Secularism grows as more U.S. Christians turn ‘churchless’

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(RNS) Increasing numbers of Americans are tuning out to religion, spirituality and a search for meaning -- and not feeling at guilty about it. RNS file photo by Emily Zoladz/The Grand Rapids Press.

(RNS) Increasing numbers of Americans are tuning out to religion, spirituality and a search for meaning -- and not feeling at guilty about it. RNS file photo by Emily Zoladz/The Grand Rapids Press.

"Unchurched Adults Are More Likely To Be...," graphic courtesy of Barna Group.

“Unchurched Adults Are More Likely To Be…,” graphic courtesy of Barna Group.

(RNS) If you’re dismayed that one in five Americans (20 percent) are “nones” — people who claim no particular religious identity — brace yourself.

How does 38 percent sound?

That’s what religion researcher David Kinnaman calculates when he adds “the unchurched, the never-churched and the skeptics” to the nones.

He calls his new category “churchless,” the same title Kinnaman has given his new book. By his count, roughly four in 10 people living in the continental United States are actually “post-Christian” and “essentially secular in belief and practice.”

If asked, the “churchless” would likely check the “Christian” box on a survey, even though they may not have darkened the door of a church in years.

Kinnaman, president of the California-based Barna Group, slides them into this new category based on 15 measures of identity, belief and practice in more than 23,000 interviews in 20 surveys.

The research looked at church worship attendance and participation, views about the Bible, God and Jesus, and more to see whether folks were actually tied to Christian life in a meaningful way or tied more by habit or personal history.

Ed Stetzer, president of LifeWay Research, once called nominals — people attached by name only — “survey Christians.” They don’t want to cut ties with their parents or go all the way to atheism, Stetzer said, “so they just say ‘Christian’ since it is the default category from their heritage.”

Kinnaman now has the numbers to back that up.

“We are far from becoming an atheist nation,” he said. “There are tens of millions of active believers in America today. But the wall between the churched and the churchless is growing higher and more impenetrable as more people have no muscle memory of what it means to be a regular attender at a house of worship.”

How these people think, pray and use their time is shifting away from a faith-based perspective. As a result, a churchless or secular worldview “is becoming its own social force.”

When political scientists burrow into election results, they may find that church attendance is less and less useful for predicting or evaluating political social and cultural attitudes. If you are not around people of strong belief, there’s not a lot of spillover impact. 

Stephen Mockabee, an associate professor of political science at University of Cincinnati, has compared church attendance to medication: “It’s not only the drug but also the dose that matters.”

The churchless come in several tribes, according to Kinnaman. 

About a third (32 percent) still identify as Christian. They say they believe in God but they’re wobbly on connections. Kinnaman calls them “Christianized but not very active.”

That might include Katie West of Mount Sterling, Ky., or Mike Wilson of Webster City, Iowa.

West keeps the Christian label because, she said, “I follow or at least try to follow the teachings of Christ.” She avoids religious services “unless roped into a wedding or funeral,” but considers herself “a spiritual person without looking at a Bible.”

Wilson is the paid webmaster for a Lutheran church but he can’t recall the last time he attended a worship service or read the Bible. He checks the Christian box if asked in a survey, even though he resonates more with Buddhist and other Eastern philosophies.

“Religion is the starting point to enlightenment, but at some point you have to take that leap of faith and make your personal relationship with God exactly that — personal,” Wilson said. “So if you can find a religion that encompasses that better than Christianity, I will call myself that.”

Other “tribes” among the churchless include:

  • 25 percent are self-identified atheist or agnostics. Kinnaman calls them “skeptics.” And their ranks have changed in the last two decades. The percentage of women is up to 43 percent from 16 percent since 1993. Highly educated and more mainstream than before, “this group is here to stay,” he said.
  • 27 percent belong to other faith groups such as Jewish or Muslim or call themselves spiritual but not religious.
  • 16 percent are Christians — people with a committed relationship with Christ, Kinnaman said — who don’t go to church anymore.

Kinnaman predicts no change in direction. He concluded: “The younger the generation, the more post-Christian it is”:

  • Millennials (born between 1984 and 2002) — 48 percent
  • Gen X-ers (born between 1965 and 1983) — 40 percent
  • Boomers (born between 1946 and 1964) — 35 percent
  • Elders (born in 1945 or earlier) — 28 percent

Karen King, 52, a dispatch scheduler for a local transit agency in Mount Vernon, Wash., knows her state is among the least churched in the nation. Yet among the secular crowds, there are plenty of churchgoers.

“I know because I schedule people to get to churches through Dial-A-Ride. There must be 40 or 50 churches between Mount Vernon and nearby Burlington.”

And King goes to none of them.

The granddaughter of a Presbyterian pastor, King says she hasn’t been to church for a worship service in more than 30 years. Her daughter, a millennial and a pagan, doesn’t go either.

Although King still thinks of herself as a Christian, she has stepped back from denominational brands. Instead, she says, she just tries to show love.

“I do random acts of kindness. I talk to God when I think I need to. I think I have a good connection to Mother God and Father God.“


  • Greg

    I’m not “dismayed” at all. I’m darn happy that fewer and fewer people are accepting religious delusions. With religion pushing the denial of equal rights for gay people, the denial of equal rights for women, the denial of climate change, the denial of evolution and the denial of science and reality in general, all combined with the ultimate passive aggressive attitude of “I’m right because my god says so” there simply is no positive side to religion any more. There is no charitable cause or social benefit from religion which cannot also occur in a non-religious society. It’s time to leave our bronze age delusions behind us.

  • Fourth Valley

    These stats seem… wrong to me. He’s grouping a large number of religions into this category he describes as “Post-Christian”. For my own religion, or Islam, or Sikhism, I guess that makes sense to be labeled “post-Christian” as such faiths were born after Christianity.

    But religious Jews as “post”-Christian?? Zoroastrians?? Hindus?? Buddhists?? Taoists?? Midew?? Its hard to see how the practitioners of many older-than-Christianity faiths can be called “post-Christian”.

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  • Thecla

    I AM dismayed by the figures—and by the assumption that is, arguably, responsible for those figures that religion is essentially doctrinal and that all it’s good for is to promote good works.

    Religion is a cultural good, embodied in sacred spaces and ceremonies, that maintains the stories, symbols, and celebrations of our culture, and produces art. Everyone, regardless of their religious beliefs can enjoy those cultural artifacts. These goods can’t be maintained without participation and financial support. As religion dies churches close, ceremonies and celebrations die out, stories are forgotten and religious art is relegated to museums and concert halls. That is a dead loss!

    What matters is maintaining the buildings, ceremonies and myths for all to enjoy. It’s those outward things are the core of religion, and what’s valuable about it. That’s being lost, and it makes for a world with less color, less romance, less aesthetic pleasure—a duller world, a thinner culture, and everyone loses, regardless of their beliefs.

    Churches and ceremonies aren’t an expression of religious conviction for believers only—they’re a valuable cultural amenity for everyone and a source of pleasure.

  • @Thecla,

    “it makes for a world with less color, less romance, less aesthetic pleasure—a duller world, a thinner culture, and everyone loses, regardless of their beliefs.”

    Not true at all. The Dark Ages alone are proof that religion is a disaster to humanity – not a help.
    Where religion ends philosophy and science begin.
    It does not make a garden more beautiful to claim “fairies did it.”

    The photos from the Hubble Space Telescope, incredible advances in medical treatments, the expansion of entire libraries of books onto the internet are far more inspiring and exciting than a story about Jesus killing a fig tree!

    Just as the radio DJs lost their jobs as music fragmented, Priests are losing their jobs as religion breaks apart.

    Without fear and obedience to keep it going, religion simply dies.
    And humanity thrives.
    The people who don’t adapt to religion’s end are those who have never learned to think for themselves. They are the most frightened of this change.

    But they should take heart in the fact that non-religious communities are far more peaceful places to live.
    And if they love holiday gatherings they will enjoy a Saturnalia just as much as they ever enjoyed a Christmas party.

    If God isn’t real, then all you are doing is arguing for the pretending to continue and that is a bad proposition. Google knows that Gods are imaginary.
    They always were.

  • Karla

    Luke 13 says we must bear good fruit and that fruit if fruit of Repentance not
    good works because many non-believers do good works so good works don’t
    save us! Only Repenting/trusting in Jesus Christ saves! We all must Repent!
    Christians are not to be like the world/let the secular world influence them but
    are to follow the Truth/Jesus/the Bible/Word of God! We must Repent/follow!

  • This is such great news.

    Every person who leaves religion diminishes the power of religious extremism
    just a little bit more.

    And if these people are becoming skeptics more generally, that is even better.
    Go Atheists!

  • “We all must Repent!”

    There is nothing to repent (apologize for) – especially if you believe you are a product of God’s will, which you never had any say about anyway. It is flatly incoherent.

  • Hope 4 Atheists

    Atheist Max, I wish I could be in unqualified agreement with you regarding the claim that non-religious communities are “far more” peaceful places to live. I have met Atheists who are so vitriolic and tyrannical that it makes me yearn to be in the company of kooky-but-kind Christians. If the country were in the hands of Atheists of this sort, we’d enter a whole new Inquisition-like era. Bullies, plain and simple.

    Most Atheists I’ve met are not like this, but it may be naive to assume the world would be better off by simply abandoning superstition. For my purposes, I much prefer people who promote and act with peace and kindness, regardless of their reliance on stories. If utilized properly, the stories can spread ideas like charitability and healthy social interaction. My point is that we as Atheists are as susceptible to abusing power as any mythically-based belief system, we just use tools other than a bible. We don’t have a fairy tale book telling us how to hate and bully other people. But we don’t need one. Humans always find a way.

  • Liz


    Do you know how to carry on a civil conversation or present your original thoughts rationally without quoting the Bible in every other sentence? All your posts have been in that manner which makes me question if you have any knowledge about any other subjects that humanity have accumulated to this date. Please remember that the Bible believing crowd makes up only one third of the world population so your shouting words like “repentance”, “sins” and “Jesus” has no meaning to the two thirds of the people on this planet. I guess I could quote Harry Potter book talking about Hogwarts, muggles or Professor Dumbledore in expressing all my opinions, but I know doing so would be a very ineffective method for communicating with people outside of the Harry Potter fan base. For once, I just want to know what YOU, Karla, thinks without you saying “I think this way because my 2,000 year old book says so.”

  • Ashley

    Actually they are better places to live. Take a minute to look up the happiest countries in the world and you’ll find that they are overwhelmingly secular.

  • @Hope 4,

    “I have met Atheists who are so vitriolic and tyrannical that it makes me yearn to be in the company of kooky-but-kind Christians.”

    I understand. It is true that Atheists in America are particularly angry.

    I think most of the angry Atheists
    are reacting very rationally
    to string of assaults on us:

    1. Hobby Lobby – The Supreme Court has granted Corporations the right to have a religion and to deny employees the right to do things with their own earnings which they deem good for themselves yet are outside of the corporate religion.

    2. Gay rights – though 30 states are allowing gay marriage, the backlash from churches has been leading to death threats from Preachers.
    SEPTEMBER 4, 2014

    3. Women’s Rights – The assault on women’s rights to own their bodies is completely religious. The war on contraception is the most immoral thing going on in many states. Texas is working hard to destroy all family planning centers where abortions have been carried out – and it is completely illegal. If Christian men were told they did not have the right to own their bodies and that the state could dictate who should receive their extra kidney in order to save a life – you would see this nonsense end immediately.
    The State does not have the right to take your blood even if it would save someone’s life – and it must not claim the right (through religion) to force women to endure a pregnancy which they do not want.
    Thanks to religion.

    4. Creationism replacing science – Tennessee, Texas, Louisianna, Alabama – keep your eyes on these kids as they grow up going to public schools with no more of an education than the Muslims get in the Madrasas. A nightmare in progress.
    Thanks to religion.

    I enjoy civil discourse and intelligent conversation like anybody else. I love being with happy people too.

    But we non-believers, atheists and agnostics are being denied our Constitutional Rights and that is a civil rights matter.
    We have little choice but to speak up (on occasion)
    and call attention to the poison that religion spreads.

  • One opinion

    Excellent article. I appreciated the fact that there is no slant or agenda from the author. Just the facts with no personal opinion. I couldn’t tell if she was Christian, Atheist, Buddhist or Amish. Thanks for the strait forward reporting. Nice for a change. 😉

  • Karla

    Liz-When it comes to the Bible you have to submit to it cause that’s what
    the Bible says to do. When witnessing to people if they see their sin for
    what it is then they will get convicted then realize how much they need
    to be saved. Look at all of the people that claim to be Christian yet they
    live no different from a non-Christian. Why is that? It’s because so many
    people don’t Repent/aren’t Biblical. I think like anyone else does who is a
    human and that’s why we need the Bible/Jesus. If we don’t have the Bible
    and our conscience which means with knowledge then we are lost. God
    gave us our conscience to know what is right and wrong plus the Bible
    to shows us how to live/get saved. We can’t bring what we think/opinions
    into it because that’s why the world is so confused because we wanted to
    not listen to the Bible now look how messed up the world is with all of the
    different opinions/false religions who do things their own way. God bless.

  • Massachussetts, Washington State, Oregon, Vermont, Maine – to name a few states where religion is dying off.

    Excellent places to live!

  • kittylit

    Bravo, Max. Well said. I think people are catching on.

  • Marianne Hardman

    Very well put.
    I never thought I would see 38 percent in my lifetime. Now, I don’t feel like such a self exiled Catholic person anymore.

    The deniers are so hateful, so negative and non spiritual. As I stood looking over the Grand Canyon one day, I thought, “what a great moment to believe that the layers of evolution could be seen as proof of God’s style.” But no, they can’t even entertain a wonderfully spiritual moment like that.

  • Marianne Hardman

    Why are you dismayed? No one is hurting you. Are you dismayed because other people have a different personality than you, or a different character? Of course not because those things make up the person we are. Well, so is choosing or not choosing a religion. Personal choices make us who we are. As long as no one is hurting themselves or hurting you, you have no reason to be dismayed. Live and let live.

  • Bob

    Nothing more bitter and predictable than an atheist. Don’t believe me? Make a comment on a pro-atheist blog. Wow. Of course all the comments are the same, since the “free thinkers” can’t seem to think for themselves very well. Their evangelist are still building their churches.

  • Jim

    “When it comes to the Bible, you have to submit to it cause that’s what the Bible says to do.” What kind of reasoning is that? And where does the Bible say we must submit to it?

  • Frank

    Once young people grow up and mature they will be back.

  • Frank

    If you choose anything other than following Christ you lose.

  • Karla

    Jim-Acts 5:29…We must obey God rather than man! The Bible says we all
    must Repent. Bible says Repent or perish! We all must Repent/follow Him!

  • Gary

    “When it comes to the Bible you have to submit to it cause that’s what
    the Bible says to do” D’you have any idea how nonsensical this is? You are essentially telling us that “The bible is true because it says so in the bible.” Karla, that is circular logic, and a reflection of indoctrination. You cannot use the claim you have before you to prove the claim. Sin is a theological construct without meaning outside of your religion. Sin doesn’t exist, because there is no god who we have offended, repentance is meaningless. You believe your religion is truth, well, so do the followers of every other religion on earth, you are no different and either is your faith, exactly the same as all the other religious claims that exist on earth without any evidence whatsoever and bereft of proofs.

  • Karla

    Gary-Read Romans 1:18-25. How did the world get here? For you
    to look at the universe and say that it came about just by chance
    it takes more faith to believe that than to believe in God! Bible can
    be trusted because of prophecy accuracy like Psalm 22. Read
    the Case for Christ by Lee Strobel. If the Sun was any closer we
    would burn..any further we would freeze. Just chance? Most people
    that don’t want God to be real don’t because they don’t want to be
    told how to live. Thanks for all of the feedback. God bless.

  • Ronny

    This country is a democracy. You are the minority. The End.

  • Liz

    “I think like anyone else does who is a human and that’s why we need the Bible/Jesus. If we don’t have the Bible and our conscience which means with knowledge then we are lost.”

    No Karla, you don’t think like anyone else who are not in your religious tribe and that’s why you keep ignoring 2/3 of the world’s people who don’t rely on the Bible for their moral guidance. Think of how much blood has been shed in the name of the Bible (to be fair, same goes to the Koran). For your information, many Asian countries that are religiously very diverse are morally doing just fine without the Bible’s guidance. Many European countries where now majority of people have no belief at all are doing great without the moral guidance from your antiquated book.

    What you are talking about is the “divine command theory” which asserts that what is moral is determined by what God commands, and that to be moral is to follow his commands. Under this theory, any human action, good or bad (yes, including the killings of other people), can be justified as long as a person “thinks” it is commanded by god or says it in the Bible. What could be more dangerous than that?

    “We can’t bring what we think/opinions into it because that’s why the world is so confused because we wanted to not listen to the Bible now look how messed up the world is with all of the different opinions/false religions who do things their own way.”

    That was an offensive and arrogant statement, Karla. What do you call false religions? Do you have any objective criteria set up for determining what’s true or false religion? Have you used that same criteria to examine your own religion? Again, why insulting 2/3 of the world’s population to prove your point just because they don’t agree with your religious world view? Your narrow and exclusive religious views really amaze me. I don’t think you are able or capable of thinking outside of your “bible box” and that’s very frustrating.

  • Skeptic Steve

    I’m with Atheist Max. Couldn’t have said any of those posts better.

  • Chris

    Yeah, Stalin, Hitler and Pol pot were such humanitarians. Then we have the Catholic Maximilian Kolbe who took the place of another prisoner in the concentration camp and saved the man’s life so he could return to his family, Father Damien who ministered to the lepers of Molokai and eventually became leperous himself, the Lutheran Paul Gerhard who, while grieving the death of his wife aided those dying from the plague. Not all those claiming a religious identification live up to their claims. Neither do aetheists.

  • Karla

    Liz-If you created something does someone else get credit for it?
    No they don’t! It’s the same with God. The reason why we can trust
    the Bible is because of prophecy accuracy. Who died for our sins?
    Jesus Christ did! If there were other ways why would Jesus go to the
    Cross and go through all of that if there are other ways? The Bible
    is the Truth and it says the gate is narrow/many will try to enter it
    but won’t be able to because they refuse to Repent/follow Christ.
    Jesus said I Am the Way..the Truth and the Life! Jesus is the only
    only way because He is the only one who created the world/died
    for our sins.! Only Christ fulfilled all the Bible prophecy/went to
    the Cross because only He could! All of these other religions say
    you have to earn your way by being good but the Bible says that
    there are none good..not even one! Only God is good so we all
    must Repent/trust in Jesus to be saved! Jesus among other gods
    by Ravi Zaccharias is a good book for you to read/check out.
    Thanks for all of the feedback and read the Bible. God bless.

  • Sister Geraldine Marie, R.N.

    Listen to, “Trial By Fire” preached by Peter Marshall. We need more preachers like him!

    Let’s return to home churches again and spread the Word by good deeds!

    Let us listen and pray to the One Who created us every day and see how lives and nations will change!

