home
RSS
September 21st, 2013
11:41 AM ET

Can Pope Francis make his vision a reality?

By John L. Allen Jr., CNN

ROME (CNN) - Pope Francis has sketched a vision of a Catholic Church that’s more welcoming – to women, to homosexuals, to divorced and remarried believers, to pretty much everybody –- and less invested in the culture wars.

In a now famous interview published Thursday, the pope said he knows some militants want him to toss around more fire and brimstone. But he insists that Catholic positions on hot-button issues such as abortion and gay marriage are already well known, and anyway, “Ministers of the church must be ministers of mercy above all.”

None of that implies a change in church teaching, but it does suggest a fairly serious shift in tone. The question now becomes, is this just the pope talking? Or is he capable of bringing the rest of the church along with him?

Despite the mythology of Roman Catholicism as a top-down monolith, the truth is that it’s actually one of the most decentralized institutions on Earth.

There are only about 3,000 personnel in the Vatican directing the affairs of a church that counts 1.2 billion members, which means that Rome doesn’t have the manpower to micromanage anything but exceptional cases.

Probably 90% of the decisions that matter – what pastor will be assigned to which parish, or what tithes will be used for –- are made at the local level.

Popes trying to steer this colossus in a new direction, therefore, need middle managers as well as the rank and file to pull in the same direction, and experience suggests they don’t always fall in line.

MORE ON CNN: Pope Francis: Church can't 'interfere' with gays

Pope John Paul II, nearly 27 years, exhorted the church to be more evangelical, more daring about taking its message to the streets, and while he unleashed powerful new energies – think about World Youth Days, for instance – that missionary aspiration still remains a work in progress.

Similarly, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI desired a church more appreciative of tradition and more focused on its core identity, and again most observers would say the end result over eight difficult years was a mixed bag.

If Francis is to bring the Catholic Church into line with his more pastoral and compassionate vision, two fronts seem especially critical.

First is personnel. Nothing a pope does to shape culture in the church is more important than naming the roughly 5,100 bishops of the world, who set the tone in their own backyards.

A new papal direction may be invigorating, but if people don’t pick up the same vibe from their local bishops and pastors, over time it will only seem like sound and fury signifying little.

To date Francis hasn’t made many flagship picks except for his own successor in Buenos Aires, Argentina, but he’ll have to do so soon, since archbishops in critical locales such as Madrid, Cologne and Chicago are all older than 75, the normal retirement age.

Popes typically rely on their nuncios, or ambassadors, around the world to recommend new bishops.

In June, Francis gave his nuncios their marching orders, saying he wants bishops who are “close to the people, fathers and brothers” as well as “gentle, patient and merciful.” He also said they shouldn’t have “the psychology of princes.”

How well he spots talent to fit that profile will help determine whether his dream of moving past what he called “a church of small-minded rules” becomes reality.

MORE ON CNN: The pope said what? Six stunners from Francis

The other key test is structural reform, beginning in the Vatican and radiating outward, perhaps especially on financial transparency and the fight against child sexual abuse.

Scandals in those areas have plagued the Vatican and the wider church in recent years, making it difficult for many people to see Catholicism as a vehicle for compassion.

Francis has set up three commissions to ponder reform, including a body of eight cardinals from around the world set to hold its first meeting in Rome from October 1-3.

If those groups don’t deliver significant recommendations, which are embraced and implemented by the pope, once again his rhetoric about reforming the church may ring hollow.

Popes play many roles, including prophet and CEO. Francis has delivered a stunning debut as the church’s voice of conscience and spiritual guide; now he has to get down to the brass tacks of management to make sure it doesn’t go to waste.

John L. Allen Jr. is CNN’s senior Vatican analyst and senior correspondent for the National Catholic Reporter. 

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Catholic Church • Leaders • Pope Francis

soundoff (2,596 Responses)
  1. Elijah

    The Purpose of Baptism:

    Water Baptism identifies the believer with the Godhead – Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

    “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” Matthew 28:19 (NIV)

    •Water Baptism identifies the believer with Christ in His death, burial and resurrection.
    “When you came to Christ, you were "circ u mcised," but not by a physical procedure. It was a spiritual procedure–the cutting away of your sinful nature. For you were buried with Christ when you were baptized. And with him you were raised to a new life because you trusted the mighty power of God, who raised Christ from the dead.” Colossians 2:11-12 (NLT)

    “We were therefore buried with Him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.” Romans 6:4 (NIV)

    •Water Baptism is an act of obedience for the believer. It should be preceded by repentance, which simply means “change.” It is turning from our sin and selfishness to serve the Lord. It means placing our pride, our past and all of our possessions before the Lord. It is giving the control of our lives over to Him.
    "Peter replied, 'Each of you must turn from your sins and turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.' Those who believed what Peter said were baptized and added to the church–about three thousand in all.” Acts 2:38, 41 (NLT)

    •Water Baptism is a public testimony – the outward confession of an inward experience. In baptism, we stand before witnesses confessing our identification with the Lord.

    •Water Baptism is a picture representing profound spiritual truth:

    Death – “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2:20 (NIV)
    Resurrection – “We were therefore buried with Him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the father, we too may live a new life. If we have been united with Him like this in His death, we will certainly also be united with Him in His resurrection.” Romans 6:4-5 (NIV)

    “He died once to defeat sin, and now he lives for the glory of God. So you should consider yourselves dead to sin and able to live for the glory of God through Christ Jesus. Do not let sin control the way you live; do not give in to its lustful desires. Do not let any part of your body become a tool of wickedness, to be used for sinning. Instead, give yourselves completely to God since you have been given new life. And use your whole body as a tool to do what is right for the glory of God." Romans 6:10-13 (NLT)

    Cleansing – “And this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also – not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a good conscience toward God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.” I Peter 3:21 (NIV)

    “But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.” I Corinthians 6:11 (NIV)
    –AboutChristianity.com

    September 23, 2013 at 4:15 pm |
    • Aiden

      Sums it up very well!!!!

      September 23, 2013 at 4:17 pm |
    • Alias

      What a bunch of psycho babble.
      your reference to weenie snipping is for jews, BTW.

      September 23, 2013 at 4:20 pm |
      • Doc Vestibule

        Drowning, cannibalism and genital mutilation.
        Just some of the fun rituals to found in the Abrahamic religions.

        September 23, 2013 at 4:23 pm |
      • Andy

        Read the post again, this time s l o w l y.

        It looks like you didn't get it right with that first time reading.

        September 23, 2013 at 4:27 pm |
    • Andy

      Just as Jesus Himself was baptized, we as believers also get baptized.

      September 23, 2013 at 4:24 pm |
    • Vic

      Water Baptism is a thing of the past; it was under the "Dispensation of the Law," and it is not required for "Salvation" since the "Dispensation of Grace." Since the "Dispensation of Grace," we are justified by "Faith" ALONE, through which we are saved by the "Grace" of God. It is imperative to discern that we are "justified" by "Faith" and NOT by "baptism."

      September 23, 2013 at 4:51 pm |
      • Moses

        You're not baptized?.

        September 23, 2013 at 5:03 pm |
  2. Lionly Lamb

    The Way of the Living completes the Living Way... The Ways of Life are for those who are ever to be living Life's Abundances... Without the Abundances of the Living: there could be no Life Ways... Timely generational penetrations permeate the Living Way of all Life's Abundances... Those who know Life know not every accumulative Life's Abundant Ways... These LAWs they ever do change like a gentle wind or a gale gusting ever the more harder... Life is sometimes made and more often then not, just lived out... You who make Life are of Life's gales gently blowing about their windiness across the glistening grasslands... Real eyes realize real lies...

    September 23, 2013 at 3:52 pm |
  3. Live4Him

    @Alias : Isn't baptism necessary to wash away original sin?

    No. It is merely an outward sign of one's new faith. The thief on the cross was never baptized, but was still saved by Christ.

    September 23, 2013 at 3:17 pm |
    • Topher

      Like!

      September 23, 2013 at 3:23 pm |
    • Alien Orifice

      Can you imagine how gross that water was? And then they "bathe" in it? Ewww.

      September 23, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
    • Alias

      Still not 100% sure the bible says that, but I'll let it go.
      You still are avoiding the central question:
      Doesn't the bible say that everyone who does not accept jesus is going to hell?

      September 23, 2013 at 3:26 pm |
      • AE

        God desires the salvation of all. Justice in His eyes is when all His children are returned to Him. The good news is Jesus' work has accomplished this. Even for those who have never heard of Jesus.

        We talk about Jesus dying for 3 days and conquering hell. His redemptive powers have overcome death and saved those condemned by sin. Good news for all, not just a few.

        September 23, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          The good news is Jesus' work has accomplished this. Even for those who have never heard of Jesus.
          Would you explain what you mean by this, and please back up your response with scripture? I want to make sure I understand you properly...

          September 23, 2013 at 3:40 pm |
        • Alias

          This is an example of the christina lies that drove me from the church.
          You are saying what you want to believe, NOT what the bible actually says.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:45 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Alias,
          just because some people may have "gotten it wrong" shouldn't drive you from God. You use money, right? You're not deterred from using money because counterfeit bills exist are you? Nah, the fact that there are some that are "wrong" should drive you to a mindset that desires to seek what is "right."

          September 23, 2013 at 3:51 pm |
        • Alias

          I'm not rejecting the church because some people got it wrong, I reject the church because of what the bible really says.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:55 pm |
        • AE

          John 16 16-17
          "You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit–fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. This is my command: Love each other."

