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April 24th, 2014
10:21 AM ET

Vatican: Pope's phone calls don't change doctrine

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

(CNN) - It was just a phone call.

That's the message the Vatican sent to reporters on Thursday, a day after news broke about a private conversation between the pontiff and a woman in Argentina.

Pope Francis, who is from Argentina, reportedly called Jacqueline Sabetta Lisbona and told her it was OK to receive Communion, despite her civil marriage to a divorced man. 

"She spoke with the Pope, and he said she was absolved of all sins and she could go and get the Holy Communion because she was not doing anything wrong," the woman's husband, Julio Sabetta, told Channel 3 Rosario, a CNN affiliate in Argentina.

Does that mean the Pope was overturning centuries of church doctrine?

Short answer: No.

"Several telephone calls have taken place in the context of Pope Francis’ personal pastoral relationships," Vatican spokesman the Rev. Federico Lombardi said in a statement.

True, it's far from the first time Francis has cold-called Catholics, who are often shocked to hear "Father Bergoglio" on the line. (Before he was elected pope last year, Francis was Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, archbishop of Buenos Aires.)

But these conversations are private, said Lombardi, and should not be construed as changing church doctrine, who added that "consequences relating to the teaching of the Church are not to be inferred from these occurrences."

As the Rev. Thomas Rosica, a consultant to the Vatican press office, told CNN on Wednesday "The magisterium of the church is not defined by personal phone calls."

There has been wide speculation, though, that the Pope has essentially laid out his position on divorce and Communion, months before a synod of bishops from around the world is scheduled to debate the issue.

While it is difficult to change canon law (after all, the church draws its teachings on marriage from Jesus himself), Catholic leaders have said they could at least streamline the annulment process, which sometimes drags on for years.

Any change would potentially affect millions of divorced and remarried Catholics around the world, many of whom have been pining for the church to allow them to receive Communion again.

As Julio Sabetta said on Wednesday, "I'm very happy, because I’m not the only one divorced."

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Catholic Church • Pope Francis

soundoff (349 Responses)
  1. Concert in an Egg

    Christians (and other cults) you can argue but you can’t win. You have nothing factual to base your opinions on. The bible is fiction and your religions are archaic. The bible is very interesting from a historical point of view, not a literal one. Believe in god if you wish, but even just a little brain power will begin to steer you clear of the bible and other religious antiques.

    April 24, 2014 at 3:11 pm |
    • noahsdadtopher

      Ah, the self-agrandizing of the unbeliever. Atheists are the only smart people in the world.

      April 24, 2014 at 3:17 pm |
      • SeaVik

        On the subject of religion, that's correct. However, that doesn't mean that people who are delusional when it comes to religion can't be intelligent in other respects.

        April 24, 2014 at 3:20 pm |
      • G to the T

        I agree that intelligence usually has no bearing on the beliefs one holds. Intelligent people can believe in illogical things because they establish beliefs for emotional reasons and then rationalize that belief (so does everyone else, they just may not be as good at rationalizing).

        April 24, 2014 at 3:21 pm |
        • gulliblenomore

          G to the T....I'm not sure I can agree with that. I'm not sure how a person that believes in something with absolutely no proof whatsoever can be deemed intelligent. They may know quite a bit in other aspects of life, but intelligent? I really don't think so.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:31 pm |
        • G to the T

          I think it's possible because the "belief" and "intelligence" are only indirectly related. Intelligence isn't automatic immunity to gullibility nor is it a gaurantee against cognitive bias.

          All of this is why the scientific method is so impactful on our development. It is one of the first systems developed by humans that takes into account our bias and tries to mitigate it as much as possible.

          Just as no man sees himself as a villian, no man sees himself as a fool. We all believe our beliefs are based on sound logic and reason, and they may be. That is why we must always question our premises and most of the time, the scientific method (however clumsy it may be in some applications) is still the best instrument we have to confirm what is actualy "real".

          April 24, 2014 at 4:10 pm |
      • Concert in an Egg

        The only smart people? I wouldn't over-emphasize that. We do have common sense though, relative to religion and the bible. You are completely lacking in common sense. It is obvious when your mind is free.

        April 24, 2014 at 3:24 pm |
      • gulliblenomore

        Topher....you are absolutely correct about that. On the subject of religion, atheists are much more intelligent about the subject because we are objective about it. The very nature of your religion dictates that you use no logic to perform it. You ask no questions and you use a 2000 year old book to refute scientific discoveries. That is insane.

        April 24, 2014 at 3:26 pm |
      • samsstones

        Topher compared to you who rejects most of the knowledge that the rest of the world accepts as true doesn't necessarily mean you are stupid, just totally deluded.

        April 24, 2014 at 3:57 pm |
  2. observer

    Theo Phileo,,

    Stumped?

    April 24, 2014 at 3:08 pm |
    • Theo Phileo

      Over what? There's so many conversations going on I may have missed the question...

      April 24, 2014 at 3:11 pm |
      • Concert in an Egg

        Since free will is not a possibility according to the bible, why does god allow violent marriages and suffering children? Is this a good thing to him?

        April 24, 2014 at 3:16 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          "Since free will is not a possibility according to the bible, why does god allow violent marriages and suffering children? Is this a good thing to him?"
          -------------------–
          I think A.W. Pink addressed this well...

          "The Doctrine of Reprobation does not mean that God proposed to take innocent creatures, make them wicked, and then damn them. Scripture says “Gad made man upright, but they have sought out many devices” (Ecclesiastes 7:29). God has not created sinful creatures in order to destroy them, for God is not to be charged with the sin of His creatures, rather, the responsibility and the criminality is man’s. God’s decree of reprobation contemplated Adam’s race as fallen, sinful, corrupt, guilty. From it, God proposed to save a few as the monuments of His sovereign grace, the others He determined to destroy as the exemplification of His justice and severity. In determining to destroy these others, God did them no wrong, they had already fallen in Adam, their legal representative. They are therefore born with a sinful nature, and in their sins, He leaves them. Nor can they complain, this is as they wish as they have no desire for holiness – “they love darkness rather than light because their deeds are evil.” Where then is there any injustice if God “gives them up to their own heart’s lusts?” (Psalms 81:12)

          “God is the creator of the wicked – not their wickedness. He is the author of their being, but not the infuser of their sin. God does not compel the wicked to sin, but rather “leaves them alone” (Matthew 15:14). He needs only to slacken the reigns of providential restraint and withhold the influence of saving grace, and apostate man will only too soon, and will surely of his own accord fall by his iniquities. Thus the decree of reprobation neither interferes with the bent of man’s own fallen nature, nor serves to render him the less inexcusable.”
          A.W. Pink – The Sovereignty of God

          April 24, 2014 at 3:27 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          “God is the creator of the wicked – not their wickedness. He is the author of their being, but not the infuser of their sin."

          Wait....wha?

          April 24, 2014 at 3:34 pm |
        • believerfred

          Theo Phileo
          Thanks, always good to be reminded of the wonderful writing of A.W. Pink........Calvinism notwithstanding.

          April 24, 2014 at 4:11 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Stumped: The state of an amputee praying to God for a new limb.

