark

      End you could hardly be less moral period.

      March 3, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
  2. splassher6

    and the Godless Liberals shake their fist in furry demanding that the idea makes the victims

    March 3, 2013 at 10:10 am |
    • Cedar Rapids

      I haven't got my fist in any furry.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:12 am |
    • Tea Clown

      ...as the sanctimonious Christians wag their self-righteous tongues

      March 3, 2013 at 10:14 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      *snerk*

      Splassher, do you practice shooting yourself in the foot, or is it an inborn talent?

      I'm just wondering about your moniker: did you mean "spashher," as in "splash her?"

      March 3, 2013 at 10:15 am |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Edit: "splashher."

      March 3, 2013 at 10:16 am |
    • tony

      Small furry animals don't go to church on Sundays, although they are god's creatures too. Lack of used nuts salesmen aka as priesthood in their species probably

      March 3, 2013 at 10:16 am |
  3. Faith-Isn't-a-Preacher

    This may be the first time some have actually considered a reading or viewing of the Bible.
    Will it be more than just a media production?
    An opportunity to debunk the claim by any one church to have an exclusive interpretation authority of it.

    March 3, 2013 at 10:10 am |
    • Tea Clown

      Most of the thumpers' on this blog have never read the complete Bible. This is a known statistical fact of Christians. You can tell just from the ignorance in their statements.
      -
      It must be fearful to go through life blinded by ignorance.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:13 am |
  4. Woody

    Its good to bring the reality of mans evil to life ! The bible is a book of compiled stories written by people that saw all of the evil . It is beyond me why people think it is such a wonderful book when all it is about is people killing people ! Since when was that something you would want a child to read ? Humanity truly has been brainwashed into believing religion is something good when there are so many out there that are willing to kill mass nubers of people in the name of their God, god , gods .

    March 3, 2013 at 10:09 am |
    • Cedar Rapids

      Pick and choose, pick and choose.
      My step-daughter was taught the story of Jericho and was claiming how such a great story it was of god's power. I asked her about the slaughter of all the people there and it turned out they left that part out in telling her the story.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:15 am |
  5. josh101

    It is interesting to see how the biblical story evolves. If theologist give the advice to: "use your creativity to fill in between the lines”, it can only be assumed that this is a practice that has been utilized to massage the story over time. One wonders if similar reasoning was used when the bible was written, re-written, and edited many times through history. The result, an ever more cohesive story with increasingly less historic value.

    March 3, 2013 at 10:09 am |
  6. budshot

    The word 'reality' and 'bible' do not go together.

    March 3, 2013 at 10:09 am |
  7. palintwit

    Typical Sunday... 1. Attend bible study class
    2. Watch nascar re-runs
    3. Delicious dinner at Chick-fil-A

    March 3, 2013 at 10:09 am |
    • tony

      Forgot the shooting practice at the range before the bible class

      March 3, 2013 at 10:14 am |
    • JJ

      Er..Chick-Fil-A is close on Sundays.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:52 am |
  8. Arkmark

    didn't even read the article just went right to the comments to see all of the non believers spouting off. I have to ask if you do not believe why bother reading an article that will so offend you that you must insult people who happen to believe. As has been pointed out, this country was founded on the proincipal of religious freedom and that includes the freedom not to believe. As for me to each his own. If you are a believe enjot the show and be inspired if not do not watch or watch be enetertained and maybe even inspired

    March 3, 2013 at 10:08 am |
    • Tea Clown

      LOL – Most of you bible thumpers have never read the book either. Typical self-righteous sanctimony.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:09 am |
    • budshot

      My issue is that the degree of belief by the believers has gone off the charts. And, to me, that has led to extremism in right-wing politics. The country is once again in a terrible position due to the lack of education by so many individuals, due to a hatred of the president because of his race, due to a 'demonizing' of anyone not extremely to the right. There is a religious fanaticism to politics that matches the religious fanaticism of so many believers in the US now.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:12 am |
    • Matthew

      I'm also free to call people stupid. So I am.

      Freedom of speech goes both ways. So this is me exercising my freedom of speech. Stop living with a bronze age myth.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:12 am |
    • Wrathbrow

      I support yours and others rights to believe and observe in your own place in your religion or other beliefs. But that does not mean I believe people should be silent on and not comment on what they see and hear.
      Here is the other part. Which is more severe, telling people their myth beliefs are wrong and they are foolish, or telling someone they are going to suffer mental and/or physical pain for eternity.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:19 am |
    • want2believe

      What's the difference between some of the non-believers spouting off and your little rant?

      March 3, 2013 at 10:26 am |
    • Arkmark

      I wish i could respond to individuals

      Tea Clown -II am not a believer - AT most I am agnostic. YOU are the sanctimonious one for assuming such

      Mathew so are you I have had some really bad church ( as opposed to religious) experiences and I do not know if you have had any but If you do not believe and never have you will never get "It" so just keep your anger at religion to yourself

      BUd shot - People like me do not "HATE ht epresident we hate his policies and they have NOTHING to do with his skin color and OBTW he's half white ( remember that??) You almost never hear that .