  • Tman

    Hitler is decidedly in the Christian camp. Whether he was an atheist or not is not relevant because he used lots of christian imagery in his speeches and then there’s always the Wehrmacht’s belt buckle inscription: “Gott mit Uns” which translates to “God with us”.

    The more important picture here, I think, is that dogma is the real problem. Atheism itself is a single issue stance. It’s not a world view. For me, I’m an agnostic atheist. I don’t see any evidence for a particular god, but since we can’t entirely refute the idea (certain gods posited by people are defintely nonsense, but that’s a somewhat different issue) I’ll just take the default position.

  • @Chris,

    Atheism = No belief (FAITH) in a God.
    That is all it is.

    Atheists can be mean or nice.
    But one will need to have ‘FAITH” in a god or an absolute truth (religion) in order to do mass evil.

    I make no claims for absolute truth or gods.

    All of the supposed Atheists you mentioned had FAITH in absolute truths – And most of them believed in god (themselves as a literal God).
    That is not Atheism.

    If you want to see how well Atheistic governments work, look at America.
    “Congress shall make no law establishing a religion…”

    That is how I run my Atheist home.
    My kids are free to choose whatever they want to believe. I have taught them to think for themselves.

    You live in a country which is run like an Atheist’s home – Please get over it and stop trying to wreck the separation of church and state.

  • @Ronny,

    Wrong. This is a Constitutional Democracy. The mob cannot rule.
    Minorities are equally protected. The End.

  • @Bob,

    “I killed my son for you. If you don’t believe it – I’ll do worse things to you.”
    – Yahweh

    I’m not bitter that you believe this.
    I am bitter that you won’t let me NOT believe it!

  • @SISTER,

    “Spread the Word by good deeds”

    Good deeds are effective.
    And it is doing wonders for Atheism.

    Paul Newman
    an Atheist inspiration: ‘Newman’s Own’ has raised $370 Million for poor sick children.

    Doctors Without Borders
    Completely non-religious, by far the most heroic of any charity on earth. No Gods needed.

    Here is the math:

    Good Deeds + God = Good Deeds

    Therefore God = zero.

  • So much for free will.
    “Believe or else”


  • mike

    I’m a baby-boomer None who still believes it’s possible for religion to benefit society. The survey is incomplete since it’s focused on post-Christians alone, but I still see it as helpful. As society becomes more secular, it will become more progressive and humanistic. When the churches finally become threatened enough to face reality they may change enough to finally benefit society rather than be a detriment to the common good as they are right now.

  • Shawnie5

    There was no such thing as “Dark Ages.” Bring that nonsense up in the history department of a university and you’ll be laughed all the way out the door.

  • momandkidz

    Christian depression is real, many of the flock are not being served. The smaller churches are boom but the mega rich television ministers are ruining the churches

    See here

  • Michael Duer

    The sooner we rid ourselves of this scourge on society, the sooner we can get down to solving the REAL issues, without having to pretend that there’s some supernatural force controlling it all!!!!
    I will just never understand how people KNOW that there’s nothing/no one intervening in their lives, and yet they still HOPE there is…. they say atheists don’t believe in a god, so they can sin, and yet see no hypocrisy in the fact that they can sin, and then just “ask for forgiveness” from an imaginary friend!!! *facepalm*

  • Jersey Romer

    Best get ready for an openly secular society.

  • Morgan

    This is the best thing I have read all week. Love it!

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  • kay

    Why does the appreciation of beauty have to have a spiritual aspect? It’s nonsense like this that irritates non- believers. Non-spiritual is a better place for many people. Get over it.

  • kay

    Smugly said but not likely. Once free, few go back.

  • Education is suffocating the ignorance of superstition. About time! AUSTRALIA! Better education! Free education for all! Equality of pay for men and women! Pro-Abortion! Australian Republic! Further Policies to be decided by Polling Atheist Values! Why be agnostic or one of those other wishy washy terms? Sure, Gods could theoretically exist but then so could Leprechauns. What do you REALLY believe?

  • Hitler was raised by a devout Catholic Mother. Stalin was also raised in a religious household. Pol Pot was a Buddhist. That’s why they hated religion. Religion created Hitler, Stalin and Pol Pot. Just as it created ISIS and the Inquisition. AUSTRALIAN ATHEISM PARTY!


    Dark Ages is just another name for the Early Middle Ages. It was made in the 14th century by Petrarch to describe the lack of cultural development during the age compared to the great classics. There may be misunderstandings around the term but that doesn’t mean that scholars don’t use the term for describing the age (not Middle Ages but Early Middle Ages as the church made sure that the High Middle Ages didn’t follow the trending idea).

  • j

    You Greg, have no idea what happened at Fatima in 1917. You should look that up.

  • j

    If you were confirmed, you are indeed a Catholic. It is a club you can’t get out of…the only question then is, what kind of Catholic?


    Yeah. This isn’t the type of thing that changes back. Mostly since the non-church social sphere and means of communicating with those out of the church sphere have grown to the point where even in old age and impending death the non-church are unlikely to change their views on the church. Not like they can’t have spiritual and afterlife beliefs without the church.


    My thoughts as well.

  • rodger

    Well, in context of American culture the label “post Christian’ covering all religions makes sense, plus he’s selling a book to an American audience, i guess.

  • rodger

    Time to move on, thats how societies and cultures progress. Time for new stories and new traditions whilst occasionally reflecting on the old.

  • Shawnie5

    True that Europeans lost interest in the classical writers during the early middle ages due to the Greek language falling into disuse. That doesn’t mean that there was no cultural development. There was actually a great deal of progress — that actually benefitted the common people, not just the literary elite who liked to consider themselves more sophisticated than their predecessors. This is what historians understand and why they don’t use the misnomer “Dark Ages.”

  • rodger

    You know, I was born into a conservative Christian family. I considered myself born again, bible believing and so on. I had an authentic faith in Christ as Saviour from as early back as I can remember. In my adult life when I started to suffer with mental health issues I pleaded with God, sort the bible for understanding, and even had Christian friends who cared. Nothing improved, in fact like many I got worse. It was through science (medication and psychology) that I found skills for management and healing. I’ve since looked for signs of God working in the Church, reading research into Christian Vs Non Christian morality (divorce & other behaviours), health, mental health, wealth, happiness and well being, and so on. If you do your research you’ll find things that the Bible promises aren’t found in any greater concentration within Christian believers than those of other faiths and non believers (who have social support, good community, and healthy values). If God is real, if his word is real, if the promises are real …. Where is he? Should not the Christian population show a greater reflection of these promises than those communities and cultures without Christianity? (or would you blame the individual for not doing Christianity right?)

    My conclusion is what I need in this life is a community of like minded people, with similar healthy values, and science.

  • Rodger

    Don’t get too frustrated Liz. Karla doesn’t seem to comprehend the ideas you are offering. In fact Karla is quoting typical responses learnt from books commonly read by mainstream Christians. People like Karla reflect the same ways of thinking and arguing as I once did. I’ve actually read those books she quotes. I guess for me asking questions and seeking information outside of the bible and books about the bible was paramount in discovering how illogical Christian arguments really are. I was blind but now I see lol … If a person is not willing, or too afraid to, ask questions and seek answers from varying and conflicting sources then they won’t progress beyond such a basic belief as “because the bible says so”.

  • Rodger

    Don’t get too frustrated Liz. Karla doesn’t seem to comprehend the ideas you are offering. In fact Karla is quoting typical responses learnt from books commonly read by mainstream Christians. People like Karla reflect the same ways of thinking and arguing as I once did. I’ve actually read those books she quotes. I guess for me asking questions and seeking information outside of the bible and books about the bible was paramount in discovering how illogical Christian arguments really are. I was blind but now I see lol … If a person is not willing, or too afraid to, ask questions and seek answers from varying and conflicting sources then they won’t progress beyond such a basic belief as “because the bible says so”. yguygiuhiuhiuh

  • I deliberately use the term DARK AGES for a reason:

    1. Religion was dominant.
    2. Religion was dominant.
    3. Religion was dominant.

    Not until the 1500’s did art begin to blossom, the rejection of religious methods became more common and a new age of Enlightenment open up possibilities.

    There is NOTHING of real value in the fossilized philosophies of bigotry and hate which we casually call Christianity, Judaism and Islam.

    These barbaric ideas of blood sacrifice are so primitive they are laughable. “Eat of my body and believe” – Jesus

    What a joke!!!!!

  • Rodger

    I’ve noticed that with some atheists too. I guess it’s all part of the human condition. As a former Christian I don’t believe science can usher in a utopian society. Nothing can.

  • @j,

    “a club you can’t get out of”

    Smoking gun. There it is.
    Be sure to never mention god gives ‘free will’…. okay?

  • J,

    Fatima is a joke. Please.
    Why has the blessed mother never appeared to anyone who was not Catholic?

    Please stop this childish nonsense.

  • Rodger

    Wayne, you sound like a born again christian spamming bible quotes.

  • @rodger,

    Hang in there. You are one of the most sane people around here.

    Religion is nonsense. There is absolutely nothing wrong with saying so.

  • Shawnie5

    Dr. C. Warren Hollister, one of the 20th century’s most distinguished scholars of medieval history, said it better than I ever could: “Anyone who believes that the era that witnessed the building of Chartres Cathedral and the invention of parliament and the university was ‘dark’ must be mentally retarded — or at best, deeply, deeply ignorant.”

    If the shoe fits…and it most certainly does.

  • Rodger

    Churches changing in order to stay relevant is probably the more likely outcome.

  • The US Constitution is an Enlightenment document. It shall live forever.

    Chartres Cathedral (I’ve been there 4 times) is a lovely but forgotten bauble. A relic from a time of fairies and gargoyles.

    The Acropolis is far superior to the dungeon that is Chartres. And the Greeks predated Chartres by a 1500 years!
    China was way ahead of Christendom with reading a writing – yet no need for a Jesus (imagine that!).

    Jesus is over-rated garbage.
    The Dark Ages deserve their moniker.

  • Praying for you, Max.

  • Many Christians have issues with the elevated place Mary holds in the Catholic Church. Right there with you, Max.

  • But, you still have the option to believe – or not. You do have a choice. Thus, free will.

  • Max, many Christians would agree with you that it is a good thing that certain religious practices, groups, leaders, denominations are being exposed as harmful to society and need to be reformed or eliminated altogether. And yes, the wonders of the universe and advances in science and medicine are fascinating and inspiring. No argument from this follower of Jesus Christ.

  • Max – you are free to believe it or not believe it. But, just as you feel strongly that you are right and seek to persuade others, so does the Christian who seeks to persuade you. No one can not allow you to not believe something.

  • Max, many Christians would agree with you that it is a good thing that certain religious practices, groups, leaders, denominations are being exposed as harmful to society and need to be reformed or eliminated altogether. And yes, the wonders of the universe and advances in science and medicine are fascinating and inspiring. No argument from this follower of Jesus Christ.

  • Max – you are right. There is absolutely nothing wrong with saying it. And, many Christians would agree with you that a lot of religion is nonsense.

  • Max – yes, our beliefs as Christians teach us that we must repent. But, we have plenty of say in whether or not we do this. As believers, we seek not our own will, but God’s will for our lives. I would agree with you completely – this is flatly incoherent for anyone who doesn’t believe as we do.

  • Greg – be careful not to lump all “religion” into one broad category. There are lots of delusional practices involved in any number of religions. However, there are many Christians who would agree with much of your post, and any Christian who is preaching hate or denying the wonders of science deserves to be called out.

  • Martlet

    She has. Look up Zeitoun.

  • Rodger – Yes. Christians should show greater love, compassion and care for their neighbors. This is what we are called to do. Sadly, many of us fail miserably at this, which causes pain and suffering to others. We are merely imperfect human beings. I am deeply sorry for your hurt and pain.

  • Liz – Karla has made it abundantly clear what she thinks. You are implying that because she believes what is taught in the Bible, that somehow she isn’t thinking for herself. That’s an unfair characterization of her position, and a personal attack on her intellect. Plenty of men and women much more intelligent than any of us have chosen to believe the teachings of the Old and New Testament, just as plenty of others have chosen not to. Your implication is clearly that anyone who believes the Bible is stupid. That is unfair, unkind and untrue.

  • Gary – I understand your position completely. There are plenty of historical, archeological, and yes, even scientific evidences and references that can suggest that there is reasonable evidence to consider the truth of biblical claims. Many great minds throughout history have believed in the truth of the biblical record. Our belief is based on a reasonable faith that what is recorded in the bible is true. You are convinced that sin doesn’t exist, there is no god, and repentance is meaningless. On what do you base your belief?

  • Not much racial/ethnic diversity in those states, Max.

  • C’mon Max…

    1. Hobby Lobby just doesn’t want to pay for abortions. Women can still get them, and their health plan provides plenty of birth control options. That’s not an unreasonable position. No one’s rights are being taken away.

    2. As a Christian, I denounce that pastors hateful rant or any other Christian preaching that vile message. We can argue Old Testament/New Testament at another time.

    3. Support for the unborn is not a war on women. And contraception and abortion are two separate issues. Most Christians I know fully support a woman’s (and man’s) right to have access to a wide variety of contraceptives. But, abortion is not one of those. Entirely different argument.

    4. Creationism and Science don’t have to be in conflict – not an either/or. For Christians, scientific discoveries are just further evidence of the complex wonder of creation, which points us to the Creator.

    And yes, respectful, civil, and passionate discourse is healthy and should be encouraged – within the church, amongst those with whom we disagree, and for all of us who don’t think alike socially and politically.

    This should be encouraged between Christians and Muslims, Blacks and Whites, Atheists and Catholics, Republicans and Democrats, Jews and Humanists.

    See how well everyone is getting along on this comment board? We are a model for the world….

  • WTH

    Actually, to be Catholic, you must be baptized, take communion, be confirmed *and sincerely believe the creed* — anyone who doesn’t believe isn’t Catholic, regardless of what rites have been performed. It’s not a club you can’t get out of…it’s a mental prison people sadly keep themselves in.

  • Thecla

    “Hurt” isn’t the point. The issue is that churches are public amenities, like libraries and parks, theaters, restaurants and public beaches which, without funding and support will shut down.

    Churches aren’t for believers only–they are facilities that provide enjoyment. I support PBS and hope others do too because I want to see that it stays on their air, and for the same reason I hope churches will continue to be supported. Not because I think they promote virtue or good works (secular organizations do that cheaper and better) but because churchiness in and of itself is a social good–like PBS, public beaches, sports stadiums, etc. and all the other public and semi-public facilities that provide enjoyment.

  • Thecla

    Of course the appreciation of beauty doesn’t have to have a “spiritual” aspect. I’m not even sure what “spiritual” is supposed to mean. The point is that churches provide a particular kind of aesthetic experience that I and others happen to enjoy–just one among many flavors. I like church because (1) it’s multimedia–not just music, but music, architecture, ceremony, smells and bells and (2) because it’s participatory–you get to sing and move around. That’s just my taste. I can’t see why this should irritate non-believers. You don’t have to be a believer to enjoy the church show, and the church show is just one of a lot of different kinds of aesthetic and sensual experiences, no better or worse than others.

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  • Karla

    Forgiven Sinner-Amen/well said! We must Repent!

  • Dennis Arashiro

    Thank you for not saying that religion has anything to do with truth.

  • Bill

    You have hit the nail on the head and I could not of said it any better. But I will say the ones that are causing harm have religion, not Christianity, their is a big difference.

  • Churchless in the Heartland

    Repent? Why? I repented for 26 long years and I’m exhausted!  No human being should have to “endure” what we suffered in the name of faith and religion. Religion did not come to my rescue when I went for help countless of times; instead they stood by my abusive father and his “we can do this the Legal way or the Christian way” premise; just so he wouldn’t lose his fkn “military benefits” [expletive deleted] line I had heard all my life. YEAH that happened. Still I hadn’t lost my own faith, YET, I believed with all my heart and soul that ‘Jesus’ had his perfect moment when he would finally be ready to save my father. I mean , my father did read the bible to me, before and after he had his wicked ways on me,  so there must be a hope, right? I finally broke free and married only to see his threats, my worst nightmare, show its wicked head yet again, as my little sister tells me that “daddy” was touch her. This time I did what nobody would do for me, I took her to the ER  and  filed charges against him on her behalf. She was 6 years old. He went to prison. But it was not over yet, when she was 15 she picked up the phone at the “Christian School” she attended; and where our mother worked and our father did his “A/C” repair work,  and bravely called 911 herself! “Religion” didn’t teach her how to protect herself , I DID , it simply taught her to forgive and to continue to pray. SO back to prison for him, Again! And,YEAH, all because my mother took him back when he was released from prison for abusing her in the “first time”. After all it was her “christian duty” as a wife and besides how would she  ever be able to raise the kids all by herself blah blah blah blah blah!  He had never ever stopped the sexual abuse, in fact it only got worse! Now, fast forward to my 1995 nightmare, when my teenage son has to tell me that “my christian bible reading husband”  was abusing his little sister, our very own daughter! That very moment my eyes were wide open knowing there was no real god after all, it had all been a lie; There was no prayer that had been heard and there would be no saving of souls. So, I put down the “Bible” right next to beliefs, faith, and forgiveness” that ultimately proved to be useless. Next, I passed on the opportunity to ” grab his gun before he did” instead I laced up my boots for the fight of a lifetime, the fight to protect my daughter! Within an hour I reported him to the authorities knowing that “this time” I was well prepared for the biggest legal case to date by having educating myself with  current child abuse laws over the past 16 years. Laws had finally caught up to the reality of incest and the damage it causes on our innocent children; with these drastic changes I put my ex-husband in prison with over 20 child abuse charges. The church? Hum. It took that infamous “king’s” hand washing stance; HOWEVER, it was no longer 1977, 1979, 1981, or 1986 and the church is now liable for failure to report child abuse (my daughter had reported  the abuse to the church they did nothing they did not report it). Knowing this, it attempts to keep our family  “together” by trying to scare me into “submission” with their biblical attacks of the” “the virtuous wife”. And with what I’d been told myself by my pastor when I was 14 and pleading for help, with their “You should consider his job and reputation, after all, he says you are a frigid wife” and “how are you going to support 4 children on your own if he goes to prison” comments straight out of its religiosity statements of “faith” [expletive deleted]! Seriously?!?! Here I had been born into Christianity, literally under the pews since birth, had been abused since the  age of 3 “god & all with a front row seat”, I had taken legal action to protect my little sister &  “I thought”  I was protecting my own children in a godly home….and THAT is the  best Religion could come up with, with their “you’re a frigid wife” routine? Religion had not changed after all, but I did, I stopped attending church immediately,  I couldn’t pray and trust this invisible god that had failed to intervene and now “”I”” had to be the one to “keep the faith” and teach yet another generation to simply confess your sin with pray and god will forgive you and make it all go away? Oh Aw Hell Nah!!! Today at the age of 51, with a mind of my own, I can stand even firmer AGAINST RELIGION and its aim to keep folks ignorant under the gise of its bible only to secure it’s money hungry greediness. Be aware that with its promise of “ultimate forgiveness” for its believers perpetuates an ‘anything goes safety belief system’ that created and endorsed these two men; by “turning the other cheek” and providing forgiveness after they “sinned” with their horrific irreparable damage and crimes against humanity itself. Why do these practices run so deep and why is it so easily forgiven and accepted by religious people? Make Note… after serving a dismal《 8 》 years on a 100+years multiple life sentences prison term,  my ex-husband was released and is free today. Proclaiming forgiveness by his “god” for his “sin” and giving all the glory to “Jesus” for his new found freedom?! NOW he gets to attend the “family” oriented place of worship, you know the one, right next to the local Elementary School. God is so good now isn’t he? Hence, there is no room in my life for blind faith and repentance. If that make me the Quintessential “Post-Christian”, it’s all good,  its kind of like PTSD;  and I’m fresh out of trust for these man-made religion specifically gear to injure me and my family year after year, even decades, at nauseum! There cannot possibly be a merciful god because if there where the children would be the prioity. So, again, why repent? Please tell me something I haven’t already heard, TAG, you’re it, NAMISTAI and good luck with that.

