home
RSS
Pope Francis: Church could support civil unions
Pope Francis speaks at St Peter's square on December 11, 2013.
March 5th, 2014
10:04 AM ET

Pope Francis: Church could support civil unions

By Daniel Burke, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor
[twitter-follow screen_name='BurkeCNN']

(CNN) - Pope Francis reaffirmed the Catholic Church's opposition to gay marriage on Wednesday, but suggested in a newspaper interview that it could support some types of civil unions.

The Pope reiterated the church's longstanding teaching that "marriage is between a man and a woman." However, he said, "We have to look at different cases and evaluate them in their variety."

States, for instance, justify civil unions as a way to provide economic security to cohabitating couples, the Pope said in a wide-ranging interview published Wednesday in Corriere della Seraan Italian daily. State-sanctioned unions are thus driven by the need to ensure rights like access to health care, Francis added.

A number of Catholic bishops have supported civil unions for same-sex couples as an alternative to marriage, including Pope Francis when he was Archbishop of Buenos Aires in 2010, according to reports in National Catholic Reporter and The New York Times.

Behind closed doors, pope supported civil unions in Argentina, activist says

But Wednesday's comments are "the first time a Pope has indicated even tentative acceptance of civil unions," according to Catholic News Service.

Later on Wednesday, a Vatican spokesman sought to clarify the Pope's remarks.

"The Pope did not choose to enter into debates about the delicate matter of gay civil unions," said the Rev. Thomas Rosica, a consultant to the Vatican press office.

"In his response to the interviewer, he emphasized the natural characteristic of marriage between one man and one woman, and on the other hand, he also spoke about the obligation of the state to fulfill its responsibilities towards its citizens."

"We should not try to read more into the Pope’s words than what has been stated in very general terms," Rosica added.

Pope Francis, who marks his first year in office on March 13, has sought to set a more tolerant tone for his 1 billion-member church and suggested that a broad range of topics are at least open for discussion.

In January, the Pope recalled a little girl in Buenos Aires who told her teacher that she was sad because "my mother's girlfriend doesn't like me."

"The situation in which we live now provides us with new challenges which sometimes are difficult for us to understand," the Pope told leaders of religious orders, adding that the church "must be careful not to administer a vaccine against faith to them."

The Vatican later denied that those comments signaled an opening toward same-sex unions.

Last June, Francis famously refused to judge gay priests in comments that ricocheted around the world. He has also said that the church should not "interfere" in the spiritual lives of gays and lesbians.

Pope Francis' greatest hits of 2013

Support of same-sex unions of any type is fiercely contested by many Catholic church leaders.

In Wednesday's interview, Francis also addressed several other controversial issues, including the Catholic Church's ban on contraception, the role of women and the devastating clergy sexual abuse scandal.

On contraception, the Pope praised Pope Paul VI for having the "courage" to "go against the majority" when restating the ban in 1968. But, Francis said, the church must also be "merciful" and "attentive to concrete situations."

Contraception and church's ban on divorced Catholics receiving holy communion, will likely be addressed at major meetings of Catholic bishops in Rome in 2014 and 2015.

“We must give a response. But to do so, we must reflect much in depth,” the Pope said Wednesday.

On the role of women in the church, an issue of particular concern to Catholics in the United States, the Pope hinted that changes could be in the works.

"Women must be present in all of the places where decisions are taken," Francis said in the newspaper interview, but the church must consider more than "functional" roles for women. To that end, Catholic leaders are engaged in "deep reflection" on women's role in the church, he said.

On the sexual abuse of children by Catholic clergy, a scandal that has rocked the church in the United States, the Pope said the abuse has left "very deep wounds" on victims.

In response, the church has done more than other institutions to be open and transparent about sexual abuse by its employees, Francis said. “But the Church is the only one to be attacked."

A United Nations panel criticized Catholic leaders last month in a hard-hitting report on clergy sexual abuse.

The report said the Vatican "has not acknowledged the extent of the crimes committed, has not taken the necessary measures to address cases of child sexual abuse and to protect children, and has adopted policies and practices which have led to the continuation of the abuse by and the impunity of the perpetrators.”

The Vatican said it would study the U.N. report.

Kick out those who sexually abuse children, U.N. panel tells Vatican

On Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, who has surprised church-watchers with public appearances after saying he would live a cloistered life in retirement, Francis said he considers his predecessor a "wise grandfather."

"The Pope Emeritus is not a statue in a museum," Pope Francis said. Rather, the two men have decided that Benedict should participate in the church's public life rather than live a shuttered life.

"I thought about grandparents who with their wisdom, their advice, strengthen families and don't deserve to end up in an old folks home," Francis said.

Finally, he may sometimes wear a cape, but don't call Pope Francis a Superman, the popular pontiff said.

"To paint the Pope as a sort of Superman, a kind of star, seems offensive to me," Francis told Corriere della Sera. "The Pope is a man who laughs, cries, sleeps soundly and has friends like everyone else. A normal person."

Earlier this year, graffiti depicting a muscle-bound and flying Francis appeared on walls near Vatican City, but the Pope said Wednesday that he doesn't like the "mythology" surrounding his papacy, which marks its first anniversary on March 13.

For instance, Francis debunked the idea that he sneaks out of the Vatican at night to feed the homeless.

"It never occurred to me," he said.

(CNN's Delia Gallagher assisted in translating Pope Francis' remarks from the Italian.) 

- CNN Religion Editor

Filed under: Catholic Church • Christianity • Culture wars • Discrimination • Gay marriage • Gay rights • Pope Benedict XVI • Pope Francis • Vatican

soundoff (3,591 Responses)
  1. Lucifer's Evil Twin

    LET's Religiosity Law #10 – If you believe any of the christian ass-clowns on television (or the radio) are “helping” you get closer to Jesus and not doing it to get your money, but also have the capacity to be shocked when their misdeeds/lies eventually come to light… well, you are an imbecile. This law is immutable.

    March 13, 2014 at 9:57 am |
    • ausphor

      LET
      Jimmy Swaggart needed the cash to pay the h00kers, the congregation was understanding.

      March 13, 2014 at 10:04 am |
      • Lucifer's Evil Twin

        LET's Religiosity Law #11 – “From there to here, and here to there, funny things are everywhere.”

        March 13, 2014 at 10:11 am |
      • Doris

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=05GAeQ45YxU

        March 13, 2014 at 10:17 am |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          Hilariously disturbing and sad... reminds me of the Steve Martin movie 'Leap of Faith'

          March 13, 2014 at 11:19 am |
        • ausphor

          LET
          Martin's best performance, in my opinion, such a true portrayal of the snake oil salesman.

          March 13, 2014 at 11:27 am |
  2. ausphor

    Having read through the comments I find that Vic, new-man, Peace....., believerfred, Made From Dirt, Jim, etc. have one thing in common. They are addicted to the idea that their belief in jesus is their salvation. This belief gives them a feel good, warm and fuzzy feeling that lets them dismiss any transgressions they have committed or may commit against their fellow man, a get out of jail free card. No matter how foolish their myth is, it is their addiction crutch, Zeus bless them one and all. Any contradiction in the myth can be explained away by the oh so many apologists sites, many of which beg for a donation.
    BTW people are not born sinners, what ever that is supposed to mean, it is just a guilt trip that the scammers like to maintain, keep the sheep in line, groveling for forgiveness and maintaining the princes of the churches high lifestyle.

    March 13, 2014 at 9:33 am |
  3. kevinite

    28 So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.

    Hebrews 9:28 KJV

    March 13, 2014 at 1:49 am |
    • fintronics

      More quotes from mythology.........

      March 13, 2014 at 8:05 am |
      • kevinite

        That's your opinion. Key word "opinion".

        March 13, 2014 at 8:28 am |
        • igaftr

          At least his opinion is better than you posting the opinion of someone from the often wrong bible.

          March 13, 2014 at 8:47 am |
        • kevinite

          And that is your opinion as well, which no matter how you slice it doesn't make it any more validated truth than my own beliefs.

          March 13, 2014 at 9:42 am |
        • igaftr

          It is not opinion that the bible is wrong in many places. It is fact.
          Noah's myth never happened, you can't tell if your wife is unfaithful by having her drink dust mixed with magic water, and you can't make striped goats by having a mating pair of goats stare at striped objects, for a few examples.

          i hope you join us in reality.

          March 13, 2014 at 10:05 am |
        • kudlak

          kevinite
          Isn't the Bible just a collection of positive opinion and stories about a particular god?

          March 13, 2014 at 10:12 am |
        • Doris

          Sure there are lots of opinions, like those of one of the leading New Testament scholar Bart Ehrman.

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=twX5HlBDZEI
          Published on Jun 22, 2013

          Bart Ehrman is an American New Testament scholar, currently the James A. Gray Distinguished Professor of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Ehrman is a leading New Testament scholar, having written and edited over twenty-five books, including three college textbooks. He currently serves as co-editor of the series New Testament Tools, Studies, and Documents (E. J. Brill), co-editor-in-chief for the journal Vigiliae Christianae, and on several other editorial boards for journals and monographs. He received his PhD (magna cum laude) from Princeton Theological Seminary in 1985.

          During his graduate studies, Ehrman became convinced that there are contradictions and discrepancies in the biblical manuscripts that could not be harmonized or reconciled and became an agnostic.

          March 13, 2014 at 10:15 am |
        • SeaVik

          If the bible being a myth is an opinion, than gravity is also an opinion. It is my opinion that I can't fly. If your opinion is that I can fly, sorry, but that's not an equally valid "opinion". We have endless evidence showing that the bible is a collection of myths, so if you ignore that evidence, well, you're an idiot.

          March 13, 2014 at 10:55 am |
        • kevinite

          igaftr,

          You mean to tell me that miracles cannot be proven and that in of itself means that it didn't happen? The problem is that a lack of evidence doesn't mean that it is evidence in of itself. This is especially the case when it comes to miracles since miracles defy the laws of nature or at least what we understand to be the laws of nature. What it all boils down to is that we all make our own conclusions or beliefs or opinions or whatever based on what evidence there is available and by our own experiences and this includes forming the opinion that since there is no evidence available that something did happen then I'll conclude that it didn't happen, even though there is no evidence to really prove that it didn't happen. Either way your conclusion or my conclusion are conclusions that are based on belief; not actually proven truth just like you can't prove that there is no deity out there who does not want to be made known but would rather have us develop our own belief and faith in said deity.

          March 13, 2014 at 10:56 am |
        • Doris

          "You mean to tell me that miracles cannot be proven and that in of itself means that it didn't happen? "

          I think what's more at issue is a problem for some after thousands of years not being able to properly identify spam.

          March 13, 2014 at 11:05 am |
        • kevinite

          So Doris,

          How does the viewpoints of certain scholars, key word "certain" noting in their conclusions that there are some discrepancies in the writings of men, writings that have been rewritten over and over again and translated over and over again prove that those writings were never divinely inspired in any way shape or form in the first place?

          March 13, 2014 at 11:10 am |
        • kevinite

          Doris,

          Again your opinion that it is spam it just that an opinion, that so far you haven't proven to be anything otherwise.

          March 13, 2014 at 11:13 am |
        • igaftr

          newman
          "Either way your conclusion or my conclusion are conclusions that are based on belief; "
          False, my conclusions are based ini science and reality, verifiable proven.

          YOUR conclusions are based on belief and wishful thinking.

          March 13, 2014 at 11:15 am |
        • Doris

          "prove that those writings were never divinely inspired in any way shape or form in the first place?"

          do you look at each piece of email in your spam folder to prove it it's spam?

          you may have missed the short bio on Ehrman there, for instance, where it says he's now and agnostic. I doubt you would find Bart trying to "prove" anything. Highlighting the obvious is not attempting a proof.

          March 13, 2014 at 11:22 am |
        • SeaVik

          "we all make our own conclusions or beliefs or opinions or whatever based on what evidence there is available"

          No Kevin, that's exactly the point. Some of us believe things based on evidence (atheists) and some believe things based on faith (a lack of evidence – religious people). These are not equally valid positions.

          March 13, 2014 at 11:26 am |
        • kevinite

          So Ifgtar,

          You can actually prove that there is an omnipotent being out there who does not want to be made known but would rather have us develop our own faith in said being , perhaps a being who may even go to the extremes of purposefully withholding evidence of certain miraculous events for that goal of faith development, then by all means go right ahead. I'm wondering why you didn't present that irrefutable proof to begin with.

          March 13, 2014 at 11:26 am |
        • kevinite

          Sea Vik,

          What evidence is there that there is no God who does not want to be made known?

          March 13, 2014 at 11:29 am |
        • igaftr

          No, I have no proof of any omnipotent beings anywhere, never said I did.

          I said the bible is often wrong, and gave three examples of things that can be proven wrong.

          YOU are trying to put words in my mouth, changing the discussion.

          March 13, 2014 at 11:30 am |
        • kevinite

          igaftr,

          By the way I'm not newman.

          March 13, 2014 at 11:31 am |
        • In Santa We Trust

          kevin, What makes more sense to you – not believing in something for which there is no objective evidence or believing in something for which there is no objective evidence?

          March 13, 2014 at 11:33 am |
        • igaftr

          "igaftr,

          By the way I'm not newman."
          Noted, but a distinction without a difference.

          March 13, 2014 at 11:37 am |
        • kevinite

          Igaftr,

          You realize that the examples you gave in the Bible deal with the belief of a God who does not want to be made known by us but would rather have us develop our faith in that God, so where in those examples has the irrefutable proof that they did not occur?