      April 24, 2014 at 3:16 pm |
      • believerfred

        Doc
        I hope you have not fallen on Bob's sacrificial knife. Perhaps you should watch Forest Gump again and note how God provided for Capt'n Dan
        It is man who is deceived by physical desires to the point where following God becomes secondary to desire. If one were a world class runner who lost his legs would prayer be thanks for the years of wonder or why take my legs. Would prayer be for average legs, comparable legs or some other physical desire. The glory of God can be apparent in the loss or existence of legs resulting in faith but certainly not in sarcasm.

        April 24, 2014 at 4:10 pm |
  3. snowr14

    Well, the guy tries to do something that is morally correct, and the church has to intervene to say "that is not what the religion actually says"

    Makes you wonder, if things that are so clear morally are contradicted by the religion, how correct are the other parts of the religion. and what is the point of following an obviously self contradicting religion.

    April 24, 2014 at 3:05 pm |
  4. Concert in an Egg

    This dialogue regarding divorce relative to the bible has shown me only hypocrisy in believers.

    April 24, 2014 at 2:54 pm |
    • noahsdadtopher

      Why is that?

      April 24, 2014 at 2:56 pm |
      • yeahright14

        maybe becuse every time I prove you wrong, you run away like a coward and refuse to answer my questions?

        April 24, 2014 at 2:58 pm |
        • samsstones

          Topher has always been a liar and a coward, just ask him.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:09 pm |
      • Concert in an Egg

        Simply put, you cherry pick the bible to fit your argument. You are not a believer.

        April 24, 2014 at 3:01 pm |
        • Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

          I thought that was the definition of a believer...

          April 24, 2014 at 3:04 pm |
        • Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

          LET's Religiosity Law #6 – If a bible verse furthers the cause, it is to be taken literally. If a bible verse is detrimental to the cause, it is either: taken out of context; is allegorical; refers to another verse somewhere else; is an ancient cultural anomaly; is a translation or copyist's error; means something other than what it actually says; Is a mystery of god or not discernible by humans; or is just plain magic.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:04 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          Topher doesn't cherry pick anything. He understands, through the reading of God's word, that God's dealings with men through the ages has been governed through covenants...

          Adamic Covenant
          Noahic Covenant
          Abrahamic Covenant
          Israel Covenant
          Mosaic Covenant
          Davidic Covenant
          New Covenant

          Each of these Covenants are reflective of God's nature and the progressive nature of the revelation of scripture.

          He understands that through the covenants, we know that we know longer adhear to those certain laws which either were written to govern the people of Israel, or those laws which were to function as a sign of what will be in future covenants, like the sacrificial system.

          It's not cherry picking, it's proper hermeneutics.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:09 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          Thank you, sir.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:12 pm |
        • snowr14

          So Theo, Absolute truth about god and absolute truth about his teaching change with time? Wow, who would have thunk!

          April 24, 2014 at 3:13 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          Did god just take a vacation? Why does he not communicate with us now, in our time? In our languages?

          April 24, 2014 at 3:14 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          Concert in an Egg

          "Did god just take a vacation? Why does he not communicate with us now, in our time? In our languages?"

          He doesn't need to. He's already revealed everything we need to know. In your language.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:16 pm |
        • Madtown

          the reading of God's word
          ----
          When reading the bible, we are reading the word of men, and their opinions on what they believe God is like, and how he operates.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:16 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          "So Theo, Absolute truth about god and absolute truth about his teaching change with time? Wow, who would have thunk!"
          -----------------–
          That's not even remotely close to what I said. God's nature doesn't change, but because revelation was given in progressive steps, God's dealings with men was governed by covenants that were reflective of the revelation yet to be revealed.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:18 pm |
        • yeahright14

          "Simply put, you cherry pick the bible to fit your argument. You are not a believer."

          YOu are right on one thing, im not a beleiver. BUt heres the thing, you dont posses any special powers that I do not. The bible does not make any more sense when you read it than when I do. The only difference is you purposely remain ignorant. And you gotta love it when people use what the bible actually says to make a point, then get accused of being a cherry picker! LOL

          April 24, 2014 at 3:19 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          Topher, you are great at making excuses. You did not answer my question. I am not a 2000 year old uneducated desert dweller, sorry.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:19 pm |
        • yeahright14

          "Topher doesn't cherry pick anything"

          Thats funny, because its clearly evident that you posted the bibles rules on getting a divorce, then topher said that any abused woman should leave, which clearly violates the bibles instructions. Which means he;s a cherry picker. Which means you just lied about him not cherry picking. Would love to hear you try and weasel your way out of that one!

          April 24, 2014 at 3:21 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          @Theo Phileo,
          Just curious, but why was it necesary to reveal scripture "progressively"?

          Also, is not progressive revelation misleading?

          April 24, 2014 at 3:21 pm |
        • Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

          My father is 79 and he knows how to email and use Facebook... but your God can't figure those things out? He can't hijack the next episode of Game of Thrones and tell us how great he is and how we should all be kissing his ass? Sounds like a weak and puny god to me...

          April 24, 2014 at 3:22 pm |
        • Madtown

          God's dealings with men was governed by covenants
          -----
          Covenants, right. Sounds like the justification of humans: "God loves us more than that other group, we have a covenant." So, God would craft a covenant with 1 group of the humans he created, allowing them to attack, kill, and take the lands of another group of humans he also created? That makes sense.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:30 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          "Just curious, but why was it necesary to reveal scripture "progressively"?"
          ---------------–
          I don't know, the Bible doesn't say. I could venture a guess though. Since Adam walked with God, he could verbally ask God whatever questions that he wanted to about His nature. Over time as men became more and more sinful, and as God began to reveal Himself only to certain of His prophets to speak for Him, more and more needed to be written down as men drifted further and further from God. But that's my guess. Ultimately, revelation was progressive simply because God ordained it to be so.

          "Also, is not progressive revelation misleading?"
          ---------------------
          I don't think so. Where we didn't have written revelation, we did have God's covenants.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:35 pm |
        • samsstones

          Topher complementing a fellow fundie nutter is what we expect of you.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:36 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          Concert in an Egg

          "Topher, you are great at making excuses. You did not answer my question. I am not a 2000 year old uneducated desert dweller, sorry."

          Did you ask me a question? I have no idea what you are talking about. Sorry.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:42 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          I believe I asked you why we can't get some fresh takes from the big fella.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:47 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          Concert in an Egg

          "I believe I asked you why we can't get some fresh takes from the big fella."

          No fresh takes needed. I did answer your question. There's a Bible available — in English — in just about every book store in the country. And if that's not good enough for you, you can order one online or even have it read to you on some websites.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:59 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          If you expect someone with common sense to believe the nonsense of the bible, we are going to need a little more than that to work with friend.

          April 24, 2014 at 4:03 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          Concert in an Egg

          So now I don't have common sense?

          April 24, 2014 at 4:09 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          Relative to religion and the bible, correct.

          April 24, 2014 at 4:22 pm |
        • MidwestKen

          @Theo Phileo,
          But isn't a partial revelation as bad as a false revelation, I.e. a lie of omission?

          April 24, 2014 at 4:12 pm |
        • Madtown

          you can order one online or even have it read to you on some websites.
          ----–
          Still not good enough for the humans that God created to inhabit a more primitive society, without these modern conveniences. We're back to either God isn't powerful enough to distribute this message, or he never intended to distribute the message because it's not his message, it's the message of human beings.

