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March 20th, 2014
11:14 AM ET

Does the Big Bang breakthrough offer proof of God?

Opinion by Leslie A. Wickman, special to CNN

(CNN) The remarkable discovery, announced this week, of ripples in the space-time fabric of the universe rocked the world of science - and the world of religion.

Touted as evidence for inflation (a faster-than-the-speed-of-light expansion of our universe), the new discovery of traces of gravity waves affirms scientific concepts in the fields of cosmology, general relativity, and particle physics.

The new discovery also has significant implications for the Judeo-Christian worldview, offering strong support for biblical beliefs.

Here's how.

The prevalent theory of cosmic origins prior to the Big Bang theory was the “Steady State,” which argued that the universe has always existed, without a beginning that necessitated a cause.

However, this new evidence strongly suggests that there was a beginning to our universe.

If the universe did indeed have a beginning, by the simple logic of cause and effect, there had to be an agent – separate and apart from the effect – that caused it.

That sounds a lot like Genesis 1:1 to me: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the Earth.”

So this latest discovery is good news for us believers, as it adds scientific support to the idea that the universe was caused – or created – by something or someone outside it and not dependent on it.

MORE ON CNN: Big Bang breakthrough announced; gravitational waves detected

Atheist-turned-agnostic astronomer Fred Hoyle, who coined the term “Big Bang,” famously stated, “A common sense interpretation of the facts suggests that a superintellect has monkeyed with physics."

As Hoyle saw it, the Big Bang was not a chaotic explosion, but rather a very highly ordered event – one that could not have occurred by random chance.

We also need to remember that God reveals himself both through scripture and creation. The challenge is in seeing how they fit together. A better understanding of each can inform our understanding of the other.

It’s not just about cracking open the Bible and reading whatever we find there from a 21st-century American perspective. We have to study the context, the culture, the genre, the authorship and the original audience to understand the intent.

The creation message in Genesis tells us that God created a special place for humans to live and thrive and be in communion with him; that God wants a relationship with us, and makes provisions for us to have fellowship with him, even after we turn away from him.

So, we know that Genesis was never intended to be a detailed scientific handbook, describing how God created the universe. It imparts a theological, not a scientific, message.

(Imagine how confusing messages about gravity waves and dark matter might be to ancient Hebrew readers.)

As a modern believer and a scientist, when I look up at the sky on a clear starry night, I am reminded that “the heavens declare the glory of God” (Psalm 19:1). I am in awe of the complexity of the physical world, and how all of its pieces fit together so perfectly and synergistically.

In the Old Testament book of Jeremiah, the writer tells us that God “established (his) covenant with day and night, and with the fixed laws of heaven and earth.”

These physical laws established by God to govern interactions between matter and energy result in a finely tuned universe that provides the ideal conditions for life on our planet.

As we observe the complexity of the cosmos, from subatomic particles to dark matter and dark energy, we quickly conclude that there must be a more satisfying explanation than random chance. Properly practiced, science can be an act of worship in looking at God’s revelation of himself in nature.

If God is truly the creator, then he will reveal himself through what he’s created, and science is a tool we can use to uncover those wonders.

Leslie Wickman is director of the Center for Research in Science at Azusa Pacific University. Wickman has also been an engineer for Lockheed Martin Missiles & Space, where she worked on NASA's Hubble Space Telescope and International Space Station programs. The views expressed in this column belong to Wickman. 

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Culture & Science • Faith • Opinion • Science

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soundoff (4,918 Responses)
  1. glasgowrules

    I am no scientist or religious scholar but I've thought long and hard about why people believe in god or gods and have come to my own theory. It's all about the ultimate – death. Humans fear death so they soothe themselves by believing or hoping that there is life after death because the alternative is really scary. Personally, I believe my life on Earth is it, so I try to make the best of it without hurting anyone or anything else. I wish more people did that.

    March 22, 2014 at 10:12 am |
    • davidmer

      So by your logic only theists would be scared to die and all atheists would not be....how interesting that your theory would have not basis in science, logic, facts, or common sense...yet you reject Theism...why?

      March 22, 2014 at 12:36 pm |
      • glasgowrules

        Where in my post did I say that? It is my own personal opinion and nothing else. So get off your high horse.

        March 22, 2014 at 3:39 pm |
      • glasgowrules

        What I mean is we all fear death, some look to a god or afterlife and some don't, that's all.

        March 22, 2014 at 3:44 pm |
        • davidmer

          That is not what you said...you said that theists are theists because they fear death...by default those who do not "fall for the story of heaven" don't fear death. Now you say we all fear death...some choose God and others don't. Isn't that just saying "some people believe in God and some don't" and isn't that obvious?

          March 22, 2014 at 4:31 pm |
  2. nepawoods

    Some would do well to just listen to the first line of the theme song of the TV show (Big Bang Theory):

    "Our whole universe was in a hot dense state, then nearly fourteen billion years ago expansion started. Wait..."

    It's accurate enough to point out the theory doesn't say it popped into existence from nothing. It was in an incredibly hot dense state, and began expanding.

    And no, an unknown cause does not suggest a sentient being. We did god of the shrinking gaps before.

    March 22, 2014 at 10:01 am |
    • Vic

      With this discovery of Gravitational Waves for the first time in history, which Albert Einstein theorized about back in 1916, it is a clear indication that the universe had a beginning and expanded at a rate faster than the speed of light, right at that beginning, hence Creation Ex Nihilo.

      March 22, 2014 at 10:12 am |
      • nepawoods

        You keep saying that, but haven't offered a shred of defending argument even once.

        March 22, 2014 at 10:15 am |
        • ausphor

          nepawoods
          This is what Vic does. He spouts out propaganda for his brand of Christianity using misinformation and down right lies. Better to just ignore him, he is beyond reason and logic.

          March 22, 2014 at 10:31 am |
        • sam stone

          And he does so without any explanation of how a creator is not only a "god", but HIS "god"

          March 22, 2014 at 10:54 am |
      • Doris

        Vic: "hence Creation"

        To clarify, Vic, what you are really referring to is the creation of this universe in the form that we are able to understand, because that newer form since the bang is what we've only been able to observe. As has been pointed out many times before (per nepawoods in the OP), it is unknown what the form was before the bang, and any attempt thus far to describe such, including those involving some deity, is pure speculation mixed with hope; hope to answer other questions, some of which are right before our very eyes; questions about purpose, consciousness and afterlife.

        March 22, 2014 at 10:37 am |
      • ri0088

        @Vic

        You said: "it is a clear indication that the universe had a beginning and expanded at a rate faster than the speed of light, right at that beginning, hence Creation Ex Nihilo."

        The universe as we have it today.... starting at the POINT of EXPANSION.....had a beginning (hence all the matter, physical laws, so forth emerged from that moment). But that's simply describing a formation of the universe. The expansion came from another state the universe was in before it began expanding. So it wasn't out of nothing. Something was there existing to expand from. The big bang theory does not go before the expansion. It only explains the point of expansion. So....NO creation ex nihilo. Sorry.

