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November 18th, 2013
08:18 AM ET

Religion as solace in the Philippines

Tacloban City, The Philippines (CNN) - The day after the typhoon, the Rev. Edwin Bacaltos stepped out of the compound of the Church of Our Mother of Perpetual Help in central Tacloban and began his work.

The scene was one of unspeakable horror. Dead bodies were strewn all over the place. The debris of shattered buildings and their contents filled the street.

Bacaltos' self-appointed task that day was to bless the bodies that lay scattered around his parish.

"It was difficult for me," he said. "It was a really emotional experience."

The next day, he said, "When I celebrated the Eucharist, I broke down because of all the suffering I had seen."

Hundreds of survivors were taking refuge in the church compound, much of which withstood Super Typhoon Haiyan's ferocious winds and destructive storm surge.

Many of them asked the pastor how God could let such a calamity befall this predominantly Catholic city.

His response, he said, was to tell them that "God is not the cause of the suffering. God cannot prevent this. This is the work of nature."

But why it had to happen to Tacloban and its more than 200,000 residents, Father Bacaltos acknowledged, is "difficult to explain."

As the people who remain in this broken city attempt to come to terms with the catastrophe that engulfed them a week ago, religion is offering a degree of solace for some of those who have suffered incalculable losses.

It's also providing basic elements of community and support to residents of an area where local government ceased to fully function for several days and is still only slowly sputtering back into action.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Catholic Church • Christianity • Death • Faith • Foreign policy • Philippines

soundoff (1,313 Responses)
  1. AverageJoe76

    Soooooo ......... like what's the point in ME having any earthly decisions after you've told me this?

    “God: there is no other god besides Him, the Living, the Eternal. Never a moment of unawareness or slumber overtakes Him. To Him belongs everything in the heavens and everything on earth. Who could intercede with Him, except in accordance with His will? He knows their past, and their future. No one attains any knowledge, except as He wills. His dominion encompasses the heavens and the earth, and ruling them never burdens Him. He is the Most High, the Great.” [2:255]"

    If God controls everything, why wouldn't he be controlling my thoughts. He sees my past and future (I'm automatically obsolved in ALL my actions – God did it, not me!) A super-being that created everything, knows everything, and controls everything needs absolutely NOTHING from me. Not worship nor praise OR even a thought. Why should I? Everything is on auto-pilot.

    November 18, 2013 at 3:06 pm |
    • niknak

      No Joe, you missed the fine print on the whole god is in control thing.

      God is only in control of the good things, like scoring touchdowns and winning the lottery.
      The bad things it is not responsible for at all, unless it happens to people/places who are considered bad.

      November 18, 2013 at 3:40 pm |
      • truthprevails1

        Lets not forget the jesus statue that was saved during the typhoon...had to have been a miracle (or not) :-).

        November 18, 2013 at 3:47 pm |
    • Alias

      Not sure I agree with your reasoning.
      Just because he knows what you are going to do, that doesn't mean he is going to make you do it.

      November 18, 2013 at 4:03 pm |
      • Sara

        No, but if he created a universe that follows laws he did.

        November 18, 2013 at 11:01 pm |
  2. Universe

    Quran says (Islamic Scripture)

    “God: there is no other god besides Him, the Living, the Eternal. Never a moment of unawareness or slumber overtakes Him. To Him belongs everything in the heavens and everything on earth. Who could intercede with Him, except in accordance with His will? He knows their past, and their future. No one attains any knowledge, except as He wills. His dominion encompasses the heavens and the earth, and ruling them never burdens Him. He is the Most High, the Great.” [2:255]

    “There shall be no compulsion in religion: the right way is now distinct from the wrong way. Anyone who denounces the devil and believes in God has grasped the strongest bond; one that never breaks. God is Hearer, Omniscient.” [2:256]

    “God is Lord of those who believe; He leads them out of darkness into the light. As for those who disbelieve, their lords are their idols; they lead them out of the light into darkness – these will be the dwellers of Hell; they abide in it forever.” [2:257]

    “The example of Jesus, as far as GOD is concerned, is the same as that of Adam; He created him from dust, then said to him, "Be," and he was.” Quran [3:59]

    “It does not befit God that He begets a son, be He glorified. To have anything done, He simply says to it, "Be," and it is.” [19:35]

    “No soul can carry the sins of another soul. If a soul that is loaded with sins implores another to bear part of its load, no other soul can carry any part of it, even if they were related. ... [35:18]

    “They even attribute to Him sons and daughters, without any knowledge. Be He glorified. He is the Most High, far above their claims.” Quran [6:100]

    Thanks for taking time to read my post. Please take a moment to visit whyIslam org website.

    November 18, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
    • niknak

      Or not........

      November 18, 2013 at 2:43 pm |
    • truthprevails1

      Or perhaps you could take a minute to visit godisimaginary.com?

      November 18, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
    • ME II

      @Universe,
      Just curious, but why is it so bad if GodAllah has/creates a son? If He can say 'Be' and it is, then why can't He say 'Be an embryo'?

      November 18, 2013 at 2:55 pm |
  3. Jeff Roem

    And ever!

    November 18, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
    • Alias

      deep jeff.
      Very poetic too.

      November 18, 2013 at 3:17 pm |
  4. JW

    The religious leaders don't know why much suffering... Though the bible explains why... Have you considered studying the bible and see why?
    Jehovah's witnesses will be happy to help who ever is interested, charge free, in a location and time of you interest.

    November 18, 2013 at 2:04 pm |
    • niknak

      The babble is nothing more then a collection of 2000 year old goat herder fables.
      Your god only exists in your head and imagination.
      The sooner you let go of your security blanket, the better your life will be become.

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

      November 18, 2013 at 2:08 pm |
      • JW

        The fact that many think of the bible as a book of fables, is only an opinion, just like the philosophy's made by the so called thinkers of the Greek empiour ... What about if the answer is actually in the bible, and other people opinions have block others from seeing that?
        Millions continue with no answers.

        November 18, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
        • niknak

          I think I will still stick with the science JWMarriott.

          You can use your book of myth anyway you want, but could you please get your friends to stop leaving religious literature on my front stoop, it is a mess to clean up after it rains.....

          November 18, 2013 at 2:30 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          JW
          When so much of the bible is so clearly false, such as Noah's flood, which NEVER happened, and SO many other instances that are clearly false, it is not opinion. The bible IS worng.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          Some call Aesop's factual stories fables as well but that is just their opinion...

          "The Lion and the Fox went hunting together. The Lion, on the advice of the Fox, sent a message to the Ass, proposing to make an alliance between their two families. The Ass came to the place of meeting, overjoyed at the prospect of a royal alliance. But when he came there the Lion simply pounced on the Ass, and said to the Fox:

          "Here is our dinner for to-day. Watch you here while I go and have a nap. Woe betide you if you touch my prey."

          The Lion went away and the Fox waited; but finding that his master did not return, ventured to take out the brains of the Ass and ate them up. When the Lion came back he soon noticed the absence of the brains, and asked the Fox in a terrible voice:

          "What have you done with the brains?"

          "Brains, your Majesty! it had none, or it would never have fallen into your trap."

          November 18, 2013 at 2:38 pm |
        • JW

          Niknak- whatever you to our literature it's your business... Just be a man and respectfull when we go to your door and say: " I'm not interested" instead of hiding behind the couch waiting for the JWs to go away. How do we know if your not interested if you don't tell us?

          November 18, 2013 at 2:46 pm |
        • niknak

          Why do you believers have to come to my door in the first place?

          I must be living in the Great Bermuda Myth Triangle as I get visited by your various myths monthly.
          Why do I have to interrupt my day, or my dinner to come and answer that door to have someone want to talk to me about god?

          Us non believers don't come to your door and try to talk you out of believing.

          I think it is very rude of you to do that.
          And after bothering people with your opinions, you still have the nerve to come here and tell us you don't force your beliefs on others.

          THAT is all you believers do, is try to force your beliefs on others.
          And if you had your way, you would make this a xtian nation, and bring back blasphemy laws to hunt down and kill people like me who won't go along.

          You are a complete hypocrite JWMarriott.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:57 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          Geological evidence shows no global flood. DNA evidence shows humans interbred with neanderthals and denisovians. Human remains from 30,000 years ago shows our ancestors had roughly the same life spans as we enjoy today, not some 800 to 900 year life spans as spoken of in Genesis. DNA also shows we did not descend from a single breeding pair of pre-made humans. All of this debunks Genesis thus invalidates anything in the bible that comes after it.

          November 18, 2013 at 3:03 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          niknak
          You have every right that you do to do it. Next time they come to the door, go with them, and use the time to explain why you do not believe. They really don't like the an opposing view to come along with them. I did that twice...they now avoid my house.

          The mormons are even easier to deal with and REALLY hate it when you join them. It is a free country so they can't stop you from coming along.

          November 18, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
        • OTOH

          niknak,
          "if you had your way, you would make this a xtian nation, and bring back blasphemy laws..."

          Actually, one of the very few good things about JWs is that they don't vote or get involved in government at all - maybe we should encourage all of those Evangelical Christian government lobbyists & their supporters to be JWs!

          November 18, 2013 at 3:08 pm |
        • niknak

          I have done that from time to time Rich, but the problem is they keep multiply like bacteria on a cold gym shower floor, and the next wave come and I have to spend more of my time going over the same ground as I did with the former petri dish of them.

          You are right, they get really uncomfortable when you confront them on their parroted routine, and usually just go away thinking I am too weird to try to talk to.
          The Jahova Witness literature is actually pretty funny. I once got a comic book from them showing how someone who turns away from god will turn out. Sublimely funny.
          I bring it out once in awhile when I need a good laugh.

          November 18, 2013 at 3:35 pm |
        • God of Dreams

          In the Big Inning...

          If you create them, they will come.

          November 18, 2013 at 3:39 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @JW
      Are you among the 144,000 Heaven bound souls?
      JW theology turns off a lot of people, especially other Christians, becuase you reject the divinity of Christ.
      You don't get far with red state Americans since you eschew any type of patriotism (like standing for the national anthem).
      And for the love of anything sacred, what exactly is sinful about playing chess?

      November 18, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
      • Joey

        I have never understood why, with a membership of over 5 million, they are still out seeking converts when only 144,000 will go to heaven.

        November 18, 2013 at 3:14 pm |
        • Fan2C

          Joey,

          They think that there will be a sort of rejuvenated Earth where they'll live happily ever after and all the bad guys (non-believers) will be dead.

