home
RSS
October 1st, 2013
09:52 AM ET

Study: American Jews losing their religion

By Daniel Burke, CNN Belief Blog Co-editor

(CNN) - The number of nonreligious Jews is rising in the United States, with more than one in five saying they are not affiliated with any faith, according to a new survey.

While similar trends affect almost every American religion, Jewish leaders say the new survey spotlights several unique obstacles for the future of their faith.

According to the survey, conducted by Pew Research Center's Religion & Public Life Project, non-religious Jews are less likely to care deeply about Israel, donate to Jewish charities, marry Jewish spouses and join Jewish organizations.

Pew says their study sought to explore the question, "What does being Jewish in America mean today?" The answer is quite complicated.

Just 15% of American Jews say that being Jewish is mainly a religious matter, according to Pew's survey. By contrast, more than six in 10 say Jewishness is about culture, ancestry and identity.

The most essential parts of being Jewish, according to American Jews, are remembering the Holocaust (73%), leading an ethical life (69%) and working for social justice and peace (56%).

Almost as many American Jews say that having good sense of humor (42%) is as important to their Jewish identity as caring about Israel (43%).

Even among religious Jews, most say it's not necessary to believe in God to be Jewish, and less than one in three say religion is very important to their lives.

Nearly all American Jews  - religious and secular - say they are proud to be Jewish.

"The fact that many Jews tell us that religion is not particularly important to them doesn't mean that being Jewish is not important to them," said Greg Smith, director of religious surveys for the Pew Research Center.

The most essential parts of being Jewish, according to the survey, are remembering the Holocaust (73%), leading an ethical life (69%) and working for social justice and peace (56%).

Overall, the majority of Jews (78%) call themselves religious, but the survey showed much lower rates of religious affiliation among millennials, one of several trends that trouble Jewish leaders.

Nearly a third of American Jews born after 2000 answered "none" when asked about their religious affiliation, suggesting that Jewish "nones" are not only a large group, they're growing, Smith said.

The rise of Jewish "nones" tracks with wider trends in the American population, where about a third of millennials don't affiliate with organized religion.

The nonpartisan Pew Research Center says its survey is the most comprehensive since the National Jewish Population Survey in 2000-2001.

Pew surveyed 3,475 Jews from across the country from February 20 to June 13, with a margin of error for the full sample of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

The study declines to offer a definitive estimate of the size of the American Jewish population, a matter of heated debate in recent years.

Instead, Pew offered several tallies of American Jews, depending on different definitions of Jewish identity.

Approximately 4.2 million American adults - 1.8% of the overall population - identify as Jewish by religion. In the 1950s, the percentage of religious Jews in the United States was nearly twice as high, according to Pew.

Meanwhile, about 1.2 million adult Americans now identify as secular or cultural Jews - they were raised Jewish, had a Jewish parent and still consider themselves Jewish, even though they don't practice the religion, according to Pew.

Secular Jews are much more likely to marry outside the faith, according to Pew, a trend that has worried Jewish leaders in recent years.

Nearly 60% of American Jews who have married since 2000 have a non-Jewish spouse, according to Pew.

Intermarried Jews, like secular Jews, are much less likely to raise their children in the Jewish faith and have weaker ties to the Jewish community, says Pew's report.

But, in a silver lining for Jewish leaders, intermarriage rates have leveled off, Smith said, holding steady at 60% since the mid-1990s.

Jane Eisner, editor-in-chief of the Jewish Daily Forward, said she is not surprised that the study found relatively low interest in Jewish religious beliefs.

"We are a people very much defined by what we do, rather than what we believe," she said.

But Eisner said she is concerned that millennials are less likely to donate to Jewish charities, care strongly about Israel or belong to Jewish groups.

"It's great that these non-religious Jews feel pride in being Jewish," Eisner said. "What worries me is their tenuous ties to the community."

- CNN Religion Editor

Filed under: Belief • Judaism • Polls • Trends

soundoff (1,967 Responses)
  1. SJ

    I am not ignorant because I'm religious

    October 3, 2013 at 3:21 pm |
    • Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

      Incorrect... 'ignorant' and 'religious' are synonyms

      October 3, 2013 at 3:26 pm |
      • SJ

        You couldn’t be more wrong.
        Here are the definitions I got at websters:
        Ignorant-a lack of knowledge, understanding, or education
        Religious- believing in a God or a group of gods and following the rules of a religion

        October 3, 2013 at 3:29 pm |
        • Lol

          Ya, see.. same thing!

          October 3, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
        • SJ

          No sir Mr. Lol.

          Believing in something doesn’t mean you are ignorant of the subject matter.

          October 3, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
        • Joey

          Not ignorant of the subject matter just ignorant in general.

          October 3, 2013 at 3:59 pm |
      • Bezalel

        Umm...no. You are incorrect.

        October 3, 2013 at 3:29 pm |
        • Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

          You are right, I made a mistake... I meant to say 'delusional', 'religious' and 'dumbass' are synonyms

          October 3, 2013 at 3:36 pm |
        • SJ

          No Sir.

          Some very intelligent individuals believe are religious.

          October 3, 2013 at 3:42 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          SJ, Intelligent people can be delusional and even ignorant on some topics.

          October 3, 2013 at 3:51 pm |
        • SJ

          Well, are the ignorant and delusional if they believe God exists?

          October 3, 2013 at 4:09 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Isn't that the definition of delusional – belief in something for which there is no evidence and that is contradicted by available evidence?

          October 3, 2013 at 4:37 pm |
      • Heads Up

        Sea Otter,

        Believers are often unable to detect facetiousness. *sigh*

        October 3, 2013 at 3:33 pm |
        • Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

          They believe the crap in the bible is real... so I keep my expectations of them low...

          October 3, 2013 at 3:38 pm |
        • SJ

          I am able to detect the facetious sigh, Heads Up.

          October 3, 2013 at 3:44 pm |
      • Live4Him

        Ignorant atheists, ignorant Muslims, ignorant Christians, ignorant pagan, who is left? So, you're saying that everyone is ignorant? Somehow this just doesn't seem reasonable. After all, how could an ignorant atheist know something that takes intellect?

        October 3, 2013 at 3:48 pm |
        • My Dog is a jealous Dog

          Yes – everyone IS ignorant. I don't know everything, and neither do you. Only the arrogant claim otherwise.

          October 3, 2013 at 3:54 pm |
        • Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

          Let me use a @Live4Him tactic... "I don't recall saying EVERYONE is ignorant" now I will proceed to ignore all further inputs from people that will discredit what I just stated... and start a new thread so that I don't have to respond to any questions from this thread...

          October 3, 2013 at 3:55 pm |
    • Lisa

      More like you're religious because you're ignorant.

      October 4, 2013 at 8:05 am |
  2. niknak

    Really slow day here at the make believe person's blog.
    Maybe all the fundies are out supporting their GObP congressman to make sure all the safety nets for the poor are dismantled.
    Because nothing proves how much you love and follow Jesus like making sure the poor go hungry.

    October 3, 2013 at 3:13 pm |
    • Paddy

      Must be slow because your trollish behavior is so apparent today.

      October 3, 2013 at 3:23 pm |
  3. Doris

    Questions that fundamentalist theists seem to avoid in general:

    1. Why is it so reasonable to believe what men wrote millenia ago about their God should be taken seriously when many things, much more real and present to them, were often so horribly misunderstood then and misrepresented in their writings?

    2. A belief in the Abrahamic God involves the notion of "objective truth" – that is, certain object and moral truths that allegedly come straight from God. The question is, where can anyone point to such a truth and claim they came by it objectively? One might claim they did from a voice from God or a thought entering their mind, but they can never produce evidence. They can only ask their audience to believe. (Subjectivity enters the room.) I have yet to have anyone show me any purely objective truth – something that does not involve some kind of consensus.

    Questions that some fundamentalist Christians seem to avoid in general (or at least ones where the answers are quite empty):

    1. Some Christians unsurprisingly refute that Christianity did not borrow some of its story from similar messianic stories that were floating around during the Gospel and post-Gospel periods. But why then did some of the prominent early Christian apologists (Justin Martyr and others) come up with this excuse that Satan, via "plagiarism in anticipation", had planted earlier "fake" stories to come before the "real Gospel" stories (to confuse the devout)?

