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Archbishop: Mexican cartel threatened Catholic seminary
Mexican Archbishop, Norberto Rivera Carrera has called on parishioners to report extortion to authorities.
December 4th, 2013
11:56 AM ET

Archbishop: Mexican cartel threatened Catholic seminary

By Rafael Romo and Catherine E. Shoichet, CNN

(CNN) - The threatening calls reportedly came one after the other to Mexico's main Catholic seminary.

Callers, claiming to be from one of the country's feared drug cartels, offered an ominous warning: Pay up if you value the safety of your priests.

"They called several times. They identified themselves as the Familia Michoacana, but who knows?" Cardinal Norberto Rivera, archbishop of Mexico City, revealed at a Mass this week. "I spoke with the authorities. We made the appropriate report. Because they wanted us to pay. Because if not, they would kill one of us. They wanted to extort 60,000 pesos ($4,600)."

Reports of extortion have become increasingly common as drug cartels expand their reach in Mexico. But public denouncements of such attempts are rare.

FULL STORY
- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Bishops • Catholic Church

soundoff (591 Responses)
  1. Ken Margo

    All they have to do is pray and believe and god will protect them. That's what the priests tell us.

    "Cardinal Norberto Rivera, archbishop of Mexico City, revealed at a Mass this week. "I spoke with the authorities. We made the appropriate report."

    Who could he speak to that has more authority than god? A REPORT. I would think a prayer to god would be more vital than an report.

    December 10, 2013 at 7:55 pm |
  2. A Candid Look

    This is really shocking... I would have thought that most clergy would have gotten it by now.. We have no need of them nor their fairy tail stories. Why does this member of the clergy sound so upset... it is after all what they deserve... for all their transgression against mankind... Right??

    An interesting conversation that took place today about this article... this was the opening statement. Rejoice you have finally put all those religious in their place.... Now all you have to do is to wait for those same people to rise up and eliminate the religious blight against mankind.. Or you can even begin it .. public opinion will support you in that..

    December 5, 2013 at 7:01 pm |
  3. Angelina

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    https://www.facebook.com/RIPNelsonMandela6

    December 5, 2013 at 6:01 pm |
    • Grand

      Weird way to post, but yes, a great man is gone.

      December 5, 2013 at 6:08 pm |
  4. Løki

    Klumpen von Affen poo warf sich an.
    Das ist, alle Menschen sind.
    ...
    Primaten, mit Primaten Reaktionen auf alles.
    ...
    Poo überall.

    December 5, 2013 at 3:43 pm |
  5. Lucifer's Evil Twin

    Now god told the writers of the bible about the dinosaurs; however, they being bronze-age sheep herders... they of course had no idea what dinosaurs were... so the copyright editors of the time decided to cut all mention of dinosaurs (and ice age creatures) from the bible and replaced it instead with ‘hate gays and hate everyone who disagrees with you’...

    December 5, 2013 at 3:40 pm |
  6. Lucifer's Evil Twin

    Things that make you go hmm…

    10,000 years ago he only wiped out the dinosaurs with the asteroid, leaving all of the humans alive... but then they pissed him off 998 years ago, so he killed off all of the humans... (Except Noah's incestuous family)…
    Noah must have been beside himself trying to figure out what kind of food all of those marsupials needed while on his little boat.

    Noah’s family (white of course) bred and repopulated the Earth with Australian Aborigines, Africans, Asians, Polynesians, Native Americans, etc… My they were busy little beavers… (Another critter NOT on the Ark, since they existed only on the, as yet, undiscovered North American continent)

    December 5, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
  7. guest

    Read my reply to: Sara(swati)

    It's a fake.

    December 5, 2013 at 9:09 am | Report abuse | Reply

    December 5, 2013 at 3:35 pm |
  8. Lucifer's Evil Twin

    You're depressed? Pray. Still depressed? You're not praying hard enough. Depressed and suicidal now? Pray harder.
    *BANG* Oh dear, well he was very mentally ill, we will pray for him.

    Seems like a very effective process to me.

    December 5, 2013 at 3:32 pm |
    • Steve brinkman

      And, "He was never a True Christian" anyway, because a True Christian would never commit suicide. When he prayed, he wasn't sincere enough and God hates a false Christian.

      December 7, 2013 at 8:13 pm |
    • mike jones

      You people (e.g. lucy-fur and her sicophant) are experts at setting up straw men and then tearing them down... you must feel rather empty and pathetic to "win" arguments against something that doesn't exist. Surely you could do something more productive with your limited time on this earth.

      December 10, 2013 at 8:45 pm |
  9. BRC

    So here's theoritical theological point. In the course of discussions, when I've brought up that if "God" really wanted people to know he was real, all he has to do is show himself in a manner that would b impossible or a human to do. "God' could clear the whole mess up right now if he wanted to, by simultaneously appearing before and peaking to every human on Earth individually. So, if he really wants us to know him, as many believers claim he does, it's well within his power, and the fact that there are people who don't believe can be laid at "God's" feet.

    The explanation that I have frequently recieved is that, "God" won't blatantly reveal himself because he wants people to come to him through faith. That seems silly and petty to me, but whatever, not my religion. The part I have an issue with si the follow on. there are some who say that "god" wants people to come to him through faith, because if his existence is made fact, then humans will have no free will.

    That simply doesn't make any sense. Even if "God" appears and says "Yo", I'm not jus tgoing to start warshipping him, and I know that MANY other humans would not. It's kind of in our nature to not follow someone until we belive there is somone we should. Sho, revealing his existence beyond shadow of a doubt wouldn't challenge free will, it would in fact allow Humans to exer their will in a fully informed decision.

    Thoughts?

    December 5, 2013 at 1:54 pm |
    • Lawrence of Arabia

      Firstly, God does not perform upon command, so for us to demand that He appear to everyone and say "boo" just isn't going to work.

      Next, your question poses the assumption that God hasn't actually appeared to men. On His own accord, in due time, God did appear to men and brought the message of salvation.

      For reasons that probably will remain a mystery, God has chosen to perform His ministry through a means, and that means that He has chosen is by the preaching of the gospel by men such as myself, Live4Him, Topher, etc...

      Although we perform our duties imperfectly, through the message of the gospel that we speak, you know about God.

      Natural revelation reveals to you that "a" god exists, specific revelation found in the written word of God reveals to you "the" God.

      December 5, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
      • Joey

        Will god hold people like you and Topher responsible for only making me more sure with each post you make that the bible is a lie? It would seem to me that if god wants you to spread the word then he should hold you responsible for being poor messengers.

        December 5, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          God holds teachers to a higher standard, yes. But if we are teaching truth, it isn't US that God will hold accountable, it is you that He will hold accountable for what you did with the knowledge that you had. (regardless of where you got the truth)

          December 5, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
        • Joey

          Yeah I guess it is not your fault that the bible really does make much sense if you actually think about it.

          December 5, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
      • BRC

        Lawrence of Arabia,
        I am not asking "God" to perform, I am putting forth an action that would eliminate all quesion. If "God" exists he is welcome to do whatever he wants, but his methodology for revealing himself is inefficient and ineffective. For a guy who supposedly created an immeasurably large universe in less then a week, he sure is doing a poor job of getting a few billion highly functioning primates to admit his existance.

        Natur reveals to YOU and others with your beliefs that there is a god; I do not agree. Gods are one solution, not the only solution, and from my observations not the most likely. Specific revelation found in written words that men thousands years ago attributed to "God" reveal their version of him. I have observed no reason to trust those words.

        What's more you completely avoided one of the key points. What would be lost if EVERYONE on Earth was tangibly proved that "God" existed. What would be lost that wouldn't be worth the gain?

        December 5, 2013 at 2:19 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          "For a guy who supposedly created an immeasurably large universe in less then a week, he sure is doing a poor job of getting a few billion highly functioning primates to admit his existance"
          ---------
          Unless of course it was God's plan that not everyone be saved. And that's exactly what Romans 9 teaches.

          December 5, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          "What would be lost if EVERYONE on Earth was tangibly proved that "God" existed. What would be lost that wouldn't be worth the gain?"
          -------–
          I suppose the problem with God appearing to all men everywhere is that since He has already condescended to the form of man, if He reveals Himself again in His unmasked brilliance, then anyone who sees Him would be undone. Not killed, not sent to heaven or hell, but undone... Uncreated... For no one can see God and live unless He was not veiled in some way – and He has already done that.