          November 18, 2013 at 3:19 pm |
      • OTOH

        Yeah, and they celebrate folks' wedding anniversaries but not their birthdays...?

        November 18, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
      • JW

        Tell me... What do you believe in? How do you back it up with scriptures?

        November 18, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @JW
          I am a naturalist.
          I am fascinated with mythology of all kinds and have studied quite a number of holy books, including several different transaltions of all 3 books of the Bible (OT, NT, Book of Mormon).
          I'm just saying that the majority of Christians consider your particular sect heretical because it is non-trinitarian.
          Plus, most Christian sects use the afterlife reward/punishment schtick as an incentive – and yet JWs don't believe in Hell and state that only a handful of people (all of them Jehovah's Witnesses, of course) will get to see Heaven.

          November 18, 2013 at 3:40 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @JW
          Most days after work, I climb off the subway and make a pit stop for a pint before I go into after work parent mode.
          (a beer a day keeps the psychiatrist away, imo) and wind up passing by a JoHo setup on the street corner purporting to teach what the Bible REALLY says.
          Are there any questions you think I should ask those people?

          November 18, 2013 at 3:50 pm |
        • JW

          Doc- I respect your point of view...keep in mind what others say about JW are often partially right... They just don't explain to you why we believe or not on those things, we have biblical background for all things you mentioned!

          November 18, 2013 at 4:07 pm |
    • doobzz

      Pretty arrogant of you to assume that no one else here has studied the bible.

      November 18, 2013 at 3:21 pm |
      • JW

        I'm saying that...many called Christian have studied the bible, the problem is that they have misunderstood the bible!

        November 18, 2013 at 3:26 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          JW
          40,000 versions of christianity.

          It seems EVERYONE had misunderstood the bible.
          Considering how much of it is so obviously not true, it is a wonder any believe it.

          November 18, 2013 at 3:30 pm |
        • doobzz

          Of course! They just studied wrong!

          More arrogance. Who decided you're the one who studied it "right"?

          November 18, 2013 at 3:39 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Which Bible is the true one again?
          American Standard Version, American King James Version, Amplified Bible, An American Translation, ArtScroll Tanakh (Old Testament), An American Translation, Berkeley Version, Bible in English, The Bible in Living English, Bishops' Bible, Catholic Public Domain Version, Children's King James Version, Christian Community Bible, English version, Clear Word Bible, Complete Jewish Bible, Contemporary English Version, Concordant Literal Version, A Conservative Version, Coverdale Bible, Darby Bible, Douay-Rheims Bible, Douay-Rheims Bible (Challoner Revision), EasyEnglish Bible, Easy-to-Read Version, English Jubilee 2000 Bible, English Standard Version, Ferrar Fenton Bible, Geneva Bible, God's Word, Good News Bible, Great Bible, Holman Christian Standard Bible, The Inclusive Bible, International Standard Version, Jerusalem Bible, Jewish Publication Society of America Version Tanakh (Old Testament), Judaica Press Tanakh (Old Testament), ia E. Smith Parker Translation, King James 2000 Version, King James Easy Reading Version, King James Version, King James II Version, Knox's Translation of the Vulgate, Lamsa Bible, A Literal Translation of the Bible, Leeser Bible, Tanakh (Old Testament), The Living Bible, The Living Torah and The Living Nach. Tanakh (Old Testament), Matthew's Bible, The Message, Modern King James Version, Modern Language Bible, Moffatt, New Translation, James Murdock's Translation of the Syriac Peshi.tta, New American Bible, New American Standard Bible, New Century Version, New English Bible, New English Translation (NET Bible), New International Reader's Version, New International Version Inclusive Language Edition, New International Version, New Jerusalem Bible, New Jewish Publication Society of America Version. Tanakh (Old Testament), New King James Version, New Life Version, New Living Translation, New Revised Standard Version, New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures, Quaker Bible, Recovery Version of the Bible, Revised Version, Revised Standard Version, Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition, Revised English Bible, Rotherham's Emphasized Bible, The Scriptures, Simplified English Bible, The Story Bible, Taverner's Bible, Thomson's Translation, Today's New International Version, Third Millennium Bible, Tyndale Bible, Updated King James Version, A Voice In The Wilderness Holy Scriptures, Webster's Revision, Westminster Bible, The Work of God's Children Illustrated Bible, Wycliffe's Bible (1380), Wycliffe's Bible (1388), Young's Literal Translation???

          November 18, 2013 at 3:43 pm |
        • JW

          Doc- all bibles are true... Ones have and old vocabulary other a modern ones, easier to understand.

          About the fact the Jw bible explanations repeal many people.. It doesn't matter, what matters is that we are talking the truth and sound gods will... How many survived the flood??

          November 18, 2013 at 3:54 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          JW
          No one survived the flood of the bible, since we now have proof that it never happened.

          November 18, 2013 at 4:15 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @JW
          I believe the Old Testament to be an apocryphal history of the Jewish people – not meant to be interpreted any more literally than The Epic of Gilgamesh or Beowulf – but my understanding is that Noah, his three sons and their respective wives were all on board the Ark.
          Now, Noah didn't have any more kids afterwards – and who can blame him. I can only imagine how difficult it must be to get in the mood for lovin' at the age of 600.

          November 18, 2013 at 4:23 pm |
  5. Helen Keller

    Four things to learn in life: To think clearly without hurry or confusion To love everybody sincerely; To act in everything with the highest motives; To trust God unhesitatingly.

    November 18, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      I love the first three, the fourth doesn't seem to make any logical sense: "To trust God unhesitatingly" which might as well be "To trust leprechauns unhesitatingly." I mean, trust what? That rainbows will lead to pots of gold?

      November 18, 2013 at 2:02 pm |
      • Helen Keller

        I thank God for my handicaps. For through them, I have found myself, my work and my God.

        November 18, 2013 at 2:10 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          Your only handicap seems to be responding as a person who every knows you are not, so if you lie about who you what does that make you? A truth teller or just another petty liar?

          November 18, 2013 at 2:14 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Joni Tada has a similar testimony.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
    • niknak

      Why can't you just stop at 3?
      4 is in direct conflict with the first 3, as seen by how you believers interact with believers of other believer's god(s).

      Why can't you live your life without the need to have a big brother watching over you?

      November 18, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
      • Geez

        Quit looking for reasons to be offended.

        November 18, 2013 at 2:13 pm |
        • niknak

          I am only offended by one thing, believers trying to pass of their myth as fact.
          And then using it to ask for tax relief for their various houses of myth, and then trying to inject their myth into our secular government.

          Look bro, you bought off on a big lie. You wanna keep going along with it, fine. But leave us out of it.
          Howl at the moon all you want, but stop trying to make us go out and how with you.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
        • when atheists behave like fundamentalists

          Spot on.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:36 pm |
    • AverageJoe76

      "To trust God unhesitatingly"

      Ok, then which one are we talking about? "Kill the infidels"-god?
      "I'ma send myself AS my son, to get myself killed, for my self-sacrafice" -god?
      "I throw bolts of lightening" -god?

      November 18, 2013 at 2:17 pm |
  6. AverageJoe76

    An example of truth: "Fire is hot"
    "It gets dark when the sun goes down"
    "If I can't breathe, I'll die"

    An example of BS: "I have a personal relationship with God"
    "God told me to tell you this......."
    "God spoke to me............."

    Why is it BS? Ask them what God sounds like. Ask them why doesn't he speak to all of us. And why hasn't God revealed any latest advancement for mankind through these 'conversations' – no scientific/ medical breakthroughs. Y'know simple stuff..... like washing your hands before meals so we don't get sick. Hardly any common sense or REAL life applications. Just spiritual, INVISIBLE things that are never confirmed....... UNLESS....... you have faith. Which is like a membership card for dellusion.

    November 18, 2013 at 1:42 pm |
    • Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room

      I always get annoyed with the personal relationship one. It's particularly retarded.

      November 18, 2013 at 1:43 pm |
      • niknak

        The annoyance for me is that it is the one that they hold as "proof" and can be invoked at anytime when the believer is being pressed about their imaginary friend's existence.

        November 18, 2013 at 1:53 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          "Atheism seems to be populated by people with quite a few negative personality traits."
          Not believing in a god without evidence is a negative trait?

          "It annoys me!
          "And I thought a goal of you JC followers was tolerance

          November 18, 2013 at 2:03 pm |
        • Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room

          Yeah, but we're still right.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:03 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          OMG
          ALL babies are born atheists. Would you like to reconsider your statement?

          November 18, 2013 at 2:10 pm |
        • niknak

          Would you like to share with us some of those negative personality traits that annoy you?
          Because us non believers have quite a few traits that you believers have that annoy us.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:13 pm |
        • OMG

          Ok, atheism is like thinking like a baby. I'm agnostic, save your anti-christian b.s. for someone else. You all are some d.ckheads. Atheists and super religious people are so much alike!

          November 18, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
        • Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room

          No they're not.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:18 pm |
        • Sara

          OMG, if you look up the dictionary definition of "atheist" you'll find it includes both people who disbelieve in gods and those who simply lack a belief. I think this is a bad use of language but that's just how it is, so many who call themselves "atheists" also refer to themselves as "agnostics" and making the distinctions you are trying to make isn't going to work without more information from you on what exactly you do and don't believe. If you lack a belief in gods you will be considered by a good number of people to be an atheist, whether you believe gods possible or not.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
        • Science

          http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/collideascape/2012/12/31/when-atheists-behave-like-fundamentalists/#.Uopo8SeMDwM

          November 18, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
        • Science Works

          Science Is that you faith ?

          November 18, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          Sara
          I agree with you, except for your own poor choice of words.

          I lack belief is the same as saying I lack cancer.

          I do not lack belief, I just do not have it.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:46 pm |
        • AverageJoe76

          To OMG, I was once an agnostic like you. I had to admit that I'm really an agnostic-atheist. I feel where you're coming from, but some of the things your hearing from atheists is pure fustration. We see all the death, corruption, and misleading that comes from beliefs thousands of years ago. And at onetime they might've made sense, but they don't make ANY sense today. People's lives are being lead by 'The Invisibles'. But the humans that will gladly take advantage of that belief are very real.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:48 pm |
        • Sara

          Richard, those aren't my words, which is why I mentioned the dictionary. See the OED. Personally, I don't see "lack" the same way you do so it doesn't bother me, but the OED defines it both ways so if that's your dominant understanding I can see why it would bother you.