          The good news is Christ accepts you. Which is more powerful than you accepting Christ. You are saved, go love others and tell them they are saved, too.

          September 23, 2013 at 4:01 pm |
        • Vic

          You never know! There is a Limited Atonement vs. Unlimited Atonement Debate among Christians regarding everybody going to heaven or not, based on Universal Atonement verses from Scripture! The reason not so many people know about it is that it is a denominational and a secondary debate.

          Here are two examples of everybody goes to heaven:

          1 John 2:2
          "2 and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world."

          1 Timothy 4:10
          "10 For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers."

          Scripture Is From:

          New American Standard Bible (NASB)
          Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation

          http://www.biblegateway.com/

          September 23, 2013 at 4:03 pm |
      • Lawrence of Arabia

        How about these?
        1 John 2:23 – Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father; the one who confesses the Son has the Father also.
        2 John 9-11 – Anyone who goes too far and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God; the one who abides in the teaching, he has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house, and do not give him a greeting; for the one who gives him a greeting participates in his evil deeds.

        September 23, 2013 at 3:38 pm |
      • Robert Brown

        Psalm 34:18
        The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit.

        Matthew 19:14
        But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven

        September 23, 2013 at 3:45 pm |
      • Vic

        Water Baptism is a thing of the past, and Infant Baptism is not existent.

        When a person is born again (believes in Jesus Christ as Lord and personal Savior,) he/she is born of the spirit and not the flesh and baptized and indwelled by the Holy Spirit.

        Here is what the Bible says about that:

        Matthew 3:11
        "11 “As for me, I baptize you with water for repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, and I am not fit to remove His sandals; He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.""

        Luke 3:16
        "16 John answered and said to them all, “As for me, I baptize you with water; but One is coming who is mightier than I, and I am not fit to untie the thong of His sandals; He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire."

        John 1:33
        "33 I did not recognize Him, but He who sent me to baptize in water said to me, ‘He upon whom you see the Spirit descending and remaining upon Him, this is the One who baptizes in the Holy Spirit.’"

        John 3:3-7
        "3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” 4 Nicodemus said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born, can he?” 5 Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7 Do not be amazed that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’"

        Titus 3:5
        "5 He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit,"

        John 14:17
        "17 that is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you and will be in you."

        John 15:26
        "26 “When the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, that is the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify about Me,"

        Romans 8:9-11
        "9 However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him. 10 If Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, yet the spirit is alive because of righteousness. 11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you."

        Scripture Is From:

        New American Standard Bible (NASB)
        Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation

        http://www.biblegateway.com/

        September 23, 2013 at 3:48 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Do you have snakes in your church?

          September 23, 2013 at 9:17 pm |
      • m murdoch

        where does the bible say accept him?

        September 23, 2013 at 5:39 pm |
    • Alien Orifice

      I enjoy driving my in-laws crazy by not having my youngest baptized.

      September 23, 2013 at 3:28 pm |
      • Doc Vestibule

        Me too.
        So far as my grand-parents in law have been told, I'm Catholic, married to the mother of my kid and had said child baptized.
        If I spoke Portuguese, I might be inclined to disabuse them of that notion – but I have little desire to argue wth octogenarians.

        September 23, 2013 at 3:45 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          Plus you are apparently a liar

          September 23, 2013 at 4:13 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @Bill
          How so? I'm not the one who told them that those things – that was their own family.

          September 23, 2013 at 4:26 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          How convenient for you.

          September 23, 2013 at 4:40 pm |
    • Alias

      I found it – and you are wrong!
      In Mark 16:16 Jesus says, "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned."

      September 23, 2013 at 3:32 pm |
      • Lawrence of Arabia

        Baptized meaning "immersed." The immersion is not necessarily in "water," and you have to explore the context to get the meaning. To be "immersed" into Christ means to become part of the body, and that is done through repentance and faith.

        September 23, 2013 at 3:42 pm |
      • WhatintheWorld

        Making it up as you go along. Immersed means this or that.

        You know what god "desires." You claim to know the mind of a creator? I know you are a liar because you have no more access to any knowledge than I do.

        As it has always been. Made up by humans to try and control other humans.

        September 23, 2013 at 4:19 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Like with most things, it all depends on which sect of Christianity you subsribe to.
      Mark 16:16 – Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.
      Catholics and Jehovah's Witnesses, for example, say that Baptism is necessary for salvation.

      September 23, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
      • Observer

        Whoever believes AND is baptized....

        –Yes, all who believe will be baptized, getting baptized is one of the first things a believer in Jesus does, it's not just the catholics.

        September 23, 2013 at 3:51 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Except for Quakers.

          September 23, 2013 at 4:21 pm |
    • Rainer Braindeadienism

      I beg to differ.

      September 23, 2013 at 3:52 pm |
  4. Alias

    The bibke says we must be baptized, and go through the son to get to the father. Otherwise, we go to hell.
    When I point out that a lot of people today and through history never had a chance to read a bible
    or get baptized, they tell me those people are judged differently.
    Can someone tell me where the bible says people of non-christian faiths are judged more favorably?

    September 23, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Nope, they are dead meat.

      September 23, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
    • Lawrence of Arabia

      Luke 12:47-48 – And that slave who knew his master's will and did not get ready or act in accord with his will, will receive many lashes, but the one who did not know it, and committed deeds worthy of a flogging, will receive but few…

      September 23, 2013 at 2:49 pm |
      • Alias

        Let's look at the entire passage, Shall we?
        41 Peter said, “Lord, are you telling this parable for us or for all?” 42 And the Lord said, “Who then is the faithful and wise manager, whom his master will set over his household, to give them their portion of food at the proper time? 43 Blessed is that servant[a] whom his master will find so doing when he comes. 44 Truly, I say to you, he will set him over all his possessions. 45 But if that servant says to himself, ‘My master is delayed in coming,’ and begins to beat the male and female servants, and to eat and drink and get drunk, 46 the master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he does not know, and will cut him in pieces and put him with the unfaithful. 47 And that servant who knew his master's will but did not get ready or act according to his will, will receive a severe beating. 48 But the one who did not know, and did what deserved a beating, will receive a light beating. Everyone to whom much was given, of him much will be required, and from him to whom they entrusted much, they will demand the more.

        The Unfaithful are a seperate group. They are still condemned!
        The one who doesn't know still gets beaten.

        September 23, 2013 at 3:07 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Exactly... Which is why evangelism is so important, because even those who have never heard of Jesus are still sinners, and will go to hell if they do not repent, and submit to Christ as Lord of their lives.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
        • Alias

          THAT IS EXACTLY MY POINT!
          Only those who have heard of Jesus can be saved. Billions of souls were put into babbies who never had a chance to reach heaven.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:23 pm |
        • AE

          -And that servant who knew his master's will but did not get ready or act according to his will, will receive a severe beating.-

          -But the one who did not know, and did what deserved a beating, will receive a light beating.-

          Sin is doubly punished to the person who knows better.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:28 pm |
        • Madtown

          What if God has actually given the "real religion" to a culture and grouping of humans that Lawrence has never heard of, and has no contact with? Maybe this religion stipulates that God won't accept him into his kingdom, unless Lawrence learns of the traditions of this unknown religion, and commits to following them. Is this fair to Lawrence? If a couple missionaries knocked on Lawrence's door, and told him to give up his religion and follow theirs, because theirs is the correct one, would Lawrence do it?

          September 23, 2013 at 3:35 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Alias
          Romans 9:22-24 – What if God, although willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction? And He did so to make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory, even us, whom He also called, not from among Jews only, but also from among Gentiles.

          All that God does in man’s salvation serves as an eternal example to God’s creation of His own immutable qualities. How would we know that God was just unless He demonstrated justice? How would we know that God was merciful unless He demonstrated mercy?

          September 23, 2013 at 3:45 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Madtown,
          Fair? Since when are men the best judge of fair?
          If what you say is indeed the case, then I would agree with Job: "Yet though He slay me, I will ever praise Him."
          God's justice is perfect, and if my damnation is His decree, then not only can I do nothing to avert it, but when that time comes, my perspective will have been so changed that I will for all eternity give praise to God for His condemnation of a pitiful sinner who is worthy of destruction.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:49 pm |
        • Alias

          Lawrence,
          Telling me how merciful your god can be is a waste of time.
          Accoring to your bible, he is sending billions of soulswho never had a chance to hell for eternity.

          September 23, 2013 at 4:03 pm |
        • Madtown

          then I would agree with Job
          -----
          That's cool, you can agree with Job. If you don't follow the correct religion, it won't matter. Again, maybe the "correct" religion is currently unknown to you, could certainly be the case. It's what you believe about humans with no knowledge of christianity.

          September 23, 2013 at 4:07 pm |
    • AE

      God doesn't send us to hell. We put ourselves through hell. It is our choice. Jesus saves us from hell.

      September 23, 2013 at 2:50 pm |
      • Madtown

        Even those who have no idea who Jesus is? I hope so!

        September 23, 2013 at 3:02 pm |
        • AE

          I can't imagine Jesus wouldn't. Some Christians might not like or agree with it, but they aren't the judge. Jesus is.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:09 pm |
      • Lawrence of Arabia

        John 5:22 – For not even the Father judges anyone, but He has given all judgment to the Son, so that all will honor the Son even as they honor the Father

        September 23, 2013 at 3:06 pm |
        • Alias

          Again Lawrence, Let's look at the entire passage:
          20 For the Father loves the Son and shows him all that he himself is doing. And greater works than these will he show him, so that you may marvel. 21 For as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to whom he will. 22 The Father judges no one, but has given all judgment to the Son, 23 that all may honor the Son, just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him. 24 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life.