        March 22, 2014 at 11:29 am |
  3. Rainer Helmut Braendlein

    The actual issue is not, if there is a God or not, but the issue is, how we can live as faithful Christians in an antichristian world.

    I guess that for many people simply the price they had to pay, if they would follow Jesus, is too high. There is no problem to believe in God's existence, but it is a real problem to obey him in this bad world without facing great loss (money, relations, power, honor, material wealth, etc.)

    According to Charles Wright Mills and David Rothkopf the power elite of the Western World has become quite antichristian or materialistic. Former times the Western leaders were not totally antichristian, but today they are. Seemingly, they don't want to be reminded of any Christian faith be any lousy, backward Christians. They prefer "subjects" having more or less an animal behaviour. You are allowed to behave like a beast as long as you work like a horse (only your performance counts, nothing else). Seemingly, they (the power elite) want to deprive us of any opportunity to think about spiritual matters, or to contemplate. It is clear that it is very hard, nearly impossible, for a Christian today to survive in that demonic system, and one can only hope that Jesus will return soon, and kills those godless leaders.

    Conclusion: God certainly exists (just watch the sun, the moon and the stars he created). The issue just is, how we can follow his Son Jesus in a totally godless world. At least, we should be so honest, not to deny God's existence, but admit that we are to coward to follow him.

    Let us pray that God releases us from any cowardice. Long-term we will get a great reward.

    March 22, 2014 at 9:51 am |
    • nepawoods

      "how we can live as faithful Christians in an antichristian world"

      The world is not anti-Christian, it's just more knowledgeable and rational.

      You can be faithful. You can't claim there's rational evidence for what you have faith in.

      "one can only hope that Jesus will return soon, and kills those godless leaders."

      That's nice. Hang on to that hope.

      "Conclusion: God certainly exists (just watch the sun, the moon and the stars he created)."

      We have better explanations.

      March 22, 2014 at 10:10 am |
      • Rainer Helmut Braendlein

        Even rationalism can be an idol.

        March 22, 2014 at 10:13 am |
        • whippstippler7

          @ rainier – even Billy can be an Idol

          March 22, 2014 at 10:44 am |
    • Jill

      Rainer Braendlein, don't obfuscate the primary prenuptials with rasberries. Often, the pertinent cat presents fabled necessities in the parking chamfer. Realize your net precedent. Triangulate! Save the best for the alligators. Ever the bastille notches the orchestra but Wendy is not green and horses will capitulate. Filter out the log from the turnstile and cry prevalently.

      So there brown stare. Feed your inner walnut and resolve. Subject your lemon to the ingenious door in the presence of snow and animals. Aisle 7 is for the monetary cheese whiz. Faced with the kitchen, you may wish to prolong the sailboat in the cliff. Otherwise, rabbits may descend on your left nostril. Think about how you can stripe the sea.

      Regale the storm to those who (6) would thump the parrot with the armband. Corner the market on vestiges of the apparent closure but seek not the evidential circumstance. Therein you can find indignant mountains of pigs and apples. Descend eloquently as you debate the ceiling of your warning fulcrum. Vacate the corncob profusely and and don’t dote on the pancreas.

      Next up, control your wood. Have at the cat with your watch on the fore. Aft! Smarties (12)! Rome wasn’t kevetched in an autumn nightie. (42) See yourself for the turntable on the escalator. Really peruse the garage spider definitely again again with brown. Now we have an apparent congestion, so be it here. Just a moment is not a pod of beef for the ink well nor can it be (4) said that Karen was there in the millpond.

      Garbage out just like the candle in the kitty so. Go, go, go until the vacuum meets the upward vacation. Sell the yellow. Then trim the bus before the ten cheese please Louise. Segregate from the koan and stew the ship vigorously.

      And remember, never pass up an opportunity to watch an elephant paint Mozart.

      March 22, 2014 at 10:34 am |
  4. CJ

    The prevalent theory of cosmic origins prior to the Big Bang theory was the “Steady State,” which argued that the universe has always existed, without a beginning that necessitated a cause.

    However, this new evidence strongly suggests that there was a beginning to our universe.

    If the universe did indeed have a beginning, by the simple logic of cause and effect, there had to be an agent – separate and apart from the effect – that caused it.

    That sounds a lot like Genesis 1:1 to me: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the Earth.”

    –>Agree

    So this latest discovery is good news for us believers, as it adds scientific support to the idea that the universe was caused – or created – by something or someone outside it and not dependent on it.

    –>Agree

    As a modern believer and a scientist, when I look up at the sky on a clear starry night, I am reminded that “the heavens declare the glory of God” (Psalm 19:1). I am in awe of the complexity of the physical world, and how all of its pieces fit together so perfectly and synergistically.

    –>Agree

    As we observe the complexity of the cosmos, from subatomic particles to dark matter and dark energy, we quickly conclude that there must be a more satisfying explanation than random chance. Properly practiced, science can be an act of worship in looking at God’s revelation of himself in nature.

    –>Agree

    The author of this article comes across as extremely articulate and is able to communicate very effectively the proof for footprints of God when it comes to discussion around the science behind origins.

    March 22, 2014 at 9:36 am |
    • CJ

      A big round of applause for the author of this article, Leslie Wickman!
      Brilliantly written!

      March 22, 2014 at 9:38 am |
    • saggyroy

      It seems that religion accepts science if it fits their world view. The same scientific method that allowed us to detect the gravity waves, also brought us evolution, and yet when it comes to accepting evolution as a fact, there is a battle between the secular and religious. I don't see how you accept this and not the other. The religious like to move the goal posts.

      March 22, 2014 at 9:43 am |
      • Dalahäst

        “A scientific discovery is also a religious discovery. There is no conflict between science and religion. Our knowledge of God is made larger with every discovery we make about the world.”

        –Joseph H. Taylor, Jr.

        I agree with Taylor. Science helps us understand our natural and physical world better. Which gives some of us a better understanding of God. There is nothing in my religion that involve moving goal posts to accommodate science. And some people from my religion are scoring touchdowns on the field of science and they testify it improves their understanding of God.

        March 22, 2014 at 9:51 am |
        • ausphor

          Dala...
          Just interested on why you never refute some of the things Vic posts that you do not believe? You are so different in your Christian beliefs, I would think you may want to set him straight the way you correct all the atheists that you disagree with.

          March 22, 2014 at 10:11 am |
        • Dalahäst

          Most people I disagree with are not atheists. Some are deists, like you. But, some anti-theists, who say things like "religion opposes science" that I will disagree with.

          I have discussed my difference with Vic. I don't need to keep expressing those differences. Sorry you didn't see that discussion. No big deal. I'm not going to follow him around and make wrong assumptions like you sometimes do about me.