          November 18, 2013 at 3:00 pm |
      • Sara

        I agree the "personal relationship" one sounds. particularly odd, but I think we tend to misunderstand this...at least as some people mean it. Talking to folks who say things like this and reading a few others I've come to think most of these folks mean something closer to:

        I have a personal relationship with ice cream

        or

        I have a personal relationship with the universe.

        They (usually) don't mean something that similar to "I have a personal relationship with the guy next door".

        November 18, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
        • Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room

          Like the difference between the love a man has for his wife and the love a man feels for a fine, Cuban cigar (to quote Dr Julius Hibbert).

          November 18, 2013 at 3:22 pm |
    • Ummmm

      Fire is hot to us. If I light a candle and put a piece of steel above it it won't melt. The fire is not hot enough.
      The sun doesn't go down. It is actually the Earth that rotates and moves around the sun.
      We all die. Even those who can breath.

      November 18, 2013 at 1:52 pm |
      • AverageJoe76

        But you cannot deny the truth in each statement. I'm human, so I can only give you those 'truths' from my perspective. All-in-all..... there's not many who'd call any of them 'BS'.

        November 18, 2013 at 1:59 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          They may be basically true but there is no evidence that a god did it.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:05 pm |
        • when atheists behave like fundamentalists

          CAN YOU STOP TALKING ABOUT GOD FOR LIKE 1 MINUTE? HOLY CRAP YOU ARE SO OBSESSED AND COMPLETELY UNAWARE OF WHAT YOU DO!

          November 18, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
        • Ugg - another CAPOLOGIST screaming

          shut it when ath,

          November 18, 2013 at 3:18 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          If that was meant for me – are you aware that this is a belief blog? If you want to discuss another topic, find a suitable blog. The belief in a god is the underpinning for a religion – as there is no evidence for a god the religions that include a personal god (all that I'm aware of) have no foundation. So quoting that religion's text is unconvincing.

          November 18, 2013 at 3:18 pm |
    • Alias

      What really bothers me is how they refuse to acknowledge that all religions have exactly the same 'proof' for their beliefs.

      November 18, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
  7. Live4Him

    @In Santa we trust : What evidence do you have that a god created time?

    Genesis 1:1-5
    In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth[MATTER]. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light[ENERGY]. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness[TIME]. God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day.

    November 18, 2013 at 1:29 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      you are confused.
      he asked for evidence
      not the opening to a book of fairy tales
      just put "Once upon a time" in front of that
      and it makes perfect sense.

      November 18, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
    • Lawrence of Arabia

      And to think that Herbert Spencer got all the credit for naming the Five Categories of the knowable, when it was there in black and white all the time, written by Moses!

      November 18, 2013 at 1:33 pm |
      • Check

        Lawrence of Arabia,

        How about Five Categories of Nonsense (+) from ol' Moses:

        – You cure leprosy by having a dove killed, dipping a live one in its blood and having it fly around. Also, you have to anoint the toes of the suffer with the blood.–Leviticus 14

        – You discover unfaithful wives when their bellies swell and their thighs rot after they are made to drink some magical water. – Numbers 5

        – Prized striped goats are bred by having the mating parents stare at striped objects. –Genesis 30

        – You may buy, own, sell, and will slaves to your descendants (only foreigners for slaves, though, no Israelis) –Leviticus 25

        - “If two men are fighting, and the wife of one man tries to rescue her husband by grabbing the other man’s private parts, you must cut off her hand. Don’t have any mercy." Deuteronomy 25

        There are several other similar instances of absolute rubbish that this "God" purportedly "spoke", along with a bunch of other rules and laws and rituals that are obviously only from the minds of primitive men. How anyone can believe that this stuff came from a real smart divine being is ludicrous.

        November 18, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
        • niknak

          Yet they cling to it like life itself Checkplease.

          And they will kill your children to prove to you that their god does in fact exist.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:39 pm |
        • Check

          And Lawrence ducks behind a sand dune AGAIN!

          November 18, 2013 at 5:00 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Check,
          I didn't duck away from answering anything, I had work to do.
          At any rate, why should I answer the questions of someone who is only interested in mocking? I'll answer any honest question as best I know how, but to someone who doesn't really wish to read the Bible rightly and not take things out of their intended context, if I dive in and discuss anything with him, it will only lead to an argument.

          November 19, 2013 at 8:11 am |
        • Check

          Lawrence,

          I know that you see it as "mocking" and "out of context", but go read them (and they aren't the only ones) and check to see that Moses (or ?) SAID the the "Lord" TOLD him those things.

          November 19, 2013 at 11:34 am |
    • Jake

      And babies are sinful and deserving of death because they cry immediately after their born.
      Yeah. I'll take you seriously.

      November 18, 2013 at 1:44 pm |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      "In the beginning there was only the swirling watery chaos, called Nu. Out of these chaotic waters rose Atum, the sun god of the city of Heliopolis. It is believed that he created himself, using his thoughts and will. In the watery chaos, Atum found no place on which to stand. In the place where he first appeared, he created a hill."

      Creation myth Moses was taught as a prince of egypt before he wrote Genesis and told his people about Adam...

      November 18, 2013 at 2:08 pm |
    • niknak

      Please show us where in the babble it states matter, and energy.
      Oh that's right, it doesn't, you are just putting your knowledge that you got from science onto what those goat herders transcribed 2000 years ago when they had no friggin' idea about science.

      Your religion is a joke, and we are all laughing at you, but you are too dense to see it.

      But keep on believing, the religious scammer depend on you to make a living off of.

      November 18, 2013 at 2:17 pm |
  8. Bootyfunk

    i wonder if god killed all these men, women and children on purpose with this storm...
    it wouldn't be the first time he drowned children with a big storm.

    amen.

    November 18, 2013 at 1:25 pm |
    • Where was non-belief when...

      Non-belief did not save them so your god is a cruel an murderous god.

      November 18, 2013 at 1:50 pm |
      • Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room

        😉

        November 18, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
      • ME II

        "Non-belief did not save them so your god is a cruel an murderous god."

        1) There is no god in "non-belief"
        2) No one ever claimed that non-belief would save anyone, except from belief.

        November 18, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
      • doobzz

        Laughable.

        November 18, 2013 at 6:08 pm |
  9. Science Works

    For L4H join the real auction and learn something.

    Time for the real world creationist./ID believers

    Reuters

    November 15, 2013
    NEW YORK — Fossils of two dinosaurs found in Montana and locked eternally in a fierce death match could fetch a potential record $9 million when they are sold in New York next week, the Bonhams auction house said on Thursday.

    November 18, 2013 at 1:25 pm |
    • Science Works

      Forgot L4H no soft tissue needed or gods required.

      November 18, 2013 at 1:28 pm |
    • Live4Him

      http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/dinosaur.html

      It was big news indeed last year when Schweitzer announced she had discovered blood vessels and structures that looked like whole cells inside that T. rex bone—the first observation of its kind.

      Schweitzer, one of the first scientists to use the tools of modern cell biology to study dinosaurs, has upended the conventional wisdom by showing that some rock-hard fossils tens of millions of years old may have remnants of soft tissues hidden away in their interiors. “The reason it hasn’t been discovered before is no right-thinking paleontologist would do what Mary did with her specimens. We don’t go to all this effort to dig this stuff out of the ground to then destroy it in acid,” says dinosaur paleontologist Thomas Holtz Jr., of the University of Maryland. “It’s great science.”

      November 18, 2013 at 1:36 pm |
      • Science Works

        They have stony irons on display too. no gods required.

        “This is bigger than finding any dinosaur,” Chatterjee said. “This is what we’ve all searched for – the Holy Grail of science.”

        Thanks to regular and heavy comet and meteorite bombardment of Earth’s surface during its formative years 4 billion years ago

        Paper No. 300-5: Impact, RNA-Protein World and the Endoprebiotic Origin of Life https://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2013AM/webprogram/Paper222699.html

        http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/10/131029133124.htm

        November 18, 2013 at 1:50 pm |
        • Live4Him

          http://phys.org/news3506.html

          Current theories about fossil preservation hold that organic molecules should not preserve beyond 100,000 years.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:57 pm |
        • Science Works

          Cool L4H you are on the right track reading from science sites and not from the silly bible.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:12 pm |
        • ME II

          @Live4Him,
          It would seem apparent that either the current theories about the longevity of soft tissue need revising or the tissue is not actually from the T-rex, either finding would be interesting.
          Just to be thorough, the least likely possibility is that the T-rex in question is only a few thousand years old, because of the geologic evidence supporting dinosaurs being extinct for millions of years.

          November 18, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
        • Science Works

          L4H and the newest one found in Utah and how old is the United States ?

          Do some simple math 75 to 90 million years old minus the age of the US. Geology works. ( the dirt guys)

          Newly Discovered Predatory Dinosaur 'King of Gore' Reveals the Origins of T. Rex

          Nov. 6, 2013 — A remarkable new species of tyrannosaur has been unearthed in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument (GSENM), southern Utah.

          November 18, 2013 at 3:47 pm |
  10. Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the War Room

    If religion gives you solace in difficult times, go for it. Anything that gives you comfort when you need it is a mostly positive thing. However, it only takes a moderate logical jump to see that, if you believe in an omnipotent, omniscient god, you're taking comfort from the very being that is causing all of your pain.

    November 18, 2013 at 1:20 pm |
  11. Dyslexic doG

    Yesterday morning there was a knock at my door. A pleasant and enthusiastic young couple were there.

    John: "Hi! I'm John, and this is Mary."

    Mary: "Hi! We're here to invite you to come kiss Hank's ass with us."

    Me: "Pardon me?! What are you talking about? Who's Hank, and why would I want to kiss His ass?"

    John: "If you kiss Hank's ass, He'll give you a million dollars; and if you don't, He'll kick the guts out of you."

    Me: "What? Is this some sort of bizarre mob shake-down?"

    John: "Hank is a billionaire philanthropist. Hank built this town. Hank owns this town. He can do whatever He wants, and what He wants is to give you a million dollars, but He can't until you kiss His ass."

    Me: "That doesn't make any sense. Why..."

    Mary: "Who are you to question Hank's gift? Don't you want a million dollars? Isn't it worth a little kiss on the ass?"

    Me: "Well maybe, if it's legit, but..."

    John: "Then come kiss Hank's ass with us."

    Me: "Do you kiss Hank's ass often?"

    Mary: "Oh yes, all the time..."

    Me: "And has He given you a million dollars?"

    John: "Well no. You don't actually get the money until you leave town."