          April 24, 2014 at 4:18 pm |
  5. Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

    "What a great day for Canadians everywhere! The Winnipeg drummers, playing the "March of 1000 Farts"...as is traditional for the Canadian Royal Family."

    "People in attendance, now gently tossing Cap'n Crunch as the prince passes by...as of course is tradition."

    "Ah, here she comes! Yes, there she is! The aboot-to-be princess of Canada. Isn't she ravishing? So pure of heart, so strong in body, so hot in the face....She is indeed the living symbol of our greatly country. My God, she's beautiful."

    April 24, 2014 at 2:42 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      The most Canadian phrase ever:
      "Sorry, but can you please pass me a serviette? I got poutine on the Chesterfield, eh."

      April 24, 2014 at 2:47 pm |
      • Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

        Poutine – When you just don't want to drag out killing yourself with cholesterol... LOL

        April 24, 2014 at 3:02 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          You can give yourself a coronary in an afternoon in my city.
          Get the Triple Pork Poutine from Smoke's Poutinery:
          Fries, gravy, cheese curds, Chipotle Pulled Pork, Double-Smoked Baconand Italian Sausage

          If you can still move, drag your fat butt over to Dangerous Dan's and grab a "Collosal Colon Clogger Combo":
          24oz burger served with a quarter pound of cheese, a quarter pound of bacon, and 2 fried eggs.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:09 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          *NOTE: These dishes may not be Kosher.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:13 pm |
        • Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

          "Collosal Colon Clogger Combo" That meal sounds like a manslaughter charge just waiting to happen

          April 24, 2014 at 3:18 pm |
  6. Concert in an Egg

    @Theo

    Have you ever witnessed your mother beaten by a man (her husband)?

    April 24, 2014 at 2:12 pm |
    • Concert in an Egg

      Theo, have you ever cleaned blood of the walls of your home to a friend could visit?

      April 24, 2014 at 2:15 pm |
      • Concert in an Egg

        Theo, would you have your mother endure this living hell rather than divorce her psychopath husband?

        April 24, 2014 at 2:16 pm |
        • yeahright14

          "Dont worry, jesus is working on that, all evil will be gone soon, just give it another 2000 years – Theo

          April 24, 2014 at 2:20 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          That is good news indeed.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:22 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          If someone is being physically harmed, they should get themselves away from the situation immediately.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:27 pm |
        • samsstones

          How about a young child being mentally damaged by its parents or the members of a cult? Should that child not be protected by society?

          April 24, 2014 at 3:15 pm |
      • Doc Vestibule

        Didn't Christ say to turn the other cheek?
        Maye what He meant was to show your abuser your backside cheeks as you run for the door...

        April 24, 2014 at 2:31 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          That SOB used to hit me in the head, whip me with a belt and even TRIP me on purpose. Total psycho. In the end, I had to run his drunk ass off once and for all. It only took a few years to work of the courage. But, he did go to church every Sunday so....

          April 24, 2014 at 2:40 pm |
      • yeahright14

        THats not what the bible says Topher. I thought you followed the bible. Or only just when its convenient?

        April 24, 2014 at 2:41 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          I doubt very much you know what the Bible says.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:43 pm |
        • Madtown

          what the Bible says
          ---
          That statement makes it sound like there's only 1 version.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:48 pm |
        • yeahright14

          Marriage is a permanent union. The bond of marriage is broken by death (Romans 7:2), and divorce is ONLY permitted under 2 conditions:

          1) Se.xual Immorality (Matthew 19:7-9)
          2) If an unbelieving spouse abandons a believer (1 Corinthians 7:15)

          Malachi 2:16 – “For I hate divorce,” says the Lord, the God of Israel…

          So, do you follow the bible, or not? Its clear as day you arent following the bible. Why not?

          And how about you stop being a coward and actually answer me.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:48 pm |
        • samsstones

          It is precisely why we know what the bible says that we believe it should be used as ass wipe or fuel to start a fire.

          April 24, 2014 at 4:55 pm |
    • Concert in an Egg

      Theo, would you have advised my mother to stay married to the wife-beater that sexually molested my sister and physically abused me as a child?

      April 24, 2014 at 2:24 pm |
      • Theo Phileo

        Of course not.

        April 24, 2014 at 2:28 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          Would you advise divorce?

          April 24, 2014 at 2:33 pm |
        • The Ministry Of Bad Opinion says...

          You just got done saying this: They need help, and love, not separation.
          Isn't loooooooooove the answer?
          Freaking psycho.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:35 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          First, no one is required to be in a situation where they must constantly endure abuses, either physically or mentally. But this doesn't necessarily mean divorce.

          The Bible gives 2 grounds for divorce, and I won't presume upon the Bible further than that since for any other reason, the Bible remains silent.

          What we can investigate though is if that unbelieving spouse abuses the other, and would continue to do so in an unrepentant manner regardless of any kind of intervention, does that att.itude reveal an intention to do away with their spouse through physical means rather than legal? If that is indeed true, then that does qualify as a Biblical condition. But I am only speculating here.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:41 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          "You just got done saying this: They need help, and love, not separation."
          ------------
          That is because at this point he mentioned se.xual immorality.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:42 pm |
        • gulliblenomore

          So...the bible is crystal clear on the conditions for divorce, even though it was quite prevalent in Jesus' time. And strangely, not a word on the evil of owning slaves. I find that rather disconcerting.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:08 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          " the evil of owning slaves"
          ---------------
          That's because in Jesus' time, much of the slavery wasn't anything like the slavery here in America... Slaves were more akin to domestic servants though than oppressed field workers. Slaves could be the captives of war (Numbers 31:25-47), subjects of debt to be worked off (2 Kings 4:1), born into slavery (Genesis 17:12-13), or could be entered into voluntarily (Exodus 21:5-6). In the Ancient Near East, some slaves were able to own other slaves and even conduct business and in Exodus 21:2 a slave was required to be set free after six years of service.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:15 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @Theo
          Fellow Hebrews were indentured servants to be treated fairly and set free after 6 years.
          Foreigners, pagans, heathens and other assorted heretics were chattel for life.

          "However, you may purchase male or female slaves from among the foreigners who live among you. You may also purchase the children of such resident foreigners, including those who have been born in your land. You may treat them as your property, passing them on to your children as a permanent inheritance. You may treat your slaves like this, but the people of Israel, your relatives, must never be treated this way."
          (Leviticus 25:44-46 NLT)

          Female slaves, even if they were Hebrews, were much worse off.
          "When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she will not be freed at the end of six years as the men are. If she does not please the man who bought her, he may allow her to be bought back again."
          -(Exodus 21:7 NLT)

          "If his (a slave's) master gave him a wife while he was a slave, and they had sons or daughters, then the man will be free in the seventh year, but his wife and children will still belong to his master."
          (Exodus 21:2 NLT)

          April 24, 2014 at 3:22 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          "If she does not please the man who bought her, he may allow her to be bought back again.""
          -----------
          And in a culture that tended to wrongly view women as little better than a means to birth other men, allowing them to be bought back was a means of keeping a woman off the streets either homeless, or making a living by WHAT she is... This was actually a means of preserving the welfare of women.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:40 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          And what of Christian culture and its atti/tudes towards women:
          Thomas Aquinas said:
          "But the natural reason is that she is more carnal than a man, as is clear from her many carnal abominations. And it should be noted that there was a defect in the formation of the first woman, since she was formed from a bent rib, that is, rib of the breast, which is bent as it were in a contrary direction to a man. And since through this defect she is an imperfect animal, she always deceives."