          Furthermore, God has already made His existence known to all men through natural revelation. But Paul tells us that people suppress the truth in unrighteousness. It's not as though men refuse to believe in merely a "creator God," but they refuse to believe in a God to whom they will one day be accountable for every sin they have ever committed.

          December 5, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
        • BRC

          Lawrence of Arabia,
          But there you go conflating knowledge and action again. Just because everyone knows "God" exists doesn't mean everyone would be saved. People would still break the rules, they'd just know for a fact that the rules were real. If, for some reason that goes against the teaching of some denominations, "God" actively WANTS some people to fail, he doesn't need to worry, we will. Revealing his existence wouldn't change that at all. So, bit of a moot point there.

          December 5, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          BRC,
          "Revealing his existence wouldn't change that at all."
          -----------
          All I can tell you is only that which has been told before...

          “…there is no nation so barbarous, no race so brutish, as not to be imbued with the conviction that there is a God. Even those who, in other respects, seem to differ least from the lower animals, constantly retain some sense of religion; so thoroughly has this common conviction possessed the mind, so firmly is it stamped on the bre.asts of all men.”
          > John Calvin, The Inst.itutes of the Christian Religion

          December 5, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
        • BRC

          Lawrence of Arabia
          "I suppose the problem with God appearing to all men everywhere is that since He has already condescended to the form of man, if He reveals Himself again in His unmasked brilliance, then anyone who sees Him would be undone."

          That is an enormous stretch. That's reaching even for theology. Even if there is soem holy scripture somewhere that says that, either it's wrong, or the religion is wrong about "God". If "God" is truly all powerful, then there are no limitations to what he can do. "God" could appear in his true for and lick your ear if the though ammused him. That's what omnipotence is, the infinite and unimaginable become possible, so to say that a being that can do whatever it wants and has the ultimate power over the universe can appear as a safe aparition infront of the people it created is A very weak arfument.

          Paul is a person, and not a particularly trust worthy one. HE changed his name and faith when he saw an opportunity and turned on his own people. There is absolutely no reason to trust or believe anything that he said or that is attributed to him. And again, "God" can do what he wants, he could fmake the memory stick if he wanted to.

          December 5, 2013 at 2:51 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          "That's what omnipotence is"
          -------
          No, your definition is wrong. Being omnipotent means that God can do whatever CAN be done... That rules out those foolish kindergarten questions like "can God make a rock so big that He can't lift it?" If you believed that omnipotent means that God can do ANYTHING, then by that definition, God can sin. Which He can't.

          December 5, 2013 at 3:07 pm |
        • Madtown

          Unless of course it was God's plan that not everyone be saved.
          -----
          So God would create human life, with the full intent that these lives would not be offered salvation? And, through no fault of those humans? I'd almost describe that as sinful behavior. Maybe God can sin?

          December 5, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
        • Ken

          Again, why wouldn't God want to save everyone? Does he have a limited amount of love to give? Aren't there enough rooms in heaven?

          December 5, 2013 at 8:20 pm |
        • Anthony

          Lawrence of Arabia – "Unless of course it was God's plan that not everyone be saved. And that's exactly what Romans 9 teaches."

          Wow, so it's been his PLAN that mult.itudes of his created creatures will suffer eternal torment? What a demented freak you worship!

          December 6, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
        • sam stone

          Anthony: It is more than a demented freak, it is a vindictive, petty pr1ck that larry of arabia and robert brown and topher/gopher worship. But, they are too busy groveling to see it. Good for them.

          December 7, 2013 at 8:32 am |
      • Ken

        LofA
        "Firstly, God does not perform upon command"
        Reminds me of the old Loony Tunes Singing Frog cartoon. Drove the guy crazy that he wouldn't perform in from of anyone else. So, you're saying that your God is like that, eh?

        I couldn't find the whole video, but this ought to jog your memory.
        [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bkjsN-J27aU&w=640&h=360]

        December 5, 2013 at 5:52 pm |
    • Some Antics

      True, knowing for a fact that there is a creator would not take away any free will and thus should not be a deterant for said creator to stay hidden. This seems like more of a game of hide and seek mixxed with musical chairs where the humans are told to seek which when they do they invariably find something someone tells them is God, so they pick that chair and hope when the music stops that they picked the right one. The problem is that there are thousands and thousands of chairs out there, 42,000 of them Christian denominations, and every one is screaming "Sit on me! I'm the right chair!" and not a single one has any evidence they are right. Most people find themselves picking the same chairs as their parents or peers, others seek out new chairs that seem to fit them better. But in the end all this chair picking just serves to divide humanity into conflicting groups, set's father against son, mother against daughter and adds more fuel to the already raging fire of human competltion instead of uniting humanity for our mutual benefit and survival. So the long and short of it is, religion is a sick game that ruins lives and is tearing down mankind while it put's on a pretty face of soup kitchens and food drives.

      December 5, 2013 at 2:14 pm |
    • Lawrence of Arabia

      "Sho, revealing his existence beyond shadow of a doubt wouldn't challenge free will, it would in fact allow Humans to exer their will in a fully informed decision."
      ----------
      Yep... How about some Eschatology? That is exactly why after the Millenium, Satan will be released for a short time. He will gather together for himself all of those born into the Millenium who do not wish to follow Christ for one last rebellion which will be crushed.

      December 5, 2013 at 2:18 pm |
      • BRC

        Lawrence of Arabia,
        Ah, and I'm going to guess we don't knwo which millenium that's discussing (there have been a couple since they said it was going to happen). And really, isn't that kind of awful. It is confusing that a benevolent god, who loves all of his creations, decides to do the big reveal in an act of violence and suffering, instead of one of peaceful information. Why would any all powerful being make that choice?

        December 5, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Actually, just the opposite, the Bible is pretty specific as to WHAT millenium is being referred to, but we don't know WHEN that millenium will be, other than it is after the church age. The eschatological millenium will begin 7 1/2 years after the rapture... But why get any deeper into end-times theology? Don't you have problems with the first 4 words of the Bible?

          December 5, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
      • Ken

        Lawrence
        Why would God allow Satan to be let loose? It's like your governor saying "Hey, lets let out our worst mass-murderer just to see how well prepared our citizens are."

        December 5, 2013 at 8:24 pm |
    • AE

      “A God who let us prove his existence would be an idol”
      ― Dietrich Bonhoeffer

      December 5, 2013 at 2:18 pm |
      • Ken

        So, all those pagan idols actually proved their existence to people? That's a couple of thousand proven gods vs your one unproven god then.

        December 5, 2013 at 5:56 pm |
      • sam stone

        A god that would create people, knowing that they will be tortured forever is a punk

        December 7, 2013 at 8:36 am |
    • Live4Him

      @BRC : "God' could clear the whole mess up right now if he wanted to, by simultaneously appearing

      This contradicts scripture. By clearing up the 'whole mess', he would eliminate any need for faith / trust.

      Hebrews 11:6 And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.

      @BRC : there are some who say that "god" wants people to come to him through faith, because if his existence is made fact, then humans will have no free will.

      This is not my posit, so let me give you my view on this. For the sake of simplicity, I'm going to use sin and selfishness interchangeably.

      Lets assume that someone is the most selfish person in the world and God has revealed himself to that person (among others). It is now beyond any doubt that God is omnipotent and omniscient. Furthermore, it is beyond doubt that those who reject him will go to hell. So, how can this person make a selfless decision when the outcome is known? He/she cannot. Thus, if this person is allowed into heaven, he/she will bring sin into heaven (which cannot be allowed).

      By this example, it is clear that only by have some margin to doubt that one can make a sinless decision to follow Christ.

      December 5, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
      • BRC

        Live4HIm,
        Your argument doesn't make any sense, and is predicated on the principle that humans can fool "God". KNowledge does not negate will. I know that ice cream is not really ehalthy for em, but I still eat it in moderation because I enjoy it. I know that I will have to work out mor to make up for it, and that if I really wanted to be healthier I wouldn't eat it at all. If a person really really wants to "sin", they will. Knowing "god" is real won't stop them. BUT, the scenario I think your describing where someone somehow leads a righteous life all the while thinking "AHAHAHA I'm gonna get past the gates and then just do whatever I want, cant' kick me out once I'm in" (there was a much funnier rant for that in my head but the word filter is oppressive) isn't going to happen, because if "God" is omniscient, there can be no false repentense. If you truly have a will to do evil, "God" shoudl know, adn he can act accordingly. But, who knows, maybe finding out that "God" truly was real would actually change some people's hearts and make them be better. bet it works better than some human telling them there is a "God".