    Me: "So why don't you just leave town now?"

    Mary: "You can't leave until Hank tells you to, or you don't get the money, and He kicks the guts out of you."

    Me: "Do you know anyone who kissed Hank's ass, left town, and got the million dollars?"

    John: "My mother kissed Hank's ass for years. She left town last year, and I'm sure she got the money."

    Me: "Haven't you talked to her since then?"

    John: "Of course not, Hank doesn't allow it."

    Me: "So what makes you think He'll actually give you the money if you've never talked to anyone who got the money?"

    Mary: "Well, maybe you'll get a raise, maybe you'll win a small lotto, maybe you'll just find a twenty-dollar bill on the street."

    Me: "What's that got to do with Hank?"

    John: "In this town, Hank is the same as good luck. All good things are attributed to Hank'"

    Me: "I'm sorry, but this sounds like some sort of bizarre con game."

    John: "But it's a million dollars, can you really take the chance? And remember, if you don't kiss Hank's ass He'll kick the guts out of you."

    Me: "Maybe if I could see Hank, talk to Him, get the details straight from Him..."

    Mary: "No one sees Hank, no one talks to Hank."

    Me: "Then how do you kiss His ass?"

    John: "Sometimes we just blow Him a kiss, and think of His ass. Other times we kiss Karl's ass, and he passes it on."

    Me: "Who's Karl?"

    Mary: "A friend of ours. He's the one who taught us all about kissing Hank's ass. All we had to do was take him out to dinner a few times."

    Me: "And you just took his word for it when he said there was a Hank, that Hank wanted you to kiss His ass, and that Hank would reward you?"

    John: "Oh no! Karl has a letter he got from Hank years ago explaining the whole thing. Here's a copy; see for yourself."

    From the Desk of Karl
    1. Kiss Hank's ass and He'll give you a million dollars when you leave town.
    2. Use alcohol in moderation.
    3. Kick the guts out of people who aren't like you.
    4. Eat right.
    5. Hank dictated this list Himself.
    6. The moon is made of green cheese.
    7. Everything Hank says is right.
    8. Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.
    9. Don't use alcohol.
    10. Eat your wieners on buns, no condiments.
    11. Kiss Hank's ass or He'll kick the guts out of you.

    Me: "This appears to be written on Karl's letterhead."

    Mary: "Hank didn't have any paper."

    Me: "I have a hunch that if we checked we'd find this is Karl's handwriting."

    John: "Of course, Hank dictated it."

    Me: "I thought you said no one gets to see Hank?"

    Mary: "Not now, but years ago He would talk to some people."

    Me: "I thought you said He was a philanthropist. What sort of philanthropist kicks the guts out of people just because they're different?"

    Mary: "It's what Hank wants, and Hank's always right."

    Me: "How do you figure that?"

    Mary: "Item 7 says 'Everything Hank says is right.' That's good enough for me!"

    Me: "Maybe your friend Karl just made the whole thing up."

    John: "No way! Item 5 says 'Hank dictated this list himself.' Besides, item 2 says 'Use alcohol in moderation,' Item 4 says 'Eat right,' and item 8 says 'Wash your hands after going to the bathroom.' Everyone knows those things are right, so the rest must be true, too."

    Me: "But 9 says 'Don't use alcohol.' which doesn't quite go with item 2, and 6 says 'The moon is made of green cheese,' which is just plain wrong."

    John: "There's no contradiction between 9 and 2, 9 just clarifies 2. As far as 6 goes, you've never been to the moon, so you can't say for sure."

    Me: "Scientists have pretty firmly established that the moon is made of rock..."

    Mary: "But they don't know if the rock came from the Earth, or from out of space, so it could just as easily be green cheese."

    Me: "I'm not really an expert, but not knowing where the rock came from doesn't make it plausible that it might be made of cheese."

    John: "Ha! You just admitted that scientists don’t know everything, but we know Hank is always right!"

    Me: "We do?"

    Mary: "Of course we do, Item 7 says so."

    Me: "You're saying Hank's always right because the list says so, the list is right because Hank dictated it, and we know that Hank dictated it because the list says so. That's circular logic, no different than saying 'Hank's right because He says He's right.'"

    John: "Now you're getting it! It's so rewarding to see someone come around to Hank's way of thinking."

    Me: "But...oh, never mind.

    from Jhuger.com

    November 18, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
    • Ctrl + C - Crtl + V

      Decent technique.

      November 18, 2013 at 12:53 pm |
    • Ctrl + C - Crtl + V

      Oops, wrong place sorry. Although your technique is quite nice.

      November 18, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
      • Ctrl + C - Crtl + V

        That was a total Ctrl + C – Crtl + V, my bad.

        November 18, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
  12. Jesus Loves You!

    God tells us in bold terms the root problem. It’s not the nonbelievers’ view of the Book; it’s their view of the Author. All people already know God because He is clearly seen in His creation, and His moral law is also written on their hearts (Romans 1:20; 2:15). But they “suppress,” or hold down, the truth in unrighteousness because their proud hearts are rebellious and they do not want to submit to the truth (Romans 1:18, 21–23; 2:14–15).

    When people reject the Bible’s historical accounts of Creation and a global Flood, for example, Peter says they are “willfully” ignorant (2 Peter 3:5). It’s not a matter of evidence; they just don’t want to be convinced.

    So it is a mistake to proceed as though the main problem is a lack of knowledge. Your hearers have a heart problem. They have rejected the God of the Bible even before they begin to consider whether His Word could be true.

    November 18, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
    • Ctrl + C - Crtl + V

      Decent technique.

      November 18, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      why post quotes from your book?

      Using the words of someone in the same cult as you, who is just as deluded as you, to prove your point is hilarious!

      November 18, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
    • Richard Cranium

      False.
      I have considered every word of the bible and it fails. There never was a worldwide flood...you cannot tell if a wife is unfaithful by having her drink your magic water mixed with dust from the floor, and you cannot make striped goats by having them stare at striped objects. The bible fails in many, many ways.

      It is not will ful ignorance, that is you not accepting the reality of things. I know your bible has many places where it is self affirming (I'm right because I say I am right, and I know I am right because I said so.)

      There are so many flaws to the bible, that anyone that employs actual knowledge and logic, can see it is false, and makes no sense.

      November 18, 2013 at 12:54 pm |
    • Lawrence of Arabia

      John Owen has said that it is not that atheists reject the creator God who made the universe and set things into motion, but rather, they reject the God to whom they must be accountable for their sin. (paraphrased)

      November 18, 2013 at 12:59 pm |
      • TDM

        Doesn't matter what JO thinks, because he doesn't speak for anyone but himself.

        November 18, 2013 at 1:03 pm |
      • Richard Cranium

        LoA
        That may have been ture for some, but certainly not me. I do not reject gods...that would mean they exist and I deny the existance.
        No one ever has shown that any god exists, so I reject it as anything other than an hypothesis. No known validity to the hypothesis, so no reason, nor method to pursue it.

        November 18, 2013 at 1:06 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          There's a difference between "proof" and "evidence." Scientists want to reduce the entire universe to objective matter or processes, but since God is spirit, and spirit is supernatural, then by definition, the supernatural doesn’t lend itself to discovery by tools designed to work within a physical and natural realm. We can however produce evidence for the existence of God, but evidence is open to interpretation – that's why we have atheists in the first place.

          The scientific method is not the most fundamental form of knowledge, as it presupposes other truths such as metaphysics, apprehension and logic. The scientific method is built upon the limitations of experiments, and since there aren’t an infinite number of experiments that can be conducted, scientific knowledge can never cross the threshold of absolute knowledge.

          In the end, proof of the existence of God is revealed, not discovered.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
        • AE

          Most people on here are looking for an idol, not God, in my opinion.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          LoA
          You presume there is a god, therefore anything you say after that shows you bias, and the inability to apply logic.

          Along those lines, you can subst!tute an infinite number of other possibilities in place of your word god,( such as The Matrix) and any of them would carry the same weight, and have the same validity.

          That is why you have to make stuff up. You cannot apply logic to that which there is no evidence for.

          When you say you have evidence...your evidence is also equal to the evidence that we are in the matrix...no difference...it is just your bias keeps showing through.

          You do not seek truth at all...you look for verification of what you WANT to be the truth, hence total logic fail.
          You choose delusion over reality. Good luck with that.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:28 pm |
        • AE

          Wow, that's a lot of "you" statements.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:35 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          AE, I'm just pointing out your delusion. As I've said before if you applied the same logic to religion that you presumably use with AE you'd see how poorly it stands up.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:35 pm |
        • AE

          Santa,
          You don't seem to get it. I'm not delusional or mentally ill like you imagine. Evidence points to the fact that people that believe in God are just as logical, reasonable and good members of society as those who reject God. God is real. Just because you don't see or believe it doesn't make Him any less real.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:43 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          AE
          Steadfastly making a claim that god is real, when you can provide absolutely no evidence for any gods, and the inability for you to acknowledge that the personal evidence you claim to have could have many other possible explainations, is in fact proof of your delusion.

          Can you say that you might be wrong?

          November 18, 2013 at 1:57 pm |
        • AE

          Yea, I am wrong about a lot of things.

          In your opinion, and the opinion of a few other people like Santa and Dyslexic doG, I am delusional. But I don't base my life or my self identi.ty on the opinion of a few people that spend a lot of time talking about God and religion on the faith and belief blog, especially when the evidence points to the fact that they are hostile and arrogant toward people who believe God is real.

          In other words, I'm not worried that a few people call me names like "delusional" in an attempt to cut me down. I know the truth about what and why I believe.

          I'll leave you to imagine whatever you want.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          AE
          Yeah...that's the stuff.
          It wasn't meant as an insult. Simply identifying an issue based on your inability to accept that there are many, many, (nearly infinite) number of other possibilities that have just as much evidence for them as your god hypothesis.

          It truly is irrational, and illogical, but also mostly harmless, as long as you don't force others to the belief, or legislate based on the belief.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
        • fred

          Richard Cranium
          "It truly is irrational, and illogical, but also mostly harmless, as long as you don't force others to the belief, or legislate based on the belief."
          =>this is what the godless do not understand and cannot understand because of bias driven my sin, physical/emotional injury caused by a believer or neurological disorder: Mankind has only known existence under a prevailing belief that there is something greater than self which is the cause and purpose of existence. When that humbling attitude is absent we have no history or idea what such a godless existence would look like

          November 18, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
        • AE

          I love when people try to dictate what they simply imagine I believe. No, I don't 'have an inability to accept that there are many, many, (nearly infinite) number of other possibilities that have just as much evidence for them as your god hypothesis.'

