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July 8th, 2014
01:01 PM ET

Eye for an eye: The Bible's role in revenge attacks

Opinion by Joel Baden, special to CNN

(CNN) - This past Sunday, six Israelis were arrested for the murder of a 16-year-old Palestinian boy. Israeli officials admitted the likelihood—already acknowledged by many—that this killing was carried out in revenge for the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teenagers.

Both sides have stepped up their aggression in the past few days, with rocket launches from Gaza into Israel and Israeli airstrikes against Gaza.

It’s a familiar cycle: attack for attack, murder for murder. Such patterns are familiar from conflicts across the world, but they have a special resonance in the Holy Land.

After all, it was from Israel, nearly 3,000 years ago, that this famous concept spread.

The Book of Exodus in the Hebrew Bible says, “The penalty shall be life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise.”

The Book of Deuteronomy uses even stronger language: “Show no pity: life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.”

And the Book of Leviticus says again, “Anyone who maims another shall suffer the same injury in return: fracture for fracture, eye for eye, tooth for tooth. The injury he inflicted on another shall be inflicted on him.”

Few biblical laws are repeated three times; this is one of those few. It is known as the lex talionis, or “law of retaliation,” and it would seem to be central to the biblical worldview.

Flare-up in Israeli-Palestinian violence: Why now?

This law is often brought as evidence that the Bible cannot be a reliable guide for modern morality: Who today would truly advocate for this kind of retributive justice?

It seems barbaric that the penalty for arson, for example, would be burning the arsonist to death—this sounds like something out of the Middle Ages, not out of the 21st century.

Though famously biblical, lex talionis isn’t a biblical creation at all.

It was already present in the famous Code of Hammurabi, from the 18th century BCE: “If an upper-class man should blind the eye of another upper-class man, they shall blind his eye,” and so on through breaking bones, knocking out teeth, etc.

Earlier Mesopotamian law codes, two generations before Hammurabi, take what we would consider a more civilized approach to the matter:

“If a man bites the nose of another man and thus cuts it off” —don’t ask— “he shall weigh and deliver sixty shekels of silver; an eye, sixty shekels; a tooth, thirty shekels …”

It turns out that the oldest codes in the Near Eastern legal tradition, Sumerian laws from the 21st century BCE, also have payment in place of retaliation.

The concept of “eye for an eye” isn’t really representative of some primitive state of humanity—it’s actually a development from an earlier system of monetary compensation.

Yet it was not a permanent shift; some of the earliest interpreters of the Bible read the lex talionis as advocating for monetary compensation: the value of an eye for an eye.

This remains a very common interpretation even today—quite likely as an attempt to make the biblical custom seem less harsh in comparison to contemporary cultural and legal norms.

Has the Middle East crisis reached a tipping point?

In the Talmud, the fundamental Jewish legal text, there is an extended discussion about the phrase “eye for an eye,” with multiple rabbis arguing, and the text concluding, that the phrase means nothing other than financial compensation.

Eventually, in Judaism the literal reading of lex talionis came to be associated with heresy.

There is another important aspect of “eye for an eye” that is often overlooked: in the Bible, the law prescribes that the punishment be leveled against the offending individual by the state.

It is not permitted for the victim himself to turn around and inflict the same injury on the aggressor. On this the Bible and modern law agree.

But another biblical legal tradition provides the exception to this rule, and it too has enjoyed a long life down to the present: the idea that in the case of premeditated murder, someone from the family of the victim is appointed the “blood-avenger.”

The notion of putting a murderer to death is common enough even today (see: death penalty). But not so the idea that it is the obligation of the victim’s family, rather than of a central government.

This biblical passage enshrines in law the retaliatory instinct of anyone whose close relative has been injured. And it is this instinct that we see playing itself out in the Middle East today.

The problem, both between the two nations and for the rest of the world, is defining which side is playing which role. Both Israel and Gaza believe themselves to be the blood-avenger, and the other to be the murderer.

Yet even in the case of blood vengeance, biblical law at least keeps the system under the watchful eye of the elders, who arbitrate the claims of the respective parties, just as in the more direct cases of lex talionis.

Nowhere in the world is the Bible more alive and its traditions more present than in Israel and Palestine, the lands from which the holy book emerged.

Was teen's death a revenge killing?

As the conflict between the two parties worsens, yet again, comparisons with the kinds of retaliation and blood vengeance found in the Bible grow more and more apt.

And so, therefore, does the need for a third party to play the part of arbitrator: to settle the price of monetary compensation, to declare the terms of retaliation, and to put a stop to the cycle of blood vengeance.

That's a role the Bible calls for someone to fill - and we're all still waiting.

Joel S. Baden is the author of “The Historical David: The Real Life of an Invented Hero,” and professor of Hebrew Bible at Yale Divinity School. The views expressed in this column belong to Baden.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Bible • Ethics • Foreign policy • Israel • Jerusalem • Judaism • Opinion • Palestinians • Religious violence • Violence

soundoff (3,582 Responses)
  1. Dyslexic doG

    why doesn't ONE god just show himself or herself or itself and then we can get past all this inter-religious death and destruction and damage to the human race?

    Why do all gods seem to play the same childish games of wanting people to believe in them without a shred of evidence for their existence?

    If the real god really loves us as its cult followers always preach that it does, wouldn't it spare us all this pain and torment by letting the world's population know that it is the ONLY god?

    All the god has to do is show itself, just like the stories say it did so often in ancient times, and all would be right with the world and the god would have a 100% following. Wouldn't any god want that?

    July 11, 2014 at 11:34 am |
    • bostontola

      How does an omnipotent God put it's hands in humans? It's up to humans to get new members of each religion. The best recruiting religion only has about 30% of the humans. That is pretty weak performance. Why would an omnipotent God allow such poor performance when as you said, it could easily fix that by just showing up.

      July 11, 2014 at 11:42 am |
    • Dyslexic doG

      the "loving" god is happy to see vast sections of mankind go to hell for not believing in it, just because of where they were born. Doesn't sound like a very loving god to me.

      July 11, 2014 at 11:46 am |
    • Dalahäst

      "God is love. What merit is it to know of God’s existence as a man knows the existence of his right foot? God doesn’t want our observation, nor our pitiful attempts to 'prove' his existence — he wants our love. He wants to be known in truth, as he is, as love, which is only known in the act of loving."

      Read more: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/badcatholic/2013/06/if-god-is-real-why-wont-he-show-himself.html#ixzz37B7fvGvY

      July 11, 2014 at 12:35 pm |
      • bostontola

        God must attain our belief before it can get our love.

        July 11, 2014 at 12:40 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          He does.

          July 11, 2014 at 12:42 pm |
        • bostontola

          Only from a minority, that was the point of the post.

          July 11, 2014 at 12:53 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          The OP describes searching for God as if He were looking for something like an idol. It doesn't sound like He really wants to know God. Look at the name he chooses to post under for another indication that reflects the point of his posts.

          July 11, 2014 at 2:35 pm |
        • G to the T

          "An idol" – no, unless every persons concpetion of "god" could be called an "idol". I get the impression that he is more interested in finding the "loving father" as portrayed in the bible. Why would a such a being make himself so inscrutable? You may say "Free will" but that's just a concept, one that any omnipotent being should be able work around without violating. For me, I've been asked to make a choice to believe in God or not. I'm only asking that I be allowed to make an informed choice. Second hand stories and the like aren't enough. All I've ever asked for is the proof of Thomas, so far, no dice.

          July 15, 2014 at 12:29 pm |
  2. bostontola

    Dr. Baden is creating an analogy that just doesn't fit. Eye for an eye is a justice issue regarding how individuals get retribution. The Israelis and Palestinians are at war. The bible has specific instructions on the conduct for Israelis against their enemies:

    Deut 20:10-11
    When thou comest nigh unto a city to fight against it, then proclaim peace unto it.
    And it shall be, if it make thee answer of peace, and open unto thee, then it shall be, that all the people that is found therein shall be tributaries unto thee, and they shall serve thee.

    Deut 20:12-16
    And if it will make no peace with thee, but will make war against thee, then thou shalt besiege it:
    And when the LORD thy God hath delivered it into thine hands, thou shalt smite every male thereof with the edge of the sword:
    But the women, and the little ones, and the cattle, and all that is in the city, even all the spoil thereof, shalt thou take unto thyself; and thou shalt eat the spoil of thine enemies, which the LORD thy God hath given thee.
    Thus shalt thou do unto all the cities which are very far off from thee, which are not of the cities of these nations.
    But of the cities of these people, which the LORD thy God doth give thee for an inheritance, thou shalt save alive nothing that breatheth

    So Yahweh has defined the morality of Jewish war. If Israel's enemies choose to not have war, they become Israel's servants. If Israel's enemies choose war, then kill all the males, keep the women and children and other spoils are for the taking.

    Eye for an eye was a 'civilized' control of the society at that time. The war rules are not so civilized. That is Yahweh's morality (i.e. perfect, absolute morality).

    July 11, 2014 at 11:20 am |
  3. Salero21

    JAJAJA... oops... pardon me please... I meant to say again... HAHAHA and more HAHAHA. Extremely hypocritical and Compulsive lying atheists are sending me Spam mail from CNN and WordPress.

    July 11, 2014 at 11:03 am |
    • TruthPrevails1

      Oh there you go again with the fallacious claims. Prove it is an Atheist and not your friend Theo or Kermi or the newest crazy man-kevinite or perhaps you just foolishly were not careful about protecting your privacy.
      When are you due to go back to the asylum for another shot of you anti-psychotic meds?

      July 11, 2014 at 11:15 am |
    • Dyslexic doG

      Oh Sally, for you it's not JAJAJA or HAHAHA. You are better suited to BAAA BAAA BAAA.

      July 11, 2014 at 11:37 am |
  4. ausphor

    Theo
    No not misunderstandings. Tf1 gave his interpretation of scripture based on his reading of them and you are refuting his viewpoint with you and your fellow apologetics interpretation. It is up to an individual to make up his/her mind what viewpoint to believe, I opt for tf1. Your myth is just plain silly.

    July 11, 2014 at 10:58 am |
    • ausphor

      Reply button blues, meant for THE THEO.

      July 11, 2014 at 10:59 am |
    • Theo Phileo

      It is up to an individual to make up his/her mind what viewpoint to believe...
      ------------------
      That is certainly true. Everyone is surely enti.tled to their own belief.

      "Truth" on the other hand is an entirely different matter. People don't get to make up their own "truth," since truth is what truth is, and it is outside of us. Truth is discovered and revealed, not created.

      Whereas one may "believe" that a passage may say this or that, and that belief is informed by their current worldview, what the passage ACTUALLY says goes beyond a man's mere belief. It requires study according to the analogia scriptura. The list posted by TruthPrevails reveals that the author of those issues didn't know the first thing about proper hermeneutics, and was instead posting mere opinion as if it were fact.

      You claim it is more "logical," and to you indeed it may seem to be, because you share the same worldview. However "logic" is not the right word to use since the manner that was used to obtain the meanings to the passages used anything BUT logic. At best, you can say that the list was "opinion." Certainly not logic. And certainly not truth.

      July 11, 2014 at 11:11 am |
      • ausphor

        Theo
        Yes I know you have figured out the only truth that applies to all 7 billion on earth, unfortunately for you that 7 billion disagree that you have the right to tall them what truth they believe for themselves. Pompous, arrogant, etc,. Theo.

        July 11, 2014 at 11:17 am |
      • Doris

        Yet for a source that you give to back up your subjective opinion on what you perceive as "truth", it's often quite easy to find a another source – from some of the most respected names in the study of ancient texts – that yields a different opinion. That's how it goes with the study of ancient texts. Things can harly be more subjective, more opinionated than that, IMHO.

        July 11, 2014 at 11:20 am |
        • Doris

          Typo correction: things can hardly be.....

          July 11, 2014 at 11:21 am |
        • Theo Phileo

          The meaning of scripture is determined by the Analogia Scriptura.

          July 11, 2014 at 11:39 am |
        • LaBella

          Yes, Luther introduced a lot of ideas in his quest to make all thing RC bad.

          July 11, 2014 at 12:00 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          Yes, Luther introduced a lot of ideas in his quest to make all thing RC bad.
          ---------------
          Beginning in 325AD, the amalgamation of church and government – aka, Roman Catholicism – had begun a dangerous journey away from the Apostle's teaching and into apostasy when it left the Bible behind, and began to claim justification as a result of sanctification. All of the church's heresies can be traced back to that one idea.

          July 11, 2014 at 12:33 pm |
        • Doris

          Once again, your opinion, Theo.

          July 11, 2014 at 1:04 pm |
        • LaBella

          Yes, Luther introduced a lot of ideas in his quest to make the RC look bad so he could start his own version of Christianity. I especially like his book "On Jews And Their Lies." His attempt to make the Jewish people look bad. Quality guy. Everything he said should be held to the highest authority. Sure.

