Planet pope * Finally atheist * Father Divine : Tuesday’s Roundup

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London climate march 2014. Image by Garry Knight via Flickr.

London climate march 2014. Image by Garry Knight via Flickr.

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Given Pope Francis' tongue-lashing of the curia, we can only imagine what he has in store for climate change deniers. After a year, atheism sticks. And Father Divine is dead, but his religion lives on in a mansion outside Philadelphia.

  • Good for Ryan Bell. I’m glad to see more religious believers leaving the make-believe world of the Bible and embracing reality.

    That also goes for the Pope for realizing that praying to God won’t solve our climate problems. We need to actually work together as a species to fix this problem before it is too late. It is a shame that we need someone who believes in magic to convince the world of science, but that is the sad state of the world right now.

  • Karla

    Staks-You believe in magic because you believe that nothing turned into
    something then became everything. When you look at a building you know
    there was a builder/designer. The building didn’t just form/build itself and
    it’s the same with creation. We all see creation and we know there was a
    creator. If the sun was any closer we would burn and if it was any further
    away we would freeze. Just chance? Read Romans 1:18-32. You can also
    read Jesus among other gods by Ravi Zacharias and also another good
    book to read is the Case for Christ by Lee Strobel. God/Jesus are real!
    Many don’t want God to real because they don’t want to change their life
    and/or be told how to live so they deny God/the Truth/Bible. God bless.

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  • n. robinson

    Should ” Christians ” be in the same boat as people of Islamic faith , doing
    their best to gather converts in Africa ? Who is to say what is best for them ?
    Has anyone asked them what they would like ?

  • ronald

    Worry not, Bishop Cook! You have a relationship with Christ and so He forgives you for killing the biciclist, just as He forgave your previous drunk driving incident. Man’s laws matter not in the big picture! They can put you in prison but your spirit will always run free with Christ through meadows of green and gold.

    Your congregation and all CHristians everywhere stand with you, Good Bishop!

  • Charles Freeman

    The universe is real and we perceive it through our human senses. We understand the universe through rational thought, and language that we understand through our human senses. We demand evidence for recognizing truth and valid propositions. In this context, there are no deities. When we work together we can maximize our survival and happiness potentials. I believe this, in contrast to fictitious legends and ancient writings of dubious heritage. The people who shout “god is real” will eventually merge into the historical background.

  • Doc Anthony

    Nobody knew it at the time he was elected Pope, but now we’re all finding out that Pope Francis is a member (and soon-to-be salesman) of the Global Warming Religion. Very good news for the minions of that cult.

    First, Mr. Francis is a hot media item, and an endorsement from a hot media item is exactly what you need when you are selling something controversial like global warming.

    Second, with Mr. Francis’s endorsement, it will be that much easier to turn a blind eye to the censorship and bullying of prominent scientists like Dr. Lennart Bengtsson. Much easier to turn a blind eye to little things like “Climategate” and “Broken Hockey Sticks” and fudged data.

    Yep, 2015 will be a banner year for the First Church of Global Warming!

  • Fran


    I will stick with God and his Word of truth, the Bible. Why?

    Because reality today due to man’s actions and words don’t seem at all promising and beneficial for us humans at any time in the near future!

    Constant warring between nations, acts by increasing groups of terrorists, crimes and social injustice are still par for the course. Natural disasters are becoming more commonplace and even more disastrous than before.

    The Bible foretold these things would be taking place in the last days of a wicked era and they are taking place before our very eyes!!

    So I will continue to put my trust in God and his heavenly kingdom (Daniel 2:44) or heavenly government that will soon put an end to ALL the harsh realities of life we now face.

    We humans will then be able to enjoy the “real life” we were meant to enjoy, since the time when man was created by God, forever on earth!! (Revelation 21:1-4) 😀

  • John P. S.

    Ryan Bell sounds like a mechanic who wants to build a horse-cart that he is going to put before the horse! Good luck with your ‘reality as it is’ where the horse and the cart will appreciate each other for eternity!
    John P. S.

  • John P. S.

