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Do Christians, Muslims and Jews worship the same God?
September 1st, 2013
03:26 AM ET

Do Christians, Muslims and Jews worship the same God?

Opinion by Jeffrey Weiss, Special to CNN
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(CNN) - Pope Francis surprised Israeli and Palestinian leaders last month when he invited them to a special prayer ceremony at the Vatican this Sunday - not least because religion has often been the source, not the salve, of the region's conflicts.

Still, Pope Francis offered his "home" - the Vatican - as the perfect place to plea for some divine assistance, and Israeli President Shimon Peres and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas dutifully agreed to attend.

"The Pope has placed it in this perspective: Prayer is like a force for peace,” Vatican Secretary of State Archbishop Pietro Parolin told Vatican Radio.

"We hope that there, where human efforts have so far failed, the Lord offers to all the wisdom and fortitude to carry out a real peace plan."

But Sunday's special ceremony at the Vatican raises an interesting question: When Francis, Peres and Abbas bow their heads in prayer, will they be talking to the same God?

After all, Jews, Christians and Muslims all trace their faiths back to a fellow named Abraham, whom they all claim was chosen for special treatment by the Almighty.

Not academic

The “same God” question is one theologians have hammered at for as long as there have been enough religions for the query to make sense.

The question is hardly academic, though. In fact, a number of politicians, religious leaders and scholars have expressed hope in recent years that a convincing answer on the God question might dampen the violence committed in His name.

Yale Divinity School theologian Miroslav Volf recently edited a book titled “Do We Worship the Same God? Jews, Christians, and Muslims in Dialogue.”

In the introduction, Volf explained why the title question matters:

"To ask: ‘Do we have a common God?’ is, among other things, to worry: ‘Can we live together?’ That’s why whether or not a given community worships the same god as does another community has always been a crucial cultural and political question and not just a theological one."

On the other hand, there’s CNN Belief Blog contributor and Boston University religion professor Stephen Prothero.

His book on this subject is titled “God Is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions That Run The World.”

Prothero writes:

“For more than a generation we have followed scholars and sages down the rabbit hole into a fantasy world where all gods are one … In fact this naive theological groupthink – call it Godthink – has made the world more dangerous by blinding us to the clash of religions that threaten us worldwide.”

In the world of politics, President George W. Bush asserted the unity side of the argument more than once in the years after the 9/11 attacks - often as a way to deflect accusations that America was at war with Islam.

Bush told Al Arabiya television, “I believe there is a universal God. I believe the God that the Muslim prays to is the same God that I pray to. After all, we all came from Abraham. I believe in that universality.”

Pope Francis invites Israeli, Palestinian leaders to Vatican peace talks

Pope John Paul II drew from the same rhetorical well several times.

“We believe in the same God, the one God, the living God, the God who created the world and brings his creatures to their perfection,” he first said in a speech to Muslims in Morocco in 1985.

Looking for a more recent example? Consider the plight of Vatican envoy to Malaysia.

Shortly after he arrived there last year, Archbishop Joseph Marino said that is was fine by him that Christian translations of the Bible into Malay use the word “Allah” for “God.”

“Allah” is, of course, the Arabic word for God and is found in the Quran. The Christian translators explained that since most Malaysians are Muslim, it’s the word they’re most comfortable with and therefore the best choice for the translation.

But many Muslim authorities in Malaysia were furious. They say Christians are slipping in the familiar word as a way to convert Muslims. And conversion of Muslims is all but illegal in Malaysia.

There’s a lawsuit ongoing about the translations. Marino had to apologize for pushing into Malaysian politics.

Points of disagreement

So what do the “Abrahamic” religions disagree about?

Among other things: the purpose of humanity, the relationship of God and humanity, sin, forgiveness, salvation, the afterlife, Jesus, Muhammad, the calendar, and the religious importance of Abraham himself.

Plus the nature of God.

Any summary will leave out enormous nuance. Internal divisions within religions have fueled some of the worst examples of human violence. Consider the long and frequently bloody history of troubles between Catholics and Protestants or the growing death toll of Muslim-on-Muslim attacks.

But there are common elements about God widely accepted in each tradition.

Judaism

Start with Judaism, since it came first and established roots that carried into the other two.

Jewish tradition teaches that there is one and only one God, creator of everything, and He established physical and moral laws. As Judaism’s preeminent prayer says: “The Lord our God, the Lord is one.”

This God walks and talks directly with His creations – for a while.

Eventually, He chooses one particular nomad (Abraham) to father a mighty nation that God sets up as an example to other nations.

This God likes the smell of burning meat and demands other extremely specific physical offerings as evidence of obedience and repentance. And He gives His chosen people a particular set of laws – but doesn’t mind discussion and even argument about those laws.

A famous rabbinic saying implies that every word in Judaism’s sacred texts can be understood in 70 correct (but related) ways. And human reasoning can even trump divine intention. (No kidding. It’s in the Talmud)

This God judges His people every year. Tradition says he’s willing to accept imperfection, as long as it comes with repentance.

He’s big on obedience, not so much on faith. He’s not nearly as attentive to the behaviors of non-Jews. (There’s a famous Jewish joke with the punch line “Would you mind choosing somebody else once in a while?”)