          Only those who have heard the message!

          September 23, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
      • Alias

        God blamed us for a sin we did not commit, if you believe the Adma and Eve story.
        Those souls he placed into people who had no access to the word of jesus, or any way of knowing jesus ever existed, are going to hell. I don't call that fair.

        September 23, 2013 at 4:34 pm |
    • Alias

      This is one of the main reasons I left the RCC.
      If they don't have an answer, they just lie to you and tell you something that sounds good. They can't even stand up and admit to the things their bible actually says.
      BTW – I left before all the truth came out about how children were being used.

      September 23, 2013 at 2:55 pm |
      • Lawrence of Arabia

        Alias, they are not judged as harshly, but they are still judged. Understand this, that people go to hell not necessarily because they've "never heard of Jesus," they go to hell because they are sinners.

        September 23, 2013 at 2:59 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          "people go to hell not necessarily because they've "never heard of Jesus," they go to hell because they are sinners."

          So the only way out of hell is through Christ because we are all sinners destined for the burny for eterny, and those who never got a chance to know Christ because of where they were born won't be judged as harshly, but still sent to an eternity of torment because they drew the short starw while alive. Sounds like a perfectly Just and Fair system, at least for light skinned babies born to European and American Christians...

          September 23, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          You may think that God is being unfair, but you need to look at it from another angle – God doesn't have to save ANYBODY. God would be perfectly just if all of mankind since Adam was sent to hell, because we have all willingly sinned. Just a quick look into the mirror of the 10 Commandments will tell you that. When God chooses to save some, He is showing His mercy on some, by leaving the rest to the unintended consequences of their actions, God demonstrates His justice to a people whose lives are in open rebellion against the God who created them whose very consciences are screaming to them that there is a God, while they deny it with their lifestyle.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:09 pm |
        • Alias

          Lawrence,
          If this is true then your bible has a major contradiction. Doesn't the book clearly staet that the ONLY way to the father is through the son? Isn't baptism necessary to wash away original sin?

          September 23, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          No, baptism can't save you. It is symbolic only.
          Baptism is a public confession of the believer of his repentance and faith in Jesus because it identifies him with Jesus symbolically in His death, burial, and resurrection (hence, only a BELIEVER can be baptized) Matthew 3:11, Acts 2:38, Romans 6:3-11

          1 Peter 3:21 – Corresponding to that, baptism now saves you–not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a good conscience–through the resurrection of Jesus Christ…

          Baptism literally means "immersion" and in baptism, we are immersed into Christ... The water is merely an outward symbol of an inward change. You can be a Christian without being "water baptised" but you wouldn't be an obedient one, since we are required to make that public statement of our faith.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
        • Alias

          And what about the only weay to the father being through the son?

          Also remember that your god will not forgive those who worship another god. At best, you are down to saving christians and atheists. All others are still going to hell no matter how they live.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Alias, yeah, you see, our sins have seperated us from God, and there is a price to be paid for that. Since God is the very standard for righteousness, then although our sins may have human victims, all of our sins are ultimatesly against Him, and since God's righteousness is limitless, so our violations of His righteousness are limitless, and require an equally limitless penalty. That's where Jesus steps in... He paid the debt that we owed and could not pay. Since Jesus is the mediator between God and man, and has reconciled our debt, He demands repentance, and faith in Him. Jesus is the only way, since He is the one who made reconciliation to God for us.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Alias,
          And God CAN forgive those from other faiths... But their repentance is a repentance of idolatry in that their worship was the worship of a false God. Their faith is a turning from their idolatry to the worship of the true God.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:30 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Alias, you had also mentioned "no matter how they lived."
          One thing that many people have to repent of is their "good deeds."
          Many people think that they are saved by performing good works... Although James tells us that our good works show our faith to other men, Paul reminds us that ALL of our righteous deeds are but filthy rags in regards to salvation. We are saved by grace alone apart from works so that no one may boast. If we were saved by any good deeds,or even if we helped our salvation by good deeds then "grace" wouldn't be grace...It would be wages that we have earned, but the price for redemption cannot be paid by men for the price is too high. Only God could pay the debt that we owed...

          September 23, 2013 at 3:36 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          "You may think that God is being unfair, but you need to look at it from another angle – God doesn't have to save ANYBODY."

          You may think that Michael Vick was being cruel, but you need to look at it from another angle – they were HIS DOGS! Right Larry?

          I don't fvcking care if your God created me, he may have the right to r a p e me, he may have the right to abuse me, he may have the right to murder me, that still makes him an abusive murdering r a p i s t. I personally believe he doesn't exist which is a far simpler explanation for why bad things happen to good people and why the universe is not fair to all peoples.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
        • Alias

          Lawrence,
          You are not paying attention. My problem is that YOUR church says no one can reach heaven without finding jesus. Therefore, many innocent people are going to hell.
          I have a problem with that.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
        • Robert Brown

          Alias,

          There will be no innocent people in hell.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:59 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Alias,
          OK, I see now... Well, without sounding harsh, there are no "innocent people." It has been said that we are not sinners because we sin, rather, we sin because we are sinners. David said that we are born into sin from our mother's womb, a nature that corrupts every part of our being – our mind, our body, and our will. And we see this everyday, after all, do you have to train a child to disobey their parents? Nah, they do that naturally... When that child reaches the age of knowing right from wrong, they will still choose to do wrong. John Calvin called this "total depravity." Not that man is as sinful as he possibly could be, but that sin infects all of our capacities.

          It is for sin that people go to hell...

          (I could get into a discussion of a special grace that falls on infants, and those who through infirmities of the mind cannot make right/wrong decisions, but I'll leave that for the moment)

          September 23, 2013 at 3:59 pm |
        • Robert Brown

          Heaven will be full of guilty people.

          September 23, 2013 at 4:00 pm |
        • Alias

          Robert Brown,
          There will be innocent souls in hell, if your bible is right.
          People who had no chance of being saved by jesus are all going to hell.
          Not everyone ever heard of jesus, or could have.
          Every soul put into a native american who lived and died before the Europeans arrived is in hell according to your bible.
          I reject your unjust and cruel god, and your religion.

          September 23, 2013 at 4:08 pm |
        • Robert Brown

          Well then Alias, I suppose we are even. I reject your opinion of my merciful God.

          September 23, 2013 at 4:16 pm |
        • Alias

          These are not just opinions.
          I'm telling you what your bible says, and you are choosing to ignore the facts.

          September 23, 2013 at 4:25 pm |
        • WhatintheWorld

          "Just the Facts Ma'am..."

          Winner. As for the claim of a merciful god, let the victims of tsunamis, any natural disaster, pedophile priests and birth defects in on that gem. They sure would appreciate hearing that from you. Maybe those starving around the world would too.

          September 23, 2013 at 4:25 pm |
    • Live4Him

      The passage you reference is:
      1 Peter 3:18-20 For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit; in which also He went and made proclamation to the spirits now in prison, who once were disobedient, when the patience of God kept waiting in the days of Noah, during the construction of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through the water.

      Thus, if one response positively to Christ, they will be saved. If they reject Him, they won't.

      September 23, 2013 at 3:13 pm |
  5. SoldierOfConscience

    Bah humbug

    we should

    1. make divorce only for abuse / adultery, the kids need a stable family more then the parents need 'love'.
    2. keep marriage as 1 man + 1 woman. the kids need a male role model and a female role model. its common sense.
    3 protect unborn humans like we protect those who are born

    anything short of above 3 is immoral

    September 23, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Perhaps we can replace parents with sufficiently convincing robots that only display love for one another. Sort of like raising condors with condor puppet parents.

      September 23, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
    • Billy

      You need a theocracy of you own somewhere. Or a cave.

      September 23, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
    • Alias

      1. So if my wife and I wanted to divorce, all we'd have to do is cheat on each other?
      2. What you call common sense is just an excuse for bigotry.
      3. I respect your opinion here. Although, there needs to be exceptions for medical issues.

      September 23, 2013 at 2:38 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      In classical antiquity right up to modern times, it was believed that the body contained four humors: blood, yellow bile, black bile, and phlegm. It was believed that the right balance of these four humors made a person healthy but an excess or decrease in any one of these would cause illness. Because of this belief, treatments of sickness would include bloodletting, purges, and emetics. Ah yes, good ole' Common Sense...

      September 23, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
    • truthprevails1

      1) Should only people who are capable of child bearing be able to get married?
      2) There are plenty of successful children who emerge from singe parent homes and plenty of bad children who emerge from homes where both parents are.
      3) There are extenuating circumstances where an abortion may be the best option. In the case of rape or incest or the mother's life is at risk, it is immoral to say it is wrong to abort. Read Gregory Paul's Holocaust of the Children. Numerous pregnancies result in miscarriage...so your god seems perfectly okay with abortion.

      September 23, 2013 at 2:46 pm |
      • Just the Facts Ma'am...

        "2) There are plenty of successful children who emerge from singe parent homes and plenty of bad children who emerge from homes where both parents are."

        But, but... that's not what SoC's "common sense" is telling him so it can't be right, can it? Maybe he meant it in the 2nd meaning of "common".

        com·mon: /ˈkämən/ adjective: common; 2. showing a lack of taste and refinement; vulgar.