    Why are some people allergic to the Pope endorsing a scientific view of climate change that is widely accepted? Is it because they think that people who profess religious beliefs are forbidden to talk about this world?
    John P. .S

  • *facepalm*
    You have made three arguments that have all been refuted multiple times.
    1. The First Cause argument. You should really Google that. For the record, you don’t know what I believe because you never asked and I never told you. You just assumed what you think I must believe. For the record, Lawrence Krauss wrote a great book not only answering this question with solid science, but also giving a history of cosmology which explains why we know what we know about the universe. It’s called, “A Universe From Nothing.”
    2. The Argument by Design. Again, you should Google it. If the Earth was just a degree closer or further from the sun, all life as we know it wouldn’t exist however, some other life might exist. Plus, if some other planet in our solar system was closer or further away from the sun, life might exist there. Do you know how many stars are in the universe? If just a small fraction of those stars had planets, there would be more than trillions of planets and the odds are that at least some of them (probably billions) would land in just the right spot to foster life. We know that is the case for at least one planet because we are here to ask the question.
    3. The Atheists Just Like to Sin argument. This is pretty ridiculous considering that the argument could easily work the other way around and also doesn’t match with the facts. For starters, Christians can sin all they like as long as they ask Jesus for forgiveness, they are safe and headed to paradise (according to your religion). So maybe you are Christian because you like to sin and get away with it. God’s law is higher than man’s laws, right? You just like to break the law. Besides, studies have shown that organized atheists tend to be more moral than religious believers. Take the recent study on American’s attitudes on torture. Christians are overwhelmingly more likely to support the use of torture than atheists. On the issues of women’s rights, minority rights, gay rights, and pretty much every other moral issue of the day, atheists have shown to have a much better record that religious believers on average.

  • Fran,
    Not promising? Are you kidding? We just test launched Orion a few weeks ago. Io9 just released an article about 15 futuristic advancements that happened just this past year: – One of them included giving a man back his legs. How many amputees has God healed? Come to think about it, how many slaves are there in America compared to how many slaves are in the Bible? Humanity is advancing on every level — technologically, medically, morally, socially, etc.

    Warring nations? I guess there is none of that in the Bible? lol. Interestingly enough, most of the warring nations are warring because of religion. Terrorism is religiously motivated. Science takes us to the moon and religion flies planes into buildings.

    Natural disasters — That’s called global climate change and last I checked the people most in denial of this are religious. So the reason why we have such harsh natural disasters is because religious believers like yourself are creating the problem and preventing us from solving it.

    BTW, the Bible also said that Jesus would return within a single generation and that was 2000 years ago. In fact, the Bible says a lot of things like that women are the property of a man and that they shouldn’t be allowed to teach. Let’s face facts here, the Bible isn’t a very good book.

  • See Fran, This is why there are so many natural disasters. It’s not because God is angry it is because Christians are in denial about reality.

  • Karla

    Staks-Thanks for the feedback. Christians must Repent/agree their sin
    is wrong then bear good fruit which means not continue to practice sin.
    People who think they can just sin away then go to heaven are wrong!
    Luke 13 and 1 Corinthians 5 and 6 the whole chapters says we must
    change/not continue to practice sin so Christians can sin not practice
    sin. Big difference! Bible says to Repent or perish! We must Repent!
    Psalm 14:1 is a good verse to read and Romans 1:18-32. God bless.

  • Karla

    Staks-Bible prophecy has all come true and Jesus coming back
    within a generation refers a certain prophecy coming true which
    is a warning so people will know when that certain prophcey comes
    true He will come back during that time/that generation. God/Jesus
    doesn’t want anyone to go to hell so He warns people so they will
    Repent and turn from their sin/wicked ways. We all must Repent!

  • Karla, you ignored most of what I said and only focused on my counter-example to your claim that atheists just like to sin and that is why they reject God. I am well versed in the verses of the Bible. I know you can justify almost anything with them.

    My point was that your claim that atheists love to sin is ridiculous and that an atheist could easy make that same claim about Christians using the same kind of logic. I was not claiming that this was actually the case.

    So really, you just ignored everything I said. That’s fine, but I hope you will take some time to actually think about what I have said and maybe do some research on your own. Because if you are going to live your life by some ancient holy book, you should at least make sure that the holy book in question is true. I know, I know, you are 100% certain that it is true, but maybe you should fact check it anyway. Surely that would just strengthen your faith, right? What do you have to lose?