Tradition holds that there’s a World To Come after death where moral accounts will somehow be settled. But this God is vague on details.

Christianity

The most obvious differences in the Christian God are the traditional teachings about the Trinity and Jesus. God is three separate persons who are also one. How? Christianity says the Trinity is a “mystery” of faith.

According to Christian tradition, God begets a son who is somehow also Him but not Him to atone for Original Sin. He sacrifices that son though a brutal death and thus achieves humanity's salvation.

But the son, who also is God, rises from the dead. And that sacrifice redeems eternally all who accept and believe in it. Faith, not behavior, is the essential measure of salvation.

This God is willing to vastly expand what it means to be among His “chosen people.” He’s also willing to cancel many of the laws that had applied to that chosen group for this expanded membership.

Orthodox Jews say that God prohibits them from eating a cheeseburger; Christians say God has no problem with them wolfing down Big Macs.

Unlike the Jewish God, whose instructions are almost all about this world, the Christian God is focused more on eternal salvation: heaven and hell.

Finally, for this God, much of the Jewish scriptures (which are all God’s word) are actually about foreshadowing Jesus. Including Abraham.

Islam

The Muslim God is a bit more like the Jewish God.

There is no Trinity in Muslim tradition. Jesus was a prophet, but no more divine than other prophets.

God has never has had anything like physical attributes and has no gender. (Some Muslim commentators say that the noun “Allah” is masculine, but only in the way that all nouns in some languages include gender.)

Muslim tradition holds that God wants one thing from humans: Submission. The word “Islam” is defined as “submission to the will of God.”

For Muslims, all true prophets in Jewish and Christian traditions were actually Muslim because they knew to submit correctly to God. Differences between Muslim, Jewish and Christian interpretations of God are due to errors that crept into the other two faiths, Islam teaches.

The Muslim God, like the other two, initially demanded that Abraham sacrifice a son. But the Muslim God wanted Abraham’s son Ishmael, not Isaac, who Jewish tradition holds was offered as a the sacrifice.

The Muslim God also designated, from before the world began, a perfect man to be his final prophet: Muhammad. God’s perfect truths are found only in the Quran and in the sayings of Muhammad, the hadiths.

And the Muslim God, like the Christian God but unlike the Jewish God, will welcome believers to paradise and condemn many non-Muslims - exactly which ones is a matter of much discussion - to eternal torment.

Final answer

So do Christians Muslims, and Jews, really all worship the same God?

In two major volumes on the subject recently published by scholars from various faiths and traditions, including Volf’s, the most inclusive response from these scholars is basically: Yes, and it’s our God.

This is not a new way of answering the question.

In 1076, Pope Gregory VII wrote this to a Muslim leader: “We believe in and confess one God, admittedly, in a different way…”

But like many other religious leaders on all sides of the argument, Gregory insisted that his version of the Almighty is the one whom the others are unknowingly and incompletely worshiping.

A less exclusivist set of religions might shrug off the differences. But all three claim to have the only “True Faith.”

So do all three faiths actually worship the same deity, whether they call him God or Allah or Adonai?

God only knows.

Jeffrey Weiss is an award-winning religion reporter in Dallas.The views expressed in this column belong to Weiss. A version of this story first ran in September 2013. 

CNN's Daniel Burke contributed to this article. 

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • History • Islam • Judaism • Muslim • Religious violence • Torah • Vatican

soundoff (7,438 Responses)
  1. John P. Tarver

    These atheist folks are the cause of science being suppressed. When Einstein presented General Relativity to the Swedes they rejected him, due to a fascist social/political agenda. Einstein manufactured the photon to make fools of relativity deniers and it still works today. Eighty years on now we are excluding the atheist nonsense from science.

    September 2, 2013 at 12:30 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      JPT
      You have been saying this for a very long time now. It was not true when you first said it, you have never shown any true basis and what you have shown, has been proven false. Do you have anything new or are you going to continue to claim some atheist consiracy without evidence?

      September 2, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
      • John P. Tarver

        I have repeatedly show the basis of my knowing atheists oppose science. This week I even posted up 2 different URLs with groups of physicists proving there is no dark matter and no black holes. Now get along down the road dick brain.

        September 2, 2013 at 1:10 pm |
        • Akira

          Were they from Regent and Liberty Universities?

          September 2, 2013 at 1:45 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          Ahh, personal attack now, terrific. Keep showing your complete lack of credibility.
          You never provided anything of note to back up your atheist consiracy theory, and you do show an increible lack of understanding for someone who claims a MSEE.

          September 2, 2013 at 1:53 pm |
    • bostontola

      More lies from JPT. Look it up for yourself.

      September 2, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zwc1Wi-mlCI

      September 2, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
    • What is going on? FREEDOM

      Continuing the lies of evolution being false I see. You have already been proven wrong multiple times about evolution being false. You are just closed-minded due to the fact you don't wish to destroy your religion.

      September 2, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
    • Doobs

      Keep posting this. It shows how happy the religious are to lie for Jeebus.