          That is just what you imagine. It is a delusion. Not real.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          AE
          Considering that this is the first time I have ever seen you admit you could be wrong, my part is understandable.

          Now considering the probabilities, admitting you probably are wrong is the next step.
          But we'll have to accept the personal growth so far. There may be hope for you after all.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
        • AE

          My faith is still in God. I don't have much trust and confidence in atheism or people on the internet who try to dictate what I believe (instead of asking). Both have failed me.

          November 18, 2013 at 3:22 pm |
      • In Santa we trust

        I don't have sin. Sin is only possible in a religious context. So why would I be accountable to your imaginary friend?

        November 18, 2013 at 1:32 pm |
        • fred

          Exactly how does that work? The Greeks loved their pederasty which was approved by mothers who offered their young boys into the waiting arms of old men whom today we would call sickos. The mothers did it for their own personal social status and they too are guilty of child endangerment today. None of them knew God so they did not know sin. It is in fact sin.
          If there is no God or there is God matters not since they missed the mark set by God (real or not). Now, if there is no God then you and Greeks share in same sinless afterlife and at that point sin does not matter and you are vindicated in your godlessness.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:49 pm |
  13. Tom, Tom, the Other One

    I'll put this on top because that is where Live4Him likes to put things.

    There is a Law of Non-Contradiction. It is important to the definition of (logically) possible worlds. Perhaps Live4Him would like to go into what makes this, our world, a possible world.

    November 18, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
    • Live4Him

      @Tom, Tom, the Other One : I'll put this on top because that is where Live4Him likes to put things.

      Thanks! It makes it easier to find.

      @Tom, Tom, the Other One : There is a Law of Non-Contradiction. It is important to the definition of (logically) possible worlds.

      Huh? I don't understand what you're intending here. The law of non-contradiction is one for logic. What does it have to do with 'worlds'?

      November 18, 2013 at 12:43 pm |
      • Tom, Tom, the Other One

        A world is pretty much what it sounds like – a place where there are things, facts about those things, events etc. The Law of Non-Contradiction is one law that must be present if a world is to be said to be possible. God is said by some to be necessary being – present in all possible worlds. You seem to be saying that the Law of Non-Contradiction is a law here in this world. Is this world a possible world?

        November 18, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
        • Live4Him

          @Tom, Tom, the Other One : Is this world a possible world?

          Why do you think that it is not?

          November 18, 2013 at 1:09 pm |
        • Tom, Tom, the Other One

          I think it is a possible world.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
        • Live4Him

          @Tom, Tom, the Other One : I think it is a possible world.

          Same here, so we're in agreement. However, the law doesn't apply to 'worlds', but rather to logical arguments.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:19 pm |
        • Tom, Tom, the Other One

          Arguments are in worlds. It has everything to do with worlds: in an impossible world that law might not apply. Arguments that depend on it would not be valid. Logic would not work in ways that are familiar to you. Would you agree that God is a necessary being, present in all possible worlds? Another way of looking at it – is there at least one possible world, perhaps ours, in which there is nothing like God?

          November 18, 2013 at 1:26 pm |
  14. Colin

    Believers have inconsistent cards in their hands that they deal as the facts dictate.

    Card 1. God is sovereign over all nature and controls it
    Card 2. God elects not to intervene to control things in order to give man free will
    Card 3. God is kind and loving and WILL intervene and perform miracles to save people
    Card 4. God will punish sinners
    Card 5. God moves in mysterious ways

    Then, whenever any aspect of a tragedy needs explaining, they just choose their appropriate card and play it.

    For example, "Why did this tornado happen" – Play card 2 or 5

    "Did you hear about the statue (or baby or group of people) who survived" -Play card 1 or 3

    “Why do good things happen to bad people”- Play card 2 or 5

    “The Philippines just legalized [gay marriage/contraception/abortion] – Play card 4

    “Do prayers work?” – Play card 3

    “Why were my prayers ignored” – Play card 2 or 5

    But, then again, blatant internal inconsistency has never been an impediment to a good religion now, has it?

    November 18, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
    • Alien Orifice

      You are such a card.

      November 18, 2013 at 12:19 pm |
      • Colin

        I need to be dealt with.....

        November 18, 2013 at 12:23 pm |
        • doobzz

          What a joker.

          November 18, 2013 at 12:24 pm |
      • Fan2C

        That's a pip!

        (and I get a triple!)

        (this is rather esoteric - definitions of pip:
        1. a mark on a playing card
        2. an apple seed
        3. one who is extraordinary)

        November 18, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
        • Fan2C

          dang, I just noticed you posted as Alien Orifice, not Apple Bush!

          November 18, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
        • doobzz

          Well played, good sir!

          November 18, 2013 at 12:36 pm |
        • TDM

          Lol. Same guy so you're safe.

          November 18, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
        • Apple Orifice

          lol

          November 18, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
    • Live4Him

      @Colin : Believers have inconsistent cards in their hands that they deal as the facts dictate.

      Four blind men encountered an elephant. Each man described the animal differently. One described is as a thin wiggly snake. Another said, no, it is like a massive snake. Yet a third said it was like a tree-trunk. The fourth said they were all wrong, it was like a large wall. Who was right? They all were. The same is true of your 'cards'.

      God created the heavens and the earth, so He is ruler over all. However, he also put Satan in charge of this system, so he is not in day-to-day control. However, he can intervene when desired. Eventually, Satan will be removed from power and cast out. With Satan out of the way, God will directly interact with his followers.

      November 18, 2013 at 12:33 pm |
      • Colin

        But none described it as a fish with scales or a bird with feathers. That is how blatantly inconsistent the believers deack of cards is.

        November 18, 2013 at 12:36 pm |
        • Live4Him

          @Colin : That is how blatantly inconsistent the believers deack of cards is

          Care to elucidate your response? Can you supply facts (i.e. Biblical quotes) that are inconsistent?

          November 18, 2013 at 12:39 pm |
        • Alias

          what were the last words jesus spoke on the cross?

          November 18, 2013 at 12:43 pm |
        • Colin

          Well, actually, I said the believer's logic as demonstrated by the deak of cards was inconsistent, not the Bible, but, given that you asked me, let's look at the nature of Godf himself. Here are some blatant inconsistnecies in the Bible on that point.

          1. God is satisfied with his works
          Gen 1:31
          God is dissatisfied with his works.
          Gen 6:6

          2. God dwells in chosen temples
          2 Chron 7:12,16
          God dwells not in temples
          Acts 7:48

          3. God dwells in light
          Tim 6:16
          God dwells in darkness
          1 Kings 8:12/ Ps 18:11/ Ps 97:2

          4. God is seen and heard
          Ex 33:23/ Ex 33:11/ Gen 3:9,10/ Gen 32:30/ Is 6:1/
          Ex 24:9-11
          God is invisible and cannot be heard
          John 1:18/ John 5:37/ Ex 33:20/ 1 Tim 6:16

          5. God is tired and rests
          Ex 31:17
          God is never tired and never rests
          Is 40:28

          6. God is everywhere present, sees and knows all things
          Prov 15:3/ Ps 139:7-10/ Job 34:22,21
          God is not everywhere present, neither sees nor knows all
          things
          Gen 11:5/ Gen 18:20,21/ Gen 3:8

          7. God knows the hearts of men
          Acts 1:24/ Ps 139:2,3
          God tries men to find out what is in their heart
          Deut 13:3/ Deut 8:2/ Gen 22:12

          8. God is all powerful
          Jer 32:27/ Matt 19:26
          God is not all powerful
          Judg 1:19

          9. God is unchangeable
          James 1:17/ Mal 3:6/ Ezek 24:14/ Num 23:19
          God is changeable
          Gen 6:6/ Jonah 3:10/ 1 Sam 2:30,31/ 2 Kings 20:1,4,5,6/
          Ex 33:1,3,17,14

          10. God is just and impartial
          Ps 92:15/ Gen 18:25/ Deut 32:4/ Rom 2:11/ Ezek 18:25
          God is unjust and partial
          Gen 9:25/ Ex 20:5/ Rom 9:11-13/ Matt 13:12

          November 18, 2013 at 12:44 pm |
        • Colin

          Here's 10 more

          11. God is the author of evil
          Lam 3:38/ Jer 18:11/ Is 45:7/ Amos 3:6/ Ezek 20:25
          God is not the author of evil
          1 Cor 14:33/ Deut 32:4/ James 1:13

          12. God gives freely to those who ask
          James 1:5/ Luke 11:10
          God withholds his blessings and prevents men from receiving
          them
          John 12:40/ Josh 11:20/ Is 63:17

          13. God is to be found by those who seek him
          Matt 7:8/ Prov 8:17
          God is not to be found by those who seek him
          Prov 1:28

          14. God is warlike
          Ex 15:3/ Is 51:15
          God is peaceful
          Rom 15:33/ 1 Cor 14:33

          15. God is cruel, unmerciful, destructive, and ferocious
          Jer 13:14/ Deut 7:16/ 1 Sam 15:2,3/ 1 Sam 6:19
          God is kind, merciful, and good
          James 5:11/ Lam 3:33/ 1 Chron 16:34/ Ezek 18:32/ Ps 145:9/
          1 Tim 2:4/ 1 John 4:16/ Ps 25:8

          16. God's anger is fierce and endures long
          Num 32:13/ Num 25:4/ Jer 17:4
          God's anger is slow and endures but for a minute
          Ps 103:8/ Ps 30:5

          17. God commands, approves of, and delights in burnt offerings,
          sacrifices ,and holy days
          Ex 29:36/ Lev 23:27/ Ex 29:18/ Lev 1:9
          God disapproves of and has no pleasure in burnt offerings,
          sacrifices, and holy days.
          Jer 7:22/ Jer 6:20/ Ps 50:13,4/ Is 1:13,11,12

          18. God accepts human sacrifices
          2 Sam 21:8,9,14/ Gen 22:2/ Judg 11:30-32,34,38,39
          God forbids human sacrifice
          Deut 12:30,31

          19. God tempts men
          Gen 22:1/ 2 Sam 24:1/ Jer 20:7/ Matt 6:13
          God tempts no man
          James 1:13

          20. God cannot lie
          Heb 6:18
          God lies by proxy; he sends forth lying spirits to deceive
          2 Thes 2:11/ 1 Kings 22:23/ Ezek 14:9

          November 18, 2013 at 12:45 pm |
        • Colin

          Here's 10 more.