          March 22, 2014 at 10:33 am |
        • Bob

          AE/Dala as usual trys to pass off another unsupported (and unsupportable) assumption, " Which gives some of us a better understanding of God. " Umm, no, generally so far science has mainly shown us that the statements about god in the Christian bible are nonsense. Love that flat/round earth and those mustard trees too.

          And how do diseases spread again? According to which version of your nasty holy book?

          Ask the questions. Break the chains. Join the movement.
          Be free of Christianity and other superstitions.
          http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/

          March 22, 2014 at 10:41 am |
        • ausphor

          Dala...
          You are quite correct that I did read between the lines and made assumptions about you because you were very difficult to pin down. Since I have found out more about your belief system I no longer jump to conclusions about you, check the posts if you do not believe me. While I still see you as pompous and arrogant that has more to do with the tone of your condescending posts. Missed any discussion you had with Vic, how about wilburw7, interested what you would have to say to him.

          March 22, 2014 at 10:48 am |
        • Dalahäst

          I see you as pompous and arrogant, too. Maybe that is why you are so interested in me? I'm not that familiar with wilburw7. Why does it matter to you?
          Why don't you focus on what you would say to him and just say it?

          March 22, 2014 at 10:58 am |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          "religion opposes science"

          It depends on the religious belief and it depends on the particular science. Some do more than others.

          But where the 2 really conflict is in how and why they accept claims and come to conclusions.

          March 22, 2014 at 11:03 am |
        • ausphor

          Dala....
          My point being that you seem to lump all the atheists that post here as a group. When it comes to some of the off the wall christians you have nothing to say, you seem to have each others back no matter if your beliefs are so diverse. BTW I do respond to most posters on this blog no matter what their beliefs, including wilbur7.

          March 22, 2014 at 11:04 am |
        • Dalahäst

          Cheese

          I don't have to choose between my religion and science. They are compatible to me.

          “We ask that science remain science and that religion remain religion, two very different, but complementary, forms of truth.”

          March 22, 2014 at 11:07 am |
        • Dalahäst

          No, Ausphor, I don't try to lump all atheists as a group. Please provide me an example where I do.

          I try to indicate what I believe: That some atheists, or more specifically some anti-theists that post on religious blogs, act as though science is exclusively on their side and that religion is inherently anti-science. And that is a pet peeve of mine.

          So, yea, I probably do ignore some other off-the-wall beliefs of others. So do you. So do some atheists. Why not question them, too? There is evidence of them doing that, too.

          March 22, 2014 at 11:11 am |
        • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

          "I don't have to choose between my religion and science. They are compatible to me."

          And I would say generally speaking from what I have seen you write that this is true. I don't think you buck scientific understanding. But there are plenty that do. And it varies from religion to religion as to what form it takes.

          I will give you an example of a religious group that generally accepts science to a point. Catholics accept evolution, cosmololgy, genetics, ect. ect. But at the same time they have promoted the idea in Africa that condoms are not capable of stopping the Aids virus because the Aides Virus is so small it can get through the condom membrane. This is scientifically false but they spread this misinformation in an effort to get people to conform to their dogma.

          March 22, 2014 at 12:04 pm |
      • Vic

        Well, in short, Christians founded the Branches of Modern Science and the Modern Scientific Method. And, 'Origins of species,' aka 'Evolution,' is but an upgraded hypothesis that is NOT proven by the Scientific Method.

        March 22, 2014 at 9:57 am |
        • whippstippler7

          Good one, Vic! What about the Greeks, in terms of Scientific and mathematical reasoning? And as for the origin of species and evolution in terms of the scientific method, that scientific method has given us the ability to decode the DNA genome of many animals, and to show where, back in time, the various relatives of man and modern apes, for example, branched off into separate species.

          March 22, 2014 at 10:49 am |
  5. ThorGoLucky

    The universe had a beginning, therefor an ancient Jewish warrior god made it?

    March 22, 2014 at 9:33 am |
    • saggyroy

      Makes sense to me.

      March 22, 2014 at 9:37 am |
    • whippstippler7

      Well, glad you able to clear that up. Good job!

      March 22, 2014 at 10:54 am |
  6. justsickofit

    "The prevalent theory of cosmic origins prior to the Big Bang theory was the “Steady State,” which argued that the universe has always existed, without a beginning that necessitated a cause."

    The entire premise of this article is based on physicists trusting in the steady state theory. That theory was disproved by Einstein's theory of general relativity, Hubble's discovery of expansion and the 1965 discovery of the cosmic microwave background radiation.

    In short, the steady state theory was put forward by physicists to be consistent with religious beliefs that the universe was unchanging and immutable. It was made perfect, by god, as we see it and has never changed.

    The people who wrote this article know very little about physics and are trying desperately to use anything to prop up their dwindling delusion of religion.

    March 22, 2014 at 9:23 am |
    • distrbnce

      Yeah, this article should have been written when the Big Bang was originally proposed, but I guess this late in the game they didn't want to persecute their own. They don't even persecute the pedophiles these days. Any bad press damages the whole thing.

      This is one of the biggest discoveries of our time, and she's shamelessly riding a wave of popularity and taking advantage of the gullible and naive. Class act, CNN!

      March 22, 2014 at 9:30 am |
  7. fhillscitizen

    I'm not sure why it took me so long to notice this, but NONE of this has anything to do with religion, God, or even the "creation" of the universe.

    The farthest back we can observe is the cosmic background radiation, which is basically a snapshot of the early universe, shortly after the big bang. First, we just sawa wall...Later, as we measured more precisely, we see minor temperature and density fluctuations. Now, traces of gravity waves. All of this helps to determine how the universe formed FROM the Big Bang to today.

    At the moment of the big bang, all the universe was in a single point – A quantum singularity with infinite mass, infinite energy.

    "Evidence (that) strongly suggests that there was a beginning to our universe" would require something to show a "universe" with zero mass, zero energy at the moment of the big bang.

    March 22, 2014 at 8:48 am |
    • nepawoods

      Yes, the Big Bang Theory never stipulates that the universe "popped into existence from nothing".

      March 22, 2014 at 9:52 am |
  8. joeyy1

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

    March 22, 2014 at 8:45 am |
  9. Reality

    What we do know: (from the fields of astrophysics, biology, biochemistry, archeology, nuclear physics, geology and the history of religion)

    1. The Sun will burn out in 3-5 billion years so we have a time frame.

    2. Asteroids continue to circle us in the nearby asteroid belt.

    3. One wayward rock and it is all over in a blast of permanent winter.

    4. There are enough nuclear weapons to do the same job.

    5. Most contemporary NT exegetes do not believe in the Second Coming so apparently there is no concern about JC coming back on an asteroid or cloud of raptors/rapture.

    6. All stars will eventually extinguish as there is a limit to the amount of hydrogen in the universe. When this happens (100 trillion years?), the universe will go dark. If it does not collapse and recycle, the universe will end.

    7. Super, dormant volcanoes off the coast of Africa and under Yellowstone Park could explode cataclysmically at any time ending life on Earth.

