October 9th, 2013
02:27 PM ET

Creationists taunt atheists in latest billboard war

By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor
[twitter-follow screen_name='EricCNNBelief']

(CNN)– A new video billboard in New York's Times Square has a message from creationists, "To all of our atheist friends: Thank God you're wrong."

The video advertisement at 42nd Street and Eighth Avenue in Manhattan is one of several billboards going up this week in New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles, paid for by Answers in Genesis.

Answers in Genesis is best known as the multimillion-dollar Christian ministry behind the Creation Museum outside Cincinnati.

The museum presents the case for Young Earth creationism, following what it says is a literal interpretation of the book of Genesis, which says the Earth was created by God in six days less than 10,000 years ago.

Ken Ham, president of Answers in Genesis, said the idea for the advertisements came from an atheist billboard in Times Square at Christmas.

During the holidays, the American Atheists put up a billboard with images of Santa Claus and Jesus that read: "Keep the Merry, dump the myth."

“The Bible says to contend for the faith,” Ham said. “We thought we should come up with something that would make a statement in the culture, a bold statement, and direct them to our website.

"We're not against them personally. We're not trying to attack them personally, but we do believe they're wrong," he said.

"From an atheist's perspective, they believe when they die, they cease to exist. And we say 'no, you're not going to cease to exist; you're going to spend eternity with God or without God. And if you're an atheist, you're going to be spending it without God.' "

Dave Silverman, president of the American Atheists, said he felt sad for creationists when he saw the billboards.

"They refuse to look at the real world. They refuse to look at the evidence we have, and they offer none," Silverman said. "They might as well be saying, 'Thank Zeus you're wrong' or 'Thank Thor you're wrong.' "

Silverman said he welcomed another competitor to marketplace, noting that after atheists bought a billboard two years ago in Times Square that read "You KNOW it's a myth," the Catholic League purchased competing space at the entrance to the Lincoln Tunnel for a sign that read "You KNOW it's true."

"I would suggest, if they're actually trying to attract atheists, they should talk about proof and reason to believe in their god, not just some pithy play on words," Silverman said.

Ham says part of the goal of the campaign is to draw people to the website for Answers in Genesis, where he offers a lengthy post on his beliefs for the proof of God.

Ham insists that this campaign is in keeping with their overall mission. "We're a biblical authority ministry. We're really on about the Bible and the Gospel. Now, we do have a specialty in the area of the creation account and Genesis because that's where we say God's word has come under attack."

Ham said Answers in Genesis made the decision to split its marketing budget for the ministry between a regional campaign for the museum and this billboard campaign, rather than a national campaign.

IRS filings for the ministry in recent years have shown a yearly operating budget of more than $25 million. Ham said the marketing budget is about 2% of that, about $500,000 a year. Though they are waiting for all the bills to come due for this campaign, he said he expected it to cost between $150,000 and $200,000.

Silverman noted that his billboards were not video and cost approximately $25,000 last year.  He said another campaign was in the works for this year.

"They're throwing down the gauntlet, and we're picking it up," Silverman said, adding that his group would "slap them in the face" with it.

Ham said that despite criticism from other Christians for being negative and the usual criticisms from secularists he received on his social media accounts, the advertisements have been a success.

"We wanted people talking about them, and we wanted discussion about this. We wanted people thinking about God," Ham said.

The Creation Museum and the theory of Young Earth creationism are widely reviled by the broader science community.

In a YouTube video posted last year titled "Creationism Is Not Appropriate For Children," Bill Nye the Science Guy slammed creationism, imploring parents not to teach it to their children. "We need scientifically literate voters and taxpayers for the future," he said. "We need engineers that can build stuff and solve problems."

The museum responded with its own video. 

For the past 30 years, Gallup Inc. has been tracking American opinions about creationism.

In June 2012, Gallup's latest findings showed that 46% of Americans believed in creationism, 32% believed in evolution guided by God, and 15% believed in atheistic evolution.

For as long as Gallup has conducted the survey, creationism has remained far and away the most popular answer, with 40% to 47% of Americans surveyed saying they believed that God created humans in their present form at one point within the past 10,000 years.

The Creation Museum said it recently welcomed its 2 millionth visitor since its opening in 2007.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • Christianity • Creationism • New York • Science

soundoff (8,748 Responses)
  1. Anders

    What frustrates me in this type of debate is what I see as a deliberate choice of "being" stupid. I have religious colleagues and they are not stupid(unintelligent ect). But in one area of there lives they activly choose to be ignorant. Leaving all reason and logic at the door.

    Sometimes they try to merge our very scientific line of work with their "beliefs" but that just ends in distorting known facts and bending truths.

    Im not sure who said it but: I respect them to much to respect their religious beliefs.

    October 10, 2013 at 12:10 pm |
    • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

      Religion has continuously evolved in order to survive. Science is overwhelming, and the growth of the "nones" is undeniable proof of a gradual movement away from the Christian myth.