      September 2, 2013 at 12:50 pm |
    • truthprevails1

      JPT: You need to be medicated. You're facebook page and your rants here show how pathetically uneducated in actual facts you are. You're a conspiracy theorist who believes every little story told to them....kind of like a 5 year old child. You can claim to be educated all you wish but my guess is you failed miserably. I would suggest getting an education and finishing this time before trying to communicate with adults who are living in the 21st century.
      You screwed up yesterday with your exceptionally long rants posting the hate and false blog info...you forgot to change your name on those and as always they disappeared.

      September 2, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
      • Akira

        Really? I missed that. What other name was he posting under?

        September 2, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
        • truthprevails1

          He's the one who keeps posting those long rants that list some blog over and over and over again...yesterday he didn't remove his 'John P Tarver' alias, usually he just posts using random letters as the alias.

          September 2, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
        • Akira

          What? The Venezuelan Brain guy?? Say it isn't so!
          Although I have seen the Venezuelan guy post on other CNN blogs, and he has stolen other user names to post his rot. That could have happened here.
          In any case, JPT is wrong, as usual.

          September 2, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
  2. Chadburn

    Not all Christians believe in the Trinity. Some of us believe in God, Jesus (his only begotten son), and the Holy Spirit. Some of us believe these three are separate.....not one in the same.

    September 2, 2013 at 12:30 pm |
    • Will

      That is a matter of opinion, I believe that the Trinity is one of the fundamental teachings of Christianity, and if you don't believe in it, then you are not really a Christian. That is just my opinion, but I bible that the Bible is clear that the Trinity is a fact

      September 2, 2013 at 12:36 pm |
      • Redoran

        Your buybull was written by itenerant Hebrew goat herders. You really, really, expect me to believe it??? LOL!

        September 2, 2013 at 12:46 pm |
        • Will

          Except that God was the one who wrote, the "goat herders" just wrote down what He said.
          What do you believe?

          September 2, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
        • Doobs

          If that's the case, he should have picked goat herders with better administrative and proofreading skills.

          September 2, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
        • Will

          Why, are you saying that there is something wrong with the Bible?

          September 2, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
        • Sue

          The bible is chock full of errors. A little googling will demonstrate that for you, Will. Grow some courage and do your homework before you try to defend your pathetic holey book here.

          September 2, 2013 at 2:51 pm |
        • Will

          I have and like I've said before, there is no basis for any of it

          September 2, 2013 at 2:53 pm |
        • Sue

          Will, enough of your nonsense. Explain how the bible says that diseases propagate, and try to rationalize that.

          September 2, 2013 at 3:40 pm |
        • Will

          What does that have anything to do with what we're talking about?

          September 2, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
        • Sue

          Will, it is a test of your claims. Find enough courage to take on the challenge. Again, how does the bible claim that diseases propagate?

          September 2, 2013 at 7:17 pm |
        • Will

          I already asked you, what do diseases have to do with the original question? Answer that and I'll tell you

          September 2, 2013 at 7:50 pm |
        • Sue

          Will, stop your cowardice and respond directly. This is a test of your claims about the bible and science, and the accuracy of the bible, as well as of your own bible knowledge, which I suspect is lacking. Try to find enough courage to take on the challenge instead of wimping out again.

          Again I ask you, how does the bible claim that diseases propagate?

          September 2, 2013 at 8:56 pm |
        • Will

          Ok, now I understand why. And well, I am assuming that this is a trick question, but I regardless, I believe that God spreads them. He controls all of nature and is sovereign in all things
          I will mention that I can't recall reading any verse about diseases in the Bible, but regardless, I will play along

          September 2, 2013 at 9:57 pm |
      • Essjay

        Will: do a little more research and you will find that the Godhead is only God and the "Word". The Holy Spirit comes later. This is something most of us who were raised in Christian churches do not know.

        September 2, 2013 at 12:50 pm |
        • Will

          I have done more than a little research and it has only made me believe more firmly in the Trinity

          September 2, 2013 at 12:54 pm |
        • joe

          I have done more than a little research and it has only made me believe more firmly in the Trinity
          ------
          A Christian's idea of research is to go to a church and be lectured to by a Preacher.

          September 2, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
        • Will

          No, I actually read the Bible, it is the ultimate source of truth, not preachers. If you take the time to look in your Bible, assuming you have one or on an online Bible, you'll find that the Trinity is everywhere

          September 2, 2013 at 1:04 pm |
        • joe

          No, I actually read the Bible, it is the ultimate source of truth,
          ------
          Your bible is rife with errors and inaccuracies. Funny how the religious go to it for religious advice but not medical or engineering etc. Why? Because, the writers had no answers. Think about it.

          September 2, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
        • Will

          When you say, "Your bible is rife with errors and inaccuracies," do you mean that all Bible are or just mine?
          And that's because the Bible wasn't written as an engineering or medical textbook, it was written to show people God's love and how they can know Him

          September 2, 2013 at 1:59 pm |
        • joe

          And that’s because the Bible wasn’t written as an engineering or medical textbook, it was written to show people God’s love and how they can know Him
          -----
          You are now making excuses for why your bible has inaccuracies? What, your all knowing God now can't write down correct statements about his own creation?