    8. Many of us are part Neanderthal and/or Denisovan.

    Bottom line: our apocalypse will start between now and 3-5 billion CE. The universe apocalypse, 100 trillion years?

     http://www.universetoday.com/18847/life-of-the-sun/

    solarsystem.nasa.gov/planets/profile.cfm?Object=Asteroids‎

    http://www.cnn.com/2012/08/30/us/wus-supervolcanoes-yellowstone

    Search for Paul, book by Professor JD Crossan

    Rabbi Paul, book by Professor Bruce Chilton

    https://genographic.nationalgeographic.com/

    http://theextinctionprotocol.wordpress.com/2011/08/22/study-finds-star-formation-declining-throughout-the-universe/

    http://www.un.org/disarmament/WMD/Nuclear/

    Bill Bryson's review in his book, The Short History of Everything

    March 22, 2014 at 8:09 am |
    • davidmer

      Most contemporary NT exegetes do not believe in the Second Coming? Ridiculous. You site a guy (JD Crossan) who believes NOTHING about the NT. Resurrection, divinity, miracles...NOTHING. Pick and choose to make your point.

      March 22, 2014 at 9:05 am |
      • TruthPrevails1

        Not at all unlike christians who pick and choose to fit their delusions.

        March 22, 2014 at 9:16 am |
        • davidmer

          Pick and choose? Afraid not...that is the whole point of Church authority...at least for Catholics.

          March 22, 2014 at 11:33 am |
        • TruthPrevails1

          So you follow every word of the bible? If not then yes it is picking and choosing. I live with a recovering Catholic, I am well aware of the cult.

          March 22, 2014 at 12:09 pm |
        • davidmer

          You need more reading on revelation,exegesis, authority, and scripture...

          ..."recovering" from community, compassion, faith, sheltering the homeless, feeding the hungry, providing for refugees, loving your neighbour, educating those with out education, comforting the dying...etc...etc...etc...those are the ones who need "recovery" and the Church provides it more then any organization in the world.

          March 22, 2014 at 12:45 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          No I don't think so. So all the good they do makes up for the amount of criminals they harbor? All that good can be done without the lies and risk of innocent children being harmed. The bible is not a necessary book in this world, not when it is full of hate, bigotry, oppression, murder...now if you need it to guide you, so be it but not all are so weak.

          March 22, 2014 at 1:42 pm |
        • Reality

          "Googling" religion? How is that any different than reading the references cited by NT exegetes other than it is a lot faster? The results are the same as summarized below:

          To all the misguided "believers" out there, your salvation is at hand:

          Tis mind boggling that your religions can be brought down to earth in less than ten seconds.

          Again for the new members:

          To wit:

          Putting the kibosh on all religion in less than ten seconds: Priceless !!!

          • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Abraham i.e. the foundations of Judaism, Christianity and Islam are non-existent.

          • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Moses i.e. the pillars of Judaism, Christianity and Islam have no strength of purpose.

          • There was no Gabriel i.e. Islam fails as a religion. Christianity partially fails.

          • There was no Easter i.e. Christianity completely fails as a religion.

          • There was no Moroni i.e. Mormonism is nothing more than a business cult.

          • Sacred/revered cows, monkey gods, castes, reincarnations and therefore Hinduism fails as a religion.

          • Fat Buddhas here, skinny Buddhas there, reincarnated/reborn Buddhas everywhere makes for a no on Buddhism.

          Added details are available-

          A quick search will put the kibosh on any other groups calling themselves a religion.

          e.g. Taoism

          "The origins of Taoism are unclear. Traditionally, Lao-tzu who lived in the sixth century is regarded as its founder. Its early philosophic foundations and its later beliefs and rituals are two completely different ways of life. Today (1982) Taoism claims 31,286,000 followers.

          Legend says that Lao-tzu was immaculately conceived by a shooting star; carried in his mother's womb for eighty-two years; and born a full grown wise old man. "

          March 22, 2014 at 10:09 pm |
        • davidmer

          Too true....one sided research is the same no matter if you google it or go to the library....

          March 23, 2014 at 7:02 am |
      • Reality

        Professor Bruce Chilton has already been noted. Add the following to the list

        •Alvar Ellegård
        •G. A. Wells
        •Gregory Riley
        •Robert Eisenman
        •Robert Funk
        •Burton Mack
        •Stephen J. Patterson
        •Marcus Borg
        •Stevan Davies
        •Geza Vermes
        •Richard Horsley
        •Hyam Maccoby
        •Gerd Theissen
        •Bart Ehrman
        •Paula Fredriksen
        •Gerd Lüdemann
        •John P. Meier
        •E. P. Sanders

        March 22, 2014 at 10:49 am |
        • davidmer

          None have had or will have any influence. But they are popular to those who need reassurance.

          March 22, 2014 at 11:30 am |
        • davidmer

          Here is a list of those who actually believe:

          Adelard of Bath
          Albertus Magnus
          Albert of Saxony
          Alexander of Hales
          Anselm of Canterbury
          Augustine of Hippo
          Francis of Assisi
          Thomas Aquinas
          Bonaventure
          Catherine of Siena
          Desiderius Erasmus
          Peter Faber
          Jean Gerson
          Giles of Rome
          Godfrey of Fontaines
          Robert Grosseteste
          Henry of Ghent
          Ignatius of Loyola
          Peter Lombard
          Ramon Llull
          John Mair
          Sylvester Mazzolini
          Luis Molina
          Thomas More
          Franciscus Patricius
          Péter Pázmány
          Giovanni Pico della Mirandola
          Radbertus
          Matthias Tanner
          Duns Scotus
          Francisco de Vitoria
          Michael Wadding
          William of Alnwick
          William of Ockham
          William of Ware

          March 22, 2014 at 11:40 am |
        • davidmer

          Twentieth century and today[edit]

          Mortimer Jerome Adler; converted to Catholicism in 2000
          Mariano Artigas
          G. E. M. Anscombe
          Thomas Berry
          Józef Maria Bocheński
          Leonardo Boff
          Joseph A. Bracken
          Henri Brémond
          Raymond E. Brown
          Jay Budziszewski
          Christopher Butler
          Hélder Câmara
          Olavo de Carvalho
          Michel de Certeau
          Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
          G. K. Chesterton
          Joan Chittister
          Jean-Louis Chrétien
          Paul Claudel
          Yves Congar
          Frederick Copleston
          Henri de Lubac
          Mary Daly
          Henry Denifle
          Peter Dens
          Miguel A. De La Torre
          Michael Dummett
          Louis Dupre
          Jacques Dupuis
          Ignacio Ellacuría
          Cornelio Fabro
          Elisabeth Schussler Fiorenza
          Joseph Fitzmyer
          John Finnis
          Matthew Fox (priest)
          Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange
          Peter Geach
          Robert P. George
          Étienne Gilson
          René Girard

          March 22, 2014 at 11:41 am |
        • davidmer

          Just the tip of the ice burg:

          Martin Rhonheimer
          Jacek Salij
          James V. Schall
          Max Scheler
          Edward Schillebeeckx
          Piet Schoonenberg
          Angelo Scola
          Antonin Sertillanges
          Yves Simon
          Jon Sobrino
          Robert Spaemann
          Michael Kheirabi
          Edith Stein
          Charles Taylor
          František Tomášek
          Joseph de Torre
          David Tracy
          Karel Vladimir Truhlar
          Aleš Ušeničnik
          Cyril O'Regan
          Jean Vanier
          Bas van Fraassen
          Gianni Vattimo
          Hans Urs von Balthasar
          Dietrich von Hildebrand
          Oswald von Nell-Breuning
          Thomas Weinandy
          C. J. F. Williams
          Carol Zaleski
          Hector Zagal

          March 22, 2014 at 11:43 am |
      • Reality

        Regarding Professor Crossan:

        (from his 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."