          July 11, 2014 at 4:08 pm |
      • Doc Vestibule

        Translation: You are enti'tled to your own interpretation, but it is wrong because it doesn't align my mine.

        July 11, 2014 at 11:33 am |
        • snuffleupagus

          Doc, you do see that Theo uses the Analogia Scriptura, right? The first part is where he pulls his thoughts/words from. He is that retentive.

          July 11, 2014 at 12:08 pm |
      • snuffleupagus

        Theo writes: "Truth" on the other hand is an entirely different matter. People don't get to make up their own "truth," since truth is what truth is, and it is outside of us. Truth is discovered and revealed, not created".
        This and what followed.
        The babble doesn't need "tranlations," It it is written and, is innerant, according to those use it as the word of gawd-a. If gawd-a says so in his perfect word, why do you need to translate it using some method deveolped by man? I thought you were supposed to take gad-s at "his word?"

        Dude suffers fron a severe case of crainial/re.ctal inversion.

        July 11, 2014 at 12:03 pm |
  5. thesamyaza

    "Don't cheat your neighbor by moving the ancient boundary markers set up by previous generations."
    22:28

    clearly its not about religion to Israel

    July 10, 2014 at 11:56 pm |
    • TruthPrevails1

      That religious undertone will exist until this is resolved sadly.

      July 11, 2014 at 7:22 am |
      • Theo Phileo

        And it will one day be resolved when a charismatic leader (a Roman "prince") comes to the forefront and brokers a peace treaty in the land for 7 years. He will even rebuild Jerusalem's Temple. (Look at the Temple Insti.tute's website to see how close this actually is) Unfortunately, even he won't be able to keep it. After 3 1/2 years he will double cross Israel and break his own treaty with them by walking into the newly rebuilt temple and proclaiming he, himself to be God and demanding that everyone worship him.

        (See the book of Daniel)

        July 11, 2014 at 7:44 am |
        • TruthPrevails1

          Right, because it is written in the bible it won't be resolved until the Christians have seen this so-called prophecy fulfilled. So it's not really a prophecy if it's self-fulfilled.
          There is no excuse for the amount of violence happening there. If you take away the religious undertones and stop trying to fulfill the prophecy, you end this conflict and can hopefully start to recover and act like decent humans seeking peace.

          July 11, 2014 at 7:48 am |
        • Theo Phileo

          Actually, because of the Bible's untarnished record of accuracy when it comes to Biblical prophecy, I'm confident that this is ultimately how things will play out.

          July 11, 2014 at 7:55 am |
        • TruthPrevails1

          Untarnished? You do realize how foolish that sounds right? Biblical prophecies have been proven fallacious time and time again.
          Here are some of them with explanations as to why they fail/don't work:
          Genesis 26:4 And I will make thy seed to multiply as the stars of heaven, and will give unto thy seed all these countries; and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed.

          Here God tells Isaac that his descendents (Hebrews) will be as numerous as the stars. Considering the number of stars there are in the universe, that would have to be on the order of 1020 Jewish people.

          --------------------------–

          Isaiah 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

          Christians say that this verse is a prophecy of Jesus' birth to a virgin. There are a couple problems with this prophecy...First, virgin in this verse is a mistranslation of the Hebrew word "almah", which actually means "young woman". A young woman is not necessarily a virgin. "Bethulah" would have been the correct word to use if the author meant virgin. Second, nowhere in the New Testament is Jesus referred to as Immanuel.

          --------------------------–

          Isaiah 17:1 The burden of Damascus. Behold, Damascus is taken away from being a city, and it shall be a ruinous heap.

          Damascus is still inhabited today with over a million people, and hardly a ruinous heap.

          --------------------------–

          Isaiah 19:4-5 And the Egyptians will I give over into the hand of a cruel lord; and a fierce king shall rule over them, saith the Lord, the LORD of hosts. And the waters shall fail from the sea, and the river shall be wasted and dried up.

          The river mentioned here is the Nile. The Nile is still one of Egypt's greatest natural resource.

          --------------------------–

          Isaiah 19:18 In that day shall five cities in the land of Egypt speak the language of Canaan, and swear to the LORD of hosts; one shall be called, The city of destruction.

          The Canaanite language has never been spoken in Egypt, and is now an extinct.

          --------------------------–

          Isaiah 52:1 Awake, awake; put on thy strength, O Zion; put on thy beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city: for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean.

          There are uncirchttp://faithskeptic.50megs.com/prophecies.htmumcised people living in Jerusalem even today.

          --------------------------–

          Ezekiel 29:10-11 Behold, therefore I am against thee, and against thy rivers, and I will make the land of Egypt utterly waste and desolate, from the tower of Syene even unto the border of Ethiopia. No foot of man shall pass through it, nor foot of beast shall pass through it, neither shall it be inhabited forty years.

          Never in its long history has Egypt ever been uninhabited for forty years.

          --------------------------–

          Amos 9:15 And I will plant them upon their land, and they shall no more be pulled up out of their land which I have given them, saith the LORD thy God.

          Many times, Jews have been pulled up out of their land. The ownership of their land is still being fought for.

          --------------------------–

          Jonah 3:4 And Jonah began to enter into the city a day's journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown.

          Nineveh was never overthrown. Why? Because God changed his mind in verse 3:10, despite what Malachi 3:6, Numbers 23:19 and Ezekiel 24:14 says about God never changing his mind.

          Jonah 3:10 And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not.

          --------------------------–

          Zechariah 11:12 And I said unto them, If ye think good, give me my price; and if not, forbear. So they weighed for my price thirty pieces of silver.

          Christians say that this prophecy is was fulfilled when Judas received 30 pieces of silver for betraying Jesus. Matthew 27:9 recites this verse, but incorrectly credits Jeremiah with the prophecy.

          --------------------------–

          Matthew 1:22-23 Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.

          Again, Jesus is never referred to as Emmanuel (Immanuel).

          --------------------------–

          Matthew 2:23 And he came and dwelt in a city called Nazareth: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets, He shall be called a Nazarene.

          Nowhere in the Old Testament is such a prophecy found, so how could such a one be fulfilled?

          --------------------------–

          Matthew 12:5 Or have ye not read in the law, how that on the sabbath days the priests in the temple profane the sabbath, and are blameless?

          There is no passage in the Old Testament that can be attributed to what Jesus is saying here.

          --------------------------–

          Matthew 24:34 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.

          Jesus states that all the signs marking the end of the world in Matthew 24 would be fulfilled before his generation ended. That generation ended 2000 years ago, and the world has not come to an end, neither has all those signs been fulfilled.

          --------------------------–

          Matthew 27:9 Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him that was valued, whom they of the children of Israel did value.

          This prophecy was never spoken by Jeremiah.

          --------------------------–

          Matthew 26:64 Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.

          **Jesus tells the high priest that he would see his second coming. The high priest is long dead, and Jesus hasn't returned yet.

          Throughout the New Testament, the end of the world is prophesied as being very near, at hand, to be witnessed by those living at the time. Paul often told the people he preached to that they would be witnesses to Jesus' second coming. They are all long gone.

          (http://faithskeptic.50megs.com/prophecies.htm)

          It might help if you paid more attention to real world matters and kept up to date with the century in which you live instead of living in the past and helping to repeat it. Take away religion, bring this to a Secular nation and bring peace finally.

          July 11, 2014 at 8:25 am |
        • analogismos

          "——————————————————————————–

          Isaiah 19:18 In that day shall five cities in the land of Egypt speak the language of Canaan, and swear to the LORD of hosts; one shall be called, The city of destruction.

          The Canaanite language has never been spoken in Egypt, and is now an extinct.

          ——————————————————————————–

          "

          The linguistic argument could be made that Arabic IS a descendant of Canaanite (as is Hebrew).

          July 11, 2014 at 9:20 am |
        • Theo Phileo

          Yeah, I've seen those before. Unfortunately, there are some who are seriously confused about the Bible, and then they propogate their misunderstandings as if they were fact.

          Just one example, (so as to not take up a tremendous amount of space here) but the prophecy of Isiah 17:1 is about the destruction of Damascus by the Assyrians in 732BC. It says nothing about the city never being rebuilt. And so it was.

          This is just one example of how some people are seriously confused in their understanding of the Bible. They see what they want to see, because their misunderstanding supports their worldview.

          July 11, 2014 at 8:41 am |
        • Theo Phileo

          Matthew 27:9 Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him that was valued, whom they of the children of Israel did value.

          This prophecy was never spoken by Jeremiah.
          -----------------------
          Actually, I want to address this one too because it betrayes a lack of understanding of Jewish culture and theology. The statement in Matthew actually paraphrases Zechariah 11:12-13. But the Hebrew canon was divided into 3 sections, Law, Writings, and Prophets (cf. Luke 24:44). Jeremiah came first in the order of prophetic books, so the Prophets were sometimes collectively referred to by his name.

          July 11, 2014 at 8:52 am |
        • Theo Phileo

          Matthew 12:5 Or have ye not read in the law, how that on the sabbath days the priests in the temple profane the sabbath, and are blameless?

          There is no passage in the Old Testament that can be attributed to what Jesus is saying here.
          ------------------------–
          OK, one more because this one proves that whoever said this fails basic reading comprehension.
          The priests have to do their work on the Sabbath, proving that some aspects of the Sabbath restrictions are not inviolable moral absolutes, but rather precepts pertaining to the ceremonial features of the law.

          July 11, 2014 at 9:03 am |
        • Theo Phileo

          Matthew 26:64 Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.

          **Jesus tells the high priest that he would see his second coming. The high priest is long dead, and Jesus hasn't returned yet.
          --------------------
          OK, I've got to answer this one too. (this is FUN!)
          No, Jesus isn't telling the high priest that he will see his second coming. What Jesus is doing is borrowing imagery from Psalm 110:1 and Daniel 7:13 to answer the high priests question: YES, Jesus IS the Christ! That's why the high priest tore his robes and accused Jesus of blasphemy, because he recognized that Jesus, by quoting these OT passages to refer to Himself, that He was claiming to be God.

          The high priest, like many today, did not understand how to accurately apply the OT.

          July 11, 2014 at 9:46 am |
        • lunchbreaker

          As a non-believer, I find the idea that a particular religion would view a peacemaker as bringing about the end of the world very scary.

          peacemaker = antichrist
          antichrist = worst person ever
          So, peacemaker = worst person ever.

          To me that is dangerous. Any politicion trying to negotiate peace is fair game to be veiwed as the antichrist. That to me makes Armegeddon a self fulfilling prophecy, hardly divine revelation.

          Now that I think about it, aren't the peacemakers supposed to be called children of God?

          July 11, 2014 at 9:55 am |
        • Theo Phileo

          lunchbreaker,
          The difference is that the anti-christ fills a very specific role. One whose attributes have been foretold by prophets, so that when those distinctions are being recognized one-by-one like a line of falling dominos, those here on earth will see him for who he is. As a matter of fact, when he will walk into the temple of God, declaring himself to be God, it is then that it will all make sense to Israel, they will see that they have been deceived, and when they reject him, he begins a slaughter of God's people that will be unparalleled in all of human history.

          Christians are to be peacemakers, but not peacemakers at the expense of God's decrees.

          July 11, 2014 at 10:08 am |
        • midwest rail

          "...those here on earth will see him for who he is."
          And over the years, true believers have seen hundreds.

          July 11, 2014 at 10:11 am |
        • Theo Phileo

          And over the years, true believers have seen hundreds.
          ------------
          Yup. Even the Bible says there are many "antichrist(s)." All the word means is "in stead of" or "against" Christ, and truely there HAVE been many who fill that role. However, speaking of THE antichrist, that ti.tle speaks of a specific one who is yet to come – spoken of by Daniel and John.

          July 11, 2014 at 10:19 am |
        • midwest rail

          "...that ti.tle speaks of a specific one who is yet to come – spoken of by Daniel and John."
          Again, over the years, true believers have seen hundreds, all of whom were believed to be that specific one.

          July 11, 2014 at 10:21 am |
        • Theo Phileo

          Again, over the years, true believers have seen hundreds, all of whom were believed to be that specific one.
          -------------
          Sure, and in the same sense, many naturalists have thought it possible that life can come from non-life. Anyone can make a mistake.

          July 11, 2014 at 10:25 am |
        • In Santa We Trust

          theo, You're misinformed – that's not an error. Various experiments have shown that under normal conditions on Earth, amino acids can be formed. That provides the building blocks of life – no supernatural activity required.

          July 11, 2014 at 10:30 am |
        • Theo Phileo

          Various experiments have shown that under normal conditions on Earth, amino acids can be formed. That provides the building blocks of life – no supernatural activity required
          -------------
          At the risk of getting a little sidetracked here, and with respect, amino acids are not life. All that has happened was to take some ingredients and combined them to make other ingredients, but no life was made. Life is something more than just the sum of its parts. And the fact that abiogenesis is an unproven model is evidence to that.

          July 11, 2014 at 10:38 am |
        • ausphor

          Lordy, lordy, who opened this Pandora's Box. Now we are going to get 2000 years of BS apologetics from Theo for hours. Well, I guess it keeps him away from first cause and casual chain nonsense, the silver lining.