          September 2, 2013 at 2:05 pm |
        • Will

          You totally just disregarded that statement, js. And you didn't answer my question either
          And what are you even talking about, I don't believe that there is anything false in the Bible, prove me wrong

          September 2, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
        • joe

          you have the internet. Type in biblical errors in your favorite search engine and start your search for truth.

          September 2, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
        • Will

          I have before, they're not grounded

          September 2, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
    • Vic

      The Holy Bible does not mention the word "Trinity" but so many verses collectively show that God is One of Three, One Godhead, Three Persons, Father, Son (Lord Jesus Christ) and Holy Spirit.

      September 2, 2013 at 1:37 pm |
  3. Tracey

    If you worship ONE God yes then you worship the same God

    September 2, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
    • joe

      If you worship ONE God yes then you worship the same God
      --------
      Hah? What kind of logic is that?

      If you worship one super hero, then you worship the same super hero. So Spiderman is now the same thing as Superman?

      September 2, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
  4. 1word

    The Christians worship Jesus Christ. He was Yahweh in the flesh. The Jews are still waiting on their messiah. The Muslims worship Allah. Jesus is the only one who claimed to be one with the Father, and the way to the Father. Jesus said he is the way the truth and the life. No other prophet or man of God made those claims except him, and that being said Jesus was the only one who claim to forgive sins. Only God can forgive sins. I accepted Jesus into my life and I know he has cleansed me from all my sins and gave me a new lease on life. Those other religions don't have people being healed like that. So no they don't worship the same God if they did, they wouldn't be killing one another. Jesus said we should not Kill.

    September 2, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
    • tony

      I doubt many others see you as cleansed o past sins and no longer accountable.

      September 2, 2013 at 12:32 pm |
      • 1word

        Once we receive Jesus, he forgives our sins past and present. We can always go to him for forgiveness. When you truly love him, you will live a life pleasing in his sight.
        Isaiah 54:17
        No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of me, saith the Lord.

        September 2, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
        • What IF

          1word,

          That is an ancient pep / war rally cry. We numbah ONE!

          Is that the same "Lord" who gave instructions about how to use magic water to find out if wives were unfaithful... by causing their thighs to rot and their bellies to swell if they were guilty? That "Lord"?

          September 2, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
        • ramondhoward@yahoo.com

          Lol

          Sent from my HTC One™ X, an AT&T 4G LTE smartphone

          September 2, 2013 at 1:08 pm |
        • 1word

          I don't know where you get that from, what scripture did that come from?

          September 2, 2013 at 12:44 pm |
        • What IF

          Is that the same "Lord" who gave specific instructions about how to cure leprosy by killing a dove and dipping a live dove in its blood and letting it fly around... and anointing the sufferer on the toe with the dove's blood? That "Lord"?

          September 2, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
        • 1word

          I Don't know what Bible you're reading.

          September 2, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
        • joe

          Once we receive Jesus, he forgives our sins past and present
          -----
          God puts a fruit tree in front of the first woman knowing she's going to eat the fruit. When she does eat the fruit God then curses all of mankind because of it.

          You got to be some kind of short bus to believe such an absurd story.

          September 2, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
        • What IF

          1word,

          Thigh rot story from Numbers 5.

          Leprosy cure from Leviticus 14.

          And then there is that "Lord" who told Jacob how to breed striped goats by having the mating parents stare at striped objects. Genesis 30... That "Lord"?

          September 2, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
        • 1word

          Joe, did anyone had to teach you how to lie? Why is that? The stories of the Bible is history, yes I believe it.

          September 2, 2013 at 1:06 pm |
        • joe

          Joe, did anyone had to teach you how to lie? Why is that? The stories of the Bible is history, yes I believe it.
          ------
          Do some research. No contemporaneous evidence of Jesus. None. Zero. Zilch. God comes to earth, magi pay It a visit, a star stops, a king tries to kill all boy babies, it brings dead to life, gives great lectures etc. etc. and not one writing, one piece of jewelry, one clay tablet, one letter about It the entire 30 years It's on earth.

          It takes 5-10 generations and writers who weren't even there to write about it in another language in in another land.

          September 2, 2013 at 1:22 pm |
        • Doobs

          I don't know where you get that from, what scripture did that come from?

          I'm not surprised. Your preacher man isn't going to build one of his come to Jeebus sermons around them anytime soon.

          September 2, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
    • joe

      Only God can forgive sins.
      -----
      Your are just playing silly little mind games with yourself.

      time to grow up. There is no invisible sky fairy running your life.

      September 2, 2013 at 12:33 pm |
      • 1word

        Joe, because you don't believe in God doesn't mean he is not real. Everything has a creator. There is nothing made that was not made.

        September 2, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
        • joe

          Joe, because you don’t believe in God doesn’t mean he is not real. Everything has a creator.
          ----–
          If everything has a creator, then your creator has a creator and that creator has a creator ad infinidum.

          Of course, I already know your comeback. "No, our Creator does not have a Creator, It just always was". And there goes your argument out the window.

          September 2, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
        • 1word

          Joe, yes everything made was made by something. I asked God myself if he had a Father and he said Yes. He basically said it in a question to me, "YOU HAVE A FATHER RIGHT? I Suggest you get to know him, what we know is very limited to what he knows. We see the universe and it looks large, but to God it could be smaller than your back yard. When you read the Bible, God only focuses on Heaven and Earth, he doesn't talk about these other planets. Who knows the mysteries of God, but I do know that he is real. We will have to answer to him, you can take that to the Bank!