      October 10, 2013 at 12:40 pm |
  2. Ogre

    I dunno, arguing about religion is just ridiculous. Those who argue that God absolutely must exist based on Biblical (or Koranic, or Talmudic) evidence are JUST as wrong in their supposition as the Atheists who claim God doesn't' exist because they've not been able to distill him/her/it in a test-tube.

    And this sort of jibe is just childish and as far as I'm concerned violates the spirit of what Christ is about.

    October 10, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
  3. mk

    "...We're not against them personally."

    "...And if you're an atheist, you're going to be spending it without God."

    As long as creationists claim that atheists will spend eternity in a fiery hell for not believing in an (all-loving?) god no matter how they live their lives, they ARE against them. Personally.

    October 10, 2013 at 12:00 pm |
  4. Jesus_Rules

    These people really believe that God will damn a fetus to hell for trillions upon trillions of years and won't be able to use his power to do anything about it. And that Obama, if you asked, would NEVER send a fetus to hell for trillions of years. They are suggesting that Obama is more merciful than the Lord, their savior.

    October 10, 2013 at 11:58 am |
    • Ted

      Hey, stupid rules, it's pretty easy to be more merciful than something that doesn't exist.

      October 10, 2013 at 12:18 pm |
  5. Till


    October 10, 2013 at 11:51 am |
    • Thumb-body

      Funny, but profound!

      October 10, 2013 at 11:56 am |
    • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

      Funny, although submerged entirely in myth and not fact, still ... funny.

      October 10, 2013 at 11:57 am |
    • Jesus_Rules

      Usually when people say they don't believe in God, they mean they don't believe in the Christian God who became a man and performed cool tricks to impress people in his vicinity, but didn't do enough to Show Off, like appear in the dream of every person on earth.

      October 10, 2013 at 12:04 pm |
      • Ted

        More to it than that, but sure, the whole Jeebus sacrifice thing is unnecessary out of the gate, and just stupid.

        October 10, 2013 at 12:20 pm |
        • Alias


          October 10, 2013 at 1:01 pm |
  6. Guest


    October 10, 2013 at 11:49 am |
  7. Glenn

    "They refuse to look at the real world. They refuse to look at the evidence we have, and they offer none," Silverman said. "They might as well be saying, 'Thank Zeus you're wrong' or 'Thank Thor you're wrong.' "

    Sheesh, the athiests have jack for evidence. I read God Isn't Great and the God Delusion and they offered no evidence to support their 'belief', only glib put downs of those who do. They basically said, look at the silly things this or that Christian has said (many Christians do say silly things) so therefore god is not great and doesn't exist.

    As a Christian, I don't believe the earth is younger than 10,000 years old and I do believe in evolution however athiests which isn't very difficult how athiests can no more objectively proof that God does not exist than Christians can objectively proof God does exist.

    Athiests can be as intellectually dishonest as any Christian and just as dogmatic and perhaps more so. I find athiests to be a very closed minded lot.

    That said, the book The Real Case for Christ was far more academically rigorous and intellectually honest than anything I've seen from athiest camp.

    October 10, 2013 at 11:40 am |
    • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

      At least we are willing to change our minds if believers will just present the evidence. In contrast, believers just don't want to believe the truth given all of the facts provided by science.

      October 10, 2013 at 12:00 pm |
      • Glenn

        Evidence eh. You mean the kind of 'objective' evidence that proves the that the big bang really happened or perhaps formed from an older universe (can't remember what that theory is called)? Or that various quantum theories aren't just based on faith and hope but objective evidence?

        And what facts does science provide that disproves the existence of God?

        The entire universe may be a creation of God and therefore all the scientific endeavor that goes on within it. The existence of God does not invalidate physics, quantum theory or evolution.

        October 10, 2013 at 12:57 pm |
        • HotAirAce

          Atheists would thoroughly enjoy seeing the case for any god made using the scientific method or the justice system's rules of evidence. Was The Real Case For Jesus presented as such? Did it appear in a scholarly peer-reviewed journal? Did independent reviewers agree with the conclusions? Were tests proposed and conducted, and repeated by others with the same results? Can you point to a single scientific article published in a highly regarded scientific journal (The Discovery Inst!tute doesn't count) that successfully concludes with "some god did it"? Real science, including theories related to evolution, are routinely subjected to rigorous independent review and replication, a standard that religion has never risen to.

          October 10, 2013 at 1:18 pm |
        • HotAirAce

          In general, science does not set out to prove or disprove the existence of any god. Unfortunately for believers, a side effect of increased knowledge gained via science is that there is less opportunity for a god to hide. Science rarely claims absolute certainty and knowledge. Scientists know that regardless of what is currently known, there is much more to learn, that current knowledge and theories can be improved, and yes, some may be discarded along the way. Compare this to religion's rigid beliefs.

          October 10, 2013 at 1:25 pm |
        • Glenn

          You guys are so two faced in this debate. Was the God Delusion or God is Not Great peer reviewed? No but that never seems to matter to you guys.