        Bottom line: Crossan, an ex-RCC priest, still believes that there is a god. He, however, after thorough review (over 20 books) of all the scriptures and archeology involved does not believe all the Catholic hype about v-irgin births, resurrections, ascensions, a-ssumptions etc.

        March 22, 2014 at 10:58 am |
        • davidmer

          "after thorough review (over 20 books) of all the scriptures and archeology involved" – what? You have to be joking....the Roman Catholic Church has been around for 2000 years and guys like Crossan have been around since the beginning and have never had any influence. Croassan is the same. 20 books? Who cares... you think he is "mainstream" because he fits your worldview.

          March 22, 2014 at 11:29 am |
        • Reality

          For everyone's worldview:

          Only for the new members of this blog:

          From Professors Crossan and Watts' book, Who is Jesus.

          "That Jesus was crucified under Pontius Pilate, as the Creed states, is as certain as anything historical can ever be.

          “ The Jewish historian, Josephus and the pagan historian Tacitus both agree that Jesus was executed by order of the Roman governor of Judea. And is very hard to imagine that Jesus' followers would have invented such a story unless it indeed happened.

          “While the brute fact that of Jesus' death by crucifixion is historically certain, however, those detailed narratives in our present gospels are much more problematic. "

          “My best historical reconstruction would be something like this. Jesus was arrested during the Passover festival, most likely in response to his action in the Temple. Those who were closest to him ran away for their own safety.

          I do not presume that there were any high-level confrontations between Caiaphas and Pilate and Herod Antipas either about Jesus or with Jesus. No doubt they would have agreed before the festival that fast action was to be taken against any disturbance and that a few examples by crucifixion might be especially useful at the outset. And I doubt very much if Jewish police or Roman soldiers needed to go too far up the chain of command in handling a Galilean peasant like Jesus. It is hard for us to imagine the casual brutality with which Jesus was probably taken and executed. All those "last week" details in our gospels, as distinct from the brute facts just mentioned, are prophecy turned into history, rather than history remembered."

          See also Professor Crossan's reviews of the existence of Jesus in his other books especially, The Historical Jesus and also Excavating Jesus (with Professor Jonathan Reed doing the archeology discussion) .

          Other NT exegetes to include members of the Jesus Seminar have published similar books with appropriate supporting references.

          Part of Crossan's The Historical Jesus has been published online at books.google.com/books.

          There is also a search engine for this book on the right hand side of the opening page. e.g. Search Josephus

          See also Wikipedia's review on the historical Jesus to include the Tacitus' reference to the crucifixion of Jesus.

          From ask.com,

          "One of the greatest historians of ancient Rome, Cornelius Tacitus is a primary source for much of what is known about life the first and second centuries after the life of Jesus. His most famous works, Histories and Annals, exist in fragmentary form, though many of his earlier writings were lost to time. Tacitus is known for being generally reliable (if somewhat biased toward what he saw as Roman immorality) and for having a uniquely direct (if not blunt) writing style.

          Then there are these scriptural references:

          Crucifixion of Jesus:(1) 1 Cor 15:3b; (2a) Gos. Pet. 4:10-5:16,18-20; 6:22; (2b) Mark 15:22-38 = Matt 27:33-51a = Luke 23:32-46; (2c) John 19:17b-25a,28-36; (3) Barn. 7:3-5; (4a) 1 Clem. 16:3-4 (=Isaiah 53:1-12); (4b) 1 Clem. 16.15-16 (=Psalm 22:6-8); (5a) Ign. Mag. 11; (5b) Ign. Trall. 9:1b; (5c) Ign. Smyrn. 1.2.- (read them all at wiki.faithfutures. Crucifixion org/index.php/005_Crucifixion_Of_Jesus )

          Added suggested readings:

          o 1. Historical Jesus Theories, earlychristianwritings.com/theories.htm – the names of many of the contemporary historical Jesus scholars and the ti-tles of their over 100 books on the subject.
          o
          2. Early Christian Writings, earlychristianwritings.com/
          – a list of early Christian doc-uments to include the year of publication–

          30-60 CE Passion Narrative
          40-80 Lost Sayings Gospel Q
          50-60 1 Thessalonians
          50-60 Philippians
          50-60 Galatians
          50-60 1 Corinthians
          50-60 2 Corinthians
          50-60 Romans
          50-60 Philemon
          50-80 Colossians
          50-90 Signs Gospel
          50-95 Book of Hebrews
          50-120 Didache
          50-140 Gospel of Thomas
          50-140 Oxyrhynchus 1224 Gospel
          50-200 Sophia of Jesus Christ
          65-80 Gospel of Mark
          70-100 Epistle of James
          70-120 Egerton Gospel
          70-160 Gospel of Peter
          70-160 Secret Mark
          70-200 Fayyum Fragment
          70-200 Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs
          73-200 Mara Bar Serapion
          80-100 2 Thessalonians
          80-100 Ephesians
          80-100 Gospel of Matthew
          80-110 1 Peter
          80-120 Epistle of Barnabas
          80-130 Gospel of Luke
          80-130 Acts of the Apostles
          80-140 1 Clement
          80-150 Gospel of the Egyptians
          80-150 Gospel of the Hebrews
          80-250 Christian Sibyllines
          90-95 Apocalypse of John
          90-120 Gospel of John
          90-120 1 John
          90-120 2 John
          90-120 3 John
          90-120 Epistle of Jude
          93 Flavius Josephus
          100-150 1 Timothy
          100-150 2 Timothy
          100-150 T-itus
          100-150 Apocalypse of Peter
          100-150 Secret Book of James
          100-150 Preaching of Peter
          100-160 Gospel of the Ebionites
          100-160 Gospel of the Nazoreans
          100-160 Shepherd of Hermas
          100-160 2 Peter

          3. Historical Jesus Studies, faithfutures.org/HJstudies.html,
          – "an extensive and constantly expanding literature on historical research into the person and cultural context of Jesus of Nazareth"
          4. Jesus Database, faithfutures.org/JDB/intro.html–"The JESUS DATABASE is an online annotated inventory of the traditions concerning the life and teachings of Jesus that have survived from the first three centuries of the Common Era. It includes both canonical and extra-canonical materials, and is not limited to the traditions found within the Christian New Testament."
          5. Josephus on Jesus mtio.com/articles/bissar24.htm
          6. The Jesus Seminar, mystae.com/restricted/reflections/messiah/seminar.html#Criteria
          7. Writing the New Testament- mystae.com/restricted/reflections/messiah/testament.html
          8. Health and Healing in the Land of Israel By Joe Zias
          joezias.com/HealthHealingLandIsrael.htm
          9. Economics in First Century Palestine, K.C. Hanson and D. E. Oakman, Palestine in the Time of Jesus, Fortress Press, 1998.