  • Dana Harrington

    Thank god!

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  • Bob Goodwin

    To assert that churches are public amenities reveals a woeful ignorance of the Constitutional separation of church and state. They are nothing like “libraries and parks, restaurants and public beaches.” You can enjoy all the latter without getting fed a concoction of fables, guilt trips and anti-science nonsense.

  • Shawnie5

    “And the Greeks predated Chartres by a 1500 years!”

    I always find it remarkable how naive and gullible westerners look ga-ga at the pyramids and classical ruins and never even stop to consider their cost in human suffering. They were put in place via the blood and sweat and misery of slaves that made up a third of that society. Chartres was at least built with free labor long after Christendom had repudiated slavery.

    “China was way ahead of Christendom with reading a writing – yet no need for a Jesus (imagine that!).”

    China had some contributions to make, but y the time trade was established with them the west had far outstripped them technologically. They have not yet caught up to this day.

    “The Dark Ages deserve their moniker.”

    Clearly, Dr. Hollister was correct in correlating this idea with deep ignorance. Thank you as always for being Exhibit A.

  • @Forgiven Sinner,

    “Not much racial/ethnic diversity in those states, Max.”

    And how much diversity is in Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq or Pakistan?

    There is no problem with diversity in (mostly Atheist) Arlington, Mass. or Cambridge, Mass.

    Black Atheists of Atlanta is trying desperately to liberate more black people out of religion. Religion is one of the most destructive forces in some black communities.

  • Damages of religion are profound.

  • @Shawnie,

    “consider their cost in human suffering….”

    Tai Ping Rebellion. 45 Million People killed by Christians. For what?
    Oh, yeah. Christ.

    You are trying to spread ‘faith’ and it doesn’t work anymore, Shawnie.

    A faithful, gullible population burns witches.
    A scientifically minded, skeptical population rejects witchcraft.

    You are promoting immorality and evil.

  • It isn’t ‘free’ if it is “given” with caveats and it can only be accepted in a certain way.
    This is nonsense.

  • The problem with the Hobby Lobby decision is that it gave corporations the right to have a religion.

    You don’t care about this. Because you think all corporations will be Christian.

    You don’t care about the walls of separation or the rights of people to stand against the corporation.

    BUT – you Wait until the day when they outlaw blasphemy or heresy again – and the corporate religion decides it wants to stop you from your free speech, your protestations.

    Imagine a world where corporations are Muslim and want to enforce Sharia Law on their employees. It isn’t far fetched.

    You Christians are throwing away ALL of your freedoms because you are blind to the consequences of enforced religion – this is another disaster handed to us by religion; IGNORANCE.

    Religion destroys freedom.

  • Southern Athiest

    Frank, I don’t think so. I grew up in the south to parents who were extremely religious when I was a child. My mom’s side of the family was deep southern baptist, and my dad’s side of the family was french catholic. After my first VBS, I came home to both my parents and had already begun highlighting parts of the bible that were omitting story parts, and scriptures that openly contradicting each other. I still remember the look on my mother’s face when I asked why the lie of omission about where Cain and Able’s wives came from, and that in one scripture proved to me that there were other people besides the 4 of them. My mother was livid, and never let me forget it, still to this day. And btw, yes I was that kid who got A’s in english, and won spelling bee’s. I loved words and books, still do. It grew like a poison for me, the more I read the book, the more contradictions I found in the scriptures. In my teens, I finally went to my dad and told him I had major doubts and wanted his input. What he said to me changed my life on the spot.”Religion is a personal choice to believe in something for yourself. I did not send you to school to follow, I sent you to school to educate yourself, so that you could make better choices for yourself because you are a singular, sentient, unique human being. The only way to know who you truly are, is to educate yourself”. He never got angry over my choice to discontinue my belief, whereas it completely broke my relationship with my mother, and to this day, we do not speak.

    Over the years, I have read every piece of history I could find from the Talmud, to the Kaballah, to the Apocrypha, the Testament to Mary Magdalene, the testament to Phillip, to the history behind why Jefferson took a strap razor and but up the bible to make his own Jefferson Bible, and what he left in it and why. There are over a dozen historical myths and stores of “a great flood” including the oldest, which by date is the version of the Gilgamesh flood story. I even read the Alphabet of Ben Sira, from the Jewish Library, which gives an account of Adam’s first wife Lillith. To date, I have listed over 200 conflicting scriptures in not just the KJV of the bible but also the Catholic bible, which has a few more books in it. The more educated I made myself, the more I came to the realization that for me, and alot of people, they are just that, mythological stories. I stopped believing the your god about the same time I stopped believing in the tooth fairy, the easter bunny, and Santa Clause. Education reaffirmed my personal choice. Over the years, the uncovering of scrolls, archaeological finds, and translated books just added to con side of my choice.

    Therein lies the crux of the problem for me and I’m betting alot of others. My parents sent me to school to get an education so I could make the best choice for myself, and yet when I did, and others do as well. some radical christian believers took it as an offense. I will never believe in a book or any book, for myself, that makes any human being, less or sub human than another based on religion or culture. Nor will I ever believe that a country as vastly secular as ours, should have the legal right,, to create laws to force one religious view over others. That is the war that is coming in America, very soon I believe. It it our differences that make us stronger, not forcing everyone to be the same. And I see that happening every day in the news, on the street, in listening to conversations around me. I, myself, have come to the single point, that you, and the radical christian movement that is growing, will have to put a bullet in my head, before I serve any law, that takes away my individuality, my freedom of choice to do what is best for myself, or be forceably converted back to a religion I know longer believe in from personal choice. I would rather die free, then convert.

  • steve

    Well churches certainly do provide enjoyment, if you are into iron age snuff porn.

    At times I do find the sight of supposedly grown up human beings grovelling to an invisible friend hysterically funny but mainly I am embarrassed for these poor deluded children in adult bodies and await they day when they too will become fully functional members of our increasingly secular society.

  • The Great God Pan

    ” I have met Atheists who are so vitriolic and tyrannical that it makes me yearn to be in the company of kooky-but-kind Christians.”

    Ah, the faitheist’s false dichotomy. Good luck finding kind Christians to hang out with. Be sure to scratch the facade and see what lies underneath. I hope you’re hetero, or you might be putting yourself in danger.

  • steve

    Hey Forgiven Sinner, I’m talking to my cat for you.

  • steve

    I take it as a positive sign that accusing someone of acting like a christian is increasing seen as an insult.

  • steve

    Hey j, I’m not the kind of Catholic that aids and abets clerical child molesters by providing financial and moral support to that multinational criminal cartel known as the Catholic Church.

    Are you a kiddy diddler enabler j ?

  • The Great God Pan

    ” As a Christian, I denounce that pastors hateful rant or any other Christian preaching that vile message.”

    Why? He is just preaching what’s in the Bible.

    As a gay atheist, I respect that pastor more than I respect Christians who pick the “nice” parts of the Bible and pretend the rest doesn’t count. Your own holy book says that “lukewarm” believers like you will be spat out of your God’s mouth in disgust.

  • charles

    i think that the internet is helping the world to wake up from all that ignorance. in a world where you can easily look up competing worldviews and arguments on all sides, you can then rationally weigh the merits and evidence for anything. eventually people in general will be from religious nonsense. it’s only a matter of time. what we’re seeing right now from the the religious end of society is a bunch of desperate attempts to appear relevant in the face of a world that is rapidly outgrowing such childish worldviews. people are growing out of their superstitions and understanding the world around them better all the time, growing in their understanding of science and facts.

  • steve

    Churches will indeed have to change to survive but they will have to change to the point where they will no longer be recognizably religious.

    One you remove all the sectarianism, misogyny, homophobia and unfounded adherence to crazy iron age dogma there is not much left but a tax exempt social club where people gather on a weekly basis to sing really badly and race each other to be the first out of the parking lot.

  • steve

    Holy non-sequitur Forgiven Sinner !

    What’s your point ?

    If you are trying to point out that religion is more prevalent among the poor and uneducated, I am in agreement with you.

    There is a definite correlation between economic hardship and religiosity and in general the more affluent a society is the less religious it is, with the good old US of A being a notable outlier.

    The societies with the highest standards of living which “includes factors such as income, quality and availability of employment, class disparity, poverty rate, quality and affordability of housing, hours of work required to purchase necessities, gross domestic product, inflation rate, number of holiday days per year, affordable (or free) access to quality healthcare, quality and availability of education, life expectancy, incidence of disease, cost of goods and services, infrastructure, national economic growth, economic and political stability, political and religious freedom, environmental quality, climate and safety” are typically the least religious.

  • Shawnie5

    “For what? Oh, yeah. Christ.”

    A false Christ, of exactly the kind that Jesus clearly warned His true followers to not even bother “going out to see”. Not the best advertisement for your cause., in case you haven’t noticed.

    “A faithful, gullible population burns witches.”

    It also buys into simplistic, petulant nonsense about religion “poisoning everything” because of an utter lack of historical knowledge which renders it helpless against propaganda. Again, you are exhibit A.

  • Shawnie5

    I always take it as a positive sign that the church is doing something right when the popular culture of the world mocks and repudiates it. That’s the way Christ said it should be if the church is authentic.

  • steve

    Hey Shawnie5, if the world is mocking and repudiating your personal relationship with an invisible friend it’s because your invisible friend has some really, really bad ideas that translate in real human suffering and misery when authentic christians like you put them into practice.

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  • Liz

    @Forgiven Sinner,

    I have no idea why you assumed I was attacking Karla’s intelligence. Read my post again and tell me where I made such indications. What I was questioning was Karla’s unwillingness to even acknowledge that there are many beliefs other than Christianity; the Christians (all 40,000 denominations) only make up 1/3 of the world’s population. She called all other religions “false” and I called her out for her arrogance and offensiveness toward other religious beliefs. I also questioned her assertion that the Bible is the only moral guidance by giving her examples of non-Bible believing societies also have sound moral codes to guide their conducts. In response, Karla made a circular logical argument that the Bible is true because the Bible says so which made me frustrated.

    I don’t think person’s intelligence or intellect has anything to do with their dogmatic religious belief, but everything to do with the person’s upbringing and indoctrination by a religion that is most prominent in a country where that person was born. Your comment toward me is very much misguided.

  • Shawnie5

    You’ll always have an excuse to offer for your hostility–it doesn’t matter what it is. The point is that Jesus said it would be so. I’d be a lot more worried if you guys were telling us how great we were.

  • Liz

    @ The Great God Pan,

    I totally agree with you. There are so many “buffet style” Christians who only pick the happy, clappy versions and completely ignore all horrible and uncomfortable parts of their holy book. Love the sinner but hate the sin motto, anyone? Having said that, I really can’t comprehend why some gays want to hang on to a religion/church that hates and shuns them.

  • Rodger

    Actually that has nothing to do with my comment. I sought God for healing, not man. And I’m actually addressing the idea that the bible promises a spiritual transformation occurs, through the Holy Spirit, in the Believer. You would then logically assume that if the Holy Spirit is at work in his people this transformation (and healing) would be found in the average believer, more so than ‘non Christian believers’. So when comparing believers to non believers and believers of other faith you would find Christians to be more moral (Paul talks about our characters being transformed through the Holy Spirit), have better well-being (fruits of the spirit), greater incidents of healing (numerous bible promises), and so on. Guess what researcher have found. Nothing. No significant differences have been found. So my question is … where is the Holy Spirit to be found working in ‘God’s people’?

  • WakeUpSheeple

    Churchless in the Heartland: I am so so so so sorry for what you have endured throughout your life. You are a strong wonderful woman for doing what it took to protect your family, & I agree with you 100%. When I was a young kid going to church with my mom, very little of what I was being taught ever made any sense to me. As I got much older & became aware of the absolute unspeakable horrors that go on in the world, I knew for sure then: even if there WERE a god, who is all-powerful as they say, then I wouldn’t want to know him, as he would be allowing people, children, even babies to be raped etc around the world on a daily basis. How could anyone with the power to stop such horrors not do so?!?! How could you love someone that had the power to stop these things yet didn’t?! I cannot understand how people can believe in a god, or just somehow overlook the fact that the god they believe in doesn’t stop these horrific things from happening to innocents. I am so sorry for all that you have endured & I so fervently hope that you & your innocent family members never again have to endure such atrocities. I hope & wish for you so badly that you instead will experience only the respect & dignity & love from your fellow man that you so greatly deserve, for the rest of your lives.

  • mike

    Marianne Hardman, despite what “j” said in the reply to you, if you say you’re not Catholic, you’re not Catholic. I formally defected from the Church in July 2009 prior to that option being removed from Canon Law. Even if the Church chose to not recognize my defection, it wouldn’t matter. I reject the Catholic Church and its inane teachings. I’ll never give those crooks another penny and never again participate in its liturgical circus. It’s obvious to every thinking person that I’m no longer Catholic, no matter what the Church or any of it’s sycophants say.

  • Southern Atheist,

    I’m soooo glad to see you. Speak, brother.

  • Randy Schenck

    It is always good news to hear that reason and free thinking is going in the right direction. That percentages of non believe go up as we look at the younger is very good. Theology is the practice of thinking up excuses for believing in [expletive deleted].

  • @TheGreat God Pan,

    The most dangerous thing is a person who says “I’m doing the work of the Lord”

    “The only remedy for homosexuals is that they be put to death..”
    SEPTEMBER 4, 2014

    I am often scolded by Christians who say I must not ‘cherry pick’
    because it leads to incorrect understanding. Why don’t they ever talk to their Preachers about the same thing?


    ….From the most evil parable of the Minas; the most evil sentences in all of the Bible are uttered BY JESUS.

    Millions and MILLIONS of innocent people have died because Jesus said this disgraceful, primitive nonsense !!!!!

  • Rodger

    That comes across very patronising … “praying for you”

  • Rodger

    Of course you would. But the point here is that by doing this type of spamming the message the Christian (or political activist) is pushing most likely falls on deaf ears.

  • “Science cannot bring in a utopia”

    I’m against utopia. It is as stupid a dream as Heaven.

    But science is solving so many problems – people should be embarrassed about what they don’t know instead of proud of their ignorance!



    Meanwhile back in illiterate Palestine…. “fig tree, be dead” – Jesus


  • Thecla

    I’m not suggesting that churches be publicly funded but that, like theaters, concert halls, restaurants, supermarkets and such they’re public goods supported by sales and voluntary contributions.

    I don’t ever remember being fed guilt trips or anti-science nonsense at church. I am not evangelical, have no sympathy whatsoever for evangelicalism. Anyway, the point of church isn’t to listen to the priests silly yap–I never have. You believe what you please, behave as you will and enjoy the show.

  • @Shawnie,

    Religion does poison everything. It starts with poisoning a persons integrity, then it destoys their intelligence,

    Then it moves on to fig trees!

    “Fig tree, be dead now!” – Jesus (Matthew, 21:19)

    Pathetic garbage.
    Is Christianity a movement which has historical significance? – YES.
    Is Christianity serving its culture in the same way Osiris served the Egyptians? – ABSOLUTELY.
    Is Christianity serving people today in the same way Zeus and Aphrodite served previous cultures? – ABSOLUTELY

    But they are all myths. And they are better forgotten.

    This is a new age of science. With science comes new problems, new headaches and new attempts at solutions to cultural problems.

    Religion doesn’t need to be ridiculed. It is ridiculous on its face.
    Nobody sends an Ambulance to a Church!
    People go to the hospital when they are sick – not to the priests!

    Religion is dying. And it must die. Right along with Zeus.

  • Rodger

    Edit (sorry!)

    Actually what you have replied has nothing to do with my comment. I sought God for healing, not man.

    What I’m actually addressing is the idea that the bible promises a spiritual transformation, through the Holy Spirit, in the Believer. I then logically assume that if the Holy Spirit is at work in his people (by bringing to fruition the promises of the bible) this transformation (and healing – psychological and physical) would be found in the average believer, more so than the average ‘non Christian believers’. So when comparing Christian believers to non believers (and believers of other faiths) you should find Christians to be more moral (Paul talks about our characters being transformed through the Holy Spirit), have better well-being (fruits of the spirit), greater incidents of healing (numerous bible promises), and so on. If the word of god (the bible) is truth then these things should be occurring in the Christian population, more so than the non christian populations of the world. Guess what researcher have found. Nothing. No significant differences have been found. So my question is … where is the Holy Spirit to be found working in ‘God’s people’?

  • Rodger

    I guess i should have qualified that statement. I guess i don’t believe, as some have, that through science a utopian society is possible because of the nature of man. So there will always be bastards everywhere, even atheists!! But I do hope for an improvement!!

    I read about stem cells treating brain cancer this morning that this morning, simply awesome!

  • LGMarshall

    The more secular we become, the less our desires match up with God’s will. God’s will for us, (via his Holy Spirit) is to bear fruit of ; love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, humility, and self-control. Does anyone aspire to that anymore…? . And it cannot be accomplished through human will.

  • Rodger

    “Amen” 🙂

    In my 20’s I had so many questions about the many contradictions in the bible. I was asked by a minister “why can’t you just have a simple faith like others in the Church?” because my questions had started to bother people. I actually thought i was ‘evil’ because I couldn’t just have a simple faith. I though God must have rejected me, hardened my heart to ‘the truth’. Then some time later, another minister said something to me that changed everything. He told me that questions indicated intelligence and that made perfect sense to me. So I kept questioning, Im still questioning.