          21. Because of man's wickedness God destroys him
          Gen 6:5,7
          Because of man's wickedness God will not destroy him
          Gen 8:21

          22. God's attributes are revealed in his works.
          Rom 1:20
          God's attributes cannot be discovered
          Job 11:7/ Is 40:28

          23. There is but one God
          Deut 6:4
          There is a plurality of gods
          Gen 1:26/ Gen 3:22/ Gen 18:1-3/ 1 John 5:7

          24. Robbery commanded
          Ex 3:21,22/ Ex 12:35,36
          Robbery forbidden
          Lev 19:13/ Ex 20:15

          25. Lying approved and sanctioned
          Josh 2:4-6/ James 2:25/ Ex 1:18-20/ 1 Kings 22:21,22
          Lying forbidden
          Ex 20:16/ Prov 12:22/ Rev 21:8

          26. Hatred to the Edomite sanctioned
          2 Kings 14:7,3
          Hatred to the Edomite forbidden
          Deut 23:7

          27. Killing commanded
          Ex 32:27
          Killing forbidden
          Ex 20:13

          28. The blood-shedder must die
          Gen 9:5,6
          The blood-shedder must not die
          Gen 4:15

          29. The making of images forbidden
          Ex 20:4
          The making of images commanded
          Ex 25:18,20

          30. Slavery and oppression ordained
          Gen 9:25/ Lev 25:45,46/ Joel 3:8
          Slavery and oppression forbidden
          Is 58:6/ Ex 22:21/ Ex 21:16/ Matt 23:10

          November 18, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
        • Colin

          Here's another 10.

          31. Improvidence enjoyed
          Matt 6:28,31,34/ Luke 6:30,35/ Luke 12:3
          Improvidence condemned
          1 Tim 5:8/ Prov 13:22

          32. Anger approved
          Eph 4:26
          Anger disapproved
          Eccl 7:9/ Prov 22:24/ James 1:20

          33. Good works to be seen of men
          Matt 5:16
          Good works not to be seen of men
          Matt 6:1

          34. Judging of others forbidden
          Matt 7:1,2
          Judging of others approved
          1 Cor 6:2-4/ 1 Cor 5:12

          35. Christ taught non-resistance
          Matt 5:39/ Matt 26:52
          Christ taught and practiced physical resistance
          Luke 22:36/ John 2:15

          36. Christ warned his followers not to fear being killed
          Luke 12:4
          Christ himself avoided the Jews for fear of being killed
          John 7:1

          37. Public prayer sanctioned
          1 Kings 8:22,54, 9:3
          Public prayer disapproved
          Matt 6:5,6

          38. Importunity in prayer commended
          Luke 18:5,7
          Importunity in prayer condemned
          Matt 6:7,8

          39. The wearing of long hair by men sanctioned
          Judg 13:5/ Num 6:5
          The wearing of long hair by men condemned
          1 Cor 11:14

          40. Circu.mcision insti.tuted
          Gen 17:10
          Circu.mcision condemned
          Gal 5:2

          I could continue. I have a list of 120, but I trusty I have made my point. Look, I have no doubt you will explain them away. If there is one talent you have demonstrated consistently, it is your ability to swallow the most implausible of explanations,to maintain your faith.

          November 18, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @L4H

          "Thou shalt not bow down thyself unto them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me..."
          – Deuteronomy 5:9

          "Yet say ye, Why? doth not the son bear the iniquity of the father? When the son hath done that which is lawful and right, and hath kept all my statutes, and hath done them, he shall surely live."
          – Exekiel 18:19

          So does god punish chilren for the sins of their fathers or not?

          November 18, 2013 at 12:50 pm |
        • Monty Python

          Run away! Run away !

          November 18, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
        • Alias

          that was overkill Colin.
          It would have been harder for him to talk his way around one.

          November 18, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
        • Colin

          Ezekiel just clarifies Dueteronomy doc. In Deuteronomy, God was talikng about duaghters only. In Ezeikel, God specifically immunes sons from punishment.

          clearly God is referring to the great woman's curse – menstration!!!

          This is also proof for Tropher and L4H that the Bible knew all about ovarian cancer centuries before medical science discovered it – you know, like the round Earth,the infinite stars and deep sea vents.....

          November 18, 2013 at 12:57 pm |
        • Live4Him

          @Colin : Here are some blatant inconsistnecies in the Bible on that point. 1. God is satisfied with his works / God is dissatisfied with his works. 2. God dwells in chosen temples / God dwells not in temples

          So, at one time you were a child and now you're an adult. Does that make your history inconsistent? No. Rather, it just shows the passage of time. The same applies for all your examples.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
        • Colin

          Ok, I'll add "God goes through puberty" to my list of reasons the Bible only SEEMS to be inconsistent. I gotta admit, it's a doozie

          November 18, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
        • Live4Him

          @Doc Vestibule : So does god punish chilren for the sins of their fathers or not?

          It depends. Do the children inherit his character? In most cases, yes. If a father is a drunk, his children are likely to have some form of dependency. If a father is upstanding citizen, the children are likely to be the same. However, each can choose his/her own path. When a sin grabs hold of an individual, that sin is often passed on to his/her offspring. After three or four generations, the sin is weakened and the offspring can choose to go another route.

          BTW – for those wishing to debate me, this will be my last post on this thread. It is getting too long and hard to follow (i.e. where to scroll to make the reply).

          November 18, 2013 at 1:16 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Lie4Him, So god is evolving?

          November 18, 2013 at 1:19 pm |
      • Grand

        God has the power to cast Satan out now. He chooses not to.

        What a load of happy horseshit.

        November 18, 2013 at 12:42 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      You are Aces!

      November 18, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      You've got an ace up your sleeve.

      November 18, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
    • niknak

      Really nice summation of how the believer's mind works.
      Yet when they got seriously ill, or have a bad accident, they throw all that god rubbish away and run as fast as they can to the hospital to let science make them well so they don't die.

      Funny that, they all believe they will be going to heaven, and want to go there as soon as possible, yet none of them want to die.

      November 18, 2013 at 2:24 pm |
  15. Apple Bush

    God fathered himself after he already existed. This would be a clue that there are flaws in the Bible.

    November 18, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
    • Charm Quark

      AB
      I have been pondering the new ti tle The Final Shove. Some constructive criticism. The ti tle seems to be projecting the climax far to early without the foreplay, after all the hunt can be as interesting as the result.

      November 18, 2013 at 12:39 pm |
      • Apple Bush

        Well, it hurts but I can accept constructive criticism. How about the title, "Brazilian Paradise"?

        November 18, 2013 at 12:46 pm |
        • Apple Bush

          Genesis is already shaping up to be a steamy thriller. I will be including the first wife of course. Fireworks!

          November 18, 2013 at 12:48 pm |
        • Charm Quark

          AB
          Brilliant, jesus as the Boy from Brazil and cloning could replace the immaculate deception and Mary could be depicted as 8 months pregnant, a new soured of income for the RCC, Statuettes of the Beloved Knocked-up Mary.

          November 18, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
        • Apple Bush

          Hmmmm.....yes I could see some freaky preggo action in there....

          November 18, 2013 at 1:01 pm |
        • Apple Bush

          I was thinking of adding some Manga illustrations too, to attract the cosplayers to the word of God.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
        • Charm Quark

          AB
          Have to go get a flu shot I fear the viruses are approaching, later.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:14 pm |
  16. AverageJoe76

    How can a newborn baby be a 'sinner'?

    And if technically babies are not 'sinners', why wasn't God satisfied with those baby deaths (Noah, Proof for Pharoah) he commanded all over the Bible instead of needing to kill himself, to satisfy himself?

    Jesus was the 'perfect' sacrafice. But I can't think of anything more PURE, than a baby.

    Thoughts?.......... on this obviously thoughtless point in the Bible?

    November 18, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
    • doobzz

      It's that "inherited sin" nonsense. Adam's "sin" stains all mankind from conception to death. They make you guilty when you're still a zygote.

      November 18, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
      • Apple Bush

        Stupid zygotes.

        November 18, 2013 at 12:18 pm |
        • Charm Quark

          So many zygotes get flushed down the toilet, not to mention all the gamete cells that are wasted just for the fun of it.

          November 18, 2013 at 12:26 pm |
    • Charm Quark

      Kind of ironic that god can't control the forces of nature or just can't be bothered and yet he managed to produce enough water to flood the earth. Silly stories even sillier believers.

      November 18, 2013 at 12:23 pm |
    • Live4Him

      @AverageJoe76 : How can a newborn baby be a 'sinner'?

      What is a sinner? It is one who sins. What is sin? It is a selfish act. What is the first thing a baby does after birth? Crys – i.e. acting selfish. This is referred to as original sin. Nobody had to teach that newborn to cry, it knew how to instinctively.

      November 18, 2013 at 12:26 pm |
      • Charm Quark

        Lie4Himm
        You have fallen to a new level of stupidity that is ad hominem rightly deserved.

        November 18, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
      • Alias

        Seriously?
        Babies are sinners because at birth they cannot communicate in a spoken language and take care of themselves?

        Your god will send them to hell for that?

        November 18, 2013 at 12:30 pm |
      • TDM

        Oh. My. Goodness.
        You need some mustard for that pretzel logic.
        I hope you don't have any children.

        November 18, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
      • Madtown

        a baby does after birth? Crys – i.e. acting selfish
        ----
        LOL!!! Wow. Exhibit 1A, regarding the damage that religion does to the human mind.

        November 18, 2013 at 12:39 pm |
      • doobzz

        A baby's first breath of air after expelling amniotic fluid from its lungs is selfish because it makes a noise?

        That's astonishingly stupid, even for you.

        November 18, 2013 at 12:42 pm |
        • Live4Him

          @doobzz : is selfish because it makes a noise?

          Because it protesting a change to its comfort.

          November 18, 2013 at 12:46 pm |
        • doobzz

          It's clearing its lungs, fool.

          November 18, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
      • Just the Facts Ma'am...

        Baby kittens cry, does that mean their mommy ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and bad too?

        L4H, this was stupid even for you, and that is saying something...

        November 18, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
      • AverageJoe76

        LOL, that's a brand-new kinda crazy!

        C'mon..... Live4Him – should the baby (new to EVERYTHING, especially communication) articulate in a language [their not familiar with] that they're hungry and need a diaper change?