    2. There do seem to be many things wrapped up nice and neatly in the New Testament – ideas and ideals that look back on one another. But each time we get to a place where me might expect the stories there to hook well to something on the outside that would give good verification of the stories, we seem to come to a dead-end. How much do historians agree over who Peter was and what he actually wrote? Who exactly are the 500? What are their names? Did they write anything? Who actually wrote about them where it was not just a hearsay account? Who really authored the Gospels?

    October 3, 2013 at 2:06 pm |
    • Doris

      Correction for first line of paragraph numbered with "2": ... certain objective ...

      October 3, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
    • Doris

      Correction for second #1:

      that Christianity borrowed (since this was preceded by "refute")

      October 3, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
    • Topher

      Doris

      "1. Why is it so reasonable to believe what men wrote millenia ago about their God should be taken seriously when many things, much more real and present to them, were often so horribly misunderstood then and misrepresented in their writings?"

      Like what?

      October 3, 2013 at 2:23 pm |
      • Doris

        "Like what?" ??? You need examples of things in the real world that were previously misunderstood thousands of years ago? Really, Topher????

        October 3, 2013 at 2:38 pm |
        • Topher

          Doris

          "You need examples of things in the real world that were previously misunderstood thousands of years ago? Really, Topher????"

          Well, yes. You're making a claim that, in your mind at least, disproves the Bible. So do you actually have something or not?

          October 3, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
        • Doris

          Topher, Topher, Topher, you have horribly misunderstood me. But, OK. Here is an example.

          Several thousand years ago, men did not understand what caused rainbows. OK? We know that now. The Norse saw it as Bifrost (a bridge); Judeo-Christian traditions signs it as a covenant with God not to destroy the world by means of floodwater.

          My initial question is about how much credibility is deserving of men from millenia ago regarding purported "supernatural" experiences and explanations in light of how much they lacked in understanding what we now consider our obvious, physical existence today? I am comparing the nature of men and their understanding between times, not specifically talking about anything within your good book there.

          October 3, 2013 at 3:28 pm |
        • Topher

          Doris

          "Topher, Topher, Topher, you have horribly misunderstood me. But, OK. Here is an example."

          Entirely possible.

          "Several thousand years ago, men did not understand what caused rainbows. OK? We know that now. The Norse saw it as Bifrost (a bridge); Judeo-Christian traditions signs it as a covenant with God not to destroy the world by means of floodwater."

          I know what you're saying. But it was't like they just looked in the sky, saw a rainbow and said, "That must be God." It was God telling them this is what it was. "And God said, This is the token of the covenant which I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations: I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth." Genesis 9:12-13.

          "My initial question is about how much credibility is deserving of men from millenia ago regarding purported "supernatural" experiences and explanations in light of how much they lacked in understanding what we now consider our obvious, physical existence today?"

          But these passages aren't giving any dispute on light passing through water and giving us the rainbow. They didn't need to know how it worked. That wasn't the point. The point is that God said the "bow" is a sign of His covenant.

          October 3, 2013 at 3:40 pm |
        • Doris

          Doris. OK, Topher. I believe you've missed my point again. But I guess I'll just have to assume that when a nut falls out of a tree next to you, that it really makes no difference (and is evidently not important) how we try to relate the event to our current consensus understanding of the universe, you'll just be content thinking that your God consciously caused it to happen. Well at least you approached the question. Thanks.

          October 3, 2013 at 4:14 pm |
        • Winnie Ille Pu

          Doris,

          Topher is precious sometimes, isn't he?

          “When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.”

          October 3, 2013 at 4:44 pm |
      • OKfine

        Doris
        Topher asks the same stupid questions over and over again. He is playing some sort of silly game or is just very, very simple, like a small child trying to learn, but in the case Topher just to aggravate.

        October 3, 2013 at 2:44 pm |
        • sam stone

          Topher is now gopher. He is not here to discuss anything. He is here to preach

          He is a coward

          If he ever WAS an atheist, he was likely as stupid and unconvincing as an atheist as he is as a christian

          Come on, gopher, blather some more empty proxy threats

          coward

          October 3, 2013 at 3:42 pm |
      • OKfine

        Topher, I have to agree with sam stone here, you ran away from the other thread when you could not provide an answer. So were you as much of a coward before being born again as a creationist apologist than you now are? How screwed up were you before you reached out for the crutch? You said you broke every commandment of your new delusion, should you not be incarcerated, why are you walking around free?

        October 3, 2013 at 4:02 pm |
        • OKfine

          On two threads when Topher is backed into a corner he resorts to " god is going to get you just wait and see, you'll get yours at the judgement day". Sort of like my dad is tougher than your dad I heard as a child. I can not state that Topher is an idiot, he is not, but he is mentally immature, child like in his beliefs.

          October 3, 2013 at 4:49 pm |
    • Bezalel

      "Some Christians unsurprisingly refute that Christianity did not borrow some of its story from similar messianic stories that were floating around during the Gospel and post-Gospel periods."

      Probably because the culture that Christinaity rose from was xenophobic and it makes no sense that they would purposely inject other faiths into their own.

      "But why then did some of the prominent early Christian apologists (Justin Martyr and others) come up with this excuse that Satan, via "plagiarism in anticipation", had planted earlier "fake" stories to come before the "real Gospel" stories (to confuse the devout)?"

      No one said Justin knew what he was talking about or that he had the whole picture. As I pointed out to those that bring up Apollonius of Tyana as a comparisson to Jesus, the writings involving Apollonius came after 200CE while all of Christianity's writings were already established and thus makes it more likely that those writings about Apollonius took from Christianity. Did that mean those people were trying to mislead people or they just didn't have all the facts? I say they just didn't have all the facts like Justin probably didn't.

      In regards to historical writings, there are alaways things missing for many different reasons. One must keep in mind not to apply modern cultural thinking to that of the ancients. If the gospels were written today, I am sure they would include what brand of sandals Jesus liked to wear and whether Peter had a combover or not. But the purpose of the gospels and the early history in Acts wasn't meant to be a biography as we see it today.
      Also as one pointed out, early Christianity was aimed toward the masses. The masses of the ancient world were mostly illiterate and the odds of personal letters existing are slim. Heck, even with historical figures like Washington, we don't have many personal letters around because he had most of them destroyed. You would think there would be numerous sketches from the famed artist Michelangelo but there isn't because he destroyed most of his. So the lack of evidence should not be taken as an instant "it never happened" perspective.

      October 3, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
      • Doris

        People would obviously be much more concerned about what all of Washington's personal letters contained if there were a number of people believing that he rose from the dead.

        I'm arguing your reasoning as to why certain things would not be known. I just don't see that you've added anything that would help convince me to believe.

        October 3, 2013 at 2:36 pm |
        • Doris

          Excuse me Balezel – I meant to start that one line with "I'm *not* arguing your reasoning as to why certain things would not be known. "

          October 3, 2013 at 2:40 pm |
        • Doris

          *Bezalel*

          October 3, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
        • Bezalel

          I'm not trying to convince you to believe in anything. Not my purpose on here.

          October 3, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
        • Doris

          Bez: "..not trying to convince.. " OK. Cool beans.

          You also said: "So the lack of evidence should not be taken as an instant "it never happened" perspective."

          I agree.

          October 3, 2013 at 2:59 pm |
    • Doris

      Finally, another avoided question for the first category. And that is,

      3. Why did the Abrahamic God only seem to concern "itself" with the peoples of the area of the world from whence the stories about "it" came? We now know that for thousands of years, people in various tropic regions learned to remove the naturally-occurring cyanide from cassava (yuca, manioc, tapioca). Where are the warnings about such in the OT to go along with the other food preparation warnings contained therein? I'm sure others can come up with many other examples. The point is, how is the OT not so obviously self-serving to the people of the area where it was written?

      October 3, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
      • Bezalel

        "Why did the Abrahamic God only seem to concern "itself" with the peoples of the area of the world from whence the stories about "it" came?"

        Unknown. Most people try not to presume to guess why others act the way they do.

        "Where are the warnings about such in the OT to go along with the other food preparation warnings contained therein?"

        Why don't we tell Eskimos that penguins are safe to eat? Probably because they would never ever see one. It would be pointless. It would make sense that if someone was telling a specific group of people something, it would be info that pertains to them,

        October 3, 2013 at 2:51 pm |
        • Doris

          That's interesting, Bez. What you wrote certainly makes sense to me regarding how the Bible came to be. I'm not sure it addressed my final point. In thinking of it more, though – it really should be in both categories.

          October 3, 2013 at 3:12 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Necessary and contingent truths are what they struggle with. The Abrahamic God is contingent. They may hope to prove that the God of Abraham exists without dealing with the problem of God as a necessary being. Actually, I know they just believe it because it feels right to believe.