        December 5, 2013 at 2:38 pm |
        • Live4Him

          @BRC : Your argument doesn't make any sense, and is predicated on the principle that humans can fool "God".

          No, it is not. If I was in a burning building and a fireman came to show me the way out, I'd follow him. I'm not fooling the fireman, but will really follow him until I'm safe. Its in my best interest to do so.

          @BRC : I know that I will have to work out mor to make up for it, and that if I really wanted to be healthier I wouldn't eat it at all.

          You are only unhealthy when you consume more calories than you burn. So, the ice cream isn't unhealthy, but your input to output ratio.

          @BRC : If a person really really wants to "sin", they will. Knowing "god" is real won't stop them.

          Exactly my point. Only those without sin can enter into heaven. Only those with a proclivity toward selflessness will follow Christ without being certain of the outcome, but one certain of the outcome will do whatever is necessary if the stakes are high enough.

          @BRC : If you truly have a will to do evil, "God" shoudl know, adn he can act accordingly.

          How many of us will run a stop sign with a cop in the next lane? Few to none. How many of us will run it when we think no one is around? The same is true of God – when he "doesn't exist" we're free to act upon our impulses.

          December 5, 2013 at 2:54 pm |
    • Alias

      DOn't forget that god spoke to Adam, and Adam still sinned.
      Also, I assume all of Noas' family believed in the jewish god, but look at all the religions that sprung up since then.
      I think you should think through your assumtions about what everyone would do.

      December 5, 2013 at 2:49 pm |
    • Steve brinkman

      In the OT God was appearing right and left. I've always been fascinated in the Jews' repeated backsliding. God PARTS THE SEA in front of thir eyes and demolishing the Egyptian army. Now, I'd like to think that if I'd have seen that, case closed. I'd be a believer, and you wouldn't have to show me twice. But the Jews see this and backslide, and God miracles them again, and they backslide, back and forth. I could have a VERY long discussion about this but we'd be here all night. Ain't no god.

      December 7, 2013 at 8:18 pm |
  10. Live4Him

    @Some Antics : Don't forget all those people eaten by dragons

    Which are now called dinosaurs!

    December 5, 2013 at 1:15 pm |
    • I'm going to act disingenuous

      Glad that you admit people and dinosaurs existed together.

      December 5, 2013 at 1:19 pm |
      • Lawrence of Arabia

        According to the publication New Scientist, February 24, 2001, p. 13, researchers found several types of dinosaurs, and were surprised to find frog, fish, turtle, small mammal, and plant fossils as well. But according to evolutionary thinking, mammals should not be found with dinosaurs because they were supposed to have “evolved” after dinosaurs.

        December 5, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
        • Some Antics

          Again Larry displays the giant gap in his education.

          Mesozoic synapsids that had evolved to the point of having a jaw joint composed of the dentary and squamosal bones are preserved in few good fossils, mainly because they were mostly smaller than rats: In the past 40 years, however, the number of Mesozoic fossil mammals has increased decisively; only 116 genera were known in 1979, for example, but about 310 in 2007, with an increase in quality such that "at least 18 Mesozoic mammals are represented by nearly complete skeletons.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:42 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          I forgot where I found this quote, but the facts in it are verifyable:
          "After the close of the Old Testament , flying reptiles were mentioned by Aristotle, Josephus and Herodotus. The first century naturalist, Pliny, wrote about animals bigger than elephants living in India. When the Spaniards arrived in South America in the 1500's they found that the Inca Indians had carvings of what we clearly know today as dinosaurs, but these carvings were done at least 300 years before modern paleontologists described them from the fossil evidence. Accounts of dragons and flying reptiles are found in the literature of Persia, Scandinavia and England from the third to the 16th century A. D."

          December 5, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
        • Charm Quark

          LofA
          So what does that prove other than fiction was a viable writing form for a very long time. See Homer or the Theogony for just two examples.

          December 5, 2013 at 2:05 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Charm Quark,
          So Aristotle, Josephus, Herodotus, and Pliny were fiction writers?

          December 5, 2013 at 2:09 pm |
        • Charm Quark

          LofA
          Josephus wrote about Hercules, Herodotus ramblings were mainly based on hearsay, and Pliny fabricated a pile of crap about his relationship with T!tus, yes fiction writers. You have to believe in other gods if you believe these guys were writing the "truth".

          December 5, 2013 at 2:24 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Charm Quark,
          So, your reasoning is since they wrote some fiction, that EVERYTHING they wrote was fiction? Hmmm, let's apply that to everyone who ever wrote fiction and see where that leads us...

          December 5, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
        • Alias

          I like that reasoning.
          Moses wrote some interesting stuff, so .....

          December 5, 2013 at 2:54 pm |
        • HotAirAce

          It took less than 10 seconds to find Larry's quote. it's from an article called "The existence of fire breathing dragons" which can be found at http://www.creationworldview.org/articles_view.asp?id=50. Now there's a reputable source for scientific evidence.

          Interesting that he left off the last sentence: "The most famous of these references being St. George and the Dragon." I guess that bit of mythology doesn't fit with his argument here.

          December 5, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
        • Charm Quark

          LofA
          It leads the likes of you and your ilk to believe that the man written bible full of the supernatural and myth is some how the words of your mythical god. Replicate some of those "miracles" in the real world and maybe, just maybe, you would provide some evidence for some god, any god.

          December 5, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
        • Joey

          It is safe to assume that anytime a creationist tries to use science to back up their point that they don't know what they are talking about and are most likely misrepresenting the actual science because they don't actually have any science to back up their views. If they did they would focus on proving creationism to be true instead of just trying to poke holes in evolution.

          December 5, 2013 at 3:14 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Hot Air Ace,
          Cool, thanks for finding the article. I only had a snippet of the thing at my disposal when I quoted it. I think the issue is that you don't believe that they were actual animals simply because they're not alive now, and the fact that they are mentioned in many tales across the globe. Obviously, many of those tales are fiction, but then people are mentioned in those tales too.

          Look, all I'm saying is that from the fraction of animals that have made it into the fossil record that we now have we've got no way of knowing if these animals did or didn't exist. If they didn't exist, then how come they are depicted across almost every culture across the planet, many of whom never encountered one another?

          December 5, 2013 at 3:17 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Joey,
          It is safe to assume that anytime an evolutionist tries to use religion to back up their point that they don't know what they are talking about and are most likely misrepresenting the actual religion because they don't actually have any serious study to back up their views.

          See? It works both ways...

          December 5, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
        • HotAirAce

          You assume too much. I never commented on what I believe about animals not present today. In general, I trust bona fide scientists (those who use the scientific method and publish their findings in reputable journals) over those whose mission appears to be primarily to bolster The Babble and other unfounded god delusions. That being said, if you can point me to scholarly articles published in reputable scientific journals that successfully support your view (which I will summarize as "because The Babble says so" or "some god did it"), I will read them.

          December 5, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
        • Joey

          It actually doesn't work both ways.

          December 5, 2013 at 3:44 pm |
        • Ken

          Lawrence of Arabia
          "When the Spaniards arrived in South America in the 1500's they found that the Inca Indians had carvings of what we clearly know today as dinosaurs,"

          Now, do the Ancient Aliens theory that goes along with those same carvings!

          December 5, 2013 at 5:59 pm |
        • Ken

          Lawrence
          There's a huge difference between small mammals and people. Remember that modern evolution theory traces our common ancestor with other mammals to a small species that lived long before all of us. So, it's perfectly OK for small mammals to be hiding in the underbrush, stealing the dino's eggs, and gnawing on their bones after the astroid strike.

          December 5, 2013 at 8:35 pm |
        • Steve brinkman

          Oh stop. There is zero evidence to support your theory. Know-nothing Christians try to pul a magic rabbit out of a hat with some argle-bargle starting with "The fossil records say....". NO they do not. Let's see you talk about the fossil records for the Unicorns the Bible talks about, or the giants, or people living to be 900 years old, or the nonexistent flood, or the flat earth, magical burning bushes, or the fact that not so much as a broken piece of pottery has been found from the alleged 40 years of wandering in the desert by 1,500,000 people (including women and chuldren), and on and on and on. Even the most eminent of your Biblical scholars doubt the existence of Moses or the stroll in the desert.