          The Protestant Reformation didn't do much to improve the lot of Christian women.
          "If they become tired or even die, it does not matter. Let them die in childbirth – that is why they are there" .
          – Martin Luther

          April 24, 2014 at 3:52 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          Doc,
          These are the words of Aquinas and Luther – they were men who were writing without the benefit of inspiration. As such, we take the good, and discard the bad, as with any uninspired writer.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:58 pm |
        • observer

          Theo Phileo,

          The Bible not only supports slavery, it supports brutality against them in many cases WITHOUT PUNISHMENT.

          The Bible says that men can sell their 6-year-old daughters to strangers for their use.

          It's PATHETIC that ANYONE would try to make excuses for such BARBARIC actions.

          April 24, 2014 at 4:17 pm |
        • Madtown

          These are the words of Aquinas and Luther – they were men who were writing without the benefit of inspiration
          -------
          And, you know this how?

          April 24, 2014 at 5:03 pm |
      • The Ministry Of Bad Opinion says...

        Yea, of course Theo would. Because Theo lacks the ability to think cognitively outside of the Bible. Theo will now c/p some verse how the your mother should be subservient to the will of her husband. And if you were disobedient, dash your head against the stones. And as for your poor sister, of course incest is sanctioned by that sane bloody Bible.

        What the hey. Common sense is out. Theoanity is IT.

        April 24, 2014 at 2:32 pm |
  7. Løki

    Götterdämmerung / Ragnarok ist nah! Es wird von Fimbulvetr, der Winter Winter vorangestellt werden. Drei solcher Winter werden einander ohne Sommer dazwischen folgen. Konflikte und Fehden ausbrechen wird, auch zwischen Familien und alle Moral verschwindet. Dies ist der Beginn des Endes.

    April 24, 2014 at 2:01 pm |
    • Concert in an Egg

      When will the cold frosty blast of continuous winter act as the preamble to the utter devastation of all things?

      April 24, 2014 at 2:08 pm |
      • Løki

        Wie alle guten Religionen ... wenn alle Vorzeichen ausrichten ... bald, sehr bald.

        April 24, 2014 at 2:41 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          Excellent.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:47 pm |
        • Sea Otter (Leader Allied Atheist Alliance)

          Eggcellent

          April 24, 2014 at 2:53 pm |
  8. Løki

    Do not tempt Odin's wrath by mocking him with your impotent god. The Aesir are the only gods worthy of your fear...

    April 24, 2014 at 2:00 pm |
  9. Concert in an Egg

    God is an evil entity bent on torture and self-adoration. Christians will tell you another, false tale of a loving god. Other religions will too. These stories describe evil and immorality. Believers, why do you worship the darkness?

    April 24, 2014 at 1:38 pm |
    • Theo Phileo

      Isaiah 5:20-21 – Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who subst.itute darkness for light and light for darkness; who subst.itute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes and clever in their own sight!

      April 24, 2014 at 1:41 pm |
      • yeahright14

        His own book tells him not to fall for his own book, and he's trying to use it as proof!

        Sorry, but god murdered almost everyone in a flood. Sent bears to maul kids. Tortured his own child instead of just forgiving people. Thats evil. No matter what kind of spin you try to put on it. Funny how the bible would say not to follow evil though. LOL

        April 24, 2014 at 1:48 pm |
        • igaftr

          yeahright
          It makes more sense if you read it as if Satan insoired it, rather than god. Satan's gretaest trick was inspirng the bible, and giving god the credit. God would not have gotten so much wrong.

          April 24, 2014 at 1:52 pm |
        • Russ

          @ yeahright14:

          “If God were not angry at injustice and deception and did not make a final end to violence—that God would not be worthy of worship…. The only means of prohibiting all recourse to violence by ourselves is to insist that violence is legitimate only if it comes from God… My thesis that the practice of non-violence requires a belief in divine vengeance will be unpopular with many… in the West…. [But] it takes the quiet of a suburban home for the birth of the thesis that human non-violence [results from the belief in] God’s refusal to judge. In a sun-scorched land, soaked in the blood of the innocent, it will invariably die… [with] other pleasant captivities of the liberal mind.”

          –Miroslav Volf, Exclusion and Embrace (pp.303-4)

          April 24, 2014 at 1:54 pm |
        • yeahright14

          Russ,

          A god who allows evil to even exist isnt worth worshiping. Kind of funny how he doesnt like evil, he also has the power to end evil, and chooses not to. Face it, your religion makes no sense.

          God can create the entire universe, but cant do something I can do. Forgive people without murdering my children. Face it, your god is an idiot. Good thing he isnt real.

          April 24, 2014 at 1:57 pm |
        • igaftr

          Russ.
          He was quite wrong in his thesis. I am non-violent and I have no gods. Buddha taught non-viloence and did not care if there were gods or not.

          You do not need any gods to be kind and thoughful. Violence is used by people who have run out of other ideas, which is something that never happens to me.
          To me , That is also evidence that the abrahamic god does not exist, since that god used violence quite frequently...as if he had no better idea. The stories clearly come from men, stories of violence and other things men fear are quite common as bases for stories.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:01 pm |
        • Russ

          @ yeahright: it is your prerogative to reject Christianity, but it would be good if you rejected the genuine item.

          the Bible clearly states that God will put a permanent end to evil, despite what you've stated above.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:02 pm |
        • yeahright14

          "@ yeahright: it is your prerogative to reject Christianity, but it would be good if you rejected the genuine item."

          Exactly, just as you reject the other 3500 religions out there. And you want me to reject the genuine item? LOL. Sure, since there are about 500 different sects of christianity, how about you fill me in which one is correct.

          "the Bible clearly states that God will put a permanent end to evil, despite what you've stated above."

          LOL. So he's going to eventually put an end to all evil, just not right now? What exactly is he waiting for? Christianity: 2000 years of any day now!

          April 24, 2014 at 2:12 pm |
        • Russ

          @ igaftr:
          you appear to have missed his point.

          1) Volf said: "it takes the quiet of a suburban home for the birth of the thesis that human non-violence [results from the belief in] God’s refusal to judge."

          a) he was responding to those who argue "God doesn't judge" – or other "captivities of the liberal mind," as he put it. it was not a shot at Buddhist atheists.

          b) however, you said: "Violence is used by people who have run out of other ideas, which is something that never happens to me."

          this is an exceedingly shallow approach (if not an incredibly arrogant claim). Volf is speaking as a survivor of the conflict in Croatia, as a professor at Yale (who deals with bright, overachieving suburbanites on a regular basis). he lived through the violence. while it's possible, i am doubtful you have suffered through similar extremes. along those lines, to quote another philosopher, Mike Tyson famously said: "everybody's got a plan until they get punched in the mouth."

          c) Volf is pointing out that those who are watching the "suffering of the innocent" firsthand and are unable to stop it through non-violent means begin to think otherwise. as Jesus said, "love your neighbor as yourself" – and there comes a point at which loving another requires interceding on their behalf.

          to be most pointed, even if one takes MLK's "aggressive non-violence" (most like what a Buddhist might assert), let's not pretend as if that is ultimately avoiding violence. *by design*, either i) it results in being the recipient of violence or ii) it is an attempt to do psychological violence to your enemy in order to stop physical violence. either way: violence is the outcome. certainly, avoiding physical violence is preferable, but do you really think you've avoided violence by making it *more* personal & inward?