  • pam elhachimy

    Hello everyone! My name is Pam Elhachimy. All my life growing up I felt very unloved by my own parents. School was hard for me because I was emotional wreck from my alcoholic father and over bearing mother. the one thing they gave me was my catholic faith. I went to mass daily and in doing so I began to love Jesus as I could identify with his suffering on the cross. I would always see Jesus on the cross at every mass and over time I came to understand human suffering and how much I was loved by Jesus. When I was in my twenties I married a man and had 3 beautiful children. We were both catholics and had our children baptized. I loved taking them to mass and teaching them to love Jesus. My husband became abusive to me over the years and he left the faith. I continued to be faithful to Jesus in going to mass regularly and one day my husband threw me on the ground and told me if I do not leave my catholic faith he was going to kill me! He went into a rage and his fist almost hit me when under my breath I said Jesus help me! All fear immediately left me and strength flooded me and I rose up and threw my husband off me and gathered my 3 babies and got in my car and left. After that i began to realize what the pearl of great price meant in the scriptures. My Catholic faith was the great pearl. I was not going to give up my faith in Jesus for nothing or nobody. My children grew up and I taught them the love of Jesus. The more I grew in my love for Jesus in the Holy Eucharist the more Jesus love grew in me and made me and my children whole. I separated from my husband because it was a matter of life and death. Through Jesus transforming me in His love I was able to forgive and even pray for my husband. I want him in heaven one day also. I know many people have many views on religion but I will tell you that Jesus is a real person and He loves you very much. I am here to testify to the truth. I was praying in a chapel in cincinatti and Jesus came out of the Tabernacle and took me into heaven . I had an outer body experience and I was not dead. I was very much alive. It was the most wonderful experience of my life. I was in complete peace and happiness! This has all been documented by a very holy priest and I can only tell you that heaven is very real. In heaven there is total love and joy! I want to tell all of you that each one of you are loved by Jesus and He wants all of you with HIm in heaven forever. If you have any doubts of what I have told you just ask Jesus in your heart if what I have told you is true and He will tell you. He is very much alive and wants to fill you also with His love. I will tell you that our minds cannot begin to comprehend the love and knowledge of God. Our intellects can only go so far. But the knowledge of God is only there for the asking. Peace.

  • @LGMarshall,

    “God’s will for us…is to bear fruit of ; love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, humility, and self-control. Does anyone aspire to that anymore…?”

    What does god or Jesus have to do with any of that!?

    LOVE? – “Don’t throw your pearls to pigs!” – JESUS (Matthew 7:6)

    JOY? – “I create evil. I the Lord do all these things.” (Isaiah 45:7)

    PEACE? –“I have come to bring fire! I am so impatient to bring not peace…but DISASTER.” (Luke 12:49-51)

    GOODNESS? –“Do some raping and stealing”– YAHWEH (Zech 14:1-2)

    FAITHFULNESS? –Jesus lied to his friends, “He went in secret”(John 7:8-13)

    GENTLENESS? –Jesus violently whipped people, “He made a whip of cords”(John 2:5)


    SELF-CONTROL? –“Cursed be he who does the Lords work remissly, cursed he who holds back his sword from blood.” (Jeremiah 48:10)

    There is nothing good in this garbage.

  • Hell yes – Speak it brother!!!

  • @Forgiven,

    Nice try.
    But Jesus is a religion – the worst religion of them all.

    If it isn’t, I’m sure you won’t mind if the IRS starts taxing the churches?
    If Jesus isn’t a religion, Churches which preach Jesus should be heavily taxed as any other typical institution. I’m glad to hear you encourage taxing churches.

  • Forgiven,

    “you are free to believe it or not believe…”

    NOT according to recent court actions:

    State Legalized Murder of Doctors – South Dakota

    Mandatory Trans-vaginal probes – Virginia Legislature

    Preaching the Bible in public schools – funded by Hobby Lobby

    Forced prayer at Government meetings – Supreme Court has allowed this.
    Blocking people from family planning – Texas, 5 other states.

    Obstruction of prescriptions – Illinois, Washington

    Discrimination as religious choice -Arizona (SB-1062)

    Anti-Gay laws – Texas
 & elsewhere

    Anti-women’s rights laws – Texas, Louisina, Virginia

    Biased Counseling laws – South Dakota

    Creationism to replace Science Education: 12 States
    “Intelligent Design” to replace Scientific theories

    Jesus is like an EBOLA an invasion into our laws.
    I don’t want it!

    So as long as your churches are funding these faith-based programs among others I will have to challenge you.

    Don’t be angry that Jesus can’t seem to function without all these government programs. I wish Christians could figure out how Jesus might help them without tampering with our public laws.

    Keep your Jesus at home, with your families and at church. Pray in public as much as you like – no problem.

    JUST DON”T INCLUDE ATHEISTS and don’t force ME to follow the laws of your bloody space fairy – and we will get along fine.

  • @Forgiven,

    Jesus is an EBOLA disease attacking the thinking process.
    Complete infection results in death of critical thinking.

  • Nonsense.

  • Southern Athiest

    Pam, while I am both thrilled for you and respect your freedom to choose your religion and your beliefs, they do not work for myself and others. I too, have the freedom of choice to say, No Thank you, I do not believe in your religion or your god. So please respect my wishes as a free human being as well. I am not a christian, and do not wish to be.

    However, this alludes to part of the issue that some of us have with radical christians. You don’t even follow your own scriptures, “And as many as receive you not, when ye depart from that city, shake off the dust from your feet for a testimony against them.” Mark 6:11 You’ve become so narcissistic in the thought process that you are so sure you are right that you know what’s better for complete strangers more than they know their own selves.

    This is why it’s turned into a complete turn off for more and more people every day. You can’t stop yourself from trying to convert everyone to your personal beliefs, that you are willing to make slaves of everyone else by ramming it down their throats, over and over and over. It just adds to the allusion that you are so arrogant and egotistical, that you know can run someone’s life you don’t even know. And THAT is why people are leaving the faith in droves.

  • Rodger


    No!!!! my friend … keep the seperation of Church and State. The second they start paying taxes is the second they’ll demand the right to shape policy.

    I don’t want them to pay taxes, thats for sure!

  • Rodger

    I don’t want to diminish your experiences with abusiveness and the hope you found in your belief. I acknowledge the suffering you have lived through and the pain endured.

    However, stories like this can be found in every religion, some report similar things without religion too For example. they find a belief in themselves or supportive friends. Also, Forgiveness is a universal principle as it frees us from the torture of anger and hatred. Its something I have to work on everyday.

    Also, the experiences you share here about an outer body experience is also found in every religion I’ve read about. It also occurs in the non religious too. So does visions, prophecy, healings, voices of God, and so on.

  • Rodger

    @Pam I don’t want to diminish your experiences with abusiveness and the hope you found in your belief. I acknowledge the suffering you have lived through and the pain endured.

    However, stories like this can be found in every religion, some report similar things without religion too For example. they find a belief in themselves or supportive friends. Also, Forgiveness is a universal principle as it frees us from the torture of anger and hatred. Its something I have to work on everyday.

    Also, the experiences you share here about an outer body experience is also found in every religion I’ve read about. It also occurs in the non religious too. So does visions, prophecy, healings, voices of God, and so on.

  • Rodger

    Oh I think I misunderstood what you meant. I think ‘post Christian’ here refers to the large group of people moving away from Christianity in America… hence ‘churchless’ … or in other words those becoming more secular than Christian.

  • Graham

    Atheist Max – I just read the list you provide of Christian attempts to amend the law in Some US states. I thought you were making it up- so I checked it. UNBELIEVABLE! I am from England and the realisation that such barbaric primitive actions are taking place in what is the world’s leading democracy is horrifying. What is happening to America? It seems to be reverting to some fundamentalist medieval worldview…..what ever happened to progress and enlightenment? The sooner we dump all kinds of religious fundamentalism the better.

  • Karen

    Atheist Max: You are quoting Bible verses free of their context in order to prove your point, which is as abidingly stupid coming from an atheist as it is from any Christian.

    You sound as strident and inflexible as the most fervent followers of any religion. Atheism is clearly your religion and you are online trying to convert people. It isn’t working. Your arguments aren’t based in any kind of understanding of human nature. You use “all or nothing” statements, which are silly. Of course there is some good in Christianity and in the Bible. Some good and some bad and a lot of begats and outdated rules for a wandering tribe in the Middle East.

    The problem really isn’t religion anyway. If it wasn’t religion causing issues it would be politics or something else. The real problem is human nature and our propensity for wanting to be part of a RIGHT tribe and wanting to “fight” an opposing, WRONG tribe.

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  • Satyam Bruyat

    Your comment reminded me of an excellent comic on Islam, titled ‘Mohammed’s Believe It or Else’ (available at

  • What I’ve heard is to be considered a practicing catholic, you have to be up-to-date on all that stuff. You don’t get to enjoy the “benefits” of church membership, such as they are.

    However, I have also heard that once you’re baptized into the church, you are part of their headcount forever. So, when they say “50 billion served” or however they claim their numbers, they are counting people like me, who did 9 years of catholic school as a child, but no longer wants anything to do with them.

  • Tony Johnston

    You need therapy…Go hug a tree or something…

  • Joe

    It is amazing how many Christianophobes are on this site.
    My goodness, the rabid hate for something they call, delusion, is wildly amazing to me.
    The completely fabricated idea that follower of Jesus Christ are denying people equal rights is totally idiotic thinking.
    I commend Greg in exposing his phobia, and his hatred, a feeling he assigned to us delusional people.
    I’ll say a prayer for you Greg, hoping God reveals himself to you in this life, since believing in anything is simply a choice.
    You are Pro-Choice, I pray?

  • Joe

    So Charles you are Anti-Islam, Anti-Jewish, Anti-Religion.
    I bet you are Pro-choice in your beliefs.
    It is still amazing to me how ego-centric the Pro-choicer’s are.
    Just to let you know some facts:
    The biggest Christian group resides inside China: 300 Million and growing everyday.
    Why don’t you take a run at them.
    God Bless, and may Jesus reveal himself to you as he did Paul, with a blinding revelation of truth.

  • Liz

    @ Wally,

    Let me guess…you must be an underachieved, obviously uneducated Mr. Nobody who hates mom but still lives in the basement of her house, right? Because any refined, educated and emotionally matured man would never use the word like “feminoid”. The level of misogyny, ignorance and immaturity you displayed is disgusting.

  • Sherri G

    Absolutely AGREE!!

  • Sherri G

    I meant that for Forgiven Sinner

  • @Wally,


    (Deuteronomy 20:14)

    How Jesus talks to his mother:
    “Lady, why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My hour has not yet come.”
    (John 2:4)

    In other words: “Bitch, back off – my schedule is more important than whatever you think you needed from me!”

    It is no surprise that Mary never tries to talk to Jesus again after that!

  • Southern Atheist,

    Well said!

  • Joe

    Poor Maryanne, come out of exile you poor hater.
    We welcome you.
    May you be blessed by your god, yourself.
    Good old mother earth, preach it sister.
    lol, you must have had a horrible experience with your priest.
    Micro evolution is wonderful.
    Macro evolution is a figment of the great guess-ta-hood.

    There are over 24,000 ancient fragments and manuscripts of the New Testament in existence today
    Compared to other ancient texts like the Iliad, for example, with less than 2,000 ancient fragments or copies
    No other book is even a close second to the Bible on either the number or early dating of the copies. The average secular work from antiquity survives on only a handful of manuscripts; the New Testament boasts thousands.

    The average gap between the original composition and the earliest copy is over 1,000 years for other books.

    The New Testament, however, has a fragment within one generation from its original composition, whole books within about 100 years from the time of the autograph [original manuscript], most of the New Testament in less than 200 years, and the entire New Testament within 250 years from the date of its completion.
    Do the research, do the math, sucks to be so hateful, but you will always have hope with Jesus.

  • Joe

    Hi Steve,
    My “friend” is not invisible, that doesn’t make any sense.
    If you have an invisible friend, I will pray for you, that my visible friend, Jesus reveals himself to you.
    Your hate is so real, did you have a bad religious experience.
    I myself am not religious, it is a chosen lifestyle.
    You are Pro-choice I hope.

  • kendrick1

    It’s hilarious that self-proclaimed intelligent people spend so much time and effort — and money — fighting against a God that they admit themselves doesn’t exist!

    I don’t believe in astrology but I waste no time in trying to wipe it from the face of the earth!

  • @Graham,

    You are exactly right to be horrified.
    A stronger secular movement is urgent.

    I don’t know when America became so gung ho for Jesus but this is a nightmare. The Evangelical movement is spending hundreds of millions of dollars promoting this nonsense:

    1. Fox News has made a concerted effort to push right wing Christianity.
    2. Fox News and other media is pushing Christian Right Wing politicians and political interests.
    3. A right wing corporate oligarchy is emerging in America – the Hobby Lobby Supreme Court decision and Citizen’s United have handed power to the oligarchs in America.

    The Separation of Church and state is under intense attack.
    Many Christians are unwittingly complicit through their donations to their churches. Evangelicals are working hard to seize government powers – if not direct power, indirectly by handing to the blessed corporations in question.

    There is a rising concentration of wealth and it coincides with Christian Evangelical influence – and it threatens democracy.

    Evangelical organizations like “Truth in Action Ministries”
    raise hundreds of millions of dollars to obliterate women’s reproductive rights, women’s equality, gay rights and to FORCE THE SECOND COMING OF JESUS (LOL!) by sending $100 Million to Israel for the building of Israeli settlements.

    Christianity is becoming a nightmare. Again.

    But I have hope that this is only making secular people more active. Atheists are suddenly everywhere and speaking up.
    I have hope. But no evidence of a turnaround yet.

  • @Rodger,

    “keep the seperation of Church and State”

    Absolutely, it is crucial.
    I was just testing our ‘Forgiven Sinner’ to see how far he would go with dismantling his church in order to replace it with ‘a relationship’.

    Christians like to say Jesus is ‘just a relationship’. But one doesn’t need any land or churches for ‘a relationship’ with someone who never shows up.
    I like to point out that such a relationship is just a mirage.

    I wish more Christians saw church as an impediment to their relationship to Jesus. This awful cult could then be abandoned, one churchgoer at a time.

  • @Kendrick,

    “waste so much time….fighting against a God that they admit themselves doesn’t exist!”

    Not funny.
    It isn’t God I’m fighting against – it is the people who believe in god.


    Religion kills: “Homosexuals must die” Pastor Robbie Gallaty
    Religion kills: “America is the great Satan” – Osama bin laden
    Religion kills: “Slay them” – Q’uran

    Religion is frivolous; “thou shalt not masturbate”
    Religion is stupid; “Creationism makes planes fly”
    Religion is expensive; Al Queda, Osama Bin Laden, Hamas, Zionism, The Vatican, David Koresh, Pat Robertson

    Religion is a joke; “Bats are birds” (Leviticus)
    Religion is dangerous: “Execute them” – Jesus (Luke 19:27)
    Religion is poisonous: “Creationism makes medicine work”
    Religion is a lie: “Many people rose from the dead” (Matthew 27:51-53)

    Religion destroys critical thought: “You just have to believe”
    Religion destroys critical thought: “People can live inside a fish for 3 days”
    Religion encourages mental illness: “God turned into a cracker for you”

    Religion encourages mental illness: “Your sickness is caused by your sin”
    Religion encourages mental illness: “Hate your mother” – Jesus (Luke 14:26)
    Religion encourages mental illness: “Hate your life” – Jesus (Luke 14:26)
    Religion cheapens life: “Die for me” – Jesus (Matthew 16:24)

    No wonder Charles Schultz was an Atheist.
    Charlie Brown had enough trouble
    functioning in society without all that BUNK!

  • @Karen,

    “You sound as strident and inflexible”

    There is a war on Separation of Church and state. I don’t have millions of dollars to fight against the Koch Brothers, Fox News and the rest so I’m speaking out against Christianity instead.

    If you want your faith-based programs to over-run the government you should know where that will lead.

    And you should also know how millions of Atheists are going to feel about it.

    YOUR rights are being gutted:
    Hobby Lobby, Citizen’s United, War on women’s right, war against gay marriage rights, Creationism to replace all science education…

    Christianity is a despicable enough as it is – and now the churches have over-reached their rightful place and pushed Jesus nonsense on the entire country.


    SEPTEMBER 4, 2014

    Since when do we allow this in America????
    This is The Taliban! Sharia Law for crying out loud!

  • @Joe,

    “The biggest Christian group resides inside China: 300 Million and growing everyday….Why don’t you take a run at them?”

    Yes and it should scare you to death!

    History has repeatedly shown
    that large populations of Christians are only a whisker away from committing mass murders.

    The Taiping Rebellion – millions of Christians slaughtered 45 million people to protect the holy name of Jesus!

    The Rwandan Catholic movement slaughtered 800,000 people. Priests and Nuns took part in slaughtering with machetes.

    You should be shuddering to think what those Christians in China will do without the Separation of Church and State to protect the others.
    ONLY AMERICA has the necessary protection to stop people from slaughtering in the name of religion. Did you know that?!

    “Bring to me those enemies of mine — execute them in front of me.” – JESUS (luke 19:27)

    Shame on you. This is primitive nonsense.

  • I’m so sorry to read about what happened. Unfortunately, child abuse flourishes in religious communities because it provides a cover. All too often they sweep it under the rug. Secular society, on the other hand, holds abusers accountable; churches hide the evidence because they worry about “hurting the cause of christ”. This is why child abuse is so widespread in religious communities of all faiths; even Ultra-Orthodox Jews circle the wagons and try to keep the law out of it. It needs to be stopped, and religious communities and others who know about abuse but fail to report it must be prosecuted. As well as sexual abuse, there’s also spiritual abuse which needs to be stamped out – shame and fear indoctrination, amongst other methods.

  • backfire

    You had a spiritual experience where you sensed God in his creation. That is good. But if you experience is only that you will never go any farther in knowing God. For that you need a map – the Word of God.

    CS Lewis Says it best:
    I remember once when I had been giving a talk to the R.A.F., an old, hard-bitten officer got up and said, `I’ve no use for all that stuff. But, mind you, I’m a religious man too. I know there’s a God. I’ve felt Him out alone in the desert at night: the tremendous mystery. And that’s just why I don’t believe all your neat little dogmas and formulas about Him. To anyone who’s met the real thing they all seem so petty and pedantic and unreal.

    Now in a sense I quite agreed with that man. I think he had probably had a real experience of God in the desert. And when he turned from that experience to the Christian creeds, I think he really was turning from something real to something less real. In the same way, if a man has once looked at the Atlantic from the beach, and then goes and looks at a map of the Atlantic, he also will be turning from something real to something less real: turning from real waves to a bit of coloured paper. But here comes the point. The map is admittedly only coloured paper, but there are two things you have to remember about it. In the first place, it is based on what hundreds and thousands of people have found out by sailing the real Atlantic. In that way it has behind it masses of experience just as real as the one you could have from the beach; only, while yours would be a single glimpse, the map fits all those different experiences together. In the second place, if you want to go anywhere, the map is absolutely necessary. As long as you are content with walks on the beach, your own glimpses are far more fun than looking at a map. But the map is going to be more use than walks on the beach if you want to get to America.

    Don’t stay standing looking at the grad canyon, you can go much further in knowing God, do not blow off the knowledge of Him in his word.

  • northstarMN

    That is certainly one way to look at the situation. Religion is the problem here. Not Christianity. Have any of the theology elites dared to see this as American people being just plain fed up with the modern use of the pulpit? Something infected our Christian communities that has caused the pastoral leaders to selfishly brand their niche and views on topics that were clearly stated thousands of years ago. It is nothing more than a form of blasphemy. Homosexuality should not even be discussed in sermons unless it is to explain they are seen by God the same as everyone else.

    Since when did Jesus say to single out segments of our society and automatically condemn them to hell? Everyone lives in sin whether you like it or not. Salvation is NOT just for those a church or society deems acceptable. Remember Mary Magdalene was a flipping prostitute and was one of Jesus’s closest companions?