          All I know is The Real Case for Christ presented a great deal of supporting evidence and background to back his thesis; far more than was presented in God Delusion or God is Not Great. Those two books mostly presented glib attacks and Hitchens was a master when it came to debate.


          'Science rarely claims absolute certainty and knowledge. '

          'Scientists know that regardless of what is currently known, there is much more to learn, that current knowledge and theories can be improved, and yes, some may be discarded along the way. Compare this to religion's rigid beliefs.'

          I could say all the things about serious and mature theologians.

          I can also find scientists who claim far too much certainty and who hold very rigid beliefs. Just look at some of belief controversies witnessed in science over the decades when some scientist came along and overturned the orthodoxy.

          I also find most athiests universally closed minded and rigid. You can find a lot of Christian who are the same but not all.

          October 10, 2013 at 2:28 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Glenn, I think atheists have examined the bible and religion and found it wanting in terms of reason and logic. I don't see that as closed-minded – there is no evidence for a god and as our scientific knowledge increases the likelihood of a god decreases. You accept science that brings you DNA identification, GPS, internet, prescription drugs, satellite TV, space travel, etc. and yet science using the same methodology is rejected when it contradicts the imaginings of, in your case, Bronze Age sheepherders from the Middle East. And in some cases it is the same science!

          October 10, 2013 at 4:04 pm |
        • HotAirAce

          Even though I agree with books like The God Delusion and God Is Not Great, they are not, and have never been pretended to be, science books. They are opinion – well thought and correct in my opinion, but opinion nonetheless.

          There are many, many proper scientific articles, published in real scientific journals, about evolution. If believers want to debunk evolution or establish the true facts of their so far unproven beliefs, they're going to have to use the scientific method, rules of evidence and/or some other structured and accepted method of presenting hypothesis, evidence, conclusions and verification. Until then, they are just piling more opinion, and lies in my opinion, on top of centuries of lies and opinions.

          October 12, 2013 at 10:50 am |
    • Maxwell's Demon

      The burden of proof is on those who claim there is a god.

      October 10, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
      • Glenn

        How convenient for you.

        October 10, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
        • Real Deal


          And how inconvenient for you...

          October 10, 2013 at 1:02 pm |
        • Jeff Williams

          Glenn, atheists are not obligated to disprove anything that theists have failed to prove in the first place.

          October 12, 2013 at 9:06 am |
        • Rational Thinker

          That type of argument always irks me as well, it definitely shows some diminished logic in the religious creationist. Maybe scientists should also try to prove that there is no Tooth Fairy, Easter Bunny, Boogey Man or green, flying, poisonous, fire breathing unicorns.

          October 12, 2013 at 10:21 am |
    • Maxwell's Demon

      And if you think The Real Case for Christ was academically rigorous or intellectually honest, I find it extremely likely you consider "academically rigorous" and "intellectually honest" to mean "agrees with me."

      October 10, 2013 at 12:03 pm |
    • mk

      "I find athiests to be a very closed minded lot."

      You think living your life based on a single book that you're not close-minded?

      Atheists have NO specific list of beliefs, book, list of rules, leaders who tell them what to think, churches, or anything else to signify that that they are an atheist other than the fact that they don't believe in god(s). Other than that, anything goes.

      October 10, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
      • Glenn

        I've read lots of books including Dawkin's and Hitchen's. I can read both sides with an open mind however I found Dawkin's and Hitchen's books very disappointing and I'd always been a fan of Hitchen's writing.

        October 10, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
      • Rational Thinker

        @mk says atheists have no "leaders who tell them what to think, churches,..."

        I hate to say this but I agree with a creationist. Yes, we do not depend upon a mass group of church goers suffering from a delusional existence finding strength in large numbers of others. Likewise, we do not need leaders to tell us what to think. You have very well proven one or our core values.

        We think for ourselves and realize what is real and what is fiction, based upon OUR brain processing power, NOT what others tell us. I myself do have beliefs based upon life and society that I appreciate. I am very good to others, I am not a criminal and do not break any (well.. many) laws. I love all life around me, including animals, trees, plants, flowers. I marvel at the wonders of the universe, molecular science and theoretical physics. I wish we could discover life in other solar systems, I feel that it exists.

        I like to read about the thoughts of authors such as Einstein, Tesla, Michio Kaku, Dalai Lama, Alan Turing, Steve Jobs and others.

        You sir are the one that is close minded.

        October 12, 2013 at 10:37 am |
    • Sean

      You don't seem to understand the burden of proof. You should look into that.

      Also, you might want to research this particular wingnut before you lump yourself in with him. The Creation Museum depicts animatronic dinosaurs living in unity with humans, less than 6000 years ago, and a "full scale" copy of the ark supposedly built by a 600 year old man that carried two of every air breathing animal on the planet (except the kangaroos, wallabys, penguins or polar bears) for three months without a dump station or 7-11 to pick up new supplies (because obviously they would need a LOT of ding dongs and twinkies to feed that many animals for that long).

      October 10, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
      • Glenn

        I do not believe in creation theory as I said in my post or this particular group. I believe in evolution and I'm a Christian and the two are not incompatible.