          December 7, 2013 at 8:25 pm |
    • Lawrence of Arabia

      Yep, and don't you think it's cool how scientists have found both human and dinosaur bones lying together in the same sedimentary layers? Like the human vertebrae that were found in “cretaceous” sediment in the Ocucaja Desert in Ica Peru. As well as the human bones found in 1971 in the same "cretaceous" layers as many other dinosaur fossils in the Keystone Azurite Mine near Moab, Utah.

      December 5, 2013 at 1:22 pm |
      • Live4Him

        No! That can't be – it must be creationists nonsense 😉

        December 5, 2013 at 1:26 pm |
        • Joey

          I don't know about nonsense but it is certainly just another case of creationists misrepresenting the science.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:38 pm |
        • Some Antics

          Finally something I can agree with L4H on.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:38 pm |
      • BRC

        "The Moab Man (also called "Malachite man") is a find of several human skeletons found after bulldozing in a mine whose rock dated to the Early Cretaceous period, about 140 Ma. The original discovery of two individuals was made in 1971 by Lin Ottinger in the Keystone Azurite Mine near Moab, Utah and has been used by creationists as an argument for humans coexisting with dinosaurs. John Marwitt, an archaeologist and the Field Director for the Utah Archaeological Survey, examined the fossils and concluded that the fossils were probably only hundreds of years old, the result of burials of Native Americans.
        Later examination of the "Moab Man" skeletons indicate that they are unfossilized remains that were subject to an intrusive burial, and have been carbon dated to between 210 and 1450 years old (Berger and Protsch, 1989; Coulam and Schroedl, 1995)"

        That's just a quick pull form wikipedia because it summarizes the issue well, it only takes a few minutes to find additonal sites supporting the finding that they are modern era bones.

        December 5, 2013 at 1:37 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Then be sure to quote the important parts of the article!

          "No obvious tools or artifacts were found associated with the bones, and the bulldozer driver who uncovered the first bones in 1971 expressed certainty that there were no tunnels or cracks in the extremely hard overlying layers of rock. This couldn’t be an ancient burial site, since the limestone rock is so hard that even modern bulldozers have trouble getting through it, and for the same reason, it could never have been a mine."

          December 5, 2013 at 1:40 pm |
        • Some Antics

          Let's just leave this debate where it is, Larry will never accept any evidence contrary to his magic man in the sky theory and will never believe in an ancient earth where life evolved over millions of years regardless of the evidence to supprt it for one reason and one reason only, he doesn't want to believe it. His handle should be "River in Egypt" he is so steeped in denial...

          December 5, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          I thought that it was the understanding of scientists to date a fossil specimen based on the sedimentary layer it was found in? If no evidence can be found of the human skeletons being somehow placed 58 feet into sandstone / limestone so hard that modern equipment has trouble getting into, then don't you ASSUME that the bones are genuenely that old? Or do you ASSUME that the bones HAD to be placed there becuase they COULDN'T be that old? Or do you start rethinking your assumptions and go where the evidence leads?

          December 5, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
        • BRC

          Lawrence of Arabia,
          Ageof the sedimentary layer is one method, but radiometric dating is another much more accurate method. So when the specified testing says that the bones are at most around a dozen centuries old, then the fact that they were digging near old mining areas that likely tapped into natural cave/cavern systems that can and do change shape makes reasonable sense to me.

          December 5, 2013 at 2:02 pm |
        • Ken

          BRC
          Problem is, any creationist would just cling to that claim and never dare to fact check it. They, like all Christians, tend to take a lot of things at face value.

          December 5, 2013 at 6:03 pm |
      • Some Antics

        It should be noted that not all people who believe in human-dinosaur coexistence are necessarily creationists, but simply ignorant and believed what they saw on The Flintstones. The cure for this is simple: education

        The original discovery of two individuals was made in 1971 by Lin Ottinger in the Keystone Azurite Mine near Moab, Utah and has been used by creationists as an argument for humans coexisting with dinosaurs. John Marwitt, an archaeologist and the Field Director for the Utah Archaeological Survey, examined the fossils and concluded that the fossils were probably only hundreds of years old, the result of burials of Native Americans. Later examination of the "Moab Man" skeletons indicate that they are unfossilized remains that were subject to an intrusive burial, and have been carbon dated to between 210 and 1450 years old (Berger and Protsch, 1989; Coulam and Schroedl, 1995)

        December 5, 2013 at 1:37 pm |
        • I'm going to act disingenuous

          I don't believe it at all. I just like to get a rise outta people. Hence, my handle.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:50 pm |
        • Ken

          And creationists have a cure for education; it's called either "home schooling" or "Texas curriculum textbook".

          December 5, 2013 at 6:04 pm |
    • Colin

      Are you seriously contending that the reference to "dragons" i nthe bible is a reference to dinosaurs?

      December 5, 2013 at 1:24 pm |
      • Lawrence of Arabia

        I'm not intending to answer for Live4Him here, but we don't know that the word "dragon" is intended to be a word for all "dinosaurs," but by the same token, before the 19th century, they referred to "dinosaurs" as "animals."

        December 5, 2013 at 1:27 pm |
        • Live4Him

          @Lawrence of Arabia : we don't know that the word "dragon" is intended to be a word for all "dinosaurs,"

          Good point. Not all dragons mentioned in lores will be called dinosaurs. Some would be called plesiosaur or pterosaur. But in general, I'm using the term dinosaur to cover all of the ancient and extinct animals.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:47 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          I understand. It's back to the "calling a bat a bird thing." The language was general in nature when it came to animal classification.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:51 pm |
        • Some Antics

          So how do we know that the word "God" or "Elohim" didn't mean "Sun" and really all hebrews were Sun worshipers? How do we know the word "Christ" meant messiah in ancient Greek? Maybe it meant Prostltute? Maybe the word behemoth in Psalms was talking about King Davids mother in law, I mean, we just don't know, right LoA?

          December 5, 2013 at 1:52 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Some Antics,
          "I mean, we just don't know, right LoA?"
          ----------
          Actually, we do know. Words have meaning, and a student of textual criticism (even an elementary student at that) can easily track the use of language over the years to see what was intended by thus and such a word.

          If one is to use your logic though, then how can ANY text be trusted? Even the roadsign at the end of your street that says STOP. Do you think it actually means GO?

          December 5, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          They were not given that name until 1841 and had only been discovered and recognized as something new just before that, so I doubt that they were the object of any biblical reference.
          Whereas maps used to mark unexplored with "Here be dragons"; dragons are also in other myths such as George and the dragon. No prior mention of dinosaurs though.

          December 5, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
        • Ken

          Lawrence of Arabia
          What's wrong with sometimes referring to all creatures in the Animal Kingdom as "animals"? It's actually less accurate to just refer to mammals as animals, isn't it?

          December 5, 2013 at 6:07 pm |
      • Live4Him

        @Colin : Are you seriously contending that the reference to "dragons" i nthe bible is a reference to dinosaurs?

        Absolutely. There is plenty of evidence outside of the Bible of dinosaurs in ancient societies art. If you want some hard evidence, check out the book / movie "Dragons Or Dinosaurs: Creation Or Evolution". Ignore the pitch and focus on the empirical evidence.

        December 5, 2013 at 1:44 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Dinosaurs had been extinct for millions of years before humans appeared; in fact it was the extinction of the dinosaurs that allowed mammals to flourish eventually leading to apes and then humans, so clearly the bible writers would not know of dinosaurs (as I put in the other post – they were unnamed until 1841 and unknown until shortly before that).
          Despite what the creationist museums show – humans and dinosaurs were never alive at the same time.

          December 5, 2013 at 2:40 pm |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          "empirical evidence"?? HA! A creationist wouldn't know what that was even if a T-Rex actually stepped on 'em...

          December 5, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
  11. Dyslexic doG

    I find it very reassuring that Santa is out there and brings me presents every year. The way he says "ho, ho, ho" is timeless and fills me with joy. The way he gave Rudolph a chance to shine fills me with hope. It is a message to all people, and I don't think we would have morals without that message. I have read many books that talk about Santa being a happy, jolly fellow and it all has to be true because it's in a book.

    December 5, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      Rudolph was added in the 50's to increase marketing... So, kind of like a New Testament to the original Santa stories...

      December 5, 2013 at 2:43 pm |
  12. Colin

    It is absolutely amazing to me to watch grown adults debate issues about Adam and Eve. I have to ask, when you studied middle and high school science, what did they teach you about basic astronomy, biology, geology and natural history. I ask because I am truly curious. I mean, even if you only did the history of the Amero-Indians, you would had to have learned about their origins in Asia more than 14,000 years ago, no?