      Wrathbrow neither are more severe. To tell someone they are a fool" only closes the conversation and you will never be heard. to say they will suffer for eternity is part of the "Faith system" and if you do not "believe you'll never understand

      March 3, 2013 at 10:35 am |
    • Cedar Rapids

      Make your mind up arkmark......you claim to be agnostic at best and yet claim that if others were not believers then they would never get it,
      And they have just the same right to spout off against religion as you do to spout off against nonbelievers

      March 3, 2013 at 10:52 am |
  9. Lisa

    Thank you so much for making this mini-series. I cannot wait for tonight and the following Sunday's to come. For my self, my family and freinds having faith is about a relationship, not a religion. With the current obsession of all things are ok except your Christian Faith, this will be a breath of fresh air into a media outlet that is filled with garbage. Hopefully some will understand that while these events have shaped the faith of so many, all of the people in the bible come with history and historical facts. Thank you Mark and Roma, God Bless!

    March 3, 2013 at 10:08 am |
    • FreeFromTheism

      "With the current obsession of all things are ok except your Christian Faith"
      that's a new one to me?
      Then again, Christians claim to have been persecuted ever since the character of Jesus showed up; so, I am not surprised...

      March 3, 2013 at 10:15 am |
    • Wrathbrow

      Saying something is a fact does not make it so.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:21 am |
    • Cedar Rapids

      Yeah Lisa because heck knows Christianity keeps quiet in the US and you never hear of huge lobby or church groups trying to influence policy or have political candidates falling over themselves to declare just how Christian they are or anything, right?

      March 3, 2013 at 10:54 am |
  10. Tyler

    Guarantee that you wont see the passage about God killing 42 children with bears for calling a guy bald, in this series. Wonder how many people will stone their children for being disobedient? You think they will devote an episode to what the bible says you can and cant do to your slaves?

    March 3, 2013 at 10:07 am |
  11. ksocreative

    the greatest trick the devil ever pulled was writing the bible.

    you know... if you believe in devils and all. lol. 😉

    March 3, 2013 at 10:07 am |
  12. Graham Ginsberg

    Catholics believe that Jesus is God. That Jesus was a Jew. That continue to deny that the religion of Moses and his followers even had a name. Both Catholics and Jews do not emphasis or recognize the religion of Moses because their are equally fearful of it.

    March 3, 2013 at 10:06 am |
  13. jkflipflop

    The Bible isn't taught in school because it's a bunch of made-up fairy tales. If you personally want to lie to your child about everything like God, The Easter Bunny, and Santa Claus then that's on you. Don't make the rest of us pay to lie to your kids.

    March 3, 2013 at 10:06 am |
    • FreeFromTheism

      just make sure to remember to tell your kids that "it's just a movie", and that "it's not real" and all the stuff you usually tell your kids about stuff you see on tv

      March 3, 2013 at 10:09 am |
    • jkflipflop

      I was referring to the line in the article "The project is personal for Burnett and Downey, coming from a deep spiritual desire for more people to see and experience the stories of their faith. As Europeans, now naturalized U.S. citizens, they are stunned the Bible is not taught in public schools."

      We don't teach the bible in school for the same reason we don't teach the Koran, the Mahabharata, or Egyptian Petroglyphs. . . . it's all made up fairy tales.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:14 am |
    • are122

      LOL...I see you don't read too many books on physics. The last one I read "Knowing the Mind of God" along with others concluded there had to be a creator....tho I'm sure you think Darwin probably formed the universe and wrote the physics and mathematics to make everything work.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:15 am |
    • FreeFromTheism

      sorry, that reply was meant for 'Mark in ct', my bad

      March 3, 2013 at 10:16 am |
    • FreeFromTheism

      @are122
      how can you know about the mind of a fictional character? The same way you would know about what batman or superman thinks ... you make it up after you define certain characteristics of the object
      now, the fact that a TINY minority of physicists CLAIM that a god is necessary for anything to begin, is just that... if it's such undeniable proof, how come the vast majority of respectable physicists are atheists?
      Obviously, there is something wrong with the "proof".

      March 3, 2013 at 10:20 am |
  14. Mark in ct

    Mark Burnett! I can't wait to watch this with my kids. I hope it will become an Easter tradition for the next generation. Thanks to you and your wife for using your talents this way. It's a courageous act! God bless!

    March 3, 2013 at 10:06 am |
  15. GO_GOP

    I believe Christianity is the only true religion on earth since it is based on the Bible which is the word of our Lord in heaven. He sent his Son Lord Jesus to die for our sins. We ignore HIM at out own peril. Scientists say all the complicated stuff like nothing can go faster than light (light is everywhere; if there is speed of light how can it be everywhere), quantum theory which says a thing is both a wave and a particle (how absurd is that!!) and that we came from Monkeys and Chimpanzees (but we do not have a single record of a Monkey or Chimpanzee turning into a human being). They say they have proof but offer complicated equations and other stuff 99.99% of people do not understand. How funny is that? Seek our Lord and be saved. Science is but a tool of Satan to take us away from our Lord, for all we know.