          March 13, 2014 at 11:39 am |
        • observernow

          kevinite

          so where in those examples has the irrefutable proof that they did not occur at the discretion of Zeus or the Great Pumpkin?

          March 13, 2014 at 11:44 am |
        • SeaVik

          "What evidence is there that there is no God who does not want to be made known?"

          What would that evidence be exactly? It is exactly the same evidence we have that there is no Tooth Fairy, no Santa Claus, no unicorns, etc. Ie, there is zero evidence to believe those things exist. Do you believe in those things as well since we can't prove they don't exist? It's absurd to believe in a figment of someone's imagination with no supporting evidence and even more ridiculous to suggest your position is on equal footing as mine.

          March 13, 2014 at 11:44 am |
        • igaftr

          "You realize that the examples you gave in the Bible deal with the belief of a God who does not want to be made known by us but would rather have us develop our faith in that God"

          No the examples I gave were from stories written by men, that did not happen based on science that disproves the possibility.

          Do you realize that your god, and the belief in same are based on a book made up by men and there is no sign of any gods, anywhere? And you claiming to know what god wants or his intentions are pure speculation, with no basis in any observable reality?

          March 13, 2014 at 11:49 am |
        • kevinite

          Well Santa,

          You might think that is logical to conclude that since there is no conclusive evidence that there is a God that there is no God. I see it as it being illogical to conclude that there is no God for the very same reason; that there is no conclusive evidence of it. That it may just be logical to be open to the possibility that there may be a God out there and that just because you don't see something out there doesn't mean that there really is nothing out there.

          March 13, 2014 at 11:53 am |
        • kevinite

          igaftr,

          First of all I didn't say that I knew. I said that I believe. Second of all the so called evidence you gave ultimately doesn't really prove the validity or invalidity of the Bible. That ultimate what you have is same thing that I have which is a belief.

          March 13, 2014 at 11:58 am |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          "writings that have been rewritten over and over again and translated over and over again prove that those writings were never divinely inspired in any way shape or form in the first place?"

          It doesn't, but it is not a reasonable conclusion to believe they were inspired by a divinity. What exactly would lead you to conclude they were?

          March 13, 2014 at 12:03 pm |
        • the0g0to0the0t

          I would be willing to bet that most atheists don't believe there absolutely is no god (that would be an assertion) but I think what many of us believe is that it is more logical to not believe in things UNTIL sufficient evidence is presented either way.

          Otherwise you would have to say that you believe in Zeus, Santa, Bigfoot, etc. until it was disproven. And I don't think anyone actually believes that way.

          March 13, 2014 at 12:05 pm |
        • kevinite

          Well Sea Vik,

          You have a point there is no evidence of the tooth fairy or Santa Claus nor is there evidence that there no tooth fairy or Santa Claus either that it all boils down to matter of belief. You think it is ridiculous to believe in the tooth fairy and in Santa Claus, and just like that you don't believe in God, and that is your belief and I certainly have no way of disproving your belief that there is no God. But the thing is that your belief is just that a belief no matter how you slice it. And comparing a belief in God to belief in the tooth fairy does not escape the key point which is that your conclusion is based on belief.

          March 13, 2014 at 12:17 pm |
        • kevinite

          Well Blessed Cheesemaker,

          To paraphrase Socrates to know the good is to do the good. For me that includes practicing what I understand in the teachings and also through personal prayer inquiring whether or not those teachings are in fact true. Doing those things at least helps my belief.

          March 13, 2014 at 12:26 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          You are making the mistake of thinking all beliefs are equal.

          Believing that the earth is flat is a belief.

          Believing that the earth is round is also a belief.

          One is objectively more reasonable than the other.

          March 13, 2014 at 12:28 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          That did not answer the question.

          "also through personal prayer inquiring whether or not those teachings are in fact true."

          Prayer is not a reliable path to what is true.

          March 13, 2014 at 12:34 pm |
        • kevinite

          Doris,

          Dr. Erhman's stance is just that, his stance. How does the stance of one scholar actually be considered irrefutable proof? For that matter how does even the stance of hundred scholars be considered irrefutable proof it there is some valid questioning of of that stance not to mention the possibility that there may be additional evidence out there that could challenge that stance. To rely on the conclusion of certain scholars as being the irrefutable proof is really jumping the gun here. Even most Bible scholars believe that their schools of thought are not set in stone and can be subject to change.

          March 13, 2014 at 12:39 pm |
        • kevinite

          Cheesy,

          Of course it's not a conclusive answer. I never said I knew with having the irrefutable proof. I said that I believe. Just like I believe that in some cases to really know something it has to be experienced on a personal level and it cannot be through any other means much like that if someone was asking you what salt tastes like and that person never tasted salt before. How are you going to explain how it tastes like in any way that is more effective than encouraging that person to actually taste the salt for himself or herself?

          March 13, 2014 at 12:49 pm |
        • Doris

          kev: " To rely on the conclusion of certain scholars as being the irrefutable proof "

          And again, you missed my point – I'm not claiming any irrefutable proof and I doubt seriously that Ehrman is either, otherwise he would not consider himself an agnostic. As for myself, remember, mainstream atheism, sometimes called agnostic atheism does not make absolute claims involving deities. In other words, for me, there is always a logical possibility that a deity could exist, even the Abrahamic God, but I find it highly unlikely (especially for the Abrahamic type) given evidence that has been provided so far that I've seen or read about.

          March 13, 2014 at 1:00 pm |
        • kevinite

          Well Doris,

          Like I said you can form your own conclusion based on the evidence or the lack thereof. The point I was making was that your conclusion is in fact your own opinion and nothng more than that.

          March 13, 2014 at 1:07 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          kevin
          I do think that is logical to withhold judgement since there is no conclusive evidence. I do not conclude that there is no god, just that without evidence why jump to conclusions, no matter how comforting they are.
          The evidence we do have shows that the personal gods of religions do not exist as described by those religions.
          Pre Big Bang a god is a possibility but one of a number only limited by our imagination.
          So I stand by my original question about which makes more sense.

          March 13, 2014 at 1:07 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          "Salt" is a real thing. Tasting salt is a real experience that can be compared to others experience with the same. People who taste salt report the same type of sensation. That is not even close to what we find with anything metaphyisical. The experiences are all over the map. You are comparing apples to coconuts.

          March 13, 2014 at 1:08 pm |
        • kevinite

          Well Cheesy,

          Go ahead and explain what salt tastes like. I would like to see how your comparison approach will give a more accurate picture than actually tasting the salt first hand.

          March 13, 2014 at 1:13 pm |
        • joey3467

          There is a chance that their is a god that created the universe, walked away, and has never been seen or heard from since. The Christian god, however, cannot exist as described in the Bible, and all one has to do to realize this is read the Bible.

          March 13, 2014 at 1:20 pm |
        • kevinite

          Well Santa,

          Just like I explained to Doris you can form your own opinion based on your own observations and experiences and I really have no way to prove your stance is false, but on the flip side neither can you prove my beliefs to be incorrect and in the end it's all a matter of belief.

          March 13, 2014 at 1:20 pm |
        • kevinite

          Really joey,

          How does just reading the Bible prove the God of the Bible does not exist because I also read the Bible along with other religious texts, and yet somehow I've come to a different conclusion than you, and I'm not the only one in that camp.

          March 13, 2014 at 1:25 pm |
        • Doris

          kev: "Just like I explained to Doris you can form your own opinion based on your own....."

          And again, "explaining to.... for something I didn't claim is acting like you're teaching something new. And you're not teaching something new here. I take it as a deflection away from you're jumping to the wrong conclusion about claim versus opinion..

          March 13, 2014 at 1:27 pm |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          My point was that the "salt" analogy is terrible, and that point holds.

          March 13, 2014 at 1:30 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          kevin, Except that there is no evidence to support your belief and plenty to negate it. Do you believe alien abductee stories?

          March 13, 2014 at 1:32 pm |
        • kevinite

          Okay Doris,

          Even though I was bringing up the point about opinion right from the beginning of this thread if you are so insistent that I'm using the point of opinion to deflect my other stance whatever that stance was then fine, whatever. Any-who, I need to get ready for work, but it's been fun.

          March 13, 2014 at 1:38 pm |
        • kevinite

          Well there is one more thing. Whatever you say cheesy...whatever you say.

          March 13, 2014 at 1:41 pm |
  4. colin31714

    So, still looking forward to Dalahast explaining;

    (i) how God listens to his prayers but doesn't read his mind

    (ii) how God answers his prayers but does not intervene to alter what would otherwise be the course of history; and

    (iii) how he will go to heaven after he dies and be happily there forever, but he is not immortal.

    What he is no doubt struggling with is confronting the sheer implausibility of his beliefs in simple language. Once you strip Christianity of all its flowery nomenclature and describe its beliefs in common parlance, they reveal themselves to be little more than childish nonsense, no more sophisticated that the idle wishes of crayon drawing infants.

    Take the very common belief that the Judeo-Christian god answers prayers. So, I pray, for example, that my wife will recover from cancer. First, the Judeo-Christian god must know of my prayer. Unless he is reading my mind, how can he? Then, he has to decide whether or not to answer it. Assuming he decides to do so, he then has to alter my wife's fundamental cell biochemistry to make her cancer go away. He thereby alters what would otherwise be the course of human history (i.e. she would otherwise die).

    Now, if I said, "God answers my prayers," nobody would bat an eyelid. But, if I said "The creator of the Universe reads my mind and, if he is so minded, will intervene to alter what would otherwise be the course of human history to meet my wishes" people would think I was a childish fool. But, that is exactly what must happen for prayers to be answered.

    The usual cop out for the Christians is to retreat to mysticism and say things like, "I don't know how prayer works, but I know it does." Which is tantamount to saying, "I believe in the three sided polygon that results from joining three dots with straight lines, but don't try to tell me I believe in triangles."

    March 12, 2014 at 11:53 pm |
  5. Doris

    "Properly read, the Bible is the most potent force for atheism ever conceived." - Isaac Asimov

    "It ain't the parts of the Bible that I can't understand that bother me, it is the parts that I do understand" - Mark Twain

    "The Way to see by Faith is to shut the Eye of Reason." - Benjamin Franklin

    "The fact that a believer is happier than a skeptic is no more to the point than the fact that a drunken man is happier than a sober one." - George Bernard Shaw

    "I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours." - Stephen Henry Roberts

    "So far as I can remember, there is not one word in the Gospels in praise of intelligence" - Bertrand Russell

    "Why should I allow that same God to tell me how to raise my kids, who had to drown His own?" - Robert G. Ingersoll

    "[If] the nature of... government [were] a subordination of the civil to the ecclesiastical power, I [would] consider it as desperate for long years to come. Their steady habits [will] exclude the advances of information, and they [will] seem exactly where they [have always been]. And there [the] clergy will always keep them if they can. [They] will follow the bark of liberty only by the help of a tow-rope." - Thomas Jefferson

    "I almost shudder at the thought of alluding to the most fatal example of the abuses of grief which the history of mankind has preserved – the Cross. Consider what calamities that engine of grief has produced! With the rational respect that is due to it, knavish priests have added prostitutions of it, that fill or might fill the blackest and bloodiest pages of human history." - John Adams, in a letter to Thomas Jefferson

    “The problem with religion, because it's been sheltered from criticism, is that it allows people to believe en masse what only idiots or lunatics could believe in isolation.” - Sam Harris

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-i3mX0YRrjM

    March 12, 2014 at 10:58 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      “The problem with religion, because it's been sheltered from criticism, is that it allows people to believe en masse what only idiots or lunatics could believe in isolation.” – Sam Harris

      Re-using that... thanks Doris.

      March 13, 2014 at 9:47 am |
  6. dandintac

    Does anyone know what's going on with the CNN Belief Blog?

    There have been no new articles since 3/9 (How to Really Measure the Francis Effect), and that's an unusually long time for no new articles. There are 170 comments–an unusually low number. I cannot post a comment on this article, and I cannot reply to any article on this, although my ability to comment on others has not been impacted.

    Is someone on vacation? Technical glitches? Are they about to shut it down? Does anyone know?

    March 12, 2014 at 9:57 pm |
    • Akira

      From what I understand, a poster wrote a post that was particularly offensive and the editor disabled comments.
      It isn't out of the realm of possibility to go 3-4 days without posting a new article. It has happened before.

      March 12, 2014 at 10:05 pm |
    • Vic

      http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2014/03/05/pope-francis-church-could-support-civil-unions/comment-page-15/#comment-2961545

      March 12, 2014 at 10:19 pm |
    • otoh2

      Yes, it seems as if Daniel Burke removed several posts and disabled comments on that article here. Maybe he wants comments to be made on the general CNN article that is his extended piece on the subject. You can link to it at the end of the article where it says, "Show More" or "Full Article".

      March 12, 2014 at 10:51 pm |
    • Salero21

      I think that is obvious to men of reason and reasonable men that atheism is Total stupidity. That may be why some comments have been deleted or disabled for some articles. After all even in the most liberal Hollywood of all places, atheists are not the center of attraction anymore. However the hom-ose-xual lobby still has a hold in the handle and much influence there. Which is nothing new or strange to the place.