    I dont think this shows there is a problem that people are becoming more secular. I think this shows the people’s disgust with our Christian institutions and their refusal to identify with what they decide to preach.

    They know they don’t need these organizations to be saved. So to hell with them. Literally. Christianity is a personal relationship with God. And when in our everyday lives we know and love people that happen to be gay, how can you trust a church that doesn’t consider salvation important enough for certain people? Especially when everyone lives in sin everyday of their pathetic and small human lives? How does a church fulfill its duty to spread salvation through Jesus Christ honorably when they tell people they are not welcome because of a specific part of their life they don’t like? How is that compassion? How is that godly? How is that not in itself sinful?

    I am a Christian, but I can’t stand going to my own church anymore. I don’t need to be sold a bag of goods that A. Is not good. And B. Has absolutely nothing to with being a Christian or being saved.

  • SPDudley

    You’ve hit the mark better than many here. The so-called “churchless” like myself want to be part of church and community, but the narcissism of the modern-day evangelical leaders (and not just the TV ones like Osteen and Mars Hills) prevent this. There is so much focus on mega-church pastors and their own doctrines, not to mention that many of these megachurches enforce doctrine at the expense of liberty, that there’s very little for the parishioner to do if he disagrees with anything. Don’t believe in the rapture? You’re a heretic, somehow, and therefore not entitled to acceptance by the church and its members.

    Many get frustrated and leave, but there’s nothing else out there to go to. Catholics are too dogmatic and legalistic in other fashions. Modern-day Protestants are sell-outs to the liberal state, more worried about their political positions than focusing on what the Word actually is telling them. Alternatively there’s a leftover mixed-bag of either strongly legalistic groups such as LDS and JW, or very, very “spiritual” ones who are 99% emotion in expression, or you go to some sort of Eastern-type or polytheistic religion altogether, which is a gigantic step backwards. That’s all of the choices you have today, and for those of us who want to follow in the faith but don’t want churcified BS there’s no where else to go but inward.

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  • Augustine Thomas

    You’re delusional. People who don’t attend church do almost zero charity. They also have higher rates of STDs, depression, suicide, crime, etc.

    The Church developed modern science. You secularists follow your own gods–the ones that led to Nazi Germany, Soviet Russia, Communist China and North Korea, etc.

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  • Augustine Thomas

    You’re confused. “Post-Christian” means people who were brought up as Christian or heavily influenced by being born in a society that was 80-90% religious Christian but now have no connection to a church whatsoever.
    I would agree that they’re often inflating the numbers of this group by adding in people who don’t belong there.
    I would add though that it doesn’t really matter. Only religious Christians have had an effect on society that is truly positive in the long term. (If you don’t believe me, try living in China, North Korea, India, Iran, or even Japan, which has the highest rates of depression and suicide due to faithlessness.)

  • Augustine Thomas

    “Believe [in no God] or else” -What atheists tell anyone who wants to be a part of academia

  • Augustine Thomas

    it makes sense**

  • Augustine Thomas

    The only people who are in to porn are secularists like yourself, who are addicted to it because you have no meaning beyond your own cheap, perverted desires.

  • Augustine Thomas

    Best get ready for North Korea in America if secularists take over!

  • Augustine Thomas

    Atheists have the highest rates of depression and suicide precisely because it’s impossible to find true meaning without God.
    You guys make yourselves so miserable pretending to be above Christianity.

  • Augustine Thomas

    Right.. Just like Soviet Russia and Nazi Germany “progressed” when they abandoned Christianity. You guys are so dangerous with your lunatic, Godless cult beliefs.

  • Augustine Thomas

    Christians developed the modern educational system, including the modern university system, modern science, the modern medical system and all the other trappings of modernity in the “Dark Ages”.
    You’re a brainwashed secularist who is completely ignorant of history.

  • Augustine Thomas

    You pretend to be all knowing, but you’re clearly too lazy to even understand what you claim to be above.
    You’re trying to tell me that murder, rape and theft aren’t things to apologize for?
    Human beings have free will. We can choose to deny God’s teachings, as you have done. That is something to be sorry for. I hope you realize this before your pathetic arrogance takes you all the way to the gates of Hell.

  • rodger


    If you don’t understand why, then you don’t understand the current political divide in America. Nor do you understand the ongoing struggle between religion and science

  • rodger

    Garbage. What a load of utter rot. I study psychology (and sociology) and review research from all over the world concerning some of the matters you touch on.

  • rodger

    *facepalm* You my friend are indoctrinated with absolute rot. And judging by your replies on this page you too appear to have issues with anger and control. Certainly not an example of the Christ I know from the bible.

  • rodger

    Name calling, Threats, fear, ignorance. Ahhh I see. Where is Jesus shinning in your example Augustine? Oh right. Its the other people’s fault your like this?

  • @Augustine Thomas,

    The most Catholic country in Africa exploded into genocide as priests, nuns and other Catholics ran into the forests and butchered 800,000 people with machetes.
    It was called the Rwandan Genocide in the early 1990s.

    Christian Genocides like this happen regularly and without notice.
    The Taiping Rebellion alone killed 45 MILLION non-christians.

    I’ll take no lectures from Christians on this subject.

    If your God exists, genocide must be his will.
    If he doesn’t exist, Christianity is just a bunch of indoctrinated victims.

    Even if your god existed it would not be worthy of worship – – especially since he is feels threatened by little old me for not believing in it.

    I don’t care what you believe.
    Just keep your disgusting jesus out of our laws!
    I’m fed up with brainless Evangelical leaders trying to destroy our separation of church and state.

  • Hitler’s Reich was a Christian enterprise.
    “Execute them in front of me” – JESUS (luke 19:27) from Hitler’s favorite parable of the Minas.

    The Vatican was the first organization to write up a peace treaty
    with the Third Reich Jew-killing Nazis in the 1933 Koncordat.
    The Pope knew the plan was to exterminate the devil from Europe – “The devil is the shape of the Jew” – Hitler, Mein Kampf, pp 67

    “My Lord Jesus is a soldier for God, He knew how to treat those Jews when he cleared them from the Temple” – Hitler

    You are not well versed in religion, Hitler, Stalin (who was a seminarian) or Pol Pot (Theraveda Buddhist) or Hirohito (cult of the sun god and the kamikazee warriors)

    I guess you just don’t understand what Atheism is.

  • After reading these responses, I can say without a doubt, that I have never encountered such collective ignorance and bigotry… this especially from the atheist/ anti-religion crowd. As I get closer to 70 years old, I am so thrilled that I am not going to have to inherit the world that these intellectual jerk offs are now constructing for future generations.

    As a rule, I don’t give a damn what peoples believe about religion; that’s their business. But to assert that religion, especially Christianity, is the font of all evil in human history shows an appalling lack of education, not to mention a total lack of critical thinking. How do I know this? Well, I’m going to blow my horn here and say I have some good credentials. Majors in history and psychology, which includes one bachelor, two masters, and one doctorate. So I can say without reservation that these anti-religious hysterics have their heads up their collective asses.

    Any atheist who is worth his salt, if he has any education or intelligence, knows that Christianity is the underpinning of Western Civilization. It was the Catholic Church in particular, that saved the collective knowledge of classical civilization, and expressed it again through theology, philosophy, ethics, architecture, and of course incredible art.Without the Church, there would have been no Renaissance. Without the Church, and the rise of the universities, there would have been no creation of the scientific method.

    Again,being an atheist or a believer does not automatically confer intellect or knowledge. But historical truth is historical truth, and nothing can change it.

    So many millenials lacking a religion should come as no surprise; serious religious instruction died about fifty years ago. Why should a young person believe what they’ve never been taught? As far as knowing any history or much of anything else except marketing or business, these kids’ parents have been getting screwed paying extortionate tuition, just so their kids can be as ignorant as they were when they first got their acceptance letters from Behemoth University.

    My suggestion. Destroy your goddamned cell phones, start reading worthwhile books (get an intellectual mentor if you must), and then you’ll have a right to voice an opinion.

  • You may be right that Religious fanatics like ISIS are not very depressed, but I don’t know why you would recommend Jihad as a cure for depression. Oh, right – because faith is always so good.

  • @Mark,

    Nonsense. Most of what you say is completely non-sequiter.

    All religions are a disaster to civilization and they must fade away.
    Your argument in favor of Christianity’s role is neither true, nor useful to the main question.

    For example: The great and brilliant pyramids and culture of ancient Egypt and the building of the library of Alexandria were inspired by the religion of the Egyptian Book of the Dead and the Gods Osiris and Isis among others.

    Christianity burned that library, and its contribution was to replace those gods with other gods.

    None of this proves that Osiris or Isis or Jesus or Yahweh or any other God is the true god. In fact there is still no evidence for any god.
    Sorry you defend the horrors of Jesus, Yahweh and Allah. They have brought only misery to the world.

  • Shawnie5

    Christians did not burn the Library of Alexandria. It was destroyed before Christ was ever born.

    Don’t you ever get tired of being Exhibit A?

  • frankie

    I’m a churchless Christian. If iI could find a church near me that preaches God’s plan of salvation, I would call it home. Mega churches, like Lakewood, don’t even own a bible.

  • Shawnie5

    “As far as knowing any history or much of anything else except marketing or business, these kids’ parents have been getting screwed paying extortionate tuition, just so their kids can be as ignorant as they were when they first got their acceptance letters from Behemoth University.”

    Thank YOU, Mark. My husband and I are both history buffs and are constantly dismayed by the ignorance of this critical discipline that is so prevalent today. With our own kids we have tried to pick up the slack left by the schools — but there is quite a lot of slack to pick up. Unfortunately many around here had no one to do the same for them.

  • The Great God Pan

    While it is conceivable that Adolf Hitler was privately an atheist (according to the Christians who claim to be able to read the mind of a dead man), he was publicly a Christian and used Christianity to encourage the people of Germany to aid him in perpetrating the Holocaust. There can be no doubt that anti-Semitism is historically rooted in Christianity and that the Holocaust was motivated by Christian hatred of Jews.

    Adolf Hitler:
    “My feelings as a Christian points me to my Lord and Savior as a fighter. It points me to the man who once in loneliness, surrounded by a few followers, recognized these Jews for what they were and summoned men to fight against them and who, God’s truth! was greatest not as a sufferer but as a fighter. .., How terrific was His fight for the world against the Jewish poison. To-day, after two thousand years, with deepest emotion I recognize more profoundly than ever before the fact that it was for this that He had to shed His blood upon the Cross. As a Christian I have no duty to allow my self to be cheated, but I have the duty to be a fighter for truth and justice…”

  • Dear Max –

    You’re not listening to what I’m saying. That’s because you fanatical atheists are as closed minded as some fundamentalist Holy Rollers who believes the world is 6,000 years old.

    First of all Max, all civilzations are built on their respective religions. Whether it be Christian, Islamic, Vedic, Sinic or whatever. , the The philosophical, religious, artistic, economic. social and political foundations of any given civilization are built on a religious myth distinctive to that civilization. The distinctive myth of our civilization is that if you can’t prove something by the scientific method, it can’t exist. By the way, that myth can’t be proven either.

    Max, since you’re obviously uneducated, i would suggest the writings of j.ER.R. Tolkien, and Christopher Dawson, historian an Harvard.

    I never said great civilizations didn’t exist before Christianity. Did I say that Max? Of course not, but you’re not listening. You have a wild hare up your ass about religion, so your intellectual capacities have gone South. Reminds me of the Snake Handler Pentecostals in West Virginia.

    No Max. The Christianityy did not burn the Library of Alexandria. It was the Islamic armies who did that. Back to school for you Max.

    How can you compare the polytheistic religious system of Egypt to ancient Israelite religion or Christianity? Like comparing apples and oranges, Max.

    Max, you need an education. If you graduated from an acredited university, your parents really took a hosing on the tuition. You got zippity-doo-dah out of it. By the way, what was your major?

    You’re not stupid; if you were, there’d be no hope for you. Since you’re only an ignoramus, you can go to a book store or a library, and learn what you didn’t obviously learn in college.


  • GoddessFourWinds

    Do you know why there are only FOUR Gospels? “Of the many gospels written in antiquity, only four gospels came to be accepted as part of the New Testament, or canonical. An insistence upon there being a canon of four gospels, and no others, was a central theme of Irenaeus of Lyons, c. 185. In his central work, Adversus Haereses Irenaeus denounced various early Christian groups that used only one gospel, such as Marcionism which used only Marcion’s version of Luke, or the Ebionites, who seem to have used an Aramaic version of Matthew as well as groups that embraced the texts of newer writings, such as the Valentinians .
    Irenaeus declared that the four he espoused were the four “Pillars of the Church”: “it is not possible that there can be either more or fewer than four” he stated, presenting as logic the analogy of the four corners of the earth and the four winds.

    So, yeah. There’s the “logic.”

  • Byron

    Nice post.

    Thanks for sharing your story. I appreciate your post and allowing us a glimpse into your experience.

    These posts lead me to wonder what “God” are folks talking about?
    Santa Claus?

    What is God?

    Tell me what god you don’t believe in and there’s a good chance I don’t believe in that god either.

    The decline in Christianity, particularly, American Christian/Religion is a good thing, IMO. It seems to be more about a “belief/voting system” versus a way to live and be fully human.

    I don’t have a problem with the Jesus revealed in scripture as I understand scripture, what it is, etc. My hang-up is with those who claim to follow him (or “believe in” him) for it seems that many have made it about an evacuation plan for the “next life” instead of a way of living… of becoming human in this life.

  • Byron

    This is well-done.

    Max is a fundamentalist.

  • “Christians did not burn the Library of Alexandria.”

    I know better than this and I regretted posting it the moment I pressed ‘post comment’. Of course you are correct.

  • @Mark,

    “you fanatical atheists are as closed minded as some fundamentalist Holy Rollers who believes the world is 6,000 years old.”

    Yes. I am fanatical about the separation of church and state
    and I am sick and tired of Christians telling me that the women in my family cannot get access to simple procedures because of people like you who fund these INHUMAN Evangelical FAR RIGHT WING Lobbies!

    “First of all Max, all civilzations are built on their respective religions. Whether it be Christian, Islamic, Vedic, Sinic or whatever.”
    Congratulations. I guess that means Allah is real!?

    “The distinctive myth of our civilization is that if you can’t prove something by the scientific method, it can’t exist.”

    I Don’t claim that God is impossible – I make no such claim. But I don’t believe it to be real and to hell with anyone who tells me by some authority that it is real. You have no evidence.

    “since you’re obviously uneducated, i would suggest the writings of j.ER.R. Tolkien,”
    Interesting because I read the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings trilogy when I was 10 years old and those books were not written by J.ER.R Tolkein but by someone completely different named J.R.R. Tolkein!

    “You have a wild hare up your ass about religion”
    Yes, because it makes people says such stupid things.

    “so your intellectual capacities have gone South.”
    Well, if you have no evidence for Gods you can always blame the messenger for being an idiot. So where is your evidence that God is real?

    “Reminds me of the Snake Handler Pentecostals in West Virginia.”
    What do you have against people who believe in the bible? Are you telling me the Bible is wrong about how the holy spirit will protect people from snake poison?

    “Christianityy did not burn the Library of Alexandria.”
    That was a mistake I made because I was too eager to press ‘post comment’ – I would have edited it out.

    “How can you compare the polytheistic religious system of Egypt to ancient Israelite religion or Christianity?”
    Because Manure and [expletive deleted] are the same thing?

    “Max, you need an education.”
    Interesting. I was a Catholic for 44 years and taught some sunday school. I raised my kids in the Catholic church. I’ve been married for 27 years.
    I have two degrees from two different colleges.

    “your parents really took a hosing on the tuition.”
    Where is your evidence of a God? I’d like to know about your wasted education, now.

    “Since you’re only an ignoramus…”
    There. Did that feel good?

    “you can go to a book store or a library, and learn what you didn’t obviously learn in college.”
    Where is your evidence for a god? Did you find some in college?

    As an Atheist I say only this – “I do not believe that gods are real”
    If I am correct, then all of the work of Jesus is a disaster. All of Islam is a disaster. All of Judaism is a disaster.

    IF I am wrong and God exists I will want to know which one of the 50,000 gods of history is the true god – it is very important to show that evidence because if you do not find it, I will continue to rail against the evils of religion as none of them appear to be true:

    “The only true faith in God’s sight is Islam.” (Surah 3:19)
    “Fighting is obligatory for you, much as you dislike it.” (Surah 2:216)
    “Believers, take neither Jews nor Christians for your friends.” (Surah 5:51)

    “Cursed be he who does the Lords work remissly, cursed he who holds back his sword from blood.” (Jeremiah 48:10)
    “Seize all the non-believers and execute them before the LORD in broad daylight…” (Numbers 25:1-9)

    “To those who would not have me as their king, bring them to me and execute them in front of me” – JESUS (Luke 19:27)
    “I have come to bring fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! …what constraint I am under until it is completed! Do you think I came to bring peace on Earth? No, I tell you, but division.” – Jesus (Luke 12:49-51)
    “Jesus said…Except they repent of their deeds. I will kill her children with death.” (Rev:1:22)

    All of this is evil.

  • @Byron,

    Science: “There appears to be no god”
    Religion: “SHUT UP! SHUT UP!”

    Believe whatever you want – but keep your Jesus out of our laws.
    Separation of Church and State is under attack by the very same people who take the money out of your church basket.

    If you don’t care about what is true, fine.
    But the rest of us need a vacation from this superstitious garbage.

  • Rodger

    So, an evangelical research group are inflating the numbers. This survey was conducted by the Barna Group . The same people that found there wasn’t a significant gap in the morality of the average christian vs the average non christian.

    “Only religious Christians have had an effect on society that is truly positive in the long term” Source?

  • Rodger

    According to a recent survey by the Barna Group (the same Christian research group that did the survey in the article we are commenting on), 21% of Christian men say they have thought they were “addicted” to porn or said they weren’t sure. This is more than two times what non-Christian men said (10%). Interestingly, 64% of Christian men say they view porn at least once a month, but a higher percentage (71%) of non-Christian report doing this.

    @Augustine …. once again you prove yourself to be indoctrinated and dribbling rot

  • Rodger

    “Atheists have the highest rates of depression and suicide” What research is this from?

    You might like an article i recently read in ‘Scientific American Mind’ May/June 2012 ‘Is it Healthier To Be Religious?’ Page 58

  • Rodger

    I have studied Sociology and Psychology myself (and Marketing 20 years ago). I’m certainly not trying to convert anyone, nor push an agenda down anyones throat. Of course Christianity enabled a system in which people could live, grow, and succeed. I just argue that this particular ideology is becoming outdated and holding back western civilisation advancements. As a Political ideology Christianity is being used as a weapon. As well as this, my experiences with mental illness (and the experiences of many others) lead me to believe Christianity isn’t all that it’s believers (I am a former evangelical) perceive it to be.

    And if this here is the worst bigotry you’ve experienced then I must say, where have you been?

    BTW I read worthwhile books on my iPad and iPhone 😉

  • Rodger

    I couldn’t have put it better myself!

