February 28th, 2014
12:08 PM ET

Opinion: #HotJesus: Must He be sexy?

Opinion by Carol Costello, CNN

Editor's note: Carol Costello anchors the 9 to 11 a.m. ET edition of CNN's "Newsroom" each weekday. Watch at 9:40 a.m. ET Thursday for a discussion of the new film about Jesus.

(CNN) - Clearly Jesus was sexy.

After all, He is the Son of God.

I don't mean to be disrespectful, but as I watched the trailer for the new movie, "Son of God," I found myself gawking at the actor portraying Jesus.

Diogo Morgado is one hot dude. His Jesus looks more like Brad Pitt than that nice man with the beard in all those paintings.

I'm not the only one gawking at Morgodo's Jesus. He inspired the hashtag, "#HotJesus". It went viral on Twitter. The actor told The New York Times he doesn't want his looks to distract from the movie, but, "If the message of Jesus was love, hope and compassion, and I can bring that to more people by being a more appealing Jesus, I am happy with that."

Clearly we have a new trend. A "more appealing" Jesus is not just a better prophet, he's ... sexy.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Bible • Christianity • Jesus • Movies • Opinion

soundoff (283 Responses)
  1. dandintac

    Religion, especially in the west, is a collection of myths that reflect our cultures collective hopes and fears. It is not surprising to see this author's observations. We should not be surprised when mythic characters are Hollywoodized. Jesus is almost always portrayed in the west as having brown hair, white skin and European features. Ignore how people look in that region! Jesus was one of us!

    February 28, 2014 at 10:44 pm |
  2. joeyy1


    February 28, 2014 at 9:54 pm |
  3. Tom, Tom, the Other One

    The whip makes him sexy.

    February 28, 2014 at 9:43 pm |
  4. derado8

    Oded Fehr

    That says it all.

    Duece Bigalow "Here fishy fishy fishy. Here fishy"

    February 28, 2014 at 7:11 pm |
  5. hotairace

    People! It's just a story. A crappy bit of bad fiction written by mostly unknown 1st century desert dwellers. Jesus is no more real than any Fabio in your favorite bodice ripper. Unless of course you can prove, with real evidence, me wrong.

    February 28, 2014 at 5:34 pm |
    • Austin

      I had another dream hit today. On feb 2 i had a dream that my cousin bill was unconsciouss in the hospital. Today he is in the hospital with 85 percent heart failure.

      That one rings the bell! Never had another dream about bill. In fact i have seen him 3 times in the last 25 years.

      That puts me well over 30 spiritual revelations now. They are becoming much more frequent!

      He is risen.

      February 28, 2014 at 9:31 pm |
      • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

        So your confrmation bias is better.

        "HONEY...Is Jesus still dead?"

        ....."Still dead..!!"

        February 28, 2014 at 9:39 pm |
      • realbuckyball

        So you did nothing to warn him or help him ?
        You're real nice.
        People with that % of heart failure don't just "get that sick". He clearly has issues before.
        He's still dead.
        So you are SO utterly self-centered, that you actually think your Jebus can let 1,000,000 babies DIE this year, 20,000 people die in a tsunami last year, but thinks YOUR family is important enough to make YOU dream.
        Go get help. There MUST be pills for that.

        February 28, 2014 at 9:49 pm |
        • Austin

          Ya God is a personal person. He knows how to deal with anyone on a personal level. There are different gifts and different ministering angels .

          February 28, 2014 at 9:59 pm |
        • realbuckyball

          LMAO. You people have excuses for absolutely everything.
          Tell THAT to the parents of 10 of the babies.
          Keep your "ministering angel" in your pants.

          February 28, 2014 at 11:19 pm |
        • realbuckyball

          BTW, if god is a "person", then she has a "personaity", and not another.
          That means she's not "infinite". "Personhood", and "infinite" are self refuting, by definition.
          Please consider getting an education, at some point in your life.

          February 28, 2014 at 11:21 pm |
        • dandintac

          "...if god is a “person”, then she has a “personaity”, and not another.
          That means she’s not “infinite”. “Personhood”, and “infinite” are self refuting, by definition."

          Insightful observation. Another reason why I do this–sometimes someone comes up with an angle that I've never thought of before. To be a "person" and therefore "personal" means to have some traits, and not others. Definitely incongruous with the concept of an "infinite being".

          One of the biggest buzzwords Christians use nowadays is the claim that they have a "personal relationship" with this being that is described as "infinite". It's really an outrageous claim if you think about it even a little, not to mention that there is no evidence whatsoever for it.

          March 1, 2014 at 12:38 am |
      • sam stone

        prove your claims, austin

        otherwise, you are a coward and a liar

        March 1, 2014 at 5:48 am |
      • TruthPrevails1

        Austin: Anti-psychotic meds will help with those delusions.
        Exactly why do you bother posting your stories when you know that they will be ridiculed and you'll be called out for the fraud you are? Is there some cheap thrill you get by doing this? We've previously suggested you contact JRF and yet you refuse to, making you appear a liar and a coward.

        March 1, 2014 at 8:28 am |
  6. MadeFromDirt

    So Hollywood is more interested in sensationalism and selling tickets than in historical or theological accuracy? Who would have thought...?
    This movie may be good for a few hours of entertainment, or even for opening up interest and discussion, but it would be foolish for anyone to look at this movie as providing any sort of divine truth. God's Truth can only be found in Scripture, and His creation.

    February 28, 2014 at 4:56 pm |
    • sam stone

      it would be foolish for anyone to look at Scriptire as providing any sort of divine truth.

      February 28, 2014 at 5:45 pm |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      Made From Dirt

      Then why is there still dirt?


      February 28, 2014 at 11:02 pm |
      • MadeFromDirt

        Blessed.... forgive me, I don't understand your attempted point. Please explain.

        March 1, 2014 at 10:56 am |
    • realbuckyball

      Really ? Not in himself then ?
      Pious bs.