      March 12, 2014 at 10:52 pm |
      • realbuckyball

        So... you're gay, Salero21. Anyone THAT obsessed with it has a serious problem.
        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8772014

        March 12, 2014 at 11:25 pm |
      • TruthPrevails1

        "atheists are not the center of attraction anymore"

        Here let me correct that for you: Theists are not the center of attraction anymore.
        I know that hurts you but it doesn't take a genius to realize that on every issue where christians try to step in, they are being pushed back. The LGBT issue is one you're losing; discriminating against Atheists is one you're losing; you've already lost the abortion issue and the right to own slaves; you've lost the ability to keep women quiet. Not too many more years before christianity will be viewed for the hateful bigoted cult it truly is and be pushed to the back shelves of history. There is a solution if you don't want that to happen-don't use the internet; allow your children to use the internet or get an education. You can try to slow the hands of time and scream your silly little rants but you're losing.

        March 13, 2014 at 5:04 am |
      • fintronics

        Salero...... embarrassing youself again I see?

        March 13, 2014 at 8:09 am |
        • fintronics

          "yourself"

          March 13, 2014 at 8:09 am |
      • igaftr

        "I think that is obvious to men of reason and reasonable men"

        As if you were one.

        March 13, 2014 at 12:34 pm |
    • otoh2

      dandintac,

      Oh, another thought - just in case you know about that full article but see no comment section after it. The Disqus comment sections started giving me fits the other night with my FireFox browser, although it worked with IE. I finally figured out that I needed to clear my FireFox internet cache manually, since the automatic clearing wasn't happening for some reason.

      March 12, 2014 at 11:12 pm |
  7. Salero21

    Bestiality and hom-ose-xua-lity are 2 forms of abnormal and anti-natural behavior/practices against the natural order of Creation. Both are perversions, both are anti-natural.

    Idolatry was in the past and is in the present a$$ociated to hom-ose-xua-lity.

    Now, if Adulterers, Fornicators, rapists, the other perverts are NOT going to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Then; What make hom-ose-xuals believe or even think that they are going to make it?

    Do not deceive yourselves!! Men of reason and reasonable men are not being deceived by the Total stupidity of atheism. Not even in Hollywood of all places. Though they are being deceived by the hom-ose-xuals and their Idolaters evolutionists friends. With friends like that; who needs enemies?

    March 12, 2014 at 9:26 pm |
    • meatheist

      Atheist beware! This guy is serious. Our favorite religious rite, jellyfish fornicating while juggling a rattlesnake and daring it to bite us, is at risk. Oh, I forgot the rattlesnake thing is a Christian practice. Guess we'll have to be satisfied with putting live scorpions in our mouths while sucking on bull pe-nis...That's more idolatrous anyway, I think.

      March 12, 2014 at 9:48 pm |
      • Salero21

        Your ignorance which is the Foundation of all your prejudices is very obvious. Your fanaticism is driving you insane and the Total stupidity of atheism is complete in you. You're completely Lost.

        I once was lost too but Christ Jesus found me and I found him. You can find Him too and He'll take you out of the miry mud in which you are swaddling.

        March 12, 2014 at 10:08 pm |
        • observernow

          Salero21,

          It's surprising to see you back again after you made a TOTAL FOOL of yourself yesterday when you showed your LACK of KNOWLEDGE of the Bible. Maybe you'll do some thinking next time so you won't be so DIMWITTED and call people "liars" when it was you who was LYING.

          March 12, 2014 at 10:12 pm |
        • Salero21

          @obervernow not observing neither observant.

          Am I or are we in the Blog, to suppose that you do have "knowledge" of the Bible? Really!! 😀 😀 😀 HAHAHA!!!

          Prove me wrong or else admit that atheism is Total stupidity. Atheists are extremely hypocritical compulsive pathetic and pathological liars and you're a prime example of that. Actually you may well be the Paradigm of hypocrites and compulsive pathological lying atheists. Since all you have done above was bark like a rabid dog, but proving me wrong or a liar is something that you neither your daddy the devil can do!! 😉 😀 Are you a child of the devil or the devil's child?

          March 12, 2014 at 10:42 pm |
        • observernow

          observernow,

          It's good to see that you didn't try to make a rebuttal to the FACT that you made a COMPLETE FOOL of yourself last night because of your lack of knowledge of what the Bible says. Now work on your LYING.

          March 12, 2014 at 10:47 pm |
        • observernow

          correction:

          Salero21, regarding your response to observernow:

          It's good to see that you didn't try to make a rebuttal to the FACT that you made a COMPLETE FOOL of yourself last night because of your lack of knowledge of what the Bible says. Now work on your LYING.

          March 12, 2014 at 10:49 pm |
        • Salero21

          @observernow howling like a wolf.

          Keep barking like a dog, howling like a wolf, squealing like swine and bleating like a goat. That's all you can do. You can't prove me wrong, you don't know the Bible. Are you a child of the devil or just the devil's child?

          The Bible is Clear on Idolatry, Unbelief (atheism), Hom-ose-xua-lity and hom-ose.xuals. Not even the effeminate is going to enter the kingdom of God. Though in this world they may be in the membership even the leadership of some Apostates churches and religions like that of the Roman papists, or have influences and accomplices/friends in the highest post of Governments.

          That's just the way the world is, but the Kingdom of Heaven is OF Heaven not of this world.

          March 12, 2014 at 11:03 pm |
        • observernow

          Salero21,

          I quoted what God said and you said it was a lie.

          So was the Bible LYING or God LYING?

          OOOOOOPS.

          March 12, 2014 at 11:11 pm |
        • Salero21

          @observernow squealing,

          Keep barking, bleating, howling and squealing!! 😀 😀 That's all you can do. Are you a child of the devil or just the devil's child?

          March 12, 2014 at 11:19 pm |
        • realbuckyball

          Hey idiot. It's "wallowing". Not "swaddling". LOLOL.
          Please continue to make a complete fool of yourself.

          March 13, 2014 at 12:35 am |
        • fintronics

          The moron is strong in this one.

          March 13, 2014 at 8:11 am |
    • realbuckyball

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090616122106.htm
      This is 100% false. Same s'ex behaviors exist all across nature in every specie on the planet.
      Salero is gay. People that are obsessed with what others do, and ho'mophobic, have been proven to be latent gays.
      (google the NIH study on ho'mophobia).
      The check out David Pizarro at Cornell U. He has an explanation for why people find things "icky".

      March 12, 2014 at 10:46 pm |
      • realbuckyball

        BTW Salero,
        If I have an event for which I have as good or better evidence than there is for the resurrection of Jesus, do you agree to accept it ?

        March 12, 2014 at 10:48 pm |
      • Salero21

        Your comment is one big piece of Evidence of what I've been saying all along. Atheism is Total stupidity. Atheists are in fact extremely hypocritical, compulsive, pathetic and pathological liars.

        Human beings, mankind was Created in the hierarchies of Creation above animals and all other creatures on earth. Man was Created in the beginning in the image and likeness of God the Creator. Not like animals. It is atheism and its partners systems evolutionism and Idolatry that brings man below the level of animals. That's why you see an animal doing something and want to do like them.

        The Bible speaks of this when it says: 2nd. Pe. 2:22 It has happened to them according to the true proverb, "A DOG RETURNS TO ITS OWN VOMIT," and, "A sow, after washing, [returns] to wallowing in the mire."

        March 12, 2014 at 11:14 pm |
        • realbuckyball

          So you don't accept the challenge ?
          .. It's hard to read through all your bs. You're actually afraid to accept the challenge I offered.

          March 12, 2014 at 11:27 pm |
        • realbuckyball

          The Bible also tells parent to stone their disobedient children to death. Did you murder your disobedient children like the Babble told you ? Are they buried in the basement ?

          March 12, 2014 at 11:29 pm |
    • Woody

      Salero21, I think you watched the movie "Carrie" too many times. You preach exactly like Carrie's mother did in the movie. Any broken mirrors in your house?

      March 13, 2014 at 7:25 am |
    • kudlak

      Salero21
      Overwhelmingly, having multiple mating partners appears to be most prevalent in the natural world, especially for primates. Wouldn't monogamy be "anti-natural" for our species, then?

      March 13, 2014 at 10:36 am |
  8. Salero21

    Bestiality and hom-ose-xua-lity are 2 forms of abnormal and anti-natural behavior/practices against the natural order of Creation. Both are perversions, both are anti-natural.

    Adultery and fornication, though sins that can and did carry capital punishment in God's Law and in many civilizations and cultures past and present. Are SINS that are NOT against nature not anti-natural. It is natural and Normal for man and woman to be attracted and find each other attractive. It is SIN however for a married man or woman to take it to the physical.

    In Christ New Law, it is even SIN to Lust, desire, think or plan to commit the Sin. However to commit adultery and/or fornication though Sinful and the cause of Eternal Perdition are not Sins against nature, but sins against the fellow human being.

    March 12, 2014 at 9:12 pm |
    • realbuckyball

      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090616122106.htm
      This is 100% false. Same s'ex behaviors exist all across nature in every specie on the planet.
      Salero is gay. People that are obsessed with what others do, and ho'mophobic, have been proven to be latent gays.
      (google the NIH study on ho'mophobia).
      The check out David Pizarro at Cornell U. He has an explanation for why people find things "icky".

      March 12, 2014 at 11:06 pm |
  9. joeyy1

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b_F9nIps46w

    March 12, 2014 at 9:02 pm |
  10. Salero21

    Now in their complete and Total absence of the most basic common sense, which makes atheism, evolutionism and Idolatry Total stupidity. Atheists and their hom-ose-xuals friends fail miserably to understand that any and all abnormal and anti-natural behavior carries in and within itself its' own consequences. Go against nature and nature itself will come back at you in force. And that is according to God's Plan.

    If Adulterers, Fornicators, Rapists among others se*xual sinners DO NOT enter the kingdom of heaven then; What makes them believe of think for even a second that they, among other perverts are going to make it?

    March 12, 2014 at 8:55 pm |
    • doobzz

      What a snore.

      March 12, 2014 at 10:15 pm |
  11. Salero21

    Well, well, but of course atheists, evolutionists and idolaters will find common ground with hom-ose-xuals and vice-versa. Nothing new under the sun, just as it was in Sodom and Gomorrah. Idolatry, since then has been closely link to many forms of perversions, abnormal and anti-natural behavior and lifestyles. Atheists of course, since their belief system is that there is no God, then in their corrupt and perverted "logic" there are not absolute moral standards to adhere to. No surprise in any of that at all.

    The apostle Paul wrote to the Corinthians in his first letter: 1st. Co. 6:9,10 9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor hom-ose-xuals,
    10 nor thieves, nor [the] covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God.

    March 12, 2014 at 8:43 pm |
    • doobzz

      Salero21 is obsessed with what others do in the privacy of their own bedrooms. No doubt due to the lack of anything interesting happening in his own.

      March 12, 2014 at 10:18 pm |
    • fintronics

      Salero = warning.... warning ....moron alert... moron alert..

      March 13, 2014 at 8:13 am |
  12. Peaceadvocate2014

    Joey,

    By saying h0mos.exuallity is an illness, i know it is not a popular thing to say. It offends gay people thinking its their fault, their parents, ancestors or societies but it may be true.

    It is not to degradr gayd but to look at ourselves see if we are partly to blame. Instead of diverting blame to God or jave science prove its not our fault. Again, coz its convinient to blame others. Its our culture.

    How do you define gays? Is it being soft spoken? Skinny? Single? Undesirable to the opposite s.ex? Acceptability? Non-violent? If so, it is wrong. You do not have to azzume a girl just coz you are born differently. Same applies with girls.

    We have differences at birth. Human nature. Some say these diffferences are inequalities but we have to toleratr our inequalities for a better future.

    March 12, 2014 at 6:52 pm |
    • Peaceadvocate2014

      Teachings of God.

      March 12, 2014 at 7:07 pm |
    • myweightinwords

      It is NOT an illness. There is absolutely nothing wrong with being gay. There is no cure. There is no need for a cure.

      All that is required is simple equality. You don't like homosexuality, great. Don't be gay. Don't use your distaste for it to tell me that I'm ill because I like boys and girls in the same way. Don't use your paranoia over some gay cooties to codify my behavior.

      Stop pretending it's a disease and realize that it is just how a person IS. And there is nothing wrong with that.

      March 12, 2014 at 7:22 pm |
      • believerfred

        Is it ok to have sex with a married boy or girl (if they are not your spouse)?

        March 12, 2014 at 7:32 pm |
        • myweightinwords

          That depends on their vows, Fred.

          March 12, 2014 at 8:35 pm |
        • believerfred

          That is the problem with relative moralism especially when relativity boils down to just your feelings. It is flat out wrong regardless of vows taken because you have no assurance that someone is not going to suffer pain at some level (emotional etc) as a result.

          March 12, 2014 at 9:02 pm |
        • myweightinwords

          fred,

          That is the problem with relative moralism especially when relativity boils down to just your feelings.

          How did we jump from a simple "is it okay to..." question into some diatribe on moral relativity? I said, that whether or not it is "okay" to sleep with a married man or woman is dependent on their vows. For example, if I were to marry, my vows would not include a promise to be monogamous. I'm not a monogamous person. I've known this most of my life.

          And before you jump on me for "doing what feels good" understand that it isn't about having sex with multiple partners, it's about the fact that I know myself well enough to know that I personally can never emotionally be anyone's "one and only"....it isn't so much about ME having other partners as it is about me wanting to make sure that my partner has all of the love and emotional support he or she requires.

          It is flat out wrong regardless of vows taken because you have no assurance that someone is not going to suffer pain at some level (emotional etc) as a result.