          July 11, 2014 at 10:44 am |
        • Theo Phileo

          Blame TruthPrevails1. They posted a list of misunderstandings of the Bible, so I began to show how the list was compiled by one who is sorely confused about the Bible and has no reading comprehension skills.

          July 11, 2014 at 10:47 am |
        • ausphor

          Theo
          No not a misunderstanding at all just a more logical interpretation than yours. Fuller reply above this thread in error, my perfection is slipping.

          July 11, 2014 at 11:02 am |
        • James XCIX

          Theo – "Actually, because of the Bible's untarnished record of accuracy when it comes to Biblical prophecy,"

          What are your examples of fulfilled Biblical prophecies that can only have supernatural explanations?

          July 11, 2014 at 11:07 am |
        • Theo Phileo

          James XCIX,
          There are many, but start with this one...

          Cyrus is called specifically by name that he will rescue Israel from Babylon and rebuild the Temple of Jerusalem.

          Isaiah 44:24-28, 45:1-7,13 – Isaiah (written b/w 700-681 BC), predicts that a pagan king named Cyrus will release Israel from its Babylonian captivity, build Jerusalem, and lay the foundation for the Temple.

          On October 29, 539 BC, Cyrus took the city of Babylon as depicted in Daniel 5 (536-530BC). (Daniel 6:28 illustrates that Darius the Mede is Cyrus the Persian. Darius is actually a ti.tle, not a name, and was given to at least 5 different Persian rulers.)

          In 536 BC, Cyrus ordered the rebuilding of the Temple (2 Chronicles 36:21-23, Ezra 1:1-3, 6:3) and in 516 BC the work was completed (Ezra 6:15), fulfilling the prophecy. (Darius was also the first to crucify in great numbers, and could possibly have been the first to use crucifixion as a punishment)

          July 11, 2014 at 11:15 am |
        • James XCIX

          Theo – I think it's widely accepted that the Cyrus "prophecy" was written after the fact.

          July 11, 2014 at 11:21 am |
        • Theo Phileo

          People are forced to say that if they have a worldview that denies miracles. In fact there are no real reasons to posit that the later chapters of Isaiah were not written by him.

          July 11, 2014 at 11:34 am |
        • TruthPrevails1

          Theo: I quoted my source, so only a portion of that is my word. I was merely pointing out how biblical prophecy can be interpreted. I don't see where any of it is wrong but you're biased and refuse to look outside of that book or studies done that revert back to that book, so of course I'm not expecting you to have an open-mind here. You have weirdly decided to remain stuck in the past and those who do that are doomed to repeat history....that's a very dangerous thing at times. Please order cable, buy a computer and connect with the 21st century.

          July 11, 2014 at 11:37 am |
        • In Santa We Trust

          theo
          "At the risk of getting a little sidetracked here, and with respect, amino acids are not life."

          Then you shouldn't have introduced it. And
          That's why I said building blocks of life. A good description of self-assembly, proteins, DNA, etc. has been posted several times here recently.

          July 11, 2014 at 11:37 am |
        • Dyslexic doG

          @Theo, you must love the daily horoscopes! All those prophecies they get right every day. It's all proof that astrology is god.

          July 11, 2014 at 11:39 am |
        • colin31714

          "People are forced to say that if they have a worldview that denies miracles."

          Just like psychiatrists are "forced" to say that neurological disorders cause mental illness by their worldview that denies possession by demons.

          Just like aircraft engineers are "forced" to say that differentials in air pressure cause lift in wings by their worldview that denies that teams of fairies lift planes off the ground.

          Just like evolutionary biologists are "forced" to say life gradually evolved over billions of years by their worldview that denies talking snakes.

          July 11, 2014 at 11:45 am |
        • awanderingscot

          "Theo – I think it's widely accepted that the Cyrus "prophecy" was written after the fact."

          – this is a totally unsubstantiated fabrication.

          July 11, 2014 at 12:27 pm |
        • Doris

          Nonsense, Snotty. Most scholars agree that section of Isaiah was written before the date when the alleged "prophecy" was to come true, so even if the prediction was not made after the event its occurrence at least was imminent and the name of Cyrus would have been known.

          July 11, 2014 at 1:57 pm |
        • awanderingscot

          Log
          "The Canaanite language has never been spoken in Egypt, and is now an extinct."

          this is an ignorant statement and you need to go back and brush up on your history.

          July 11, 2014 at 1:57 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @Awanderingscot
          A handful of itinerant Jews didn't change the linguistic landscape.
          Historical records from the era aren't written in the Canaanite language.

          July 11, 2014 at 1:59 pm |
        • awanderingscot

          Dorus
          "most scholars"

          – your saying "most scholars" does not establish fact and certainly is contrary to written record. How in the world could it possibly been after his decree and after he had died in 530 BCE. don't be stupid.

          July 11, 2014 at 2:04 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          @Scot
          Out of curiosity, is your deliberate misspelling of people's names "Dorus, D0c" supposed to be some kind of insult?

          July 11, 2014 at 2:08 pm |
        • neverbeenhappieratheist

          All I'm hearing from the biblical prophecy defenders is a whole lot of nothing and a bucket of whine. Someone might mistake it for a party with so much song and dance...

          July 11, 2014 at 2:08 pm |
        • awanderingscot

          @D0C
          "A handful of itinerant Jews didn't change the linguistic landscape."
          – don't be stupid, Hebrew is a Canaanite language and was dominantly spoken in Egypt in those 5 cities of the eastern delta region during the Ptolemaic era. go back and brush up on your history.

          July 11, 2014 at 2:21 pm |
        • Doc Vestibule

          Greek was the language of the court, the army, and the administration. The Ptolemies founded the university, the museum, and the library at Alexandria and built the lighthouse at Pharos.
          But the Egyptian language remained the language of the vast majority of the population, the language of the temples, and the language of Egyptian culture.

          July 11, 2014 at 2:27 pm |
        • Doris

          wandering: – your saying "most scholars" does not establish fact and certainly is contrary to written record. How in the world could it possibly been after his decree and after he had died in 530 BCE. don't be stupid.

          First of all, I didn't claim the majority opinion as fact. Secondly – what "written record"? What "written record" that would be proof of anything? Thirdly, if you'd think for a minute, you'd realize the majority scholarly opinion suggests there is more to consider than an alleged date of a death.

          July 11, 2014 at 2:27 pm |
        • James XCIX

          Theo –

          Sorry, the Cyrus prophecy has too many problems (easy to look up what they are). Any other supposedly fulfilled prophecies you had in mind?

          July 11, 2014 at 7:05 pm |
      • awanderingscot

        D0C
        – just curious; is your casting aspersions on people's intelligence, your baiting people with deliberate rendering of scripture out of context, the mocking of Christianity with childish poems, just accidental?

        July 11, 2014 at 2:35 pm |
  6. Alias

    http://beforeitsnews.com/blogging-citizen-journalism/2012/10/cnn-exposed-emmy-winning-former-cnn-journalist-amber-lyon-blows-the-whistle-2444190.html

    They are biased in their coverage of Israel too.

    July 10, 2014 at 9:59 pm |
  7. Vic

    After skimming through the comments today, I finally found one that is relevant to the Blog post, that is, to paraphrase, what is the solution to the conflict between the two sides?

    I believe proper understanding of the problem/diagnosis is half the solution/remedy. This conflict is an ideological problem before it is a political one; therefore, a political solution alone will not work. Only an ideological solution would work where the political mechanism follows.

    Early on:
    https://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2014/07/08/eye-for-an-eye-the-bibles-role-in-revenge-attacks/comment-page-1/#comment-3043150

    July 10, 2014 at 8:07 pm |
    • thesamyaza

      the only solution is for everyone to come to Jesus, is that right.

      dude that's nonsense you cannot make every one follow a single ideology Humans are not ants we have individuality, even if ever one did come to Christ the same problem will persist, it wouldn't be the fist time Christians killed Christians for not being the same sect of Christianity. your whole argument can be used for any and every ideology in order to stop ideological warfare, that's what ideological warfare. weather its Rome trying to Civilize the world or Gauls trying to preserve their way of life their can be no solution but violence. i would say that if every one were to coexist and accept others ideologies then the problem will vanish, but then i would be saying the same as you.

      oh and except Chaos as the universes natural order, except that war is a natural part of the human experience. done correctly it solves conflicts and diminishes populations, done incorrectly (Industrilized war) and it harms more then just humans it harm our ecosystem.

      July 10, 2014 at 8:41 pm |
    • kenmargo

      If you get rid of guns and god you'll solve a lot of the problems. Period.

      July 10, 2014 at 8:48 pm |
      • awanderingscot

        yeah right, take for example the former Soviet Union; a godless paradise. lol

        July 11, 2014 at 3:30 pm |
    • Blessed are the Cheesemakers

      I wanna know why believing in and asking your god for forgivness equates to "ultimate justice"...

      seems to me that would be the suspension of of justice.

      July 10, 2014 at 11:27 pm |
  8. observer

    noahsdadtopher,

    Sorry you missed this. Please answer before running off:

    "His standard is perfection"

    Do you consider support for SLAVERY to be a "perfect standard"?
    Do you consider discrimination against women to be a "perfect standard"?
    Do you consider discrimination against the handicapped to be a "perfect standard"?
    Do you consider beating helpless children with a rod to be a "perfect standard"?

    July 10, 2014 at 5:44 pm |
    • observer

      "C'mon, dude. Don't run away. Answer the questions"
      - noahsdadtopher

      July 10, 2014 at 6:10 pm |
    • awanderingscot

      you are unregenerate and blind, thus you cannot reason in these matters. you won't be able to see as long as you are a hatetheist.

      July 11, 2014 at 1:17 pm |
      • Doris

        And you're of course just Snotty – snotty to those who don't share your same opinion.

        July 11, 2014 at 1:25 pm |
        • awanderingscot

          "snotty" to unregenerate dogs like you and observer who evilly twist and distort scripture.

          July 11, 2014 at 1:45 pm |
      • neverbeenhappieratheist

        It is really funny to hear someone call another person names claiming they "cannot reason in these matters" such as biblical slavery. Anytime you hear a person defending slavery you can pretty much discard anything and everything they have to say as they aren't worth the skin they were printed on.

        July 11, 2014 at 2:13 pm |
        • awanderingscot

          are you a multi-billionaire? no? then you are a slave too.

          July 11, 2014 at 3:33 pm |
        • LaBella

          Slaves do not paid. Employees are. There is a difference.

          July 11, 2014 at 4:14 pm |
  9. Dyslexic doG

    Romans 12:19
    Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”

    July 10, 2014 at 5:33 pm |
  10. Dyslexic doG

    I am seeing chatter about all of mankind being sinners because of "the fall". Please tell me what sort of asinine fool spends so much time and effort and goodness to create from nothing a perfect universe and a perfect existence with all of its intricacy ... and then when it's finally done, tricks Eve into eating an apple so that he can then undo his master work that he put so much time and effort into and turn it into the barely holding together chaos that we see today that he has to constantly micromanage? Seriously?

    July 10, 2014 at 5:13 pm |
    • observer

      Dyslexic doG,

      Don't blame God. It was the talking serpent, of course.

      July 10, 2014 at 5:15 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        doesn't god have a master plan, or does he not have control of the way things go? Is the serpent more powerful than god?

        July 10, 2014 at 5:20 pm |
        • observer

          Dyslexic doG,

          His apparent master plan was for man to live forever, but the 2nd person he created blew that.

          His apparent master plan was for man not to kill other men, but the 1st human baby born blew that.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:40 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          and the plan apparently never included the second person. planning not a strong suit.

          July 10, 2014 at 6:00 pm |
        • believerfred

          InSantaWeTrust
          What second person are you talking about?

          July 10, 2014 at 6:15 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          Eve

          July 10, 2014 at 6:16 pm |
        • believerfred

          Omniscience covers not only what will happen but all the what if possibilities. Our speculations are nonsense.
          What we see written is that there were two trees in the middle of the Garden. Eve or Adam could have chosen either tree yet this is the story about mankind rejecting the way God created which was very good. In the same chapter we see a way was already created that resolved all this choice and restored what was very good. After creating God said it is very good and rested. God is not wrong and creation is very good.
          All things work to the good of those who are in Christ as Paul said. When all is said and done we are back at the beginning and in the beginning was the word and the word was with God. God said let there be light and the light separated the darkness. In the End good and evil are separate eternally that is the master plan from the beginning. Creation is an expression of God that began with the word and is always very good against the backdrop of no creation or a void.

          July 10, 2014 at 6:59 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          fred
          "Omniscience covers not only what will happen but all the what if possibilities."

          But god did not foresee – that man would want a companion, that the snake would talk to the humans, that the humans would choose knowledge (and why else was that tree there), that humans would not please god, and after the flood that again humans would not please god.