          Added references are available:

          March 22, 2014 at 2:04 pm |
        • davidmer

          Just like I said...you found someone to fit your world view.

          March 22, 2014 at 2:24 pm |
        • davidmer

          "For eveyone new to this blog" More like "for everyone new to my view point".

          March 22, 2014 at 2:36 pm |
        • Reality

          The Apostles' Creed 2014: (updated by yours truly and based on the studies of historians and theologians of the past 200 years)

          Should I believe in a god whose existence cannot be proven
          and said god if he/she/it exists resides in an unproven,
          human-created, spirit state of bliss called heaven??

          I believe there was a 1st century CE, Jewish, simple,
          preacher-man who was conceived by a Jewish carpenter
          named Joseph living in Nazareth and born of a young Jewish
          girl named Mary. (Some say he was a mamzer.)

          Jesus was summarily crucified for being a temple rabble-rouser by
          the Roman troops in Jerusalem serving under Pontius Pilate,

          He was buried in an unmarked grave and still lies
          a-mouldering in the ground somewhere outside of
          Jerusalem.

          Said Jesus' story was embellished and "mythicized" by
          many semi-fiction writers. A descent into Hell, a bodily resurrection
          and ascension stories were promulgated to compete with the
          Caesar myths. Said stories were so popular that they
          grew into a religion known today as Catholicism/Christianity
          and featuring dark-age, daily wine to blood and bread to body rituals
          called the eucharistic sacrifice of the non-atoning Jesus.

          Amen
          (references used are those previously noted and a number of others)

          March 22, 2014 at 2:39 pm |
        • davidmer

          btw I also saw your "list" for historical writings on Wikipedia, they mean nothing:

          As far as the historical Jesus.

          -People closest to the events (the first Christians) died for their witness ...not for "faith" in the events (like todays martyrs) but for what they would have seen with their own eyes. They would have known it was a lie if it never really happened...yet they gave their lives.

          -There was no interest by early Christian's in the Tomb of Jesus, even though the Jewish people venerated the tombs of the prophets with great care. No one really knows where the tomb of Jesus is even today. There was no interest in finding it for 400 years. If it is true that the story of the resurrection was made up later and Jesus was "just a good man killed by the Romans" there certainly would not have been this level disinterest in the burial place of such a great man. Even if early Christian's were persecuted by the Jewish authorities, they would have know where the tomb was and venerated it...but that never happened.

          – Dr. Peter Williams has studied the way the Gospel writers used names (onomastics). Common names of a time period can be used to validate sources, eg. if I said Myrtle and Horatio started a .com company in 2001, you would have cause to doubt. Dr. Williams shows that this criticism is not applicable to the Gospels. The writers accurate use of common names of the time shows they had access to reliable information about the people and places involved in the history of Jesus and that their writings took place at about the same time as the events (there would have been no way to access information regarding names of that time hundreds of years after the period, remember, no books, no libraries, etc.)

          March 22, 2014 at 2:54 pm |
      • davidmer

        You need more reading on revelation,exegesis, authority, and scripture...

        ..."recovering" from community, compassion, faith, sheltering the homeless, feeding the hungry, providing for refugees, loving your neighbour, educating those with out education, comforting the dying...etc...etc...etc...those are the ones who need "recovery" and the Church provides it more then any organization in the world.

        March 22, 2014 at 12:44 pm |
        • Reality

          Actually, the USA taxpayers far exceed any other group for the assistance to the needy.

          March 22, 2014 at 2:12 pm |
        • davidmer

          US tax payers have been around for 2000 years and advocated for the poor in almost every country in the world. Many that don't even exist today. Really.....

          March 22, 2014 at 3:03 pm |
        • Reality

          Only for the those interested in a religious update: ( and new to this blog)

          1. origin: http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F20E1EFE35540C7A8CDDAA0894DA404482

          “New Torah For Modern Minds

          Abraham, the Jewish patriarch, probably never existed. Nor did Moses. The entire Exodus story as recounted in the Bible probably never occurred. The same is true of the tumbling of the walls of Jericho. And David, far from being the fearless king who built Jerusalem into a mighty capital, was more likely a provincial leader whose reputation was later magnified to provide a rallying point for a fledgling nation.

          Such startling propositions – the product of findings by archaeologists digging in Israel and its environs over the last 25 years – have gained wide acceptance among non-Orthodox rabbis. But there has been no attempt to disseminate these ideas or to discuss them with the laity – until now.

          The United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, which represents the 1.5 million Conservative Jews in the United States, has just issued a new Torah and commentary, the first for Conservatives in more than 60 years. Called "Etz Hayim" ("Tree of Life" in Hebrew), it offers an interpretation that incorporates the latest findings from archaeology, philology, anthropology and the study of ancient cultures. To the editors who worked on the book, it represents one of the boldest efforts ever to introduce into the religious mainstream a view of the Bible as a human rather than divine docu-ment. “
          prob•a•bly
          Adverb: Almost certainly; as far as one knows or can tell.

          2. Jesus was an illiterate Jewish peasant/carpenter/simple preacher man who suffered from hallucinations (or “mythicizing” from P, M, M, L and J) and who has been characterized anywhere from the Messiah from Nazareth to a mythical character from mythical Nazareth to a ma-mzer from Nazareth (Professor Bruce Chilton, in his book Rabbi Jesus). An-alyses of Jesus’ life by many contemporary NT scholars (e.g. Professors Ludemann, Crossan, Borg and Fredriksen, ) via the NT and related doc-uments have concluded that only about 30% of Jesus' sayings and ways noted in the NT were authentic. The rest being embellishments (e.g. miracles)/hallucinations made/had by the NT authors to impress various Christian, Jewish and Pagan sects.

          The 30% of the NT that is "authentic Jesus" like everything in life was borrowed/plagiarized and/or improved from those who came before. In Jesus' case, it was the ways and sayings of the Babylonians, Greeks, Persians, Egyptians, Hitt-ites, Canaanites, OT, John the Baptizer and possibly the ways and sayings of traveling Greek Cynics.

          earlychristianwritings.com/

          For added "pizzazz", Catholic theologians divided god the singularity into three persons and invented atonement as an added guilt trip for the "pew people" to go along with this trinity of overseers. By doing so, they made god the padre into god the "filicider".