          There is never a guarantee that someone isn't going to get hurt in a relationship, fred. Never. Relationships take work. They take effort. They take communication. And yeah, sometimes they hurt. And yeah, sometimes they fall apart. Polyamorous relationships take double, triple, etc effort. Everyone involved has to be involved.

          Love is a precious thing to give another human being, but giving them that love doesn't give you ownership of them, it doesn't entitle you to exclusive access to their heart for the rest of eternity. Love grows as it's given.

          March 12, 2014 at 9:21 pm |
        • believerfred

          myweightinwords
          I had not thought of that perspective, thanks. You conclusion would make it workable "Love grows as it's given."

          March 12, 2014 at 10:22 pm |
        • myweightinwords

          fred,

          I had not thought of that perspective, thanks. You conclusion would make it workable "Love grows as it's given."

          This has been my experience.

          Peace to you.

          March 13, 2014 at 12:12 am |
      • Peaceadvocate2014

        My,

        I respectfully disagree. Are u saying then that at birth a boy by nature was attracted to a boy. Dont you ever think that we have something to do with it, thus the transformation. Open mind pls.

        March 12, 2014 at 7:32 pm |
        • myweightinwords

          Human sexuality is a complex thing.

          Part of it is certainly genetic. Part of it is environmental.

          I know boys as early as 5 years old who know that they like boys in the way that other boys like girls. I've known children who have known since they were three years old that they were a different gender than their body.

          It isn't an illness. It is who they are. It is who I am.

          March 12, 2014 at 8:38 pm |
        • Peaceadvocate2014

          My,

          At 5 yrs old environmental influence is a posibility. What if the 5 boys simply like to play with 5 boys like we did. Is it attraction at an early age? No contact with 5 yr old girls? Im skeptical.

          Let say it is not an illness. But what if it is? Do we find ways to cure it? Or the best way may be to let it be and it would correct itself if its wrong.

          Lets go further, what about union between man and animal, say man to his dog or woman with her cat. Is it illness? What about union between humans and object? Humans and money. Is it an illness?

          March 12, 2014 at 9:22 pm |
        • myweightinwords

          At 5 yrs old environmental influence is a posibility. What if the 5 boys simply like to play with 5 boys like we did. Is it attraction at an early age? No contact with 5 yr old girls? Im skeptical.

          Not in the environments where I've seen it. When a 5 year old who has no exposure to what homosexuality is plays "house" with his dolls and all the boy dolls kiss and marry other boy dolls, and he says he wants to marry a boy one day, despite the fact that his father punishes him for saying it, it's a pretty strong indicator. When that boy is then forced into "masculine" activities to make sure he doesn't become gay, and gets beat when he "acts gay"...why would someone continue to be gay if they had a choice?

          This is why "cures" don't work. Reparative therapy doesn't work. Because there is nothing wrong. It is normal. It is natural.

          Let say it is not an illness. But what if it is?

          It is not an illness. It is a natural part of being a human being. Homosexuality is a part of human sexuality...and not just humans. Other species also demonstrate homosexual behavior.

          Do we find ways to cure it? Or the best way may be to let it be and it would correct itself if its wrong.

          If it were "wrong" you would think it would have corrected itself by now. It is estimated that the number of homosexuals in the world across time has averaged between 8 and 10% fairly steadily. If it were an aberration or a defect it would have been bred out or grown over time. That hasn't happened.

          Lets go further, what about union between man and animal, say man to his dog or woman with her cat. Is it illness?

          Why do we even have to leave the species? Most people jump from homosexuality to pedophilia. Is that an illness? I believe it is. Regardless, it causes harm, to both the victim and the perpetrator, not to mention society at large.

          Personally, if the "person" can not give informed consent, it isn't se it's rape. I don't care if that person is a man or woman, boy or girl, cat or dog, horse or goat. If it's rape, it's a crime.

          What about union between humans and object?

          Happens all the time. A vibrator can be your best friend. Without all the messy emotional baggage that comes with a relationship.

          Humans and money. Is it an illness?

          What? I'm guessing you'd need to worry about...paper cuts in tender places....and I really can't believe this is the route you're taking. Seriously? I think I'd rather take the money and buy me something that would actually do the job.

          March 12, 2014 at 9:47 pm |
        • Akira

          I cannot imagine why anyone's marriage (or the genders of the participants) is anyone else's concern.
          Certainly this is a case of "nunya".

          As for people marring animals, can the animals give informed consent? No?

          Well there you go.

          March 12, 2014 at 9:52 pm |
        • Peaceadvocate2014

          My,

          I offended you, i apologize. You will always be my brother. Peace

          March 12, 2014 at 10:13 pm |
        • Peaceadvocate2014

          Akira,

          Ask Igarth he think animals could 🙂

          March 12, 2014 at 10:16 pm |
        • observernow

          Peaceadvocate2014

          "Lets go further, what about union between man and animal, say man to his dog or woman with her cat."

          The surest sign that you have no argument is when you try to change the subject to something else to make it look worse.

          If you can't stay on topic, why waste our time?

          This topic is h0m0s3xuality. Get a dictionary to see what "bestiality" means.

          March 12, 2014 at 10:19 pm |
        • Akira

          Peace,
          I don't know who lgarth is. I don't know of any animal that can say "why, yes, I'll marry you, Jethro" and fill out the paperwork necessary to obtain a license; I'd be interested in reading lgarth's account of that.

          March 12, 2014 at 10:36 pm |
        • myweightinwords

          Peaceadvocate2014,

          I may like boys and I may like girls, but I am 100% woman, so....not your brother, but thanks for the sentiment.

          Your insistence that homosexuality is an illness IS offensive. It's disgusting, to be honest.

          March 13, 2014 at 12:06 am |
        • sam stone

          Peaceadvocate: If you believe that god made everything down to the smallest detail, what makes you so sure that god did not make some people attracted to the same gender? Open mind pls

          March 13, 2014 at 2:17 am |
        • sam stone

          peaceadvocate: demonstrate how a dog or a cat can give informed consent.

          you are a pious bigot

          March 13, 2014 at 2:20 am |
      • observernow

        Peaceadvocate2014,

        At birth, a baby already has preferences for food, colors, shapes, sounds. etc. There's zero reason why attraction to the same or different s3x couldn't similarly be "pre-programmed".

        March 12, 2014 at 7:41 pm |
        • Peaceadvocate2014

          Observe,

          Did not see that way. Interesting.

          March 12, 2014 at 9:27 pm |
      • MadeFromDirt

        We are all fallen and born in a state of sin, and we all have a unique propensity to certain sins that are more irresistable and difficult to overcome for each individual. For some it is greed, for others it is abuse of substances and gluttony, for some it is a desire to control people, for others it is pleasures of the flesh including relationships that are contrary to God's design, and so on. Even believers who have been justified by the grace of God through our faith in Christ will still struggle with our fallen nature as long as we remain living in our physical body.

        March 12, 2014 at 8:39 pm |
        • myweightinwords

          That is what you believe. I do not.

          I believe we are all beautiful in our imperfection, struggling through a life made harder by lies fed to us about sin and made to suffer needlessly by those that would control us because of their own fear of who they are.

          Let go of the fear, embrace real love.

          March 12, 2014 at 9:04 pm |
        • Akira

          Babies are not born mired in sin.
          Babies are born innocent.
          People who can honestly look at the beauty of a new-born child and think, "sinner!" quite frankly frighten me; I would fear for the safety of that baby if s/he were born to Carrie's Mama.

          March 12, 2014 at 10:19 pm |
        • MadeFromDirt

          Akira, beauty is no proof of innocence, or accountability.

          March 13, 2014 at 3:15 am |
        • sam stone

          We are all born in a state of sin?

          What kind of vindictive pr1ck god do you grovel before?

          March 13, 2014 at 11:26 am |
        • Akira

          Dirt, how worldly can a infant aged 5 minutes be, and what do you want an infant aged 5 minutes to account for, anyway?

          What a wholly evil way to think of a newborn. How utterly creepy.

          March 13, 2014 at 12:06 pm |
        • MadeFromDirt

          Akira, you misunderstood my comment about accountability. I did not say an infant or small child is accountable for their sin. Although we are all born in sin as a result of Adam's fall, God does not hold acccountable those who have not grown into an understanding of their choices

          March 13, 2014 at 1:23 pm |
        • joey3467

          I have a major problem with this. Don't tell me everyone is a sinner and all sins are equal and then go out and try to ban only gay marriage. If all sins are equal then Christians should be trying to outlaw everything the bible says is sinful, or they are just hypocrites who appear to not like gay people.

          March 13, 2014 at 3:30 pm |
      • observernow

        MadeFromDirt

        "Even believers who have been justified by the grace of God through our faith in Christ will still struggle with our fallen nature as long as we remain living in our physical body"

        So why do Christians spend so much time and effort in picking on gays when they have so many of their OWN SINS to work on? Why do these HYPOCRITES chose negative verses about gays when there are FAR FAR MORE Christians who are ADULTERERS through divorce and remarriage than there are TOTAL number of gays?

        March 12, 2014 at 8:45 pm |
        • MadeFromDirt

          Observernow, I totally agree with you. The world is full of hypocrites who call themselves Christians. They are following a false gospel, and do not know Christ. Their fruits show it.

          March 12, 2014 at 8:54 pm |
  13. Doris

    Maybe Jim is right. Maybe the God of Abraham really tied one on, puked his guts out, and then, during a particularly nasty last dry-heave, breathed into the first Bible. That's really the only way I can see it making sense. Plus, back then people were right at home with those kinds of smells, sickness, fever, etc., since you couldn't keep a freshly-slaughtered lamb fresh for very long. The cure for religion: the internet and refrigeration.

    March 12, 2014 at 5:44 pm |
    • bostontola

      Doris,
      Funny that you mentioned that:

      Mbombo, also called Bumba, is the creator god in the religion and mythology of the Kuba of Central Africa.

      The story of Mbombo's creation tells that in the beginning, Mbombo was alone, and darkness and water covered the all earth. It would happen that Mbombo came to feel an intense pain in his stomach, and then Mbombo vomited the sun, the moon, and stars.

      March 12, 2014 at 5:52 pm |
  14. bostontola

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v_CgPsGY5Mw

    Have you ever seen the French Model commercial where the women thinks everything on the internet is true? When asked how she knows that, she answers, "The Internet".

    Remind you of anything?

    Almost anyone instantly sees the absurdity in her logic, even devout bible followers.

    March 12, 2014 at 5:25 pm |
    • Doris

      lol

      March 12, 2014 at 11:24 pm |
  15. Jim

    "And ancient men with their pea brains came up with your scenario too"

    The Bible clearly says, "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness"

    The Bible is the inspired word of God. It's not the willy-nilly concoction of pea brained individuals.

    March 12, 2014 at 4:47 pm |
    • Alias

      I dissagree.

      March 12, 2014 at 4:52 pm |
    • bostontola

      If I wanted people to follow my God, I wouldn't represent the Bible as the inspired word of God.

      March 12, 2014 at 4:55 pm |
    • Jim

      Faith in Christ as personal savior does not come from an argument, it comes from a personal relationship with Him.

      March 12, 2014 at 4:56 pm |
      • TruthPrevails1

        Ahhhhhhhhhh, aren't you the special one...children and their imaginary friends are cute and quite funny. 🙂

        March 12, 2014 at 5:05 pm |
      • Akira

        Such a pity nobody has been able to articulate what that is.

        March 12, 2014 at 5:15 pm |
      • kudlak

        I guess we'll take your claim of having a personal relationship with this guy the same way we all take somebody's claim to have a really hot boyfriend, or girlfriend that nobody has ever met, seen a picture of them together, etc... Can you understand why some people are more than just a little skeptical?

        Besides, how is this any different from any other religious system? You don't see yourself as an equal partner in this "relationship", do you? He's not your buddy Christ who you can eat nachos and beer with while watching hockey, right? If you worship him how is that like ANY other relationship in your life?

        March 13, 2014 at 11:21 am |
    • TruthPrevails1

      " It's not the willy-nilly concoction of pea brained individuals"

      Ignorance must truly be bliss!! Of course it is the word of man, nothing to point to anything else. The fact that you choose to be wilifully ignorant doesn't change reality.

      March 12, 2014 at 5:04 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Jim

      So the bible is true because it says it's true because it says it's true?
      Do you see the flaw in what you said?

      March 12, 2014 at 5:13 pm |
    • Jim

      The Bible is true because it's God's word.

      March 12, 2014 at 5:17 pm |
      • TruthPrevails1

        How do you know that?

        March 12, 2014 at 5:25 pm |
      • Jim

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QuBoGH797nI&feature=player_detailpage

        March 12, 2014 at 5:38 pm |
      • TruthPrevails1

        Ah how cute!! Turning to a member of your cult?? That's just more of the crap you're spewing and that we're saying you have no evidence for outside of the bible and that in using the bible to prove your god, it is circular reasoning and fails.

        March 12, 2014 at 5:43 pm |
        • new-man

          you are using hearsay from your cult to try to discredit the Bible.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:54 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          new man: Dictionaries are usually useful..go look up the word cult.

          March 12, 2014 at 6:30 pm |
        • sam stone

          new-man: and you accept the hearsay of the bible.

          March 13, 2014 at 11:29 am |
      • Jim

        That video will take at least 1 hour before you came up with any intelligent comment.

        March 12, 2014 at 5:53 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @Jim

      Can you prove that?

      March 12, 2014 at 5:19 pm |
      • Jim

        Prove what?