      February 28, 2014 at 11:46 pm |
  7. Akira

    This actor's hair is naturally darker. They lightened up for this...wonder why? (I know.) He's better looking (IMO) with darker hair...although I think they matched the shade to a stained glass window somewhere...

    Imagine if Bronies started writing fan-fic for #HotJesus...ew.

    February 28, 2014 at 4:33 pm |
    • Alias

      If they want to sell tickets to the majority of christians in the USA, jesus had better be white with brown hair.

      February 28, 2014 at 5:03 pm |
  8. Sungrazer

    I could really use some skydiving music right now.

    February 28, 2014 at 3:51 pm |
    • Doris

      Oh goodness no, here try this..lol..


      February 28, 2014 at 4:06 pm |
      • Sungrazer

        How about Jupiter, the Bringer of Jollity?

        February 28, 2014 at 4:11 pm |
      • Austin

        That song in the middle is great. The first song reminded me of tom and jerry. Goodnight.

        February 28, 2014 at 9:55 pm |
    • Akira

      Shh! That'll make joeyy appear! It's a jinx!

      February 28, 2014 at 4:38 pm |
      • Sungrazer

        Was it you that made the "two y's" joke? I enjoyed that.

        February 28, 2014 at 4:42 pm |
  9. Mark

    John 3:16: For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

    February 28, 2014 at 3:00 pm |
    • Mark

      Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

      February 28, 2014 at 3:03 pm |
    • Mark

      John 8 “Very truly I tell you,” Jesus answered, “before Abraham was born, I am!”

      February 28, 2014 at 3:03 pm |
    • Mark

      Death Through Adam, Life Through Christ

      12 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned—

      13 To be sure, sin was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not charged against anyone’s account where there is no law. 14 Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who is a pattern of the one to come.

      15 But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! 16 Nor can the gift of God be compared with the result of one man’s sin: The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification. 17 For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!

      18 Consequently, just as one trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people. 19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.

      20 The law was brought in so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, 21 so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

      February 28, 2014 at 3:06 pm |
      • realbuckyball

        Oh great. A bunch of lines from a set of ancient books, written BY believers, FOR believers about what they already believed. And some modern humans are actually SO gullible to think that in 2014 it actually means something.

        The ti'tle "son of god" was a generic honorific, which was given to MANY righteous politicians, heroes, and famous men. It did not in anyway imply they were of equal status with Yahweh. No Jew would buy into that. Even *If* "divinity" is interpreted as true, it STILL doesn't mean "god" status. The Hebrews believed in all sorts of divine beings, (see the place where the Witch of Endor conjures the shade of Samuel for Saul ... she says she sees a "divine being"). The Church Fathers FOUGHT like cats and dogs for centuries about what they eventually invented ... the Trinity.

        February 28, 2014 at 9:34 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      For God so loved the world that He took a mulligan on creation and wiped out everything that couldn't fit on a 400ft boat.

      February 28, 2014 at 3:15 pm |
      • Mark

        Every human being as an opinion of how his/her god should be. Some cultures have 300 million deities to satisfy their desire and made gods in their own image.

        February 28, 2014 at 3:19 pm |
        • Alias

          So every religion except your created god in their image????

          February 28, 2014 at 3:25 pm |
        • Mark

          There is only ONE GOD.

          February 28, 2014 at 3:26 pm |
        • Doris

          or not.

          February 28, 2014 at 3:36 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          There is only one God and __________ is His prophet.

          Woe betide those who reject (INSERT HOLY BOOK) as the inerrant word of (INSERT DEITY) for they shall never know the bliss of (INSERT AFTERLIFE).

          If the One True Deity, shaper of The Universe, wishes their words to be transmitted and adhered to, they should have been a bit less ambiguous. Expecting people to select The Truth out of limitless possibilities on faith alone seems a sloppy way to run things – especially if the punishment for a wrong choice is eternal torment.

          February 28, 2014 at 3:38 pm |
        • Walt Jones

          What do you mean by 300 million deities?

          Some people worship the sun and stars, some people plants and some others worship some other special creatures like snakes. Haven't you heard different paths all lead to the same destiny?You are an illusion, this world is an illusion. Your salvation can be obtained when you realize that you are an illusion.

          February 28, 2014 at 3:43 pm |
        • Sungrazer

          'You can safely assume you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do." -Anne Lamott

          February 28, 2014 at 3:46 pm |
        • Blake

          Point I

          What illusion are you talking about?

          How can this world and you be an illusion?

          Test yourself-Pinch yourself hard and see if you feel the pain.

          Point II
          Also, all paths cannot lead to the truth. It's called the law of non-contradiction.

          February 28, 2014 at 3:51 pm |
        • Blake

          That is the most confusing philosophy I have ever heard.

          Do you guys deliberately confuse yourselves with your mumbo jumbo about "illusion"?

          February 28, 2014 at 3:56 pm |
        • Doris

          Who is "you guys", Blakey?

          February 28, 2014 at 3:58 pm |
        • Walt Jones

          Maya is the principal deity that manifests, perpetuates and governs the illusion and dream of duality in the phenomenal Universe.This manifestation is real.Each person, each physical object, from the perspective of eternity,
          is like a brief, disturbed drop of water from an unbounded ocean. The goal of enlightenment is to understand this — more precisely to experience this: to see intuitively that the distinction between the self and the Universe is a false dichotomy.

          February 28, 2014 at 4:07 pm |
        • Blake

          Seriously? You guys believe this nonsense about being an illusion?

          How many people have you conned with this specious, wordy, nonsensical philosophy?

          February 28, 2014 at 4:15 pm |
        • Blake

          The philosophy about life being an "illusion" makes ZERO sense.

          February 28, 2014 at 4:18 pm |
        • Doris

          Who is "you guys", Blakey?