        September 23, 2013 at 3:00 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @SoC
      You never did respond about what you think should be done in the case of the 11 year old Chilean girl who was impregnated by her father and who is being forced to carry the child to term becuase the government outlaws abortion.

      September 23, 2013 at 2:55 pm |
      • Anon

        And he won't because 1) he has no answer, or 2) feels it's perfectly fine for a father to impregnate his 11 year old daughter, per the OT (see Lot and his daughters. Yes, I know that the aplogists will say Lot was drunk, and it's all his daughter's fault, but really? Really?)

        September 23, 2013 at 3:13 pm |
    • Sara

      Didn't this guy admit to being a troll months ago? C'mon guys, this one was pretty transparent.

      September 23, 2013 at 4:39 pm |
  6. Bag Boy

    I never know which translated, edited and manipulated version of the Bible to read. Which lies are true?

    September 23, 2013 at 1:53 pm |
    • frank

      It doesn't matter. But make sure to get one of a decent size. Keep it under the bathroom for back-up. I have found that the Psalms section is the most like Charmin.

      September 23, 2013 at 1:57 pm |
      • Tom, Tom, the Other One

        Big ones with flexible covers are excellent for use in interrogations. You can slam a sod in the head with one over and over and not leave a mark.

        September 23, 2013 at 2:04 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Rice paper can be used in lieu of Zig Zags in a pinch.

          September 23, 2013 at 2:09 pm |
    • Bag Boy

      Solid. Thanks ya'll.

      September 23, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Bible scholars who understand hebrew, aramaic, & greek say that the King James Version overall is about as close to actual interpretation as you are going to get. These days reading ye olde english can be difficult for some.

      September 23, 2013 at 2:46 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        The King James version of the new testament was completed in 1611 by 8 members of the church of England. There were (and still are) NO original texts to translate. The oldest manuscripts we have were written down 100's of years after the last apostle died. There are over 8,000 of these old manuscripts with no two alike. The king james translators used none of these anyway. Instead they edited previous translations to create a version their king and parliament would approve. So.... 21st century christians believe the "word of god" is a book edited in the 17th century from the 16th century translations of 8,000 contradictory copies of 4th century scrolls that claim to be copies of lost letters written in the 1st century.

        what a joke!

        September 23, 2013 at 2:48 pm |
        • Robert Brown

          You lost me at 8 members. Where did you get this huee, an athiest website?

          September 23, 2013 at 2:56 pm |
        • Robert Brown

          The translation was done by 47 scholars, all of whom were members of the Church of England.[9]
          Daniell, David (2003). The Bible in English: its history and influence. New Haven, Conn: Yale University Press. ISBN 0-300-09930-4

          September 23, 2013 at 3:06 pm |
        • Robert Brown

          Scroll dates range from the third century bce (mid–Second Temple period) to the first century of the Common Era, before the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 ce.
          http://www.deadseascrolls.org.il/learn-about-the-scrolls/introduction

          September 23, 2013 at 3:36 pm |
  7. amy2x youtube

    Satan's Pope just wants to Legitimize all his Pedophile Priests.

    Practically all precepts of the Roman Catholic religion contradict the Bible repeatedly. It is the largest cult in the world and most preachers will not openly say so because it is so large. For Catholics who read this, please remember this: the person that tells you the truth is the one that cares.

    For a glimpse of the atrocities committed by the Roman Catholic religion, do a net search on the Inquisition or the Crusades. During the Inquisition, the Catholic religion killed millions. Why? Primarily to suppress any and all opposition to the pope. Side "benefits" included taking the material wealth of its victims and showing the pope's power. The Catholic Inquisitors tortured, crippled, burned, and imprisoned millions of people. Whatever happened to love your enemies? (Matthew 5:44)

    September 23, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
    • SoldierOfConscience

      Buncha g @ys got into the priesthood and did their thing. They should have been exposed as such and defrocked and thrown out. that was the mistake.

      September 23, 2013 at 2:17 pm |
      • Billy

        Is anyone really this stupid? Maybe it's a poe.

        September 23, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
        • Anon

          Our biggest resident troll changes it up every once in a while with this character to spout his bigotry. He's playing all of us. He plays bith sides: believer and atheist. He's a poe, a troll, and very, very mentally ill.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      I googled the Spanish Inquisition like you suggested. I found out that it was run by King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella and only halted after protestation from the Holy See. Also:
      García Cárcel estimates that the total number processed by the Inquisition throughout its history was approximately 150,000; applying the percentages of executions that appeared in the trials of 1560–1700—about 2%—the approximate total would be about 3,000 put to death. Nevertheless, it is likely that the toll was much higher, keeping in mind the data provided by Dedieu and García Cárcel for the tribunals of Toledo and Valencia, respectively. It is likely that between 3,000 and 5,000 were executed.

      So other than being completely wrong. Your post is pretty useless.

      September 23, 2013 at 4:56 pm |
      • In Santa we trust

        RCC HQ was responsible for what happened to Galileo etc. and the Crusades etc. So RCC not entirely off the hook.

        September 24, 2013 at 12:53 pm |
  8. Bag Boy

    I miss Topher. He was smart about fake things.

    September 23, 2013 at 1:25 pm |
    • Bag Boy

      Topher if you are still back, please explain why OT an NT are so different. It isn't even seem like the same God. They perform magic and kill and rape. God orders genocide an all kinds of nasty things. Without that horrible God, Jesus couldn't have become an even more frightening fictional character.

      September 23, 2013 at 1:50 pm |
      • Topher

        Bag Boy

        "... please explain why OT an NT are so different."

        They are telling of two diff. covenants, but the NT is a continuation of the OT.

        "It isn't even seem like the same God."

        I'd disagree with you there.

        "They perform magic and kill and r.a.pe."

        WHO does these things?

        "God orders gen.ocide an all kinds of na.sty things."

        God gave the de.ath sentence to those that deserved it. And that includes you and me.

        "Without that horrible God, Jesus couldn't have become an even more frightening fictional character."

        As someone who rejects God, I can see how you'd find Jesus a frightening character. I used to reject Him, too.

        September 23, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
        • Bag Boy

          Topher, sometimes I am not sure if you are serious (?) Or just a POE?

          September 23, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
        • Topher

          I'm very serious about this subject.

          September 23, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
        • Bag Boy

          Topher, I don't want to frighten you, but I believe you may need counseling or perhaps and intervention. I'm sorry.

          September 23, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
        • Topher

          Bag Boy

          I DO want to frighten you. I believe you need a Savior. You're like the rest of us ... a sinner. You've acc.umulated a sin debt that you cannot pay. You're sentence: Hell. But God loved you so much He sent His Son to die on your behalf and pay your fine. That means though you are guilty, you will be able to walk out of God's courtroom a free man. Justice will have been satisfied. Whether you accept this gift is up to you. Allow the only one who can pay your fine to pay it ... or get what you deserve.

          September 23, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
        • Madtown

          He sent His Son to die on your behalf
          ----–
          Could God have more than 1 son/daughter? God created this incomprehensibly vast and intricate universe, he's obviously quite powerful. Could he have more than 1 offspring?

          September 23, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
        •  

          Godless Vagabond
          You know, what's really scary is that Topher seems to actually believe this nonsense. Incredible.

          September 23, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
        • Topher

          Madtown

          God doesn't have any offspring. The phrase "The Son" is a ti.tle for the second part of the Trinity (which includes The Father, The Son and the Holy Spirit). Jesus Christ wasn't God's offspring. He was/is God Himself.

          September 23, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
        • Bag Boy

          @Topher

          I never asked to be born nor was I given any input on the rules. Therefore the premise of a god that judges is me is unfair and illogical. It is not moral.

          September 23, 2013 at 2:52 pm |
        • Topher

          Bag Boy

          "I never asked to be born nor was I given any input on the rules. Therefore the premise of a god that judges is me is unfair and illogical. It is not moral."

          You know the rules. No one had to teach you it's wrong to lie. Yet I bet you've done that. God wrote His laws on our hearts. And He says He gave us the Creation and a conscience to know He exists and thus will be without excuse on Judgment Day.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:03 pm |
        • Madtown

          "The Son" is a ti.tle for the second part of the Trinity
          -----
          The Trinity is a concept that was invented, by humans, in about the 3rd or 4th century. You are literally all over the place! In your post that I responded to, you said "He sent His Son to die...". "HE" sent "HIS" son to die. In your response you say "Jesus Christ wasn't God's offspring. He was/is God Himself". So which is it? If Jesus is God himself, shouldn't you stop saying things like "He(God) sent his son(Jesus) to die"?!? Do you even read what you write before posting?

          September 23, 2013 at 3:09 pm |
        • Topher

          Madtown

          "The Trinity is a concept that was invented, by humans, in about the 3rd or 4th century."

          That's just not true. The Trinity is taught even in the OT, which even historians will tell you was finished 400 years before Christ.

          "If Jesus is God himself, shouldn't you stop saying things like "He(God) sent his son(Jesus) to die"?!? Do you even read what you write before posting?"

          Perhaps it is more clear to state "He (God) sent THE Son (Jesus) to die." I apologize if I'm creating a stumbling block for you, dude. That's not my intention. I just want you to have a clear understanding of what you are rejecting, that's all. But saying "His Son" isn't wrong because Christ is "The Son of God".