        March 12, 2014 at 5:23 pm |
        • new-man

          The Bible was narrated by the Holy Spirit, and written down by men- under the divine inspiration of the Holy Spirit.

          Jesus, the very Word became flesh chose to quote from Scripture instead of saying whatever He wanted. – If it's good enough for the Son of God, it good enough for me.
          With His Words He spoke the universe into existence, so I know His word is truth and powerful, and full of authority.

          The Word is so powerful that The WORD=Jesus himself quoted from Scriptures. In all His temptations Jesus could have said anything He wanted. He chose to quote from Scripture. That shows me the power, authority held in the written Word of God.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:38 pm |
      • hawaiiguest

        Can you prove the bible is the word of your god? Did you think that we had changed subjects?

        March 12, 2014 at 5:26 pm |
        • Jim

          The only way you will have proof for the word of God is by reading the Bible, praying and ask God to reveal Himself to you seek the truth.

          Relationship with God is on an individual basis, God gave me proof through His word, when I sought Him , through Isaiah 43:10. You have to seek the truth diligently and find it in the word of God. Some people need God to show them visions, for others it may be a word from God and some others may need to physically visitation from God. I am confident if you sought God you will hear from Him.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:36 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          Ni Jim, the bible is not evidence for your god. That is circular reasoning....re-read what has previously been said and you'll understand.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:38 pm |
        • hawaiiguest

          LOL Jim!
          Reading the bible is what turned me into an atheist. As is the case with most of the people who used to believe and don't anymore.
          You've also merely reiterated what was my original criticism. Circular reasoning is never a good basis for belief.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:44 pm |
        • Jim

          I've got the proof to know who God is when I sought him. Not sure what kind of proof you are looking for?

          As stated earlier, some may need God to show them visions, some others may need a word from Him and for others it is a physical visitation they need to be convinced who He is. Whatever is the proof you seek, ask God to reveal Himself to you. He will, when you seek the Truth.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:52 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          Jim, The old circular reasoning – I believe the bible as it is the word of god so god must exist because the bible tells me. That's never been a convincing argument.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:55 pm |
        • hawaiiguest

          @Jim

          Oooo Ooo is this a Ray Comfort argument? I tell you that I have done that then you tell me I did it wrong, or I wasn't sincere and that you know that because the bible says god will reveal himself so it must be my fault? Is that where this is going?

          March 12, 2014 at 5:58 pm |
        • new-man

          Jim – some may need God to show them visions, some others may need a word from Him and for others it is a physical visitation they need to be convinced who He is. Whatever is the proof you seek, ask God to reveal Himself to you. He will, when you seek the Truth.

          See Jim, the above is too simple and "crazy" for the so-called logical, and prideful who use their mouth/words to mock God instead of humbly asking Him to reveal Himself to them.
          Nah, they'll never do it. Too full of pride.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:59 pm |
        • hawaiiguest

          @new-man

          Congratulations on showing once again your inability to actually address points in posts.

          March 12, 2014 at 6:03 pm |
        • MadeFromDirt

          The human mind with its capacity for logic, reason, and symbolic understanding is one thing that separates us from animals and early hominids, and it is one aspect of proof that man was created in God's image. Our Creator loves for us to use our minds to seek Him and His truth and wisdom, and to discover His will.

          So God's chosen method of primary revelation is the Scripture written across a span of 1600 years and by 40 authors including eyewitnesses. It is historically accurate as verified by outside independent contemporaneous sources and archaeology, and it inerrantly captures the consistency of God's Word and His Gospel to save fallen man. From papyrus and sheepskins to printing presses and now the internet, God has preserved His Word for His people through the centuries.

          The books of the Bible are the most studied dokuments of antiquity, and have withstood credible scholarly scrutiny and skepticism ever since first circulated, by experts no less competent than today. History regarding other cultures, civilizations, and ancient societies that is readily accepted by deniers as fact today is based on accounts that are much less verified than Scripture. Why do the deniers apply such a strict standard only to Scripture? Could it be their prideful desire to try to escape their Creator's authority?

          It is deliciously ironically hilarious how deniers enjoy using their God-given brain power to construct their hollow arguments against God, but at the same time they complain that the Bible should have been written in English by God standing in their presence today and at a first-grade level that would not have invited deep study and intellectual exercise.

          March 12, 2014 at 8:20 pm |
        • observernow

          MadeFromDirt

          "it inerrantly captures the consistency of God's Word"

          Yes. Like when God changed the length of peoples lives from several centuries down to one. Like when God scrapped his rule on punishing children for their father's sin. Like when God threw out the "no work on the Sabbath rule". Like when Jesus got God to change all the laws on killing people.

          March 12, 2014 at 8:35 pm |
        • MadeFromDirt

          Observernow, you took a phrase of my comments out of context, in the same way you took your false contradictions out of the context of Scripture.

          March 12, 2014 at 8:45 pm |
        • observernow

          MadeFromDirt

          If you don't think there are contradictions in the Bible, you've either not read it or don't do any thinking about what you are reading.

          March 12, 2014 at 9:55 pm |
        • Madtown

          So God's chosen method of primary revelation is the Scripture
          ----
          So, why didn't God choose to reveal his word to all his equal creations? You know.....so everyone he created EQUAL would have an equal chance for salvation? Does God play favorites? Only giving his word to certain cross-sections of the equal human beings he created?

          March 12, 2014 at 10:04 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          dirt
          "It is historically accurate as verified by outside independent contemporaneous sources and archaeology, and it inerrantly captures the consistency of God's Word"

          It is neither historically accurate nor verified by outside independent contemporaneous sources and archaeology. Obviously some people and a few more places are verified but none of the important events have been verified and in fact the majority of Genesis has been proven incorrect.

          There are many inconsistencies in the bible – it is a long list; did Korah's children die? Numbers 16 implies that they did, Numbers 26 says they didn't, how did Judas die, compare Matthew 27 with Acts 1, many many more

          March 12, 2014 at 10:07 pm |
        • MadeFromDirt

          In Santa We Trust, your two examples of alleged contradictions are perfect examples of the usual limited study and reasoning by deniers, and so it actually proves my earlier points about deniers and their priorities for use of their minds. Is it a contradiction that Judas hanged himself and his body broke apart? No, imagine a high branch or a tree overhanging a cliff, or a thin rope that cut through him. And sons of Korah that were swallowed by the earth for their rebellion against Moses in Numbers 16 are not the sons who remained loyal to Moses who are specifically named in Numbers 26.

          Madtown, yes you can say God "plays favorites". He favored Jacob over Esau. We all deserve hell, but some are saved according to God's will. To whom higher will you appeal? There is no righteousness higher than God, and such pure righteousness requires banishment of all that is ungodly. That is why God sent His Son for us.

          March 12, 2014 at 11:59 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          dirt,
          I see you didn't answer
          "It is neither historically accurate nor verified by outside independent contemporaneous sources and archaeology. Obviously some people and a few more places are verified but none of the important events have been verified and in fact the majority of Genesis has been proven incorrect."

          Also I was referring to what the bible says not what you imagine might have happened to tap-dance around the inconsistencies. btw there are scores maybe hundreds of examples which I couldn't be bothered to find. Another example is the differences between the gospels on when Jesus rid the Temple of the money-changers – one has it as his early work, others as his last act – big difference.

          March 13, 2014 at 12:25 am |
        • hawaiiguest

          zzzZZZzzz

          Oh are you done yet Dirt? Or will you continue to merely assert your right by merely brushing off anything anyone says against your fairy tale book as "oh you didn't study it" or "misinterpretation"?
          Why aren't you out killing them ga -0.

          March 13, 2014 at 1:28 am |
        • hawaiiguest

          zzzZZZzzz

          Oh are you done yet Dirt? Or will you continue to merely assert your right by merely brushing off anything anyone says against your fairy tale book as "oh you didn't study it" or "misinterpretation"?
          Why aren't you out killing them gays?
          Stoning to death those children who dare to disobey their parents? Do you make sure to beat your slaves so they won't die within 2 days?
          Hopefully you aren't a woman trying to teach a man. That's a big no no in the bible.

          March 13, 2014 at 1:34 am |
        • MadeFromDirt

          In Santa We Trust, obviously I disagree with your response about the historical accuracy of the Bible, so I did not think you were expecting a specific reply to your statement, which is that obviously we have different views of the independent sources and what qualifies as proof and disproof. But again, close study of the alleged contradictions you cite reveals they are not contradictions at all, but are the product of your bias against your Creator. You are the one dancing around what the Bible says, to extract your version of what is written. If you would cite the verses that you think state Jesus' clearing of the temple occurred at different times, I would again explain how you are mistaken.

          Hawaiiguest, I know it's getting late even in the Pacific, so your mind probably is not in top form right now, but nevertheless your false interpretations of God's truth fall right in line with the others, and your comments are further proof of the truth in my earlier comments, and quite humerous (even if you don't see it). Thank you, and sleep well.

          March 13, 2014 at 2:56 am |
        • joey3467

          My favorite part of the bible is the verse that says god can't defeat an army with iron chariots. If he can't beat that what the hell does he think he is going to accomplish when he comes back and has to face planes and tanks and stuff?

          March 13, 2014 at 4:36 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          dirt,
          John places the "cleansing of the Temple" as one of Jesus' first acts – around the time time of his first "miracle" whereas the others place it at the end of his life – probably the act that "sealed his fate".

          That is not a minor difference that could be accounted for by a different perspective or a slight mismemory.

          But there are many other examples.

          March 13, 2014 at 5:13 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          dirt, There are so many stories which are not verified apart from a few people and a few more places, some examples: walls of Jericho, Lot's wife, location of Eden, location of Nod, Adam & Eve story, Cain & Abel story, Tower of Babel story, Jonah and the fish story, parting of the Red Sea, any of Jesus' miracles, etc. etc.
          What are examples of verified accounts in the bible?

          March 13, 2014 at 5:48 pm |
        • hawaiiguest

          @Dirt

          So continue to not address anything, and continue to assert you're right because you say so.
          Pretty typical.

          March 13, 2014 at 9:15 pm |
    • TruthPrevails1

      A quick watch of this will explain how wrong you are:
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cz-V6hsGrdE

      March 12, 2014 at 5:27 pm |
    • joey3467

      If you want anyone to take you seriously you need to prove that the bible is the inspired word of god without using the bible.

      March 13, 2014 at 3:34 pm |
  16. hawaiiguest

    How overblown can you get? Everyone is so intent on this pope being some kind of progressive icon that they are willing to spin everything he says. Francis has not, in any way, indicated a changing of positions from Catholic tradition.

    March 12, 2014 at 4:36 pm |
    • bostontola

      As I learned from other commenters, the pope doesn't have the power to change doctrine/dogma in a substantial way. It does have value for him to take a position of tolerance. If all religions and sects were more tolerant, the world would be better off.

      March 12, 2014 at 4:44 pm |
      • believerfred

        The World always appears better off without God to the non believer yet just as the Bible revealed it (the world) to the believer the world continues to look like Egypt under control of the Prince of Darkness.

        March 12, 2014 at 4:48 pm |
        • bostontola

          What a negative view of existence your religion has. I want no part of that.

          March 12, 2014 at 4:50 pm |
        • believerfred

          bostontola
          Natural Selection with survival by way of a bloody claw sounds better to you?
          The Bible refers to the World as this fallen place we live in as the direct result of rejecting God. This is true even if you do not believe in God. If you wish to see it as only the thoughts of deluded men it remains the same. In the presence of God there is hope in a promise God will make all things good in this lifetime and forever. Outside the presence of God there is only death.
          You are confused by the beauty of creation in the physical (sun sets, puppy dogs, wonder and awe of the universe, love etc) which believers and non believers enjoy equally. It is the presence of God that was missing in Egypt with its slavery, oppression, materialism and false gods. When you choose to exist outside the presence of God it is termed the fallen world. In your world evil people and Jesus both enter the same restful eternal slumber.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:51 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          fred
          "The Bible refers to the World as this fallen place we live in as the direct result of rejecting God. This is true even if you do not believe in God."

          It may be true that the bible says that (I don't know) but that doesn't make the bible true. To establish that, you'd need to establish that a god exists and that it is your god.

          March 12, 2014 at 6:15 pm |
        • believerfred

          In Santa We Trust
          Let's assume the Bible is just a myth from Adam and Eve justifying why life was perfect when God was with them and everything went to hell in a handbasket upon rejecting God. The world carries on in its fallen ways yet those who love God and truly desire to do Gods will have a very different perspective on existence and life itself. This perspective translates into a way of life more like Jesus. This perspective is one of hope, an ideal of a heavenly kingdom where there are no more tears and everything works out to the good of those who believe.

          Now, does that not make the Bible true since what happens with true believers follows what the Bible said would happen? If the end of our life is as you suggest that does not change my reality. My reality was an existence lived out in the presence of God, there will be no more tears and everything did work out to the good of those who believe.

          March 12, 2014 at 6:41 pm |
        • midwest rail

          " This perspective translates into a way of life more like Jesus."
          Oh, if only that were true.

          March 12, 2014 at 6:48 pm |
        • believerfred

          midwist rail
          You also just proved the words of Jesus true and thus another Bible truth confirmed "for all have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God"
          The truthiness of the Bible attests to its truthiness. Not to mention your testimony to it truth

          March 12, 2014 at 6:53 pm |
        • midwest rail

          Nonsense, fred. Another deflection from one of the more intentionally dishonest posters on these pages. Well done.