          July 10, 2014 at 7:04 pm |
        • bostontola

          ISWT,
          That is a really big issue I have with omniscience. An omniscient being would know everything that would happen through all time right at the instant of creation. There would be no purpose to actually play it all out. The entirety of the universe's existence will have already taken place in God's mind.

          July 10, 2014 at 7:12 pm |
        • believerfred

          In Santa We Trust
          Omniscience covers all scenarios without exception.
          We are physical beings and tied to a linear time line of past, present and future. God is not.
          Moses must explain to his audience why we exist and if there is God how are we to respond in the timeline known to man not a time dimension that is incomprehensible. Moses must explain that which is of substance unknown to man (God) in a way it is understood and an anthropomorphic expression is the best we can do.
          That said:
          "But god did not foresee – that man would want a companion"
          =>"It is not good for the man to be alone" are the words used--so God did know and provided
          "that the snake would talk to the humans"
          =>"the serpent was more crafty than any other animal"- deception required capacity to deceive
          "that the humans would choose knowledge (and why else was that tree there)"
          =>It was not knowledge but knowledge of good and evil. In the image of God there is no limit in man we want it all.
          an you are correct we will not please God.
          "after the flood that again humans would not please god."
          =>The flood story is a warning. Mankind will reach a point where wickedness is such that salvation is impossible. When the last family that can be redeemed is redeemed evil will be wiped from the face of the earth. Good and evil separated eternally. My speculation is that we exist to reveal our true soul in the presence of desires that are not Gods will for our lives

          July 10, 2014 at 8:07 pm |
        • observer

          believerfred

          "It is not good for the man to be alone" are the words used–so God did know and provided"

          Yes, AFTER he realized that he hadn't PROVIDED originally during his 6-day construction.

          July 10, 2014 at 8:12 pm |
        • believerfred

          bostontola
          "The entirety of the universe's existence will have already taken place in God's mind"
          =>In our perspective that is how it would appear (i.e. we can't shake our sense of a linear timeline). God however simply is as past, present and future is not a limiting construct. Always in the moment and always eternal.

          July 10, 2014 at 8:25 pm |
        • believerfred

          observer
          No, "it is not good for man to be alone" is not a past or present tense it "is" not good for man to be alone.

          "In the image of God he created man male and female he created them" is out of Genesis 1 where Moses is presenting Creator God. In Genesis 2 Moses is presenting the personal God and now man is created by the hand of God, women to complete man was created from man. God is now a personal God providing for man caring about man. Relationship between man women and God is presented in Genesis 2.

          July 10, 2014 at 8:36 pm |
        • observer

          believerfred

          (Gen. 2:18-22 “Then the Lord God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him." Out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the sky, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called a living creature, that was its name. The man gave names to all the cattle, and to the birds of the sky, and to every beast of the field, but for Adam there was not found a helper suitable for him. "

          So God made Adam, THEN the animals and THEN made Adam a HELPER.

          So God didn't make Eve as a HELPER until LATER.

          July 10, 2014 at 8:53 pm |
        • bostontola

          fred,
          You echoed my point. Since an omniscient God already knows everything, playing it out in the physical world is completely redundant.

          July 10, 2014 at 9:02 pm |
        • believerfred

          bostontola
          Not if this is the only way we can have free will as to good and evil. At our level we need to walk it and in doing so become more Christlike and desire it. To love God deeply requires a strong emotive experience.

          July 10, 2014 at 9:08 pm |
        • bostontola

          fred,
          There is no conflict between free will and someone (God) knowing how you will choose. An omniscient being already knows every free choice that will be made by every human that will ever live.

          July 10, 2014 at 9:29 pm |
        • believerfred

          bostontola
          I know many racers who claim they can win, believe they can win yet fail in the last few seconds because they because they did not have it in them for the final push. They actually must give it that push and dig deep one time and they finish every race thereafter with that extra kick. This is why I think you must actually experience and make that first step of desire. Certainly God could snap his finger and be done with it but there is a difference to us when we dig deeper than we think possible. Faith requires that you step out in the faith God gives you.

          July 11, 2014 at 1:52 am |
        • kevinite

          Regarding God's foreknowledge of events, is it due to in spite of giving free will or is it due because of it? After all, to not give that free will in the first place would change the outcome of those events, therefore that foreknowledge would be different. So, whether or not God has that foreknowledge that doesn't change the point that free will is still given and that we still have that power to choose in the meantime.

          July 11, 2014 at 1:58 am |
        • bostontola

          fred,
          Every person can have 100% free will and an omniscient being would still know the outcome. It would know the outcome of every choice, every race, etc. long before they ever happen. It would be a free will choice, it's just that the omniscient one already knows, that's what omniscience is. There is no conflict in that. The only issue is, playing out the physical world would be redundant.

          July 11, 2014 at 9:03 am |
    • Dalahäst

      No, not at all. The story that describes something like "the fall" ("the fall" is never mentioned in the story) never says this creation is perfect. It says it is good.

      July 10, 2014 at 5:19 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        now that looks like a cop out to me but OK.

        So, can you think why he would settle with just "good" by design? And the question still remains: why would he make it "good" and then let it all be torn down and thrown into the chaos we now see?

        July 10, 2014 at 5:22 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          What if Adam and Eve told the truth instead of hiding, lying and shifting blame? It seems like they robbed God of being the forgiving and redemptive God God wants to be for us.

          Those stories tell the origin of things. Love, forgiveness, mercy and grace have an origin – God. And those things are kind of a big deal to God.

          Lying, blaming and shame also have an origin, and it is not from God.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:33 pm |
        • bostontola

          If I created a robot that went awry and started attacking people, I would feel that I was responsible.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:42 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          Would you feel sorry that you had made it?

          July 10, 2014 at 5:49 pm |
        • bostontola

          It depends on how much damage was done, but probably yes.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:55 pm |
        • joey3467

          I certainly would not let more robots with the same flaws on the loose.

          July 10, 2014 at 7:36 pm |
      • joey3467

        God, being perfect and all, could only create exactly what he wanted. He obviously wouldn't have messed up so if god created imperfect beings then that is exactly what he wanted.

        July 10, 2014 at 5:41 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          He created creatures capable of love with the capacity to do amazing things – at the same time they can choose to not love and do horrible things. We are not robots forced to love.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:45 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          so your god created deliberately faulty creatures just to sit back and watch the fun ensue ... ah what a guy.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:49 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          No. He has a plan of salvation for His whole creation. You can be a part of it, or reject it.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:50 pm |
      • In Santa We Trust

        dala, So an omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent being is capable of creating a universe but not designing humans the way it believes they should live; but it had no power over the talking snake; but it had no way to prevent Adam and Eve from "disobeying". Yet can create a universe and flood the earth. Very credible.

        July 10, 2014 at 5:49 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          No, he allows things to happen like that. Doesn't mean He approves of them. He gave this world to man. We are responsible, what we do matters.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:51 pm |
    • bostontola

      Perfection would be boring?

      I wish God had created the universe such that ~13.8B years later a set of stars in another galaxy would align in a way that when viewed from earth would look like Homer Simpson's head with a doughnut in his mouth. That would be cool to have Hubble relay that image to us.

      July 10, 2014 at 5:23 pm |
    • MadeFromDirt

      Dyslexic, you are looking at the situation from the perspective of a creature, not the Creator. While the Bible tells us this universe and especially man are unique creations of God, there is no telling what He created in eternity past, nor what He will continue to create in the future. Compared to eternity, this universe with its limits of time and space fades to nothing. And even though this universe is meticulously designed, God having infinite power did not exhaust or deplete any of His power to create it nor to sustain it, and rather than losing or wasting anything, this creation adds to His glory. Yes it does, because even though this creation has been fouled by evil, God having perfect love and grace is still able to exercise those qualities to redeem a chosen and cleansed people from this creation for His purposes.

      July 10, 2014 at 7:24 pm |
    • ddeevviinn

      What sort of asinine fool?

      The sort that has the same perspective and limited understanding of a finite human being who plods along this earth 80, maybe 90 years and then returns to dust. The sort whose motives and actions are unjust and nonsensical unless they successfully pass through the filter of human reasoning. The same sort who is sitting up in heaven feverishly micromanaging ( as if God even cognitively functions like humans) the affairs of men in order to " keep up."

      This is the "sort" of being you are talking about. Has absolutely nothing to do with the God of the Bible, but it is the image of your false perception.

      July 10, 2014 at 7:33 pm |
  11. Alias

    and I expect to get banned (again) any minute now.

    July 10, 2014 at 4:15 pm |
    • noahsdadtopher

      Why are you going to get banned?

      July 10, 2014 at 4:22 pm |
      • Alias

        for posting things like this:
        The 'problem that needs to be solved' is that when the jews were given their land in the 1940's they displaced a large group of peple, now the residents of Palestine. The residents of Palestine want their land and houses back.
        The Israilies are treating the Palistinians in ways that would make Hitler proud, and the USA uses its Veto to kee p the UN from doing anything.

        July 10, 2014 at 4:31 pm |
        • kenmargo

          simple way of putting it.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:43 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      are you a sinner?

      July 10, 2014 at 4:22 pm |
      • Alias

        Aren't we all?
        Or rational human beings, one or the other.

        July 10, 2014 at 4:42 pm |
  12. Dyslexic doG

    if you'd like a laugh, here's a christian website's explanation for the holy trinity:

    "God is God. He can do anything, be anything, be everything at every moment of every second of every day. We are people, sand our minds can't always understand everything about God. This is why we have things like the Bible and prayer to bring us closer to understanding Him, but we won't know everything like He does. It may not be the cleanest or most satisfying answer to say that we cannot fully understand God, so we need to learn to accept it, but it is part of the answer. There are so many things to learn about God and His desires for us, that getting caught up on the Holy Trinity and explaining it as something scientific can take us away from the glory of His creation. We need to just remember that He is our God. We need to read the teachings of Jesus. We need to listen to His Spirit talking to our hearts. That is the purpose of the Trinity, and that is the most important thing we need to understand about it."

    July 10, 2014 at 4:09 pm |
    • kenmargo

      In other words. Do as we say and no one gets hurt!

      July 10, 2014 at 4:31 pm |
    • lunchbreaker

      I can beat that. My highschool philosophy teacher, at a private Christian school in Alabama, in reference to understanding God said:

      "God is God, and you are not."

      Actually made sense to me at the time.

      July 10, 2014 at 5:26 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        oh my.

        July 11, 2014 at 11:50 am |
      • djangoboy

        Sounds like, "I'm Chevy Chase ... and you're not!"

        Except Chevy Chase was real.

        July 11, 2014 at 12:20 pm |
  13. Lucifer's Evil Twin

    I have seen the writing on the wall
    Don't think I need anything at all
    No don't think I'll need anything at all
    All in all it was all just bricks in the wall
    All in all you were just bricks in the wall

    July 10, 2014 at 3:47 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      if you don't eat your meat, you can't have any pudding!!!

      July 10, 2014 at 4:03 pm |
      • LaBella

        How can you have any pudding if you don't eat yer meat?!

        July 10, 2014 at 4:13 pm |
    • QuestionsEverything

      All alone, or in two's,
      The ones who really love you
      Walk up and down outside the wall.
      Some hand in hand
      And some gathered together in bands.
      The bleeding hearts and artists
      Make their stand.

      And when they've given you their all
      Some stagger and fall, after all it's not easy
      Banging your heart against some mad bugger's wall.

      July 10, 2014 at 5:34 pm |
  14. Dyslexic doG

    Folks I invite you to go and read Genesis chapters 1 and 2 again. Theo just asked me to read it ALL in its entirety to prove to me that there are no contradictions and that it is a real account of the beginning of the universe.

    Anyone reading this childish, scientifically ignorant, fairy tale will either become an atheist on the spot or will at least doubt what they have been taught. Please read it. It's amazing stuff.

    July 10, 2014 at 3:23 pm |
    • noahsdadtopher

      Yes, please read it. It's very cool stuff.

      July 10, 2014 at 3:31 pm |
    • bostontola

      I've read it multiple times. Even when I was a small kid, I never once thought it was to be taken literally. My teachers always taught the lessons from the stories so I took them as allegories with a moral.

      July 10, 2014 at 3:33 pm |
      • joey3467

        Yeah, me too. How anybody could read Genesis and believe all of it to be literally true is beyond my comprehension.

        July 10, 2014 at 3:36 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          Because that's the style of writing used — historical narrative.

          July 10, 2014 at 3:40 pm |
        • Lucifer's Evil Twin

          "historical narrative"?? That would be a no. Fantasy fiction is more accurate...

          July 10, 2014 at 3:51 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          Fantasy fiction is more accurate..
          ---------------
          There's an even better word: myth. Most myths are written as narratives.

          July 10, 2014 at 3:56 pm |
        • joey3467

          Like I said Topher, the fact that anyone could read that and honestly think it is all literally true, blows my mind.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:07 pm |
        • ausphor

          joey
          Anybody that believes that would also probably believe the Noah's Ark insanity.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:18 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      It is clear that they are two different narratives, stapled together.