  • Simple Christian

    And then there are people who call themselves Christians, do not go to church, but believe very deeply that Christ is their savior, who died for their sins, rose from the dead as prescribed. That thru his grace and mercy we are saved. We actually read the Bible and rely on Christ in all things. You don’t need to go to church for that. Churches can be a great place to find fellowship and learn about Christ and what the Bible says, but they are also filled and led by sinners. Sinners who often hold themselves in higher esteem than their flock oand sometimes say things like “government corruption is worse than sin”. Sigh. Give me the Trinity and my Bible. The surveyors can gleen whatever they want from their stats. Maybe it will tell them that preachers should simply toss that silly old Bible since it is so full of rules nobody wants to hear about much less abide. Then we can make the Church of Me – – oh wait… already there.

  • Max –

    You just spent one helluva lot of time asking me to prove to you that God exists. I never even told you that I believed in God, or that I even had a religion. But you weren’t listening, were you?

    As I told you, what you believe is your business. I sure as hell am not going to waste my time trying to prove the existence of God to you, or anyone else. The existence or non-existence of God cannot be proven by the scientific method. If you think so, it definitely shows you don’t know very much about religion, and even less about science.

    Here’s the red flag, Max. You say you were a Catholic for forty-four years, and now you’re a frothing at the mouth atheist. I have my doubts. Anybody who invests that much emotional energy hating religion or any notion of the spiritual has some real investment in hating God. God’s real for a person like you.

    Forty-four years as a Catholic, taught Sunday school, and now you’re rabidly pissed?

    Get some help, Dude.

  • @Mark,

    “Anybody who invests that much emotional energy hating religion….”

    Okay. Well, I’ll remember that as ISIS beheads people in the name of Islam.
    And as Pastor Gallaty in Tennessee tells little children that their Gay fathers and brothers deserve to be killed. (Tennesee megachurch, Sept 14, 2014)

    You said, “Bigoted Atheists, jerk-offs, ignoramus….”

    And you know what? I didn’t sit by and let you get away with it.
    If it is not bigoted to preach Jesus to a non-believer
    It cannot be bigoted to preach Anti-Jesus to a believer.

    Unlike you, I actually care about the truth. I don’t lie to people.
    What is it like, telling children that Hell is real? How does it feel to lie like that?

    I would never expect you to prove a god to me – you can’t. And you should be ashamed that you defend its existence in the face of a world at the mercy of these despicable unfounded ‘faiths.’

    To defend Jesus as you tried to do is a to defend a monster. If you don’t know that, read your bible.

  • RandyC

    Dear SPDudley,
    Others who absolutely support you in going inward to your personal connection to the Divine exist. I would invite you to check out, or look for a Center for Spiritual Living in your community.

    Cheers to the seekers!

  • John McGrath

    @motherunit420 … Normally you can “get out” of the Catholic church and not be counted as a member by writing a letter to the local bishop where you were baptized asking for a formal disaffiliation from the church, requesting that your disaffiliation be put in writing. You wull then not be counted among the number of Cathoics and your relatives will not be able to arrange a Ctaholic funeral for you, although some priest will perform the outside of a church Catgholic funeral rite for anyone really. In some countries where money for church scholls come form teh government the bishops have stopped accepting disaffilaition requests so the government will continue to subsidize them on the basis of their membership. But in such cases you can threaten to sue or actually sue and you will get the letter. Bishops do not want people to know about the formal disaffilation process. In Germany, where the government collects taxes for the churches from baptized members it is important to get disaffilaited formally so that the government no longer collects the church tax from you.

  • GodofMoses

    You are happy that all the Jewish prophets and Jesus predicted a falling away from the faith before God’s final judgment? Here it is in plain English

    1. There is ONE God, He is the God of Israel…period

    2. Jesus is the Messiah. Notice All things come from the Jews

    3. There is Judgment for sin, always has and always will be until Judgment

    4. Seriously, Repent you don’t know how many days you have left on Earth, or before Judgment day (which ever comes first for you)

    You can debate until you are blue but these fact cannot be changed,

  • John McGrath

    The Bible remains fascinating as a literary document. it presents a number of concepts about the concept of God, most of them dysfunctional in the sense that if you believe that concept of God then you can easily become dysfunctional as a human being.

    The first dysfunctional concept of God is the God of the Garden of Eden. Believe in that God and you run the risk of believing that God will take care of us, make decisions for us, do for us what we ought to be doing for ourselves and others, etc. As I read the bible the Adama and Eve story is really a rejection of the concept of the God of Eden.

    Same for for the God of Abraham and Isac when the God orders that Abraham kill his son. Religionists normally read this story as a wonderful example of being obedient to God in all things. Even as a child I found this type of preaching repellant . Clearly, from a literary point of virw, the concept of God that says God is pleased with human sacrifice is being rejected by Abraham’s human and enlightening conscience. The story is a metaphor for rejecting any concept of God that orders harm to other human beings. But the churches don’t preach it what way. Just one example of what’s wrong with the churches and their fondness for concepts of God that render people into dysfunctional human beings.

    The preachers do not know how to read literature. That’s the first of their failures that lead them to organize ignorance and ill will into something virtuous.

  • GodofMoses

    You are happy that all the Jewish prophets and Jesus predicted a falling away from the faith before God’s final judgment? Here it is in plain English

    1. There is ONE God, He is the God of Israel…period

    2. Jesus is the Messiah. Notice All things come from the Jews

    3. There is Judgment for sin, always has and always will be until Judgment

    4. Seriously, Repent you don’t know how many days you have left on Earth, or before Judgment day (which ever comes first for you)

  • John McGrath

    The words of Jesus to Mary do not have to be read as a rebuke, but as the plaint of a good Jewish boy who would do anything for his mother, but really wishes she wouldn’t ask him to do some things. But do note that Jesus – God to Christians – promptly obeys this woman who wants him to do a kind deed for a neighbor. What is really going on in that story? Is she teaching am immature Jesus about what religion should really be about?

    Read the story in a literary way. it is both funny and touching. You could easily read it as as demonstrating that women are both stronger, more confident and kinder than men, even the Man God Jesus.

  • Fourth Valley

    Yep!! That’s what “Post-Christian” means.

    But this data groups ALL non-Christian religious folks into the Post-Christian group.

    For converts like myself?? Makes sense.

    For a practitioner of say, Midewiwin, whose family has been practicing that faith long before Christians arrived in the new world, it does not make sense. In order to be accurate, the data should separate the converts from the never-been Christians who are parts of other faiths.

  • @John McGrath,

    I don’t deny you the right to interpret the Bible any way you want to.
    But it is junk to me.

    God excoriates women in 670 different places in the Bible: from the rib in genesis through Jesus’ contempt for the harlot in Revelation: “I will KILL HER CHILDREN WITH DEATH”

    God hates them. Christianity puts them on the level of men’s servants.
    Given how disgusted God is with women, it is clear that he feels creating them was a particularly bad mistake.

    The Bible is not just man made stories, it is profoundly and dangerously MALE-made, with all the appropriate hatreds one would expect of barbaric illiterates.
    If you have a daughter or a mother or an aunt or a grandmother – this bible hates them. Dangerous nonsense.

  • Stefan Stackhouse

    Jesus said there would be goats mixed in with the sheep. If the goats are now getting out, is that really such a bad thing? Too many churches have been little more than social clubs for a long time now, with those taking their Christian faith seriously either ignored or all but invited to leave. Much of the criticisms that the non-believers make against the churches have less to do with the sincerity of the true believers than they have with the hypocritical fakes in our midst. Smaller and fewer churches filled with a higher percentage of genuine Christians might not actually be a bad thing at all.

  • Josh M

    You referenced the harlot in the book the revelation to bolster your anti-women biblical claim. The book of Revelation is a highly symbolic prophetic book, and the reference to the harlot is not meant to be taken for an actual women. That also goes along with the references to her children.
    The claim that God hates women is highly questionable. The Bible says “wives submit to your husbands”. It also says that men should love women as they love themselves, and that they should act toward them as Christ acted toward the church. Btw, he sacrificed his life for the church. And how could God feel “particularly bad” for creating women when, in the Genesis creation story, after creating her said “and it was very good.” A true godly man would love women as himself, protect them, and sacrifice himself for them. If I had a daughter, my best hope and prayer would be that she find herself a godly man who follows the teaching of Christ.

  • @Stefan,

    “Much of the criticisms that the non-believers make against the churches have less to do with the sincerity of the true believers than they have with the hypocritical fakes in our midst.”

    I don’t see any hypocrisy at all.
    Christian are doing exactly as Jesus instructed!

    “Follow the commands…” Jesus (Mark 10:19)
    “Kill Homosexuals” – (Leviticus 20:13)

    “the only remedy for homosexuals is that they be put to death.”
    SEPTEMBER 4, 2014

    That is not hypocrisy – that is compliance.

  • Pingback: Secularism grows as more U.S. Christians turn ‘churchless’ | Truth2Freedom's Blog()

  • Christianity has become a way for some people to make a living and unwelcoming to anyone who expects something more. Too bad. It could do a lot of good.

  • @JoshM,

    “The claim that God hates women is highly questionable.”

    Well let’s settle that one, shall we?

    “Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord [as a slave]…wives should submit to their husbands in everything.” (Ephesians 5:22-24)
    “Slaves, be subject to your masters with all reverence, not only to those who are good and equitable but also to those who are PERVERSE.” (1 Peter 2:18)


    2:22 Eve created from Adam’s rib.
    3:16 Eve cursed with painful childbirth and domination by husband.
    4:19 Man marries two wives. Wives may not have two husbands.
    12:13-19 Abraham prostitutes wife.
    19:1-8 Rape virgin daughters instead of males.
    19:26 Lot’s wife turned into pillar of salt for disobeying god.
    19:30-38 Lot impregnates his two daughters while drunk.
    20:2-12 Abraham prostitutes wife – again.
    25:1-6 Keeping many concubines is OK.

    20:17 A Wife is property interchangeable with cattle.
    21:4 Wife and children belong to master – wife has no say over children.
    21:7-11 OK to sell daughters. Female slaves can be used for sex. Polygamy permitted. Unwanted female slaves can be set “free” without payment of money. Men may not be used for women’s sexual pleasure.
    22:18 Kill witches – all witches are all women.

    12:1-8 Childbirth unclean, Women need to make atonement after childbirth.
    15:19-32 Menstruating women are unclean.
    20:10-16 Death penalty for homosexuality and various sexual transgressions.
    21:7 Priests must not marry prostitutes or divorcees.
    21:9 Burn daughters.
    21:13-14 Priest must marry virgin, not “used” woman.

    1:2 Census lists only men – women do not count.
    5:11-31 Fidelity test for women only.
    30:1-16 Woman’s vow invalid unless approved by her father or husband.
    31:17-18 Kill all except virgins. Keep virgins for yourselves.
    12 Miriam punished for rebuking Moses.

    20:14 Take women, livestock as plunder.
    22:13-21 Stone non-virgin bride.
    22:23-24 Stone rapist and rape victim.
    22:28 Rape victim must marry rapist; rape victim’s father compensated for depreciation of his property.
    25:11-12 Cut woman’s hand for touching foe’s penis.
    24:1-5 Man can “send” wife from HIS house. Man must not marry “used” woman.
    28:18 The FRUIT of your womb will be cursed – eclectic “pro-life” verse!

    5:30 Women are spoils of war.
    14:20 Samson gives wife to another man.
    16:1 Samson visits prostitute.
    CH 19 Concubine pack-raped and butchered.
    21:10-12 Slaughtered all inc. women and children. Saved virgins for wives.
    21:21 Abducted girls for wives.

    1 SAMUEL
    15:2-3 Attack Amalekites, kill men, women, children and livestock.
    22:19 Kill all inc. infants and livestock.
    21:4-5 Men avoid defilement with women.
    2 SAMUEL
    5:13 David took many wives and concubines.
    CH 13 Ammon rapes his own sister.
    16:21-22 Absalom sleeps with his father’s concubines.
    6:20-23 Mischal punished with bareness.

    1 KINGS
    11:3 Solomon had 700 wives and 300 concubines.

    2 KINGS
    9:30-37 Brutal murder of Jezebel.

    15:13 Put to death unbelievers.
    11:21 Hoards of wives and concubines.

    CH 1-2 Queen Vashti dethroned for disobedience; setting “bad” example to all other women.

    51:5 Sinful since conception.
    127:3 Sons are heritage from god.
    137:9 Seizes infants and dashes them against rocks.

    CH 5 Beware of wicked women!
    CH 7 More of the above.
    6:24 As above.
    31:3 Do not waste strength on women.

    3:16-26 Lord punishes haughty women.
    4:4 Filthy women.
    13:16 Ravish wives, dash infants.
    19:16 Will be like women! (insult to Egyptians)

    9:6-7 Slaughter all including children.
    CH 16 Prostitutes, stoning, promiscuity…
    CH 23 Tale of two adulterous sisters – reads like the script of a pornographic film. I bet you weren’t told this story at Sunday school!

    13:16 Rip pregnant women, dash little ones. (Another “pro-life” verse!)

    3:4… wanton lust of a harlot… prostitution… witchcraft.
    3:5 I will lift your skirts over your face!
    3:13… Your troops are all women. (insult to Nineveh)

    5:32 Husband can divorce wife for adultery. Can wife divorce husband for the same?
    CH 25 Sexist tale of ten virgins.

    2:22 Mary must be purified after birth of Jesus.
    2:49 Jesus rebukes his mother.

    11:2-10… Woman created for man.
    14:34 Women must be silent in churches.

    5:22-24 Wives must submit to husbands in everything.

    3:18 Wives submit to husbands.
    3:22 Slaves must obey masters in everything.

    2:11-15 Woman must not have authority – she must be silent. Women can be saved with childbearing.
    5:9-10 Widows should be faithful to husband and must wash saints’ feet.

    1 PETER
    2:18 Slaves submit to masters, even masters who are harsh.
    3:1 Wives submit.
    3:5-6 Sarah calls husband master.

    CH 17 Destroy great prostitute.
    14:4…they did not DEFILE themselves with women but kept themselves pure

    This is a disgrace to humanity.
    And it is time to abandon every word of it.

  • If it is isn’t clear that God hates women, I can provide 200 more examples. (at least).

    Clearly all of this was created by ancient, primitive, knuckle-dragging male barbarians.

  • KidMD

    “It is a club you can’t get out of.”

    Sure you can: just do something to get yourself excommunicated.

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  • Josh M

    Thanks for the response. It looks as though you spent a lot of time looking up all these verses. I do truly appreciate the time and effort you put into your responses (past ones included). Even though I strongly disagree with pretty much all your comments, I do appreciate them.

    I will NOT do a point-by-point rebuttal of all of these verses. Firstly, because of time and length it will take, but most importantly because a lot of these really can be combined into one classification because they are basically the same thing.
    The most important thing to remember is that these books record history and not divine commandments. This may seem like a cop-out or cherry picking to an atheist like yourself, but I think it is quite clear in the literature. Especially in the “chronicle” books ( Kings, Chronicles, Esther, Judges, etc.) These are books that record history, not commandments from God. And like all history books, it does not follow logically that the author is a supporter, I.e. one can write a book describing the events of 9/11 without being a supporter of the people that committed that horrific crime. Keeping this in mind, I can rebut all passages you mentioned about multiple wives by all these kings and leaders by mentioning that this is never commanded by God and is actually a practice that goes against his will for humankind.
    Also, a lot of these verses, and the passages that they are in, give evidence, I think, that God views both man and woman equally. Yes, it is true that Eve is cursed after the sin in the garden, but so is Adam. Yes, they were different punishments, but they did both get punished. Sure there is disagreement on who “got it worse”, but I don’t know how that would “prove” your point. You also mention Lots wife, Jezebel, Miriam, witches, etc. But can you really make the claim that they were punished BECAUSE they were women. Obviously not; they were punished because they disobeyed/sinned. The commandment not to look back (Lot’s wife) was given to the whole all Lot family. I have no problem saying that if Lot looked back, he would have turned into a pillar of salt. In this sense, gender didn’t matter, it was the obedience, or lack thereof which mattered. On Jezebel, she was just an awful person, not an awful women, just person. She corrupted the king of Israel and tried to get the Israelites to sin. The brutality of her murder can’t be use as a general rule that applies to ALL women. And yes, Miriam was punished for rebuking Moses. But so were men. I’m thinking of the time when God opened the ground and all those men and their families died. The point is, keeping with my original point about equality, that both the men and the women got punished, not just Miriam. And even if was true that only women are “witches”, this is to strict an interpretation to take. This also applies to Sooth-Sayers and divinators (they all would practicing “witchcraft”) and those could definitely be men (I’m thinking about the Balam/Barak story). The whole point of this should be clear. God doesn’t punish women because he hates them. He punishes them because of their disobedience. If you’re right then I can use the same tactic to claim that God also hates men because he punishes them for their disobedience also. Which would do nothing for your claim, since it once again just be proof that God punishes evil-doing regardless of gender. This would also apply to stories about mass slaughter like the Amalekites. God commands to kill everything: man, women, child, animals, food. We could discuss this particular event at another time if you want, but I just don’t see this as strengthening your case that “God hates women”. God punishes all sinners equally.

    You also had many references to all of times where the Israelites “took women/virgins as wives”. This really has to be taken in a complete historical setting which I personally cannot do justice to. I reference you to some of what Paul Copan has to say on this subject. (Videos on youtube) This is his field of expertise and study. What I will say on this, just briefly, is that you have to compare this with ancient Hebrew law. In Hebrew law, whenever an Israelite took a non-Hebrew wife, he was not allowed to sleep with his new wife for a month. This month was to given to the women to mourn for the loss of her family and nation. But after this month, they were treated and given the same treatment and rights as natural Hebrew-born wives.

    New Testament verses. Yes, I would think that women could divorce their husband for infidelity on their part, I see nothing the scripture to support otherwise, do you?
    This was a parable given by Jesus about being always ready when the Lord comes. The virgins in the parable just reflect the Jewish wedding tradition. How do you read sexism into this?
    Paul and Peter refer to themselves as slaves (both are men). All the children of God, are called to be “slaves” to God, their master. As a side note, the same word in Greek that is translated as “slave” in some editions, can also be used as “servant” and does not differentiate between voluntary servant hood and involuntary servant hood (it’s the same Greek word).
    We completely disagree on the interpretation of 1 Timothy 2. I would just ask that you don’t judge the scriptures based on your own interpretation (an atheist interpretation) of this passage. As a general rule, you should criticize only a view which is held by your opponent. Otherwise, it could easily be taken as a straw man argument.
    Jesus himself washed his saint’s feet.

  • Shawnie5

    X2. Thank you.

  • “As a general rule, you should criticize only a view which is held by your opponent.”

    Yes. My opponent is The Bible.
    Yahweh is very woman-hating. Women are nothing but property to Yahweh, like owning a pig.

    God hates women. No way around that.