          February 28, 2014 at 4:18 pm |
        • Blake

          You have only one life to live, after that it is judgment, you might as well seek the truth before it too late!

          February 28, 2014 at 4:20 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Who will be doing the judging?
          St Peter will bar non-catholics.
          To get into the Celestial Kingdom you've got to know the secret handshakes and password to get past Joseph Smith.
          Perhaps you should worry about how your heart weighs up against Ma'at's shu feather.
          Or Odin might bar you from Valhalla if you die like a wimp in bed instead of bathed in the blood of your vanquished foes on the field of battle.
          Is your karmic balance good enough to be reincarnated as something better than a dung beetle? So many posthumous judges.... and all of them with different criteria for entry in their respective afterlives.

          February 28, 2014 at 4:26 pm |
        • Blake

          If you are one of those that believes that you are an illusion, yes judgment must sound like an illusion to you.

          Seek the truth before it is too late before your realize that life on planet earth was not an "illusion" after all!

          February 28, 2014 at 4:31 pm |
        • Doris

          "Truth" as articulated by fundies like Blake here, might lead one to think it's something you stock up on at Costco.

          February 28, 2014 at 4:32 pm |
        • Blake


          If it were not for your obsessive YouTube videos that you post every other hour, one would take you seriously and your comments would warrant an answer. At this moment you come across as a loony posting the same drivel.

          February 28, 2014 at 4:36 pm |
        • Sungrazer

          I find the possibility of being in a Matrix style (brain in a vat) illusion more likely than living in a universe where a omnibenevolent personal god exists.

          February 28, 2014 at 4:40 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          Blake: You're right...we have only one life to live, anything there after hasn't been shown to exist and therefore is strictly speculation, nothing more.

          February 28, 2014 at 4:43 pm |
        • Doris

          Can you give me a percentage, Blake. You know, for my posts, of content written, and content video. Oh and you can add quotes as a separate breakdown as well if you like...

          February 28, 2014 at 4:44 pm |
        • Alias

          You need to understand that your religious beliefs are just myths to everyone who doesn't believe in your god.

          February 28, 2014 at 5:01 pm |
        • realbuckyball

          Aren't you just SO *special*.
          Of all the millions of deities humans have ever invented, *YOURS* just happens to be the one that just happens to be true. If you had been born a Muslim, YOU would be a Muslim.

          February 28, 2014 at 9:37 pm |
        • Woody

          "You have only one life to live, after that it is judgment....." – Blake

          Ah yes, the legendary Judgement Day. If this Judgement Day is a literal 24 hour day, as the fundies believe (you know, god created the universe in 6 days), then all of the people that ever lived, will be judged in 24 hours. According to the latest calculations, approximately 107 Billion people have lived on this planet. That would mean 1,238,426 people would have to be judged every second!!! Wow, god sure has his work cut out for him.

          March 1, 2014 at 3:58 am |
        • AtheistSteve

          "You have only one life to live, after that it is judgment....." – Blake

          The only judgment I need to concern myself with is by the people whose lives I affect directly...here and now. The impact of any of my decisions on a universal scale are so insignificant that they may as well be considered as non-existent. Even if a creator god was real it seems unfathomable that the minutiae of my lifes experiences would concern such a being. But then again the ego of believers has no bounds. After all they actually think that their lives are cosmically significant enough to attract the attention of the supposed creator of the universe.

          March 1, 2014 at 9:43 am |
  10. Doc Vestibule

    I believe that the main reason Jesus took up preaching is because he failed his carpenter's apprenticeship.
    After his fifth wobbly table, his father likely told him to find some other skill.

    February 28, 2014 at 2:44 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule


      February 28, 2014 at 2:51 pm |
      • Doris

        Oh my – one of my favorite sketch groups. I'll check it out after lunch.

        February 28, 2014 at 3:05 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          By the way Doris – have you heard that Scotland is offering asylum to gay Ugandans?

          February 28, 2014 at 3:14 pm |
        • Doris

          No I hadn't, but I just pulled up the link. Thanks, Doc. I think every voice will count on this. I hope the World Bank continues to delay the next payment there.

          February 28, 2014 at 3:17 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          Doris: http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/home-news/scots-bid-to-offer-ugandan-gay-law-asylum.23551827

          February 28, 2014 at 5:12 pm |
    • ausphor

      Fishing, him and his twelve buddies, doesn't say if they made a profit. Didn't even need a range finder to cast their nets, just get himself to walk around and find the schools of fish.

      February 28, 2014 at 2:57 pm |
    • Alias

      Jesus was a Rabi.

      February 28, 2014 at 5:06 pm |
      • ausphor

        Not sure if you left out a b in Rabbi, or the d in rabid, either would work.

        March 1, 2014 at 7:12 am |
  11. Doris

    Why is it that some scientists who are Christians sell two different stories at the same time about the reliability of dating methods?

    Read about Andrew Snelling.

    February 28, 2014 at 2:27 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      But are these scientists hot?

      February 28, 2014 at 2:29 pm |
      • Doris

        Lol. good point, not(GOPer). The more I read about the actions of this Scott Lively character and the more I read Austin's posts, the more fired up I get.

        February 28, 2014 at 2:35 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          What Scott Lively is doing is unspeakable.

          You might be interested in a docu.mentary called "God Loves Uganda". The filmmaker Roger Ross Williams was interviewed by Jon Stewart a little while ago. It was a really good interview.


          The Daily Show page won't play right now for some reason.

          February 28, 2014 at 3:03 pm |
        • Doris

          Thanks, not(GOPer). I haven't seen it yet, but I've come across several references to that film.

          February 28, 2014 at 3:13 pm |
    • lunchbreaker

      This kind of reminds me of the church that blatantly posted lies about Marilyn Manson because of how eveil they thought he was. I mean, he was a Christian parent's worse nightmare with no help from anyone else. But I suppose some Christians feel breaking a commandment is ok if the ends justify the means.