          September 2, 2013 at 12:44 pm |
        • Doobs

          Joe, yes everything made was made by something. I asked God myself if he had a Father and he said Yes. He basically said it in a question to me, "YOU HAVE A FATHER RIGHT?

          I really hope you don't have any young children.

          September 2, 2013 at 1:23 pm |
  5. drturi

    Be amazed read Dr. Turi's rebuttals – Google "Yes Christians, Muslims and Jews worship the same stolen God… dr.turi"

    September 2, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
  6. drturi

    Be amazed read Dr. Turi rebuttal – Google " Yes Christians, Muslims and Jews worship the same stolen God… dr.turi"

    September 2, 2013 at 12:27 pm |
  7. m1971

    The real question should be, which religion is the counterfeit to GOD's word. Which religion was commissioned by GOD.....God is not the author of confusion, his word must have truth and order or God contradicts his existence. When you read HIS WORD, you'll realize that GOD is holy, (not good) but holy, a perfect goodness that no man can achieve on his own. Once we come to the realization that HE is teaching or giving us this gift of perfection, this Holy eternal life, then the story of Jesus makes total sense. Only thru Jesus and the sacrifice of the cross, where his blood divinely washes away all our sins and makes us worthy and Holy in God's eyes. And those who reject, curse, mock, scoff or dismiss this gift are condemning themselves forever. There is only one story, one word, and one Redeemer....Jesus our Lord and Savior. The rest are counterfeits, and GOD warns us of these heresy's, demonic forces masquerading as angels of light to deceive of us, and making us stumble or inject pride into our hearts. The arrogance of this modern day generation thru intellect, love of money or fame, or self-glorification, preaching unity, tolerance, peace and love are being deceived to think that man's love and good will is above GOD's words. Salvation is not about peace and love, salvation is about holiness, and holiness is a perfect love and peace, that no man can achieve without the blood of Christ. Many Many are being deceived. There is only one chance at this, and in the end GOD will harvest his elect-those who strive to find his only begotten son, Jesus Christ. The rest will be condemned. Narrow is the road to paradise, and few will find it. In other words GOD is not joking or compromising on his word, HE is dead serious.

    September 2, 2013 at 12:24 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      As is written in Hebrews, the sons of Ishmael "only have the law" and any disagreement about the law is cause to kill.

      September 2, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      Proof?

      September 2, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
    • joe

      Dude, your post is dripping with mental delusion.

      Get help.

      September 2, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
    • bostontola

      There is no argument that Judaism is counterfeit but there is a strong argument that Christianity is counterfeit. What is Jesus was a false messiah? Oops.

      September 2, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
      • bostontola

        is S/B if.

        September 2, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
    • fred

      Good Post!
      Most people overlook that fact Gods holiness is like the fire Moses saw in the bush, its a burning holiness, it scorched Isaiah's lips, the mighty seraphim covered their faces and Moses was shielded behind a rock so he would not be burned to a crisp by the Glory of a Holy God. Holy, Holy Holy is the Lord !

      September 2, 2013 at 1:08 pm |
      • Bob

        fred, your sky fairy would be quite the ass hole if he actually existed, so good thing he doesn't. Now get back to humping your sacrificial goat already.

        September 2, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
        • fred

          Yes, and Satan had the same vision of God as you do.

          September 2, 2013 at 2:08 pm |
        • joe

          Yes, and Satan had the same vision of God as you do.
          ------–
          Your God made Satan and gave him all his powers. And at the time your God gave Satan all his powers, your God knew exactly what Satan would do with those powers. It's part of being all knowing.

          think about it.

          September 2, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
        • Bob

          So, fred, how come your all-powerful ass hole in the sky can't just deal with your "Satan" problem? Pretty pathetic "god" you've made for yourself there.

          September 2, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
      • Doobs

        its a burning holiness,

        Sounds like herpes.

        September 2, 2013 at 1:26 pm |
    • fred

      Joe Bob
      Satan has already been defeated. When Jesus rose again the sting of death is gone for all who believe. Jesus said it is finished. There is your answer God had no problem defeating Satan / Evil. Your problem is you simply think you have a better vision as to how one can allow free will and still bring about unity with a holy God. Well I have yet to hear a single atheist come up with a better plan. Mocking and pretending God is not possible is not a solution to the problem of free will only a coping mechanism.

      September 2, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
  8. hharri

    I'M DYING HERE

    September 2, 2013 at 12:22 pm |
  9. lol?? Pithiest, YES!!

    Akira sayz,
    "Although barbaric, the same thing was condoned in the OT. This also doesn't negate that Islam is one of the three Abrahamic religions. Same God."
    Likewise for Cain, only he was more pure. Ishmael didn't get a full education. Wake up Arabs.

    September 2, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
    • Akira

      Still the same God, lol??.

      September 2, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
      • hharri

        lol

        September 2, 2013 at 12:31 pm |
      • lol?? Pithiest, YES!!

        You could ask Abel.