        November 18, 2013 at 1:15 pm |
        • Jake

          Yeah, anything to justify why babies are born sinful and bad. This "logic" is staggeringly stupid.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:27 pm |
      • Dippy Longstocking

        It's cries, not crys.

        November 18, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
        • matte

          y

          November 18, 2013 at 7:35 pm |
        • matte

          y?

          November 18, 2013 at 7:36 pm |
      • ME II

        @Live4Him,
        "What is the first thing a baby does after birth? Crys – i.e. acting selfish. This is referred to as original sin"

        Usually there is an requirement of moral agency in any assignment of moral responsibility.

        November 18, 2013 at 2:39 pm |
      • Sara

        Ok, I think perhaps I've been suckered. Is anyone really this stupid?

        November 18, 2013 at 2:45 pm |
  17. Robert

    Religion as solace in the Philippines? Sounds more like children trying to defend an abusive parent.

    November 18, 2013 at 12:06 pm |
  18. Apple Bush

    Typhoon

    It is cracked and all of joy and reality is being sucked into the earth like a black hole unwilling to release any happiness back to Earth and each person in reviewing their lives and religion now face the abyss completely naked and alone.

    Stolen and attacked by their own homes and returned to nothing.

    November 18, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
  19. Apple Bush

    The Filipinos need our help however, and I say this ONLY if you have time, try to save the Lumpia!

    November 18, 2013 at 12:01 pm |
  20. Lawrence of Arabia

    Here's a Biblical response to any tragedy in our lives. Some may not like it, but it's Biblical. (scriptural references available upon request)

    First, God is Sovereign over all. Everything that happens in life, happens because God ordained it to be so. He created the righteous to demonstrate His mercy and grace, as well as the unrighteous to demonstrate His justice – after all, doesn’t the potter have the right over the clay to create some vessels for noble use, and some vessels for a common use? And in order to bring about His ultimate plan to glorify Himself, He ordains all of the intricate workings of His creation, but never violating the free will of humanity. Remember, even those ordained to destruction do so willingly because they would rather glorify themselves than God. God does not control man’s acts by forcing them to do things against their will, but by so ordering the facts and circ.umstances of their lives, and the moral state of their hearts, that they voluntarily, of their own accord, without any constraint, always do exactly what God has foreordained that they are to do.

    Next, we learn from the teachings of Jesus, specifically in Luke 13:1-5 that horrible things happen to otherwise “good” people that are perpetrated by others who are very wicked, and in just the same way, natural disasters also come and kill many “innocent” people.

    What we can gleam from this is twofold:

    oThat there was not a single person who was killed who was not going to die anyway. Since God is sovereignly in control and works all things according to the council of His own will, and He works all things for good to those who love God – as tragic as those deaths were, if they loved God, then they were immediately put into the presence of God, for the ultimate good of any believer is to be with God

    oFurthermore, Jesus tells us that unless we repent, we will all likewise perish – in other words, no one knows the day nor the hour that they will die, so they must always be prepared to do so – therefore repent and trust in Christ.

    The Natural revelation now bears witness to man of God's wrath against sin. Not that every individual’s death is a direct penalty to that person for their specific sins, but that sin in general is responsible for death – death is but a temporal reminder of God's future wrath to come in dealing with sins once and for all. Therefore, when you see death, let it always be a reminder to repent.

    November 18, 2013 at 11:49 am |
    • Where was non-belief when...

      Atheists will twist everything you said. Just watch.

      November 18, 2013 at 11:55 am |
      • Lawrence of Arabia

        I thought "Twisted Scripture" was a rock band in the 80's? Oh, wait a minute... 😉

        November 18, 2013 at 11:58 am |
      • Apple Bush

        I am working on twisting this all around right now. More to follow.

        November 18, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
        • Where was non-belief when...

          We know atheists will twist verses much like Christians do to support their position. If an atheist thinks God is murderous, they will skip around to verses that support that position. Skipping around so your position is supported doesn't mean you are "more" educated than Christians.

          November 18, 2013 at 12:09 pm |
        • Apple Bush

          Who can guess why the previous post did not make any sense?

          November 18, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
      • Chubby Checker

        As long as I get my royalties, twist away, friends!

        November 18, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
      • Richard Cranium

        where
        Lie4 him, lies, and twists not only his magic book, but also twists and misrepresents science, and you think that atheists are twisting what he says?

        Hilarious.

        November 18, 2013 at 12:22 pm |
    • doobzz

      Cool story, bro.

      November 18, 2013 at 11:56 am |
    • Madtown

      Some may not like it, but it's Biblical.
      ---–
      Meaning what? That it's beyond question? Absolutely true? Christianity is your preferred form of man-made religion, which is certainly fine. It does NOT represent any sort of universal standard, because it's not universally available. It can't be "truth" for ANYONE until it's available to EVERYONE.

      November 18, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
      • Lawrence of Arabia

        "It can't be "truth" for ANYONE until it's available to EVERYONE."

        Not true. You're assuming that only truth that is known is truth. I can go to another country and not be familiar with their laws, but I am still subject to them.

        November 18, 2013 at 12:43 pm |
        • Madtown

          We're not talking about traffic laws, as you are fond of saying these are "God's laws". Didn't God create us all? Does he have different laws for different countries, like humans do? No. These "laws" are to be applicable to the entirety of humanity, christians like to say so. So, the problem remains: until a religion, any religion, is completely accessible to ALL human beings, it CANNOT be put up as a manual, or set of laws, for all human beings to follow, with the penalty being eternal separation from God. And if that's the case, there's no reason to believe the laws should apply to anyone.

          November 18, 2013 at 12:59 pm |
    • TDM

      I find that God choosing to wreak havoc on one of the most devout Christian nations on earth to be rather weird...and to do so repeatedly is just plain odd.
      If Christianity is the One True Religion, it would make more sense for His wrath to be busted on the predominately Muslim nations, no?
      A far more logical answer is weather happens.

      November 18, 2013 at 12:13 pm |
    • ME II

      "God does not control man’s acts by forcing them to do things against their will, but by so ordering the facts and circ.umstances of their lives, and the moral state of their hearts, that they voluntarily, of their own accord, without any constraint, always do exactly what God has foreordained that they are to do."

      What a passive-aggressive, manipulative way to run a universe. 'I set up the entire system so that you would do exactly what I wanted you to do... but, hey, it was your choice and now you will pay for it forever.'

      November 18, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
      • Live4Him

        @ME II : I set up the entire system so that you would do exactly what I wanted you to do.

        Not quite. God set up an entire system, which we rejected. Thus, he set up consequences to our actions to encourage us to do his will. Humans do the same thing – be it laws or school. Both are designed to guide us into making good choices.

        November 18, 2013 at 12:36 pm |
        • JWT

          Sometimes the right choice is not that proposed by the law or the school system. Not everyone fits the standard mould.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
        • ME II

          @Live4Him,
          "Not quite. God set up an entire system, which we rejected."

          Not according to @Lawrence of Arabia, whom I was quoting.

          "God does not control man’s acts by forcing them to do things against their will, but by so ordering the facts and circ.umstances of their lives, and the moral state of their hearts, that they voluntarily, of their own accord, without any constraint, always do exactly what God has foreordained that they are to do."

          November 18, 2013 at 2:08 pm |
        • Sara

          "God set up an entire system, which we rejected"

          I take it that's an exclusive "we", because I don't remember rejecting anything.

          November 18, 2013 at 2:14 pm |
    • Colin

      Believers have inconsistent cards in their hands that they deal as the facts dictate.

      Card 1. God is sovereign over all nature and controls it
      Card 2. God elects not to intervene to control things in order to give man free will
      Card 3. God is kind and loving and WILL intervene and perform miracles to save people
      Card 4. God will punish sinners
      Card 5. God moves in mysterious ways

      Then, whenever any aspect of a tragedy needs explaining, they just choose their appropriate card and play it.

      For example, "Why did this tornado happen" – Play card 2 or 5

      "Did you hear about the statue (or baby or group of people) who survived" -Play card 1 or 3

      “Why do good things happen to bad people”- Play card 2 or 5

      “The Philippines just legalized [gay marriage/contraception/abortion] – Play card 4

      “Do prayers work?” – Play card 3

      “Why were my prayers ignored” – Play card 2 or 5

      But, then again, blatant internal inconsistency has never been an impediment to a good religion now, has it?

      November 18, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      You seem to be saying, AE, that God has foreordained things (all things?) but has to engineer events to get them to match what was "foreordained". Live4Him has a similar problem with what God knows. She (?) has said that prophecy cannot contain specific information, like dates, that could be used to subvert or interfere with what God knows and reveals through prophecy. I believe you have said that God is outside of time, so that God truly knows what will happen in our future. If God truly knows that something will happen, how can anyone subvert what must happen? If it fails to happen God does not truly know what is in our future. Regarding your version of foreordination, if God must engineer events to match what God knows, where is free will ? If God knows that God will be successful, either freewill has not played a part or else we are free to subvert what God knows and so God does not truly know the future.

      November 18, 2013 at 12:20 pm |
      • Tom, Tom, the Other One

        Sorry, I meant this for Lawrence, not AE.

        November 18, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
      • TDM

        L4H is female.

        November 18, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
        • Live4Him

          @TDM : L4H is female.

          How do you know? Am I a woman who talks like a man or a man who thinks like a woman? 🙂

          November 18, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
        • Fan2C

          You're saying you're a hermaphrodite?

          November 18, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
        • Live4Him

          @Fan2C : You're saying you're a hermaphrodite?

          I'm saying that I'm the only person on this forum who knows me (including gender), so only fools will try to declare they know my gender. This lie was spawned from a poster named Arika who CLAIMED that she could trace my IP address. She declared me a 44-yr old woman in Rochester, NY with a son. As I live in Charlotte, NC, she obviously was lying. Yet, there are those who still repeat that falsified claim. And she has tried it with others, too.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:25 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Charlotte, NC? Home of John Boy and Billy!

          November 19, 2013 at 8:25 am |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Does it really matter what we look like in meat space?
          For 20 years I've filled in the "physical description" fields on various websites and online forums one of two ways:
          "Tall version of Brad Pitt with huge pecs" or "three apples high, blue skin, little white hat".

          November 19, 2013 at 8:33 am |
      • Lawrence of Arabia

        Tom,
        "You seem to be saying that God has foreordained things (all things?) but has to engineer events to get them to match what was "foreordained".