        I did think the advertisement was clever however.

        October 10, 2013 at 1:03 pm |
        • Joey

          Without a literal Adam and Eve to commit original sin there is no need for the whole Jesus sacrifice and thus no reason to believe any of the Bible.

          October 10, 2013 at 1:55 pm |
    • Woody

      "......athiests can no more objectively proof that God does not exist than Christians can objectively proof God does exist."
      – Glenn

      There was no such person as an atheist before the first person claimed there was such a thing as a god. The burden of proof, as always, is the responsibility of the claimant. As has been written in this blog, many times, you can't prove a negative, nor should you have to try.

      October 10, 2013 at 12:44 pm |
  8. Benton Collins

    My view of reality and God: Throughout the universe and out to infinity, is a quantum field. Infinity applies simple pressure in the form of lines of force to an infinite number of points within this field and causes sub micro vibrations (likely the Higgs Boson) when two nearly directly opposing lines of force coming in from infinity meet. When these vibrations get large enough, they form vibrational toroidal loops or "particles" also called "matter". When two or more of these "particles" are close enough to each other, they each block a tiny line of force that continues to press in from infinity. This blocking of the force by each "particle" creates a line of lower pressure between the two "particles", thus creating an imbalance of pressure. This imbalance of pressure causes them to be pushed closer together. This effect is called "gravity". If enough "particles" are also nearby, a snowballing effect is created and can grow at near instantaneous speed and volume. This is what is known as the "Big Bang". (Really should be called the Big Pile Up) This quantum field that is fed by the pressure of infinity, is in constant eternal flow and keeps all atomic "particles" in spin and vibration. This field is also the foundation of consciousness and from this field of consciousness, thoughts (mental energy) arise that causes a disturbance in this field and is what's responsible for the vibration to grow (feedback) and become matter in the first place. At it's base, these "thoughts" are closer involuntary burps or farts than anything we would normally associate with an idea filled "thought." But through time and following natural fractal geometric paths and patterns, these thoughts, which have now become basic matter (like seeds) grow, learn, evolve and create. (simplified version) The universe is a purely mental living system. The physicality you're experiencing now is an intricate illusion created by consciousness for consciousness to experience. You are riding the leading edge of this highly evolved process of thought. You are a separate fractal part of a universal mind. God is essentially a never ending process of consciousness that you are a product of and that your mind connects into. This is God.

    October 10, 2013 at 11:19 am |
    • Ed

      No, that is not a god. It is missing an intent. It is just a description of what reality might be, according to you.

      God, at least as described by Christians, obviously does not exist, but that is a separate issue.

      October 10, 2013 at 11:26 am |
      • Benton Collins

        Intent, choice and will develops and DOES become A MAIN DRIVING FORCE as we or an element of God grows. This is similar to the amount of choice, intent and will an unborn child has as it develops, which is practically none. It is only after it reaches a certain point in it's development, that it's own intent, will and choice is expressed. The God of the Christian Bible is also sated as the "son" (or product) of God. This "son" Is the pinnacle of this grow, evolve, choose process, which for now at least, finds it's highest expression in design of the human body. It's all about expanding consciousness, to expand awareness of our surroundings and others. From single cells to well organized cell collectives, that all serve a larger consciousness.

        October 10, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
        • Seven

          Sounds like The Borg hive!

          October 10, 2013 at 1:11 pm |
    • Alias

      If your intention was to give christians ammo to shoot at the atheists, you succeeded.

      October 10, 2013 at 11:30 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Through the quantum fluctuations of chronometric tachyon fields, one can surmise that at its core, the Universe is composed of Heinsenberg pulse fields interacting on the quantum level. Of course, these gravimetric oscillations can only be observed indirectly, but by noting their influence on the sub-atomic quantum flanging, the ferfanational matrices of gestalt knoncleotides proves, beyond a doubt, that the entire fabric of reality as we perceive it is nothing more than the passing whimsy of quantum midichlorians. Quantum quantum quantum. Quantum.
      Buy my new book.

      – Deepak Chopra

      October 10, 2013 at 11:36 am |
      • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

        I just had a religious experience – I was going to write exactly the same thing! It's a miracle!

        October 10, 2013 at 11:47 am |
      • Benton Collins

        It's OK if you don't follow or understand what I said. But what you wrote is complete gibberish.

        October 10, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          What I wrote is perfectly cromulent.

          October 10, 2013 at 1:45 pm |
      • My Dog is a jealous Dog

        Thanks – Deepak Chopra is one of my favorite comedians!

        October 12, 2013 at 10:53 am |
      • HotAirAce

        Yahoo for Dr. Woo Woo!

        October 12, 2013 at 10:57 am |
      • My Dog is a jealous Dog

        Reminds me of Lionly Lamb .... atomic cosmologies for everyone!

        October 12, 2013 at 11:01 am |
    • Richard Cranium

      That is one definition of god...ask every single person on the planet and you will get a different definition. Thanks for sharing.