    That’s how I became an atheist. I was once a religious believer just like you. I was so certain that there was a God and that he was looking out for me. He guided my life and everything. But then I started to look into it a little bit and as it turns out, my God was imaginary and I was guiding my own life the whole time without realizing it.

  • Karla

    Staks-Your conscience was guiding you because God has written it
    on all of our hearts to know what is right and wrong. God/Jesus are
    real and the Bible is true. Conscience means with knowledge. God
    gaves us all our conscience/the Holy Bible to guide us and we also
    have creation which is the proof that there is a creator. God bless.

  • If God doesn’t want anyone to go to Hell, then why does Christianity claim that most people will go to Hell to be tortured for all eternity unless they obey God?

    God is all-powerful right? If he doesn’t want something to happen, then poof, it shouldn’t happen, right? If something happens, it must be part of God’s plan, right? So billions of people being tortured for all eternity must be part of God’s plan, right? What kind of self-respecting deity would want billions of people to be tortured for all eternity? Think about it.

  • Karla

    Staks-It’s called free will. God doesn’t want us to go to hell but
    people choose not to listen to Him. Look at what has happened
    to the world because we didn’t listen to God/Jesus. God bless.

  • The pope who famously said “who am I to judge?” is about to judge . . . climate deniers. An encyclical on global warming has long been expected but now we have some details.

    Why would the Pope wish to allocate his time and the attention he receives to a public dispute with Richard Lindzen, Wille Soon, Anthony Watts, and Steve McIntyre on a matter in which he is almost completely unschooled? There is no matter of faith and morals at stake in such disputes. Of course, it could be that the Pope, like Lauren Markoe, adheres to secular credos which are status markers among a certain sort of occidental bourgeois. That the Pope is silly in this way would be unsurprising, as such silliness is unsurprising among journalists. Pretty dispiriting, after 34 years of capable leadership in the Church, of course.

  • 1. Free Will and God don’t exist.
    2. Even if they did, it doesn’t absolve God. It makes him even more of a monster. Imagine there was a guy with a gun and he put that gun to your loved one’s head. He warns you that if you don’t give him all your money, he will shoot your loved one. Then, without a moment’s hesitation, he shoots your loved one. The police come and arrest you and he goes on his merry way. After all, it wasn’t his fault, he told you the consequences and you rebelled by not giving him all your money. You killed your loved one; not him.

    This is your argument. God created a situation where he demands that everyone obey him, but he doesn’t tell us this. Instead, you claim that we are suppose to accept that this is true because some ancient series of books which are open to pretty much any interpretation says so. If we don’t follow the “correct” interpretation, we are going to be tortured for all eternity and it would be our own fault because we didn’t bow down to the extremely vague threat that your imaginary deity allegedly made.

    Maybe Karla, if you aren’t a good little girl Santa will put coal in your stocking next year.

    If God wants me to believe and not be tortured, then he knows what will convince me. So either he really wants me to be tortured, or he just doesn’t exist and this whole thing is a load of BS.

  • Widely accepted by whom? Just a review of the behavior of principals in this set in recent years (the characters at the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia, Michael Mann, and Lonnie Thompson) is enough to persuade a prudent individual to take what they say with a hunk of rock salt. There’s grant money and reputations at stake. In any case, their salient predictions have not been panning out.

  • I’m glad to see more religious believers leaving the make-believe world of the Bible and embracing reality.

    You mean the ‘reality’ which says everything is the result of undirected physical processes but somehow my mental process is derived from physical elements assembled by such process but reliably the indicator of a mind with personal agency and a capacity to discern the truth? Whatever.

  • Grant money and reputations? Clearly you don’t know how science works. If someone can disprove a solid scientific theory, they will have a much greater reputation than just towing the party line. Also, corporate money trumps grant money. Any climate scientist could make way more money sucking up to the Oil Industry. It is actually pretty surprising that so few scientists have gone that route. It shows that they care more about humanity’s future on this planet more than they care about lining their pockets.