Fairway to Heaven: God's golfers
Bubba Watson, Webb Simpson and their caddies pray during the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah, Illinois. They were later met by their wives, who also joined in the huddle.
June 3rd, 2013
11:54 AM ET

Fairway to Heaven: God's golfers

(CNN) Forget hitting the greens - it's the fairway to heaven which is on the minds of some of the world's top golfers.

From Augusta's Amen Corner to an Amen on every corner, these golfers practice what they preach.

Players from across the PGA Tour meet regularly at a Bible group, whose members include high-profile stars such as major champions Bubba Watson, Webb Simpson and Stewart Cink.

Each week, the group will study one particular verse, with some players such as Kevin Streelman taking that particular scripture and getting it printed onto a golf club.

For Streelman, who won his first big PGA Tour tournament at the Tampa Bay Challenge in March, his reawakening has come following a period of struggle in his personal life.

"I would lie if I said that I was previously that way," he told CNN's Living Golf.



Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Church • Sports • United States

soundoff (197 Responses)
  1. Jesus freaker

    Bubba Watson: Thank you God for helping me sink that put.

    Tebow: Thanks God for that touchdown pass..

    Parent of child that died of cancer: Thanks anyway God, I'm sure you were busy.

    June 3, 2013 at 3:48 pm |
    • derp

      "Tebow: Thanks God for that touchdown pass"

      Satan throws interceptions.

      June 3, 2013 at 4:06 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Job: Though he slay me, yet will I trust in Him.

      June 3, 2013 at 5:00 pm |
    • Wayne

      Bill, get a real job and stop bothering the world.

      June 3, 2013 at 10:00 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Dill Doe, you are such a dweeb.

      June 3, 2013 at 10:02 pm |
  2. Science

    Hey creationists ........chadie too............evukoyion wins time for the fairy in the sky to get the hell out of the bedVroooom

    New Species of Marine Fish from 408 Million Years Ago Discovered in Teruel

    June 3, 2013 — Researchers from the University of Valencia and the Natural History Museum of Berlin have studied the fossilised remains of scales and bones found in Teruel and the south of Zaragoza, ascertaining that they belong to a new fish species called Machaeracanthus goujeti that lived in that area of the peninsula during the Devonian period. The fossils are part of the collection housed in the Palaeontology Museum of Zaragoza.


    June 3, 2013 at 3:38 pm |
  3. I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

    And from the 'Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide Insurance' last weekend Webb Simpson missed the cut and Bubba Watson was tied for 29th.

    Was God resting after being busy spinning more tornadoes at Oklahoma on Friday?

    June 3, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
    • derp

      He sure wasn't busy helping Tebow in off season OTA's.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:58 pm |
  4. 19th hole

    Lordy, lordy are these goofs going to be Tee-bowing every time they make a putt?

    June 3, 2013 at 2:32 pm |
  5. Ann

    Amazing – they found a way to make watching golf on TV even more boring.

    June 3, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
    • ReligionIsBS

      WIN! Forum closed.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
    • Jax

      *Golf clap*

      June 3, 2013 at 2:53 pm |
    • Truth Prevails :-)


      June 3, 2013 at 6:05 pm |
    • Nclaw441

      i guess maybe you'd like it better if they made out.

      June 3, 2013 at 8:38 pm |
  6. trollintraining

    As much as i love the slavery and beating comments below: I just don't see the golfers hitting anyone with their clubs.
    Do they invite their caddies to the meeting for this ..... or something?

    June 3, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
    • ReligionIsBS

      Thats the whole point of mocking the bible on this forum. The article says they pick a different verse to focus on, but they obviously only pick the nice ones. Funny how they never act out all of the other BS. Almost like they know its BS or something.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:28 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Could you be any more brainwashed? Or, are you one that applies it? LOL

      June 3, 2013 at 5:56 pm |
  7. derp

    "If you look at it from a sheer numbers stand point of view, you think 'Wow maybe that God thing is working' because there are so many believers on Tour,"

    Yet for some reason god decided to make the most immoral player on the tour into the greatest golfer of all time.

    Yay god, keep giving Tiger those wins.

    Religious dimwits will believe anything.

    June 3, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
    • Alias

      Immoral and buddhist.
      Don't forget his devotion to the wise fat guy.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      It is the same mentality that has a tornado survivor crawling out from under the rubble that was their home, and thanking god for being alive, not blaming god for trying to kill him in the first place. The religious have a real problem with cause and effect relationship...the logic of evidence leading you to conclusion instead of concluding and then fitting the evidence to it.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:13 pm |
    • derp

      True, I forgot about that.