      October 10, 2013 at 11:39 am |
      • Benton Collins

        Yes, nearly everyone has their own idea of what or who God is. From a turtle to a robed figure sitting on a throne to nothing at all. My view (part of which is not entirely new) hopes to offer something much closer to the actual truth. My main point being that God is not something separate from us or our world, that is "out there" making living beings and sending them along their way. It is rather an embedded process that all starts with consciousness and the evolution of consciousness as it fights to survive, pushing, growing, creating and making choices relevant to it's level and place along it's evolutionary path. The intent filled, judgmental God of the Bible is a thinking (very similar to if not exactly like us) being or beings ("let US make man in OUR image") which are at a very advanced evolutionary stage in consciousness that has gone through the whole process which ends with the complete and total knowledge of the workings of the universe and his or her place in it (enlightenment).

        Fast forward the human a million years from now (maybe even much sooner) and this all may begin to make sense. Peace.

        October 11, 2013 at 1:49 am |
    • HotAirAce

      Ok, let's assume for a minute you are on to something. How would you go about proving it? What experiments and measurements would you conduct? What results would you expect? How would you and others verify your results?

      Without the above, you have just another unfounded bunch of mumbo-jumbo.

      October 12, 2013 at 11:04 am |
      • bostontola

        I got a kick out of it so it had infinitesimal value.

        October 12, 2013 at 11:08 am |
        • Benton Collins

          : )

          October 13, 2013 at 9:49 am |
      • Benton Collins

        With time and advancements in technology, experiments may be able to verify my proposal. More than likely it will not be by it's direct observation, but by observing it's effect on that which can be observed. For instance, doubly-charged Higgs Bosons cannot be directly observed by a detector, but through the subsequent effect it's presence has on particles that can be observed directly. For now, my theory or proposal can only be tested in the mind. Einstein was famous for his thought experiments who's purpose was to lead the reader to a better understanding of his theories, but offered no tangible proof as such (within the thought experiments). Nikola Tesla could see his designs actually running in his mind before he brought them to life with wire, wood and metal. So those looking for evidence now that can be seen on a display that is generated by a black box may be disappointed. But those that can "see" the process running in their minds like Tesla or Einstein may find this close enough for now until the advancements come that can paint the "proof" into a tighter corner.

        October 13, 2013 at 9:57 am |
  9. ptw

    This must be the "American Exceptionalism" thing I keep hearing about.

    Maybe once upon a time it meant something good. But now...

    October 10, 2013 at 11:07 am |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      American Exceptionalism: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal...Except you black folk, you're still going to be slaves..."

      American Exceptionalism: We want freedom of religion for all...Except if you try to build a mosque in Manhattan...

      American Exceptionalism: Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free... Except if your brown and live on our southern border...

      American Exceptionalism: We support the freedom to marry whom you choose...Except if they are of a different race or the same gender...

      October 10, 2013 at 12:45 pm |
  10. boocat

    Nothing I love more than some arrogant nut job that believes in an invisible man in the sky.

    October 10, 2013 at 10:59 am |
    • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

      2000 years ago you would have believed the same – had considered that?

      October 10, 2013 at 11:04 am |
      • Burzghash

        Good thing we're not living 2,000 years ago.

        October 10, 2013 at 11:15 am |
  11. Creationism 101

    "The world is flat" (fingers in ears) "La la la la la la la!!!!!!!"

    October 10, 2013 at 10:51 am |
    • Topher


      October 10, 2013 at 10:55 am |
      • Observer

        Yes, it is, but that's what the Bible says.

        (Daniel 4:11) “The tree grew in size and strength; it was as high as the sky; it could be seen from every corner of the earth.”

        (Isaiah 11:12) “And He will lift up a standard for the nations And assemble the banished ones of Israel, And will gather the dispersed of Judah From the four corners of the earth.”

        (Matt. 4:8) “Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory.”

        October 10, 2013 at 11:03 am |
        • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

          There you go with those facts, again.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:06 am |
        • Topher

          Not ONE of those things means the Bible says the world is flat. And I doubt very much you actually believe it says that.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:06 am |
        • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

          The next thing you'll probably say is that the infallible Bible says the earth was the center of the universe.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:11 am |
        • Topher

          Just one example of your dishonesty ... go one verse before the Daniel quote so you can read it in context ...

          "Thus were the visions of mine head in my bed; I saw, and behold a tree in the midst of the earth, and the height thereof was great.

          11 The tree grew, and was strong, and the height thereof reached unto heaven, and the sight thereof to the end of all the earth:"

          IT WAS A DREAM!

          October 10, 2013 at 11:14 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Everything in the Bible that seems untrue is idiomatic, allegorial or metaphorical.
          Unless it somehow can be rationalized as evidence of whatever it is you want to argue.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:16 am |
        • Observer


          Speaking of dishonesty, where is your rebuttal for the other two verses?

          You have a valid point on the one quote and I won't use it again.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:25 am |
        • Topher

          (Isaiah 11:12) “And He will lift up a standard for the nations And assemble the banished ones of Israel, And will gather the dispersed of Judah From the four corners of the earth.”