        Well, Scripture says this, not me. The Westminster Confession of Faith puts it eloquently: God, from all eternity, did, by the most wise and holy counsel of His own will, freely, and unchangeably ordain whatsoever comes to pass; yet so, neither is God the author of sin, nor is violence offered to the will of the creatures; nor is the liberty or contingency of secondary causes taken away, but rather established.

        "If God truly knows that something will happen, how can anyone subvert what must happen?"

        They can't. Everyone does what was providentially ordained for them to do.

        "Iif God must engineer events to match what God knows, where is free will?

        By the term: ‘Free Will,’ we men that man’s will is not coerced. Man is not forced by some external force greater than himself to do something he does not want to do. Man is free to do what he wants to do within the limits of his ability… The Bible consistently teaches that 1) that man is free to do good or evil, that he is at liberty to do either, but 2) that he is able to do only evil because of his fallen condition. (Deuteronomy 30:19, John 6:44)

        “…God foreknows nothing by contingency (what is predictable as being possible), but that He foresees, purposes, and does all things according to His immutable, eternal, and infallible will. By this thunderbolt, “free-will” is thrown prostrate, and utterly dashed to pieces. Those who would assert “free-will” must therefore deny that God is sovereign.”
        Martin Luther, The Bondage of the Will

        November 18, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
      • Live4Him

        @Tom, Tom, the Other One : God is outside of time

        Agreed. God created time, so he must be outside of time.

        @Tom, Tom, the Other One : If God truly knows that something will happen, how can anyone subvert what must happen?

        Easy. Don't you watch any time-related movies? If you change one small aspect in time, it changes the future. So, if sees 'event A' happening, which cannot happen if people could avoid it, then it implies that people are not aware of the upcoming event (or don't see the connection with current knowledge). This follows the law on non-contradiction: one cannot avoid future events and have them still happen.

        @Tom, Tom, the Other One : if God must engineer events to match what God knows, where is free will ?

        I'm not speaking for LA, but here is my version of it. Imagine two people, one who has read a story and one who hasn't read it. For the second person, the events unfold spontaneously. However, the first person already knows the ending. Since God is outside of time, he knows both the beginning, the now, and the end – simultaneously.

        November 18, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Lie4Him, What evidence do you have that a god created time? You believe that because it must have happened if your belief is true. But you have no evidence that a god created the universe. Even presuming that a god did create the universe you have no evidence that it was your god, in fact all evidence that we do have points away from a personal god.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:08 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          Be careful that the road you take to avoid your destiny doesn't hasten you to meet it.

          The logic of their God is that he/it is illogical. That is what they mean when they say "God is outside time", they really mean "God is outside logic" which allows them to say anything they want without evidence and then just give their dissenters a big wet raspberry "Ptthhhhhhh!!"

          Atheists on the other hand want to have discussion and debates based on actual verifiable evidence and do not have a problem saying "We don't know" when facts and evidence are currently unavailable to answer certain questions. This is exactly the opposite of the religious zealot who see's the absence of evidence against their invisible deity as proof for it. It's easy to make claims that seem impossible to disprove based on their imagined supernatural qualities. It would be like saying that the ring of power is real from the Lord of the Rings because the wearer is invisible which is why we can't see them to verify that the ring is real... that is religious logic in a nutshell...

          November 18, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          "I'm not speaking for LA, but here is my version of it. Imagine two people, one who has read a story and one who hasn't read it. For the second person, the events unfold spontaneously. However, the first person already knows the ending. Since God is outside of time, he knows both the beginning, the now, and the end – simultaneously."

          Pretty good summary... I once heard Dr. Adrian Rogers put it this way: "God doesn't know the future because He stared down the coridoors of time and knew what was going to happen, God knows the future becuase He wrote the future!"

          November 18, 2013 at 1:19 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          In Santa...
          "Lie4Him, What evidence do you have that a god created time?"

          I'm not speaking for Live4Him, but I had to add this:
          "In the beginning, God..."
          Beginning of what? Time, force, action, space, and matter...

          November 18, 2013 at 1:21 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          LofA, Quoting from your religious text is not evidence, or do you accept quotes from the Yengishiki as evidence that their gods exist and yours do not?

          November 18, 2013 at 1:29 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          "Quoting from your religious text is not evidence"

          Larry uses a combination of not giving a cra p about other nations religions and really really wanting his version to be true to determine which divine account is accurate. The one that puts he and his family at the right hand of God is always the story he likes best...

          November 18, 2013 at 1:52 pm |
        • rab3

          @ In Santa we trust.
          Why is there something rather than nothing.
          1. Reality is an illusion.
          2. Reality is/was self-created.
          3. Reality is self-existent (eternal).
          4. Reality was created by something that is self-existent.
          I will solve it for you. Its the last one. The last 3 fail.

          November 21, 2013 at 6:30 am |
    • Alias

      – after all, doesn’t the potter have the right over the clay to create some vessels for noble use, and some vessels for a common use?

      So this gives god the right to create souls and force them to go to hell forever?

      November 18, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
      • Lawrence of Arabia

        Alias,
        "So this gives god the right to create souls and force them to go to hell forever?"

        This gets into a discussion of Supralapsarianism vs Infralapsarianism, but to give you the reader's digest version, all men are sinners and on their way to hell, but God graciously chose some to save, and offered Himself as a sacrificial payment for their sin debt that they could not pay themselves. The rest He left to the unintended consequences of their willful choices.

        November 18, 2013 at 12:55 pm |
        • sam stone

          "all men are sinners and on their way to hell, "

          more empty proxy threats

          "God graciously chose some to save, and offered Himself as a sacrificial payment for their sin debt that they could not pay themselves. "

          sacrifice? how does an omnipotent being, alive forever, sacrifice himself?

          sin is a man made concept, a guilt trip designed to fool the gullible

          "The rest He left to the unintended consequences of their willful choices."

          if god is omnisicent, there is no free will

          November 19, 2013 at 4:32 am |
        • Hear This

          Lawrence of Arabia,

          We can tell a lot about a person by the way he says his imaginary god behaves... from an almost infinite array of characteristics to fantasize about you pick those that are as ugly as you obviously are.

          November 19, 2013 at 4:59 am |
      • Just the Facts Ma'am...

        "all men are sinners and on their way to hell, but God graciously chose some to save"

        You cannot have God create man and the devil, then have man create sin and the devil create hell and say "God is perfect love who makes no mistakes and it's your own fault if you send your eternal soul to a place of torment that God in no way created except that since he created everything then he did create it and it is his plan since he knows who will go there anyway and even though to never have been born would be preferable to an eternity of suffering, too bad, you have to break some eggs to make a heaven omlet..."

        November 18, 2013 at 1:19 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          In eternity past, God determined to put His attributes on display for the glory of God. In order to display all of His attributes such as Mercy, Grace, and Justice, He had to create a humanity who had the capacity to sin. If that were not so, and all of creation was held captive by the righteousness of God, then God would not be able to demonstrate all of His attributes. So when He created humanity, He gave them a will, whereas that will, when it is not fully captivated by the righteousness of God, will always seek out its own glorification rather than God’s. But by the same token, only with a will that is free can love for God be genuine, for love is not true love if it is forced.

          When the first people sinned, Adam and Eve plunged the entire human race onto the path of destruction, for to willingly choose to disobey God is to instigate unrighteousness, and that is sin. And because Adam was representative of the human race who was to come, his sin, like a disease that is genetically passed from parent to child, infected all of the human race – we all became sinners like our first parents, and therefore, we are all prone to sin.

          Because God is just, and in order to display His perfect justice, He must punish all sin, and there is only one place of punishment for sin – and that is hell. God would be perfectly just in sending all sinners directly to hell for the first minor infraction of His righteousness, but God is also Merciful, and in order to show that, He gives Grace to some.

          In order to demonstrate His mercy, God created a plan where, when His creation would willingly sin against Him, in time, He would send His Son to take the punishment of the ones whom He would choose to relish His mercy upon. And all of those whom He chooses to be saved will come to Him to be saved. This was not for some foreseen quality held somewhere within the individual, for there is no redeeming quality within pitiful sinners, rather, God chose some to save out of His own will and desire, thereby demonstrating His grace upon an elect people.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:25 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          "God determined to put His attributes on display for the glory of God."

          Right, God always existed but at some point he got bored and wanted all his attributes to be on display. He sounds like a high school prom queen, not the embodiment of love.

          "all of creation was held captive by the righteousness of God, then God would not be able to demonstrate all of His attributes."

          I just bought this police uniform and this new shiny gun, I need some people to do some bad things so I can shoot them, otherwise there was no reason for me to buy this outfit! But damn I look good!...

          Your God sounds like a delusional sycophant, which is no wonder when you think about who invented him.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:43 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          The long and short of Larrys agrumment is "God eeded to create man to fail and suffer so he can show how merciful he is. Without a child drowning in the pool, how is the lifeguard suppoed to show everyone how awesome he is? That is one pool I would never take my daughter to and am very thankful it's imaginary, just like someone else you wish you knew.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:48 pm |
        • Sara

          Wow, Just, I read your comment first and thought for sure you were exaggerating or simplifying, but your summary looks dead on. It's not that LoA's description isn't fairly accurate of the ancient god, but I don't know I've ever heard it that clear and up front in recent times.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
        • Fan2C

          @Just the Facts,

          Yes, it's like Munchhausen Syndrome by Proxy. That's where perpetrators are willing to fulfill their need for positive attention by hurting their own child (or other dependent charge), thereby assuming the sick role by proxy. At times, they are also able to assume the hero role and garner still more positive attention, by appearing to care for and save their child.

          November 18, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
        • Sara

          Fan2C,

          I'm thinking more like histrionic disorder, though inDSM-5 it would be a trait specified disorder. Need for drama, attention...

          November 18, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
        • Fan2C

          Sara,

          I hear ya' and agree, but you know, humans do love their drama, and the people who made up these god stories were expert at it. It is only the most intense dramas which survive and get perpetuated. Nobody is going to get too overwhelmed with emotion over a bellybutton-lint god that just sits there (dang, now I've probably gone and offended an Omphaloskepsis adherent somewhere!).

          November 18, 2013 at 2:48 pm |
      • rab3

        Steve Turner’s poem “Creed”:

        “If chance be the Father of all flesh,
        Disaster is his rainbow in the sky,
        And when you hear
        State of Emergency!
        Sniper Kills Ten!
        Troops on Rampage!
        Whites go Looting!
        Bomb Blasts School!
        It is but the sound of man worshiping his maker.”

        November 21, 2013 at 6:31 am |
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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.