      So the philandering white chick banging mulatto/asian buddhist billionaire is the best golfer ever; and the christards think god is helping THEM.


      You can't make this stuff up.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
    • derp

      "not blaming god for trying to kill him in the first place."

      The dopes just blame satan for the bad stuff.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:18 pm |
    • Reality


      You nailed it !! Or should I say you hit a hole in one 🙂 🙂

      June 3, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
  8. Sccience

    The 666 beast chadie ?

    You know creationists...........ID believers.....chad..........The Bone !..............E =mc2 = splat.

    Messed-Up Bible Stories – 2 – Adam and Eve


    June 3, 2013 at 1:49 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      science, have you noticed what working overtime has done to you?

      June 3, 2013 at 6:00 pm |
  9. George Karlson

    The Bible does not condone the beating of slaves. It just says that if they need be beaten, this is how to do it. It may seem abhorrent now, but in that day it was a step in the right direction.

    June 3, 2013 at 1:37 pm |
    • Alias

      SO you admit that it does condone having slaves, as long as you beat them correctly?
      And this is a pooint in favor of the bible??

      June 3, 2013 at 1:45 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      A step in the right direction?
      It says that you should beat your slave hard enough that it takes at least a few days for them to die, then you're in the clear.
      Would you rather be shot in the head and die instantly, or be shot in the gut and suffer a few days of agony before dying?

      June 3, 2013 at 1:45 pm |
    • ReligionIsBS

      LOL. Yes, thats much better than saying dont own slaves and dont beat anybody. What a wonderful book!

      June 3, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
    • ReligionIsBS

      Doc, I think we'd all rather not be shot at all. Good thing we dont have a piece of garbage book telling people that they should shoot people the right way.

      June 3, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
    • George Karlson

      Who said condone having slaves?
      The Israelites were beaten as slaves and God rescued them. They are always reminded of that.
      Again, 2000 years ago, what was considered normal then is not the normal for now. The OT was given then, so the laws are pertaining to those times.

      June 3, 2013 at 1:52 pm |
    • In Santa we trust

      George, Why would god allow the Israelites to be slaves?

      June 3, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
    • ReligionIsBS

      The bible said it condones having slaves. Thats why it tells you how to beat them. If the bible did not condone having slavery, it would have said not to have slaves, it wouldnt tell you how to beat them. You cant be this dim.

      June 3, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
    • George Karlson

      Slavery was the norm. It was not something that had to be "condoned". There were people selling their own children as slaves! It was a different time in the world. 100 years from now we will not have the same outlook on things that we do now.
      If I saw someone arguing with a restaurant owner about allowing n-words use the same bathroom as us, I would think he was idiot. 100 years ago we would have looked back and said he was a hero.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:09 pm |
    • MrHighMighty

      Regarding Exodus 21:20-21, people need to remember the historical context. Slavery was prevalent at the time of Exodus, and no where in the world were there any laws restricting slaveowners rights about how they can deal with their property, until this law among the Hebrews. This is another example of how God used Old Testament law to separate His chosen people from the rest of the world. The passage's subject about the difference in how long a slave lives after being beaten was a way of testing the slaveowner's intent. In the ancient days before modern medicine, a quick death showed that the slaveowner meant to murder, but a slow death could be seen as an accidental result of discipline.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:12 pm |
    • ReligionIsBS


      So let me get this straight. An omnipotent god used to condone slavery (since he gave instructions on how to beat your slaves instead of making not owning slavery a commandment) but now he doesnt? How is that omnipotent? Sounds more like an idiot to me.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
    • ReligionIsBS


      Why didnt god just tell people not to own slaves?

      June 3, 2013 at 2:38 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      The Code of Hammurabi from Ancient Babylon has rules for slavery.
      It pre-dates the Old Testament by nearly 1,000 years.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:56 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      We have slavery today. Thanks to that invisible hand.

      June 3, 2013 at 6:02 pm |
  10. palintwit

    Tea party patriots are in a panic. First Sarah Palin gets ousted from Fox News. Now Michelle Bachman declines to run for another term. These baggers are running around their trailer parks like little lost zombies !! Ha ha !!

    June 3, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
    • Alias

      I only wish they were running out of idiots to support.

      June 3, 2013 at 1:34 pm |
  11. Akira

    So long as they're not actively trying to convert fellow golfers, who cares what they do?

    June 3, 2013 at 1:23 pm |
    • A Conversation

      Why? Are pro-golfers a special class of people who need protection?

      June 3, 2013 at 1:40 pm |
    • Akira

      Because I should think that people would not want to be distracted by anything else while they are focusing on their golf game, that's why.
      And I further think that having somebody actively trying to convert me while I *am* playing golf would be rude, that's why. Time and place matters in how receptive one is going to about ANY message, Congo.