    December 5, 2013 at 12:20 pm |
    • Alias

      Because school isn't the only place we learned things.

      December 5, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        you learned about santa claus and the easter bunny and the tooth fairy and you read books about unicorns and elves and fairies and goblins and the moon being made of green cheese ...

        learn to tell the difference between reality and infantile fantasy

        December 5, 2013 at 12:45 pm |
        • Alias

          Good job!
          Way to make a lot of assumptions and insult a stranger.

          I'm atheist. I just responded ot a post by pointing out that many children are taught in sunday school, or attend religious schools, or their parents tell them stories about god.
          Do I really need to break it all down so simply for you? Or are you just waiting for any opportunity to attack?

          December 5, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
        • Shut up

          Your stupid theory that religious belief is the same as belief in Santa/Fairy Tales/Unicorns, etc is getting tired.

          Love,
          A fellow atheist.

          December 5, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          neither of you are atheists. take your lies somewhere else, they are not fooling anyone.

          December 5, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
        • igaftr

          shut up
          A belief in god IS the same as a belief in Santa Claus until someone can show any evidence there is a god.
          At least we know Santa was based on a real person.

          December 5, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          "Shut Up,"
          But unicorns DO exist, and guess what? YOU believe in them!

          The Hebrew word re'em is mentioned eight times in the Bible, and signifies some kind of horned animal that could possibly be the now extinct aurochs – a wild ox related to a cow. In the Latin Vulgate however, the translators used the words “unicornis, unicornium, rinocerota, rinocerotis, and rinoceros” whose English rendering in the KJV is “unicorn” for the name of this horned animal each time it occurred: Job 39:9-10, Numbers 23:22, 24:8, Psalm 22:22, 29:6, 92:10, Deuteronomy 33:17, and Isaiah 34:7. Depending upon the context of the passage however, the authors either use the word “rhinoceros” if the intent was to speak of two horns, or “unicornis” if the intent was to mean a singular horn. In Noah Webster’s 1828 dictionary, the word “unicorn” has this as its entry: “An animal with one horn: the monoceros. This name is often applied to the rhinoceros.” It goes on to say under the entry for “rhinoceros” that: “a genus of quadrupeds of two species, one of which, the unicorn, has a single horn growing almost erect from the nose. This animal when full grown, is said to be 12 feet in length. There is another species with two horns, the bicornis. They are natives of Asia and Africa.” Even today, the scientific name for the Asian one-horned rhinoceros is “Rhinoceros unicornis,” (the same word as mentioned in the Latin Vulgate) while the two-horned black rhinoceros is the “Diceros bicornis.”

          December 5, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
        • Some Antics

          I think what Larry is saying is that we all believe in the Giant Purple People Eater, we just call it a Hippopotamus. I mean, its large, it has skin that in certain light can seem purple and there are hundreds of attacks on people each year, though there are no records of any humans actually being eaten, but many die, so, you know, you all believe in a Giant Purple People Eater...

          December 5, 2013 at 12:59 pm |
        • dupid dog

          you are not a real atheist.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          Science is dumb. It classifies animals that are warm-blooded, and have fur, and their babies are born alive, and a baby lives on its mother’s milk, as mammals. Bats do all those things, but bats are clearly birds as the bible instructs us. The bible is never wrong.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:01 pm |
        • Some Antics

          Don't forget all those people eaten by dragons, you know, those green scaled, sharp toothed reptiles that frequent some rivers and streams and will snap their jaws on anything they think they can eat...

          December 5, 2013 at 1:01 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Dyslexic Dog,
          Uh huh, and what is the ancient Hebrew word for "bat?"

          December 5, 2013 at 1:03 pm |
        • Huh??

          Bird, apparently.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:10 pm |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          The point is that they weren't into naturalism to the point that they had a vigorous classification system like we do now. Because that point is important to you, doesn't mean that it concerns the rest of the world. It's not "wrong" to call a bat a bird if your only classification is that the bugger can fly.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
        • I'm going to act disingenuous

          Did they call butterflies birds?

          December 5, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
        • I'm going to act disingenuous

          And you just admitted that MEN write the Bible, LoA.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:18 pm |
        • Alias

          Actually LoA has a point, and it may be reasonable to think that a word intended to mean Rhino was eventually turned into the word 'unicorn'. However, it is still a mistake to make that translation and therefore an error in the bible.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:22 pm |
        • Some Antics

          The designer of these animals would certainly know the difference, so either he lied to man while giving his divine inspiration or the bible isn't really divinely inspired.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:23 pm |
        • Check

          Lawrence,

          Is it wrong to say that the LORD told you that:

          You treat and 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 sufferer with the blood. –Leviticus 14

          Moses (or some other high muckety-muck) said this, along with a bunch of other nonsense that this LORD purportedly SPOKE.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:29 pm |
        • Joey

          I have to agree that if god wrote the bible through people that bats would not be described as birds because god would know that.

          December 5, 2013 at 2:09 pm |
        • Ken

          Lawrence of Arabia
          So, basically, all your posts here are detailing just how little the Bible writers knew about anything, and just how mistranslated the Bible actually is? Remind me again, which side are you on?

          December 5, 2013 at 6:11 pm |
        • Anthony

          Ken – Well said.

          December 6, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
    • Arnold

      I’m not saying it definitely happened but isn’t it possible that all of humanity, after evolution, came from two people?

      December 5, 2013 at 1:09 pm |
      • Some Antics

        Or maybe one person who had a lot of time on his "hands" and was floating on a river of lubriderm?

        December 5, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
        • Arnold

          Again, I’m not saying you’re wrong but can you provide a link for that. The information that I found did say it was unlikely but I never read it was impossible.

          I’m not saying that God created us as is or that the earth is 6k years old but couldn’t we be created from two first humans.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:16 pm |
        • Arnold

          That was supposed to be a reply to Dyslexic Dog.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        genetically proven to be not possible.

        December 5, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
    • Live4Him

      @Colin : I have to ask, when you studied middle and high school science, what did they teach you about basic astronomy, biology, geology and natural history.

      I'm going to assume that you're being honestly curious here, instead of derogitory. If you assume that your opponent is as least equally educated as yourself, then you must conclude that they know something that you don't and have considered the implications.

      @Colin : I mean, even if you only did the history of the Amero-Indians, you would had to have learned about their origins in Asia more than 14,000 years ago, no?

      Now, lets apply some critical thinking skills here. No one alive today was alive 14,000 years ago, so we don't know for certain that these Indians were alive then either. Unless – we have written documents that place them to a date that can be associated with today's calendar.

      So, this date (14,000 years ago) is predicated upon some other assumption(s). Generally, people think that either geology or radiometric dating can yield objective dates. Nothing can be further from the truth. Geology can only determine the ORDER of when the fossils were laid down. It ASSUMES that there are differences in dates, but as we see with the Mt St Helens eruption, sometimes 20 feet of different strata layers can be laid down from a single event. All of the artifacts in the various strata layers (or fossils, if you prefer) all co-existed. Likewise, radiometric dating is equally subjective. It frequently results in excuses like 'extraneous argon', 'carbon sink' and similar excuses for errors in radiometric dates.

      So, my point is this: the basic sciences only give you an overview, but the devil is in the details. We cannot prove that these Indians existed 14,000 years ago.

      December 5, 2013 at 1:14 pm |
      • Joey

        OMG. So stupid.

        December 5, 2013 at 1:26 pm |
      • Doc Vestibule

        Geochronology as an advanced science has advanced a great deal in the last few decades.
        Beyond carbon dating, scientists measure the age of the Earth by examining Cosmogenic Nuclides, optically stimulated luminescence, cathodoluminescence, thermoluminescence, dendrochronology, Ice Cores, lichenometry, varves, magnetostratigraphy, and tephrochronology.
        Multiple, independently applied and examined dating methods come to the same result – that the Earth is vastly older than 6,000 years.

        December 5, 2013 at 1:45 pm |
        • Live4Him

          And all subject to intrepretation – which imples subjectivity.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:51 pm |
        • I'm going to act disingenuous

          So is the Bible. And therein lies the conundrum, no matter how you try to argue it otherwise.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:57 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          "1 apple plus 1 apple equals two apples"
          The definition of 'apple' is subjective, therefore the math is wrong?
          It could be a crab apple or a granny smith or a golden delicious....