          September 23, 2013 at 3:14 pm |
        • Madtown

          I apologize if I'm creating a stumbling block for you, dude
          --------
          LOL!! Thanks, but no need to apologize. You're creating nothing of the sort for me. You do appear to be stumbling all over yourself, though, which I always find entertaining. From some very quick and rudimentary research: "From the Old Testament the early church retained the conviction that God is one.[67] The New Testament does not use the word Τριάς (Trinity)[68] nor explicitly teach the Nicene trinitarian doctrine"

          September 23, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
        • Topher

          Madtown

          "You do appear to be stumbling all over yourself, though, which I always find entertaining."

          No one ever accused me of being eloquent.

          "From some very quick and rudimentary research: "From the Old Testament the early church retained the conviction that God is one.[67] The New Testament does not use the word Τριάς (Trinity)[68] nor explicitly teach the Nicene trinitarian doctrine""

          God IS one. No one is disagreeing with that here. And that gathering was confirming a doctrine, not creating one. The NT does not need to have used the word Trinity. It teaches it quite clearly. Just like the words "rapture" and "dinosaur" weren't used, either, but they are clearly talked about.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:30 pm |
    • Billy

      Also I still want Topher to explain how those turtles could have made it back to the Galapagos from Gibraltar. He said the ark didn't have to go very far to get everything back to normal. I'm tihnking those turtles would have drowned only a mile or two into the Atlantic.

      September 23, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
      • Just the Facts Ma'am...

        Here is another fun fact that flood theorists cannot explain...

        Why didn't the ice caps, Iceland or Antarcitica float when faced with supposed global flooding? We have core samples showing how long that ice has been there, for more than 150,000 years in some cases, and the undenial fact that a global flood event would have dislodged huge glaciers and ice packs and yet we see ZERO evidence of that and in fact see the exact opposite. I recall being told as a child that the flood was deffinately true because scientists had found ocean creature fossils all the way on top of Mt. Everest but as soon as I learned in school about techtonic plate movement that explained how the seafloor has buckled and been pushed up to form these mountain ranges I didn't hear a peep out of my Church to change their story. They just silently kept repeating the lie they want to believe.

        September 23, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
        • Robert Brown

          Your disagreement with creation seems related mostly to time.

          September 23, 2013 at 2:52 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          That is a big factor in debunking Genesis. The biblical account does not match that of the actual evidence, therefore Genesis is false and so is any religious doctrine based thereon.

          You cannot have it both ways, you cannot claim Genesis is true and thus we have some inherrited sin we need a redeemer for, while simultaniously claiming that the Genesis account of creation and Adam and Eve and the lineage listed is really allegory and the account depicts events that were just much much older than the geological evidence we have and therefore cannot disprove it.

          It can only be one thing, either Genesis is fact and all the evidence to the contrary has been faked by invisible demons all working for their big Boss Satan, or Genesis is not fact and therefore we can dismiss it along with the other ancient creation myths as just that, myth.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:14 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          Oh, I forgot one other possibility for the ice caps not floating away during a global flood... maybe like the rainbow, the physics at work in making ice float didn't exist yet... of course that would have meant death to nearly all freshwater fish life on the planet as rivers, lakes and streams froze from the bottom up...

          "12 Then God said, “I am giving you a sign of my covenant with you and with all living creatures, for all generations to come. 13 I have placed my rainbow in the clouds. It is the sign of my covenant with you and with all the earth." Genesis 9:12,13

          See, rainbows didn't exist before the flood either... right?

          September 23, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
        • Joey

          My problem with Genesis is that every thing science has found to be true goes against the stories in the bible. I'll go with science until the bible is used to prove a scientific fact wrong.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:21 pm |
        • Topher

          Joey

          "My problem with Genesis is that every thing science has found to be true goes against the stories in the bible. I'll go with science until the bible is used to prove a scientific fact wrong."

          Like what, dude?

          September 23, 2013 at 3:26 pm |
        • Joey

          Like everything. You name it and Genesis got it wrong.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:32 pm |
        • Topher

          OK ... like what? Pick one and let's talk about it. What has science proven Genesis wrong on?

          September 23, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          Top 5 Things Genesis gets wrong:

          1. Adam & Eve – science has proven that we did not decsend from a single pair of pre-made humans.
          2. Global flood – geologists have proven the global flood event did not happen.
          3. Humans living 800 – 900 year life spans – Did not happen as the remains of our ancestors showed virtually identical lifespans to the neanderthals. The percent of remains for ho mosapians that were 40 years of age and older is the same.
          4. All land animal ancestors were saved in a big boat – Could not have even remotely been possible and account for the diversity we see today.
          5. Talking snakes – never been found in science.

          September 23, 2013 at 4:15 pm |
        • Topher

          OK ... now pick ONE and let's discuss it.

          September 23, 2013 at 4:34 pm |
        • Alias

          OH PLEASE pick Adam and Eve!
          Get rid of that one and you get rid of original sin!

          September 23, 2013 at 4:38 pm |
        • Joey

          Having a conversation about anything with Topher is like trying to teach Quantum Mechanics to a five year old.

          September 24, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      Make sure you pronounce it "Two-fer" because he was both illogical and unreasonable...

      September 23, 2013 at 2:04 pm |
  9. Bag Boy

    This is the evidence that Christians have for their belief systems:

    September 23, 2013 at 1:18 pm |
  10. Live4Him

    @Doc Vestibule : I like how apparently, people used to live to be 1,000 years old

    Dolly, the cloned sheep was cloned from a 6-yr old sheep. Sheep live to about 12 years, however, Dolly only lived 6 years. She was dying of old age issues when she was put-down. Scientist determined that the cloning process resulted in her having shorter telomeres than a typical new-born sheep. These telomeres of chromosomes shrink in length every time a cell divides. Thus, when they become too short then old-age issues arise. Likewise, if these telomeres were longer, then more years will pass before old-age issues occur. Thus, if longer telomeres existed, then a normal human lifespan could be 200, 500 or even 1000 years.

    September 23, 2013 at 1:04 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      Lie4him.
      incorrect.

      There are many, many other factors involved. You are trying to chrry pick science now.
      There is no indication that there is any such thing as pure DNA, it is subject to mutation all of the time, and to think that any form of pure DNA would lead to a longer life is PURE speculation.

      You really do need to stop trying to lie about science to a scientist.
      And you also need to stop lying about your bible to people who can read.

      September 23, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Tachyone are sub-atomic particles constantly moving faster than the speed of light.
      The slower they go, the more energy they emit.
      If we could artificially slow tachyons, we would have a source of unparelleled, perpetual energy.

      This is what we like to call "conjecture".
      Applying such conjecture as an explanation for the unlikely or impossible is known as "rationalization".

      Given that the average human life span has been steadily increasing, is it your conjecture that our telomeres are becoming longer?

      September 23, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
      • Live4Him

        @Doc Vestibule : Given that the average human life span has been steadily increasing, is it your conjecture that our telomeres are becoming longer?

        Lets clarify your statement here. What you're actually saying is that the average human life span with modern medicine is longer than the average human life span before modern medicines. Thus, one needs to determine the impact on modern medicine upon extending the human life span. Is it your contention that modern medicines have no impact on mitigating diseases that shorten human life?

        September 23, 2013 at 1:40 pm |
        • Joey

          Are you really this dense?

          September 23, 2013 at 1:48 pm |
        • frank

          It's true, Joey, Spin4Him really is that dense.

          September 23, 2013 at 2:04 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Ironically, teh study of telomeres has strengthened the "common descent" law of Darwinian evolution.
          All member of the hominidae family have 24 chromosome pairs, except for humans and neanderthals.
          Vestigial telomeres are normally found only at the ends of a chromosome, but in chromosome 2 in humand, there are additional telomere sequences in the middle.
          This is is the relic of an ancient telomere-telomere fusion and marks the point at which two ancestral ape chromosomes fused to give rise to human chromosome.

          September 23, 2013 at 3:06 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      "Erik Trinkaus, PhD, Professor of Anthropology in Arts & Sciences examined the fossil record to assess adult mortality for both groups, which co-existed in different regions for roughly 150,000 years. Trinkaus found that the proportions of 20 to 40 year old adults versus adults older than 40, were about the same for early modern humans and Neanderthals. Trinkaus admits, “Although biased, probably through a combination of preservation, age assessment, and especially Pleistocene mobility requirements, these adult mortality distributions suggest low life expectancy and demographic instability across these Late Pleistocene human groups.” – http://www.pasthorizonspr.com/index.php/archives/01/2011/longevity-unlikely-to-have-aided-early-modern-humans

      September 23, 2013 at 1:33 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Sorry to barge in, but I'm curious. If Jesus is eternally incarnate, how long are his telomeres?

      September 23, 2013 at 1:49 pm |
      • Just the Facts Ma'am...

        I'm more curious as to how many midichlorians Jesus must have...

        September 23, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
      •  

        Godless Vagabond
        Infinitely long, apparently. Which begs the question, "where does he keep them?"

        September 23, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
      • Live4Him

        @Tom, Tom, the Other One : Sorry to barge in, but I'm curious. If Jesus is eternally incarnate, how long are his telomeres?

        It depends upon which body – the earthly or the spiritual. If earthly, then the same length as typical people. If spiritual – there is no evidence that spiritual bodies have telomeres.

        September 23, 2013 at 2:14 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          There is no evidence that spritual bodies exist.

          September 23, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
        • Tom, Tom, the Other One

          Just so, Live4Him. No properties of spiritual bodies are known, including whether they are real or not.