      February 28, 2014 at 2:32 pm |
  12. new-man


    John 14:7 "If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him." (JOHN 14:7)

    Knowing Jesus is knowing the Father. This is not only because Jesus did exactly what He saw His Father do, but Jesus was God in the flesh.

    The disciples didn't realize that seeing Jesus was seeing God. They were expecting something more. Many times we miss seeing God work in our lives and circu.mstances because we are looking for something stupendous. Although it is true that God is totally awesome, He doesn't usually choose to manifest Himself in that way.

    God spoke to Elijah not in the fire, wind, or an earthquake, but in a still, small voice. Jesus didn't come to this earth in a grand way by man's standards, but was born to poor parents in a stable. Isaiah 53:2 says that Jesus had no form nor beauty that would make us think that He was anything more than a mere man.

    Paul reveals in 1 Corinthians 1:27-29, that God chooses to do things this way so that no flesh will glory in His presence. The Lord wants us to focus on Him through faith and not concentrate on the physical things He uses. In the Old Testament when the Lord did use visible instruments to release His power, the Israelites made idols out of those things.

    Just as the disciples saw Jesus but didn't realize that what they saw was God, likewise, God is infinitely involved in our everyday lives, but we miss Him because we are blinded by our carnal minds. The primary reason that God chooses to use those who are nothing by the world's standards is so that no one else will take the credit for the great things that are accomplished.


    February 28, 2014 at 2:13 pm |
    • ausphor

      I guess there is no way to stop you from posting this tripe, it is your right. Do you know what a joke and a bible verse have in common? Neither have to make sense.

      February 28, 2014 at 2:18 pm |
    • realbuckyball

      Paul "reveals" nothing except that he was a hallucinating freak, who hated women, and probably himself. He was a dwarf, most likely. He name is a Roman term for "small". He was clearly insane. He said he got his gospel from no man ... he hallucinated it.

      February 28, 2014 at 9:40 pm |
  13. Doc Vestibule


    February 28, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      From the ending credits (not the K-tal record commercial) of Episode 709, 'Christian Rock Hard':

      Body of Christ! Sleek swimmer's body, all muscled up and toned!
      Body of Christ! O, Lord Almighty, I wish I could call it my own!
      Lord Almighty oooooooooo, I've never been so enticed!
      Oh I wish I could have the body of Christ!

      Body of Christ!
      Body of Christ!
      Body of Christ!
      Lord Almighty oooooooooo, I've never been so enticed!
      Oh I wish I could have the body of Christ!

      February 28, 2014 at 2:19 pm |
  14. Behati

    This movie is probably one of the very few films in history that covers the entire history of Jesus from birth, crucifixion to the ascension of Jesus.

    Whoever plays the role of Jesus on the big screen carries an awesome responsibility and a tremendous burden to be able to fulfill the part. Hope Diogo led a very prayerful life throughout his role in the film, as he played the part.

    Hope those who do not know Christ will be moved and touched in a very special way by the cinematic presentation.

    February 28, 2014 at 1:42 pm |
    • TruthPrevails1

      When and if I watch it, I will do so taking it as I would any other fictional movie. I know that fiction is based on the imagination of men, just like the bible is.

      February 28, 2014 at 1:54 pm |
    • doobzz

      Whoever plays the role of Indiana Jones on the big screen carries an awesome responsibility and a tremendous burden to be able to fulfill the part. Hope Harrison Ford led a very prayerful life throughout his role in the Indiana Jones films, as he played the part.

      February 28, 2014 at 1:59 pm |
    • Alias

      Does Satan have a role in this movie?
      How would you suggest he live while filming?

      February 28, 2014 at 2:13 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        And did they get Barak Obama (or at least that guy from Morocco, who kinda sorta looked like him with hard lighting) to play the devil again?

        February 28, 2014 at 2:38 pm |
  15. Alias

    This should go along with why people portray a jesus image on a cross that reflects the race of the congregation.
    More people will accept jesus if he has eye appeal.
    Should this matter? No.
    Does it matter? Yes.

    February 28, 2014 at 1:23 pm |
  16. Rainer Helmut Braendlein

    It is not interesting at all whether Jesus was attractive. Most people we are concerned with, we do not weigh up according to their appearance but according to their behaviour. The behaviour or character of somebody is crucial, not his appearance.

    And that is what made Jesus so great – his perfect behaviour or character. He who was sinless loved people despite their sinfulness. Jesus did not judge like the Scribes and Pharisees. He even received the baptism of John the Baptist. By this baptism was proclaimed that the person to be baptized is a sinner needing a deliverer. Yet, Jesus himself was in fact the great Deliverer. He was not in need of a deliverer, and he was no sinner at all. By getting baptized Jesus joined the fellowship of us sinners.

    After John's baptism of repentance and preaching of repentance, certainly many Jews seriously tried to change their lives. They really tried to cease from sinning, and to love their fellow human beings. Yet, the more they did that, the more they felt their intrinsic sinfulness. But, thank God, after John the Baptist came Jesus, the Deliverer. He told the poor sinners things like that: "Come on, and follow me!", or "Your sins are forgiven!" By that divine words God-Lord Jesus (Kyrios Jesus) set the people free. Jesus' words were much more powerful than the words of an ordinary man because Jesus was God's Son. Jesus set free the people with the same power with which he had once made heaven and earth (gigantic).

    How can we experience such releasing words today?

    That takes place through sacramental baptism where the Church baptizes us in Jesus name, and that is the same as if He would personally talk with us (sacramental baptism includes infant baptism; no rebaptism).

    Before baptism becomes effective for us, we have to repent seriously, and to accept the gospel as true, also the teaching about the meaning of baptism.


    February 28, 2014 at 1:16 pm |
    • Rainer Helmut Braendlein

      The gospel:

      Jesus has borne our sins when he died for us on the cross; he lives to make us righteous.