        September 2, 2013 at 12:41 pm |
    • hharri

      watched em murder his own kid

      he could have obliterated every roman soldier

      vaporized em

      every presiding authority

      every sam stone mocking the king of the jews

      every evil atheist

      in a blink of an eye

      to stop the execution of his son

      blood and sweat and skin and dirt and wailing and pleading and screaming and begging and ripping and pounding and smashing pounding cracking and crying and blood and tears and agony and agony and nails and wrists and feet and growling spectators luvin it
      sam the devil and her mates

      and his mom

      September 2, 2013 at 12:30 pm |
      • Doobs

        koo koo

        September 2, 2013 at 1:27 pm |
  10. hharri

    sorry boothswanna

    September 2, 2013 at 12:18 pm |
  11. bostontola

    John P. Tarver said:
    "The scientific method is not used by most of science, otherwise there would be no big bang theory or evolution as a means to species in science, no black holes either. That is because they are false notions."

    Most of science? What percent of science papers published are in Big Bang plus evolution? Not more than half, it's a tiny percentage. Your statement is patently false, your thought process is weak, your critical thinking skills are atrocious. You make such obvious false statements so frequently I can only conclude you know they are false, i.e. you are a liar.

    Your vociferous denial of validated facts suggests a break with reality.

    September 2, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
    • hharri

      take your prozac

      September 2, 2013 at 12:19 pm |
      • bostontola

        You are as qualified to discuss god as you are to prescribe medicine, not at all.

        September 2, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
        • hharri

          thanks

          September 2, 2013 at 12:32 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      Most of science is soft science and uses the scientific approach of the notion being able to be shown false. This is the notion of Darwin and not the scientific method. If most of science used the scientific method there would be no black holes or evolution as a means to species as theories.

      September 2, 2013 at 12:26 pm |
      • bostontola

        Your scores of posts are evidence enough of your lack of understanding of science and your lack of an open mind to anything that conflicts with your dogma.

        September 2, 2013 at 12:31 pm |
        • hharri

          u tell em boothswanna

          September 2, 2013 at 12:33 pm |
        • John P. Tarver

          My posts demonstrate that I understand science well and am educated in science as MSEE. Your posts indicate you are part of a social/political agenda that suppresses science and teaches racism in public schools. You made Trayvon and now he is dead.

          September 2, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
        • bostontola

          If you have a MSEE that scares me. Your work should be highly reviewed by a sane engineer or your product could be dangerous. You show no understanding of science and you have an illogical thought process. Not my opinion, your own posts prove it.

          September 2, 2013 at 12:42 pm |
        • John P. Tarver

          Such rants are actionable under the engineer's act in your state fool. Now go discuss fashion, or whatever it is you know about.

          September 2, 2013 at 1:14 pm |
        • Doobs

          You made Trayvon and now he is dead.

          Just like Jeebus.

          September 2, 2013 at 1:30 pm |
      • bostontola

        You keep missing the point, most of science is not working on black holes and evolution. Your thought process is quite dull.

        September 2, 2013 at 12:33 pm |
        • lol?? Pithiest, YES!!

          Most of scientists are just engaging in reverse engineering, which actually makes em mere techs.

          September 2, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
        • Doobs

          John P. Tarver is one of those people who think that scientists spend all day trying to disprove god(s).

          September 2, 2013 at 1:32 pm |
    • Vic

      John's premise is true in that Einstein's Theory of General Relativity, The Big Bang Theory, The Particle Physics Standard Model, Quantum Physics/Mechanics, etc., let alone Darwin's Theory of Evolution, DO NOT PASS the "Modern Scientific Method" when tried!

      Did you know that "Classical Physics" that are facts of life here on earth DO NOT apply in space?!

      Also, keep in mind that the "observable" universe is only 4% of the "total" universe, and the other 96% is UNKNOWN to us!

      September 2, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
      • bostontola

        Vic,
        Wow. You are as nuts as JPT. You guys think if you repeat patently false things enough they become true. That is the signature of religious thinking.

        September 2, 2013 at 12:45 pm |
        • Vic

          All the scientific and technological advancements we have today are based on "Classical Physics." What else did you think?!

          September 2, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
        • bostontola

          Vic,
          That's nutty. The GPS system wouldn't work if classical physics was used, semiconductors and hence computers, cell phones, Internet, etc wouldn't be possible, lasers wouldn't work, the list goes on and on.

          September 2, 2013 at 1:01 pm |
        • Vic

          ?!

          September 2, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
  12. tony

    Most US Christians believe in the god of the Megachurch with the greatest TV ratings. And that reinforces their "spend on myself" lifestyle.

    September 2, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      Who else is there to spend on?

      September 2, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
      • tony

        The infrastructure of their community. There are supposed to be later generations of the human race. Pulling the plug on their necessary environmental assets for ongoing survival isn't smart or helpful.

        September 2, 2013 at 12:19 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Sounds like lefty tripe to me. I'm already taxed out my ass, the rest is spent on me me me.

          September 2, 2013 at 12:22 pm |
        • tony

          Hey, Today you can drink potable water for a low price. In a coupla hundred years, that may no longer be possible.