          September 23, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
      • My Dog is a jealous Dog

        I'd like to know where Jesus got that Y chromosome – it wasn't from Mary. I guess we are created in god's image, since he apparently has DNA.

        September 23, 2013 at 3:12 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      Lie4him
      "Likewise, if these telomeres were longer, then more years will pass before old-age issues occur. Thus, if longer telomeres existed, then a normal human lifespan could be 200, 500 or even 1000 years."
      Incorrect. There is no proof of this, it is only speculation, and you will not find a single genetic scientist that would leap to your conclusion. While it may be possible to have the upper limit increased on lifespan, there is nothing to indicate that humans would benefit, and certainly not to a span of hundreds nor nearly 1000 years.. It has been tried in mice, not humans.

      You again, are lying by leaping to a conclusion that even the scientists that came up with the data would NEVER say, and then you post it as if it were truth.

      September 23, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
  11. Lionly Lamb

    What is Love without..?

    September 23, 2013 at 12:59 pm |
    • Bag Boy

      Gravy?

      September 23, 2013 at 1:01 pm |
  12. Bag Boy

    Topher, are you still around?

    September 23, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
    • Topher

      I'm here, dude. What's up?

      September 23, 2013 at 1:30 pm |
      • Bag Boy

        Topher, no offense but I have read every post on this article and you are clearly the least capable person here. I would recommend finding more like minded people that care and will believe you.

        September 23, 2013 at 1:32 pm |
        • Topher

          Bag Boy

          Capable of what?

          September 23, 2013 at 1:33 pm |
        • Bag Boy

          You are misunderstanding my use of the word "capable". Your English could use some work.

          September 23, 2013 at 1:35 pm |
        • Topher

          I understand what capable means. In what context is what I am asking about.

          September 23, 2013 at 1:38 pm |
        • Pole dancing for Jesus

          Topher. Least capable of comprehension and articulation.

          September 23, 2013 at 1:39 pm |
        • Bag Boy

          Topher, I am saying you are not mentally competent. Do you understand those words?

          September 23, 2013 at 1:40 pm |
        • Topher

          Is that all you've got? Ad hominems? Excuse making is getting harder and harder, isn't it?

          September 23, 2013 at 1:41 pm |
        • Bag Boy

          Topher, somebody loves you. I don't know who but we all have at least an aquatic frog the depends on us for food.

          September 23, 2013 at 1:44 pm |
  13. Just the Facts Ma'am...

    "Can Pope Francis make his vision a reality?" Well, he does seem to be squinting in the picture...

    September 23, 2013 at 12:25 pm |
  14. Bag Boy

    God did not feel science would be important to the world, but 3000 year old family trees? Hugely entertaining.

    September 23, 2013 at 12:24 pm |
    • Bag Boy

      And before you criticize my lack of research on the dates, I want to point out how exciting that will be to discuss. Much more interesting than science.

      September 23, 2013 at 12:26 pm |
      • Doc Vestibule

        I like how apparently, people used to live to be 1,000 years old and the laws of mendelian genetics (and thus inbreeding) didn't apply "in the beginning".

        September 23, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
        • Robert Brown

          Who was Cains wife? Who were those people he was worried would kill him? You have to deny the power of God, to deny God, they kind of go together.

          September 23, 2013 at 12:41 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          Aye, this always intrigued me when I was a pastor and I believed that some day the fossil and geological record would support the Genesis account. However, in the last decade they have compiled more and more evidence from ancient ho mosapian burials to a deeper understanding of our DNA that has shown that ancient man who was alive 20 – 30,000 years before any possible reading of Genesis places Adam and Eve, had the same potential life spans as we do today, though due to harsher environs and scare food sources and lack of most medical knowledge, they lived about as long as many great apes do today reaching 35-50 years of age.

          Now if there actually was an age where humans were living into their 800-900's then there would be evidence of this, yet there is not. I have heard the excuse "Well the global flood wiped out all evidence of those long lived ancient humans!" which would then require evidence of a global flood, but again, the geological record does not match the history presented in Genesis with no evidence of a global flood having occured in at least the last 150,000 years with many geologists doubting it could ever have happened since it would require far more water on our planet than currently exists requireing 4.4 billion cubic kilometers to cover the tallest mountains which no vapor canopy theory can account for. There is no doubt any longer, science, the fossil record and the geological record all show Genesis for what it is, total Myth.

          September 23, 2013 at 1:01 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          "You have to deny the power of God, to deny God, they kind of go together."

          Not really. If I have seen no evidence of divine power, then I don't have any reason to believe in God. If someone comes up to me and says "There is a God!" then I would expect that person to be able to produce some evidence of their claim. I'm not "denying God" but I am denying the person who comes to me with a claim of their God with zero evidence to support it.

          What it seems you are implying is that your God's power IS to break all the rules of evidence and thus when I say "You have no evidence of your God" you reply with "Oh yeah! Well that right there is evidence of his power to break all the rules and not provide any evidence!" Want evidence of a global flood? Not gooing to happen, God did it without leaving a trace. Want evidence of early human life spans of over 900 years as Genesis claims? Not going to happen because God did it without leaving any evidence, and in fact, left evidence to the contrary just to mess with those of little faith... Fossil record? Must have been Satan trying to fool us..."

          The fact is that your God's astounding lack of power is what proves your God false.

          September 23, 2013 at 1:26 pm |
        • Robert Brown

          The spirit and the flesh are at odds.

          I think science is very interesting and I’m thankful that God has blessed the human family with brilliant people. In many ways our lives in the flesh are made much better by science.

          For my soul and spirit I put my trust in an unchanging God over an ever changing discipline of man.

          September 23, 2013 at 1:29 pm |
    • Live4Him

      @Bag Boy : God did not feel science would be important to the world

      The science is there, if you bother to read it.

      The earth is a sphere (Job 26:10)
      Plate Tectonics / the earth was one continent (Gen 10:25)
      Gravity (Job 26:7)
      Universe composed of matter, energy and time (Gen 1:1-4)
      The sun has an orbit (Psa 19:6)

      September 23, 2013 at 12:45 pm |
      • Richard Cranium

        Lie4him
        The science is there if you lie about it.

        Lie4him

        The earth is a sphere (Job 26:10)

        What it says is "He marks out the horizon on the face of the waters for a boundary between light and darkness."
        Does not say the earth is a sphere. Lie #1

        Plate Tectonics / the earth was one continent (Gen 10:25)
        What it says "
        Two sons were born to Eber: One was named Peleg, because in his time the earth was divided; his brother was named Joktan."
        Does not mention tectonics at all. lie #2

        Gravity (Job 26:7)
        "He spreads out the northern skies over empty space;
        he suspends the earth over nothing"
        Never a mention of gravity. Lie #3

        Universe composed of matter, energy and time (Gen 1:1-4)
        "1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth 2By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. 3 Then God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.
        4 This is the account of the heavens and the earth when they were created, when the Lord God made the earth and the heavens."
        Never a mention of what the universe is composed of. Lie #4

        The sun has an orbit (Psa 19:6)
        "The sun rises at one end of the heavens and follows its course to the other end. Nothing can hide from its heat."
        It says the sun rises, it does not mention that its rising and fallinig is because the EARTH spins. It does not mention that the sun is on an orbit. Lie#5

        Why are you trying (unsuccessfully) to lie for your god?
        Do you not think that others can read? None of your claims are correct. Not even close.

        You have been caught flat out lying. Again.

        September 23, 2013 at 12:54 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Just to start somewhere in all of this mess, you DO realize that's not what Job said, right?
          Job 26:10 – “He has inscribed a circle on the surface of the waters at the boundary of light and darkness.
          In other words, when you look at the horizon, you see an arc – a circle. The earth is round. This idea is also reflected elsewhere in scripture...
          Isaiah 40:22
          Proverbs 8:27
          Job 22:14

          Also, the earth rotates, Job 38:14. Google the Nabonidus Cylinder to get an idea about what he's talking about.

          Now, do you want to explain to me why your "Lie#1" is a complete lie?

          September 23, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
        • Bag Boy

          Pulling out misc. examples of science in the Bible is not the point. Is the book for ancient Palestinians or for modern Christians?

          September 23, 2013 at 1:22 pm |
        • Live4Him

          @Richard Cranium : "He marks out the horizon on the face of the waters for a boundary between light and darkness." Does not say the earth is a sphere. Lie #1

          Lets look at another translation.

          He has inscribed a circle on hte fact of the waters at the between light and darkness.

          The Hebrew word for circle here is chug – which means to draw around. Thus, the better translation is circle. So, how does one get a circle from a moving light source? When the light source is perpendicular to a flat circle object, then one sees a circle. However, when it is not perpendicular then one sees an ellipse. Thus, we know it is not a flat circle. Therefore, it must be a three-dimensional object that is circular in shape – i.e. a sphere.

          This is strike 1.

          @Richard Cranium : "because in his time the earth was divided" Does not mention tectonics at all. lie #2

          Plate tectonics is a new term to describe the separation of Pangea (single continent) into multiple continents (i.e. dividing the earth).

          This is strike 2.

          @Richard Cranium : "he suspends the earth over nothing" Never a mention of gravity. Lie #3

          Gravity is a new term to describe a force acting upon matter (i.e. earth). The earth is currently suspending in space, spinning around the sun. This creates a centrifugal force. Gravity acts as the centripetal force in this equation – allowing the earth to be suspended over nothing.

          This is strike 3 – you're out.