          2) consider the stark contrast in what we are claiming about the nature of humanity & existence:

          Ravi Zacharias said: "Buddhism is a well-thought through belief that is bereft of God. More accurately, it is a philosophy of how one can be good without God, pulling oneself up by one's own moral bootstraps" (Lotus and the Cross: Jesus Talks With Buddha). The Buddha said, "Be a light to yourselves," but Jesus said, "I am the light of the world" (John 9:5).

          in Buddhism, you 'save' yourself through being good.
          in Christianity, Jesus saves you because you cannot save yourself.

          Buddhism gives you advice on how to be a good person.
          Christianity gives you news that One has done what you never could.

          you clearly think you are better than others ("...something that never happens to me..."). that matches your system of belief. you are your own savior where you believe others have failed to be one.

          note well, my Christianity tells me that he had to die for me. i'm not better than anyone else. if anything, it's worse than i wanted to admit. and at the same time, it's better than i ever dared hope: he was *willing* to die for me. i do not claim to be better than you – i claim to be evidence that if there is a God who is so good as to save a wretch like me at such cost to himself, there's hope for EVERYONE.

          your system of belief leads you to think 'only the good get it.'
          Christianity gives hope to losers like me – the Good suffered to transform the bad.

          do you see how your anthropology necessarily leads to a superiority complex? ('why can't everybody else be as good as me?' – basically your statement here.) as long as you think you are better than other people – then yes, you will hate Christianity, especially the psychological violence the cross does to you (you are worse than you want to admit; you deserve this). but if & when the day comes when you realize you are really horrible at being your own savior, i hope you'll see that there is One who died to save even a fool like the one you're arguing with now... a Savior who *entered* our suffering and took the worst violence upon himself.

          April 24, 2014 at 4:48 pm |
        • igaftr

          russ
          I was required to use violence enough to know I will not willingly use it again unlessanother forces it to happen.
          As far as YOUR savior...I have no need of one, since all of that belief does not make any sense, and it is YOU who simiply can't see the falseness of the dogma. It is glaringly obvious to many like me, that your dogma was created by men, not gods, and that men created those gods.

          Imagine needing some savior, to save you from a threat he created himself...preposterous. I also am no sinner, It is even joked about with my friends that I am the most christian they know, even though they know I am an atheist. They don't realize how insulting that is to me. I do not think I am better than anyone else, but as far as violence goes, I am more experienced than most, and far more experienced than I want to be.

          An incident happened the other day.
          I was taking a break outside, downtown in a city. I heard a man and woman arguing. The man fired a right jab and hit the woman on the left cheek. Even though at least a dozen christians also witnessed this ( my co-workers, so I know their faith). None of them acted. I intervened. I immediately called the police, then followed the individual until he got on a city bus. I then told the driver I could not allow the individual to leave, that the police were coming, and then stood in front of the bus. While I was there, many people on the bus told me he got off through the back door. I could see through the windsheild he was hiding in the back seat. Once the police arrived, many claimed I used racial epithets, and foul language,( which i do not use) When the police were talking to the perpetrator, I looked around at those accusing me of racial and foul language, and asked loudly How many of you are christians...they all raised their hands, even though they were trying to defend a guy who hits women, and were lying about me ( security cameras showed I was the only one telling the truth). They were all black as was the perpetrator. I am not.

          I was the ONLY ONE doing the right thing, and I was able to stop the attack, get the individuals name on a police report, and maybe she will think twice about staying with this abuser, and maybe he will think twice about hitting women. I did this without a single foul word, and no violence, while being threatened by "christians" the whole time.

          Religion is NOT doing any good for those people, and I certainly have no need of it.
          That sort of thing is what I have come to expect from christians.
          Don't get me started on what I have witnessed of muslims.

          I see NO good coming from religions at all, they are all corrupt.

          April 24, 2014 at 5:08 pm |
        • Madtown

          Great post igaftr, and good on you sir.

          April 24, 2014 at 5:30 pm |
        • Russ

          @ igaftr:
          1) their own Christian faith calls them out on that.
          a) it's not a matter of the doctrine here, it's a failure to live into that doctrine.
          b) your example is anecdotal. it would be the same as if i referenced similar atheist / buddhist failures. there are plenty of examples both ways (positive & negative for Christians & atheists).

          2) you are loudly embracing what i said – whether intentionally or not – that you believe you are your own savior... or at least significantly better than all THOSE people.

          again, Christ died to save AND change *those* sort of people... people like me... people who are moral failures. and while you point at that example as why such people are utter refuse in your estimation, Jesus came & hung out with those "sinners" (as the religious right referred to them). ironically, as your friends have pointed out to you, you seem to have more in common with the moral superiority complex of the Pharisees than many atheists (who celebrate what might be called 'non-judgmentalism' – falling off the other side).

          note well: the people Jesus MOST called out were the religious right, those who thought they were morally superior. it was their *goodness* (not their badness) that was the biggest barrier between them and God. that's what is utterly unique about Christianity – Jesus came for the *bad* people: "I came for the sick, not the righteous." though notably the Bible states we ALL are bad apart from God (Rom.3:10-20), which is why we *all* need a savior.

          a test: imagine you were wearing an invisible recording device for the last 5 years. forget the Golden Rule or any such religious standards, just by your OWN espoused standards... the very things that have come out of your mouth or run through your mind with other people. what would happen if YOU were held accountable simply to your OWN standards? do you really think you'd pass that test? and that's not even to press in someone else's grid...

          as i said before, until you recognize your own need, you will continue to attempt to be your own savior, at least until you see what a horribly insufficient savior you are. it will either make you incredibly arrogant ("i'm glad i'm not like THOSE people") or despairing ("I'm a failure").

          but here's what it won't do: it won't make you humble or actually call you out in your failures. it won't transform you. after all, who could actually speak into your world? you are your own savior, so it's merely self-projection. what is there to change, right? the problem arises when you finally hit the wall, realize you do need to change – but how will you... if you're your own savior? or even more: if you are not a sinner & don't believe in that crap?

          when that point comes, remember: Jesus not only hung out with sinners as horrible as me, he died to save them AND change them. he made his own enemies into his family. there is no other Love like this.

          April 25, 2014 at 4:27 pm |
        • Russ

          @ yeahright:
          1) read the Apostles' Creed (c. AD 180).
          over 2 billion Christians agree on what it claims – a summation of the central tenets of the faith (as taught in the NT).
          note well the ending: "he will come to judge..."

          2) "he who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all, how will he not also – along with him – graciously give us all things?" (Rom.8:32)

          there is no answer given for timing (other than the fact that it is God's prerogative & not ours – and the logical deduction that MANY would not have received grace if time had not been allowed)... but in light of God's *personal* investment in the scenario, it would be ridiculous to assume he's just not that concerned. this is the anti-thesis of Deism.