      October 3, 2013 at 2:55 pm |
      • Bezalel

        Actually, I know Tom just thinks he knows because it feels right to him.

        October 3, 2013 at 3:26 pm |
    • niknak

      DorisDay, you will find that no matter how many holes you find in their various myths, the believer will never let go of his/her security blanket.

      It is charming when a young child has an imaginary friend, but very creepy when an adult does.

      October 3, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
      • Bezalel

        It is sad because so many adults on here keep making positive claims about the effect Horus..etc had on Christianity but they have no facts to back up their belief. Pretty pitiful right Nak?

        October 3, 2013 at 3:28 pm |
      • Oncler

        @nik
        funny how your talking about holes in a position when the naturalist position has a plethora of holes. Don'y be delusional like if whatever position you hold is lock tight.

        October 3, 2013 at 3:43 pm |
    • Doris

      Well thank you to the responders. So far only #2 in the first category remains unanswered.

      October 3, 2013 at 3:36 pm |
      • Doris

        lol – well let me clarify that – the only one not yet approached...

        October 3, 2013 at 3:38 pm |
      • Bezalel

        There is a problem in that there is no cocensus on even the basics. But...if one is Christian, then God is the objective perspective.
        If one is atheist, then there can be no accepted objective perspective.

        October 3, 2013 at 4:06 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          How can a god be an objective perspective? There's no evidence for a god so how can the perspective be objective. Belief in a god is subjective.

          October 3, 2013 at 4:49 pm |
        • Bezalel

          Oy..again...if one is a Christian, then they would say that God is the objective perspective.

          October 3, 2013 at 4:58 pm |
  4. Lionly Lamb

    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mFBBTnv5Xbs&w=640&h=360]

    October 3, 2013 at 1:53 pm |
  5. Tom, Tom, the Other One

    HIV-2 types

    October 3, 2013 at 1:48 pm |
  6. aallen333

    Your THRONE, O GOD, will last for ever and ever; a scepter of justice will be the scepter of your kingdom. You love righteousness and hate wickedness; THEREFORE GOD, YOUR GOD, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy. (Psalm 45:6-7)

    "I will proclaim the Lord’s decree: He said to me, “You are my SON; today I have become your father. Ask me, and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession. You will break them with a rod of iron; you will dash them to pieces like pottery.” Therefore, you kings, be wise; be warned, you rulers of the earth. Serve the Lord with fear and celebrate his rule with trembling. Kiss HIS SON, or he will be angry and your way will lead to your destruction,
    for his wrath can flare up in a moment. Blessed are all who take refuge in him. (Psalm 7-12)

    October 3, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      It's hard to know who these Psalms might be talking about, but I'm sure you have some idea.

      October 3, 2013 at 1:45 pm |
      • aallen333

        It seems to me there is only one person in history whom these Words can refer to.

        October 3, 2013 at 2:04 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Amaterasu

          October 3, 2013 at 3:48 pm |
    • Shake's Pear

      aallen333,

      You cite rhapsodic flights of fancy from primitive Israelis.

      October 3, 2013 at 1:52 pm |
      • aallen333

        These Words are the truth, and the truth will set you free.

        October 3, 2013 at 2:01 pm |
        • sam stone

          Will it make you stop capitalizing random words?

          October 3, 2013 at 3:46 pm |
    • Rah Ra!

      aallen333,

      "Thou spreadest out thy wings …
      … thou performest thy acts of creation in thy Great Disk.
      Praise be unto thee, O Ra, exalted Power, thou World-soul who
      resteth on his high place …
      … Thou sendest light unto thy Circle, thou makest darkness to be in thy
      Circle …thou enterest thy Circle...
      … Thou goest in and comest out, thou comest out and goest in to thy
      hidden Circle …
      … lord of souls who art in the house of thine obelisk … Sphinx-god,
      Obelisk-god …"

      October 3, 2013 at 2:02 pm |
      • aallen333

        If you allow confusion into your life, you will never come to the knowledge of the truth.

        October 3, 2013 at 2:09 pm |
    • Jumpin' Jupiter

      aallen333,

      Deathless Lord of the Vastness [Jupiter], the gods learn from you how to participate in holy ceremonies. As the light of the Sun creates the rays of the Moon, you create all religion. Chase away the gloom and hatred. Mount your chariot, which destroys foes, slays demons, frees the needy and finds the light.

      You preserve humanity by leading us with your wisdom. One who admires you finds no grief. Those who hate you receive wise punishment which evolves their opinions to higher levels.

      Sorrow, distress, foes, fears, weaknesses and seductions flee from the person you guard. You guard us with wisdom and show us the path, so we sing to you now. Bring to ruin any traps set for us. Protect us from the evil, arrogant ra.pists who attack without just cause. Turn them from our path, and lead us instead to heavenly places. Rg Veda (2.23)

      October 3, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
      • aallen333

        See response to Ra Rah's comment.

        October 3, 2013 at 2:10 pm |
    • Zoomin' Zeus

      Most glorious of immortals, Zeus
      The many named, almighty evermore,
      Nature's great Sovereign, ruling all by law
      Hail to thee! On thee 'tis meet and right

      That mortals everywhere should call.
      From thee was our begetting; ours alone
      Of all that live and move upon the earth
      The lot to bear God's likeness.
      Thee will I ever chant, thy power praise!

      For thee this whole vast cosmos, wheeling round
      The earth, obeys, and where thou leadest
      It follows, ruled willingly by thee.
      In thy unconquerable hands thou holdest fast,
      Ready prepared, that two-timed flaming blast,
      The ever-living thunderbolt:
      Nature's own stroke brings all things to their end.
      By it thou guidest aright the sense instinct
      Which spreads through all things, mingled even
      With stars in heaven, the great and small-
      Thou who art King supreme for evermore!

      October 3, 2013 at 2:09 pm |
      • aallen333

        See response to Jumpin Jupeiter's comment.

        October 3, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
    • K-switch

      Tell me more about the "oil of joy". Is that like the warming KY?

      October 3, 2013 at 2:10 pm |
    • Psongwriter

      Your high-flown paeans are age-old and quite common... written by and for people looking for an emotional buzz-on.

      October 3, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
    • Ben

      aallen333
      Ever read the poem Ozymandias? All the ancients thought that their thing would last forever, even the Hebrews. Guess what, they were wrong.

      October 3, 2013 at 2:38 pm |
    • niknak

      Phuck god.

      October 3, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
      • aallen333

        The fool spoke boldly until he saw the terror before him.

        October 3, 2013 at 3:22 pm |
        • Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

          Sayeth the fool... so we better all listen to him...

          October 3, 2013 at 3:46 pm |
        • sam stone

          Without the steady blah, blah, fvcking blah of empty proxy threats, where would christianity be?

          October 3, 2013 at 4:04 pm |
  7. bostontola

    If there were a few less errors and a single unknown revelation in the bible, no one would question god's existence. magine in Genesis a small addition where it is stated that god created microbes on day 1.

    You can't see microbes with the naked eye but they are the oldest form of life on earth. Without microbes, we couldn’t eat or breathe whereas without us, they’d be just fine. There are ten times more microbes in/on your body than the number of cells with your DNA.

    It's amazing that the bible mentions so many things that rely on or are microbes, but never mentions that god created the almighty enabler, microbes. Genesis talks about god creating plants, but plants can't live without their microbes. Bread, beer, wine, vinegar use microbes to make those items in the bible. The bible talks about cheese, but no mention of Lactobacilli. Many diseases and plagues are discussed, no mention of the microbial causes.

    Microbes have a better claim as the source of all other life on this planet than any god does. They pull nitrogen from the atmosphere, that is the basis of all proteins in everything alive today (although humans pull nitrogen for fertilizers with technology). They transformed our atmosphere by emitting oxygen. They pull an enormous amount of CO2 out of the atmosphere and are factories of basic organic molecules for the rest of life.

    It's absurd that the foundation of life on this planet isn't mentioned in the bible. If it were, I might be a believer.

    October 3, 2013 at 1:22 pm |
    • lol??

      Some have died sniffin' nitrous oxide.One might say they died laughing.

      October 3, 2013 at 1:38 pm |
      • Jericho

        You wouldn't know, having only one tooth in your mouth to deal with.

        October 3, 2013 at 1:43 pm |
      • bostontola

        I'm not sure, but are you saying you find the OP funny?