          September 23, 2013 at 1:25 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Bag Boy, hey, tell that to Richard... I was just addressing his post where he wasn't telling the whole truth...
          And to answer your question, the answer is "yes." The Bible is pertinent to all generations, and all people, as its main objective is to remedy the human condition of inherant sinfulness, and reconcile yourself to God. It has been said that any man can read a book, but this book can read any man.

          September 23, 2013 at 1:28 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          Lie4him
          This is not baseball fool. I am not out. You are taking translations from some bible since I used a source that uses many and none of them mention your version.

          You are trying to stretch WAY too far. Genesis 1-4 ONLY says god made the heavens and earth. What you say is that you know what it was made from, and this is never mentioned. You just don't like the FACT that you have been caught lying. There are MANY bible "scholars" that whole heartedly dispute what YOU interpret your book to say.

          Thre truly are none so blind as those who think a book lets them see.

          September 23, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          Lie4him
          "Gravity is a new term to describe a force acting upon matter (i.e. earth). The earth is currently suspending in space, spinning around the sun. This creates a centrifugal force. Gravity acts as the centripetal force in this equation – allowing the earth to be suspended over nothing."

          There is nothing that allows the earth to be suspended over nothing. That is a wild misinterpretation of the forces involved. I still fail to see where you get gravity from your reference. NONE of what you site means what you are claiming it to mean.

          Gravity is the effect caused by matter being attracted to matter. nYour bible passage does not even come close to that.How you get gravity out of that is just you stretching the bible to fit what you want it to fit.

          Three stikes and I'm out? You have had hundreds of strikes which is why people refer to you as LIE4HIM. You are a known liar.

          September 23, 2013 at 1:43 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Lawrence, A disc would also give that arc. And don't forget that some editions of the bible "modernize" the text to give it the appearance of more current knowledge.

          September 23, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
      • Bill Deacon

        'Saint Paul tells us, "The letter kills, but the spirit gives life." (2 Cor 3:6) A man has been killed by the letter of the Sacred Scripture when he wants to quote it only so that people will think him to be very learned, . . . when he has no desire to follow the spirit of Sacred Scripture, but wants to know what it says only so he can explain it to others.'

        St. Francis of Assisi

        September 23, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
  15. Dyslexic doG

    If God is powerful enough to create the universe, don't you think he'd have a more foolproof way of getting his exact message across to future generations than this endlessly translated, edited, confused, modified, twisted, corrupted book of stories that is changed by religious power brokers to suit each generation?

    Wouldn't god's word be carved on the moon, unchangeable and for all to see? Wouldn't it be spoken unchanged by a species of animal? Wouldn't it be written microscopically on every stone or every tree? Wouldn't there be some space age material that had god's voice recorded, uncorrupted over the centuries and there for everyone to hear.

    Wouldn't there be parts of God's word that reflect computers or artificial intelligence or DNA or modern medicine or future medicine or electricity or space travel to other parts of this amazing universe he created? Wouldn't there be talk of gender and race equality? Wouldn't there be talk of Asia and Australia and the Americas and Europe and Africa?

    Instead the bible is limited to horses and carts and herbs and grain and swords and shields and misogyny and racism and slavery all set in the deserts of the middle east. The Bible is so obviously a product of bronze age man, you must be in denial to even argue that it is the word of god. There may or may not be a god or gods, but this book of bronze age voodoo and oppression has nothing to do with him, her or them.

    And stop it with this "not the word of god but words inspired by god" cop out. That just means it was written by greedy, evil men who got their way by claiming that god told them to do something. That's a self serving scam that should be scorned, especially by anyone claiming to love an omnipotent god. That scam is an abomination and an insult to your god ... as is the bible!

    September 23, 2013 at 12:19 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      No, I think your initial premise is wrong. It's popular, but it's wrong.

      September 23, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
      • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

        So you are saying the Christian god is intentionally obtuse Bill?

        September 23, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          No, I'm saying the way is already fool proof enough.

          September 23, 2013 at 12:50 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          Apparently it is not Bill. Plenty of people believe in other gods or do not believe in any god. The way is the opposite of "fool proof". It is actually inherently flawed.

          September 23, 2013 at 12:59 pm |
      • Bill Deacon

        I suppose we can reduce the argument you are making to "the way is flawed" if you like. I prefer "The pilgrims are flawed" as that has been my experience.

        September 23, 2013 at 1:14 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          Of course the "pilgrams are flawed". People are anything but perfect. But since your god is perfect he should have accounted for our imperfection. Instead he sent his illiterate "son" to sacrifice himself and the only reference to that is conflicting hearsay accounts. Could have your perfect god delivered his message in a better way? Of course. Instead you (and the church) play "blame the victim".

          September 23, 2013 at 1:32 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          We're full circle. I find not fault with the message of the Gospel and frankly can't really understand why you do.

          September 23, 2013 at 5:18 pm |
        • m murdoch

          Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          all atheists are liars
          all are going to hell
          all are lazy
          fat
          single
          older
          white women

          Of course the "pilgrams are flawed". People are anything but perfect. But since your god is perfect he should have accounted for our imperfection. Instead he sent his illiterate "son" to sacrifice himself and the only reference to that is conflicting hearsay accounts. Could have your perfect god delivered his message in a better way? Of course. Instead you (and the church) play "blame the victim".

          thanks gaaaaawwwwwwwwwd. lol

          u tell em dorothy

          September 23, 2013 at 5:23 pm |
      • m murdoch

        no. he's saying the atheist god has emotional problems and is a narcissist

        September 23, 2013 at 5:24 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Do you even know what atheist means?

          September 23, 2013 at 5:28 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      The word of God is alive, powerful, and timeless. Regardless of the time that has passed since it was written, it cuts to your very soul and spirit revealing your thoughts and intentions. It tells you unmistakably, what you are and what you need. The heart of man has not changed since it was written. God has not changed, his word is eternal.

      September 23, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
      • OKfine

        Pssst, Robert, it is a scam, sorry if I am the first to tell you.

        September 23, 2013 at 12:45 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          LOLOLOL

          September 23, 2013 at 2:51 pm |
      • AE

        Yes. The Bible points to a God that is alive and available today. He is still creating.

        September 23, 2013 at 12:48 pm |
        • Madtown

          He just has yet to create a way for his supposed divine message to be available to all his equal human creations. Maybe he's still working on it, we can only hope.

          September 23, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
        • Bag Boy

          AE, the Bible needs a face lift and update don't you think?

          September 23, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          Hey Madtwon, when have Christians ever said their God was fair? Fair skinned maybe, at least in all their depictions, but fair? Nope. As shown by the supposed Christian Churches for the last 1500 years or so, if you happen to be born in a country without access to information on Jesus, then you are just shlt out of luck and God doesn't really care about brown babies anyway because if he did he would have had them born to white mothers in Europe or America...

          September 23, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
        • AE

          – the Bible needs a face lift and update don't you think?

          No. I think it reveals truths about the nature of human beings and their relationship with their Creator that is still extremely relevant today.

          September 23, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          The writings of Shakespeare et al also reveal truths about the nature of human beings that are still extremely relevant today.. So nothing special about the bible – only the imagined relationship with their imaginary creator.

          September 23, 2013 at 5:31 pm |
        • Bob

          AE, you are on pretty shaky ground referencing the bible, that Christian book of nasty, when it presents horrid demands from your nasty sky fairy such as these, from both evil testaments:

          Numbers 31:17-18
          17 Now kiII all the boys. And kiII every woman who has slept with a man,
          18 but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man.

          Deuteronomy 13:6 – “If your brother, your mother’s son or your son or daughter, or the wife you cherish, or your friend who is as your own soul entice you secretly, saying, let us go and serve other gods … you shall surely kill him; your hand shall be first against him to put him to death”

          Revelations 2:23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.

          Leviticus 25
          44 “‘Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves.
          45 You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property.
          46 You can bequeath them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life, but you must not rule over your fellow Israelites ruthlessly.

          Note that the bible is also very clear that you should sacrifice and burn an animal today because the smell makes sicko Christian sky fairy happy. No, you don't get to use the parts for food. You burn them, a complete waste of the poor animal.

          Yes, the bible really says that, everyone. Yes, it's in Leviticus, look it up. Yes, Jesus purportedly said that the OT commands still apply. No exceptions. But even if you think the OT was god's mistaken first go around, you have to ask why a perfect, loving enti-ty would ever put such horrid instructions in there. If you think rationally at all, that is.

          And then, if you disagree with my interpretation, ask yourself how it is that your "god" couldn't come up with a better way to communicate than a book that is so readily subject to so many interpretations and to being taken "out of context", and has so many mistakes in it. Pretty pathetic god that you've made for yourself.

          So get out your sacrificial knife or your nasty sky creature will torture you eternally. Or just take a closer look at your foolish supersti-tions, understand that they are just silly, and toss them into the dustbin with all the rest of the gods that man has created.

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

          September 23, 2013 at 5:36 pm |
    • Lawrence of Arabia

      Actually, there were two instances where God Himself wrote something down for people.
      1) The 10 Commandments were written by the finger of God onto two stone tablets... Twice... (Exodus 10)
      2) The writing on the wall that spelled the doom of King Belshazzar... (Daniel 5)

      September 23, 2013 at 12:48 pm |
      • Fan2C

        Lawrence of Arabia,

        And where are these stellar gems of evidence?

        1. "Oooops! We lost 'em!"
        -or-
        2. "Shhhhh! It's a secret!"