          SUM: again, if you're going to reject Christianity, i would hope you would at least reject the faith for what it *actually* teaches.

          April 25, 2014 at 4:32 pm |
      • Concert in an Egg

        I hope you were looking in a mirror as you copy and pasted.

        April 24, 2014 at 1:49 pm |
        • The Ministry Of Bad Opinion says...

          Self awareness isn't Theo's strong suit.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:27 pm |
      • Alias

        I call it evi to torture someone for ever.

        April 24, 2014 at 5:00 pm |
  10. Theo Phileo

    "She spoke with the Pope, and he said she was absolved of all sins and she could go and get the Holy Communion because she was not doing anything wrong,"
    ----------------–
    Firstly, if the pope is under the as.sumption that he has authority under heaven to pardon sins, then he is admitting to being an anti-christ, for no man can by any means redeem his brother or give to God a ransom for him (Psalm 49:7). The Bible tells us that Christ ALONE is the mediator between God and man (1 Timothy 2:5), and no man, not even the pope, nor any priest can claim this position.

    Next, he has no authority to tell this person that they "have done nothing wrong." Who is he to say that there is no sin when the Bible says that there is sin.

    Marriage is a permanent union. The bond of marriage is broken by death (Romans 7:2), and divorce is ONLY permitted under 2 conditions:

    1) Se.xual Immorality (Matthew 19:7-9)
    2) If an unbelieving spouse abandons a believer (1 Corinthians 7:15)

    Malachi 2:16 – “For I hate divorce,” says the Lord, the God of Israel…

    Matthew 5:31 – “It was said, ‘Whoever sends his wife away, let him give her a certificate of divorce’; but I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except for the reason of unchast.ity, makes her commit adultery; and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.

    The rabbis had taken liberty with what scripture had actually said. They referred to Deuteronomy 24:1-4 as if it were given merely to regulate paperwork when one sought a divorce. They had wrongly concluded that men could divorce their wives for anything that displeased them, as long as they gave them a “certificate of divorce.” But Moses had actually provided this as a concession to protect the woman who was divorced, not to justify or legalize divorce under all circ.umstances.

    “Makes her commit adultery” – If the divorce was not for se.xual immorality, any remarriage is adultery because God does not acknowledge the divorce.

    April 24, 2014 at 1:10 pm |
    • observer

      Theo Phileo,

      People who have divorced and remarried are adulterers according to Jesus.

      How many of your family and friends fall into this category?

      How many have you told to divorce again and repent?

      April 24, 2014 at 1:14 pm |
      • Theo Phileo

        "People who have divorced and remarried are adulterers according to Jesus."
        ---------------
        Wrong.
        Only people who have divorced for reasons OTHER than se.xual immorality, or if an unbelieving spouse leaves the believer are adulterers.

        "How many of your family and friends fall into this category?"
        -----------------
        Under the Biblically permitted conditions for ending a marriage? 2
        Was sin involved on behalf of my believing family members? No.

        "How many have you told to divorce again and repent?"
        ---------------
        You have said this over and over again. Either you don't read my responses, or you just don't get it. Repentance DOES NOT demand the commission of one sin in order to somehow correct a previous sin. Repentance is "go and sin no more." Yeah, it's necessary in as much as it is possible to undo a sin, unless that to do so would commit another sin. And besides, not all sins can be undone. A theft can be undone once the goods have been returned and some resti.tution is made, but a murder cannot be undone.

        April 24, 2014 at 1:20 pm |
        • gulliblenomore

          Theo...I suppose then you advocate not divorcing a spouse that is beating the crap out of you daily? Nice god you worship there.

          April 24, 2014 at 1:33 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          "not divorcing a spouse that is beating the crap out of you daily?"
          -----------------–
          There are other means to solving that particular problem. When you are short on money, you don't kill your child to save on meal costs. That is the drastic nature of divorce as viewed in God's eyes.

          April 24, 2014 at 1:45 pm |
        • yeahright14

          "There are other means to solving that particular problem"

          Like what? Lets hear it.

          April 24, 2014 at 1:49 pm |
        • gulliblenomore

          Yeahright....50 bucks says he comes back and promotes prayer as the solution.

          April 24, 2014 at 1:54 pm |
        • yeahright14

          No, its evident when theists get proven wrong on here, they just pretend they didnt see it and start posting more crap in other places.

          April 24, 2014 at 1:59 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          An abusive spouse can first be dealt with legally... According to Romans, the role of government is to restrain evil, and protect its citizens from it, and if it means that the abusive spouse needs to cool off in jail for a while, then so be it. Then they need help... Counselling, medical help... Whatever they need.

          Our vows to God commit ourselves to one another "in sickness and in health," and no healthy person would continually abuse the one with whom he has "become one flesh."

          They need help, and love, not separation.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:07 pm |
        • yeahright14

          Tell that to the thousands and thousands of women who continually get beaten despite jail time and counseling. This is why religion is detrimental to society. Idiots like you think an invisible man has all the right answers, and people suffer because of it.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:15 pm |
        • gulliblenomore

          Theo....you are making quite an assumption there. I never vowed anything to your god when I got married. And I assume it is the same for many, many people.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:16 pm |
        • gulliblenomore

          And Theo....just to let you know...men coming back out of jail are not especially nice. They tend to be a bit more rabid then. You have officially crossed over. The suggestion of prayer might have even been better than that!

          April 24, 2014 at 2:19 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          "are other means to solving that particular problem"

          Lets hear your solution Theo since apparently you know best! What an ignorant thing to state! Can I come beat you every day and see if you find an easier solution than walking away???

          April 24, 2014 at 2:24 pm |
        • tallulah131

          You are very naive, Theo. I don't think you understand the dynamics of an abusive relationship. Jail only creates more anger. Counseling only helps those who recognize that they need help. Interference only creates more stress on a situation already at a breaking point.

          My parents had a very violent marriage. Had they not divorced, it could have easily ended with one killing the other. Freed from a bad marriage, they became happier, gentler people who eventually ended up in solid second marriages. I know that their divorce was the best thing that happened to me, personally.

          Any religion that forces people to remain in unsafe, unhappy relationships is not a religion that should be respected.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:27 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          http://www.gotquestions.org/abuse-divorce.html

          April 24, 2014 at 2:32 pm |
        • tallulah131

          Utterly useless garbage, Theo. Try living in the real world.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:34 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          http://www.gotquestions.org/grounds-for-divorce.html

          April 24, 2014 at 2:34 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          Theo: Until you have been in that situation, you have no clue.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:35 pm |
        • observer

          Theo Phileo

          "You have said this over and over again. Either you don't read my responses, or you just don't get it. Repentance DOES NOT demand the commission of one sin in order to somehow correct a previous sin. Repentance is "go and sin no more."

          While people are MARRIED after a divorce, they are LIVING IN ADULTERY. There is only one way to stop that. It is DIVORCE.

          Read a Bible.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:48 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          "Theo: Until you have been in that situation, you have no clue."
          ----------------
          I can name some men and women I know who have gone through some of the same things mentioned here and share the views that I have shared here. They have a clue.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:50 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          "While people are MARRIED after a divorce, they are LIVING IN ADULTERY. There is only one way to stop that. It is DIVORCE."
          -------------------
          So you believe that two wrongs make a right?