          Current RCC problems:

          Pedophiliac priests, an all-male, mostly white hierarchy, atonement theology and original sin!!!!

          2 b., Luther, Calvin, Joe Smith, Henry VIII, Wesley, Roger Williams, the Great “Babs” et al, founders of Christian-based religions or combination religions also suffered from the belief in/hallucinations of "pretty wingie thingie" visits and "prophecies" for profits analogous to the myths of Catholicism (resurrections, apparitions, ascensions and immacu-late co-nceptions).

          Current problems:
          Adulterous preachers, pedophiliac clerics, "propheteering/ profiteering" evangelicals and atonement theology,

          3. Mohammed was an illiterate, womanizing, lust and greed-driven, warmongering, hallucinating Arab, who also had embellishing/hallucinating/plagiarizing scribal biographers who not only added "angels" and flying chariots to the koran but also a militaristic agenda to support the plundering and looting of the lands of non-believers.

          This agenda continues as shown by the ma-ssacre in Mumbai, the as-sas-sinations of Bhutto and Theo Van Gogh, the conduct of the seven Muslim doctors in the UK, the 9/11 terrorists, the 24/7 Sunni suicide/roadside/market/mosque bombers, the 24/7 Shiite suicide/roadside/market/mosque bombers, the Islamic bombers of the trains in the UK and Spain, the Bali crazies, the Kenya crazies, the Pakistani “koranics”, the Palestine suicide bombers/rocketeers, the Lebanese nutcases, the Taliban nut jobs, the Ft. Hood follower of the koran, and the Filipino “koranics”.

          And who funds this muck and stench of terror? The warmongering, Islamic, Shiite terror and torture theocracy of Iran aka the Third Axis of Evil and also the Sunni "Wannabees" of Saudi Arabia.

          Current crises:

          The Sunni-Shiite blood feud and the warmongering, womanizing (11 wives), hallucinating founder.

          4. Hinduism (from an online Hindu site) – "Hinduism cannot be described as an organized religion. It is not founded by any individual. Hinduism is God centered and therefore one can call Hinduism as founded by God, because the answer to the question ‘Who is behind the eternal principles and who makes them work?’ will have to be ‘Cosmic power, Divine power, God’."

          The caste/laborer system, reincarnation and cow worship/reverence are problems when saying a fair and rational God founded Hinduism."

          Current problems:

          The caste system, reincarnation and cow worship/reverence.

          5. Buddhism- "Buddhism began in India about 500 years before the birth of Christ. The people living at that time had become disillusioned with certain beliefs of Hinduism including the caste system, which had grown extremely complex. The number of outcasts (those who did not belong to any particular caste) was continuing to grow."

          "However, in Buddhism, like so many other religions, fanciful stories arose concerning events in the life of the founder, Siddhartha Gautama (fifth century B.C.):"

          Archaeological discoveries have proved, beyond a doubt, his historical character, but apart from the legends we know very little about the circu-mstances of his life. e.g. Buddha by one legend was supposedly talking when he came out of his mother's womb.

          Bottom line: There are many good ways of living but be aware of the hallucinations, embellishments, lies, and myths surrounding the founders and foundations of said rules of life.

          Then, apply the Five F rule: "First Find the Flaws, then Fix the Foundations". And finally there will be religious peace and religious awareness in the world!!!!!

          March 22, 2014 at 5:08 pm |
        • davidmer

          "Only for the those interested in a religious update: ( and new to this blog)" – What is said....

          What it means....

          "Only for those interested in my particular slant on religion (and who are new to my particular way of Googling religion)

          March 22, 2014 at 6:21 pm |
  10. Solomon Walker

    Is the FBI a believer, yet?

    March 22, 2014 at 8:01 am |
  11. brianz72

    This "argument" is just a rehashing of the tired old "first cause fallacy" of religious believers. So okay, a god created the Big Bang. Who created this god? A super-god? And who created the super-god? Mega-god?
    http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Argument_from_first_cause

    March 22, 2014 at 8:00 am |
    • Dalahäst

      Uh, Rational Wiki doesn't define "First Causation" as a logical fallacy.

      It just goes onto to say some use logical fallacies to try and defend it.

      Just because we and our universe are not eternal, does not mean that God or the energy that created the universe is not eternal. Stating that since we have a beginning and end means that God has a beginning and end could be considered a logical fallacy. Of course, you didn't state that. You just asked questions.

      March 22, 2014 at 8:22 am |
    • jbc630

      The origin of the universe can only have one of three kinds of rational explanations. Scientific, essential, or personal. Science being laws acting on initial conditions, it cannot explain the origin of the universe since the universe IS the laws and conditions we are talking about. The universe is not the kind of thing that is essential, such as a triangle. Therefore, the universe must have a personal explanation, God, who cannot be explained rationally by an infinite series of superior gods as you agree. He is explained rationally because he is somehow essential.

      March 22, 2014 at 9:33 am |
      • whippstippler7

        "personal" isn't a rational explanation.

        March 22, 2014 at 10:55 am |
  12. dyinggladiator

    "We also need to remember that God reveals himself both through scripture and creation." Then why were 26 of the original 30 Gospels taken out of the Bible?

    March 22, 2014 at 7:54 am |
    • whippstippler7

      Y'ar!!!! Because this here God a yours be a crafty bugger!

      March 22, 2014 at 10:56 am |
  13. dyinggladiator

    "If the universe did indeed have a beginning, by the simple logic of cause and effect, there had to be an agent – separate and apart from the effect – that caused it." ...Ok- Since we are using that logic, then who made the "agent"?

    March 22, 2014 at 7:52 am |
    • pourmonamijc

      I am with you, this is exactly the next logical question coming to mind. As a Catholic believer, I was taught that God's mind is infinite and mine is finite so obviously, there will be many things I won't be able to wrap my head around. Personally, I can live with that. I was also taught that you can not read the Bible by yourself and understand it correctly. That's why the Catholic church considers Sola Scriptura a heresy. And I agree with many atheists that to take the Bible literally leads, in many cases, to utter stupidity. That's why faith and reason are a must providing one can be objective. I found that objectivity is one of the major game changer.

      March 22, 2014 at 8:18 am |
      • noheavononearth

        You can't wrap your head around the bible because it is nothing more than an ancient fable from the past and has no relevance with the advent of modern science and modern civilization. You need those within the church to teach you, the same church that has condoned and hidden the behavior of the pedophiles whom have destroyed the lives of many.....all in the name of god. Like others who believe only in their god, but dismiss all others, you need to ask more questions....which s what we as Scientists do, and explains why we continue to advance our knowledge about the world and the universe whilst you remain in the "dark ages"
        Noah's ark my ass......