        October 3, 2013 at 1:43 pm |
    • A Frayed Knot

      bostontola,

      Spot on!

      October 3, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
    • niknak

      You and I both know that the babble is void of many of the things that makes life here on earth live.
      Also void on continents that were yet undiscovered at the time those goat herders made up this myth.

      But that won't stop the brainless believers from still going along with the scam.
      Or killing your children to prove how much they love god(s).

      A mind is a terrible thing to lose, to religion......

      October 3, 2013 at 3:07 pm |
  8. PeterVN

    Still my fav blog quote:

    "Religion is for the ignorant, the stupid, the cowardly, and the gullible, and for those who would profit from them."

    Losing religion generally is a good thing for America. Bring it on.

    October 3, 2013 at 12:33 pm |
    • lol??

      Dreamy genie from holywood, "Your wish is my command. Watch my show and support the sponsors!"

      October 3, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
      • Kurt

        hyrocket, go get your head examined. It's high time you did.

        October 3, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
    • Arctic Pachyderm

      Peter: if there was a Like button I'd step on it re your post. Like Like Like.

      October 3, 2013 at 12:50 pm |
    • SJ

      Oh come on. I’m religious and I’m not ignorant, stupid, cowardly, or gullible.

      October 3, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
      • Vizzini

        Oh come on. I may be a pig but we don't all love to roll in the mud... oh, wait, I just remembered, we do actually...

        October 3, 2013 at 1:35 pm |
        • SJ

          Well, THIS pig isn’t ignorant, stupid, cowardly, or gullible.

          October 3, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
        • Vizzini

          and i'm sure THIS pig doesn't taste very good at all which is why Jews don't partake of my backsides...

          October 3, 2013 at 2:08 pm |
        • SJ

          I don’t think it has to do with taste. It’s part of their faith.

          October 3, 2013 at 2:12 pm |
      • PJ

        Look again, SJ. >1 of the categories sure fits you like a glove.

        October 3, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
        • SJ

          How would you know? You never met me before.

          October 3, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
        • PJ

          You are a believer of ridiculous stuff. Q.E.D.

          October 3, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
    • Bezalel

      How is it a "good" thing Peter? Or do you actually mean you think it's a good thing, whether it is or is not?

      October 3, 2013 at 1:16 pm |
      • PJ

        Like the bible is right, except when it's wrong?

        October 3, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
        • Bezalel

          As are you.

          October 3, 2013 at 7:52 pm |
  9. Doris

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RxiLnC7ikw8

    October 3, 2013 at 11:54 am |
    •  

      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RxiLnC7ikw8&w=640&h=360]

      October 3, 2013 at 11:54 am |
      • lol??

        You have, ahem, open pwogwessive relationships??

        October 3, 2013 at 12:00 pm |
        •  Doris

          I know it hurts your tiny head to try to come out of the stone age, but at least you should try harder to keep up with the posts.

          October 3, 2013 at 12:25 pm |
  10. lol??

    Gen 28:14 And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south: and in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed.

    Don't get messed up with plurals, no matter how the mob votes.

    Gal 3:16 Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.

    October 3, 2013 at 11:48 am |
    • Inquiry & verification of the fundy mindset...how does it work?

      ... pretty much like this:

      [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4YIj4rLYo0c&w=640&h=360]

      October 3, 2013 at 11:51 am |
      • lol??

        Masters saddled with socie PUblic debt. Run faster!! How's that socialized offensive Defense spending working out??

        October 3, 2013 at 12:43 pm |
        • Jericho

          I see you have no clue what socialism is, still, and yet you keep parroting the fat pill addict. And yeah, our military is based on socialist principles what with their salary, housing, etc. You would rather hire mercs? Idiot. Go eat some "freedom fries", you old fraud. You're a disgrace to God and country.

          October 3, 2013 at 1:11 pm |
      • lol??

        Jericho, you wrappin' yasef in a flag?? The pledge came frum a socie ya know. SELLIN' flags!!

        October 3, 2013 at 1:20 pm |
        • Jericho

          No, facism will show up grasping a cross and wrapped in a flag. I also noticed that you were all over that page bitching about having "Under God" taken out of the Pledge, restoring it to its original state.
          Wrap yourself in your false piety even as you cash those government checks and upping your EBT cards, you toothless hick.

          October 3, 2013 at 1:49 pm |
  11. Bill Deacon Jr

    My dad swore on the catechism that he has never actually, or even thought of eating beaver.

    October 3, 2013 at 11:32 am |
    • HotAirAce

      Did you check with your mom?

      October 3, 2013 at 11:51 am |
  12. Doc Vestibule

    Beavers are fish, according to the RCC.
    As a form of penance in honor of the death of Jesus Christ on the Cross on Good Friday, Catholics are supposed to abstain from eating meat on Fridays.
    When Catholic explorers came to the new world, their diets obviously changed to what could be found in the local environment. In order to make sure they were pleasing the Pope, these early settlers wrote to the Vatican for clarification of what was meat and what was considered fish (which is OK to eat on friday).
    So it turns out that pretty much any animal that spends a lot of time in the water is considered a fish. This includes beavers, alligators, manatees, otters, penguins, capybaras, turtles etc.
    If you head down to Venezuela, they still eat capybaras during lent!
    Mmmm... enormous ichthyan rodent.....

    October 3, 2013 at 11:20 am |
    • Madtown

      "Nice Beaver!" – LT. Frank Drebin, from the Naked Gun

      October 3, 2013 at 11:28 am |
      • Athy

        To Priscilla Presley, who had the beaver.

        October 3, 2013 at 11:39 am |
    • Doris

      "If you head down to Venezuela, they still eat capybaras during lent!"

      Hmm – I'd love to know what kind of spices one would have to use to make something like that appealing.

      I'm guessing the early RC must have thought platypus were straight from Satan himself – sent to confuse men about birds and fish.

      October 3, 2013 at 11:30 am |
      • Doc Vestibule

        Just as bats were sent to confuse us about birds and mammals.

        October 3, 2013 at 11:34 am |
      • Doris

        Another capybara home
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IhYLOa279EY

        October 3, 2013 at 11:37 am |
      •  

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IhYLOa279EY

        October 3, 2013 at 11:38 am |
    • james

      they have since changed that rule and it is not a sin any more, so how many are in hell doing time on a meat rap?

      October 3, 2013 at 11:33 am |
      • Doc Vestibule

        Maybe the meat-damned just got sent to purgatory. That way, if someone became a vegetarian on their behalf they might've had a chance of being bumped up to Heaven....

        October 3, 2013 at 11:36 am |
        • ME II

          Nice! the Veggie-indulgence?

          October 3, 2013 at 11:48 am |
    • lol??

      Ye ol' traditions of men, however they are close enuff fer gubmint work..Signed up for the Mars trip yet??

      October 3, 2013 at 11:38 am |
      •  Doris

        Butthurt stll hasn't found his way out of his self-induced soap opera I see.

        October 3, 2013 at 11:43 am |
        • Jericho

          Gotta wonder if the tin-foil is wrapped a little bit too tightly around its head.

          October 3, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
  13. Doris

    Published on Mar 1, 2013

    Dan Dennett giving a talk at the Ecole Normale Supérieure during "Sperber Week," Paris, Dec, 2012

    [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oVdiGUQCi1M&w=640&h=360]

    October 3, 2013 at 11:14 am |
    • lol??

      Dorkis, not everyone has your taste in idols. You pullin' a Tom Cruise jumpin' on Opie's couch??

      October 3, 2013 at 11:34 am |
      •  Doris

        Why would I expect everyone to, butthurt old fool? Just because you seem to find it too uncomfortable to listen to reason doesn't mean others are that close-minded.

        October 3, 2013 at 11:47 am |
  14. sam stone

    Does anyone know whether there are any other groups of idiots as stupid as atheists?

    October 3, 2013 at 10:53 am |
    • Madtown

      Kardashians.

      October 3, 2013 at 10:58 am |
    • Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

      Christians who are too stupid to believably portray atheists?

      October 3, 2013 at 11:01 am |
    • doobzz

      People who steal names on the internet.

      October 3, 2013 at 11:04 am |
    • Is there

      anyone fool enough to believe the blog idiot who has no better argument than to use a myriad of handles to include stealing handles from others – all to make baseless "points"?

      October 3, 2013 at 11:04 am |
    • tallulah13

      It's fairly well established that trolls are as dumb as posts, and are more annoying yet less interesting than gnats.