      Try to keep seriously the commandments of the Torah, and you will notice soon your intrinsic sinfulness.

      February 28, 2014 at 1:23 pm |
      • Alias

        If god the father wanted to figive our sins, why didn't he just do it?
        Why was it in any way necessary to torture an innocent man to death?

        February 28, 2014 at 1:25 pm |
        • Rainer Helmut Braendlein

          The sacrifice of Jesus was not only about forgiveness but he did more.

          According to Bonhoeffer and the Early Church: Jesus has borne our sinful flesh, the whole sinful mankind. Togther with Jesus died the degenerated, sinful nature of man.

          He has eliminated the problem of the sinful nature of men since the Fall.

          Through faith in Jesus we do not get just forgiveness but also our old sinful nature gets declared dead.

          When we make us of that truth, our life will become better gradually despite our body which is still sinful.

          February 28, 2014 at 1:32 pm |
        • Rainer Helmut Braendlein

          We have a free will. God will never violate our free will. Yet, we are sinful, completely sinful. If God had changed us without Jesus sacrifice he had to make us new personalitiies (new wills), but that had meant the destruction of us in the sinful state. That had meant our psychological annihilation.

          Therefore God Jesus died for us, and together with him our old man of sin, we as sinners. We as sinners are dead through Jesus sacrifce. Yet, our will has not been damaged in any way. Through faith we can daily, more and more, accept that we have died for the sin voluntarily, and change gradually.

          God has found a way to make us new without violating us or destroying our personality which we yet had under the sin.

          February 28, 2014 at 1:45 pm |
        • Alias

          Again, why couldn't your all powerful god have done this without the whole murder part?
          If he wanted to forgive us and change our nature, he could have just done it, right?

          February 28, 2014 at 1:58 pm |
        • MadeFromDirt

          Alias, permit me to step in for Rainer....
          God is Holy, perfect, righteous, immutable. He must punish sin, as He promised. Christ bore the necessary punishment for whoever accepts Him as their substtute. So by His grace and mercy and love, God does forgive people with faith, and He is changing our nature so that we may dwell with Him in righteousness forever.

          February 28, 2014 at 2:40 pm |
        • new-man


          Thanks. I was hoping your post regarding the refusal of service would be posted on all pages as it encompassed my take on the whole situation.... was even thinking of re-posting it myself.


          February 28, 2014 at 2:56 pm |
        • Alias

          You said "Christ bore the necessary punishment ..."
          What I'm asking is why was that punishment necessary?
          Why couldn't god have forgiven his faithful without having a child and killing it on a cross?

          February 28, 2014 at 3:03 pm |
        • MadeFromDirt

          Alias, your question was answered as clear as I can, but I will try again this way to help you see it: The punishment is necessary because God is pure, and He promised that He would punish sin. God is eternally Holy and a perfect judge, and He always keeps His promises.

          New-man, I think you got me confused with someone else. I don't remember posting about "refusal of service". But keep up your good efforts anyway.

          February 28, 2014 at 4:35 pm |
        • MadeFromDirt

          New-man, sorry my mistake. I remember now... I commented about "refusal of service" on the Religion Under Attack in Arizona post, page 2. That was me. Thank you.

          February 28, 2014 at 5:03 pm |
        • Alias

          you are missing my point. Your god is all-knowing, all-seeing, and all-powerful.
          He could have forgiven us all if he had wanted to without anyone suffering. He chose to kill jesus. If he was the god as described in the bible, he clearly had other options.

          February 28, 2014 at 5:10 pm |
        • sam stone

          made from dirt: if god is omniscient, he knows what we are going to do before we do it, and free will does not exist. if god punishes people who lack free will, he is a tyrant

          February 28, 2014 at 6:00 pm |
        • the0g0to0the0t

          "God will never violate our free will. "

          Hmm... I'm seem to recall him "hardening" someone's heart.... hmmm... Here's a poser for you – Did Jesus have free will? Could he really have not "taken the cup put before him"? And a second part – Is there free will in heaven?

          February 28, 2014 at 8:01 pm |
        • MadeFromDirt

          Alias, I understand your point, but your point is not valid. It imposes a false presumption onto God. God cannot contradict Himself. He must punish sin. Your question is in the same vein as the question "If God is all-powerful, can He create a rock so big that even He can't lift it?"

          Sam, your complaint reveals a similar desire to create a man-centered reality. God exists outside of time. He can observe all time in our created universe as the present. So He does know all our choices, but that is not the same as making our choices for us. Are you denying that you have a choice in how you live your life? Are you compelled by God to post your doubting comments? Are you compelled by God to love the people you do?

          The0g...., in time God does harden the heart of evil men, as a precursor to their final judgment. Jesus did have free will when he lived as a man. There is free will in heaven, and in our glorified eternal state free from the bondage of sin our desire is only to serve God's glory; what could be a better choice or greater purpose?

          February 28, 2014 at 8:27 pm |
        • sam stone

          "So He does know all our choices, but that is not the same as making our choices for us "
          In the case of an omniscient being, it is. Here is a little test. If you APPARENTLY have two choices, A or B, and god knows you are going to choose B, and god CANNOT BE WRONG, what are the chances you are going to prove god wrong by choosing A?

          "Are you denying that you have a choice in how you live your life?"
          Not at all.

          "Are you compelled by God to post your doubting comments? Are you compelled by God to love the people you do?"
          If god has foreknowledge, and cannot be wrong, yes. However, I am an atheist, just pointing out that free wil and an omniscient god are logically incompatble

          March 1, 2014 at 5:57 am |
        • MadeFromDirt

          Sam, your little test presupposes a limited reality, that God is a linear being, with a beginning and stuck in time and physicality like we are. So from the perspective of man bound in time, with a god limited in time, there would not be free will because the god would be constantly intervening to compel our choices so that they match what he foreknew. But God is not linear or limited. God created time when He created energy, matter, and space. He is infinite and eternal. Only such a being can have the power to create what He did. He sees all time. So from the actual true perspective outside of time, it is perfectly logical that creatures stuck within time were created to have choices within time and a being outside of time knows what they will be.