          March 12, 2014 at 6:55 pm |
        • observernow

          believerfred

          Fortunately, most people have "fallen short of the Glory of God" by rejecting slavery, discriminations, etc.

          March 12, 2014 at 6:58 pm |
        • believerfred

          Midwest rail
          How was that a deflection? You implied Christians do not follow Jesus simple command of love. You are correct that is true that is stated in the Bible also. Thus on that point (all fall short of the model Jesus set) the Bible is true. Right or am I missing something?

          March 12, 2014 at 7:10 pm |
        • midwest rail

          fred, it is a deflection because you can't have it both ways – unless, of course, it was written that way intentionally, so that you can always have it both ways. You either have the life as you first described or you do not.

          March 12, 2014 at 7:51 pm |
      • hawaiiguest

        fred your complete dependence on making yourself right by default merely shows the arrogance you have. You cannot demonstrate your god, your satan, or any other supernatural mumbo jumbo you want to inject into everything in order to make everyone agree with you.

        March 12, 2014 at 4:52 pm |
        • believerfred

          Why would anyone believe me on such things given the majority in Jesus day not only did not believe but completely rejected him and his message.
          Now, just as Jesus stated (as written AD 55-105) it is the Holy Spirit that would reveal truth at Pentecost. Suddenly 3,000 believed. The same is true to this day where it is the Holy Spirit that opens the truth to our hearts and minds.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:34 pm |
        • hawaiiguest

          @fred

          So in other words. Avoid demonstrating, and continue to assert. Got it.
          Just like all other faith based claims. Assert and never address the actual questions.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:36 pm |
        • believerfred

          hawaiiguest
          "You cannot demonstrate your god, your satan, or any other supernatural mumbo jumbo "
          =>I just did. Jesus said I will send the Holy Spirit who will open your heart and mind to the truth so you can believe. The Holy Spirit came upon the Apostles then 3,000 at Pentecost. That pattern is factual and can be evidenced to this day when anyone comes to faith in Christ they will tell you about the power of the Holy Spirit that brought them to faith. Are 1.7 billion demonstrations of specifically stated truth not sufficient.
          Perhaps some higher math will be helpful; unbeliever + Holy Spirit = knowledge of God. Exactly what part of this is not supernatural?

          March 12, 2014 at 6:01 pm |
        • sam stone

          It is always amusing how True Believers (TM) confuse belief with knowledge

          March 13, 2014 at 5:46 am |
        • sam stone

          "We evangelicals need sin in our life as it constantly reminds us or our need to forgive others and ask forgiveness for ourselves."

          No, you evangelicals need sin in your life because it gives you a platform to preach

          "It keeps us humble."

          HA. Claims of KNOWLEDGE of god, as opposed to belief in god, are not the hallmark of humility

          March 13, 2014 at 5:55 am |
        • believerfred

          sam stone
          =>noun: knowledge
          1.facts, information, and skills acquired by a person through experience or education; the theoretical or practical understanding of a subject. synonyms: understanding, comprehension, grasp, command, mastery, expertise, skill, proficiency, expertness, accomplishment, adeptness, capacity, capability;

          2.awareness or familiarity gained by experience of a fact or situation.
          "the program had been developed without his knowledge"

          =>Believers filled with the power of Holy Spirit do in fact have knowledge the godless do not have. It is simply your opinion based on your lack of knowledge or delusions caused by emotional or biological effect that would account for your opinion. Given that the vast majority of the world have knowledge relative to that which is supernatural belief is common knowledge with the possibility of god being common sense. You are in a small minority of mankind that lacks this common sense.

          March 13, 2014 at 12:02 pm |
    • believerfred

      If the spin seems positive then the powers of darkness (media) must like this guy. This means there is a change in position and the direction will destroy the church.

      March 12, 2014 at 4:44 pm |
      • midwest rail

        If the media = the powers of darkness, and the world is under the control of the Prince of Darkness, then Rupert Murdoch is the devil, right ? Heck, plenty of us have been saying that for years.

        March 12, 2014 at 4:54 pm |
        • believerfred

          Put another way if you do not love God and love your neighbor as your self your life does not resemble the things of God

          March 12, 2014 at 6:09 pm |
        • midwest rail

          "...and love your neighbor as your self ..."
          You may want to remind your fellow evangelicals of that, fred.

          March 12, 2014 at 6:11 pm |
        • believerfred

          We evangelicals need sin in our life as it constantly reminds us or our need to forgive others and ask forgiveness for ourselves. It keeps us humble.
          In the Old Testament we had a goat that we put our sins upon and sent the goat out of town thus our sin was removed. We also had the Law which we broke all the time bringing about that sin cycle.
          Believers need God based on the history of believers as presented in the Bible. Believers need God today for the same reason. A tree in the garden we shouldn't touch just to make sure we will touch it. We do it every time in every generation because we will never find God in our lives if we cannot see the sin in our lives.

          March 12, 2014 at 7:05 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      There is no change is position fred. And boston he isn't taking a position of tolerance. He's merely stating what the church has stood for since we can all remember. He's just doing it couched in nice sounding phrases.

      March 12, 2014 at 4:49 pm |
      • bostontola

        You may be right, but I'll give the Pope the benefit of the doubt until he proves me wrong.

        March 12, 2014 at 4:52 pm |
      • hawaiiguest

        That's the thing. He already has. Read what he said about atheists and heaven again.
        He said "all people are saved through Jesus". It was not a changing on the position of unbelievers. He merely didn't say what will happen in his opinion if you don't believe. And that we're only "saved" if we believe in his version of Jesus.

        March 12, 2014 at 4:54 pm |
        • bostontola

          I'm still open to him being genuinely interested in tolerance of people with other beliefs.

          March 12, 2014 at 4:57 pm |
      • hawaiiguest

        This pope was "sold" to the world as some kind of radical progressive. That colors how we see what he says. Really reading what he's said will expose that fake progressive facade.

        March 12, 2014 at 4:56 pm |
  17. bostontola

    Imagine if there was an election for an important leader. There are criteria that must be met to apply (e.g. must be a citizen of the country). A popular person doesn't meet that criteria (not a citizen) but is written in anyway. That person then changes the criteria and says, "See, I meet the criteria, no problem".

    That is essentially the situation with Jesus. He failed the criteria defined by Yahweh for the Davidic Messiah miserably. The New Testament was written to justify Jesus as the son of God to paper over this problem. The NT essentially re-wrote the criteria after the fact in an attempt to qualify Jesus.

    The problem is, the OT still exists. Anyone can read it and see that Jesus was not qualified to be the messiah, never mind the son of God. Of course, Christians aren't taught this in Sunday school. They are only taught the after the fact NT fabricated justifications. Their belief is so ingrained, that they ignore this fundamental issue, and will go to extreme lengths to develop preposterous rationalizations.

    Some Christians deny that Jesus failed Yahweh's criteria, with tenuous interpretations or by saying Jesus isn't done yet, they will come true when he returns. The problem is, the all the criteria are extremely straight forward and verifiable by direct observation. They were written for the people to have a direct, immediate, and unmistakable litmus test to weed out any false messiahs (of which there were many).

    It is amazing the lengths people will go to to preserve the comfort of their beliefs.

    March 12, 2014 at 4:23 pm |
    • new-man

      b: "It is amazing the lengths people will go to preserve the comfort of their beliefs."

      True dat... just remember when you point at others your thumb is always pointing right back at you 🙂

      Psalm 2:7 states, “I will declare the decree: the Lord has said unto Me, You are My Son; this day have I begotten You.” Jesus was the Son of God. Of all people ever born, only He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit (Matt. 1:20). God the Father, using an angelic being to represent His voice, publicly confirmed that Jesus was His Son: “And Jesus, when He was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon Him: and lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matt. 3:16-17).

      Christ’s birth was foretold throughout the Old Testament. Jesus was born of a virgin (Isa. 7:14; Matt. 1:22-23; Luke 2:7), in Bethlehem (Mic. 5:2; Matt. 2:1; Luke 2:4-6), later called out of Egypt (Hos. 11:1; Matt. 2:15) and reared in Galilee.

      He was born to become King over the government of God (Isa. 9:6-7)—a position for which He qualified to replace Satan as this world’s ruler (Matt. 4:1-11). When Pilate asked Jesus if He was a king, Christ replied, “You say that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth hears My voice” (John 18:37).

      Yet He also said, “My kingdom is not of this world: if My kingdom were of this world, then would My servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is My kingdom not from here” (vs. 36). During His First Coming, Christ was also an ambassador, or representative, for God’s kingdom. He was a divine Messenger who brought a message from heaven—good news—about the government He represented. At Christ’s Second Coming He will replace the governments of men with the government of God (Dan. 2:34-36, 44-45).

      March 12, 2014 at 4:53 pm |
      • bostontola

        You didn't get the post at all. The NT is after the fact, just like a politician that changes the rules after the fact.

        March 12, 2014 at 4:59 pm |
        • new-man

          I get your post quite well...
          the answer doesn't change because YOU find it unacceptable.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:09 pm |
        • bostontola

          new-man,
          Can you rebut my point without using the NT?

          March 12, 2014 at 5:11 pm |
        • hawaiiguest

          @new-man

          And yet you addressed absolutely nothing in the original post. You merely vomited out a bunch of bible verses and move on.
          Address the actual post.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:12 pm |
    • Russ

      @ bostontola: we had this conversation before at length here...
      http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2014/02/28/homeless-jesus-statue-sparking-debate/comment-page-2/

      you said the qualifications were (which I'll quote):
      "1) He must be Jewish. (Deuteronomy 17:15, Numbers 24:17)
      2) He must be a member of the tribe of Judah (Genesis 49:10) and a direct male descendent of both King David (I Chronicles 17:11, Psalm 89:29-38, Jeremiah 33:17, II Samuel 7:12-16) and King Solomon. (I Chronicles 22:10, II Chronicles 7:18)
      3) He must gather the Jewish people from exile and return them to Israel. (Isaiah 27:12-13, Isaiah 11:12)
      4) He must rebuild the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem. (Micah 4:1)
      5) He must bring world peace. (Isaiah 2:4, Isaiah 11:6, Micah 4:3)
      6) He must influence the entire world to acknowledge and serve one G-d. (Isaiah 11:9, Isaiah 40:5, Zephaniah 3:9)"

      Christians claim he fulfilled all those rather definitively.
      when i pressed you on that, you said he failed 2,3,4,5,6

      to which I pointed out:
      "@ bostontola: you don't have to be a Christian to understand the argument. the NT addresses everyone of those head on. it sounds like your argument is primarily contingent on claiming the NT "moved the goalposts" – but that requires a much later date for the NT. the scholarship is not there.

      for clarity:
      2) Christ's genealogies in Matthew & Luke
      3) the Church IS the new Israel; & freedom is not merely from human oppressors but the ULTIMATE ones: sin & death
      4) Jesus claimed HE was the temple – and he was raised after 3 days
      5) "my peace i leave with you, not as the world gives" (Jn.14:27)
      6) that's what the Great Commission is all about... and currently underway"

      March 1, 2014 at 7:16 pm |

      you responded that the NT "papers over" the claims – but never substantiated that claim. your response to Jesus' claims was basically "but that's not what the OT intended." that is:

      a) pressing the question of authorial intent (again, Jesus is claiming to *be* the divine author, even having sent the prophets they killed [Mt.23:34])

      b) ignoring the fact that MOST (if not all) Jesus' initial followers were Jewish and would have had similar objections – yet they felt them adequately answered

      remember:
      i) most biblically minded (read OT here) Jews considered the notion of resurrection prior to the end of time as preposterous. those who believed in the resurrection all thought it would be worldwide when time ended. the idea of a singular resurrection in the middle of history was something they would readily discount...
      POINT: so why would Jesus' original followers *invent* that idea when they were mostly (if not all) Jewish? it clearly wouldn't *help* their argument... unless they believed it really happened.

      ii) these original Jewish followers then went to the rest of the Hel.lenized Jewish world sharing Christ – repeatedly arguing *from* the OT. that simply doesn't make sense unless they not only believed the OT pointed to Christ... but *also* that it was a PERSUASIVE argument among Jews.
      (as i pointed out last time, Peter & Paul both reference that Christ fulfilled the OT, and Christ himself said the entire OT was about him)

      SUM: saying that Christians "paper over" the OT fails to recognize the historical realities of the spread of Christianity – much less actually engages the theological arguments that they clearly used in the dramatic rise of Christianity throughout its first 3 centuries. if you can't see a connection here (one compelling enough to be *used* in persuasive arguments to other Jews), what alternate explanation do you have for these *historical* facts (namely, that early Christians were Jews, used the OT to defend their belief that Jesus was the Messiah, & believed in the resurrection)?

      your argument requires ignoring not only the theological connections but the historical context and audience of the original hearers.

      March 12, 2014 at 4:57 pm |
      • new-man

        Russ,

        Thanks so much for posting this.... I know it won't stop bostonola from asking his questions again and again hoping to get answers that seem right to him... however I try when I can to post, so others who do not know, will not be confused or conned.

        March 12, 2014 at 5:07 pm |
        • bostontola

          new-man,
          Thank you for continuing to follow your beliefs without ever questioning blatantly false parts of the dogma. Russ provides you with absurd rationalizations, and you swallow them hook, line, and sinker.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:10 pm |
        • new-man

          Thank you for continuing to follow your beliefs without ever questioning blatantly false parts of the dogma. Russ provides you with absurd rationalizations, and you swallow them hook, line, and sinker.