      Chapter one consistently refers to "God" and chapter two refers to "Lord God". While these both refer to Elohim (not Yahweh by the way) the distinction between Elohim and Hashem Elohim indicates style and different authorship.

      It is likely that Chapter 1 is a much newer story, written after settling down on monotheism during the Babylonian exilic period. (Priestly source). Chapter 2 is the older narrative and is in the Jahwist source.

      July 10, 2014 at 3:41 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      The most obvious differences are of course the sequences:

      Genesis Chapter 1
      ---------
      – Beginning: Heavens and earth, darkness and waters
      – 'Day' 1: Light! night and day
      – 'Day' 2: Waters in the sky (atmosphere)
      – 'Day' 3: Dry land, plants
      – 'Day' 4: Sun, moon and stars
      – 'Day' 5: Sea creatures, birds
      – 'Day' 6: Land animals, Humans (male and female)
      – 'Day' 7: Miller time

      Genesis Chapter 2
      ---------
      – Man
      – Plants
      – Animals and birds
      – Woman

      They are quite different.

      July 10, 2014 at 4:08 pm |
      • Dyslexic doG

        yep.

        July 10, 2014 at 4:10 pm |
      • bostontola

        I wonder why the creation of air was left out.

        July 10, 2014 at 4:43 pm |
      • djangoboy

        Plus in Genesis 1, we have night and day before we have the Sun. Oops!

        July 11, 2014 at 12:21 pm |
  15. kenmargo

    There are 3 (possible) ways to solve the issue between Israel and the Palestinians.

    Let them negotiate a settlement. (Never will happen)

    Let them fight to the finish. (Israel will destroy them)

    Force a solution on both sides. (most likely)

    If you got a better idea lets hear it.

    July 10, 2014 at 3:15 pm |
    • bostontola

      ken,
      That does summarize the span of options and i agree mostly with the assessments. I might tweak your 3rd option and characterize it as binding arbitration rather than forced solution. The terms of the arbitration would have to be negotiated as well.

      Baseball has an interesting approach. Both sides come in with a solution. The arbiter must pick one of them with no modifications. It forces the sides to be reasonable as outlandish demands will not be picked.

      July 10, 2014 at 3:27 pm |
      • kenmargo

        The question: Who would be the arbiter(s)?

        July 10, 2014 at 3:40 pm |
        • bostontola

          It would have to be mutually agreed on by the parties. They would have to agree to arbitration. I think it's worth a try.

          July 10, 2014 at 3:44 pm |
        • kenmargo

          They can't agree on the time of day!

          Since the U.S. is always drawn into this mess. Let the U.S. put an overall plan in place. Accept proposals from other countries in the U.N. permanent members. Fine tune it then put it in place. Have U.N. monitors keep the peace and we move on!

          July 10, 2014 at 3:50 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          "Since the U.S. is always drawn into this mess."
          ----------------------–
          Because the US insisted in wading in in 1947.

          July 10, 2014 at 3:58 pm |
        • kenmargo

          I never said were innocent bystanders in this.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:30 pm |
    • Lucifer's Evil Twin

      COA 2

      July 10, 2014 at 3:57 pm |
  16. Dalahäst

    "You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.

    Maybe when Jesus says to love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you it's not so that you can be good. It's so you can be free. Free from the bondage of hatred.

    July 10, 2014 at 3:02 pm |
    • noahsdadtopher

      There are none who are good. No, not one.

      July 10, 2014 at 3:13 pm |
      • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

        By that standard "none" are bad either.

        To say everyone is "bad" makes the word completely meaningless.

        July 10, 2014 at 3:25 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          How so is it meaningless?

          July 10, 2014 at 3:30 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          If everything is "bad", what is the reference point.

          Bad cannot exist without good, otherwise the words have no meaning. Light/dark, good/bad, hot/cold, etc.

          July 10, 2014 at 3:44 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          God is good. He is the standard. And we all fall short. "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God."

          July 10, 2014 at 3:47 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          By your standard, everyone might as well live in hedonism and selfishness, since no one can be good anyway and people are only saved by God's grace/mercy. So why would anyone behave differently from selfishness (by trying to be "good")?

          This is the flaw in your "everyone is bad" dogmatic stance. This is all dogma, with zero reality.

          Anyone can tell the difference between a person who tries to be "good" and a person who is willfully "bad". This is self-evident to any human in any culture. To say differently tries to supplant reality with dogma, but that's pretty much your MO.

          July 10, 2014 at 3:54 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          "By your standard, everyone might as well live in hedonism and selfishness, since no one can be good anyway and people are only saved by God's grace/mercy. So why would anyone behave differently from selfishness (by trying to be "good")?"

          Because of what Christ did for us. If you are continually living in sin it shows your lack of understanding for what He did, or shows your rejection of the gift offered to you. And if you die in those sins, God will simply give you what you deserve.

          "Anyone can tell the difference between a person who tries to be "good" and a person who is willfully "bad"."

          First, the Bible tells us that even are good works, because they come from someone corrupt, are worthless. "We have all become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment." (read: used menstrual rag.)

          And we are ALL willfully bad. You know lying is wrong, yet I'm sure you've done it. Not because I know you, but because we've all lied. And the Bible says that ALL liars (even if it's only one) will have their part in the lake of fire. How many times have you taken something that hasn't belonged to you? How many times have you used God's name to express disgust? How many times — even just today — have you looked at someone with lust? We're all guilty. And we all deserve punishment. But God, who is love, doesn't will for anyone to perish. So He left His throne in Heaven to live the perfect life we haven't and voluntarily go to the cross to take the punishment we deserve. There's no kinder thing that anyone could have or would do for you.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:05 pm |
        • joey3467

          Yes, nobody should ever try to do anything good for someone else because that is selfish? Do you actually think about what you are saying?

          July 10, 2014 at 4:10 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          joey3467

          Where did I say that?

          July 10, 2014 at 4:13 pm |
        • ausphor

          Topher and all his creationist buddies left reality far behind when they became born again.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:13 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          Because of what Christ did for us.
          -------------------–
          What Christ *actually* did for us is say inspiring things like:

          "You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you."

          This is worthwhile advice. I'll reiterate Dala's observation, it's not about being good for the sake of being good, it's about being free. It was a worthy observation which you wanted to bury in semantic dogmatism.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:14 pm |
        • joey3467

          "First, the Bible tells us that even are good works, because they come from someone corrupt, are worthless."

          It is the logical extension of what you posted. If good works are worthless, then why bother? Luckily I don't believe that or I would be a pretty terrible person.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:16 pm |
        • joey3467

          Lying isn't always wrong. Is it wrong to lie to a parent and tell them that their baby is cute when you think it is as ugly as sin? I don't think so.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:19 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          joey3467

          "It is the logical extension of what you posted. If good works are worthless, then why bother? Luckily I don't believe that or I would be a pretty terrible person."

          They are worthless in as far as trying to earn your way to heaven. We are still called to do good things for others. They just don't earn you any points with God.

          Do you consider yourself to be a good person?

          July 10, 2014 at 4:20 pm |
        • joey3467

          Most of the time, and nothing you quote from the bible will change my mind, so don't bother.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:25 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          So you've lied?

          July 10, 2014 at 4:26 pm |
        • joey3467

          Of course I have lied Topher, so what? Lying every now and then doesn't make someone a horrible person.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:39 pm |
        • joey3467

          If god is the standard for good then I have a lot of people I need to kill.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:45 pm |
        • ausphor

          joey
          In order to understand Topher you have to know that he has broken all ten commandments. He is such a disp!cable sinner in his own mind that he has to have a saviour. He is breeding.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:48 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          joey3467

          Have you ever stolen anything? It doesn't matter how long ago it was or how much the object was worth. Download music? Not clock in on time or take time in some other way from your boss?

          July 10, 2014 at 4:49 pm |
        • observer

          noahsdadtopher

          "They just don't earn you any points with God."

          Neither does opposition to slavery and bigoted discriminations. So what is your point?

          July 10, 2014 at 4:54 pm |
        • joey3467

          Topher nothing short of you demonstrating with 100% certainty that the god of the bible is real is going to change my mind about it. Keep in mind that in order to do this you will have to prove it without a single mention of the bible. Only evidence that would hold up in a court of law, or in science will be considered.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:01 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          C'mon, dude. Don't run away. Answer the questions.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:07 pm |
        • joey3467

          I have never stolen anything.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:11 pm |
        • observer

          noahsdadtopher,

          Here's more questions for Joey:

          Have you ever supported slavery?
          Have you ever sold your young daughter to a stranger to be used as a slave?
          Do you think they should cut off the hand of your wife (or girlfriend) if she touches the genitals of a man ATTACKING you?

          July 10, 2014 at 5:12 pm |
        • joey3467

          I am just trying to point out that you are not going to change my mind by saying that the bible says that lying is a sin. I also don't believe in thought crimes so please don't ask me if I have murdered someone as I have not.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:13 pm |
        • joey3467

          In fact I find Christianity to be completely immoral as it is based on letting someone else take your punishment.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:14 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          Have you ever disrespected your parents by not doing what they told you to do? Disrespected them? Back-talked them? Didn't clean your room? Lie to them? Steal from them?

          July 10, 2014 at 5:15 pm |
        • joey3467

          topher, I realize that the bible says that all of these things are super bad, so what is your point? Sure I disrespected my parents from time to time, but once again I don't for one second believe that doing so makes someone a horrible person.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:16 pm |
        • observer

          noahsdadtopher,

          Keep at it. Maybe you sell Joey on MASOCHISM. See if you can make him feel guilty for using air.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:17 pm |
        • joey3467

          That is not going to happen, his questions just make me feel sorry for him.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:21 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          My point is that you're like the rest of us — NOT a good person. By your own admission you're a liar and have disrespected your parents. Which also means you've broken a few of the others. As you've probably figured out, we're looking at the 10 Commandments.

          The problem is the standard you're using. I'm sure that if you're comparing yourself to other men, you could be one of the nicest on the planet for all I know. The problem is that's the wrong standard. You should be comparing yourself to God whose standard is far above ours. His standard is perfection.

          So IF the God of the Bible is true, will you be innocent or guilty based on that standard?

          July 10, 2014 at 5:22 pm |
        • observer

          noahsdadtopher

          "His standard is perfection"

          Do you consider support for SLAVERY to be a "perfect standard"?
          Do you consider discrimination against women to be a "perfect standard"?
          Do you consider discrimination against the handicapped to be a "perfect standard"?
          Do you consider beating helpless children with a rod to be a "perfect standard"?

          July 10, 2014 at 5:27 pm |
        • joey3467

          Topher, this is where we will have to just disagree. I believe that you are just like the rest of us, that is by and large a good person. It is quite obvious that there are far more good people, or at least what I would describe as good people, in the world today than there are bad people. Also, I am not going to live my life based on an "if", however, if I thought god was real I don't think I would live my life very much differently other than maybe going to church on Sundays instead of playing golf.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:27 pm |
        • observer

          joey3467,

          I agree. I also feel very sorry for the constant guilt trip he is imposing on his poor kids. I'd bet that psychiatrists would be horrified.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:28 pm |
        • ausphor

          Joey

          Don't feel sorry for Topher he is pathetic. Just because he believes in his Baptist nonsense and can project that onto people that reject his belief system makes him a judgemental creep. Can you imagine what kind of theocracy his typr would create if they had the power, scary stuff.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:29 pm |
        • joey3467

          Topher, I don't believe in god, so why would I waste my time?

          July 10, 2014 at 5:30 pm |
        • joey3467

          Maybe where he lives everyone is horrible, I don't know. I do know, however, that where I live most of the folks are decent human beings who are willing to help one another whenever necessary.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:32 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          joey3467

          "Topher, I don't believe in god, so why would I waste my time?"

          You might find this offensive, so first let me apologize in advance, because that's not my intention. But I don't believe you don't believe in God. I think deep down in your conscience, there's a little voice screaming out to you that He DOES exist. And the Scriptures back that up. I know you reject that thought and Him. I get it. I used to, too. But my only hope for you is that you study up on the subject, understand what you are rejecting and then look into it even more. Dude, I don't know you and I care about you. I don't want you to go to Hell. There's no more important a question than where you'll spend eternity. And I'd ask you to please consider this before you let your head hit your pillow tonight. None of us are promised another day. Please don't put this off. Understand my motivations. I don't want your money and I can't invite you to church. It's only that I care for you.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:41 pm |
        • joey3467

          Topher I have spent most of my life in religious schools, and around religious friends and relatives. The bible is the main reason I am not a Christian. It is because I have read and studied it for over 20 years that I can say most of it is clearly nonsense. However, if you, or anyone else can prove that god is real without a single mention of the bible I will change my mind.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:44 pm |
        • ausphor

          Jesus, Topher, that sounds like the same pitch a priest uses to hit on an altar boy, I thought you couldn't abide catholics.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:46 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          joey3467

          "Topher I have spent most of my life in religious schools, and around religious friends and relatives."