      October 3, 2013 at 11:04 am |
    • K-switch

      "Does anyone know whether there are any other groups of idiots as stupid as atheists?"

      Things that came out of your mom's va gi na for $1000.

      October 3, 2013 at 11:18 am |
    • Ben

      Only people who think that atheists as a group are stupid. 😉

      October 3, 2013 at 11:24 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      What's a rhetorical question?

      October 3, 2013 at 11:27 am |
      • ME II

        "How fickle is woman." – Rhett Butler

        October 3, 2013 at 11:55 am |
    • sam stone

      Well, look at this....the troll of many names has taken my screen name again.

      How fvcking clever, faith

      Eat your 12 gauge

      October 3, 2013 at 12:22 pm |
  15. lol??

    Snip their necks or shelf em if bwain suckin' don't work.
    60,000,000 already through the great tribulation courtesy of Daddy Beast and Co.
    Vemen, obey da Beast and keep the socie servants happy and joyful.

    October 3, 2013 at 10:33 am |
    • doobzz

      Go put your teeth in, grandpa. You left them in the jar again.

      October 3, 2013 at 10:49 am |
    • Jericho

      You you know you couldn't give a damn once they're out of the birth canal, so who the heck do you think you're fooling with your "concern"?

      October 3, 2013 at 2:08 pm |
  16. Doc Vestibule

    God cursed humankind with death and disease (and painful childbirth for women) forevermore becuase we attained knowledge against His instructions.
    When we applied our knowledge adn worked together towards a common goal, God again cursed humans by spilitting us into tribes that can't communicate effectively.

    God wants Humans to be obsequious and ignorant.

    October 3, 2013 at 10:31 am |
    • Youtube - The Origin of Religion

      Yet we again can communicate, and by your standard have exceeded, for many years, the arrogance mentioned in the Bible. Where is God to make us "babble" once again? It's a myth.

      October 3, 2013 at 10:35 am |
    • lol??

      Docster, you sure are a QUACK. The race obtained the knowledge of good and evil with no power to act on it. Now be a gud little socie. Whatsa matter, you can't do it without lyin'??

      October 3, 2013 at 10:37 am |
      • Dyslexic doG

        fool

        October 3, 2013 at 10:40 am |
      • lol??

        Woof??

        October 3, 2013 at 10:45 am |
      • Doris

        The old fool messed up this one sentence badly – let me just fix it up:

        "The race obtained spam with no power to act on it

        October 3, 2013 at 10:59 am |
        • lol??

          Woof, woof??

          October 3, 2013 at 11:08 am |
        • lol??

          The pwogwessives are alwayz fixin' things. The secret password is, "The fix is in!"

          The republic is now the United Councils of Amerika.

          October 3, 2013 at 11:16 am |
        • Jericho

          Your padded cell awaits, lol??.

          October 3, 2013 at 12:26 pm |
    • Ben

      Doc
      This was knowledge of what was right, or wrong, good, or evil, right?

      What I can't get is how God could blame Adam and Eve for doing something wrong before they came to understand the difference between right and wrong that eating the fruit supposedly gave them? Sure, God told them not to eat it, but how would they have known that it was wrong to disobey God until they ate the fruit?

      October 3, 2013 at 11:29 am |
      • lol??

        God told em they would die. They didn't believe Him so it was a slap in the face that boomeranged. Don't touch that stove!

        Suppertime small talk:
        Mama citizen, "Joey touched the stove today. The paramedics took him to the ER"
        Daddy citizen, "Well,there goes the savings plan for the next 3 years and a year of college expenses. Cwooks!!"
        Mama, "Never seems to work out with those creepy Crips and greedy Bloods runnin' things."

        October 3, 2013 at 12:27 pm |
      • Ben

        lol
        The analogy is more like kids who were never taught to obey their parent prior to that parent slapping them for not obeying. If you define disobedience of God as some kind of "evil", then they couldn't have known that disobeying God was wrong until after they did it and got the ability to tell good from evil from the fruit.

        October 3, 2013 at 2:10 pm |
        • lol??

          That's quite an imagination but not anywhere close to the Father's. Truth is always stranger than fiction.

          Bbbbbbwwwwwaaaaaaaaaaaaaahahaha

          October 3, 2013 at 7:02 pm |
  17. Yaakov

    From the book 300 times 0 on Amazon

    The concept of Atonement is another point of disagreement between Christianity and Judaism. Christians believe that only the shed blood of the perfect Lamb of God [Jesus] is capable of washing away sin. Besides the logical problems with this concept, such as God creating a world with sin and having everyone go to Hell until after the death of Jesus some 4,000 years after creation, the Hebrew Bible never required human sacrifices for atonement. It is incomprehensible how one can believe that a loving and merciful God would create a world containing sin, yet would not give mankind a way to atone for it until a 4,000 year waiting period was completed for the death of his son. This is tantamount to creating an office building and not putting fire exits in the structure until an actual fire broke out, by then it would be too late. The means [repentance] was built into the very fabric of creation. The fire exits were built, before the office building opened for business. In Judaism, repentance has always been a necessary and accessible means of atonement since the very moment of creation.

    Judaism has always held belief in the biblical concept of Teshuvah, which means “return to God”. When someone is penitent and feels remorse and regret for the sins they have committed, they are immediately returned to favor with God and all their sins are forgiven. To a Jew, the most important question is not “how are we saved?” which is what Christians ask, but how can I best serve my God? As such, God gave the Jewish people 613 commandments to help us improve our lives and build a stronger connection to him. The more we strive to follow the commandments, the closer we come to understanding God and his role in our lives. Let us look at how the Torah instructs both Jews and Gentiles on the proper way to get saved.

    Isaiah 1:16 – Wash, cleanse yourselves, remove the evil of your deeds from before my eyes, cease to do evil. Learn to do good, seek justice, strengthen the robbed, perform justice for the orphan, and plead the case of the widow. Come now, let us debate, says the Lord. If your sins prove to be like crimson, they will become white as snow; if they prove to be as red as crimson dye, they shall become as white wool.

    God requires more than just faith; he also requires that we stop doing evil and perform acts of kindness. In fact, Isaiah 3:10 says “Tell the righteous it will be well with them, for they will enjoy the fruit of their deeds”. As Jews, we believe that what we do in this world, directly impacts us in the next which is why God is so concerned with how we live. A Gentile who lives a life of kindness and love for his fellow man is guaranteed a place in Heaven.

    Hosea 14:2 “Take words with you and return [Teshuvah] to the Lord. Say to him: Forgive all our sins and receive us graciously, that we may offer the bulls [sacrifices] of our lips”. Here, Hosea shows us that words enable us to return to the Lord If we ask him to forgive our sins, he will; this is the concept of repentance.

    Psalms 51:16 & 17 “You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise”. King David shows us that sacrifices are not needed or wanted; God requires only a broken heart. If one is truly repentant, God always forgives. We do not need anyone’s shed blood to atone for us.

    Hosea 6:6 “For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings”. Once again, no sacrifice needed or wanted. God just wants our acknowledgement.

    Jonah 2:1 & 9 “In my distress I called to the Lord, and he answered me. But I, with a song of thanksgiving, will sacrifice to you. What I have vowed I will make good. Salvation comes from the Lord”. Again we see that Jonah’s song of thanks to the Lord was considered a sacrifice. God heard his call and saved him.

    Psalms 50:14 “Sacrifice thank offerings to God, fulfill your vows to the Most High, and call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you will honor me”. God desires the “sacrifices” of prayer and thank offerings for salvation. He does not desire the blood of goats or of men.

    Psalms 40:6 “You take no delight in sacrifices or offerings. Now that you have made me listen, I understand you do not require burnt offerings or sin offerings.” It doesn’t get clearer than this.

    1 Samuel 15:22 “But Samuel replied: "Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the voice of the Lord? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams”. Here, Samuel clearly shows that “faith” is only part of the equation. Obeying the voice of the Lord is better than sacrifice.

    The Hebrew word for sacrifice is ‘Korban’ which is a derivative of the word ‘Karov’ meaning to ‘come close’. The concept of sacrifice is not that the blood itself atones for you; the concept of a sacrifice is that you feel remorse that it should have been you that is punished to die, but instead, an innocent animal is being killed because of you. The blood provides a way to help you atone and ‘come closer’ to God. The purpose of the sacrifice was that when you participate in slaughtering an animal, you commit yourself to try and sin-less because you don't want to take another creature’s life. The sacrificial process was designed to develop compassion, remorse and sensitivity in the offender; however, since the intentional sinner is unapologetic and lacks these necessary characteristics, the sacrifice cannot absolve him of guilt. This is why the Bible specifically states that the sacrifices were only for unintentional sins [Leviticus 4:2, 4:13, 4:22, 4:27, 5:15 and 5:18]. This is extremely logical because if someone sins intentionally, knowing full well that they would need to slaughter an animal, they really don’t care that another living creature must die and therefore the sacrifice itself will not expiate the sin.