      June 3, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
    • Akira

      *Convo. Apologies for the misspelling; FFS.

      June 3, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
    • Dan

      You obviously don't play golf, or you wouldn't be asking that dumb question, A.

      June 3, 2013 at 3:44 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      Akira, don't worry about conversion. Rock doesn't produce soil until God destroys.

      June 3, 2013 at 6:05 pm |
  12. Alias

    Athiests need to pay attention to this!
    You need to understand that having that faith and support group really can help people deal with pressure, dissapointment, focus, an improve their work ethic. In short, this type of worship really can improve their golf games and make them happier people even if they never win a tournament.
    This in no way proves a god exists, but you must acknowledge that using religion in this manor can improve the lives of the individuals in this group.
    Not everything about religion is blind faith in a book the golfers probably agree they don't fully understand. There is a lot of wisdom in the bible and it can change people's lives for the better.
    THIS is why religion will not be going away any time soon.

    June 3, 2013 at 1:20 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV


      people of faith are welcome to it. So long as believers are not proselytizing, go ahead knock yourselves out. If it works for you great.

      It is tiresome to hear sports people praising God for touch downs or a bunker shot, but as they say, "it's a free country". You are free to believe.

      June 3, 2013 at 1:53 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      See, God knew what he was doing when he wrote that book.
      Maybe you athiests should learn from THAT!

      June 3, 2013 at 1:53 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Bill D,

      which book did God write? Are you refering to the Koran?

      June 3, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
    • ReligionIsBS

      yeah bill, he knew he was telling people slavery is a good thing. Apparently, so is drowning the entire world less a couple people and animals.

      June 3, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
    • Alias

      My point, Non GOPer,
      is that religion done like it is in this article is a positive influence on people.
      Too many athiests on this blog criticise the bible and expect christians to understand and change their minds, or even give serious thought to the arguements. Most christians already know those bible passages are there and they are still christians. Those agruements are pointless.
      Religion can have real value to people in this life. God does not have to exist for this to happen.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
    • JRNY

      bill, I hear that god was short on braincells when you were born. That sure was mean of him!

      June 3, 2013 at 2:01 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      I see fake Bill Deacon is in play this morning. Odd that I would generate a poe seeing that my real opinions are controversial enough on their own. Oh well, such is fame.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:03 pm |
    • Alias

      A rose by any name would still smell as sweet,
      And a fool by any name will still make stupid posts.
      Leep posting BIlls, I'm here because of te humor I see in both of your poinst of view.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
    • derp

      "Oh well, such is fame"

      One man's fame is another man's doochebaggery.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:10 pm |
    • Your fame BD

      is more infamous, more like Jeffery Dahmer or Chuckles the Clown

      June 3, 2013 at 2:36 pm |
    • religion; a way to control the weak minded

      "See, God knew what he was doing when he wrote that book."

      LOL....ummmm god never wrote anything in that book... MEN did over a long period of time, then more MEN edited it.

      June 3, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
    • Brother Maynard

      "In short, this type of worship really can improve their golf games ... "
      So you are saying that "this type of worship" supersedes practice?
      What is the ratio? 1 hour of worship == 2 hours of practicing your putts?

      June 3, 2013 at 4:05 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      A priest went to a boxing match. "Father, if you bless me will I win the match?" "Not if you don't know how to box."

      June 3, 2013 at 5:02 pm |
  13. Djinn


    I think they are praying to the wrong god...

    June 3, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      Funny – Perhaps we should tell the Shriners.

      June 3, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
  14. Brother Maynard

    Isn't getting a hole in one on 16 just as much a part of god's plan as not hitting the fairway on 18?

    June 3, 2013 at 1:10 pm |
    • derp

      No, only satan causes a hook. Have you not been paying attention?

      June 3, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      So the slice is God's work?

      June 3, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
  15. Gary

    "Golf is a good walk spoiled."
    -Sam Longhorne Clemens

    And I say, religion is for dolts.

    June 3, 2013 at 1:09 pm |
  16. Julia

    "rose colored glasses' is equivalent to 'discernment'. What a crock.

    June 3, 2013 at 1:06 pm |
  17. ME II

    Well, if it works for them, more power to them. They haven't, until now, advertised this group, so, to each his own.

    Good luck on the links!

    June 3, 2013 at 12:43 pm |
  18. Dyslexic doG

    With all these golfers praying to God, how does he pick between them? Does he share the wins between them? Do some of them pray better than the other ones? How do they explain it when a non bible studier wins?