          Doesn't matter. Religion won't help you.

          "However, if you, or anyone else can prove that god is real without a single mention of the bible I will change my mind."

          This is essentially an unfair request set up by atheists because you know it is exactly that because you are unwilling to submit to God.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:48 pm |
        • joey3467

          No, that is not true, I am willing to change my mind based on real actual evidence. The bible is the claim that god and Jesus are real, so show me some evidence to back up the claims of the bible. You, however, are unwilling to even consider that you might be wrong, and that is sad.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:51 pm |
        • joey3467

          And I like how you skipped over the part where I said I have read the bible and that is why I am not a Christian so that you can continue to believe that the only reason I don't believe in the god of the Bible is because I haven't studied it. The fact is I have, and I see no reason to believe that the god it describes is real.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:53 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          joey3467

          "No, that is not true, I am willing to change my mind based on real actual evidence."

          That's great news! Your heart isn't hardened. Look into the evidence. There's TONS of books, videos, articles online. Don't fall for the atheist claim that there is no evidence. Now perhaps you'll find that evidence lacking. That's up to you. I can't convince you and I can't prove God to you.

          Do you own a Bible? When was the last time you read it?

          "The bible is the claim that god and Jesus are real, so show me some evidence to back up the claims of the bible."

          Just curious. What kind of evidence would you find acceptable?

          "You, however, are unwilling to even consider that you might be wrong, and that is sad."

          I've already been down that road. I grew up rejecting God. I even spent a decade as a false convert before He saved me. And you'll find this whacky, I'm sure, but I won't consider I might be wrong because I'm convinced He's true. I've seen the evidence, not only in nature, but in my own life. I have a personal relationship with Him. He radically changed me several years ago. I'm not who I was.

          July 10, 2014 at 6:12 pm |
        • observer

          noahsdadtopher,

          Why should people answer your questions when you are SO AFRAID to answer questions about what you believe?

          July 10, 2014 at 6:15 pm |
      • joey3467

        Nothing but cult speak. II know plenty of good people, and nothing in the Bible is going to change that.

        July 10, 2014 at 3:28 pm |
      • Dalahäst

        Doesn't God, after finishing creating the physical world, including the human form, call it good? Not perfect, sure, but at least good?

        July 10, 2014 at 3:33 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          Yes. Before the fall. But because of sin, all of creation is corrupt. The Bible goes on to say that "“None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.”

          July 10, 2014 at 3:39 pm |
        • ausphor

          Topher I agree you and Dala are worthless sinners, good on you.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:20 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          Simul Justus Et Peccator.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:40 pm |
        • LaBella

          I don't believe that people are automatically bad by mere virtue of being born.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:22 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          You aren't bad because you are born. But because you have a sin nature, you WILL sin. Little children sin. Every been to a Chuck-E-Cheese's?

          July 10, 2014 at 4:32 pm |
        • LaBella

          Yes.
          This has nothing to do with my point that people are irredeemably bad because they were born.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:38 pm |
        • LaBella

          And I reject the notion that because one breathes, one will sin.
          Of course, if one thinks that everything one does is sinful, they will have fulfilled their self-imposed destiny.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:41 pm |
        • ausphor

          Topher's boys first word won't be mommy or daddy but sinner, poor kid.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:42 pm |
        • joey3467

          The idea that children would be punished by god for the sins of their ancestors is one of the most disgusting beliefs I have ever heard of.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:43 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          ausphor

          "Topher's boys first word won't be mommy or daddy but sinner, poor kid."

          Actually, we're trying to get it to be "propitiation."

          joey3467

          "The idea that children would be punished by god for the sins of their ancestors is one of the most disgusting beliefs I have ever heard of."

          I never said children will be punished for the sins of their ancestors.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:53 pm |
        • observer

          noahsdadtopher

          "I never said children will be punished for the sins of their ancestors."

          Fortunately, God changed his mind about that stuff.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:00 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          I think he is saying it is more like a consequence, not necessarily punishment.

          Like, if you chain smoke cigarettes and develop health complications from that. It is not God's punishment, but a consequence from how you were living.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:04 pm |
        • observer

          noahsdadtopher,

          Hopefully for the mental health of your children, you an not brain-washing them into your feeling of constant GUILT. Be aware of encouraging masochism.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:07 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          topher, What sin have you seen from children at ChuckECheese?

          July 10, 2014 at 5:08 pm |
        • joey3467

          Topher, do you believe that children are born sinners? If you say yes, then the only explanation, is that they are being punished for stuff that their ancestors did, as they couldn't have sinned before they were born.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:08 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          joey3467

          "Topher, do you believe that children are born sinners? If you say yes, then the only explanation, is that they are being punished for stuff that their ancestors did, as they couldn't have sinned before they were born."

          They are born with a sin nature. So they may or may not have sinned before they were born, but it won't take long. No one is ever punished for what someone else did. You will be held accountable for what you've done.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:17 pm |
        • joey3467

          may or may not have sinned before they were born? Please explain how someone could commit a sin without being born. Also, do you believe that death is a result of sin? If you do please explain what sins unborn babies who are lost through miscarriages may have committed before being born.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:23 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          joey3467

          Death is the result of sin, yes. Adam's sin corrupted all of creation, so we live in a fallen world. That's why other living creatures (animals) who don't sin also die. Babies who die before birth, as well as children who have not reached an age of accountability when they die, are given God's grace and go to heaven.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:32 pm |
        • joey3467

          Can you please show me the bible verse to support that, or are you just making that up because you realized that sending unborn babies to hell is a horrible thing to do.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:34 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          joey3467

          "Can you please show me the bible verse to support that, or are you just making that up because you realized that sending unborn babies to hell is a horrible thing to do."

          Not making it up. That's Christian theology. There's several verses to support it. The one that comes to mind (perhaps my Christian brothers and sisters here can help me recall some others) is 2 Sam. 12:22-23.

          Also, read or listen to this ... http://www.gty.org/resources/sermons/80-242/the-salvation-of-babies-who-die-part-1

          July 10, 2014 at 5:46 pm |
        • observer

          noahsdadtopher,

          Those were the words of David, NOT God or Jesus.

          July 10, 2014 at 5:49 pm |
        • LaBella

          I understood that the New Covenant broke the generational punishment of Adam, and each would be judged according to their own sin, and not the sin of their ancestors. Is this incorrect?

          July 10, 2014 at 6:00 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          LaBella

          "I understood that the New Covenant broke the generational punishment of Adam, and each would be judged according to their own sin, and not the sin of their ancestors. Is this incorrect?"

          Don't know what you mean by "generational punishment of Adam." We've all inherited our sin nature from Adam. But we'll be held accountable for the sins WE commit. So for instance, you won't be held accountable for something, say, your father did.

          July 10, 2014 at 6:06 pm |
        • LaBella

          The generational punishment of Adam's descendants. The curse of Adam's sin was lifted, and each is now accountable for one's own sins, instead of being cursed from birth by the stain of Adan's original sin.

          July 10, 2014 at 6:23 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          LaBella

          "The curse of Adam's sin was lifted,"

          No.

          "and each is now accountable for one's own sins,"

          This was true before the new covenant.

          July 10, 2014 at 6:26 pm |
        • LaBella

          Sorry, but just saying "no" without explains why I am wrong is rather unproductive.

          People are not born with Adam's original sin, otherwise you absolutely are paying for the sins of your ancestors. There is no getting around this.

          I didn't commit Adam's sin. Adam did.

          July 10, 2014 at 6:48 pm |
        • colin31714

          Following this thread is comical. Two grown adults arguing over the implications of Bronze Age mythology. Adam never existed; Eve never existed; original sin never existed. You sound like a couple of 8 year-olds arguing over who has the strongest Transformer.

          And then, just when Larry and Curly were deep into their "highly intellectual" debate, Mo (aka Dalahast) pipes in with:

          "I think he is saying it is more like a consequence, not necessarily punishment. Like, if you chain smoke cigarettes and develop health complications from that. It is not God's punishment, but a consequence from how you were living."

          Well, Mo, not if it is you God who sets up the rule, polices the rule and punishes transgressions. Your idiotic excuse for your god is like an excuse for a husband who abuses his wife and then claims "it's not my fault. I wouldn't hit her if the bi.tch would just shut up."

          Oh Christ you guys kill me. Grown adults debating this stuff. lol

          Dalahast, please don't take offense the next time I call your beliefs "childish." You have zero credibility.

          July 10, 2014 at 6:57 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          No worries. You have provided no credentials for yourself – which indicates you have zero credibility, too. That is probably why you write in message boards and comment sections- and never actual published pieces people with credentials are paid to write.

          My point is God doesn't merely set up rules and polices us – punishing us who fail to live up to his standards. That is not what I meant when I piped in. I was offering a different view. That we are responsible for what we do. Our actions have consequences. Notice I didn't say it was exactly like chain smoking.

          God is creating people who do the right thing not because they are following the law and trying to please an angry, vengeful God. Scripture makes clear there are certain actions we can take that have NO laws against them – and it is possible to live that way.

          July 10, 2014 at 7:19 pm |
        • colin31714

          Do you believe Adam and Eve actually existed?

          July 10, 2014 at 9:44 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          Do you know what Hebrew words for Adam and Eve are describing?

          July 11, 2014 at 11:58 am |
        • colin31714

          No. Now do you believe they existed as people or not?

          July 11, 2014 at 11:59 am |
        • Dalahäst

          Look into what the words used mean.

          July 11, 2014 at 12:01 pm |
        • colin31714

          Why don't you just answer the question?

          July 11, 2014 at 12:31 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          Hopefully not for the same reason you routinely don't answer my questions. I'm glad to see it bothers you when others do that to you.

          To me, the story is symbolic. It is difficult to imagine them as literal people involving a literal talking snake. It screams parable to me. I know God uses parables to reveal truths that human logic, human science and self-described reasonable people seem incapable of doing. The origin stories teach theology, not cosmology, geology or anthropology. Jesus nor his apostles used it for any other reason than to teach that. That is clear to me.

          July 11, 2014 at 12:41 pm |
        • colin31714

          I answer questions on topic, what I ignore are personal attacks dressed up as questions, such as "why do you act superior" or "why do you say you get a warm feeling because you feel smarter than others." I ignore them for the same reason I routinely ignore awanderingscott, salero21 and the like. It adds nothing too the debate.

          July 11, 2014 at 12:49 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          I've observed you dress up questions and statements as personal attacks quite often yourself. I've observed you add fuel to a fire that does nothing to foster a mature and sophisticated dialogue. And this is an opinion blog, not a debate forum.

          July 11, 2014 at 12:57 pm |
        • noahsdadtopher

          LaBella

          "Sorry, but just saying "no" without explains why I am wrong is rather unproductive."

          Sorry. I'm not trying to be difficult.

          "People are not born with Adam's original sin, otherwise you absolutely are paying for the sins of your ancestors. There is no getting around this."

          You inherit sin nature because Adam was our "federal head." You don't have Adam's sin. And you won't be punished for Adam's sin. But you do have a proclivity to sin because of what He did. So because He sinned, you will, too. But you aren't going to be punished for his sin. You will be punished for yours.

          "I didn't commit Adam's sin. Adam did."

          True. And like I said, you won't be punished for what the first Adam did. I don't know you, but I think it's fair to say you've broken some of God's laws. You'd be guilty. And lucky for us the Last Adam didn't sin and gave Himself up to take the punishment we all deserve so that not only will we be seen as innocent, but we are imputed with Christ's righteousness. So it's as if we lived Christ's life and He lived ours. How cool is that?!

          July 10, 2014 at 6:58 pm |
        • LaBella

          Then I was not born with the stain of original sin, as I said all along.
          I'm glad we agree.

          July 10, 2014 at 8:39 pm |
        • tallulah131

          This conversation simply reinforces my opinion that christianity is a sick, manipulative religion. I feel terrible for children born to the likes of Dala and Topher. They will probably spend their lives trying to develop the sense of self-worth and confidence that will allow them to succeed in the modern world. Either that, or they will rebel completely and become the sort of atheist that their parents revile.

          July 11, 2014 at 12:57 pm |
        • Dalahäst

          I was raised by agnostic atheists. Maybe I'm rebelling against their superior, sick and smug ways?

          There is nobody manipulating me from a religion. Nor am I doing that to somebody else. I would not tolerate that.

          There is nothing sick about taking a vow of poverty to help those in need. To give what little you might have to someone who has nothing. To stand up to evil and refuse to take a part in its game.

          You can speculate about Topher and I, and jump to whatever conclusion works best for you. But that is just your opinion. You offer nothing better.

          July 11, 2014 at 1:04 pm |
      • joey3467

        Obverver, if god is the standard for goodness and perfection, then I have a lot of people I need to kill.

        July 10, 2014 at 5:28 pm |
      • thesamyaza

        Jee i thought i was a misanthrope the Goat beards that wrote the bible, take it to a knew level.