          The phrase "four corners of the earth" is like saying "from the four winds" ... it means from every direction.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:31 am |
        • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

          The nexxt thing you'll probably say is that the infallible Bible says the earth was the center of the universe.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:39 am |
        • Topher

          (Matt. 4:8) “Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory.”

          Luke Chapter 4 expounds on this a bit ...

          "And the devil, taking him up into an high mountain, shewed unto him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time."

          Seems like a vision to me.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:39 am |
        • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

          You do mean "delusion" instead of "vision."

          October 10, 2013 at 11:51 am |
        • Topher

          Youtube – Neil DeGrasse Tyson – The Perimeter of Ignorance

          "You do mean "delusion" instead of "vision.""

          Wow, a direct blasphemy. You're awfully brave.

          "Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain."

          October 10, 2013 at 11:54 am |
        • Observer


          So "four corners" means like "four winds". And talking about the devil indicates a "vision" not reality, but other references to the devil aren't "visions" of course. lol.

          Good ones.

          Since you've failed on those, how about trying to make pitiful excuses for the Bible insanely claiming the earth doesn't move. That is a huge, repeated "oooops!" in the Bible. Any research will show the earth moves in many directions at huge speeds including a thousand miles per hour at the equeator.

          October 10, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
        • Observer

          typo: equator

          October 10, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
      • Creationism 101

        Isn't it?

        October 10, 2013 at 11:04 am |
      • Alias

        You may recall something from history about Galelio and the pope having a dissagreement about this topic.
        The pope clearly thought the world was flat, and he required that idea to be taught in the schools.

        October 10, 2013 at 11:33 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Give them some credit!
          It might've taken 300 years or so, but the Vatican finally did admit that maybe Copernicus had a point...

          October 10, 2013 at 11:40 am |
  12. -_-

    I cannot stand these people. You either have a group of hypocrytical religous freaks telling you, you need God or arrogant morons telling you there is no God. Why can't religon be to each it's own. No one knows whats right or wrong, and if someone's opinion or beliefs works for them leave them alone. Why do they have to be wrong? Or they're going to hell? What -_- All in all isn't "God" supposed to be merciful? So just because your not part of some religous cult it means your damned? Please..I swear if everyone just converted to Buddhism we woouldn't be so close minded, hateful, and stupid. These religous people who go around trying to enforce their ways don't realize how asinine they are. The human brain is full of curiosity, let people explore and find their own to what fits their lifestyle.

    October 10, 2013 at 10:33 am |
    • Jean

      Religious belief held internally is not without external consequences.

      October 10, 2013 at 10:34 am |
      • -_-

        Says who? lol There is no law nor facts, not anything to prove that statement. Dismissed.

        October 10, 2013 at 10:36 am |
    • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

      To the contrary, we have a great deal of proof supporting one view, and absolutely no proof supporting the other. This is challenge of science, and it cannot be simply "let go."

      October 10, 2013 at 10:41 am |
    • Maxwell's Demon

      I can just feel the open-mindedness, lack of hate, and intelligence right in that second sentence of yours.

      October 10, 2013 at 11:08 am |
    • Alias

      If the christians in this country would do the work jesus told them to do, and let the schools teach science I would have no problem with them.
      Unfortunately, that is not the case.

      October 10, 2013 at 11:35 am |
  13. Franklin

    Hello Atheists,

    I am a Christian and I disagree with the message Answers In Genesis showed on time square.

    I do indeed believe in evolution.

    October 10, 2013 at 10:25 am |
    • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

      That's great that you have decided to challenge your beliefs and trust science. We don't have all the answers – we may never, but the explanations provided by science, with proof, make so much more sense than the stories provided by the various religions, without proof.

      October 10, 2013 at 10:32 am |
      • Mat

        Are you positive that you are the child of your parents? If you are a male: Do you have children? Is there absolute proof that they are yours? You could do DNA testing but have you? Do you have friends? A spouse? Prove that they love you using clean scientific proof. Maybe they don't really love you. If you haven't, maybe you should because if you can't scientifically prove it, it may not be true. I seriously doubt anyone does this kind of testing (except for the cases you see on Jerry Springer). You love your parents, friend, and spouse and trust in their love. Trusting a worthy witness is reasonable. For there to be no God, every witness of Jesus, every witness to the resurrection, every witness of God, every witness to a miracle of God, every personal witness to how God has worked in their life has to be wrong. Furthermore, if this witness is someone I trust personally, and their story is compelling, I believe them.

        October 10, 2013 at 11:33 am |
        • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

          Mat – That's simply, idiotic, and deserves no further discussion.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:37 am |
        • Anders

          Your Point was sadly lost on me.

          Other than you obviously are gullible enough to Believe anything as long as its a compelling story.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:50 am |
        • Maxwell's Demon

          Yeah, too bad none of these witnesses could be verified.

          October 10, 2013 at 12:42 pm |
    • Darw1n

      Hello Franklin, have a nice day.