          It is logically incompatible for you to deny the existence of God, and then to create a false and limited god to try to prove your argument. You can't have it both ways Sam. Your logic reveals that you don't understand the true nature of God, or that you know God exists and you hate Him.

          March 1, 2014 at 10:52 am |
      • doobzz

        "Jesus has borne our sins when he died for us on the cross; he lives to make us righteous."

        God loves the smell of human sacrifice in the morning.

        February 28, 2014 at 2:01 pm |
      • sam stone

        sin is a man made concept that has no relevance outside of the religion that defines it, rainy

        your mythology only applies to your cult

        February 28, 2014 at 9:12 pm |
    • Doris

      I never saw the "Helmut" before. (OK, now I've got to do something to get the guy under Colonel Klink's face out of my mind..)

      February 28, 2014 at 2:02 pm |
      • Doris

        the guy in the middle – can't remember the character name.


        February 28, 2014 at 2:20 pm |
        • ausphor

          Sgt. Schultz, I see nothing, I hear nothing.....

          February 28, 2014 at 2:26 pm |
        • Doris

          Ah yes, thanks..lol

          February 28, 2014 at 2:28 pm |
  17. I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

    Years ago I saw a Mike Peters (Mother Goose and Grimm) comic anthology.

    Along with strip Mike Peters does a lot of political commentary. One that really struck me in his first anthology was a panel of three Jesus sitting at a table:

    1. the 'praying hands' neatly bearded Lutheran Jesus
    2. the death agony Catholic Jesus
    3. the haloed mosaic icon Orthodox Jesus

    The caption read "Will the real Jesus please stand up." It was excellent.

    February 28, 2014 at 1:06 pm |
  18. I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

    I was surprised when this story appeared yesterday on the CNN front page that it was not linked to the Belief Blog.

    "Son of God" is a Hollywood movie. Therefore it has to have a handsome leading man. Case closed. It's not like it will strive for any historical accuracy.

    It's brought to you by the same people who brought "The Bible" to cable TV – "Lightworkers Media".

    When I saw the trailer for this movie, I couldn't help thinking "I wonder how it ends." I sure hope people don't provide any spoilers.

    February 28, 2014 at 12:57 pm |
    • ausphor

      not a GOPer
      It is actually a movie taken from the ten part TV series Son of God. Just trying to make a few more bucks from the gullible by releasing it as a movie. Saw the promo, it seems to have all sorts of special effects, easy to depict miracles now a days.

      February 28, 2014 at 2:05 pm |
      • ausphor

        Correction, taken from the ten part series The Bible, you were right GOPer, sorry, got some wring info.

        February 28, 2014 at 2:09 pm |
      • ausphor

        Correction, taken from the ten part series The Bible, you were right GOPer, sorry, got some wrong info.

        February 28, 2014 at 2:09 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        From lightworkersmedia.com:

        Celebrated Emmy-nominated actress Roma Downey and her husband producer Mark Burnett launched LightWorkers Media in 2011 with the children's DVD and book series "Little Angels" and its companion "Little Angels Storybook Bible". LightWorkers Media produced the ten-hour miniseries THE BIBLE and will be producing the feature film version SON OF GOD for 20th Century Fox.

        Also produced by Hearst Entertainment Productions. Hearst owns Lifetime, A&E, HISTORY and ESPN.

        February 28, 2014 at 2:24 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        Mark Burnett is also famous for producing Survivor, The Apprentice, Are you smarter than a 5th grader? The Voice, Shark Tank etc.

        February 28, 2014 at 2:28 pm |
  19. new-man


    Luke 8:11, "Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God." (LUKE 8:4-11)

    This parable illustrates the importance of the Word of God. God's Word contains total power, but it has to be planted in our hearts and allowed to germinate before it releases that power.

    The seed is God's Word, and the types of ground are the four major categories of men's hearts. The Word was the same in each situation, but there were different results in each case because of the condition of men's hearts – not because of the Word. The Word doesn't work for everyone because not everyone will allow the Word to work. The variable in this parable is the condition of these hearts. God's Word is always the same. It has the same potential in every heart.

    Good ground doesn't just happen; it must be cultivated. This is the reason why only one out of four persons in Jesus' parable brought forth fruit. It takes a lot of time, effort, and diligence to be a fruitful Christian. The Christian life is not like a hundred-yard dash but rather a 26.2 mile marathon. It's quicker and easier to raise weeds than it is to raise tomatoes or corn.

    In this whole parable, it was the Word that produced the fruit. The ground simply gave it a place to grow. If we will simply put God's Word in our hearts, protect it, and give it priority in our lives, the Word will produce fruit of itself. Satan has deceived many people into thinking that they don't have the talents or abilities to be fruitful Christians, but they are not the ones who bring forth fruit; it's God's Word. When we protect the Word sown in our hearts, it will do the rest.


    February 28, 2014 at 12:19 pm |
    • observernow


      Does "the Word" tell Christians to CHOOSE passages that pick on gays or does "the Word" tell Christians to CHOOSE the Golden Rule? You can't have BOTH. Which is it?

      February 28, 2014 at 12:25 pm |
      • new-man

        If you see me "picking on" them or any other group, feel free to ask this question of me.
        Until such a time, I do not speak for others, including you.

        February 28, 2014 at 12:44 pm |
        • observernow


          You are giving everyone your idea of what the Bible says and how you interpret it.

          So what is your interpretation? Does "the Word" tell Christians to CHOOSE passages that pick on gays or does "the Word" tell Christians to CHOOSE the Golden Rule? You can't have BOTH. Which is it?