        July 10, 2014 at 9:59 pm |
    • bostontola

      Dalahast,
      I'm pretty close to you on that. Love of one's enemy is the deepest form of forgiveness and forgiveness does free one. There are practical aspects like the enemy tolerating you, but if you can achieve that it's liberating. There's a lot of wisdom in the teachings of Jesus that I try to live by.

      July 10, 2014 at 3:22 pm |
      • Dalahäst

        Right. The alternative – resentment, bitterness, plotting revenge, to me, leads to my own suffering. I like the quote that says holding onto resentment is like eating rat poison and waiting for the rat to die.

        July 10, 2014 at 3:35 pm |
        • bostontola

          I completely agree .

          July 10, 2014 at 3:43 pm |
  17. Alias

    The ignorance of the posters here continues to amaze me.
    I'm not referring to the religious discussions, but to the historical facts about Israel and the ongoing conflicts with the refugees they displaced after World War II.

    July 10, 2014 at 12:29 pm |
    • awanderingscot

      not ignorance at all, you just don't have the capacity to look at the big picture.

      July 10, 2014 at 12:51 pm |
      • Alias

        How does your ignorance keep me from seeing the big picture?
        I think knowing the whole story makes the big picture more clear.

        July 10, 2014 at 12:54 pm |
        • awanderingscot

          you don't know the whole story, that's the point. don't pretend you do.

          July 10, 2014 at 1:02 pm |
        • Alias

          On the last page you referred to 'Palestine'.
          Please enlighten me as to when and where this country existed.

          July 10, 2014 at 1:26 pm |
        • awanderingscot

          it you'll remember correctly (go back and look); the context was in relationship to Canaan. Yes Palestine is recognized as a country (the 3 separate territories)

          July 10, 2014 at 2:00 pm |
        • awanderingscot

          Palestine as a sovereign country arose out of the 1995 Oslo accords.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:01 pm |
        • LaBella

          Jerusalem is its capital, right?

          July 10, 2014 at 2:10 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          Palestine is a geographical area where many people groups and nations reside. It's like North America, South America, etc. I guess you could technically call the people who live in the region Palestinians, but to say that they need their own country is a bit redundant.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:53 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          (Biblically speaking by the way...)

          July 10, 2014 at 2:55 pm |
        • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

          "Palestine is a geographical area where many people groups and nations reside. "
          -----------–
          It means much more than that to people who call themselves Palestinians.

          Canadians do not self-identify as Americans, though they clearly live in North America.

          July 10, 2014 at 3:46 pm |
        • Alias

          The 'problem that needs to be solved' is that when the jews were given their land in the 1940's they displaced a large group of peple, now the residents of Palestine. The residents of Palestine want their land and houses back.
          The Israilies are treating the Palistinians in ways that would make Hitler proud, and the USA uses its Veto to kee p the UN from doing anything.

          July 10, 2014 at 4:14 pm |
    • Reality

      The big picture to solve the current situation:

      Israel- Its formation was approved by the UN in 1948. It should honor the original UN agreement and live within the described borders. Considering the hate generated by passages in the Koran and OT, continuing the dividing wall building between Muslims and Jews is highly recommended. UN forces should control these walls.

      And Jerusalem should be made into an international city under the control and protection of the UN.

      The permanent solution?

      There was no Abraham or Moses thereby destroying the foundations of the religions involved in this idiotic conflict. Details previously presented.

      July 10, 2014 at 3:02 pm |
      • awanderingscot

        no, you cannot dictate to people what they can and cannot believe. remember?

        July 10, 2014 at 4:22 pm |
        • Reality

          But you can give the educational materials to make the correct decisions. BTW, have you completed perusing the references regarding the historical Jesus?

          July 10, 2014 at 5:16 pm |
        • colin31714

          Well, how do you explain the first commandment?

          July 10, 2014 at 7:03 pm |
  18. bostontola

    A selection of statements on this blog by young earth creationists in just the last few days:
    Nope..no evidence whatsoever
    NOT proven that those you mentioed ARE in FACTtransitional!in
    NO tranistional forms available..period..uyour argument has no merit
    NO evidence whatsoever for macro evolution.
    thatsa theory that has not been proven
    a very small subatomic particle called NEUTRINOS have rendered radiometric dating useless
    radiometric dating. it is an unreliable hoax.
    Do a google search on "The Distant Starlight Problem." There are several possibilities

    They reveal a stunning lack of critical thinking skills.
    1. For anything that conflicts with their world view they require proof.
    2. For things that support their world view they accept the most speculative, unsubstantiated ideas (see the explanations for the Starlight Problem, or the proven false Neutrino Problem).
    3. Many don't distinguish evidence from proof.
    4. Some don't distinguish error from hoax.
    5. Some don't understand the difference between a hypothesis and a scientific theory.
    6. Many don't understand that scientific theories aren't proven, they are supported by objective, validated evidence.

    On a spectrum of confidence in knowledge from 0 to 100, 0 representing no confidence (a preposterous claim), and 100 representing an objective fact accepted by essentially all healthy people, Evolution is a well established scientific fact. It has a very good theory whose elements have been extensively tested and validated. It is incomplete, we learn more details every day that add detail to the theory. No objective evidence has been found in over a century that refutes evolution. That would put evolution at over a 99. The dating methods and the physics used to establish the earth is 4.5B years old are well over 99 as well.

    On the same scale, the Neutrino Problem is less than 1, and the Distant Starlight Problem explanations are less than 1.

    No critical thinker would allow themselves to use arguments based on 1s to refute 99s. Proof is irrelevant in this discussion. None of the elements of this debate is proven. This is about objective validated evidence (or lack thereof).

    July 10, 2014 at 11:25 am |
    • midwest rail

      You omitted my favorite :
      " a) Dinosaurs and humans lived on earth at the same time"

      July 10, 2014 at 1:21 pm |
      • Doris

        "There are people who believe that humans and dinosaurs co-existed, that they roamed the Earth at the same time. There are museums that children go to, in which they build dioramas to show them this. And what this is, purely and simply, is a clinical psychotic reaction. They are crazy. They are stone-cold-f!@%! nuts. I can't be kind about this, because these people are watching The Flinstones as if it were a docu.mentary." –Lewis Black

        July 10, 2014 at 1:24 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          I guess seeing atheists quoting comedians as if what they say is authoritative shouldn't suprise me... After all, many have quoted Stephen Hawking who believes that aliens started life on this planet...

          July 10, 2014 at 1:35 pm |
        • lunchbreaker

          I don't suppose it's possible a comedian was quoted to be funny, maybe not to you Theo.Simply posting something does not mean you are claiming them as an authoritatvie source. I remember you quoting that ridiculous satire of athiestic beliefs. Am I to assume you believe a satiracal poet is an authoritative source?

          July 10, 2014 at 1:56 pm |
        • Doris

          It takes a comedic outlook to even attempt to consider what young-earth creationists purport as serious.

          July 10, 2014 at 1:59 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          Generally people give quotations because they feel that "so-and-so said it better than I could."

          Of course, people also post quotes in an attempt to be snarky. But either through the quoted satire, or through what they may recognize as a truism, there is always a reflection of the one posting. Having heard Doris' opinions before, I draw the conclusion (maybe incorrectly so) that she has posted this from Mr. Black because she agrees with him.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:03 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          I think Doris' post was meant to show just how laughable creationism is. Really. You just have to laugh at anyone who can take this tripe seriously.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:14 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          Many who believe in evolution actually have a lot in common with many who call themselves Christians. They believe what they do merely on the basis of being told what to believe by someone else. They "swallow the hook" if you will when that belief coincides with their current worldview.

          One thing I have learned over my years of study, and that is that you must never let someone else do your thinking for you – don't believe something just because someone tells you to. INVESTIGATE IT... Dig deep into what is commonly called "truth." For truth is not in the eye of the beholder, truth just is, and it is FOUND, and REVEALED, not CREATED.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:16 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          Theo, Do you have a link to Hawking saying that life on Earth formed elsewhere in the universe?

          July 10, 2014 at 2:17 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          You just have to laugh at anyone who can take this tripe seriously.
          ------------
          Is it any funnier to you than to think that life can come from merely the proper mix of the right chemicals?

          I can splat a mosquito on my arm, and there in that warm pond of ooze lies all of the necessary chemicals for life. But is life going to come out of that? Certainly not. Abiogenesis is about as far from real science as one can get, and yet the die-hard naturalist is forced to conclude that it is possible from that splatted mosquito that life can emerge.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:21 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          and that comment just shows how ignorant you really are about what science says. You need to get outside your cult bubble and stop reading your cult propaganda.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:24 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          Theo,
          "Many who believe in evolution actually have a lot in common with many who call themselves Christians. They believe what they do merely on the basis of being told what to believe by someone else. "

          That is not a valid comparison – evolution has been tested in many ways by many people. One could reproduce those tests if one wanted to pursue the education, devote the time and expense.
          Presumably you accept that DNA testing can identify an individual and their family tree – just one of the many proofs that evolution is a fact.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:24 pm |
        • kudlak

          Theo Phileo
          I know that Hawking talked about panspermia, the idea that microbic life could travel to different worlds vis astroids, whose impact could shoot off other rocks containing life into space, and so on. All you would need then is life to have developed somewhere in the galaxy at some time, with it eventually spreading here.

          Looking at it from a more direct meaning, all we need imagine is some microbes clinging to one of our Mars rovers and taking hold on that planet to qualify as our "alien seeding" of another planet, which is hardly something that anyone would call "impossible", correct?

          July 10, 2014 at 2:25 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          and that comment just shows how ignorant you really are about what science says
          --------------–
          Fine. I've never claimed to be an expert, please explain to me then how "Abiogenesis" is supposed to work.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:26 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          @theo

          there may or may not be some force that created the universe ... we haven't figured that out yet ... but it is not this god of bronze age foolishness that is so concerned with what people do while na.ked and so concerned that we praise him all day long and tell him how wonderful he is and so concerned with suppressing science and so concerned with meting out punishment and so concerned with inanities like what you can eat and what days you can work on and what cloth you wear and who you can marry.

          And yet Christians use that creation thing as an escape hatch. They preach all this bronze age foolishness and judge, judge, judge people based on their story book but as soon as it is shown to be scientifically and historically flawed foolishness they panic and dodge and throw out "then who created the universe?" as if that has anything to do with 99% of their infantile fairy story book.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:26 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          Theo,
          "Abiogenesis is about as far from real science as one can get, and yet the die-hard naturalist is forced to conclude that it is possible from that splatted mosquito that life can emerge."

          Wilfull ignorance can be fixed – you just need to let your superstitions go.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:27 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          One could reproduce those tests if one wanted to pursue the education, devote the time and expense.
          --------------
          You can reproduce a fish growing lungs???

          July 10, 2014 at 2:27 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          @theo

          as per your request:

          The theory most scientists currently favor for the origins of life is called “abiogenesis,” the gradual emergence of life on Earth from non-living matter. To understand why it is thought that life arose on Earth from non-living matter, one has to understand some basic biochemistry. This is where you “talking snake crowd” have such a problem. You have to actually understand some very basic science, you can’t just rely on what you were taught at Sunday school as an eight year-old.

          All life is comprised of complex arrangements of proteins, fats and carbohydrates, all orchestrated by DNA and/or RNA. DNA/RNA and proteins are by far the most important components of a living organism, carrying out virtually every function in a cell. Fats and carbohydrates are generally simpler molecules and play critical, but subordinate roles in cells.

          DNA and RNA are made of five nucleotides – adenine, thymine, cytosine, guanine and uracil. They act as the cell’s “mission control,” orchestrating the cell’s activities. Proteins are made of 20 amino acids. They are the workhorse of the cell – the nails, wood, steel beams and machinery that make the cell run. It is the order of amino acids in a protein that determine its shape and, therefore what it does. This order and shape of proteins is itself dictated by the DNA through RNA.

          So, in short, life is made up of complex arrangements of:

          The five nucleotides – adenine, thymine, cytosine, guanine and uracil – arranged into DNA and/or RNA
          The twenty amino acids – that form all proteins, including enzymes and the other 100,000 or so proteins in a complex organism’s body.
          Carbohydrates – literally “water-carbon,” which include sugars and starches. These are much simpler elements than proteins or DNA/RNA and act as an energy source.
          Fats – also called lipids, these are important in constructing cell membranes.

          The simplest cells are prokaryotic cells. They exist today principally as bacteria. Stromatolites and other fossils from all over the planet suggest that, for the first billion years of life on earth, all life was simple, prokaryotic life. These cells consisted of a fatty cell membrane, like a balloon skin, with DNA/RNA, proteins, fats and carbohydrates on the inside. They had no nucleus. Cells with nuclei, called eukaryotic cells (which make up virtually all multi-cellular organisms) are much larger and more complex that prokaryotic cells and likely resulted from the early combining of prokaryotic cells.

          So, can a simple prokaryotic cell come into existence without the intervention of God, Allah, Shiva, Vishnu, Yahweh or any other divine/magic being?