        March 22, 2014 at 10:57 am |
  14. pourmonamijc

    Atheist-turned-agnostic astronomer Fred Hoyle, who coined the term “Big Bang,”

    Please make sure NOT to mention that Monseigneur Georges Henri Joseph Édouard Lemaître, a Belgian catholic priest is consider in real scientific circle to be the father of the Big Bang theory. Objectivity please, objectivity.

    March 22, 2014 at 7:34 am |
    • TruthPrevails1

      Definitions are hard for you I see!! Atheist and agnostic are two different things...one defines belief/disbelief, the other defines knowledge.

      March 22, 2014 at 7:37 am |
      • Dalahäst

        The dictionary disagrees with you:

        ag·nos·tic
        [ag-nos-tik] Show IPA
        noun
        1.
        a person who holds that the existence of the ultimate cause, as God, and the essential nature of things are unknown and unknowable, or that human knowledge is limited to experience.

        2.
        a person who denies or doubts the possibility of ultimate knowledge in some area of study.

        3.
        a person who holds neither of two opposing positions on a topic: Socrates was an agnostic on the subject of immortality.

        http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/agnostic

        a·the·ist
        [ey-thee-ist] Show IPA
        noun
        a person who denies or disbelieves the existence of a supreme being or beings.

        http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/atheist

        March 22, 2014 at 8:37 am |
      • Dalahäst

        Whoops, sorry. I misread your statements. My mistake. Nevermind.

        March 22, 2014 at 8:38 am |
        • Dalahäst

          Actually you missed the OP's point: he didn't say atheism and agnosticism are the same thing. Hence – "atheist turned agnostic"

          March 22, 2014 at 8:41 am |
        • the0g0to0the0t

          I think the point is that they are separate categories. I am an agnostic atheist. The 2 terms speaks to 2 different items. One is a statement of knowledge (gnosis) the other of belief.

          March 22, 2014 at 9:01 am |
        • Dalahäst

          Some dictionaries do not define it that way. I know the words have origins that suggest they should, but the English language isn't required to follow other languages' rules.

          I'm Christian. But I'm agnostic on some subjects – like the afterlife. But to the existence of God I am not agnostic.

          March 22, 2014 at 9:08 am |
        • Dalahäst

          Or I used to identify as an agnostic. But I don't anymore, because I believe in God.

          March 22, 2014 at 9:09 am |
        • g2dat

          Then you are a gnostic theist christian. Is it really so bad to have a distinction between the terms? How else should I describe my views?

          I don't believe enough evidence has been provided to prove the existence of a "god" of any kind. As such, I default to the null hypothesis and don't believe until satisfactory evidence has been provided.

          I don't claim certainty (knowledge hence agnostic) but I lack a belief in any gods (atheism). It may be symatics, but without consensus of definition, we will always be speaking past each other.

          March 23, 2014 at 1:51 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          I'm sometimes an agnostic theist.

          March 24, 2014 at 4:50 pm |
  15. haakpaypal

    What shall be great is when our Lord Jesus Christ comes down from Heaven and makes you all BOW to make you realize that He is the ONE the Only one who should be treated as a KING. Making you all realize holy sugar snaps there he is the one that was said to not exist by people who are Star Scientists who do nothing but Yell as if if anyone with half a mind would listen to a mental Gap who can no longer speak without yelling and having a tantrum. I feel bad for those who choose to hate someone they know not of and you would rather have a SATAN statue than believe in our Lord Almighty sad is the only word I can use worse is that you tell your children that NO there is no GOD and you shall not be saved son or daughter. CHRIST has been wonderful to me and I pray for those who do not believe but as it is written it shall be done.

    March 22, 2014 at 7:29 am |
    • TruthPrevails1

      What will be great is wen you provide the evidence to support your imaginary friends existence! How sad that you deny real evidence for a 2000 year old book that has never been updated and can be proven to be false on numerous things...a book written by primitive man to fool the gullible out of money and make them live in fear.

      March 22, 2014 at 7:34 am |
    • TruthPrevails1

      We don't hate something we don't believe in. We are not harming our children, you would be the one doing that-no decent loving parent raises their child to think that if they fail to worship god, they will be tortured in a burning pit.
      Most of us were christian until we read that book with an open-mind and saw the god of the bible as the vicious monster it is portrayed as and realized that outside of your story book, there is no evidence supporting your gods existence.
      Do you follow the book to the letter? Do you beat your children? Do you own slaves? Do you hate LGBT and believe they are bad? Do you prevent your wife from doing as she wishes with her own body or from speaking?
      The hypocrisy within your ilk is disgusting and harmful to society. Time to join us in the 21st century and learn to suck it up, your belief system is dying off for the betterment of our species.

      March 22, 2014 at 7:43 am |
    • whippstippler7

      @ Haak: so God's going to show up and make us bow down??? Really? What if we don't want to bow down before him? What if we want to stand up to him, and say, look, buddy, you made us with great big questioning brains, and so we used our brains to question your existence because you did such a crappy job with that dumb book you call the bible trying to convince people you exist. Why should we bow down to that???

      Are you a parent? Do you make your children bow down before you??? Only an insecure bully would resort to something so childish. But then, when you read the bible, you realize that your god IS an insecure bully. And a genocidal, misogynistic, hateful monster.

      Bow down? Nope. But I would turn around, drop my drawers, and tell your god to kiss my big hairy butt.

      March 22, 2014 at 8:25 am |
    • fhillscitizen

      When he makes you bow, you will know he is the false god.

      March 22, 2014 at 8:52 am |
  16. gauge2

    No.

    March 22, 2014 at 7:05 am |
  17. dancmh

    Christians will latch onto anything to justify their belief in their sky god. I could just as well say the Big Bang is proof of Odin because he killed all the Frost Giants. Frost Giants are cold and cold causes things to contract rather than expand...so no frost giants equals universal warmth and expansion so praise Odin.

    March 22, 2014 at 6:32 am |
  18. elijahmorris01

    THE BIG BANG WAS NO AN EXPLOSION IT WAS JUST EXPANSION!!!!

    March 22, 2014 at 5:32 am |
    • nepawoods

      They even say that in the first line of the theme song of the TV comedy (Big Bang Theory). One would thing it might have sunk in by now.

      March 22, 2014 at 10:11 am |
  19. gleeleeglooloo

    This article is so biased. With the same logic, there could be any god, gods or no god!

    March 22, 2014 at 5:28 am |
    • the0g0to0the0t

      One per galaxy would make sense I suppose...

      March 22, 2014 at 9:11 am |
  20. philipnd

    Why does CNN insist on having idiots who don't understand science write articles about science?

    March 22, 2014 at 4:42 am |
    • nepawoods

      Well, it is in the religion blogs. Still, no need to completely abandon logic and intellectual honesty, as the author has.

      March 22, 2014 at 5:06 am |
    • gleeleeglooloo

      Well said.

      March 22, 2014 at 5:28 am |
    • dancmh

      You answered your own question. It's CNN.

      March 22, 2014 at 6:33 am |
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About this blog

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