    The only way to completely atone for intentional sin is through repentance and this is the concept of the sacrifice. Now, blood was the best way for atonement because it required the sinner to play an active role in the sacrificial process by giving up and slaughtering his own animal, however not everyone owned animals which is why God arranged alternate processes to give flour and money as atonement offerings. Exodus 30:15 states “The rich shall give no more, and the poor shall give no less than half a shekel, with which to give the offering to the Lord, to atone for your souls. You shall take the silver of the atonements from the children of Israel and use it for the work of the Tent of Meeting; it shall be a remembrance for the children of Israel before the Lord, to atone for your souls." The fact that the Bible says that the money was atonement for your souls, shows that blood alone was not needed. In addition to money, when people were unable to give an animal they were permitted to use fine flour for the sin expiation process. Leviticus 5:11 “But if he cannot afford two turtle doves or two young doves, then he shall bring as his sacrifice for his sin one tenth of an ephah [measurement] of fine flour for a sin offering. He shall not put oil over it, nor shall he place frankincense upon it, for it is a sin offering. However, the flour and money also only worked when repentance was part of the process. In fact, money is still used as an offering today in conjunction with other forms of repentance. God provided Yom Kippur, the Day

    of Atonement, [Leviticus 16:30] once a year to atone for our sins. We are to afflict our souls by fasting, which is abstinence from eating or drinking for a 25 hour period. The Torah says in the passage that the day itself atones for our sins, once again, only if we are penitent.

    Using this logic, it now becomes crystal clear why all the prophets above said God doesn't need sacrifices. It was because the whole purpose of the sacrifice was only to make you repent, if someone repents than that is truly what God wants. Active participation in the sacrificial process was the means through which the person was able to ‘come close’ to God in order to feel remorse. The concept that Jesus died for the sins of the world, and that the sinner had no part in the atonement process completely contradicts the entire point of the Korban Sacrifice. If however, we actively repent and feel remorse for our transgressions we come close to God through our own actions and do not require an animal sacrifice. Human sacrifice and specifically the sacrifice of the Messiah was never part of the Jewish atonement or salvation process. This concept was born from the integration of other cultures and beliefs into the Christian faith. This has never been part of the Jewish belief system and runs contrary to its very foundation.

    October 3, 2013 at 10:29 am |
    • tallulah13

      The whole concept of needing a scapegoat in order to be absolved of ones misdeeds strikes me as primitive and childish. If you can't or don't take responsibility for your own actions, if you need something or someone else to pay your penalty, how can you say that you've truly atoned? The scapegoat simply creates a dependency and a debt - two things that enable a power structure or an individual to control those who wish to make things right but don't want or understand how to achieve it by themselves.

      October 3, 2013 at 11:01 am |
      • lol??

        Life is dependent upon the Creator. No way around it no matter how the little gods squirm.

        Jhn 10:34 Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods?
        ......................................................................................................^^^^^^^^......................

        That's yer default position, when you get done playin' with yer idols.

        October 3, 2013 at 3:21 pm |
    • Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

      "When a Christian reaches for their book to reference a quote... you know they are about to lie their ass off..." ~LET

      October 3, 2013 at 11:05 am |
  18. Youtube - The Origin of Religion

    Before I knew anything, I believed the Bible stories because that's what I was taught. But then we become more experienced with just common decency, and see the major failing of the Bible – How can we, flawed humans, be more moral than God? I would never flood the entire earth, destroying all the people. What about all of the innocent animals? What did they do? According to the Bible, God had the power to kill the first born. Could he not have just done away with the wicked people instead of destroying everything on the planet? Why didn't God simply destroy the few people of Babel, I mean, he could flood the earth, kill the first born, right?

    And then comes science, which has forced religion to evolve quickly so that it can continue to live in view of how science shows its many falsehoods.

    October 3, 2013 at 9:52 am |
    • b

      I don’t feel that particular story is to be taken literally. After all, let’s face it, it didn’t happen regardless of whether or not it was to be taken literally.

      One dude I was debating with online said that Noah’s ark did actually happen four thousand years ago and said the worlds populate corresponds to this 100%. Apparently it’s silly to think 8 people on a boat 4K years ago can produce the 7 billion people around today.

      October 3, 2013 at 10:14 am |
      • Doc Vestibule

        I did the math for you a bit lower down on this page.
        TL:DR – Assuming a generous population growth rate of 3% (current global rate is actually around 1.5%) and a 0 infant mortality rate, the number of humans possible from The Flood until today is around 1.3 billion.

        October 3, 2013 at 10:24 am |
        • b

          Thanks. I’ll bring that up to him. May I ask what TL:DR stands for?

          October 3, 2013 at 10:45 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Too long : Didn't read

          October 3, 2013 at 10:51 am |
        • b

          I'm sorry, I did miss that.

          October 3, 2013 at 10:57 am |
      • Youtube - The Origin of Religion

        Well, it's not only that, it's also the entire basis of the New Testament that God chose to be reborn to a virgin, in order for us to kill him, so that he could forgive us, for a penalty that he himself placed upon us. That makes absolutely no sense.

        October 3, 2013 at 10:27 am |
      • Youtube - The Origin of Religion

        ... and beside the moralistic failure of Noah's Ark, just a little of which I have indicated above, there is the complete scientific failure. What else is left for it to fail?

        October 3, 2013 at 10:32 am |
    • Topher

      The Bible is literal, everything it says happened happened, Noah's Ark is true and the numbers absolutely support the population of today in the Biblical model.

      October 3, 2013 at 10:32 am |
      • Dyslexic doG

        LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL ...

        October 3, 2013 at 10:44 am |
      • Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

        You're a towel!

        October 3, 2013 at 10:49 am |
      • Doris

        "everything it says happened happened,"

        If you don't have any meat, then just adding more Hamburger Helper to Hamburger Helper just gives you Helper Helper.

        October 3, 2013 at 10:55 am |
        • Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

          LOL

          October 3, 2013 at 11:03 am |
      • Madtown

        The Bible is literal
        ----–
        It is literally a creation of the human mind.

        October 3, 2013 at 11:04 am |
      • Ben

        Topher
        Those are some pretty bold claims. If you do not have any evidence to back them up we are free to simply dismiss them as baseless, correct?

        October 3, 2013 at 11:21 am |
        • Topher

          Ben

          "Those are some pretty bold claims. If you do not have any evidence to back them up we are free to simply dismiss them as baseless, correct?"

          There's plenty of evidence. Of course whether you find them convincing enough is subjective. I'm a former atheist who, once I looked into things, found the evidence for God more compelling than that against and became a Christian. What you do with those things is up to you, however.

          October 3, 2013 at 11:29 am |
        • Madtown

          ...and became a Christian
          -------
          You can believe in God and not be a christian. You can believe in God, and not follow any particular religion at all. Religion is a creation of the human mind, not of God. "God" is not synonymous with "christianity".

          October 3, 2013 at 11:36 am |
        • Topher

          Madtown

          I don't like religion either.

          October 3, 2013 at 11:40 am |
        • Madtown

          I don't like religion either.
          ---
          Uh huh. Yeah, all your musings here are always completely detached from religious association. More comedy!

          October 3, 2013 at 11:42 am |
        • ME II

          @Topher,
          "There's plenty of evidence. Of course whether you find them convincing enough is subjective."

          Whether you consider it "evidence" at all is, apparently, subjective, for you anyway.

          "I'm a former atheist who, once I looked into things..."

          I'm a former Christian who, once I grew up, realized that a literal reading of the Bible made little sense logically.

          October 3, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
        • sam stone

          evidence that is subjective is pretty poor evidence, gopher

          you are a coward

          October 3, 2013 at 12:39 pm |
        • ME II

          @sam stone,
          Sorry, but name calling is a weak argument.

          October 3, 2013 at 12:45 pm |
        • Topher

          ME II

          "I'm a former Christian who, once I grew up, realized that a literal reading of the Bible made little sense logically."

          That might be. The decision is yours. You can't be forced to believe. Do you understand the distinction between being a "Christian" and being "born again"? Of course, I'd say you never were really a Christian if you reject Him now.