      October 10, 2013 at 10:37 am |
    • Topher

      What is it that you disagree with?

      October 10, 2013 at 10:48 am |
      • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

        Ultimately, he probably disagrees with false prophets, such as the false prophets of creationism.

        October 10, 2013 at 10:52 am |
        • Topher

          So he's calling God a liar?

          October 10, 2013 at 10:54 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          Topher , once again putting words in someone elses mouth. No no one is calling god a liar. They are calling the people who wrote the bible and created your god liars, since they were.

          October 10, 2013 at 10:57 am |
        • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

          To say they were "lying," is a stretch. They may, indeed, have believed it. But also, religion wields tremendous power, as we can see in the history of the Catholic Church, as well as the modern political arena. People that would use religion to control people are indeed corrupt.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:02 am |
        • Topher

          Richard Cranium

          "They are calling the people who wrote the bible and created your god liars, since they were."

          And why do you believe that?

          October 10, 2013 at 11:04 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          I know the bible is false because I have read it , and then seen first hand the evidence that proves a lot of the bible wrong. Genesis is a joke. There NEVER was a global flood, we did not come from one genetic set.

          Why do you ignore scientifically sound facts and still believe that ridiculous story?

          October 10, 2013 at 11:08 am |
        • Topher

          Because no science can dispute it, for one. You claim there was no flood, but the fossil record would say otherwise. I understand you reject the Bible, but to sit there and say there's no evidence in support of it is just being dishonest.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:20 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          No the fossil record does not say otherwise. The fossil record is proof positive that no global flood has happened since life began on this planet. You can deny it all you want , but the proof is all around the world.
          The flood NEVER happened, not only is there a total lack of evidence for it, there are (quite literally) mountains of evidence to the contrary. To say there was a flod at this point is just willful ignorance. There is no debate, the flood never happened, the bible is flat out wrong, you are just refusing to accept reality once again.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:24 am |
        • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

          Fossils show that animals lived and died – that's it. Sedimentology tells us the various environments in which different kinds of sediment form. Radiometric dating tells us the age of rocks. These three elements together tell us the age of the earth. Lots of proof.

          In contrast, some people have chosen to believe an age for the earth based on stories in the Bible. Just stories. No proof.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:34 am |
        • Topher

          Youtube – Neil DeGrasse Tyson – The Perimeter of Ignorance

          "Fossils show that animals lived and died – that's it"

          I agree with that.

          "Sedimentology tells us the various environments in which different kinds of sediment form."

          Right. Look into bent/folded rock layers. Not only supports the flood, but also a young earth.

          "In contrast, some people have chosen to believe an age for the earth based on stories in the Bible. Just stories. No proof."

          True, I believe the Bible and it's the foundation of my beliefs, but that's not the only reason I am a young-earther. Again, saying there's no proof is fallacious.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:48 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          "Right. Look into bent/folded rock layers. Not only supports the flood, but also a young earth"
          No it most certainly does not. There are many bent/folded/ moved /uplifted/and eroded layers. No where anywhere is there evidence of a global flood occurring around the world at the same time. There are many places that show areas that are now dry land were once a seabed, but not all around the world at the same time.

          There is NO support for a world wide flood, ever ( and millions of tons of proof to the contrary)and to think the earth is less that several billion years old is again willful ignorance. It is only you blindly clinging to your man made story book. Pathetic.

          October 10, 2013 at 12:31 pm |
        • Joey

          Flood geology contradicts the scientific consensus in geology and paleontology, chemistry, physics, astronomy, cosmology, biology, geophysics and stratigraphy and the scientific community considers it to be pseudoscience.

          October 10, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
      • Brad

        Atheists are tired of calling themselves "Atheists" they now started calling themselves "Christians", Franklin is a prime example of one such fine atheist!

        October 10, 2013 at 10:54 am |
        • Maxwell's Demon

          And no true Scotsman would wear pants too!

          October 10, 2013 at 11:10 am |
      • Doc Vestibule

        He likely disagrees with the concept that adding up the "begats" in Genesis is a valid method of determining the age of the Earth or that the basic laws of Mendelian genetics were suspended a couple of times in the last few thousand years.

        Let's do the math, shall we?
        And just to be generous, we'll stipulate a mortality rate of 0, even from accidents.

        If you add up the begats in Genesis, you'll find that Noah was borns 126 years after Adam's death at age 930.
        Gen 7:6 tells us that Noah was 600 years old when the flood came, which brings us to the year 1656.
        If we assume that Genesis is being told in Chronological order, the Babel incident happened before Abraham came onto the scene in 1948AM – Gen 11 starts with Babel and ends with Abraham.
        So there you have it!
        1948 – 1656 = 292
        The Bible says that Noah didn't have any more kids after the flood, so that leaves us 3 breeding pairs of humans.
        So, we need to calculate growth based on initial population ( P ), growth rate ( R ), and number of years ( Y ).
        The formula looks like this: ((1+R) ^ Y) * P
        Plug in our numbers:
        ((1+0.03) ^292)*6 = 33622

        We're supposed to believe that all human cultures, languages, races etc started off with those 33622 people being separated when God has his hissy fit at Babel?