          Beginning in the 1950s, scientists started trying to mimic the conditions on the early Earth to see whether some kind of “life-fairy” was necessary to get things started. In the most famous experiment of this era, the Miller-Urey experiment of 1952, Stanley Miller demonstrated that heating and running an electric spark through an atmosphere of water vapor, ammonia, methane and hydrogen for a few weeks resulted in these very simple molecules self-assembling into all 20 of the amino acids upon which life on Earth is based. This is a startling result. All 20 building blocks of proteins, which comprise over 99% of the cell’s functional structures, self-assembling without a magic wand from God, Shiva, Vishnu, Allah etc!

          The experiment was groundbreaking because it suggested that, under the perfectly natural conditions of early Earth, the building blocks of life can and will self-assemble. Indeed, it now seems that major volcanic eruptions 4 billion years ago would have created an even more diverse atmosphere than Miller used, including carbon dioxide (CO2), nitrogen (N2), hydrogen sulfide (H2S), and sulfur dioxide (SO2). When these were added to the mix in subsequent experiments, they have resulted in the creation of all 5 nucleotides, all 20 amino acids and basic fatty membranes and various carbohydrates. That is to say, with no magic/divine intervention, all life’s building blocks WILL self-assemble.

          But nails, wood, wiring and bricks a house do not make. Even the simplest life requires these building blocks to be arranged in very, very complex ways. In various experiments with various conditions, scientists have been able to create a wide range of cell-like structures of increasing complexity on the road toward a simple self-replicating organism. These creations are called protobionts or coacervates and if you “you tube” or google these terms, you will see many examples.

          This is still a far cry from a cell, but the important thing is that the experiments uniformly demonstrate that organic molecules have a natural tendency to clump together in increasingly complex ways under early Earth-like conditions. They are not being pushed into doing something “against their will”.

          Where it gets really suggestive is that scientists have been able to isolate what they believe to be some of the most primitive genes of Earth, by comparing the DNA of two organisms whose last common ancestor lived soon after the formation of the Earth. For such genes to be common to both such organisms, they must be very, very old. When these ancient genes produce amino acids, they are rich in the amino acids most common in the Miller-Urey and similar experiments! This suggests that these experiments do indeed reflect early Earth conditions and that life itself did arise under such conditions.

          The other important factor is that these impressive results have been achieved in laboratories over small periods of time. Imagine the whole Earth as the “Petri dish” and hundreds of millions of years as the timescale. Simple life gradually emerging from such a “soup” does not seem at all incredible, certainly not incredible enough that we in the USA have to give up and call the remaining gap in knowledge “God,” while our Indian colleagues do the same and attribute it all to the Lord Shiva.

          Scientist are also approaching it from the other side too, gradually stripping away at prokaryotic cells to see how stripped down they have to become for life to “stop,” while others continue to build up from coacervates and protobionts. The gap is narrowing as our knowledge continues its inexorable march.

          The Christian sky-fairy is being pinched out! There’s not a lot of room left for him now. The pincers of science are closing in from both sides, squeezing out the phantom of religion and ignorance. Soon, the two sides of the pincer will meet and this unnecessary holdover will have to flutter off and find another dark corner to settle in, where the penetrating light of science and knowledge has not yet shone. Fortunately, the weak, forgiving mind of the believer will always be there for him, acting as an eternal refuge from enlightenment and advancement.

          (thanks to Colin)

          July 10, 2014 at 2:32 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          which is hardly something that anyone would call "impossible", correct?
          ------------–
          The problem is that Hawking is using his imagination to create a position that involves something that has never been observed to be – namely, life outside of our planet.

          At least Christians at the very least can point to the life of Christ as evidence to what they believe.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:33 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          @theo

          "At least Christians at the very least can point to the life of Christ as evidence to what they believe."

          there is some evidence that a man named jesus lived and was crucified around 2,000 years ago. Anything else ever written about your storybook character jesus was written by people in the same deluded cult as you are. Hence, it cannot be called evidence and is not the truth! As your endless dodging and lying and twisting in this forum plainly show, people in your cult will say anything, no matter how far fetched, to support this cult's belief.

          Your "testimony of eye witnesses" that you always speak of came 40 – 75+ years after the events were supposed to have taken place and it's your cult members who write it that way in an attempt at credibility. And only the 'eye witnesses' (LOLOL) in your cult who made up stories to back the lies had their words included. All others were left out.

          It was only ever your cult members who have determined these fairy stories "reliable through mountains of scholarly literature written over the past two thousand years". Biased much?

          It's a FRAUD and only your gullibility makes it real.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:37 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          Theo, Of course one could not be sure the same evolutionary path would be taken. We can trace DNA back, transitional fossils, experiment with animals, E. coli, etc. We can make a prediction and see if the available evidence confirms or rejects the prediction; evolution passes that test, creationism does not.
          You seem to think that a fish decides to live on land and so grows lungs – no, it's a gradual adaption, either it lived near the shore and could tolerate a short time out of water or had a flotation device and adapted that, or some other scenario.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:38 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          Theo,
          Even if Jesus were a real person, there is no evidence of his divinity, no evidence of a god, no evidence of your god, and very little to support most bible stories.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:40 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          Even if Jesus were a real person, there is no evidence of his divinity, no evidence of a god, no evidence of your god, and very little to support most bible stories.
          ------------------
          Actually, Dr. James White has a LOT of videos on youtube that prove that Jesus was God. Great stuff to help as an introduction to the topic. Much more enlightening than Dyslexc Dog's explanations of how men HAVE NOT created life from non-life in the lab.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:44 pm |
        • In Santa We Trust

          Theo,
          Oh an apologist says Jesus was a god. Must be true then. Who needs evidence.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:52 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          and Dr. James White is a member of your cult so I trust his magical fairy tale explanations about as much as I trust Joseph Smith or L. Ron Hubbard or crazy Ken Ham!

          July 10, 2014 at 2:52 pm |
        • kudlak

          Theo Phileo
          What if the "life of Christ" is just something created out of human imagination too? You didn't observe the story unfolding, so you cannot be certain that it's actually true, correct?

          What Hawking has is a viable hypothesis based on experimentation with microbes surviving exposure to space, and evidence that they are in meteorites. That's a whole lot more than you've got to support your idea.

          July 11, 2014 at 1:25 pm |
      • Theo Phileo

        Well, they were created on the same day as man, and before the word "dinosaur" was created in the 19th century, they were referred to by another word: "animals."

        These animals can be found in Genesis, repeated in Job, eye witness accounts found twice in Job, twice in Psalms, and once in Isaiah.

        Naturalistic materialism rules the day in academia. That is, anything that does not presuppose an uncreated universe that can be explained solely on the basis of naturalism is rejected a-priori, and any Christian claims are relegated to the arena of “myth.” This is because most people today rely completely on science to determine truth. That is, truth is determined only by what can be empirically observed…

        “Only those things which can be objectively and empirically verified are true.”
        NOTE: This statement cannot be objectively or empirically verified as being true…

        July 10, 2014 at 1:33 pm |
        • midwest rail

          The all time champion of presuppositions and a priori conclusions can be found in the mission statement of A.I.G.

          July 10, 2014 at 1:43 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          and here's even more comedy for you:

          Your book that is supposed to be the word of your omnipotent god has 2 CONTRADICTORY versions of how it all happened!!! LOLOLOL

          Were humans created before or after the other animals?

          After the other animals
          Genesis 1:25-27 And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and the cattle after their kind ... And God said, Let us make man ... So God created man in his own image.

          Before the other animals
          Genesis 2:18-19 And the Lord God said it is not good that man should be alone; I will make a help-meet for him. And out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air, and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:20 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          Dyslexic Dog,
          Your misunderstanding of the Biblical text doesn't make a contradiction...
          Genesis 1 and 2 do not disagree with one another as to the order in which things were created and do not contradict. Genesis 1 describes the “six days of creation” (and a seventh day of rest), Genesis 2 covers only one day of that creation week—the sixth day—so that more detail may be added for the reader.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:24 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          denial is not just a river in Egypt ...

          your explanation does nothing to change the fact that Genesis 1:25-27 and Genesis 2:18-19 are clearly contradictory.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:29 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          your explanation does nothing to change the fact that Genesis 1:25-27 and Genesis 2:18-19 are clearly contradictory.
          ------------
          Actually, it just inihilated it.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:34 pm |
        • kudlak

          Theo Phileo
          Why would you assume that these biblical "animals" were dinosaurs?

          Christian ideas are relegated to the arena of “myth” because they are basically indistinguishable from what is generally called myth, right? There are hundreds of traditional creation stories that also call upon magical beings and gods to explain how the universe began. What would be the basis for academia making the exception for Christian beliefs: present popularity?

          Lots of things could possibly exist beyond what can be empirically observed. Only the human imagination is the limit. Do you really want to lump God in amongst them?

          “Only those things which can be objectively and empirically verified are true.”
          The key here word is "verified". God could still be real, only it hasn't been empirically verified that he is. That's where religious faith comes in, right?

          July 10, 2014 at 2:37 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          Genesis 1:25-27 And God made the beast of the earth after his kind, and the cattle after their kind ... And God said, Let us
          make man ... So God created man in his own image.

          so that's clearly god creating the animals first and man later ...

          Genesis 2:18-19 And the Lord God said it is not good that man should be alone; I will make a help-meet for him. And out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air, and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them.

          so that's clearly god creating man first and the animals later ...

          do I need to spell it out any more for you? How is that not contradictory?

          July 10, 2014 at 2:43 pm |
        • Science Works

          Well theo please check it out for the children. Thanks.

          Climate Science Students Bill of Rights
          ALL KIDS DESERVE THE BEST CLIMATE SCIENCE EDUCATION AVAILABLE.

          http://ncse.com/taking-action/climate-bill-rights

          July 10, 2014 at 2:45 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          It's not a contradiction because you're trying to proof text. Read the entire chapter 2 instead of quoting from atheists websites (who know nothing of scripture) and you'll understand it.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:50 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          dodge, dodge, slide, slide, deny, deny, lie, lie, flee .....

          July 10, 2014 at 2:54 pm |
        • Theo Phileo

          dodge, dodge, slide, slide, deny, deny, lie, lie, flee .....
          ---------------
          No, you just don't want to read the text, so you act like a child and refuse to look and give an intelligent response.

          July 10, 2014 at 2:57 pm |
        • Dyslexic doG

          yep. I just read it again. Just for you. And it is definitely contradictory. And it is definitely written by primitive, scientifically ignorant men. And it is almost cute in it's childlike view of the world. Just like santa claus and the easter bunny and the tooth fairy and snow white and hansel and Gretel and any one of the others.

          Now I feel even more sorry for you than I did before.

          July 10, 2014 at 3:18 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      I'm at a loss as to how 'an eye for an eye' leads us back to young earth creationism.

      July 10, 2014 at 2:35 pm |
      • joey3467

        Um, because people like Topher think that eyes are proof that evolution couldn't happen?

        July 10, 2014 at 3:26 pm |
  19. Dyslexic doG

    Christians base their whole belief on the writings of bronze age and iron age man that claim to be the word of a god or at least inspired by a god. WELL OF COURSE they claimed that! What better way for power hungry men to further their cause than to claim that their rules and their stories come from a god?

    The claim was a simple thing to do in ancient times because scientifically ignorant people still did not know why the sun rose and set and why the seasons changed and why lightning and why thunder and why earthquakes and why disease and why just about anything ... so people all thought that a god or gods controlled it all. Power hungry men co-opted these imaginary, powerful gods and used that belief of the ignorant masses to further their power. In any battle throughout history, the leaders of BOTH sides convinced all their men that god was on THEIR side and that the other side were evil. Same old con game.

    So, amazingly, that's the basis of it all! Stories written by men for their own selfish gain. And so the evidence that Christians continue to present as 'proof' of their god is either the earliest fragments of these same man-written stories (proving nothing other than that someone wrote the stories down!), or the later musings and writings of other people in their cult who spent their lives studying the original flawed writings.

    In the end, all you have is men saying that their book is the word of their god because it says so in their book.

    There is no physical proof of burning bushes or stone tablets or exoduses or floods or arks or miracles or resurrections. There are only (often contradictory) stories making magical, fanciful claims that were written down long after supposed events took place, by people in your cult who are obviously biased and have ulterior motives. And THEN, these stories have been translated over and over by more people in your cult who are similarly biased and have ulterior motives. It's all just so massively, irreparably flawed!

    July 10, 2014 at 11:18 am |
    • colin31714

      thanks for finding and re-posting the little snippet I wrote about abiogenesis. I had totally forgotten about it.

      July 11, 2014 at 12:04 pm |
  20. haime52

    I'll admit to not reading all 700+ comments and just jump in. The "eye for an eye" scenario is presumptive of a judgment council of elders or in today's vernacular, a court, that assesses guilt or innocence of the alleged perpetrator. Not jungle or mob justice. Just as most governments do, today. One of the reasons for the need of cities of refuge and judges, was that "every man did what was right in his own eyes."

    July 9, 2014 at 10:10 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.