          "Read a Bible."
          ------------------–
          I do actually, every day without fail for over 25 years now. How about you?

          April 24, 2014 at 2:53 pm |
        • observer

          Theo Phileo,

          You have friends who are ADULTERERS. You apparently have no problem if they continue to live in ADULTERY.

          Do you ever tell them what sinners they are as adulterers and that they need to repent for it?

          Have you attended weddings that made them officially ADULTERERS?

          April 24, 2014 at 2:57 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          observer,
          You're like a man who tries to put a broom into a refrigerator, and then gets angry when it doesn't fit.

          You're understanding is lacking, and then you seem to get upset when the world doesn't conform to your understanding.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:03 pm |
    • noahsdadtopher

      Good job, Theo.

      April 24, 2014 at 1:16 pm |
      • Concert in an Egg

        Topher, you getting any sleep?

        April 24, 2014 at 1:32 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          Of course he isn't...Noah will be off to college before that happens, Topher is going to be one over-protective Daddy.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:26 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          Got that right.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:29 pm |
    • Concert in an Egg

      With every word you write. Every quote from your holy relic, the bible, the ignorance of religion shines through like a beacon directing intelligent people to avoid the rocks.

      I am 100% in favor of divorce if it brings more happiness to the individuals involved. Common sense.

      April 24, 2014 at 1:32 pm |
      • gulliblenomore

        Egg....since common sense has no relationship with the bible at all, they won't understand what you are talking about.

        April 24, 2014 at 1:34 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          I suppose you are correct. But somewhere, deep beneath their programming, their must still be an intelligent human being begging to get out. We were all children once...

          April 24, 2014 at 1:41 pm |
      • Theo Phileo

        The ultimate happiness of man is irrelevant if it is the standard against which a divorce is based. If that is the case, then you are no different from the Jews in Jesus' day who felt it was legal to divorce your wife for a reason as simple as her burning his meal. How fickle is happiness anyway – it is entirely dependant upon your view of circ.umstances, and the instant you are in a disagreeable circ.umstance, she may feel that a divorce is looming.

        Instead, honor your commitment to one another as if your words actually meant something. A man will honor a business contract, even though he may be on the receiving end of a difficult position to fulfill, but yet he still fulfills his duty.

        We have a duty to our spouses through the contract of marriage, and it cannot and should not be revoked flippantly.

        Instead of divorcing because you are unhappy, be a man and lead your household well – give honor to your duty.

        April 24, 2014 at 1:39 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          Theo, you are speaking to a man who stayed married to his wife after she committed adultery. I know this topic better than most my friend. Patience, compassion, love, hate, suicide, bitterness, pain, suffering.....I have seen it all through my 20 year marriage. If I thought it was best for my kids, I most likely would have divorced. I held my family together and I am still doing it. I know. That being said, my story is not for everyone and ultimately the best decision for the happiness and mental health of the entire family is the most important consideration. You think you know more than I do about divorce? I have seen more than my share of tragedy.

          April 24, 2014 at 1:47 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @Egg
          I know that pain, friend.
          When our child was an infant, I found out my partner was having an affair.
          We're still together, but it was not easy to forgive her and the road to re-establishing trust has been a long one.
          Though we've been together for a decade, we're not married – so I suppose it would've technically been easier for me to walk away...

          April 24, 2014 at 1:55 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          How now Theo? What will you say to this? Have you the actual life-experience to argue a position on divorce?

          April 24, 2014 at 1:58 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          "Theo, you are speaking to a man who stayed married to his wife after she committed adultery. I know this topic better than most my friend. Patience, compassion, love, hate, suicide, bitterness, pain, suffering.....I have seen it all through my 20 year marriage."
          -------------------
          I commend you for a consti.tution that has allowed you to stay when most others would have given up. Quite commendable.

          "...and ultimately the best decision for the happiness and mental health of the entire family is the most important consideration. You think you know more than I do about divorce?"
          -----------------------–
          The Christian recognizes that marriage isn't a secular insti.tution. It was the first insti.tution ever ordained, and it was done so by God (Genesis 2:18-25). It goes WAY beyond being just a means of companionship and appropriation, marriage is to be a demonstration to the world of what a right relationship with God is supposed to look like. In it, the man plays the role of Jesus, while the woman plays the role of the church, so that the world will see their covenant relationship to one another and have an idea of what it is like to be in a right relationship with God.

          There are many rule in scripture regarding marriage, such as mutual submission to one another, and both submitting to God, and so on, all in order that this covenant relationship will be as close as is humanly possible to the greater covenant relationship that we have with God.

          This is why divorce is so detestable. If we view lightly our covenant with one another, how lightly the world will view our covenant with God.

          "I have seen more than my share of tragedy."
          -----------------–
          We all have brother... My family has many ties to the Marines, Coast Guard, and the Navy, and we all can relate to duty that we have to country, fellow soldiers, and so on... Duty is resepcted as something that must be done because we recognize a purpose greater than ourselves, and when it gets difficult, we make it work or we die trying.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:01 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          @Doc

          I feel for you too my friend. There are few things worse than the betrayal of your best friend and lover. I could go on for paragraphs about the trust issue and the difficulties I continue to have but my choice was to try and forgive, like you. It is not possible for everyone and they certainly can't be blamed for walking away from the relationship such as it was. The important thing is the happiness of the children.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:02 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          Theo, I appreciate your post, but the bible nonsense leaves me cold.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:05 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          "Theo, I appreciate your post, but the bible nonsense leaves me cold."
          -----------
          I'm not saying this is your case by any means, but it has been my experience that those who have been left most bitter were the ones who were sold a bill of goods with a line similar to "come to Jesus, He'll make you happy, wealthy, and improve your marriage." The truth is that the promise that we are given is that "in this life you will have trouble." The promise that comes after that is why we become Christians: "but take heart, I have overcome the world."

          April 24, 2014 at 2:19 pm |
        • The Ministry Of Bad Opinion says...

          Theo, you are singularity full of crap.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:38 pm |
    • Madtown

      The Bible tells us that Christ ALONE is the mediator between God and man
      ---–
      Sure, as long as you've heard of Jesus Christ, and know who he is. Otherwise, how are you defining "man"? Is Jesus the mediator for the human beings God created, who will never learn of Christ?

      April 24, 2014 at 2:34 pm |
      • Theo Phileo

        It is not necessary for people to have heard of Jesus in order for them to be guilty of sin.

        April 24, 2014 at 2:46 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Look on the bright side – all those Inuit sinners who never heard of Christ will finally get to be warm.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:49 pm |
        • Madtown

          Is it necessary that they hear of him to be forgiven of their sin?

          April 24, 2014 at 2:55 pm |
  11. yeahright14

    People leaving the church is what changes church doctrine.

    "Whaaaaaaaaaaaaat? No. Being gay is fine now. Who are we to judge?"

    LOL. Supid chrisitans. Pick n choose whatever you want to follow as long as that money keeps coming in. Does anybody really still fall for this nonsense?