          October 3, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
        • ME II

          @Topher,
          "Of course, I'd say you never were really a Christian if you reject Him now."

          No true Scotsman, eh? Well, I'm not sure you were ever really an Atheist, if you "believe" now.

          ...meh

          October 3, 2013 at 1:45 pm |
        • Topher

          ME II

          "No true Scotsman, eh? Well, I'm not sure you were ever really an Atheist, if you "believe" now."

          No, that's not what I mean. It has to do with not being able to lose your salvation. So you couldn't have been saved then if you're not now. So it's entirely possible you considered yourself a Christian, went to church, read your Bible, etc., but you were never saved. And to call yourself a Christian gives the as.sumption you were saved. But if you were not, you were not a true Christian. I hope I explained that well.

          October 3, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
        • ME II

          @Topher,
          "So you couldn't have been saved then if you're not now. So it's entirely possible you considered yourself a Christian, went to church, read your Bible, etc., but you were never saved."

          So how can anyone call themselves a Christian if no one knows for certain if they are saved or not?

          October 3, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
        • Topher

          ME II

          "So how can anyone call themselves a Christian if no one knows for certain if they are saved or not?"

          The Bible says in order to be saved you must repent (that is, not just say you're sorry for sinning, but also agree with God and then turn away from those sins) and trust in Him. When you do that you'll be "born again." This means God will give you a new heart and new desires. You'll begin to love the things of God. And you'll HATE sin. Not that you won't ever sin again, but that when you do you'll feel terrible about it. When we are saved and born again, we really do become a different person.

          October 3, 2013 at 3:25 pm |
        • ME II

          @Topher,
          That's all fine, but what if someone thinks that they have all that and are "born again", but later stop believing?

          October 3, 2013 at 3:52 pm |
        • Topher

          ME II

          "That's all fine, but what if someone thinks that they have all that and are "born again", but later stop believing?"

          Then they never were born again. They may have been completely convinced they were, but let's say they get into something that's a sin. They are saying they'd rather have this sin in their life than God. It's pretty obvious then where their priorities lie. I'm sure that anyone who has an understanding of the Gospel and claims to be a true Christian but then can walk away could look back and find SOMETHING that would show them they never truly believed. They may have been caught up in enjoy the fellowship of church, or liked the music, liked group participation, something ... but they never truly knew the Gospel and never repented and trusted in Him. That's the problem with the modern gospel. Guys like Osteen who never preach Christ. It's "all about me." No, it's not about you, it's about Christ. We don't ask Him into our hearts, we don't become Christians to have a better, more successful life. But we love Him, because He first loved us.

          October 3, 2013 at 4:02 pm |
        • ME II

          @Topher,
          "Then they never were born again. They may have been completely convinced they were, but let's say they get into something that's a sin."

          So, if one is "completely convinced" that they are saved and yet may not be "really" saved, then once again, how can anyone truly know that they are saved?

          October 3, 2013 at 4:06 pm |
        • Topher

          ME II

          "So, if one is "completely convinced" that they are saved and yet may not be "really" saved, then once again, how can anyone truly know that they are saved?"

          I know I'm saved because I see the work of the Holy Spirit in my life. People who repent and trust Him can know they are saved. It's His promise to us. Like I said, its those that are fooled with things like the modern gospel who don't understand the Gospel or who may consider themselves a Christian because they go to a Christian church but have never repented ... those are the ones who fall away. I spent 10 years as a false convert because I was told that simple belief in Christ was all you needed. So I would have readily told you I was a Christian. But I never once picked up a Bible in all that time. I didn't care to. But I was convinced I would go to Heaven when I died. I wasn't saved. I didn't repent. I didn't trust Him. If I had died during that time I would have been given what I deserved and would be in Hell right now. Thankfully, someone finally told me what the Bible actually says. I weighed the evidences and found them compelling enough. And I knew God exists even though I denied Him for so long. But I finally came to the conclusion that the Bible has it right. Christ died for me because I couldn't pay for the sins I'd already committed. And so I repented and put my trust in the only one who could have paid that ransom. And my life is changed and I love Him.

          October 3, 2013 at 4:16 pm |
        • ME II

          @Topher,
          "Like I said, its those that are fooled with things like the modern gospel who don't understand the Gospel or who may consider themselves a Christian because they go to a Christian church but have never repented ... those are the ones who fall away."

          Are you so perfect in understanding as to *know* that you are not "fooled" even now?
          Is your knowledge of the Bible/Gospel/etc so utterly *complete* that you can never be wrong about some crucial aspect?
          Surely one's pride would not blind one against misunderstanding.

          October 3, 2013 at 4:31 pm |
        • Topher

          ME II

          "Are you so perfect in understanding as to *know* that you are not "fooled" even now?"

          I would say I'm not perfect in anything. But I know what the Bible says now. And I see its promises fulfilled in me. So no, I'm not fooled now. There is nothing anyone could offer me in order to reject what God has already given me.

          "Is your knowledge of the Bible/Gospel/etc so utterly *complete* that you can never be wrong about some crucial aspect?"

          I am still constantly learning, that's why I keep reading my Bible. I'm not sure anyone could ever stop learning from it. But I'm doctrinally sound on not only salvation issues, but also on what we would call the essentials. That sounds a bit like boasting to me, and I don't like that, but I'm just trying to answer your question.

          "Surely one's pride would not blind one against misunderstanding."

          Pride is a major issue. It keeps many men from repenting. Bowing the knee to Him takes being humble. And sometimes when you've got people who think they are smarter than everyone else, they won't do it. It was one of my issues.

          October 3, 2013 at 4:39 pm |
        • sam stone

          ME II: I agree. I am not trying to win an argument with gopher. I used to try, but I have seen his schtick enough to know that he is not here to discuss anything. Discussion involves give and take. Gopher does not have that in him. Gopher is here to preach. The name calling is my consistent "fvck you" to that cowardly punk

          October 3, 2013 at 4:48 pm |
        • ME II

          @Topher,
          "So no, I'm not fooled now. There is nothing anyone could offer me in order to reject what God has already given me."

          I'm almost certain that many "fallen" have said nearly the exact same thing.

          "Pride is a major issue. It keeps many men from repenting. Bowing the knee to Him takes being humble. And sometimes when you've got people who think they are smarter than everyone else, they won't do it. It was one of my issues."

          Pride has a way of hiding ones own faults, whether they lead one away from noble goals... or toward them.

          October 3, 2013 at 4:58 pm |
      • OKfine

        Babel on Topher. The only thing you have for proof are creationist Christian apologists lies and the most contradicted book ever written by man the bible.

        October 3, 2013 at 11:30 am |
        • Topher

          There are NO contradictions. But apparently you think there are. Pick one and let's talk about it. But one at a time, please.

          October 3, 2013 at 11:38 am |
        • Athy

          Topher, you still haven't explained why vertebrates (many of whom live in the water) have reversed retinas. The ones that live in water don't need protection from radiation, as you so stupidly claimed as the reason for reversed retinas. Take another shot at it so we can all get a laugh.

          October 3, 2013 at 11:43 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Who visited Christ's empty tomb? How many people were there again?
          Was it a man or an angel who said that Christ had risen?

          October 3, 2013 at 11:49 am |
        • Topher

          Athy

          I did and you know it. You're just one of those who want to argue every last thing I say. If I said Obama is president of the United States, you'd argue he isn't. More "atheist" dishonesty.

          October 3, 2013 at 11:49 am |
        • Topher

          Doc Vestibule

          "Who visited Christ's empty tomb? How many people were there again?"

          There were many who visited. The women were there first, then went to tell the apostles. Peter and John then ran there to see for themselves.

          "Was it a man or an angel who said that Christ had risen?"

          Angel.

          October 3, 2013 at 11:51 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @Topher
          I mean, specifically – by name – who made the discovery?

          October 3, 2013 at 11:53 am |
        • OKfine

          Topher
          God loves all his creations equally. Yet god has no trouble slaughtering the enemies of his chosen people but not just the enemies but the first born innocent children of them. A few bad as,ses in Sodom pi$s off god but does he just wipe out the sinners no but all the innocent with the guilty same thing with the flood. An analogy would be that one of your congregation is sentenced to death for murder but the whole church is put to death for the criminals actions, that is your god's practice of justice. Before you get on your high horse it is one theme with different examples, so do not cop out saying it is more than one, you use almost any excuse not to answer.