          I'm happy you used beliefs instead of religion, and for that I am grateful.
          You are wrong about what I question and what I accept. Isn't it because I already have an opinion that I am able to readily agree with Russ?
          I am quiet capable of disagreeing with anyone in the same manner that I disagree with you on this particular topic.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:20 pm |
        • bostontola

          new-man,
          Your only rebuttal seems to be the old "I know you are but what am I" retort. Are you a grown up?

          March 12, 2014 at 5:28 pm |
      • bostontola

        2) Christ's genealogies in Matthew & Luke
        Christ could not be a male descendant of David because he didn't have a human father. OT law is very clear on that, it must be a male descendant.

        3) the Church IS the new Israel; & freedom is not merely from human oppressors but the ULTIMATE ones: sin & death
        This is one of those after the fact rationalizations. Yahweh was clear on this, any false messiah could make this same claim. If you accept this, you would have to accept anyone.

        4) Jesus claimed HE was the temple – and he was raised after 3 days
        Same as the response to 2 above. This is a total fabrication that could be claimed by any false messiah.

        5) "my peace i leave with you, not as the world gives" (Jn.14:27)
        That is a vacuous claim. The criteria wasn't for peace to people who accept the messiah, it was for world peace. Any objective person would instantly realize there was not world peace.

        6) that's what the Great Commission is all about... and currently underway"
        There are lots of religions. Again, any objective person would see immediately that Jesus failed this.

        2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 – All complete failures. Jesus did not qualify, Jesus was not the Davidic Messiah. You are free to delude yourself.

        March 12, 2014 at 5:08 pm |
        • new-man

          b: "You are free to delude yourself."

          I couldn't have said it any better. Thanks.

          Just don't try to delude those seeking the truth with your intentional denials of what you know to be true.
          You reject Christ because you want to, not because of lack of information.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:15 pm |
        • hawaiiguest

          How lovely it must be to believe that you can know what people think without actually being privy to mind reading.
          Tell me, how does it feel to be an arrogant douchebag?

          March 12, 2014 at 5:17 pm |
        • bostontola

          new-man,
          You can try to flip this all you want, I'm not the one denying the clear word of Yahweh on his definition of the messiah, you are. The words are right in the OT, Jesus fails to meet them. That is the definition of clear eyed evaluation. To deny those criteria or twist them, or re-write them like the NT does, that is the definition of delusion.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:19 pm |
        • new-man

          Hawaii,
          how does it feel to have a limited vocabulary?

          (also, you're not fooling anyone with your new handle)

          March 12, 2014 at 5:22 pm |
        • Akira

          I see. Asking questions repeatedly because they were not answered previously is a no-no. Check.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:24 pm |
        • hawaiiguest

          @new-man

          New handle? I've had this handle for over 2 years now.
          And it seems I was correct in assuming that you would merely latch on to a few choice words to actually avoid addressing the point of my post.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:25 pm |
        • new-man

          bostonola,
          there is nothing to flip. You and I have the same evidence. You choose (like most of the religious leaders at the time) not to believe. I have chosen (like even some of the pagans – the centurion for one) to believe.

          so, we will always come to an impasse... because at the end of it all... it always comes back to what one believes.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:26 pm |
        • bostontola

          new-man,
          We do have the same evidence. I directly read it, you twist it and rationalize.

          Please show me where I have made some strange leap in my read of Yahweh's criteria. Your leaps are pointed out above.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:30 pm |
        • new-man

          you have the temerity to ask if someone is a grown up, when your objections as to why you believe "Christ Jesus didn't fulfill the criteria of Messiah" is so juvenile, that's the reason I've not bothered to address them; besides the fact that I already did several days ago and I know fred and many others have addressed them. Which is why I have concluded that you want an answer that "seems right to you" and not the correct one.

          These are examples of your juvenile thinking:
          Christ could not be a male descendant of David because he didn't have a human father.
          Jesus claimed HE was the temple – and he was raised after 3 days Same as the response to 2 above. This is a total fabrication that could be claimed by any false messiah.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:50 pm |
        • Vic

          To "Boston to LA"

          Do you have actual knowledge and experience with Jewish Scriptures?

          March 12, 2014 at 5:57 pm |
        • bostontola

          new-man,
          you merely repeated my text, please point out the flaw in my statement. Rebuilding the temple is a clear criteria. To say Jesus is the new temple is a rationalization. The temple was not rebuilt. Rebuilding of the temple was a clearly defined desire of the Jewish people. It wasn't a symbolic thing, it was a real thing. It didn't happen.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:57 pm |
        • bostontola

          Vic,
          Just what I learned in my comparative religion classes in college.

          March 12, 2014 at 5:59 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          new-man
          "These are examples of your juvenile thinking:
          Christ could not be a male descendant of David because he didn't have a human father."

          Why do you consider that juvenile? Is seems axiomatic that Jesus could not be descended from or even a blood relative of David or any male not in Mary's lineage.

          March 12, 2014 at 6:02 pm |
        • new-man

          boston : "Rebuilding of the temple was a clearly defined desire of the Jewish people. It wasn't a symbolic thing, it was a real thing. It didn't happen."

          Christ wasn't fulfilling the Jewish people's terms, or your terms for that matter. He was fulfilling as you had previously stated the terms set by Yahweh.

          March 12, 2014 at 6:04 pm |
        • bostontola

          new-man,
          And he failed. Yahweh said the temple would be rebuilt, it wan't. Why twist that into some poetic thing like Jesus is the new temple.

          March 12, 2014 at 6:06 pm |
        • Vic

          "Boston to LA"

          I found the criteria you posted on a the website "http://www.debunkingskeptics.com"

          March 12, 2014 at 6:15 pm |
        • new-man

          Jesus was indicted based on one statement with no supporting evidence. Here is what transpired:

          Two false witnesses testified that Jesus said, “I will destroy this temple that is made with hands, and within three days I will build another made without hands” (Mark 14:58). This was used as the indictment against Jesus. However, it was false. Jesus never said this! Rather, He stated, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up” (John 2:19).

          Notice Jesus did not say, “I will destroy this temple…” He said, “Destroy this temple…” Second, He did not say “…that is made with hands…” or “…build another made without hands.” These subtle differences completely change the meaning of His statement—and the false witnesses knew this. They portrayed Jesus as planning to destroy the physical Temple in Jerusalem. But this was far from the meaning of His words!

          Jesus’ statement in John 2:19 was a response to those who asked Him to give a sign (vs. 18). He was not referring to the physical Temple being destroyed; rather, He was talking about His body—that three days after He would be put to death He would rise from the grave. By cunningly rephrasing His statement, the false witnesses were able to bring an indictment against Jesus.

          Next, the high priest arose, and said to Jesus, “Aren’t You going to answer? Do You have anything to say about these charges?”

          Jesus said nothing.

          Then the high priest exclaimed, “I command You in the name of the living God: Tell us whether You are the Christ, the Son of God!”

          Jesus answered, “You have said correctly. Nevertheless, you shall see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of God, and coming in the clouds of heaven.”

          Immediately, the high priest tore his clothes, and shouted, “He has spoken blasphemy! What further need have we of witnesses? You are witnesses to His blasphemy. What do all of you think?”

          “He is deserving of death!” everyone shouted in unison (Matt. 26:62-66).

          Notice that the high priest’s question was completely unrelated to the indictment brought by the false witnesses. Instead of condemning Jesus on the charge of supposedly threatening to destroy the Temple and rebuild it three days later, the court condemned Him on a separate charge—that He claimed to be the Messiah. Jesus was indicted on one charge, tried on a separate charge, and condemned on His own testimony.

          March 12, 2014 at 6:37 pm |
        • observernow

          new-man

          "You reject Christ because you want to, not because of lack of information."

          Definitely true. It is the information in the Bible which contains errors, contradictions, nonsense, and hypocrisy that causes many people to be NON-BELIEVERS.

          March 12, 2014 at 6:53 pm |
        • bostontola

          new-man,
          If a false messiah says, "I am the messiah", how is that evidence that he is the real messiah? That is what quoting the NT is, asking the false messiah his opinion.

          March 12, 2014 at 7:10 pm |
        • bostontola

          Vic,
          You can find that criteria on a large number of sites. Why? Because it is in the bible.

          March 12, 2014 at 7:11 pm |
        • Vic

          Whenyou first posted the criteria, I was under the impression it is your own belief to be the case, your own assessment; however, when I looked it up, I found out that your entire argument is a copy from:

          http://www.debunkingskeptics.com/DebunkingChristians/Page26.htm

          I just find it appalling that you have such a vested interest in reviling Christianity to the extent of doing just that.

          March 12, 2014 at 7:47 pm |
        • observernow

          Vic,

          Do you find it similarly "appalling" when believers cut and paste from some ridiculous apologist's site?

          March 12, 2014 at 7:51 pm |
        • bostontola

          Vic,
          1. The argument is mine, many people share that argument. I see versions of it on many sites. The specific arguments, which have gone very long, were all mine. I used their data on the specific OT verses.
          2. The argument is what you and new-man keep avoiding. It is a classic tactic to attack the person rather than the argument.

          I don't blame you. The argument is air tight and it drives a stake into the heart of Christianity. I can understand why you would hate it.

          Try rebutting the argument. Jesus was not the messiah, just a popular, very well spoken person who had very dedicated followers. No way he could be the messiah, he failed Yahweh's criteria miserably.

          March 12, 2014 at 8:26 pm |
        • Vic

          This not about copy & paste as much as deception. This is a case of going against Christianity at any cost to the extent of copying an entire argument from a different belief system.

          Someone argued that 'bostontola' is not Jewish the other day but I didn't know what to make of it till today, when I looked up the posted criteria on the net.

          March 12, 2014 at 8:26 pm |
        • midwest rail

          "... as much as deception. "
          What about the deception of those who intentionally misrepresent science/the opinions of scientists ? Where is your faux outrage then ?

          March 12, 2014 at 8:41 pm |
        • bostontola

          Vic,
          Try again. Rebut the argument. You can't, that's why you use the desperate tactic of attacking the person. The argument is as old as Christianity itself. It is not owned by Jews, it is a logical argument that proves that Jesus is not the messiah. No one has provided a worthy rebuttal. Give it a try.

          March 12, 2014 at 8:55 pm |
        • Vic

          http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2014/03/05/pope-francis-church-could-support-civil-unions/comment-page-16/#comment-2962090

          March 12, 2014 at 9:05 pm |
        • bostontola

          No rebuttal, that's what I thought. You can't. No one in 2000 years has been able to.

          March 12, 2014 at 9:17 pm |
        • believerfred

          bostontola
          Considering most of the Apostles were raised in the Old Testament why would you not accept their understanding of how Jesus filled the requirements? Saul of Tarsus was at the top of educated and intelligent men raised in accord with the Laws of the Prophets. Exactly how is it he got all his facts suddenly wrong? How many of these guys would have gone through what they went through if Jesus did fit the bill. Better yet why bother with the fake trail by the Priests if they could have simply trumpeted your ideas from AD 2014, ideas from a non Jew none the less. How could John the Baptist have been so wrong. Even the Priest feared the people because they trusted John as the Prophet who came before Christ.

          March 12, 2014 at 9:33 pm |
        • bostontola

          fred,
          I don't take anyone's word for it in a case of facts. I don't take Jews word for it. The OT had criteria attributed to Yahweh. It's right there in the bible. You compare the criteria to the historical record that isn't disputed by anyone. The temple wasn't rebuilt, there wasn't peace on earth, etc. It is simple evaluation of facts against unambiguous criteria. I'll listen to a rebuttal of the facts. I can't accept explanations in the NT because it is post facto. That is reasonable, don't you think?

          March 12, 2014 at 9:43 pm |
        • new-man

          I'm posting this so that your sad, misinformed delusions don't cause others to falter...

          (Why do you keep repeating that nonsense about the temple wasn't rebuilt... that's why I said it doesn't matter what anyone says, you are looking for an "answer" that seems right to you, and unfortunately you won't get it because you keep repeating a lie for a question)- see my post above regarding the "rebuilding of the temple"

          "One of the most central tenets of Christianity is that Jesus was the prophesied Christ, the Messiah. Time and again, Jesus referenced His fulfilling that role—sometimes subtly, sometimes overtly. If it can be proven He was not whom He claimed He was, then Christianity would collapse. If He was not the Christ—the prophesied coming King of an eternal kingdom—then why should anyone believe His words? He would be an imposter, and thus should be rejected.

          Can it be verified that Jesus fulfilled the numerous Old Testament prophecies concerning the Christ? If so, why did the Jews of the first century reject Him?

          March 12, 2014 at 10:15 pm |
        • new-man

          Sprinkled throughout the Old Testament, mainly in what are called the Major and Minor Prophets, are scores of prophecies describing a coming “messianic age,” or “Millennium”—a time of universal peace, prosperity and abundance. A time when war and nonstop bloodshed will be a thing of the past. The world peace all long for will finally be achieved during the rule of Jesus Christ. Even the nature of animals will be changed.

          Here are but a few of these prophecies:

          • “And He [the Christ] shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more” (Isaiah 2:4).

          • “They shall not hurt nor destroy in all My holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea” (Isa. 11:9).

          • “The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them” (Isa. 11:6).

          • “And the Lord shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one Lord, and His name one. And men shall dwell in it, and there shall be no more utter destruction; but Jerusalem shall be safely inhabited” (Zechariah 14:9, 11).

          The Jews in the first centuries B.C. and A.D. were very familiar with these scriptures and looked forward to their fulfillment with eager expectation. They well understood that the Messiah would usher in a time unlike any other.