          December 5, 2013 at 2:24 pm |
  13. Apple Man

    Deep down within me I discovered a desire for God and I ceased to be an atheist.

    December 5, 2013 at 12:00 pm |
    • Colin

      And I discovered a desire for Elizabeth Hurley, it didn't stop me being single.

      December 5, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
      • Apple Man

        As an atheist I knew a way to live that showed respect to other people and kept me humble, it didn't stop me from being the walking definition of arrogance and intolerance (like you!).

        December 5, 2013 at 12:24 pm |
        • Colin

          So, as an atheist, you were arrogant and obnoxious, found God within and became humble and respectful, hey? Most people I know who "found God" as adults did so after drug, alcohol or other personal problems.

          December 5, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          go peddle your lies somewhere else.

          December 5, 2013 at 12:30 pm |
        • Apple Man

          No, I realized every time I called someone I disliked "pathetic" it was actually myself that I was viewing as "pathetic". Pretty simple.

          December 5, 2013 at 12:36 pm |
        • Some Antics

          Apple Man is clearly just another Christian apologist taking liberties with the truth as they so often do.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:07 pm |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          Liar

          December 5, 2013 at 2:48 pm |
        • CharlesP

          Apple Man
          Would find it better if we just called theist arguments for their God "pathetic", because they are, you know?

          December 5, 2013 at 7:34 pm |
    • Alias

      Deep down I have a desire for money, but that doesn't make me rich.
      Your desire does not make god real either.

      December 5, 2013 at 12:43 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        truth.

        December 5, 2013 at 12:46 pm |
      • Apple Man

        God and money actually exist. Yes. Deep down we all know that.

        December 5, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
        • And all the well to do white atheist men said:

          Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it.
          Please

          December 5, 2013 at 12:54 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          feeble.

          December 5, 2013 at 12:55 pm |
        • Huh??

          All atheists are white men?

          Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it. Prove it.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:08 pm |
        • Alias

          Okay, I assume you are a believer in the biblical god.
          According to the bible, god created billions and billions of starts, heaven and hell because he wanted a garden with 1 pet that looked like him. He later made a vagina to keep his pet happy. He also put a tree in this garden just to tempt his pet. When the talking serpent that god allowed into the garden convinced the wonam to eat from the forbidden tree, it was still cool, but when the Adam bit the fruit, god cursed him and every person who had not even been born yet.
          This proves that god knew what he was doing when he had the forsight to make hell.
          However, god didn't want to send us all to hell. So the ONLY option available to the all powerful creator of the universe (the bible clearly says this is what he had to do) was to get a married virgin pregnant and torture the child to death.
          This was the only way god could judge us the way he wanted to when we die.

          No, I don't believe it.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:18 pm |
        • Lisa

          And all the well to do white atheist men said:

          Do you accept everything without proof?

          Hey, everyone, this fine gentleman is in the market for the Brooklyn Bridge. Who had the deed to sell him?

          December 5, 2013 at 1:36 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      Apple Man
      Deep down within me I discovered a desire for God and I ceased to be an atheist.

      unfortunately AM, that was just gas deep down within you. stop eating so much fiber and try and get a grip on reality.

      December 5, 2013 at 1:03 pm |
    • Ken

      Apple Man
      Does your desire for God actually prove his existence, or just your willingness to believe the claims that he does?

      December 5, 2013 at 6:16 pm |
  14. truthprevails1

    If apes just ate more carbohydrates, they'd be people. Humans' brains grew very large because our intake of carbs increased.

    December 5, 2013 at 11:59 am |
    • Dwight

      If onlys and justs were candies and nuts, then everyday would be un de donkfest!

      December 5, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
    • SkepticAl

      It is true. We had this ape at the zoo that ate a high carb diet and it turned into a human being. The zoo had to let it free.

      December 5, 2013 at 12:06 pm |
      • SkepticAl

        once free i went to the library which is how i came to be posting here today

        December 5, 2013 at 4:32 pm |
    • Lynda

      I would like to point out that incenturies past, when government and church were entertwined, the christians openly made people eat low-carb diets, which prevented atheism from flourshing.
      I see no reason to believe the eating habits of the church has changed.

      December 5, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
    • igaftr

      I know you are just a name theif but in actuallity, it is a genetic defect that all humans have that allowed our brains to grow as large as they have. Our jaw muscles are extremely weak compared to any other animal. It is a defective gene that causes this. AN odd side effect is far less pressure generated by those muscles, which anchor on the top of the head. Since our muscles are so much weaker the brain can grow into a larger area, and the brain cavity in you head is larger.

      The weakened jaw muscles, cause far less forces on the cranium, allowing for increase cranium size, allowing a larger brain to form.
      Evolution at it's finest. A "bad" mutation, allowing one of our greatest traits.

      December 5, 2013 at 1:03 pm |
  15. Lisa

    Lawrence of Arabia
    It may be a bit off topic, but I asked you this question over on the CS Lewis article and I'm still waiting for your answer, please.

    I've a question for you: Why would your creator god design humans with a fractured Vitamin C gene that we happen to share only with our closest primate relatives? Explain to me why it isn't more reasonable to conclude that we and our closest primate relatives inherited this genetic defect from a common ancestor than to assume that your God, your intelligent designer, intended to place that defect in us and these primates?

    December 5, 2013 at 11:28 am |
    • Or to make it simple

      Why Would a Perfect God Create an Imperfect Universe?

      December 5, 2013 at 11:36 am |
      • SarahJ

        Or, how can a perfect God coexist with imperfection? ~ Probably with love, mercy, forgiveness and understanding. ~ 🙂

        December 5, 2013 at 11:43 am |
        • Lisa

          But why would a perfect creator make things with such bad design?

          December 5, 2013 at 11:49 am |
        • OODEGR

          It was not God’s intention to simply fashion planets and biological beings. Nor did He intend to merely create intelligent beings. God’s purpose was to fashion GODS THROUGH GRACE; To fashion creatures that would be able to reach the stage of sharing in His Divine Life: only then will Creation be in its PERFECT state.

          December 5, 2013 at 11:51 am |
        • CharlesP

          Why would he make imperfection. He created and "saw that it was good". Is his eye just off, or did he intend to make crazy designs in creatures just to cause pain, like scurvy, which results in us because we have this defect?

          December 5, 2013 at 11:53 am |
        • SarahJ

          I think it is a pretty good design. If there is no God, than evolution is to blame? So evolution creates horribly designed creatures with horribly designed bodies and thinking skills. We are just both horrible, hu?

          December 5, 2013 at 11:54 am |
        • SarahJ

          An ‘imperfect’ thing is also one that is not yet complete! And God’s Creation is indeed not yet finished.
          We call him the "Maker of the Universe" (he is not done making yet).

          December 5, 2013 at 11:56 am |
        • Lisa

          SarahJ
          I have no trouble admitting that evolution often leads to bad design. It makes a whole lot more sense than saying that God put blind spots in our eyes on purpose.

          Our thinking skills aren't "horrible", but our minds can easily be deceived.

          Do you "see" any white dots where the lines intersect?
          [youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5YPUGLA7z_k&w=640&h=360]

          They aren't actually there, you know?

          Now, where in the Bible does it say that God got back to work creating after that first Sabbath?

          December 5, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
        • u are so bad at trying to illustrate a point

          you just proved yourself wrong.

          December 5, 2013 at 12:56 pm |
        • Lisa

          Sorry, I meant dark spots where the lines cross. Most of our brains tell us they're there, but it's a delusion, one of many instances where the mind fools us into thinking that something's real, when it's not.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:32 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          Here is a theological question for Christians: Who was the first being to sin and what was his/her/its sin?

          Follow up question: Where was that being sent if anywhere after the sin?

          December 5, 2013 at 4:41 pm |
    • Lawrence of Arabia

      All of creation was subjected to futility because of Him who subjected it. When man first sinned, God cursed all of creation because of it – a form of temporal punishment if you will. Because of this curse, we see imperfections in every physical quant.ity. And if you see similarities between species, whether it is having two symmetrical eyes, or in a defective gene, it is not because of a common ancestor, it is because of a common Designer who has both blessed and cursed creation.

      December 5, 2013 at 11:52 am |
      • Lisa

        Lawrence of Arabia
        So, you're going with the idea that God essentially recreated everything, putting in these defects? Genesis 3:17-18 simply says that he cursed the land, not all creation and every living thing on the land and in the sea, so I really don't know where you're getting this from.