  • vodray

    Karla, You say “When it comes to the Bible you have to submit to it cause that’s what the bible says to do.” The Bible calls you a second class citizen who cannot hold authority over a man and must remain silent (1 Timothy 2:12) among other passages. Do you REALLY think you’re a second class citizen? Your bible does. Perhaps you should go sit over in the corner and remain silent while men are debating.

  • Nrman

    I would like to suggest that you take a look at the Episcopal Church because it does not deny any of the five items that you list in your Comment. You might find the book Lent Is Not Rocket Science interesting and eye opening about how some Christians view science. The author, W. Nicholas Knisely, is an astronomer, physicist, and Episcopal Bishop. Believe it or not many of us do not view cavemen riding on the backs of dinosaurs. There is also a pamphlet entitled The Episcopal Church A Faith for Thinking People. I would suggest that you not view Christianity only through reports in some of the news media because they often highlight the small minded because it makes interesting reading. I hope that you find these suggestions helpful. I trust you will find them eye-opening.

  • Kim

    People deny God not because there is no evidence (there is PLENTY), but because God gets on the way of their lifestyle. Simple.

  • rob

    not worried revelations tells us Satan looses and Jesus wins .

  • rob


    which is real delusional and dangerous ..

    its what causes family break ups murder and all sorts of bad things..

    as America becomes less Christian were seeing kids killing kids in schools
    were seeing Atheists and Muslim hate crimes . every thing from OKLAHOMA bombings TO Boston bombings..

  • @Kim,

    “evidence (there is PLENTY)”

    Oh, yeah?
    Gosh. Don’t keep me hanging on. Let’s hear it.


    I thought YOU chose Jesus by YOURSELF to be YOUR GOD for YOUR LIFE and for Your Afterlife !?

  • Karin

    Prior to the singular gods, which the christian god falls in with, there were belief systems that contained multiple gods. Prior to any of these gods there was a belief system known as animism. In all these belief systems, neither god existed prior to being created in the minds of man. This is what we know of our history. Readily available for anyone wishing to do their research. The rational mind would confidently accept the notion that none of these gods actually exist. No evidence and only held up by the materials written ages ago to reinforce the belief. As well as, held up by those that can’t let go and where they continue the spread of bull sh**.
    In other words, the human species has been around for 100 (thousand)+ years. In which christianity has been around for 2 (thousand) years. Hardly a statement of authenticity. IE; This god suddenly appears…. Right after the thousands of gods that proceeded its imagined charactership.

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  • Josh M

    @ Max

    I understand the draw to anthropomorphize the Bible, but it would be a mistake to do so. An object cannot be an “opponent”. It would be clearer to say something along the lines of “I’m criticizing a view or teaching that is found in the Bible”, not the Bible itself.

    Thanks for quoting me, but I think you should have paid further attention to the sentence that came right after that one: “Otherwise, it could easily be taken as a straw man argument.” Because that’s exactly what’s happening here. Let me draw your attention to what you’re trying to do. Basically, what you’re doing is saying “This is how I interpret these various verses (God hates women), therefore this is what the Bible teaches.” This, I believe, is a very good example of a straw man argument for two reasons. One, this line of thinking is logically invalid. It follows no known law of logical inference to say “This is how I read this, therefore this is what it means”. It’s clearly possible that you could just be reading it/interpreting it wrongly. Case in point, you believe that I’m interpreting these verses wrongly. And by doing that you implicitly agree with me that an interpretation cause be POSSIBLY wrong. But, if mine is possibly wrong, then yours also can be possibly wrong. And because of this fact it is illogical to make the inference “This is how I interpret these various verses (God hates women), therefore this is what the Bible teaches.”
    Second reason this is invalid is because you haven’t given any solid evidence that God does, in fact, hate women. Now, you listed a whole bunch of verses (out of context, let me add), but none of these verses explicitly say “God hates women”. Most of these verses describe punishments that God levied on women, but he also punishes men the same way. So I’m not even sure where you can draw out even an implicit claim that would support your position from these verses. Also, you list out where the Israelites treated women wrongly, but you haven’t given any evidence that God commanded these. In fact, it was God himself who handed down all these punishment on the whole of Israel for their disobedience, which is evidence that Israel wasn’t following God’s commands. So, it also illogical to claim “The Hebrews did it, therefore God commanded it.” This also doesn’t follow any law of logical inference.

    And besides, you haven’t given any explicit verse that says “God hates women” anyway. Your claims, if true, are only implicit interpretations of these verses. But there are numerous passages and verses which explicitly state otherwise. In the Proverbs it says “God loves those who he disciplines” Now from your own verses that you stated, you should agree that God does discipline women (as he does men). Another explicit claim found in the Bible is “for God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son…” It doesn’t say that God loved man; it says that God loved the world, women included (the plan of salvation is available to women also). It also says the a man’s prayers would be hindered if he didn’t show love to his wife. Now, I have a question: if God truly does see women as property and hates them, as you claim, why would he ignore the prayers if a husband who mistreating his wife? It is also a commandment given to support women and children, and by not doing so is a sin. How do you interpret these scriptures in light of your global claim that “God hates women?”

    Now you say “God hates women. No way around that”. Well, I think that there is a way around that; namely, proper biblical interpretation and not reading a verse out of context. There are also explicit verses claiming the opposite. What you are asking people to do is put more weight on implicit claims then the explicit claims. But why do that? It called implicit and explicit for a reason. Proper interpretation of any document, not just the Bible, is to relay on the explicit claims. And then the implicit claims should be in line with the explicit claims. This is just good hermeneutics.

    But it seems as though you made up your mind already. You believe that “God hates women” even in the face of counter-evidence to your claim. It is the whole evidence that should lead you. It would be inappropriate to only follow the evidence that will take you where you want to go.

  • JP

    Your point being? The age and number of fragments found doesn’t give the bible anymore legitimacy. One more point. Just because someone doesn’t believe in superstition doesn’t make that person hateful. You want stories of hate read your bible.

  • roman

    Btw, both Hitler and Stalin had moustache….that where real danger came from…those people with moustache clearly try to hide something at the very least….

    PS Hitler was not an atheist…Stalin probably was, although he was the one who restored the Russian orthodox church from nonexistence

  • Robert Demarest

    Not all modern Protestants have gone to the secular and religious liberal side. There are denominations that have held to orthodoxy and a true belief in God’s word. There are more of them each year and they tend to be smaller churches.
    There needs to be better education of the members. Too many of the old denominations have abandoned the means to teach. Catechism and Confessions are the ground of belief. Belief starts with knowledge. I see too many who cannot explain the basis of their belief. How does one know why they believe without a knowledge of what to believe? Far too many call themselves “spiritual” and act as though belief will come like a lightning bolt and ignore the sparks. The churches are failing in their mission to educate the ignorant. As long as churches think they are about making sandwiches to distribute and cans of food to collect they will fail. You might as well be climbing the Spanish Steps and kissing statues. The effect is the same.

  • Robert Demarest

    Many who have left did so becaue of poor leadership. The lifetime Elders have stultified practice. Some have no business in leadership. Thre is no discipline any longer. Men chosen to do the work of the church are slack and no one calls then to account. Some officers have been worked to death and left for health reasons or just to have a part of life that isn’t church related. Coming in early and staying late evry week because no one will step up to help. Don’t believe it? go to the next church work day and the next and see how few there are and how many are the same folks you saw the last time. The church is killing itself.

  • DSR

    This is largely the result of Christianity failing to modernize the way Judaism has which has atheist denominations. There is little in religious practice which runs counter to reason and science. We all need a community and some ritual in our lives. The main problem with Christianity is the belief part of it which gets into epistemological claims and arbitrary prescriptivism rather than focusing on aiding practitioners in developing their moral character with a community to support them in that effort which is what religion has always been about. I think most of the criticism of religion here is rather myopic and unbalanced. However, the writing is on the wall for Christianity: either reform or end up in the dustbin of history.

  • @Josh M,

    “This is just good hermeneutics.”
    Hermeneutics isn’t fair. It is a cheat.
    You cannot read books that way – if you do, you are cheating.

    If you treat Mein Kampf with ‘good hermeneutics’
    you will discover that Hitler is really a loving person – he just wanted to rid the world of evil as God taught him. He had a list of ideas and they would have worked if his premises were correct. If Jews truly were “the devils who killed the good Lord” as he claimed and if he had obliterated all of them it would have ended evil in the world.

    That is what hermeneutics does to honest conversation – it obliterates it.
    Hermeneutics is nonsense.

    The Bible is not my book. I believe most of it to be trash, like Mein Kampf.
    But the Bible is my problem as Mein Kampf is a problem.

    Why? Because people are acting on the nonsense in that book and calling those actions justified by the god of that book.

    So until it dies off, it matters what the Bible preaches:

    1. God hates all men and women:
    “..Thou dost hate all who do iniquity,” (Psalm 5:5)
    “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23)
    “there is no one who does not sin” (2 Chronicles 6:36)

    2. God hates women:
    “Let your women keep silent …not permitted to speak; but they are to be submissive.. if they want to learn something, let them ask their own husbands at home; for it is shameful for women to speak in church” (1Cor. 14:34-35).
    “Let a woman learn in silence with all submission..I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence” (1 Tim. 2:11-12).

    3. If you don’t call this hate, you have no humanity and this conversation is over:
    “Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.” – God (Genesis 3:16)

    If that is not hatred (to you) I have no respect for you. And I’m not kidding.

  • @KidMD,

    “…get yourself excommunicated.”

    Killing millions innocent Jews didn’t get Joseph Goebbels excommunicated. He was a Catholic in good standing until he did something much worse:

    He married a Protestant.

    The most frightening thing you can be is a ‘good catholic’ – as it may means nothing much or it might mean you are granted permission to do any amount of evil.

  • Faidros

    Augustine – You can believe in what ever you want and still be a part of academia. However if you insist on putting the words from some holy book before empiric observation and also deny the scientific method, science have no place for you.

  • Berry

    People cannot *choose* to believe anything. They are persuaded – by good logic or bad. Beliefs are either conclusions that result from thinking, justifications that result from emotional manipulation or automatic thoughtless reactions that result from concepts taught to them in their pre-critical years. The act of “choosing” to believe a religious doctrine is on a par with “choosing” to buy a carefully advertised product. The brain is a very imperfect instrument and easily manipulated. It can be made to think that it is making a *choice* when it is simply reacting to propaganda.

  • Berry

    I am a psychologist – and I confirm the previous statement. Your beliefs do not match reality. History shows that Christianity, and later Islam, have fought against the rise of modern science at every major point. They have learned to accommodate it, that is all. Likewise, religions have been at the forefront of fights against the advancement of humanistic morality. The exceptions are simply the only ones that the religious apologists remember.

  • anon

    The religious might very well be healthier because they all band together in their little church cult and so support each other. Bleat ‘have faith’, ‘God loves you’, ‘we are special and blessed’, ‘go talk to nice Father Bob about your porn problem next week’, ‘come to the Sunday coffee hour and meet the new members’.

  • anon

    I suffered being a token Catholic till high school, when I declared myself DONE with church. (I was a token Catholic because my mother was a different religiion, and my father supposedly a Catholic who had to raise me in the faith. Which he did by taking me to church a handful of times when I was a child, silent as a rock, and back home, till I was deemed old enough to walk to the church all by myself on Sunday morning.) I read Catholic blogs for amusement once in a while and learned to my considerable distress (really!) that because we were married by a JP and not in the church, our marriage is invalid. Because I have painful private parts and cannot do P in V, every sacred sperm that dies because it is not shot directly into my V at every marital grappling is going to send us to Hell. In early days when it wasn’t so very painful, because we used birth control (not wanting kids), that is going to send us to Hell. All this dictated by old child molestors who wouldn’t know how to insert their Ps in any Vs, ever. It’s bizarre, almost comical. I read the Catholic blogs written by the living saints known as Catholic mommies of 12, and all I can do is laugh at their delusions. Bitch bitch bitch, their uteruses falling out and their endless pregnancies nearly crippling them, yet “God Will Provide, I’m on the bus straight to heaven!!!” (and their poor older kids pressed into doing all the heavy work in the family and raising their younger siblings! Let’s not even touch ‘home schooling’, ewwwwwwwww! )

  • anon

    Really? That’s what’s causing it? Because they haven’t been beaten over the head with Christian religion? I think it’s because mankind is destroying the earth with chemicals and poisons, killing the oceans, polluting the land and air. I truly do think that pollution is affecting people’s brains. I doubt the thought Jesus would cry if I picked up a gun and went to shoot up a mall would stop anyone. Jesus might very well cry whether I believed in him or not, but if I felt moved to shoot up the mall, he wouldn’t stop me.

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  • geoffreysmith1

    Correction: excommunication does not involve expulsion from the Church. It confirms membership of the Church but imposes penalties for a serious breach of the rules.

  • geoffreysmith1

    Atheism has never had anything to offer to those people who are the disadvantaged and downtrodden citizens of the world – except a continuation of their miserable condition. A disbelief in God has never been of any consolation to the poor or afflicted. Only fortunate, successful and affluent persons, such as yourself, have the pride and arrogance to assert that they can live without God.

  • @geoffreysmith1,

    “Atheism has never had anything to offer to those people who are the disadvantaged and downtrodden citizens of the world – except a continuation of their miserable condition.”

    Nonsense. And you might bother to ponder what good your god is to put people in such a miserable condition in the first place!

    Atheist, JONAS SALK , gave away his patent on the polio vaccine which he discovered to SAVE BILLIONS of poor people around the world from Polio – and it worked.
    What Christian can compare with that?

    Atheist, PAUL NEWMAN , gave away $370 Million to poor children.

    Atheist, OSKAR SCHINDLER, saved thousands of Jews.

    Atheist, BILL GATES has donated $Billions through his Gates Foundation to save children from Malaria, Typhoid, Starvation, Measles and other diseases around the world.

    DOCTORS WITHOUT BORDERS , a non-religious charity with 22,000 volunteers, many of whom are ATHEISTS are working tirelessly to stop Ebola in West Africa with very little help from the Catholic Charities or the Evangelicals.

    “A disbelief in God has never been of any consolation to the poor or afflicted.”
    Red herring!
    17 MILLION CHIILDREN will die of starvation this year.
    Your God has chosen to ignore them while Preists lie to them that god ‘loves’ but…. what good is such love?
    RICH ATHEISTS like WARREN BUFFETT apparently care about those poor children more than your God does! Because they donate billions to stop starvation around the world and to improve the lives of millions. Buffet is one of the great Atheist humanitarians in world history.

    “Only fortunate, successful and affluent persons, such as yourself, have the pride and arrogance to assert that they can live without God.”
    I’ll hand all of that right back at you.
    Certain prideful, preening Christians are far more interested in making claims about Atheists instead of actually learning how tirelessly we work to help others.

    Atheists are among the most caring people on earth and I’ve had quite enough of this continuing slander!

  • geoffreysmith1

    @Atheist Max: The examples you mention of atheist benevolence are entirely irrelevant. Atheism, as a belief system (if you can call it a system) has nothing to offer the poor of the world that will in any way ameliorate their condition. A condition, I may add, that was caused by the greed and avarice of money-lusting morons like Gates and Buffet. They have seized their obscene wealth at the expense of those who need just a few dollars in order to remain alive, and all the largesse in the atheist ranks will count for nothing when they come to die. I shall now expect a further rant from you in response to my accusation that atheism is a busted flush, long ago discredited by its all-too-obvious inability to give the masses in Africa and Asia any respite from their despair.

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  • @geoffreysmith1,

    ME = “I do not believe gods are real”
    You = “At least Mohammed Atta was not an Atheist”

    You have stated that Atheists are worse than Theists.
    Even as religion projects unending misery onto the world and directly onto the poorest people.

    Here are some other Theists
    you are apparently in love with because (Thank God)
    they are not Atheists:


    St. Augustine: “witches must die”
    St. Anselm: “kill unbelievers”
    St. Thomas Aquinas: “Kill witches and unbelievers”
    Pope John Paul: “Aids is bad, condoms are worse” so 20 million died.
    Osama Bin Laden
    Rudolf Hess: Killed millions
    Cardinal Bernard Law: Leader of the Boston Priest Pedophile Network (Now living protected in the Vatican)
    The Koch Brothers
    The Green Family
    The Walton Family
    Marshall Herff Applewhite, Jr.
    Ayman Al Zawahiri
    Robert Tilton
    Joseph Mengele
    Ayatollah Khomeini
    Hahmoud Ahmadinejad
    Peter Popoff
    Reichsfuhrer SS Julius Shreck
    Reichsfuhrer SS Joseph Berchtold
    Max Koegl (Manager of Auchwitz)
    Reichsfuhrer SS Erhard Heiden
    Reichsfuhrer SS Heinrich Himmler
    Reichsfuhrer SS Karl Hanke
    Adolf Eichmann
    Adolf Deikmann
    Fritz Hardjenstein
    Werner Braune
    Bob Morehead
    Fred Phelps, Sr.
    Oral Roberts
    Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker
    Matthew Hale
    Al Queda
    Billy James Hargis
    Bob Larson
    Jim Jones
    Saddam Hussein
    David Koresh
    John Paulk
    Suicide Bombers
    D.V. Grant
    Mike Warnke
    Emperor Hirohito
    Ariel Sharon
    Yasser Arafat
    Benjamin Netanyahu
    Paul Crouch
    Pat Robertson
    Marcial Maciel Degollado
    Michelle Bachmann
    Sarah Palin
    Franz Stangl
    Paul Blobel
    Hermann Goering
    Josef Kramer
    Jerry Falwell
    Oskar Dirlewanger
    Jimmy Swaggart
    Creflo Dollar
    Ilse Koch
    Joseph Goebbels
    Reverend Sun Myung Moon
    Sunday Adelaja
    Pope Leo X
    Anathole Serromba
    Jean Bertand Aristide
    Mel Gibson
    Benny Hinn
    T.D Jakes
    Dick Cheney
    Adolph Hitler
    Kim Jong-Il
    Kaiser Wilhelm II
    Kim Il Sung
    Rush Limbaugh
    Erst Kaltenbruenner
    Michael Bray
    Paul Jennings Hill
    Father Charles Edward Coughlin
    Tomás de Torquemada
    Emperor Constantine

    If God is real, why is he such a failure at delivering peace?
    If god is good – why does he have such a disgusting marketing team?
    If God is moral, why do his injunctions lead to immoral behavior?

    “I have no Gods” – Charles Schultz, creator of Charlie Brown
    “Execute them in front of me” – Jesus (Luke 19:27)

    Believe what you want – but that very awful Jesus out of our laws.

  • Rodger

    I’m currently on disability (yet still when I’m not in pain), I have no car, and I come from a poor family. The amount of projection, assumption and ignorance contained in your reply answers all the question I’d ever have about you.

  • Rodger

    I’m currently on disability (yet still when I’m not in pain), I have no car, and I come from a poor family. The amount of projection, assumption and ignorance contained in your reply answers all the question I’d ever have about you.

  • Rodger

    “The act of “choosing” to believe a religious doctrine is on a par with “choosing” to buy a carefully advertised product.” “It can be made to think that it is making a *choice* when it is simply reacting to propaganda.” I have not heard it put that way before. This highlights the importance of critical thinking, doesn’t it.