          March 12, 2014 at 10:18 pm |
        • new-man

          All of this amounted to an impossible situation for the Jews. But the only options left were to (A) accept the oppression of the Romans, or (B) reject it and become enemies of the empire, which would lead to war.

          Thus, the idea of one coming to end the tyranny became ever more present in the minds of most Jews. Conditions were ripe for the Christ’s arrival. This led to a number of self-proclaimed false christs rising up and convincing some they were in fact the long-awaited deliverer of Israel, leading insur.re.ctions against the Roman government. But they were nothing more than imposters, and all of them failed in their self-appointed missions.

          It is in this Messiah-hopeful environment that Jesus was born, in 4 B.C. But it wasn’t until He reached the age of 30 that He began to preach to the masses, in 27 A.D. Over the course of His three-and-a-half-year ministry, only a tiny few believed His claim to being the long-awaited Christ.

          Why?

          March 12, 2014 at 10:20 pm |
        • new-man

          Numerous times throughout His ministry, Jesus informed others that He was the Christ, though usually in a subtle fashion. Most rejected His claim, often citing Old Testament scriptures as proof He could not be the coming Messiah. This rejection generally stemmed from Jewish tradition or from misinterpreting the scriptures.

          The first account of this is found in the book of Luke. Just after His baptism and being tempted by Satan in the wilderness for 40 days, Jesus entered a synagogue in Nazareth on the Sabbath and read from the book of Isaiah:

          “And there was delivered unto Him the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written, The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable year of the Lord” (Luke 4:17-19).

          When He finished reading these scriptures, Jesus sat down, with everyone in the synagogue looking curiously at Him. Then He said, “This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears” (Luke 4:21).

          Those present were no doubt familiar with this prophecy in Isaiah, and that it was one the Christ would fulfill. The people in the synagogue marveled at His words, asking, “Is not this Joseph’s son?” (Luke 4:22). In other words, “How could Jesus of Nazareth, the son of a carpenter, possibly be the Christ? We have known Him since He was a little boy. This can’t be the Christ.” Jesus simply did not fit their profile of the Messiah.

          March 12, 2014 at 10:21 pm |
        • bostontola

          new-man,
          As always, your post doesn't rebut 1 criterion. The temple wasn't rebuilt. Just look at it. Saying Jesus is the temple is mere rationalization that doesn't stand up to the fact that the temple wasn't rebuilt. There wasn't world peace. It is a historical fact that no one disputes. Your poetic rationalization that there is peace in Jesus doesn't compare to facts. Repeating them won't bolster your case.

          March 12, 2014 at 10:23 pm |
        • new-man

          The Old Testament, which was the only Scripture available during the time of Jesus, nowhere states that the Christ would not die. In reality, it clearly states the opposite, which we will see later.

          However, there are prophecies that show the Christ’s reign—and His kingdom—will endure forever, as found in Daniel chapter 7: “And there was given Him [the Christ] dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve Him: His dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and His kingdom that which shall not be destroyed” (vs. 14).

          Many read these and other scriptures and correctly noticed that the Messiah’s kingdom was to last forever. They then concluded that, once He appeared, He could not possibly die. To them, His death would appear to directly contradict God’s Word.

          Info fr. & to read the rest:
          http://realtruth.org/articles/070503-001-wijc.html

          March 12, 2014 at 10:25 pm |
        • new-man

          bostonola,
          I'm not trying to convince you of anything. I write so those with ears to hear, will hear, those with eyes to see will see; and those with a heart to receive will receive.

          how do you know a book is an autobiography? = not related to the topic, and you don't need to answer... just something to think about.

          March 12, 2014 at 10:31 pm |
        • bostontola

          new-man,
          You keep avoiding the problem. You use poetic interpretations of the OT and NT as prophesy. It is all up to interpretation. The NT stories could have been written to match OT elements, obviously the writers knew the OT.

          The criteria for the messiah is clear. The historical facts show they weren't met. None of your tenuous prophesy rebuts that. If you can't rebut the fact that the criteria wasn't met, all the prophesy in the world doesn't undo that. Yahweh didn't change his mind, did he?

          March 12, 2014 at 10:35 pm |
        • believerfred

          bostontola
          " I can't accept explanations in the NT because it is post facto. That is reasonable, don't you think?"
          =>Most NT explanations regarding Jesus being the Christ are not ex post facto by definition but, I think you question the acceptability of accounts from contemporaries. In that regard the arguments go on and on concerning objections and support depending on personal bias.
          The best argument is from skeptics themselves who claim the accounts were written so as to shoe horn Jesus into the OT prophecies concerning the "Messiah" or "Christ". Even if you could be convinced of the facts you would take the shoe horn position.
          Saul of Tarsus believed Jesus was the Christ because of a radical conversion experience much the same as most Christians today who have come to faith by sudden conversion evidenced by the living power of the Holy Spirit in that persons life. His writings are not questioned so skeptics must toss his work aside on the basis of unfounded speculation that he had a stroke or was delusional as a result of falling of his horse.
          Authorship of Matthew, Mark and others are always questioned as are the dates of writing . Most of the NT books were completed between AD 55 from the earliest writers to John about AD 90. Even accounts not included in the NT are questioned for not being included.
          Needless to say it is unreasonable to exclude all evidence supporting Jesus as the Christ without evidence or facts to support such speculation 2,000 years after the fact.

          March 12, 2014 at 11:23 pm |
        • bostontola

          fred,
          Even if you accept the factual elements of the NT, it doesn't compensate for the fact that Jesus failed almost every defined a priori criteria for the messiah. Jesus may have been an exceptional scholar, philosopher, human being, that deeply moved many into following him as the son of God, but he wasn't the messiah. He didn't meet hardly any of the criteria.

          March 12, 2014 at 11:37 pm |
        • realbuckyball

          Or maybe Saul of Tarsus was just a liar, (which he admitted).

          March 13, 2014 at 12:17 am |
        • believerfred

          I see your point and there were many conditions Jesus did not meet to receive the stamp of approval. I was going to rehash the tired apologetics that help us squeeze Jesus into all the right boxes but is it necessary? Jesus claimed to be the Christ and to question his word is an issue of faith. It is the Word of God not the word of man scrambling about to make God fit into the ways of man that is the light. If we need a whole bunch of apologetics that is not contained in the Bible that always strikes me as a red flag.
          The Sadducees and Pharisees in the day put Jesus on trial yet did not present any of the 26 reasons Jesus did not meet minimum requirements for a 'Kosher' stamp of approval. That would have been very important at trail and local PR yet it was ignored. Matthew, Peter and Paul whose mission field was the Jew did not address this defensively. It was actually obvious that many expected Jesus to be very different and Jesus made it clear the Jews where the ones who got many things backwards. .........have a good evening.

          March 13, 2014 at 1:49 am |
        • believerfred

          realbuckyball
          If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like duck we don't a supernatural explanation.

          March 13, 2014 at 1:57 am |
        • believerfred

          Did I just leave the word need out of the above? I guess if you don't have a need for the supernatural your not going to look for it.

          March 13, 2014 at 2:02 am |
        • sam stone

          And, if you do have a need for the supernatural, you are going to find it, whether or not is is actually there

          March 13, 2014 at 2:11 am |
    • dandintac

      Boston, would you mind briefly summing up Yahweh's criteria in the OT, and how Jesus did not meet it? I've read the Bible, but it was years ago and I can't remember this. I would appreciate it. Thanks.

      March 13, 2014 at 12:03 am |
  18. Reality

    And one more time to address the idiocy of atonement theology:

    from Professor JD Crossan's book, "Who is Jesus" co-authored with Richard Watts)

    "Moreover, an atonement theology that says God sacrifices his own son in place of humans who needed to be punished for their sins might make some Christians love Jesus, but it is an obscene picture of God. It is almost heavenly child abuse, and may infect our imagination at more earthly levels as well. I do not want to express my faith through a theology that pictures God demanding blood sacrifices in order to be reconciled to us."

    "Traditionally, Christians have said, 'See how Christ's passion was foretold by the prophets." Actually, it was the other way around. The Hebrew prophets did not predict the events of Jesus' last week; rather, many of those Christian stories were created to fit the ancient prophecies in order to show that Jesus, despite his execution, was still and always held in the hands of God."

    "In terms of divine consistency, I do not think that anyone, anywhere, at any time, including Jesus, brings dead people back to life."

    March 12, 2014 at 1:45 pm |
    • Jim

      Why did God require sacrifice? That was the only way sinful man can be reconciled with a holy God. That is supreme justice by God. The wages of sin is death, but the gift of eternal life is through Christ Jesus.
      A price had to be paid for the redemption of sins and that price was the ultimate sacrifice of sinless Jesus on the cross. Why was this price needed? That was the part of His requirement for atonement.
      Human beings can come up with their own ideas and thoughts as to what would be an ideal solution for the fallen world to be reconciled with a Holy God using their pea brain, but all those thoughts are in vain.
      Mankind does not possess infinite wisdom to argue away God's requirement for reconciliation and God's provision for redemption.

      March 12, 2014 at 4:33 pm |
      • otoh2

        Jim,
        "Human beings can come up with their own ideas and thoughts as to what would be an ideal solution for the fallen world to be reconciled with a Holy God using their pea brain..."

        And ancient men with their pea brains came up with your scenario too. There is no verified (nor even verifiable) evidence that any god ever said a dang thing.

        March 12, 2014 at 4:39 pm |
      • hawaiiguest

        Why would an all powerful, supposedly all loving being require blood and death as an ultimate solution? He made the rules right? Was he unable to say "you're all forgiven"? It's stupid. The sacrifice wasn't even a sacrifice. God and Jesus gave up nothing.

        March 12, 2014 at 4:40 pm |
        • myweightinwords

          It was this thought that I couldn't get past or around when I was struggling with my faith.

          More and more it continually reminds me I was right to walk away.

          March 12, 2014 at 4:46 pm |
        • bostontola

          I agree, the whole notion that there was a sacrifice involved is not credible. Then tying that to an original sin which indicts all people, and then provides "cure" by accepting Jesus as your savior...pure con game.

          March 12, 2014 at 4:48 pm |
      • doobzz

        "A price had to be paid for the redemption of sins and that price was the ultimate sacrifice of sinless Jesus on the cross. "

        Human sacrifice to appease a deity is abhorrant. Christianity is a primitive, violent, inhumane religion based on human sacrifice.

        March 12, 2014 at 10:37 pm |
  19. Akira

    Another Onion article that cracked me up:

    http://www.theonion.com/articles/gay-couple-weirded-out-by-pope-francis-standing-in,35109/

    March 12, 2014 at 12:56 pm |
  20. bostontola

    Teachings of God/the bibles.

    The teachings in the bibles were both pragmatic (like how to prepare food), and opinion based (like how to live life, make social rules, etc.). There is some great philosophy, and there is a lot of obsolete rules.

    The bibles didn't contain much teaching that didn't already exist in other places at that time. There was no revelation of the periodic table, nothing about forces and gravity, evolution, etc. There was nothing telling man that slavery would be regarded as fundamentally wrong, that humans should self govern with a Consti.tutional system that separates power, etc. In fact, the bible has many parts that are also present in ancient texts from other civilizations (priority is questionable, but sharing of knowledge is evident). They have scientific errors and obsolete moral components, revealing it is not divine.

    This extreme temporal dependence on the teachings in the bible should trigger great skepticism that it is not the universal God given wisdom and rule book it is claimed to be by some religions, but a great compendium of ancient knowledge that had enormous influence on human development.

    March 12, 2014 at 12:50 pm |
    • Reality

      Adding to bostontola's well-researched comments:

      King Hammurabi and the Egyptians who wrote the Book of the Dead and who did NOT need revelations from angels or mountain voices to develop needed rules of conduct for us h-o-minids.

      "Hail to thee, great God, Lord of the Two Truths. I have come unto thee, my Lord, that thou mayest bring me to see thy beauty. I know thee, I know thy name, I know the names of the 42 Gods who are with thee in this broad hall of the Two Truths . . . Behold, I am come unto thee. I have brought thee truth; I have done away with sin for thee. I have not sinned against anyone. I have not mistreated people. I have not done evil instead of righteousness . . .

      I have not reviled the God.
      I have not laid violent hands on an orphan.
      I have not done what the God abominates . . .
      I have not killed; I have not turned anyone over to a killer.
      I have not caused anyone's suffering . . .
      I have not copulated (illicitly); I have not been unchaste.
      I have not increased nor diminished the measure, I have not diminished the palm; I have not encroached upon the fields.
      I have not added to the balance weights; I have not tempered with the plumb bob of the balance.
      I have not taken milk from a child's mouth; I have not driven small cattle from their herbage...
      I have not stopped (the flow of) water in its seasons; I have not built a dam against flowing water.
      I have not quenched a fire in its time . . .
      I have not kept cattle away from the God's property.
      I have not blocked the God at his processions."

      "The Book of the Dead was written circa 1800 BCE. 2 The Schofield Reference Bible estimates that the Hebrew Exodus from Egypt and the provision of the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai occurred in 1491 BCE., some three centuries later. Many religious liberals, historians, and secularists have concluded that the Hebrew Scripture's Ten Commandments were based on this earlier docu-ment, rather than vice-versa."

      March 12, 2014 at 1:21 pm |
    • MidwestKen

      @bostontola,
      Well said!

      March 12, 2014 at 2:10 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Advertisement
About this blog

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