          September 2, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          In a couple of hundred years, I'll be either worm food or my consciousness will exist on a computer hard drive. Either way, it won't affect me.

          September 2, 2013 at 12:36 pm |
      • hharri

        the neglected and abused kids of athies

        September 2, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zwc1Wi-mlCI

          September 2, 2013 at 12:22 pm |
        • heehee

          Where do you get the idea they're abused? Do you have evidence?

          September 2, 2013 at 12:26 pm |
        • hharri

          no. of course not. we just enjoy razzin u guys

          September 2, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
        • hharri

          remember, dear, u have a terrible, ferocious enemy. they see invisible creatures. hear voices and are hypocritical, deluded mental cases.

          gear up man! they threaten your very life! hurry man. the time is now! the matter is grave and urgent! they r taking over the world chanting to FSM

          September 2, 2013 at 12:40 pm |
        • Doobs

          koo koo

          September 2, 2013 at 1:34 pm |
    • hharri

      who said judge not, buddha or Confucius?

      September 2, 2013 at 12:20 pm |
      • lol?? Pithiest, YES!!

        Eve.

        September 2, 2013 at 12:24 pm |
      • lol?? Pithiest, YES!!

        She was waitin' for the h0m0se*xual fashion designers to show up with their death camp skinny models.

        September 2, 2013 at 12:26 pm |
  13. hharri

    I MAY BE THE GREATEST GENIUS ALIVE TODAY

    September 2, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
    • bostontola

      Funny, but I don't like impersonators.

      September 2, 2013 at 12:17 pm |
  14. x

    yes they do there is a real moses and a real muhammad but when it come to jesus there were two a made up one and the real one now the ? is how can you tell the different and which one are you following lol ??"??}{}?'.come on open debate are shall i say reasoning with one another

    September 2, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
    • hharri

      we must be fair and give credit where its due.

      frankly, jeeeeeeeeebus never existed, but if he had, he would a been one third Horus, one third Zeus and one half jewish car salesman

      September 2, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
  15. hharri

    hysterical!

    September 2, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
  16. Robert

    To atheist, if you choose not to believe, why does it bother you, if we do ? live your life as you see fit.
    To who believe JESUS is a prophet, do prophets lie ? JESUS said no one comes to the FATHER but by ME(JESUS).

    September 2, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      Simple Robert...when all of the laws that have been put in place because of YOUR religion, when the references to YOUR beliefs that have been put in place get removed, and your religion is no longer forced on everyone, I will care far less. Until then, showing the falseness of religions is a way to have a voice.

      September 2, 2013 at 12:20 pm |
    • heehee

      Why shouldn't it bother us? Why must I be serene to be correct?

      I'm a happy guy. But the thought of all those people wasting their lives on falsehoods is not so pleasant. I don't think about it all the time. Just once in a while.

      The thought of all those people who think the world is 6000 years old voting is alarming.

      September 2, 2013 at 12:25 pm |
      • Will

        That is very kind of you, I mean that honestly. Sometimes when we're talking about religion and stuff we forget that we just want to find the truth. May I ask what you believe and why?

        September 2, 2013 at 12:27 pm |
        • heehee

          I believe that the acceleration due to gravity is proportional to one over the distance squared in weak gravitational fields, because it has been measured literally millions of time and not violated. I believe that the planets move in nearly elliptical orbits, because their positions have been observed for centuries and conform to this law. I believe that the sun is powered by the nuclear fusion of hydrogen in to helium, because the spectrum of the emitted light is exactly as predicted by theory and tested by experiment on earth. I believe in evolution by natural selection, because the fossil record (literally millions of fossils) and genetic record both show a branching tree structure of inherited characteristics which slowly changed over time. What's more, the two areas of evidence (genetic and fossil, each relying on millions of data points) exhibit the same pattern of branching between specific groups of species. Spectacularly, we actually know the family tree of all life over the last 500 million years or so. There are also many, many sequences of fossils showing gradual change between very different families of creatures.

          I do not believe that a rainbow was a sign from god, since there is no evidence for this claim. Also, I can't help finding this answer childish; it seems like any other myth from the childhood of our species before we began to understand how the world works. However, even though it is palpably unimaginative I would believe it if there was evidence for it. The true explanation is much more beautiful: the angle of refraction and reflection depend on wavelength; so waterdrops act like little prisms and spread the colors out for us.

          Now I will be honest with you about something. I know that you are not interested in these things, no matter what I say. I know that in any discussion with you, you will ignore the information and seek only to bring one more sheep into the fold. Before you say that I am doing the same thing, keep in mind that I have read the bible, and also many books about the history of religion. I am prejudging you, based on your posts, and few hundred conversations I've had with Christians over my lifetime.

          I would like to suggest something to you. Prove me wrong about my prejudgment of you. Read up on science. Learn as much as you can.

          That was honesty. If you state things with certainty and without evidence, I will not be able to take you seriously.

          September 2, 2013 at 3:51 pm |
        • Will

          I respect that, you stated what you believe and gave your evidence to support it. It's annoying when people just tell you that you are wrong and act like that is proof enough. And I will not try to convince you. I will only say that I believe in Jesus because I look at the historical evidence and scientific evidence and I believe that it points to an intelligent creator. Then I look at the list of possible creators and the God of the Bible is the only one that I believe has an evidence to support.