        If it's because of a common designer then apes and other primates were created in the image of God as well, right?

        If you look at the fossil record there once were tetrapods with more than five fingers. Acanthostega gunnari, for example, had six. Then, later in the fossil record the standard became five and even today bats, horses, whales and humans still share these same five digits. Even though evolution has dramatically changed their shapes, they are still the same bones. Isn't it more reasonable to conclude that we are all descended from a common, five-fingered ancestor than just assuming that only the five-fingered tetrapods were invited onto the ark?

        December 5, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
      • igaftr

        Yes we know...Nogomain created all of this, and even himself out of nothingness...same old story.

        December 5, 2013 at 1:11 pm |
    • Topher

      Lisa

      Clearly I'm not Lawrence, but I hope you don't mind my taking a whack at it. First, you have several presuppositions here ... for instance that God created us with the "fractured gene," that we have a "common ancestor" and thus must have evolved.

      God didn't create us with a fractured anything. He created us perfect. How do we know this? When He was done with Creation, He called it "good." So there was no death, no disease, no fractured genes. The reason we have those things now is because of sin. Whether this fractured gene came about immediately at the Fall or is due to the thousands of years of gene exchanges, I don't know. Either way it is because of sin.

      Second, we are not "in common" with apes or anyone else. I'm sure you've heard the whole "we've got 98 percent in common with chimps." Well, that's a little misleading. It's really we're 98 percent of 2 percent in common. So less than 2 percent.

      And finally, the presupposition that we evolved. May I ask why you believe in evolution when science rejects it? There's nothing about evolution that meets the scientific method (testable and repeatable) about something that occurred millions of years ago and of which isn't observable now. We see no demonstration of a change in kinds (the term Dawkins uses) in order for it to be evolution and not natural selection. We also have never observed a creature receiving additional genetic information for it to go, say, from a fish to a frog — which is extra troubling when what we observe is only losses of information.

      So there's my initial response. Curious to hear your thoughts.

      December 5, 2013 at 11:56 am |
      • Madtown

        He created us perfect.
        ---
        To me, a perfect being doesn't make mistakes. By extension, a perfect being cannot sin. You'll disagree.

        December 5, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
      • Topher

        Madtown

        Yes, I disagree. Adam had free will, so the option existed. He took Satan's word over God's. At the very least you could argue that until a bad decision was made, they were perfect.

        December 5, 2013 at 12:14 pm |
        • Madtown

          Different definition of perfect, then. Perfect seems to me to mean the being wouldn't make a bad decision. The being is perfect, each decision made and each action taken, also perfect.

          December 5, 2013 at 12:30 pm |
        • Joey

          It seems pretty obvious that if you make a mistake you can't be perfect, and thus if god created Adam perfect then he would have never made a mistake.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:42 pm |
      • Lisa

        Topher
        "Whether this fractured gene came about immediately at the Fall or is due to the thousands of years of gene exchanges, I don't know. Either way it is because of sin."
        So, that would be evolution because of sin? Was the Garden of Eden some magical place that suppressed gene mutation, or is it simply because there was no reproduction before being expelled from the Garden, which would beg the question whether Eve was even designed to reproduce at all?

        "Second, we are not "in common" with apes or anyone else. I'm sure you've heard the whole "we've got 98 percent in common with chimps." Well, that's a little misleading. It's really we're 98 percent of 2 percent in common. So less than 2 percent."
        Well, it's neither 98 or 2% of anything, but we do share 96% of our total DNA with chimps.

        http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2005/08/0831_050831_chimp_genes.html

        "about something that occurred millions of years ago and of which isn't observable now."
        Fossils are essentially "snapshots" of life evolving back then, and shared DNA is most definitely observable now. There are several other fields of evidence that all converge to create a virtual mountain of evidence for evolution. Try this article.

        http://www.freethoughtdebater.org/2011/12/30/evolution-converging-lines-of-evidence/

        The rest of your objection lies in the fallacy that whatever doesn't happen in your own lifetime is suspect. Change happens. You might as well be asking whether mountains can erode down to hills even after seeing landslides in action.

        December 5, 2013 at 12:41 pm |
        • Topher

          Lisa

          "So, that would be evolution because of sin?"

          I don't believe in evolution.

          "Well, it's neither 98 or 2% of anything, but we do share 96% of our total DNA with chimps."

          I'm SHOCKED that the numbers have changed again. 😉

          "Fossils are essentially "snapshots" of life evolving back then, and shared DNA is most definitely observable now."

          All fossils show is that something died. It can't show evolution unless you add that presupposition. 2 percent of 96 percent is still an incredibly low number.

          "There are several other fields of evidence that all converge to create a virtual mountain of evidence for evolution. Try this article."

          None of the three problems I brought up are answered. No extra added information. No change of kinds, etc.

          "The rest of your objection lies in the fallacy that whatever doesn't happen in your own lifetime is suspect. Change happens. You might as well be asking whether mountains can erode down to hills even after seeing landslides in action."

          Oh, I agree change happens. We observe that. But it doesn't meet the definition of evolution. It's nothing more than natural selection. All changes happen within the parameters of what's currently available in the creature's genetics. It cannot become something totally different. Cows have cows. Cats have cats. Because no information is ever added, a cow will never have anything other than a cow. Could that cow, over many generations be somewhat different than the original cow? Yes. But it will still be a cow.

          December 5, 2013 at 12:53 pm |
        • Joey

          Topher from past pots you have made it is clear to me that you do in fact believe in evolution, but just refuse to admit it to yourself.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:16 pm |
        • Lisa

          Topher
          "I'm SHOCKED that the numbers have changed again. ;)"
          You gave the numbers, bud!

          "All fossils show is that something died. It can't show evolution unless you add that presupposition. 2 percent of 96 percent is still an incredibly low number."
          I suppose you wouldn't be happy unless we had the fossils of every single individual creature that has ever lived? And I already showed you that your 2 and 98 thing isn't what the scientific community accepts. Creationists might accept it, but they'll gobble up anything at face value.

          "None of the three problems I brought up are answered. No extra added information. No change of kinds, etc."
          Gene mutations aren't extra added information?

          "It's nothing more than natural selection."
          If you started taking actual photos of your family's cats, after enough generations of offspring your ancestors might not call that animal strictly a "cat" like you're use to. It might look pretty cat-like, but once enough drift has occurred it wouldn't be able to mate with your tabby. Go further up the line and you might have trouble telling them from a wolverine, or a small bear, and so on. Small changes add up to big changes over time. You're just not willing to accept the evidence that enough time has elapsed.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:28 pm |
        • Joey

          genome shows that our closest living relatives share 96 percent of our DNA. The number of genetic differences between humans and chimps is ten times smaller than that between mice and rats.

          http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2005/08/0831_050831_chimp_genes.html

          December 5, 2013 at 1:45 pm |
        • Some Antics

          "It cannot become something totally different. Cows have cows. Cats have cats. Because no information is ever added, a cow will never have anything other than a cow."

          You should believe Topher, he has speant years trying to get a different result but no amount of cow banging has ever produced a cowman, no matter how hard he tried...

          December 5, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
        • Topher

          Lisa

          "I suppose you wouldn't be happy unless we had the fossils of every single individual creature that has ever lived?"

          Not only would I want the fossil of every single creature that ever lived but I would want to have the knowledge of which parented which so that we can see the changes. A standalone fossil only proves something died. Let's say you and I were out on a hike and we discovered a fossil. When giving it to some scientists, we are told they have never seen anything like it and it must be the link between animal x and animal y. However, without an evolutionary presupposition, we would never be able to come to that conclusion. All we could conclude was that this creature existed and it died. You realize that the number of fossils we have is virtually nothing in comparison to how many creatures lived? Just because that fossil doesn't fit into anything we know about, doesn't mean we can just willy-nilly decide we know what it ate, what age it was, its lifespan, any of that.

          "Gene mutations aren't extra added information?"

          No, they're not. And not only that, but mutations are bad for you. Evolution says changes happen for good.

          "If you started taking actual photos of your family's cats, after enough generations of offspring your ancestors might not call that animal strictly a "cat" like you're use to. It might look pretty cat-like, but once enough drift has occurred it wouldn't be able to mate with your tabby."

          But it's still a cat.

          "Go further up the line and you might have trouble telling them from a wolverine, or a small bear, and so on. Small changes add up to big changes over time. You're just not willing to accept the evidence that enough time has elapsed."