        September 23, 2013 at 1:01 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Actually, I'm glad that things like that are no longer with us, or, just like the staff that Moses lifted up in the desert, it would be worshipped as a "connection to the divine."

          Here's a fact that is going to offend you – you wouldn't believe in God even if someone came back from the dead and told you what to expect when you die. You have Moses and the Prophets, believe them.

          September 23, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
        • Fan2C

          Lawrence,
          " you wouldn't believe in God even if someone came back from the dead and told you what to expect when you die"

          You seem to be saying that this "God" is totally stumped for a valid method of providing credible, verifiable evidence for *everyone* ...?

          September 23, 2013 at 1:36 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Ummm, no. The fact is, He did make Himself evidently known to all the world twice... Once in creation, and the second in the incarnation of Jesus. The fact is, we are far removed from each of those occurances, and sadly, man has steadily progressed in his wickedness, and has ever increasingly designed stories and fables to explain away his existence without God.

          We all have the same evidences, but the interpretation of the evidence depends upon what glasses you are looking at it through.

          September 23, 2013 at 1:48 pm |
        • Bob

          Lawrence, it is hardly reasonable for a "god" to expect us all to believe based on a 2000 year old fable and old text. Why can't your omnipotent creature present clear modern evidence of its existence?

          September 23, 2013 at 2:01 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          "Why can't your omnipotent creature present clear modern evidence of its existence?"

          I think it's pretty obvious that their God just hasn't taken any PowerPoint training courses. Once he took those stone carving courses 3000 years ago he figured that was enough to get his message accross... He might really want to think about completeing his continuing education credits before trying to use his God license again...

          Either that or he doesn't exist and it's been a bunch of con men who have been re-upping his application every few years...

          September 23, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
        • m murdoch

          Just the Facts Ma'am...
          "Why can't your omnipotent creature present clear modern evidence of its existence?"

          WRONG QUESTION MORON

          Y CAN'T FILTHY, DEMO-POSSESSED RETARDED FOOLS SEE THE ABUNDANCE OF OVERFLOWING EVIDENCE THAT GOD IS?

          September 23, 2013 at 5:28 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          murdoch, What evidence? Why do you post under so many different names?

          September 23, 2013 at 5:34 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Lawrence, You forgot the time when he showed himself to Joseph Smith.

          September 23, 2013 at 5:54 pm |
      • Doc Vestibule

        "The lord has given unto man these 15 (drops and smashes tablet) uhm... 10! 10 Commandments!"

        September 23, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
    • m murdoch

      Dyslexic doG
      If God is powerful enough to create the universe, don't you think he'd have a

      ur DOG don't exist.

      September 23, 2013 at 5:26 pm |
  16. Dyslexic doG

    One of the most perfect descriptions of the Christian mindset:

    “This is rather as if you imagine a puddle waking up one morning and thinking, 'This is an interesting world I find myself in — an interesting hole I find myself in — fits me rather neatly, doesn't it? In fact it fits me staggeringly well, must have been made to have me in it!' This is such a powerful idea that as the sun rises in the sky and the air heats up and as, gradually, the puddle gets smaller and smaller, frantically hanging on to the notion that everything's going to be alright, because this world was meant to have him in it, was built to have him in it; so the moment he disappears catches him rather by surprise.

    - Douglas Adams, The Salmon of Doubt

    September 23, 2013 at 12:18 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      "The life of a Christian is nothing but a perpetual struggle against self; there is no flowering of the soul to the beauty of its perfection except at the price of pain" (saying of Padre Pio).

      September 23, 2013 at 1:26 pm |
  17. OKfine

    BD, come on turn the other cheek it is part of your gig right. If you were actually anywhere near the Christian you claim to be people may not enjoy smacking you up the side of your head, verbally anyway. I am very judgemental, have even been on jury duty twice. Saying that you are a hypocrite; do you consider that Ad hominem?

    September 23, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
    • OKfine

      OOPS, meant for p. 11.

      September 23, 2013 at 12:17 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Np I'm with you. No I don't consider it an ad hominem. I think you have been very clear that you don't consider God the authority. You consider man the authority. You just happen to place your self, without due process btw, in authority over me. That doesn't mean you're estimation of me is wrong. It just means you've placed yourself into a system whereby the next guy with the bigger stick can justify his judgment of you. This is Jesus's conversation with Pilate. Pilate had the power to kill Jesus but he didn't have the ultimate authority over Jesus. You have the power to condemn me but you don't have any authority over my ultimate destiny.

      September 23, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
      • OKfine

        BD and you and your ugly religion want to have authority over people that want and should use contraceptives, of people that wish to control what they do with their bodies, of what destiny that happens after they die. I have no authority over you and simply do not want you to continue to have authority to brainwash people into your cult. The good news is there are more empty pews and more churches being torn down.

        September 23, 2013 at 12:42 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          If you didn't want to exercise authority over me, you wouldn't feel compelled to judge me.

          September 23, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
        • OKfine

          BD you spent a few comments yesterday or before passing judgement on Apple Bush because at one time he was an alcoholic and had marital problems. You seem to be able to judge people very easily but whine when someone does the same to you. I have no authority over you nor do I want to, the RCC has filled that role, but if I did have some authority I would order you to get deprogramed. Sorry about the delay had to look after a clients interests.

          September 23, 2013 at 4:17 pm |
        • OKfine

          Just in case you forgot BD on another thread to Apple Bush "You are a drunk who was lucky to hold onto your wife after she cheated on you..." That is why you are a hypocrite. I am compelled to judge you because of what you represent.

          September 23, 2013 at 4:33 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          Well, again, there's no contradiiction. You are perfectly welcome to accurately call me a hypocrite just as it is accurate that Apple is an alcoholic ( no such thing as used to be a pickle by the way). But you persist in trying to win the argument by detracting from my character when I am confessing to you that my character is less than stellar, as is Apple's as is yours. Unless you are prepared to tell me that you are an impeccable soul who should be revered as God on high. But wait, that is kind of what you keep saying isn't it? Why not climb down off your pedestal and accept reconciliation with the rest of us sinners?

          September 23, 2013 at 5:05 pm |
        • OKfine

          Sin is a religious concept that I am totally free from. If you chose to worship me I find you more foolish than I originally thought. Try A TV Evangelist type, I could not stand a cloying personality such as yours but I bet priests love you.

          September 23, 2013 at 5:36 pm |
      • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

        Same system Bill.

        god = stick

        September 23, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          how narrow your vision.

          September 23, 2013 at 1:27 pm |
      • Dippy

        Bill, it's "your," not "you're."

        September 23, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      To follow, what I think is that calling me a hypocrite in an effort to silence discussion of the topics the pope has tabled is counter productive. I'm interested in opening the dialogue whereby the Church turns down the rhetoric against people who are or have been marginalized by the judgment of people to the point the disqualify themselves from the balm of the Church's tenderness and the healing of her teachings.

      September 23, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
      • midwest rail

        "...the Church turns down the rhetoric against people who are or have been marginalized by the judgment of people..."
        Bill, agreed that that's a worthy goal, but hasn't it been the people of the Church hierarchy itself that have been doing the marginalizing ? Anyone who has left the church as a result will probably require a lot more than rhetoric to entice their return.

        September 23, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
        • Bill Deacon

          HI midwest. I think people generally hear what they want to hear. Whether by hierarchy or laity, I think people within the Catholic church have reacted in horror at the degradation of humanity they witness. Often that is expressed in strong "against" terms; the Church is "against this or against that". What Francis is advocating and what I have found myself within the Church are the things the Church is "for". As I have developed a larger appetiite for the "fors" the "against" make more sense to me.

          September 23, 2013 at 12:57 pm |
  18. Red

    How about a Catholic church that's more welcoming to its priests getting married, you know, so they won't become gay?

    September 23, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
    • Bill Deacon

      Not getting married doesn't make you gay.

      September 23, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
      • Red

        I never said that was the case. I'm not married and definitely not gay. But if you came out of your basement once in a while, you'd know of the controversy that has struck the Catholic church as far as priests molesting boys. Men molesting boys is a gay act no matter what you say. Might wanna learn what's going on in the world first before you comment on other people's posts. Anyone with a half of brain new what I was referring to.

        September 23, 2013 at 9:01 pm |
        • doobzz

          "Anyone with a half of brain new what I was referring to"

          Anyone with half a brain can see that you have no brain.

          September 24, 2013 at 11:07 am |
    • Bag Boy

      That is my number one priority, people "turning" gay.

      September 23, 2013 at 12:20 pm |
  19. m murdoch

    no evidence for god, but he created cancer, so he don't exist and we hate him, though atheists cannot hate what ain't there, which proves god's existence as ole

    September 23, 2013 at 12:13 pm |
  20. m murdoch

    god created evil, ergo, he don't exist.

    god created good, ergo he must exist

    September 23, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      "god created evil, ergo, he don't exist."

      man created the education system that includes learning proper grammar, ergo, you did not attend.

      September 23, 2013 at 12:30 pm |
    • Dippy

      And he's never learned capital letters so, ergo, he doesn't capitalize anything.

      September 23, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
      • a reasonable atheist

        That effectively doubles the size of the alphabet. Which can be quite taxing for some. I mean, you have over 50(!) letters, all these punctuation marks, rules about "subject-verb agreement," and people jump all over you for using an ellipsis anywhere but where it is proper...

        September 24, 2013 at 9:32 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Advertisement
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.