    Too many questions. Too many questions.

    And when faced by questions, Christians retreat into mysticism or change the subject.

    June 3, 2013 at 12:23 pm |
    • Reason Over Religion

      Shhh. Religious folk can't handle harsh reality.

      June 3, 2013 at 1:00 pm |


      June 3, 2013 at 1:03 pm |
    • A Conversation

      Yo dawg (coudn't resist)...why do you think they're praying that they win? Were you privy to the prayer? Do you think their prayer time is devoted only to (or even in part) succeeding on the links?

      June 3, 2013 at 1:10 pm |
    • MrHighMighty

      Dyslexic, seeing your understanding of God, it's easy to understand why you reject Him. Either that, or you purposely project false attributes onto God, so that you can feel better about rejecting Him.
      Scriputre never commands man to compete athletically, so why would God care about who wins man's fun and games? Scriputre tells us God loves us, and desires us to draw closer to Him, and He accomplishes that in good times and bad. In life (as in sports) there are many ups and downs, but in the end it's the final outcome that really counts. Is your game already over?

      June 3, 2013 at 1:53 pm |
    • derp

      "why do you think they're praying that they win?"

      Do you think they pray to lose?

      June 3, 2013 at 2:12 pm |
    • A Conversation

      Derp...I don't know what they're praying about–that's part of the point. But, I suspect it has very little with winning or losing. Do you honestly think those are the only subjects they (or God) might be interested in?

      June 3, 2013 at 3:42 pm |
  19. JRNY

    Looks to me like some heavy Bromance going on there. Bromance for Jesus!

    June 3, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
    • derp

      Jesus loves you on your knees

      June 3, 2013 at 2:13 pm |
  20. We say


    June 3, 2013 at 11:56 am |
    • Bible Verse for the day!

      And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
      Philippians 4:7

      June 3, 2013 at 12:06 pm |
    • ReligionIsBS

      Why do christians only study the nice bible verses. WHy doesnt anyone ever study the verses that teach you how to beat your slaves? Exodus 21:20-21

      June 3, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      @BS Because they have discernment.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:18 pm |
    • ReligionIsBS

      Discernment for what? Is that like saying they know its all BS, so they just pretend it isnt there?

      June 3, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      Leviticus 19:27
      Do not cut the hair at the sides of your head or clip off the edges of your beard.

      June 3, 2013 at 12:24 pm |
    • Ed

      Bill Deacon, more like they have secret decoder rings. You might want to look that one up...

      June 3, 2013 at 1:02 pm |
    • Glen

      And don't eat the orange shellfish with mayo on the 17th day of the lunar month while doing a handstand. I'm sure that's in the wacky Christian user guide somewhere. Or someone can read it that way.

      The bible is bogus.

      June 3, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
    • Julia

      "rose colored glasses' is equivalent to 'discernment'. What a crock.

      June 3, 2013 at 1:07 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Julia, are you saying that you can't tell the difference between beating a slave and a peaceful mind without resorting to rose colored glasses?

      June 3, 2013 at 2:05 pm |
    • We noticed

      BD, how the Westboro Baptist lot and such use Christian discernment and of course the RCC are right up there on the hypocrisy list. Have you sold of all your goods and given the proceeds to the needy? How about the Vatican selling off their sh!t yet?

      June 3, 2013 at 2:43 pm |
    • Julia

      Bill Deacon, I'm saying that your post is absurd and that you are a stupid fool.

      June 3, 2013 at 3:36 pm |
    • Terry

      Julia, Bill is a standard typical Christian con artist. He'll start asking you questions to dodge the issue, but he's been caught in that act many times, the slime. He's a sleazy one. Watch out for his tricks, best to ignore him.

      June 3, 2013 at 3:39 pm |
    • Wayne

      Ed has it right. The old decoder ring...get it from a Cracker Jack box.

      June 3, 2013 at 3:42 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      What is the issue Terry? How to determine the applicability of Scripture or how to degenerate into ridicule the fastest?

      June 3, 2013 at 5:04 pm |
    • HeavenSent

      BS, how about Exodus 21:16?

      June 3, 2013 at 6:09 pm |
    • Susan

      Scripture brings ridicule, Bill, partly because scripture is obsolete, and generally contains self-inconsistent content. it's stupid to keep pushing bible cr@p at modern folk. Fsck off with your god selling already please. We aren't buying and you are an annoyingly belligerent jerk.

      June 3, 2013 at 10:03 pm |
    • The real Tom

      And Susan nails it in one. Eat it, Dill Doe. You too, HeavenScat.

      June 3, 2013 at 10:05 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.