        October 10, 2013 at 11:12 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Almost forgot – I'm postulating a very generous population growth rate of 3% in this equation – double the current global rate.

          October 10, 2013 at 11:18 am |
  14. Dawkins


    October 10, 2013 at 10:18 am |
    • Franklin

      I read one of Dawkins books-The greatest story ever told.

      It was a good read.

      October 10, 2013 at 10:26 am |
    • LOL

      Well that was a bit bunch of, well...


      October 10, 2013 at 10:26 am |
  15. Mat

    Can you imagine if Dawkins were to change his mind and believe that Aristotle's God created the world? Yet that is what renowned former atheist Anthony Flew did. Flew looked at the DNA evidence and was true to his character and followed it where it led him. One thing I admire about Flew is that even as an atheist he was respectful of other's beliefs. I believe respect on both sides is important when having a meaningful conversation. Calling people names and making snide comments (in either direction) is only needed when an individual is not confident in the validity of their own arguments. The arguments should be strong enough to speak for themselves. When Flew was an atheist, he was actually very good friends with CS Lewis. They respected each other and both had good conversation.

    October 10, 2013 at 10:16 am |
    • Timmy

      "the DNA evidence"

      of what?

      October 10, 2013 at 10:20 am |
      • Mat

        Read Flew's latest book.

        October 10, 2013 at 12:04 pm |
    • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

      There are true stories of some atheists turning back to religion, and of religious people turning back to atheism. What does that show? That religion, through it's deep hooks of pain, suffering, and punishment, and the carrot of eternal life, all unproven, can tempt people away from their positions.

      October 10, 2013 at 10:36 am |
    • Mat

      I think everyone should be true to character and follow the evidence where it leads them. I just don't think it is necessary or helpful to deride people that disagree with you (whether you are atheist or theist). You can be an intelligent thinking person and be theist or atheist. Just like Flew.

      October 10, 2013 at 10:41 am |
      • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

        I would agree. There is nothing constructive in being uncivil in discourse – it persuades no one.

        October 10, 2013 at 10:49 am |
    • tallulah13

      Flew suffered from dementia and was exploited by creationists who falsely told him they were scientists. Even after his "conversion", he did not believe in any of the gods claimed by any religion. Not even your god.

      Flew is an example of the cynical and immoral lengths some christians will go to defend their myth. The fact that you hold this up as an example of your faith says more about you and your morals than it does about Flew and his "conversion"

      October 10, 2013 at 11:38 am |
  16. aldewacs2

    The creation museum is an insult to human knowledge, and a flashing beacon of stupidity. It will be the subject of countless jokes for generations to come.

    October 10, 2013 at 10:08 am |
    • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

      It's worse than that – it's a denial of human knowledge, it's a denial of human achievement – it's a denial of reality.

      October 10, 2013 at 10:14 am |
    • Alias

      It is in Kentucky.
      I've been to Kentucky. Many areas of kentucky are openly prejudice against anyone non-christian.
      They will continue to hide from science and rational thought for several more generations.
      They did not form their beliefs in god based on logic or reason, and you will have a hard time changing their minds with logic and reason.

      October 10, 2013 at 11:42 am |
  17. Hdrpyn

    In a few hundred of years, science has taken us farther in understanding the universe than religion has in 10,0000 years.

    October 10, 2013 at 9:57 am |
    • aldewacs2

      That's OK. Religion is shrinking, science is growing.
      Soon religion will be a benign social club where people go for social contacts and share stories. A nice place, in other words.

      October 10, 2013 at 10:05 am |
      • Doc Vestibule

        It's already happening in the Unitarian Universalist Churches.

        October 10, 2013 at 10:08 am |
    • Youtube - Neil DeGrasse Tyson - The Perimeter of Ignorance

      As some people say, science has discovered everything, whereas intelligent design has discovered nothing.

      October 10, 2013 at 10:16 am |
      • aldewacs2

        DIS-covering is not a strong suit of creationism or creationists.
        Covering UP facts is more their 'thing'.

        October 10, 2013 at 11:04 am |
  18. Harv

    Belief in a god is a matter of faith: one either believes or does not believe.

    Evolution is a matter of understanding: if you don't understand, you are either intellectually lazy, or intellectually dishonest.

    October 10, 2013 at 9:56 am |
    • ME II

      Well said!

      October 10, 2013 at 9:58 am |
      • ME II

        Although, I would add " or just don't understand". Not everyone is lazy or dishonest.

        October 10, 2013 at 10:00 am |
  19. The Perimeter of Ignorance

    As astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson explains, throughout history most of the great minds give no credit to any god for their discoveries and explanations. That is, until they reach the next problem they feel they cannot tackle. Perhaps that is all God has ever been – a placeholder for the frustration over the unknown – it's simply always at the perimeter of ignorance or laziness.


    October 10, 2013 at 9:50 am |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.