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  • geoffreysmith1

    @ Atheist Max:

    ”You = “At least Mohammed Atta was not an Atheist” ”.

    Please don’t put words into my comments that I would not use myself.
    I never wrote any such comment, and I disown it entirely.
    As you know very well, Atta was a Muslim, not a Christian. I realise that you have some difficulty in making the distinction between the two, but Christians were not, and are not, responsible for the destruction of the WTC. Perhaps in your imagination they were, but nowhere else.
    For every example of a ‘failure’ that you give, of someone who ‘represents’ the Christian churches, I can give you two or three genuine instances of good and law-abiding people who were, and are, motivated by their Christian faith. Don’t try to play the numbers game with me, you are bound to lose, because the Church has had 2000 years of experience in which to produce saints, people outstanding for their integrity and upright behavior.
    I suspected a rant from you in reply to my previous post, and you did not disappoint me. You seize on a bad example of a Christian but completely ignore the countless good examples. A typical response by an atheist, the sort of answer that we Christians have come to expect. You slag off the Church because she will not give up on her sinful members, but you say not a single word of praise for her successful efforts in promoting faith, hope and charity among her more faithful members. Typical.

  • geoffreysmith1

    Rodger October 30, 2014 at 4:36 am:

    Meaning what, exactly?

  • geoffreysmith1

    @ Atheist Max:

    “Atheists are among the most caring people on earth and I’ve had quite enough of this continuing slander!”

    Stalin, Mao and Pol Pot must be laughing their guts up in Hell!
    Or do you concede that they were exceptions to your rule?

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  • @geoffreysmith,

    I’m not putting words in your mouth.
    You have defended THEISM as superior to ATHEISM.

    Atheist = “I don’t believe any gods are real”
    Theist = “I know which god is real and I know which one is the true God and I KNOW what it wants me to do.”

    You are a THEIST.
    Here is a list of some other members of your club.

    liberal Christians
    Some Buddhists
    Christian Fundamentalists

    Theists all agree that God exists. They all agree that they KNOW which god is the true God.

    You are a Theist.

    As was Hitler (‘God mit Uns’)
    As was Hirohito (cult of the Sun God)
    As was Stalin (he was a Seminarian)
    As was Pol Pot (Theraveda Buddhist)
    As was Osama Bin Laden
    As is the Pope.

    Please don’t tell me about how Non-Christians are not “true Theists” and the only true god is the one you happen to believe in. Every other Theist will disagree with you more than even I would!

    You are already an Atheist regarding those other gods such as Allah, Aphrodite and Zeus.

    So I go one god further than you do. God beliefs are completely overrated – they add very little good to society. Just look at the list! Good grief!

    Atheism is an excellent way to be, the most honest choice out of all of them – and a great opportunity for hope in the world.

  • @Rodger,

    Well done.
    The Bible clearly states that it is a work of propaganda:

    “But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God…” – (John 20:31)

    Just like other propaganda:

    “This booklet will explain why you can be certain the Toyota Corolla is the best car ever made in its class…” – Toyota Pamphlet, p.1, 1978

    Don’t believe the hype.

  • geoffreysmith1

    @ Atheist Max:

    “As was Stalin (he was a Seminarian)” Etc, etc, etc.

    Sheesh! ‘Was’ is the operative word. Stalin was a Georgian Orthodox Christian until he converted to atheism – and thereupon massacred millions of Ukrainians in the politically contrived famine of the 1930s.
    When a Christian converts to being a militant atheist, millions of people lose their lives – Hitler and the Nazi death camps, Stalin and the Bolshevik gulags, for examples. Atheism is a blood-lusting scourge that must be wiped off the face of the earth if mankind is ever to know any period of real peace.

  • @Geoffreysmith,

    “When a Christian converts to being a militant atheist, millions of people lose their lives…”

    NO! WRONG!
    When anyone rises to power without the Separation of Church and State MILLIONS LOSE THEIR LIVES.

    Because populations are religious and ignorant, they are vulnerable to religious blowhards like Stalin, Hitler, Pol Pot, Hirohito ETCETERA!

    Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism – it is all a tinderbox and
    only the Constitution of the United States makes freedom possible
    because it guarantees that NO PARTICULAR RELIGIOUS PHILOSOPHY:

    You are working hard to wreck the only thing which prevents people like Stalin or Hitler from coming to power in the United States!!!!!!

    The Separation of Church and State is YOUR ONLY SAFETY !!

    Meanwhile Christianity is dying. Thank goodness!

  • @geoffrey Smith,


    “I have wiped out many nations, devastating their fortress walls and towers. Their cities are now deserted; their streets are in silent ruin. There are no survivors to even tell what happened. I thought, ‘they will have reverence for me now! Surely they will listen to my warnings, so I won’t need to strike again.’ But no!”

    “Even if they stood before me pleading for these people, I wouldn’t help them. Away with them! Get them out of my sight!”

    “The slave will be severely punished, for though he knew his duty, he refused to do it…Much is required from those to whom much is given.”
    Be careful not to make peace with those who live there”
    “buy the male or female slaves from among the foreigners who live among you…also the children..You may treat them as your property, passing them on to your own children as a permanent inheritance. You may treat your slaves like this…”
    Slaves, be subject to your masters with all reverence, not only to those who are good and equitable but also to those who are perverse.”
    “if your slave declares, ‘I love my master and my wife and children and do not want to go free,’ then his master must take him to the doorpost and pierce his ear with an awl. Then he will be his servant for life.”
    I..create darkness. I..create evil, I …do all these things.”
    “Take your only son…whom you love….and kill him there as a burnt-offering to me on one of the mountains that I shall show you.”

    “Anyone who is captured will be killed with a sword. Their little children will be dashed to death right before their eyes.”

    “the city shall be taken, houses plundered, women raped; half of the city shall go into exile, but the rest of the people shall not be removed from the city.”

    “cursed is the man who holds back his sword from blood.”

    – YAHWEH



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  • Andy

    That’s an interesting question Max. I wonder if the Blessed Mother appearing to you might change your opinion? Have you ever heard of Saul (St. Paul)? He persecuted the earliest of Christians until, one day, he was struck blind and asked by Jesus himself why he persecuted those who believe and follow the Light. After 3 days of sickness and very near death, he accepted the word of Christ and began to help the earliest of believers into communities of faith. All of this to be persecuted and ultimately crucified upside down. Being willing to die for one’s friends, and one’s enemies is a mark of true sainthood. How about Saint Maximillian Kolbe, a Polish-Catholic Priest interred by the Nazi’s. He gave his life in exchange for saving a Jewish man’s in Auschwitz. He dedicated his life after receiving a vision of the Blessed Mother. “That night I asked the Mother of God what was to become of me. Then she came to me holding two crowns, one white, the other red. She asked me if I was willing to accept either of these crowns. The white one meant that I should persevere in purity, and the red that I should become a martyr. I said that I would accept them both.” Last time I read my history books, those who believe are the ones getting killed, those who persecute are the killers. Peace Max.

  • Christopher Squire

    The US is c. 100 years behind N Europe in religiosity – where I live – but you’re catching up!

  • Ah, but happily, there actually *are* “other ways” to be Christian and to do church! More and more congregations are adopting progressive Christianity – a theological approach that makes sense for the 21st century. See: “7 Ways to find a progressive Christian church”

  • IMO, following Jesus and his example is a whole lot easier to do in community and fellowship with others, than trying to do solo. Please consider this piece: “Spiritual But not Giving a Damn”

  • LG

    Hi Greg,
    I agree 100 per cent. I just recently left the last Christian church I will ever attend because of the over points and also I no longer believe the bible is literal. There is no heaven or hell and religion is man made. I get more out of going on a lake in Kayak and watching the blue water and birds singing and beautiful blue sky over head without someone judging me all the time. I am for love, peace and tranquility. I am at peace with myself and the God of the Universe and that is all I need to be happy.

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  • recovering catholic

    Your logic makes no sense at all. The number of times it has been copied carries no significance to anything. Written by the creator of the universe, but filled with useless barbaric jargon. It contains nothing that could not have been written by 1st century man. Does it have any wondercul insights in mathematics? No, it actually makes mathematical errors. Twice, it refers to the ratio of a circumference of a circle as 3 to 1. The egyptians carried pi to 3 decimsl places decades prior. It teaches us to kill our children if they talk back, and kill all apostates. It teaches us how to stone women for not being virgins, and how to properly keep slaves. It is a joke that people still believe in this crap. Wake up and do a little reading. My journey to atheism started years ago. I was actually trying to find god, not disprove him. The more I learned, the more I read, the more my consciousness was raised, and now I am happy and free, living in harmony with this world, not pretending to have dominion over it. Your christian beliefs are so narcissistic, who actually believes that their sins have some cosmic significance? The line of thought that ‘god takes a personal interest in me’ is disgusting. I could go on forever. Good luck with your fairy tails

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  • MamaKAS

    Your lack of understanding is astounding. All you can do is take passages out of context and call names. You’re childish and your ignorance is immeasurable. You don’t even know the difference between the covenants. You are truly wretched and pitiful. Very sad.

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  • C

    LOL You forgot the double quotes. Jesus was telling a story. You know, a “parable” quoting another person’s words from a totally separate time and place.

    You sir, have a sincere hate deep within. Don’t let satan control you, Jesus can set you free my brother. You just gotta pry open that rusted shut heart of yours. He wants in, just let Him in and experience life anew.

  • C

    You have been grossly misguided. Actually nothing within our own power saved us. Eph 1:11
    In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things after the counsel of his own will:

    I know what you’re thinking. “The bible is fictional because God is fictional.”
    But you know He does. I know you know, and you know I know you know but your “reprobate mind” (Romans 1:28) has set in and you can do nothing but spew hate at the very One that could end your suffering; which is obviously great given the hateful bitterness of your comments.
    Oh how He longs for your love in return. (Luke 15:7) May He awaken you to the joy and love that is Christ. Bless you.

  • C

    I see no other way. Either secession or civil war. War will probably suit satans desires; less people to exterminate.

  • Cavin

    I noticed you have given off a lot of clearly anti-theist arguments. I respect your opinion, and i am not gonna lie, you make some good points. But your anger has blinded you. Christians are not inherently good or evil. Atheist are not inherently good or evil. No one from any sort of background are inherently good or evil. I am a Christian and i admit there are Christians who do some messed up stuff, and that most atheist aren’t “evil.” And in the same way i am sure you can admit there are bad atheist and good Christians.

    Now i am not gonna insult you, or say that your beliefs are wrong, and i would appreciate you returning the favor. But the reason i am saying this is because, you seem to lash out at those who disagree with you to the point where it borders hate speech. But when you group people together like that, associating them with horrible things, it leads to anger, and hatred.

    The reason i write this is i guess just a reminder to you, that 99% of people in this world are mentally sane, and non-violent. And i just ask that you remember that.

  • Josi

    @Churchless in the Heartland:
    I am truly very sorry for the pain inflicted upon you…I am an adult survivor of child abuse and my church knew about it. I have grown to understand and trust God in every way, not Man, even church leaders, why? bc Man is Evil and we ought to be placing our trust solely upon God and become a Barean, always checking…Please won’t you first consider a few facts bf ditching the one true sovereign God that will have the last say in everything in the end, and as much as we bicker and argue the facts here in this forum, we can be assured that a God in Heaven does exist and will be heard and will have the final say…First, God who is over all, did not even spare his only son, so Churchless, think about this when u r hurting… Second, Jesus left his glorious home and willingly and volunteering-ly gave up all his power, glory and majesty to come to our defense and to a desperately wicked and broken world to set the record straight and will come again to put an end to all evil. Third, Jesus, the perfect sacrificial lamb of God, took upon his shoulders all the sins of this world in order to bridge the gap to the Father so that we could be reconciled back to the Father and undo the damage done in the GOE. Jesus suffered in every way and bore the sins of Man in his body, yes and even the sins inflicted upon you and your loved ones. He was separated from his Father while hanging on the cross which was the worse form of suffering for Jesus but he knew it had to be done this way, that sin had to be dealt with. Jesus was cut off from His own Father! His one true source of Life…Just in the same way people like your Father will be cut off for what they have done. Do not be mistaken, God sees into the heart and knows who are his own…Man’s heart is wicked, who can know it…We are all guilty, there is not one among us who is good, no not even one! both these truths are in scripture…Fourth, Jesus declared, do not avenge yourselves, for vengeance is mine saith the Lord. We live in a fallen world! And I cannot get over the fact that humans throw stones and blame a Holy God for what we are responsible for doing ourselves! it is “us” who screwed it up and the first person we want to blame is God…God made us, then He breathed Life into our nostrils and we lived…Then He gave us a magnificent Garden to live in and care for…Then the fall and everything evil in this world took root that day Man fell…God gave us free will bc he did not want robots He wanted companionship. God is the same yesterday, today and forever..He never changes, it is us who change…Jesus paid the ultimate penalty and price by giving his life for you…who do you know in this world who would ever do that for you? Arguably, there is no one else who could’ve done it…Jesus is the sinless, perfect, sacrificial lamb of God who came into a lost world to save it. So remember, it was not Jesus and the Father who attacked and inflicted pain on you…it was the evil doers in an evil world who will have to one day give an account for their actions…The Lord Almighty IS in control so do not be mistaken bc you don’t see him in your time. His thoughts are higher then our thoughts and His ways’ higher then our ways and they don’t make sense to us at the time, but God sees all, He sees the entire picture and story. Jesus came at the perfect time and suffered. Tragedies strike at specific times in history for a reason. For God to be revealed. Our God knows suffering best as he watched his only son being tortured and brutalized, all for our benefit. Churchless, could you stand by and watch your only son being brutalized for the benefit of humanity? Think about this when you are hurting. Our God will avenge! The mindsets and attitudes from within this forum is what Jesus came for. Do not be deceived as we live in a world stained by evil in every way and in ever form..Satan will not stop at nothing and will use every form of evil to dis-way a human in order to obtain another soul. He is out for numbers and desires to take as many souls with him at whatever the cost, even the cost of rape, incest and every kind of moral depravity! and He knows his time is running thin….This world was never intended to last forever, but we are!…Blessings

  • Anon

    Since when do you need to go to a church to be a good Christian? Matthew 6:5-6.

  • Braden

    One thing you must understand is that not all people are the same. Your opinion is so one sided and biased, how can you even call that an argument. This world, this universe, what if it was created by the big bang, or some other incomprehensible event, but what triggered it? I believe that climate change is a real thing, i see this world changing fast and it scares me. I believe evolution is a very real thing, just look at genetic mutations, that is solid proof that organisms can change without artificial intervention. But what if God is the one who started it all? My mind works very intellectually and numerically, i need to see the facts and the evidence myself to be convinced, and i look around at this amazing world we have with it’s innumerable levels of beauty and love and hate and corruption, and i think there is no way it was completely random. Why can no one consider the possibility that evolution and the big bang are all God’s design? That that is how He created all thing?

  • dave bowen

    @atheist max I am not atheist,but i am agnostic. One that believes that IF their is a god,it does not intervene in the lives of men(like the Deists Jefferson,Madison,Hamilton,Franklin) Thank you for standing up for a society that would be much better without a god with bloody hands. And for advocating a government,that stays out of religious affairs,and for one that should ban religion from government affairs.
    These people,especially alleged Christians who have not a compassionate bone in their bodies,could learn a lot from someone like you,but being of closed mind they will not even try.

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  • kate

    your comment compelled me to respond…im researching to do a teaching on the difference between a “religious christian” and an “empowered christian”.

    I want to encourage you to look into the difference- what changes everything is the Holy Spirit. He was sent to christians after Jesus left earth and Jesus referred to Him as our “helper”. So many churches either make the Holy Spirit weird, or they treat Him like the red headed step child…but I truly believe that what you wrote is a product of a lack of the presence of God through the Holy Spirit. I go to a church that believes in both spirit and truth- it’s C3 San Diego they have a free app where you can listen to the podcasts and we are in the middle of a series called “frequently asked questions” we answer a lot of the questions that you wrote in your comment…there is a difference between knowing and studying who Jesus was, and actually knowing Him through the Holy Spirit. Praying that you will find truth!

  • Jim

    Hope you are honest when looking at life. Question, first, you basically say your view is right because it is, “your view”. You think people who believe certian things are “delusional”. You understand that if “truth” is nothing more than each humans “feelings of belief” or “belief” in whatever, that it is therefor true. Thats what you are doing. So why is what I believe not just as true? or Hitler? Now, we are limitied to our conversation here, but, someone might say that Hitler is clearly an evil person, right? But why? Because what he did was so vile? Immoral? Where does that belief come from? The fact is everythiing you have come to believe about morality was created because of everything that is in the BIBLE. You may deny that, but it is true. Our entire world was changed because of those beliefs which were spoken by God, in person to Abraham, Moses, the prophets etc., the entire Egyption population, the ruling country of the World, Roman World, Millions of…

  • Jim

    All these people saw and experienced God personally. Jesus was seen by 100,000 of thousands healing, raising people from death, more miracles than could be written in the books of the world, does God have to do this for each generation for you? Who do you know that can create things from nothing???? Can’t happen. Take a pile of chemicals that make a human. Do anything you want to them, in our atmosphere. Will that pile become a human? With intelligence U cant turn it into a human. Yet toss it into space, and add a billion years and it will become a human? No. I Corinthians 1: 18-31 if your honest, read it. 18 For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 19 For it is written, “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the discernment of the discerning I will thwart.” 20 Where is the one who is wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the World?

  • julie

    The stockholm syndrome is in full effect for many of these commentators. Hopelessly impregnated with this usleless ideology from birth by the people whom the trust the most, their parents. It must be overwheming to live a life of fear. Fear of death. So fearful of death that they actually believe a Jew named Jesus who was trudging around the middle east 2000 years ago was the creator of the universe. I could go on, but curing psychosis won’t happen overnight. Fortunately, the future looks promising as statistics indicate the end of religiosity in this country is coming. Its just a matter of time.

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  • Doug

    The Institutional church is shrinking and eventually not be relevant in years to come. I hope the Christian message is recovered and people will get free from the torture of religion across the world. People are born free, but we need religion to tell us we are not. Our minds have been poorly indoctrinated with some man’s “revelation” about God, when simply all we “know” about God is what we have learned. If you get quiet, stop listening to the TV preachers and Christian radio, you will discover God is good, God is not mad at you, and you are good with God.

    It is funny to ready the Atheist’s comments on here as if they really know anything. All you are is indoctrinated puppets, really no different than the religious. It works in the same area of the brain. Has religion jacked up the world? Yes. But you really know nothing about the human spirit or God. Keep being angry, it is proven to be real good for you.

  • Todd

    Here’s all the truth there is: Religion is a sign of a weak, pretentious mind and a personality born of delicate constitution. Fear. There is no more need for religion in modern times, even for comfort when faced with death. Science has provided most of the answers people historically sought through religion. Now it is being used for no more than justification for hate and bigotry. There is zero difference between an armed Christian willing to act against a Muslim and and armed Muslim prepared to act against a Christian in the name of their God. None, zero.. nothing. If you believe so your mind is already tainted from being “churched”. The very term aligns with indoctrination.