          February 28, 2014 at 12:49 pm |
    • otoh2

      What kind of stupid, incompetent farmer (sower) would toss seeds into thorns and rocks and expect them to flourish? If your "God" character doesn't know how to sow correctly, "he's" a dunce.

      February 28, 2014 at 12:29 pm |
    • Sungrazer

      Maybe you are being deceived by Satan into defending biblical atrocities and the real, truly omnibenevolent god is quite displeased with you.

      February 28, 2014 at 12:33 pm |
    • otoh2

      Hey new-man,

      You never did answer me the other day about exactly which Pharaoh was supposedly involved with Moses and those "plagues"...

      February 28, 2014 at 12:34 pm |
      • doobzz

        That would require evidence that the Jews were indeed enslaved in Egypt at some point in history.

        February 28, 2014 at 12:38 pm |
        • believerfred

          While you were busy looking to prove the Bible wrong the truth went over your head.
          Egypt is symbolic for the world and Pharaoh the King of that world who believes in the naturalistic things forming gods out of that which was created. The frogs etc. all of which Moses turned against Egypt were these man made gods. Israel (the people of God) were in bondage to the things of this world which included being slaves to oppressive not believers. God set them free and brought them out of the land of bondage to naturalistic things and into the promised land where God is King not man.
          Exactly what kind of evidence would you expect for what this story actually says?

          February 28, 2014 at 12:57 pm |
        • doobzz

          Oh, another "symbolic" event. Right.

          Funny how events in the bible suddenly become "symbolic" when modern technology disproves their literal possibility.

          February 28, 2014 at 1:01 pm |
        • Sungrazer


          Could you please send me a copy of the bible with the literal parts highlighted in one color and the symbolic parts highlighted in another color? Perhaps you should distribute it worldwide. I'm sure there would be complete agreement among believers in your choices.

          February 28, 2014 at 1:11 pm |
        • believerfred

          Modern technology has not proved anything in the Bible wrong. Science does not involve itself with the creator as it knows science is limited to the creation i.e. the known natural laws

          February 28, 2014 at 1:13 pm |
        • observernow


          If Fred is to do it, we also need a copy of Fred's English Dictionary. That's the book that says that "vengeance" does not mean "punishment"; "tempt" doesn't mean "tempt" in some spots: "property" can sue in civil court; "reality" means "the afterlife", etc.

          February 28, 2014 at 1:18 pm |
        • observernow


          "Modern technology has not proved anything in the Bible wrong"

          So does modern technology say that the sun and moon can suddenly STOP in their orbits for a day or two?

          February 28, 2014 at 1:21 pm |
        • Woody

          "God set them free and brought them out of the land of bondage to naturalistic things and into the promised land......"
          – believerfred

          Legend has it, it took them forty years to get from Egypt to Israel. Mrs. Moses always complained he'd NEVER stop and ask for directions.

          February 28, 2014 at 1:24 pm |
        • believerfred

          Can you do the same with your book of knowledge? Do you even know where the theory of evolution stops in its factual presentation and your fantasy begins where you extrapolate what is provable into your delusion that evolution explains the origin of man or that natural selection explains intelligence that includes awareness of the unknowable?
          Do you actually think there exists only that which can be constricted by natural laws? This has been disproven because we know and evidence points towards powerful forces that are without mass or particulate properties (i.e. naturalistic). I understand the arguments that "we don't know" this force is without mass I am just saying there is no evidence of mass an never has been to date. At this point science becomes philosophy where lack of evidence does not equal proof...............well science is exactly where you are I are when we demand evidence of God

          February 28, 2014 at 1:33 pm |
        • believerfred

          "So does modern technology say that the sun and moon can suddenly STOP in their orbits for a day or two?"
          =>and if I was to say observer when I look into your eyes time stands still does modern technology say that happened?

          February 28, 2014 at 1:37 pm |
        • doobzz

          ">and if I was to say observer when I look into your eyes time stands still does modern technology say that happened?"

          I would say you are trying to get into Observer's pants.

          February 28, 2014 at 1:43 pm |
        • observernow


          Please try hard to stay on topic and ANSWER the question this time.

          February 28, 2014 at 1:39 pm |
        • doobzz

          "Modern technology has not proved anything in the Bible wrong."

          Does the sun revolve around the earth? Does the moon give off its own light? Did the sun "stand still" while Joshua fought the battle of Jericho? Do snakes, bushes and donkeys talk? Are we all the descendants of one man and woman? Is the earth a circle? LOL.

          February 28, 2014 at 1:40 pm |
        • believerfred

          Ha! Now way could Moses take direction from that woman God have him.

          February 28, 2014 at 1:45 pm |
        • Rynomite

          Modern Technology has not proved anything in the Philosopher's Stone to be wrong!

          February 28, 2014 at 1:45 pm |
        • believerfred

          "I would say you are trying to get into Observer's pants. "
          =>No, just ask Observer she knows I prefer to skirt her issues.

          February 28, 2014 at 1:49 pm |
        • ausphor

          The Higgs boson enters a catholic church and hovers in a pew. The congregation sees it and start chatting about its presence. The priest seeing the commotion approaches the boson and asks it to leave the church. Higgs responds, "Are you sure, you can't have mass without me."
          fredie you and new-man make a good team.

          February 28, 2014 at 1:49 pm |
        • observernow


          I'm male (and not gay).

          Just something else that you are WRONG about.

          February 28, 2014 at 1:53 pm |
        • believerfred

          Great! I can use that this week at fundie school. thanks

          February 28, 2014 at 2:16 pm |
        • ausphor

          Couldn't make much sense of your other post about particles, they all have a quantum of energy that can form mass and the mass can become energy under the right conditions. Try going to the CERN web site.