          September 2, 2013 at 3:59 pm |
        • heehee

          Thanks for your kind response. I hope that you will take me up on the invitation to learn as much science as you can. I can state things in a few sentences, but that shouldn't convince anyone.

          September 2, 2013 at 4:12 pm |
        • Will

          No problem, and that's cool

          September 2, 2013 at 4:13 pm |
    • Bob

      Robert, it is partly because believer idiots such as yourself also get to vote and impact the laws that the rest of us have to live by, and you are influenced by your absurd religio-dogma. That is part of why your crazy beliefs are so problematic for us.

      Shouting at us in all caps about your Jeebus doesn't help your case either. Think about this: how is it that your omnipotent being couldn't do his saving bit without the whole silly Jesus hoopla? And how was Jesus' death a "sacrifice", when an omnipotent being could just pop up a replacement son any time with less than a snap of his fingers? Pretty pathetic "god" that you've made for yourself there. The root premises of your silly Christian fairy tales are absurd and false.

      Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
      Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
      http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

      September 2, 2013 at 12:26 pm |
      • Will

        Because Jesus was not a created being. He is one with God as part of the Trinity. Thus God sent Himself to die for you and me so that we could know Him. That is the amazing part, when God laid the foundations of the world, He was all ready planning to send Jesus to die. Literally right after the first sin, God made the first prophecy that He would send Jesus. The fact that God knew what would happen makes it all the more amazing

        September 2, 2013 at 12:32 pm |
        • joe

          Thus God sent Himself to die for you and me so that we could know Him.
          -------
          Such an absurd statement. Dying is no sacrifice for an all knowing all powerful being. First, they are immortal by defintion. Secondly, since they can die and come back at will, dying is nothing to them. It is something akin to going into the next room and then coming back.

          September 2, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
        • Will

          Here's the thing, when Jesus came to Earth, He became fully human, while retaining His deity. I know this is a hard thing to understand, many Christians do, but it is never the less true.

          September 2, 2013 at 12:39 pm |
        • joe

          He became fully human,
          -----–
          Wrong, He was perfect. No human is perfect. He raised people from the dead. No human can do that. He controlled the weather. No human can do that.

          You religious will say anything to justify your conclusions but when the real debate starts you fold like a fine lawn chair.

          September 2, 2013 at 12:42 pm |
        • Will

          No, Jesus was a perfect man, because he had no earthly father, rather when the Holy Spirit came into Mary, she became pregnant. That fact separates Jesus from sin, making Him perfect.
          As to your questions about Jesus's miracles, that's what they are miracles, Jesus wasn't the one that healed people, God the Father healed them, through Jesus. Thus it makes sense that God being God and the created of mankind and the earth, would be able to heal and change whatever He wants

          September 2, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
        • Bob

          Too funny watching Will making his standard Christian twists to avoid facing reality. Will, you just lack the balls to acknowledge what is staring you in the face: your religion is a complete fairy tale.

          September 2, 2013 at 2:38 pm |
        • joe

          Thus God sent Himself to die for you and me so that we could know
          --------–
          It is nothing for a god to die and come back. They are immortal. They can come back at will just as your Jesus did. Hence, no sacrifice at all.

          September 2, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
        • Will

          Thanks, and I actually haven't avoided anything, my God doesn't have to. Nothing anyone has said on this site has made me doubt my faith any less, in fact, I'm more sure now than when I started talking to people on here

          September 2, 2013 at 2:44 pm |
        • Colin

          Bob is right. Will, your 'arguments' have been trounced at every step. Grow some courage and admit it.

          September 2, 2013 at 7:15 pm |
        • Will

          No one has said anything that makes me believe that I am wrong. Tell me why I'm wrong, saying that a person is wrong means nothing, it's just opinion unless you have facts and reasons to back it up

          September 2, 2013 at 7:48 pm |
  17. hharri

    "Richard Cranium

    Believing in a spiritual world where there is absolutley no evidence anywhere of it is what is truly illogical."

    gee, i never heard that one b4.

    ain't it a pity? engaged in a war in which the other side consists entirely of insane, deluded, crazy nuts who hear voices and are convinced something is there that simply doesn't exist?

    how hard can it be to defeat an army like that? lol

    September 2, 2013 at 12:03 pm |
    • Akira

      Except there is no war being waged against religion. You are free to practice your chosen religion as you please.

      September 2, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
  18. pepsee

    Here is an article about the forever primitive cruel religion Islam transported to Canada:
    http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/tarek-fatah/honour-killing_b_1133349.html

    Excerpt –
    This ownership or possession of Muslim women by the men in their families was summed up best by professor Shahrzad Mojab of University of Toronto as "the crude Arabic expression that 'A man's honour lies between the legs of a woman.' "

    September 2, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
    • Akira

      Although barbaric, the same thing was condoned in the OT. This also doesn't negate that Islam is one of the three Abrahamic religions. Same God.

      September 2, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
  19. THE ONLY TRUTH

    truth

    September 2, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
  20. THE ONLY TRUTH

    truth only testing

    September 2, 2013 at 11:59 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.