    March 3, 2013 at 10:05 am |
    • Follix

      Trolling grade: C+

      March 3, 2013 at 10:06 am |
    • FreeFromTheism

      "the Bible which is the word of our Lord in heaven"
      prove it

      March 3, 2013 at 10:07 am |
    • jkflipflop

      Just because you are too dumb to understand science doesn't mean it's false. It just means you're too dumb to understand it.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:08 am |
    • mcp12

      "single record of a monkey turning into a human being"

      WOW.... your intellectual prowess is legendary. No wonder why the GOP lost.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:08 am |
    • Tea Clown

      Aww, can you smell the arrogant sanctimony and self-righteousness?

      March 3, 2013 at 10:08 am |
    • David DeForge

      I prefer Shiva, got more arms don't ya know. Must be a better God.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:13 am |
    • want2believe

      Haha I'll just have fun with this. I respect your right to the religion of your choice but please educate yourself. Light is traveling everywhere. It just doesn't exist as a stationary object. When you look up at the stars, you're not looking at them as they are at this very moment. You are seeing the light from those stars from however many light years they are from us, thus you're looking into the past. Quantum theory says objects can have properties of both particles and waves, if you hadn't noticed a lot of research is currently conducted to better understand this. Scientist don't claim to know all the answers. We did not come from monkeys and chimps...humans, monkeys, and chimps all evolved from a common ancestor. It may take awhile to find this fossil if we ever do...you would know that if you understood how unlikely it is for an animals remains to actually become fossilized. It is not the scientists fault you don't understand. There are plenty entry level books that explain such phenomena. By all means seek your lord, but educate yourself as well. Some scientists, while I may not agree with them, by studying the complexities of our world/universe have actually strengthen their beliefs. Don't be scared of a little knowledge.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:35 am |
    • Cedar Rapids

      Think you will find it was a sarcastic post folks.

      March 3, 2013 at 11:00 am |
    • WhatDidTheySay

      That is beyond ignorant.

      March 3, 2013 at 11:02 am |
  16. conscious citizen

    Makes sense. After all, it's just another "reality" show.

    March 3, 2013 at 10:04 am |
  17. palintwit

    Tea Party Patriots are still mourning the loss of Peggy Rea, the actress that played Boss Hogg's wife

    March 3, 2013 at 10:03 am |
  18. AEvangelista

    The truth is the Bible is wrong, and the atheists are wrong. The truth is "it's complicated." The Bible is full of holes, but even scientists today believe there are other dimensions, and it will be a long time before we can break out of our puny three dimensions. The best approach is to remain open to the possibilities, and don't ever think you have it all figured out, because you don't.

    March 3, 2013 at 10:02 am |
    • Tea Clown

      ...everybody has their own form of delusions

      March 3, 2013 at 10:04 am |
    • FreeFromTheism

      granted, you're assuming that atheists think they have it figured out... which is blatantly false, at least for all the atheists that I know
      also, there are actually 4 dimensions (time counts as one)

      March 3, 2013 at 10:06 am |
    • jkflipflop

      Quantum theory states there are actually 19 different dimensions or states of "reality".

      March 3, 2013 at 10:09 am |
    • Richard Cranium

      Most quantum theories (string theory) work with 10 dimensions, M theory has it at 11.
      No theory that has credibility has 19 dimensions.
      States of reality are seperate from dimensions.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:25 am |
  19. Graham Ginsberg

    Nothing but more propaganda denying the religion of Moses ever existed, the most important, the God chosen religion, the religion the was the cornerstone for 3 major religions that spawned from it.

    March 3, 2013 at 10:02 am |
    • Tea Clown

      Um, which "god" again? Buddha, Jehovah, Zeus, Confucius, etc, etc? You folks need to specify your god's name because it gets too confusing in your diverse country with freedom of religion.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:06 am |
  20. Melissa

    Gee, because it couldn't possibly be any different than the other 50 million times hollywood has done this. Sarcasm if you can't tell. Enough of the obsession with religion already.

    March 3, 2013 at 9:59 am |
    • Tea Clown

      But it's so dog-gone profitable – and there are so many gullible customers. 🙂

      March 3, 2013 at 10:03 am |
    • whocares

      Tea Clown is right...if you want to make real money, you have to start a cult.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:11 am |
    • jkflipflop

      Lord Elrond Hubbard started elven scientology. It's the second biggest religion in Middle Earth.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:20 am |
    • Melissa

      Yeah well, they're all nuts. Religion causes the most pain and suffering on the planet.

      March 3, 2013 at 10:37 am |
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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.