    April 24, 2014 at 12:48 pm |
  12. hearthetruthonline2014

    http://www.Hear-The-Truth.com

    http://HearTheTruth.imgur.com

    April 24, 2014 at 12:46 pm |
    • G to the T

      Theft of services is still theft.

      Contribute or leave.

      April 24, 2014 at 2:45 pm |
  13. Jon

    Outsiders are more interested in the church doctrine these days, than the regular church goers.

    The church must address the problem of "divorce" in society that is absolutely ruining family life.

    April 24, 2014 at 12:42 pm |
    • yeahright14

      Its ruining your definition of family life. Which seems to be 2 unhappy parents sticking it out together and brining misery to the children. Go play in traffic moron.

      April 24, 2014 at 12:50 pm |
      • noahsdadtopher

        You're right. Divorce is MUCH better.

        April 24, 2014 at 1:06 pm |
        • Concert in an Egg

          Topher, has your wife ever cheated on you?

          April 24, 2014 at 1:07 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          Nope.

          April 24, 2014 at 1:09 pm |
        • yeahright14

          Divorce is much better in some situations. No need to stay married because some idiot bible thumper thinks an invisible man in the sky said not to.

          April 24, 2014 at 1:11 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          I'd say divorce is better in extremely rare cases. It's way to easy and convenient in this country.

          April 24, 2014 at 1:14 pm |
        • observer

          noahsdadtopher,

          You apparently are claiming that having two parents constantly fighting is better for kids than have them divorced and possibly happily remarried. Sounds really bright.

          April 24, 2014 at 1:17 pm |
        • yeahright14

          Do you know how many cases are worthy of divorce according to your standards in this country? Or are you just making stuff up again?

          How should we change the divorce laws? Should some virgin in a white robe decide when your marriage should end?

          Why would you want 2 people who want to get divorced stay together? What sense does that make? Oh, right, you're christian, suffering is good. LOL

          April 24, 2014 at 1:18 pm |
        • gulliblenomore

          Theo...I thought you were smarter than that, but I guess not. Abuse, infidelity, financial ruin, are just a few of the really great reasons to divorce. Even lesser issues like incompatibility and falling out of love are great reasons. People change and people getting married too early make mistakes. There is no reason to be martyrs in this day and age!

          April 24, 2014 at 1:28 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          observer

          "You apparently are claiming that having two parents constantly fighting is better for kids than have them divorced and possibly happily remarried. Sounds really bright."

          No. I'm claiming that parents should stay together, grow up, work on whatever problem they are having and thus be good examples (read parenting) to their children.

          April 24, 2014 at 1:55 pm |
        • yeahright14

          Topher, I cant help but notice you avoided my questions.

          April 24, 2014 at 2:00 pm |
        • tallulah131

          No one should be forced to stay in a bad marriage. It is cruel and unnecessary. People who are incompatible should not be forced into a lifetime of suffering simply because they made a bad choice at one point in their life. Any religion that insists on this nonsense is not a religion that deserves respect.

          April 24, 2014 at 3:57 pm |
  14. thefinisher1

    Stating everyone is wrong and atheism is the only one correct is illogical and won't change anything. Grow up atheists. It's time to be adults.

    April 24, 2014 at 12:26 pm |
    • In Santa We Trust

      So provide some evidence of a god and that that god created the universe.

      April 24, 2014 at 12:28 pm |
      • thefinisher1

        Present some evidence you're right. Can't? Thought so. You expect people to stop believing when you challenge them or state how God is in our minds. Atheism is in your mind as well, kiddo. Are you 100% correct? Willing to bet you are? On faith perhaps? Do you believe you stand no chance of being wrong? Evidence to support your "non-belief" and how it's correct? No? Shut it, kid.

        April 24, 2014 at 12:35 pm |
        • SeaVik

          Finisher, I hesitate to engage in a conversation with you, because you typically just spew insane, unsupported bs. But what the heck.

          First, let me remind you – atheists have no burden of proof anymore than you have to prove the Tooth Fairy doesn’t exist. We are simply saying that your ridiculously far-fetched claim of a fairy who runs the universe when you have absolutely zero evidence to support his existence is obviously wrong. We are 100% correct that your beliefs are illogical and far-fetched. There is an infinitesimal chance you’re right, but you’d have to be delusional to bet on those odds given zero evidence.

          Get it? Let me guess, you’ll revert to your insane illogical bs.

          April 24, 2014 at 12:40 pm |
        • Alias

          Once you iliminate every other possible answer, one one you are left with must be the right answer.
          Your bible is flawed, your religion lacks the morals it professes, and therte is no proof your god exists.
          Atheism > Theism.

          April 24, 2014 at 12:43 pm |
        • thefinisher1

          Atheism is the most flawed system belief system on earth. Grow some logic balls and admit defeat! 😄

          April 24, 2014 at 12:51 pm |
        • gulliblenomore

          Why does anybody bother to respond to this clueless idiot? Just run the other way when you see posts from finisher, as he has nothing either valid or interesting to say.

          April 24, 2014 at 12:52 pm |
        • yeahright14

          LOL. This idiot has no idea what atheism is. Atheism is the lack of beleif in a god moron, it isnt the beleif that someone isnt 100% positive that no gods exist. That would be just as illogical as your stance.

          Funny how you think you HAVE to beleive in one of these silly religions. Hope you guessed the correct one, or it looks like we'll both be burning for eternity together!

          April 24, 2014 at 12:53 pm |
        • yeahright14

          That should read "is 100%" not "isnt". Dont want to confuse you any more than you are

          April 24, 2014 at 12:54 pm |
        • SeaVik

          "Atheism is the most flawed system belief system on earth. Grow some logic balls and admit defeat!"

          As expected, I blow your position out of the water and all you can come back with is childish whining. Another swing and a miss for the Finisher!

          April 24, 2014 at 12:56 pm |
        • TruthPrevails1

          CNN has banned others, I'm surprised they haven't banned this one yet.

          April 24, 2014 at 1:35 pm |
  15. timetravelerfrom2121

    " They're just phone calls, people."

    It's just an old book with words, Daniel Burke. The bible doesn't mean a d*mn thing.

    April 24, 2014 at 12:07 pm |
  16. Lee

    However . . . when the head of the Catholic Church disagrees with centuries of Catholic Church doctrine, that is news–no matter how valiant the efforts of the Vatican spin doctors.

    April 24, 2014 at 12:05 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      He's a Jesuit – what do you expect?

      April 24, 2014 at 2:29 pm |
  17. Concert in an Egg

    …”cannot be confirmed as reliable, and is a source of misunderstanding and confusion…”

    ~~~~~~~~~~

    What did I misunderstand? I don’t feel confused.....well I guess he IS the pope.

    April 24, 2014 at 11:22 am |
  18. mk

    "But these calls are private, said Lombardi, and should not be construed as changing church doctrine."

    Why does it matter if it is private or public? Doesn't god see all?

    The RCC, evading the real issues, as usual.

    April 24, 2014 at 10:48 am |
  19. fintronics

    The pope, just another cult leader spewing mythology...

    April 24, 2014 at 10:33 am |
  20. Dyslexic doG

    just goes to show, if you know the right people, you don't really have to listen to what god says. that's only for the other people.

    what a sham.

    April 24, 2014 at 10:25 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.