          February 28, 2014 at 2:24 pm |
        • believerfred

          I was actually referring to scale invariant neutrinos where we infer neutrino presence by what is missing. In short we quantify what does not "exist". What I was getting at is we attempt to infer Gods presence by what is missing i.e. when backed into a corner God did it or in our attempts to describe God.
          Take doobzz point of the sun standing still where I cannot argue this given what we know except to say God can do anything ( I infer a non existent property). The other being like Isaiah could not describe God other than having the appearance of light or fire etc. We are as believers attempting to quantify what does not "exist". The book of Hebrews on the other hand couches this non existent property as observable by faith:
          Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

          Science points to scale invariant neutrinos using quantum mechanics while the Bible points to substance using faith as evidence. We all want to know the same thing, why do we exist and what is the purpose for existence.

          February 28, 2014 at 3:26 pm |
        • Sungrazer


          "Can you do the same with your book of knowledge?"

          You mentioned evolution so I will use it as an example. I have numerous books on evolution in my personal library. Where they present evolutionary knowledge, the passages are not symbolic. They are literal. Some ideas may turn out to be wrong, but no symbolism is used. That is not how science works.

          I am granting that some biblical passages are symbolic. But surely you realize the importance of knowing which passages are symbolic and which are literal. Unfortunately, there is a lot of disagreement among believers. And that's before we can even get out of Genesis 1! You personally seem to willing to embrace science if it (allegedly) confirms some biblical verse, but when it doesn't, "well, duh, guys, it's obviously symbolic".

          February 28, 2014 at 3:32 pm |
        • doobzz

          @ Sungrazer

          Additionally, science has no compulsion to explain away mistakes. If it turns out that our knowledge is wrong, we say, "We were wrong."

          Science never says, well, that theory is symbolic of the correct theory. It is simply discarded, as it should be.

          February 28, 2014 at 3:59 pm |
        • Sungrazer


          Thank you for saying it better than I did.

          February 28, 2014 at 4:03 pm |
        • believerfred

          Do I understand you correct in that you agree science (related to evolution theory) does not provide any evidence that would lead one to conclude "no god needed"?
          I believe we are on the same page as to the realities of scientific endeavor. Would you agree that philosophical science (a world view based on scientific discovery), naturalism and religion address areas science does not?

          I admit that I am in deep water regarding my faith because I question the literal at all points that are not grounded in evidence meeting minimum standards of scientific method where applicable (i.e. verses that require unknown natural laws are not addressable). I do not think I am arbitrary when assigning non addressable areas (you suggested I only apply science where it fits). Last weekend I was with Dr. Walter Kaiser, Jr. who has some interesting takes on the archeology of the Bible and he suggested I review some of his earlier works. In short my faith and science had again become comingled.

          That was a long way of addressing your second concern that believers are all over the place when it comes to what is literal and what is not. I was beginning to drift to a point where Adam and Eve became figurative in order to squeeze into the latest population geneticists conclusion that a population 1,000 times the size in the Garden of Eden was required. Thanks to Dr. Kaiser I am reviewing the Majesty of God in the days of Moses to see if I have gone astray.

          February 28, 2014 at 4:33 pm |
        • Sungrazer

          "Do I understand you correct in that you agree science (related to evolution theory) does not provide any evidence that would lead one to conclude "no god needed"?"

          The point I was making is that scientific knowledge is not symbolic. That is all.

          To your question, I think science as a method has tremendous explanatory power. I transitioned from a believer to a non believer in part because of this; it left god with little or nothing to do. (The idea of a god setting everything in motion doesn't excite me, nor does it excite most people.) The evidence of evolution doesn't necessarily lead to the conclusion that god is not needed. Evolution is certainly incompatible with certain religious ideas, like creationism. But, for example, theistic evolutionists do not reach the conclusion that god is not needed. Science, though, must be committed to methodological naturalism; otherwise it is not science.

          February 28, 2014 at 4:57 pm |
        • believerfred

          "I transitioned from a believer to a non believer in part because of this; it left god with little or nothing to do. (The idea of a god setting everything in motion doesn't excite me, nor does it excite most people.) "
          =>I move in the opposite direction. The more we discover through science the more immense the unknowable becomes on a macro scale and micro scale. Gravitating towards tensors in speculations as to pre big bang cosmology makes me scratch my head and ask where will this search for a unified theory end and I see no possible stopping point other than the feet of Christ. Christ spoke of love and so too Saul of Tarsus. If we do not have love what do we have. What greater experience than love, what greater example of eternity then when love captivates and time is secondary if existent at all. As to space when in love there are no boundaries at that moment limited within any known dimensions. Thus space and time become dependent on love. Jesus gets it right if math and physics are reasons to believe.

          February 28, 2014 at 6:35 pm |
    • Apollo to Zeus

      Good ground doesn't just happen;

      Yes, in fact it does.

      February 28, 2014 at 2:28 pm |
  20. highplainsparson

    This may be news to Hollywood producers, but Jesus is not handsome.

    Isaiah 53:2 NASB

    For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot,
    And like a root out of parched ground;
    He has no stately form or majesty
    That we should look upon Him,
    Nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him.

    February 28, 2014 at 12:18 pm |
    • Sungrazer

      Nice pull.

      February 28, 2014 at 12:33 pm |
    • kudlak

      Unfortunately, I have to point out that Isaiah 53 doesn't actually refer to the expected Messiah.

      February 28, 2014 at 1:38 pm |
      • Doc Vestibule

        He's not the messiah! He's a very naughty boy!

        February 28, 2014 at 2:14 pm |
        • kudlak

          Isaiah 52:13 – 53:12 describes the "servant of the Lord" as the Nation of Israel.

          February 28, 2014 at 2:28 pm |
        • derado8

          My thoughts exactly. That first pic looks like someone's "Aragorn" fan fic

          February 28, 2014 at 8:12 pm |
      • highplainsparson

        That is some crazy exegetical gymnastics you would have to do to deny that Isaiah 53 speaks of Jesus.

        February 28, 2014 at 3:57 pm |
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About this blog

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