          October 3, 2013 at 11:54 am |
        • Athy

          Yeah, Topher. You "explained" it alright. And the funny thing about it is you actually believe it. But it makes no sense. Many vertebrates live in water and don't need protection.

          October 3, 2013 at 11:55 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          How many angels?
          Were said angel(s) inside or outside the tomb?
          Were they sitting or standing?

          Matthew – 1 angel sitting outside
          Mark – 1 "young man" sitting inside
          Luke – 2 men standing inside
          John – Nobody at all on the first visit – then later, 2 angels sitting inside

          October 3, 2013 at 12:00 pm |
        • Topher

          OKfine

          "God loves all his creations equally."

          Yes and no. If you are saved, you are a "child of God." If you're not, you're a "child of wrath." Does He still love you in that state? Yes. But will He give you up to yourself and give you the punishment you deserve? Oh, yes.

          "Yet god has no trouble slaughtering the enemies of his chosen people but not just the enemies but the first born innocent children of them. A few bad as,ses in Sodom pi$s off god but does he just wipe out the sinners no but all the innocent with the guilty same thing with the flood."

          One, the Bible says there are NONE who are good. Second, as Creator of them all, He decides who lives and who dies. And since everyone dies, He'll decide when that is for you and me, too.

          "An analogy would be that one of your congregation is sentenced to death for murder but the whole church is put to death for the criminals actions, that is your god's practice of justice. Before you get on your high horse it is one theme with different examples, so do not cop out saying it is more than one, you use almost any excuse not to answer."

          Do you understand what a "federal head" is?

          October 3, 2013 at 12:01 pm |
        • Madtown

          One, the Bible says there are NONE who are good
          ------
          Why are you quoting from the bible? You said above that you don't like religion.

          October 3, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
        • OKfine

          Topher In that case I would put your god in the same class as Hitler, Stalin. or Assad in the present, why does your loving god not stop the slaughter. By federal head do you mean that Adam as father passed on sin to all his off spring, that is the type of idiocy only a christian could believe.

          October 3, 2013 at 12:22 pm |
        • Topher

          Madtown

          "Why are you quoting from the bible? You said above that you don't like religion."

          True. I don't like religion. Religion is man having to do things in order to go to Heaven. Christianity, however, says you can't do anything to go to Heaven. The work has already been done for you.

          October 3, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
        • Topher

          OKfine

          "Topher In that case I would put your god in the same class as Hitler, Stalin. or Assad in the present, why does your loving god not stop the slaughter."

          He could. And I'd suggest that sometimes He does, according to His will. But because we have free will, and because He's a just judge, He demonstrates His love through His actions. You say, "Why doesn't God kill all the wrongdoers right away?" Well, wouldn't He also then have to kill you right away? Personally, I'd be one of the first to go. I've broken every commandment. But God shows us grace by allowing us to live for a time so that we might coming to repent and trust in Him.

          "By federal head do you mean that Adam as father passed on sin to all his off spring, that is the type of idiocy only a christian could believe."

          Yes, but it's not only Christians who hold to it. We see it in the OT when God commands an entire family to be destroyed because of one's actions. And we see it today when we invade a country and kill its people because of the actions of their leader. Groups are held accountable for the one they follow.

          October 3, 2013 at 1:08 pm |
        • OKfine

          Topher
          He your mythical god could not kill me, he doesn't exist and the commandments you claim to have broken apply to me only as a part of the civil law. I am without sin and so are millions of those innocents that the stories of your god had slaughtered.

          October 3, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
        • Topher

          OKfine

          " ... he doesn't exist ..."

          "I am without sin and so are millions of those innocents that the stories of your god had slaughtered."

          So wait, either He doesn't exist and thus you have nothing to complain about as far as God having slaughtered them, or He DOES exist, in which you'd better repent and trust in Him. So which is it?

          October 3, 2013 at 1:36 pm |
        • OKfine

          Topher your reading comprehension is going down hill or you are being deliberately obtuse. I say your god does not exist and that the STORIES (read as myths) of god that the likes of you try to ram down others throats are BS not true. Grow up, you are not a child, why think like one.

          October 3, 2013 at 1:55 pm |
        • Topher

          Then what are you complaining about?!

          October 3, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
        • OKfine

          Topher. If you do come back please tell me in which war we participated in that the women and children were slaughtered in the fashion that the stories in the bible indicate. There have been some pretty ugly isolated incidents but by and large collateral damage is at a minimum. Not so the stories of your loving god, wipe out the whole lot infants, children, women and men, such brutality from a myth that is supposed to be love personified. Ridiculous story.

          October 3, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
        • OKfine

          Topher. I am complaining about you and you ilk being able to convince anyone, especially the young being brainwashed into the nonsense you believe and your ability to teach this BS in public schools. The sooner the Tophers of the world have zero influence on others the better off we will all be.

          October 3, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
        • Topher

          OKfine

          "I am complaining about you and you ilk being able to convince anyone, especially the young being brainwashed into the nonsense you believe and your ability to teach this BS in public schools."

          Who teaches the Bible in public schools? None around here. And I'm playing the world's smallest violin for you, dude, seeing as you want the great lie of evolution taught in schools as fact.

          "The sooner the Tophers of the world have zero influence on others the better off we will all be."

          I don't have any influence. Christians have less and less. Have you paid attention to our country lately? Reject it all if you will. That's your choice. But you will still have no excuse on Judgment Day.

          October 3, 2013 at 4:07 pm |
        • OKfine

          Your threat of judgement day shows what an infantile mind you have, the bogey man, how old area you mentally?

          October 3, 2013 at 4:12 pm |
        • ME II

          @Topher,
          "the great lie of evolution "

          The is NO lie, not any systemic lie anyway, but apparently you think there are. Pick one and let's talk about it.

          October 3, 2013 at 4:21 pm |
        • Topher

          OKfine

          "Your threat of judgement day shows what an infantile mind you have, the bogey man, how old area you mentally?"

          You can call it a threat if you want, but would you refer to the police that way? That they threaten you with prison? Only if you're a lawbreaker. If you're on the right side of the law you understand the police are the good guys. It shows where your heart is. Claiming to have no sin isn't fooling anyone.

          And you're the one having a fit about how unjust God is even though you claim to not believe in Him. The Bible says in Psalm 14:1 "The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good."

          October 3, 2013 at 4:22 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @Topher
          The only allies the Creationist nutbars have in their fight to have mythology taught alongside fact in science classrooms are the Raelians.
          Just remember that if the fight is one, it won't only be the Genesis account added as an "alternative" theory, it'll also be the Raelian "theory" that aliens seeded the universe with the building blocks of life.
          That may well give rise to compatiblist theories, like God is really an Alien.

          "What does God need with a starship?"
          – James Kirk

          October 3, 2013 at 4:23 pm |
        • OKfine

          Topher. I have absolutely no fear of the police, actually have a few cop friends, the difference being that the cops do not see me as a fallen person or sinner just because I exist, like the stories of your vindictive god. I do not think your god ever existed much as I know that Harry Potter nrver existed out side of the story book. Your god maybe real in your limited mind but he is just a fictional character in mine. I however reserve my right to call a BS story a BS story when I hear or read one. Try scaring me again, all hallows day is coming up right soon.

          October 3, 2013 at 4:38 pm |
        • Topher

          Doc Vestibule

          "The only allies the Creationist nutbars have in their fight to have mythology taught alongside fact in science classrooms are the Raelians."

          The only "creationist" movement I know of trying to get it taught in schools is the intelligent design movement. I am in no way in agreement with them. And besides, I don't want Creation taught in schools. I just wish they weren't also teaching evolution.

          October 3, 2013 at 4:42 pm |
        • OKfine

          Doc
          You forget Bobby Henderson creating the Flying Spaghetti Monster to make a mockery of teaching intelligent design in schools, only slightly off topic.

          October 3, 2013 at 4:57 pm |
      • HotAirAce

        Topher has never won an argument in here but let's humor him and see how long he can prattle on for before once again he shows us he is just another mindless Babble Humper.

        October 3, 2013 at 11:44 am |
        • JWT

          At least now and then the comedy value is high.

          October 3, 2013 at 12:39 pm |
        • sam stone

          Doesn't gopher pretty much show that immediately?

          October 3, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
      • sam stone

        And, gopher, you remain a snivelling little coward, too afraid to take the punishment you feel you deserve, so you hide behind the supposed sacrifice of the sainted pincushion

        October 3, 2013 at 12:36 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17
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.