          This can't happen. A cat doesn't have it in his genetics to become "bear-like." It only has genes to be a cat. Now, those genes have differences that, for instance, gives it different body build, long or short hair, different colors for its fur, etc.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
        • Topher

          Joey

          "Topher from past pots you have made it is clear to me that you do in fact believe in evolution, but just refuse to admit it to yourself."

          I used to believe in it. I was fascinated by that stuff. Considered majoring in biology. And even took anthropology in college for fun. But as it turns out, it's nothing more than a belief system. And in a worldview based strictly on science, it just doesn't stand up.

          December 5, 2013 at 2:04 pm |
        • Joey

          NO you still believe in evolution and just refuse to admit it. You admit that animals change over time, and that is all evolution is. Trying to argue that these changes can't add up to a new species is like trying to argue that meters can't add up to become a kilometer.

          December 5, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
        • Topher

          Joey

          Well, I believe in MICRO evolution. But that's just another word for natural selection. But no, that's not evolution. Evolution says changes occur so much so that the offspring eventually becomes not what its ancestors were. Not only have we not seen that, but biologically that's impossible.

          December 5, 2013 at 2:23 pm |
        • Science Works

          Joey and someday topher and wife are going to have a baby with out se-x – because god did it.

          December 5, 2013 at 2:30 pm |
        • Topher

          Umm ... what?

          December 5, 2013 at 2:31 pm |
        • Lisa

          Topher
          If you like the changing ideas argument then you'll love this detailed telling of evolving creationist thinking a la PZ Myers. I like the part where the modern literal approach came from a Seventh Day Adventist prophetess. Priceless!

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

          December 5, 2013 at 2:37 pm |
        • Topher

          Lisa

          Did you watch Evolution vs. God? PZ Myers is in it quite a bit.

          Modern literal approach of what? If he means the Bible, that's ridiculous.

          December 5, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
        • Joey

          Exactly Topher, trying to argue that micro evolution can happen but macro evolution can't is absurd. It is like trying to argue that meters can't add up to become kilometers.

          December 5, 2013 at 3:07 pm |
        • Topher

          Joey

          "Exactly Topher, trying to argue that micro evolution can happen but macro evolution can't is absurd."

          What's absurd about it? One we see happening, the other we don't. One is scientifically possible, the other isn't.

          December 5, 2013 at 3:13 pm |
        • Joey

          Because micro evolution and macro evolution are the same thing.

          December 5, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
        • Topher

          Joey

          "Because micro evolution and macro evolution are the same thing."

          Dude ... c'mon. No, they're not. Micro is changes within a kind (i.e, there are changes but not into something else). Macro is a change of kinds (i.e., the changes result in an entirely different creature.)

          December 5, 2013 at 3:47 pm |
        • Løki

          Nur Trottel Kreationisten, verwenden die Begriffe "Mikro" und "Makro"-Evolution

          December 5, 2013 at 3:53 pm |
        • Joey

          Macroevolutionary studies focus on change that occurs at or above the level of species, in contrast with microevolution,[2] which refers to smaller evolutionary changes (typically described as changes in allele frequencies) within a species or population.[3] Contrary to claims by creationists, macro and microevolution describe fundamentally identical processes on different time scales.[4][1]

          December 5, 2013 at 3:54 pm |
        • Joey

          Topher, I suggest you read the last sentence of the above post 20 or 30 times so that it might sink in.

          December 5, 2013 at 3:55 pm |
        • Topher

          Link, please.

          December 5, 2013 at 4:25 pm |
        • Just the Facts Ma'am...

          Is an avalanche a micro or macro event? Much like evolution it is both.

          December 5, 2013 at 4:31 pm |
        • Pete

          Joey
          You can lead a creationist to facts, but you can't make him think! Don't waste too much time on Topher. It's like arguing with a two year old who simply says "No, it's not" to everyone their parents tell them.

          December 5, 2013 at 4:41 pm |
        • Topher

          Pete

          You can easily defeat me. Here's how. Show me the evidence of a change in kinds. Show me proof that a creature is gaining genetic information. Without those things, all you have is faith.

          December 5, 2013 at 4:50 pm |
        • Joey

          Topher all life started as single celled organisms so every animal and plant alive today is an example of a change in kind.

          December 5, 2013 at 4:56 pm |
        • Pete

          Look at Lisa's video at around the 46 minute mark where he explains how Answers in Genesis claims that horse evolution, from tiny, dog-sized species to modern horses must have "hyper-evolved" over 4000 years. That's reasonable to them, but 50 million of years is ridiculous?!? Too funny! Go ahead, believe your fairytales.

          December 5, 2013 at 4:56 pm |
        • Topher

          Joey

          "Topher all life started as single celled organisms so every animal and plant alive today is an example of a change in kind."

          How do you know that?

          December 5, 2013 at 5:05 pm |
        • Joey

          The fossil record.

          December 5, 2013 at 5:07 pm |
        • CharlesP

          Lisa
          Excellent video! I can't believe the character who's the number one publishing "scientist" for intelligent design: a retired veterinarian working out of his garage, which he calls an "inst itute. Precious!

          December 5, 2013 at 5:09 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Topher, DNA analysis shows human lineage back through apes, mammals in general, back to fish and beyond. Skeletons are generally not fossilized so it is very unlikely that there will never be a complete set of transitional fossils although many exist. The split from our closest common ancestor was 3 million years ago – one line became a chimpanzee and another became human. DNA shows it happened; fossils show intermittent snapsnots. QED.

          December 5, 2013 at 5:13 pm |
        • Joey

          Topher the post I made comes from wikipedia, however the last sentence of the post comes from:

          Futuyma, Douglas (1998). Evolutionary Biology. Sinauer Associates.

          December 5, 2013 at 5:13 pm |
        • Topher

          Do we even have single-celled fossils? Second, the fossil record can't prove evolution.

          December 5, 2013 at 5:15 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          ... that there will ever be ..

          December 5, 2013 at 5:15 pm |
        • Joey

          Prove it? Perhaps not it will always be a theory as that is as far as things go in science. However, until you can show me a multicellular organism that dates to be older than the oldest known single celled organism it is safe to assume that all life started as single celled organisms.

          December 5, 2013 at 5:22 pm |
        • Pete

          Topher
          So, the only evidence you would consider reasonable is if I can literally take you back 50 million years and watch one species evolve into another? Gee, did someone have to drag your butt out into space for a year to show you that the Earth revolves around the Sun? This is a waste of time talking to you.

          December 5, 2013 at 5:23 pm |
        • Joey

          Yes Pete that seems to be how he works, except when it comes the claims in the bible which can be taken at face value.

          December 5, 2013 at 5:27 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Topher
          "Do we even have single-celled fossils?"
          How could that happen?

          "Micro is changes within a kind (i.e, there are changes but not into something else). Macro is a change of kinds (i.e., the changes result in an entirely different creature.)"
          No macro is just micro over a longer period. The DNA shows that – our DNA shows fish ancestry and more. Evolution doesn't say that a chimpanzee became a human – it says that they had a common ancestor about 3 million years ago and that each branch evolved into what it is today.

          December 5, 2013 at 5:29 pm |
  16. Alias

    I would like to point out that incenturies past, when government and church were entertwined, the christians openly did this to everyone.
    I see no reason to believe the morals of the church has changed.

    December 5, 2013 at 11:13 am |
    • Mrs. Travis

      According to the Pope, times have changed and so should the Church.

      December 5, 2013 at 11:31 am |
      • Alias

        There have been changes in the church, but they are not any more moral than they used to be.

        December 5, 2013 at 12:22 pm |
        • Mr Travis

          Some people have left the church and religion all together. They are not any moral than those who have remained.

          December 5, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
        • Alias

          Completely unrelated to my point.

          December 5, 2013 at 12:39 pm |
        • Mrs. Travis

          Not my response @ 12:38

          Changing my name again.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
        • fyi

          Mrs. Travis,

          The reply at 12:38 is from MR. Travis. Change away, though. Have fun.

          December 5, 2013 at 1:34 pm |
      • Science Works

        If they (RCC/pope) have any morals it looks like they have not changed.

        Vatican refuses to give UN panel full details of clerical se-x abuse cases
        Holy See angers campaigners by not disclosing information requested by UN committee on the rights of the child

        http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/dec/04/vatican-refuses-un-panel-details-clerical-se-x-abuse-cases?CMP=twt_fd

        December 5, 2013 at 12:53 pm |
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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.